Published on Sep 4, 2012
Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 2, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider
Published on Sep 19, 2012
Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 16, 2012 | Derek Neider
The Bible and Archaeology (1/5)
The Bible maintains several characteristics that prove it is from God. One of those is the fact that the Bible is accurate in every one of its details. The field of archaeology brings to light this amazing accuracy.
I want to make two points today. 1. There is no way for an atheist to achieve last meaning. 2. The atheist can not come up with any intellectual basis for the “Golden Rule.” In a world of time and chance the survival of the fittest is the best he can come with. (Woody Allen’s movie makes that point very well with his reference to “might makes right.”)
In response to John Brummett’s article “Irony abounds as religion arises,” Arkansas News Bureau, August 16, 2011,
August 16th, 2011 at 9:46 am
Atheists understand that life is wonderful because we only have one. It’s not about having a purpose in life as much as it’s about living life to the fullest extent while trying to make the world a happy place for ALL. The latter part of that statement is why Atheists advertise and proselytize – because religion often gives a person a sense of superiority over others from different faiths and the non-religious, and that often leads to prejudice, division, and violence.
I am an Atheist, yet I believe whole-heartedly in the Golden Rule. Do unto others as you’d have others do unto you. It’s the core belief in over 20 of the largest world religions, believe it or not. .. The fact is this, if you truly follow that rule then you won’t kill or steal or lie or covet thy neighbors anything because you would never want someone doing that to you. It’s common sense, it’s simple human morality, nothing implanted by gods.
Christians have a basis for their morality because the infinite personal God of the Bible has spoken in the Bible to them. The Bible was written in a space time setting and many of the passages of the Bible have been verified as historically accurate.
On the other hand, many of the passages of the Book of Mormon has been disproved (For instance, use of horses and chariots in the USA 2000 years ago). Jesus said that he was the only way to God (John 14:6) and that he was the truth and the light. Those who do not have revealed truth are left in the dark when it comes to morals. Let me give you a perfect example concerning the “Golden Rule.”
Earlier I took a look at the Woody Allen film “Crimes and Misdemeanors.” In that film Judah has his troublesome mistress killed because she was about to destroy him by revealing his past illegal activities. Judah is told by his agnostic to not be troubled by guilt and that he is home free. She noted that Hitler proved that might makes right. (Martin Landau played the part of Judah and he revealed that several men had confided to him that they wished they had done the same deed as Judah because they would have been happier.)
The basic question Woody Allen is presenting to his own agnostic humanistic worldview is: If you really believe there is no God there to punish you in an afterlife, then why not murder if you can get away with it? The secular humanist worldview that modern man has adopted does not work in the real world that God has created. God “has planted eternity in the human heart…” (Ecclesiastes 3:11). This is a direct result of our God-given conscience. The apostle Paul said it best in Romans 1:19, “For that which is known about God is evident to them and made plain in their inner consciousness, because God has shown it to them” (Amplified Version).
It’s no wonder, then, that one of Allen’s fellow humanists would comment, “Certain moral truths — such as do not kill, do not steal, and do not lie — do have a special status of being not just ‘mere opinion’ but bulwarks of humanitarian action. I have no intention of saying, ‘I think Hitler was wrong.’ Hitler WAS wrong.” (Gloria Leitner, “A Perspective on Belief,” The Humanist, May/June 1997, pp.38-39). Here Leitner is reasoning from her God-given conscience and not from humanist philosophy. It wasn’t long before she received criticism.
Humanist Abigail Ann Martin responded, “Neither am I an advocate of Hitler; however, by whose criteria is he evil?” (The Humanist, September/October 1997, p. 2.). Humanists don’t really have an intellectual basis for saying that Hitler was wrong, but their God-given conscience tells them that they are wrong on this issue AND THEY HAVE NO BASIS FOR DEFENDING THE GOLDEN RULE. ABOVE WE READ mudfishin say “It’s common sense, it’s simple human morality…” BUT I KNEW Gloria Leitner WOULD BE CHALLENGED BY A FELLOW HUMANIST WHO THOUGHT THROUGH THEIR WORLDVIEW WITH A LOGICAL MIND, AND SURE ENOUGH IT HAPPENED.
Solomon showed us in the first 11 chapters of Ecclesiastes what the world “under the sun” without God in the picture looks like and it forces one to embrace nihilism.(See previous post on this about Solomon’s search.) However, the atheist has to live in the world that God made with the conscience that God gave him. This creates a tension. The agnostic Carl Sagan felt the tension too.
What does Dr. Sagan have Dr. Arroway say at the end of the movie Contact when she is testifying before Congress about the alien that communicated with her? See if you can pick out the one illogical word in her statement: “I was given a vision how tiny, insignificant, rare and precious we all are. We belong to something that is greater than ourselves and none of us are alone.”
Dr Sagan deep down knew that we are special so he could not avoid putting the word “precious” in there. Francis Schaeffer said unbelievers are put in a place of tension when they have to live in the world that God has made because deep down they know they are special because God has put that knowledge in their hearts.We are not the result of survival of the fittest and headed back to the dirt forevermore.
I would love to hear from any atheist that would present a case for lasting meaning in life apart from God. It seems to me that the British humanist H. J. Blackham was right in his accessment of the predictament that atheists face:
On humanist assumptions [the assumption that there is no God and life has evolved by time and chance alone], life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does notis a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance andends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, oneafter another they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads to nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere. . . It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all . . . such a situation is a model of futility (H. J. Blackham et al., Objections to Humanism (Riverside, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1967).)
Woody Allen’s film does a great job of showing the need for the “enforcement factor.” One reviewer made it sound like the movie was unrealistic and Judah could have smoothtalked his way out of this. However, Woody Allen anticipated this objection and that is why he threw in the illegal financial dealings of Judah that his former girlfriend knew about. Now instead of just losing his marriage he may have to go to jail.