Tuesday, December 20, 2011
A Hitch in the Giddy-Up
Last week the world saw the death of one of the most famous and militant voices against God. Christopher Hitchens died and now most assuredly knows whether he was right or wrong regarding his life’s work.
With Hitchens’ passing came the retrospectives, like the one I read on the “Conservative” Daily Caller: “Dead at 62, Christopher Hitchens taught us how to live, and how to die”.
I find it a rather odd idea that Hitchens offered an example of life well spent--when his life was seemingly awash in bitterness against a God he claimed he didn’t believe in. Not only did he live with this bitterness, he did all he could to persuade others to adopt a similar view.
I suppose the Daily Caller Hitchens eulogist meant to assert that it is honorable that Hitchens died defiantly--refusing to entertain the idea of God even whilst facing his own mortality, more power to him.
The article’s main purpose was to paint this bitter man as a champion of humanity--the patron saint of Secular Humanism if you will. Focused on opposing tyranny, temporally and spiritually. Such self-righteous pursuits must seem cold comfort now.
Nevertheless the eulogy sparked a dialog as polarizing as the man himself. An Exchange I had with a couple of fellows may be useful. It certainly emphasizes the shallow nature of many who have learned from the life and death of Hitchens.
Most of these people never run into anyone with arguments they can’t counter with anything beyond rhetoric and insults. It is my prayer that these people begin to think and in so doing, open them up to the work that the Holy Ghost wants to perform in them.
I am grateful at these times that I am used of God to plant seeds and that He has allowed me to write my blog Digital Publius. It’s useful because I can cut and paste my own articles as I have been inspired to write on so many apologetic subjects and atheists always say the same things.
If you are a regular reader of Digital Publius, you are familiar with some of what I say here. It is a good idea to create a file with good resources if you are prone towards sharing your faith regularly as we are all called to do.
I jumped in after the response an atheist offered to a person who asked why the secular are so against offering creationism as an alternative theory to evolution in our public schools.
Carl Spackler: Because it's not scientific theory. It's a religious invention to answer a scientific theory. Can you get anyone outside of religion to accept it? The Catholic Church endorses evolution.
Digital Publius: In a beautiful letter to his wife Maria Christina, Nobel Laureate in Physics, Guglielmo Marconi wrote:
I know how much you love and cherish the beautiful Nature - the expression of God’s Will - where one can find the ideal eternal values: the Truth, the Beauty and the Good (and you possess the three of them). The harmonious unity of causes and laws forms the Truth; the harmonious unity of lines, colors, sounds, and ideas forms the Beauty; while the harmony of emotions and the will forms the Good, which in being the ultimate expression of the Eternal and Supreme Creator brings man to completion and drives us to seek absolute perfection.
He also stated:
The more I work with the powers of Nature, the more I feel God’s benevolence to man; the closer I am to the great truth that everything is dependent on the Eternal Creator and Sustainer [Creatore e Reggitore Eterno]; the more I feel that the so-called ‘science’ I am occupied with is nothing but an expression of the Supreme Will, which aims at bringing people closer to each other in order to help them better understand and improve themselves.
Physics Nobel Laureate Arno Penzias, in a statement to the New York Times on March 12, 1978 on the Big Bang Theory remarked:
The best data we have are exactly what I would have predicted, had I had nothing to go on but the five books of Moses, the Psalms, the Bible as a whole.
Nobel Laureate in Physics, William Phillips in a letter to T. Dimitrov May 19th, 2002; in reply to several questions as to whether he believed in the existence of God:
I believe in God. In fact, I believe in a personal God who acts in and interacts with the creation. I believe that the observations about the orderliness of the physical universe, and the apparently exceptional fine-tuning of the conditions of the universe for the development of life suggest that an intelligent Creator is responsible. …I believe in God because of a personal faith, a faith that is consistent with what I know about science.
Carl Spackler: I said the same thing to my wife when it had been a really long time.
Digital Publius: Your flippancy belies the weakness of your assumptions.
When confronted with the marvels of life and the universe, one must ask why and not just how. The only possible answers are religious. For me that means Protestant Christianity, to which I was introduced as a child and which has withstood the tests of a lifetime. But religion is a great backyard for doing science. In the words of Psalm 19, "The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament showeth His handiwork." Thus scientific research is a worshipful act in that it reveals the wonders of God's creation.
-Arthur L. Schawlow, Nobel Laureate (Physics, 1981).
Carl Spackler: "to which I was introduced as a child..." Religion brain washes little kids. Sunday school is like a totalitarian mind control zone. How many religions let the kids choose for themselves?
Digital Publius: Your question was: "Can you get anyone outside of religion to accept it?" I supplied you with several quotes from Nobel physicists. You then said:
"to which I was introduced as a child...
'Religion brain washes little kids. Sunday school is like a totalitarian mind control zone. How many religions let the kids choose for themselves?'"
This proves how little you know about Christianity--it is always about choice. You cannot be born a Christian--you are not a Christian because you went to Sunday school.
You are not a Christian until you have accepted for yourself that what you have learned is true. You cut the sentence off, Dr. Schawlow said himself that he questioned what he learned as a child when he said his faith: "...has withstood the tests of a lifetime."
The tragedy is that you don't even recognize, because of your own narrow thinking, that anyone could come to the conclusion that Christ is exactly who He said He is without being brainwashed. Carl Spackler asked:
"How many religions let the kids choose for themselves?"
A Christian parent raises his child in the admonition of the Lord--but he cannot make his child a Christian. I will not speak for other "religions" (though I have studied most of them.) But the God of the Holy Bible does not force Himself on anyone, He says:
"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will eat with him, and he with me." Revelation 3:21 Digital Publius:
You just have to have an open mind--people don't disbelieve in God because of a lack of evidence but rather despite the evidence.
I have said this before in various discussions over the years, primarily with atheists. It is impossible for man to have created God. Man does not currently, nor has he ever had, the power to create ex nihilo “out of nothing”.
Everything man has produced has a frame of reference. There could be no god concept apart from God having first revealed Himself to man.
If God revealed Himself to man it is prima facie that He did so in a particular way. It is the responsibility of man to determine the way. Creation itself is the only safe objective medium to use in determining which tradition is reliably the way God revealed Himself.
In other words, the tradition whose source makes the most accurate statements about the universe and reality is most likely the Creator of the universe. The source most adept at describing man’s nature objectively as opposed to the way man wishes to see himself is the Creator of man.
The God of the Holy Bible expresses this in what amounts to a challenge to man and all who would espouse false beliefs. It is a recurring theme in the Holy Bible:
“The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” Psalm 19:1
The Psalm goes on to describe the movement of the sun, declaring that only God could put such a thing in action.
“Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: “ Romans 1:19,20
The God revealed in the Holy Bible is saying examine the world and compare it to what I have revealed to you. Many of history’s greatest scientists understood this and expressed as much as I have already shown.
Carl Spackler: Prove it.
Digital Publius: If there is a God, as it seems logical to assume, then as He says-there is also an adversary working against man. The Adversary, like man lacks the ability to create from nothing, but he is very good at inspiring man to do what is counter to man’s own well being.
It is that Adversary that inspires atheism and false religions and narrow-mindedly prevents students from examining all possibilities for the origins of the universe.
Carl Spackler: Why does it seem logical to assume there is a god? It would seem illogical to believe in magic and miracles. It was illogical that Jesus rose from the grave. Illogical that he raised the dead. And why am I narrow minded for not believing in your god. Do you know how many gods you don't believe in? Thousands upon thousands. The Aztecs alone had over a thousand gods. You're also a non-believer.
Digital Publius: This is why I don't believe that most people who subscribe to your way of thinking actually "think" or at the very least you don't thoroughly examine the arguments you face. I have already answered your last question. But I will elaborate.
If God revealed Himself to man it is again prima facie that He did so in a particular way If one takes a practical look by eliminating the idealistic, when engaged in comparative theological study, you have to determine that there are many false religions in the world, but only one that lines up with reality.
Not all faiths can be equally valid because all faiths do not equally reflect reality. Why would God tell the Hebrews the earth is round and that it hangs in space, but then tell the Hindus the earth is flat and it sits on the backs of elephants standing on turtles, or that the earth is just an illusion? Why give one group the more accurate, demonstrable truth and lie to another group?
Why tell the Muslim the sun goes down in a pool of mud and slime? If the Qur’an gets that wrong, if it is wrong on natural things, why should I believe what the Islamic god says about the supernatural. If Allah gives false reports about creation, and the tangible, how can I believe him when it comes to my soul and the intangible?
useyourhead: "don't disbelieve in God because of a lack of evidence but rather despite the evidence".
"It is impossible for man to have created God. Man does not currently, nor has he ever had, the power to create ex nihilo “out of nothing”. “Man can't come up with concepts?? What about all the other Gods? Beautifully said utter horseshit.
Digital Publius: LOL, you should be able to think further than that--If there is indeed a God and an adversary, that adversary would also inspire a plethora of false gods to distract man from the truth. It certainly seems to have worked in your case.
useyourhead: You true believers find Satan very useful.
Digital Publius: Actually, it is Satan who finds people like you useful.
Holy Scripture admonishes us:
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: I Peter 3:15
Christ’s death, burial and resurrection is the ultimate manifestation of God’s love towards us! We cannot allow the Christopher Hitchens of the world to turn that love into a negative.
I saw a man last week suggest that Christ sacrifice was bad because God suggests that men are sinful and need Him. Who is God to suggest that man needs a savior? (if you click the link and watch the video, read the venomous liberal anti-Christian comments below—these are the people you are aligning yourself with Black believers when you vote Democrat).
This is the mindset that is taking hold in our country. It is also why those of us who confess a faith in Christ need to consider whom we give our votes to. Will we support politicians that uphold this sort of secular thinking? Or will we stand with the precepts of God? The Democrat party leads the assault against God in the public square.
The only confessing Christians that vote Democrat in large numbers are Black. The overwhelming majority of Democrats do not adhere to Christianity at all. They may be Buddhists, New Age or follow some kind of ill-defined “spirituality” but they reject Biblical Christianity.
Black folks overlook the Democrat’s ungodly agenda to vote for the party they think represents their temporal good. Modern Black folks place the temporal above the spiritual when it comes to politics.
Black folks will vote for the party they think helps the needy--even as that same Democrat party works to ensure that there will be less needy to help, as they convince the needy to kill their own babies in the womb. They also work to normalize lifestyles that are naturally against cultivating healthy families.
The Christopher Hitchens are all a part of abandoning God in favor of man’s morality. The left speaks of “Hope” and “Change” as they embrace the philosophies of the hopeless. We see the type of change this brings about--as we create more and more liberal secularists who think they can learn anything positive from men without hope like Hitchens.
As time goes by, we will see more and more Christians saying fleshy things like I am a social conservative, but I give my vote to the left because I am an economic liberal.
Do you really think a party that can be so tragically wrong on the spiritual matters can at the same time be right economically? If they miss what the Holy Bible teaches about life, is it any wonder they likewise miss what God teaches fiscally? No wonder there is a “Hitch” in the Black community’s giddy-up!
A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. James 1:8
© Hassan Nurullah