Saturday, February 6, 2010
Temporal Consequences of Atheism for Christians
by Gary DeMar, Feb 02, 2010
There are temporal consequences for theists as there are eternal consequences for atheists. If as Christopher Hitchens believes Christianity is not good for the world, will laws be passed to outlaw or at least suppress religious expression? This has already been done in public schools. There are signs that such oppositions to religion are spreading:
[A] man talking to two willing strangers in a shopping mall was arrested because the subject of the conversation was God. The case developed several years ago when a youth pastor was arrested at the Galleria Mall in Roseville, Calif., for having a conversation about religion with two other people. Matthew Snatchko, who works with youth at his church, was interrupted in the middle of a conversation by a security guard. A second guard joined the confrontation and told Snatchko he was being placed under citizen’s arrest for “trespassing.” . . . Besides the ban on conversations with strangers about religion or politics, the mall also bans any clothing with religious or political messages.
It’s one thing to have a policy that prohibits proselytizing, standing on a soapbox and preaching, or carrying a sign around that says “Repent!” Malls are private property. We’ll have to see how the courts rule on this one, but the fact that there is such a written policy is frightening. If you live in an area where malls owned by these companies, you might want to consider shopping elsewhere. By all means let the company know why you no longer will do business there: Fear of getting arrested because you might happen to strike up a conversation with a stranger in the food court that leads to a discussion about religion.
Those who believe in God could be marginalized, and if atheists get their way politically, we might find some very bad laws passed. Here’s what prominent atheist Daniel C. Dennett wants to happen:
If you insist on teaching your children falsehoods—that the Earth is flat, that “Man” is not a product of evolution by natural selection—then you must expect, at the very least, that those of us who have freedom of speech will feel free to describe your teachings as the spreading of falsehoods, and will attempt to demonstrate this to your children at our earliest opportunity. Our future well-being—the well-being of all of us on the planet—depends on the education of our descendants.
If enough of these guys gain political power, will any of our children be safe? Could teaching falsehoods like creation be considered child abuse? It’s not a far-fetched fear. Hitchens broaches the subject in chapter 16 of his book God is Not Great: “Is Religion Child Abuse?” Doug Wilson comments, “Hitchens puts infant baptism, the learning of a catechism, the practice of confirmation, Sunday School lessons, and family worship into the same category that we use to describe the making of child pornography, starvation, locking up in closets, blacking eyes and breaking bones.” Nicholas Humphrey writes something similar, and Richard Dawkins is not far behind:
“So we should no more allow parents to teach their children to believe, for example, in the literal truth of the Bible or that the planets rule their lives than we should allow parents to knock their children’s teeth out or lock them in a dungeon.”
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Yikes! Atheists rail against theocracy, but they don’t see that their worldview is oppressively theocratic with no hint of restraint. Man is god, and man’s law must be imposed on every area of life in the name of Darwin through the power of the State using reason and science as the twin authorities. These revelatory pillars of evolution—the old and new testaments of their man-centered worldview—are as infallible in their eyes as the Bible is in ours. There is no question that this is the truth.
Education is used to promote their theocratic worldview. An academic setting is viewed as far less oppressive, a neutral, fact-alone approach to truth, if you will. The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) has issued a report that says British Columbia-based Trinity Western University falls below the standard of proper academic freedom because it requires that its faculty sign a statement of Christian faith before being hired. It has also put the organization “on a list of institutions found to have imposed a requirement of a commitment to a particular ideology or statement as condition of employment.” Just imagine if a Christian who did not believe in evolution applied to a state school. Do you think he would be accepted to teach in the biology department? I don’t think so.
 Bob Unru, “Mall to Christians: God talk banned!” (January 30, 2010).
 On the “flat-earth myth,” see Gary DeMar, America’s Christian History: The Untold Story (Atlanta, GA: American Vision, 1995), 221–34; Gary DeMar and Fred Douglas Young, To Pledge Allegiance: A New World in View (Atlanta, GA: American Vision, 1996), 75–82; Jeffrey Burton Russell, Inventing the Flat Earth: Columbus and Modern Historians (New York: Praeger, 1991).
 Daniel C. Dennett, Darwin’s Dangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meaning of Life (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1995), 519.
 Douglas Wilson, God Is: How Christianity Explains Everything (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 2008).
 Quoted in Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion (New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2006), 326.
 Charles Lewis, “Faith as a guide in higher learning: Can academic freedom exist in overtly religious universities?” (January 30, 2010): http://www.nationalpost.com/news/canada/story.html?id=2501821