Thursday, July 23, 2009

The de-baptizer blowdryer




One of my interests in regards to culture & religion is the relatively recent rise of atheist activism in culture. More and more, atheists are making their presence known through various campaigns that attack faith & religion allegedly in defense of reason. Today's point in case, the de-baptizer blow dryer is no exception. While this campaign does nothing for the theology of a pentecostal because if one simply does not want their baptism as assurance of their salvation, they can simply walk away from the faith, it does provide points of contention with Catholicism and other faiths that follow a once saved, always saved theology.

Atheists Among Us: the Birth of a Religion
As mentioned above, atheist activism is on the rise. The de-baptizer blow dryer is nothing new in consideration of other recent atheist campaigns such as The Blasphemy Challenge and the introduction of atheist billboard campaigns. The bigger point about these various novelty campaigns is that I believe we are witnessing the onset of a much bigger battle of atheism vs. faith. In this regards, atheism is a religion of its own, and it's gathering many converts. No longer is atheism a confession of a person in regards to their belief that God does not exist as it has been over the past couple centuries, but now it is a religion claiming to possess the truth, and therefore at war with other religions who claim to possess their own special understanding of truth. Just as Christianity is at odds with Islam because of different faith-claims, the same must be said in regards to atheism. Atheism even has it's own set of naturalist believers such as Richard Dawkins (pictured at left), Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens. Believing in God is no longer an intellectual flaw for atheists, as it has been considered in the past, but now belief in God is considered an intellectual sin which must be attacked with intellectual militancy by them.

Strategy


Like the red scare in the 1950's, I think we as Christians need to be ready in the coming decades for an invasion of atheists. And I do not mean that we need to live in paranoia and attempt a Salem Witch Trial amongst possible atheists, but what I do mean is that we need to be ready to understand atheism and defend our faith against their attacks. I have heard of several churches introducing short-term seminars on apologetics of the different arguments around to prove that God exists or that He does not exist. And I do believe, as post-modernism comes to a close, that we will observe more of a shift back to objectivity. And with this we need to know what we believe and why we believe it beyond pure emotional testimony. What do you guys think?

3 comments:

John said...

I fear too many Christians will fall into the trap of trying to prove God exists. I say trap since I don't think it can be done; since if it could be done one would not need faith.

Joel Riley said...

I completely agree. God cannot be proven. I probably worded my argument wrong. I guess what I mean to say is we have to prepare ourselves for some of the atheistic rhetoric such as the problem of evil and arguments for naturalism (evolution, etc...).....

Ron Giesecke said...

I've actually seen apologetics as something way different than trying to "prove" the existence of God, but rather an active re-defining of the parameters of the argument.

By this I mean that the usual questions about pain and suffering, evil and such are actually issues that the atheist must explain. Apologetics is merely an attempt to take back the offense. The same proponents of natural selection and random collocation issues immediately switch to a moral framework when asking why tsunamis kill innocent people, when in reality natural slection absolutely requires this.

But some objective moral law is ascribed to in an attempt to paint Christians into a corner. Thus, a concrete law by which good and evil is delineated. Atheism provides none, so they borrow from God's standard of right and wrong to disprove God. Apologetics is simply a way of saying "I will respect your attempt to make man in your own image, but you don't get to use God's dirt to do it."

-R