Thursday, May 08, 2008

The Dawkins Delusion

The former atheist and scientist who turned to theism, Alister McGrath, in a short tome responds quite well to Richard Dawkins' unfortunate railing against Christianity. I'm finding more and more that the present militancy of atheism against Christianity has more to do with attitude than evidence. McGrath amply demonstrates that.

When I studied skeptics and atheists in graduate school in the early 80s I found a common characteristic: they tended to look at the ugly and dysfunctional rather than see the beauty, order, and design of nature. David Hume was just sure that if there were a God, he was indeed limited in power or intelligence or in love.

Hume and Dawkins see what they want to see and dismiss (in true postmodern style) everything else. The self-described "objective" and "rational" scientist, Dawkins is just sure that anyone who thinks differently than he does about God must surely be biased and ignorant. McAlister says:

"Relgion is persistently and consistently portrayed in the worst possible way, mimicking the worst features of religious fundamentalism's portrayal of atheism" (14).
Atheists can not let go of the carnival atmosphere of the Scopes trial. Ann Coulter's book, Godless, has a wonderful retelling of what really happened. It seems the whole thing was hatched up in New York, that Scopes was only a rare substitute and recruited, that the town council wanted the trial to gain attention, and the movie Inherit the Wind told the story unfairly. The devil worked hard to make religion look silly, and a small town didn't get in the way.

So many charges against Christianity as a religion cannot be leveled against Jesus Christ the Lord. Jesus never sent anyone into war. The teaching of Jesus did much to end slavery and to elevate women. The ethic He taught on the mountain has yet to be surpassed by anyone anywhere.

I ran across a website recently that spoke of the "myth" of Christ and compared him to the myths surrounding Joseph Smith and Muhammad. While I concur that neither Smith nor Muhammad were prophets, the website was misleading about Jesus. Neither Smith nor Islam have any ancient prophecies about them, but there are hundreds pointing to the Messiah Jesus. The evidence for the resurrection of Jesus from the dead is indisputable and overwhelming. The website dismissed this but certainly never answered it.

We live in a society that hollers loud and long about narrowness and closed-mindedness in Christianity but hardly looks at itself. The human body could not have occurred undesigned. We know that. The intricacies of our cells and our bodies demand a designer, just as the morality of our souls demand a moral governor. This designer and governor is no less than God, the God of the Bible.



dell kimberly said...

Thanks Phil, great post

Joseph Pauley said...

Monkey Business: The True Story of the Scopes Trial by Marvin Olasky & John Perry is an enlightening read on the truth about the Scopes Trial. If you liked Coulter's remarks about it, you'll love this book. I find it easier to quote from somebody not named Ann Coulter.