Response to an Atheist Friend

Recently we had 28 people from an atheist group visit our church, then I went to their atheist meeting. One of the guys has written a first draft of a book about atheism. He was trying to get other members of his group to read it and give him feedback, but they weren’t, so I offered to do it. He is intelligent and makes some valid points in his book, including some complaints against Christians. I thought it might be interesting to share a few things he wrote, along with my feedback to him. Here’s one:

In his book he argues that we should have godless politics and society, explaining what he feels are the problems of a society that assumes God and includes any religious ideas. Then he says:

When you reject the Big Idea of God, all those kinds of societal distortions look like … well … distortions. It becomes possible to set up rules for society which do not have to be consistent with the needs of maintaining the power of religious institutions.  …  And you may have to rethink ethical and moral rules, tracing backwards to their origins and effects.

I responded:

But don’t you have to admit that societies have been set up rejecting the Big Idea of God, and they have committees some of the worst atrocities against humanity ever? Honestly, you not acknowledging that makes it seem like you’re trying to deceive your readers. Or, maybe worse, that you’ve deceived yourself. What you’re proposing has been tried, and it hasn’t worked. Admit that, and explain why, or I think you’ll lose any intellectually honest readers.

By the way, I realize full well that atheistic governments are not the only one’s who have committed atrocities. Some who claim to be Christians have also done awful things. That’s not my point. My point is that his claim that if you take the idea of God out of society, you’ll have a society that does it right just isn’t valid. It may sound it to some, but it’s been tried and it’s failed.