Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Is it really that unreasonable?

Is it really that unreasonable and incomprehensible to believe that some people actually want evidence for claims before they will trust in them? This isn’t some revolutionary, radical idea that only the scummiest people on the planet, like atheists, should dare endorse. My problem is that many Christians frown upon atheists for the heinous offense of desiring some compelling evidence before wrapping their entire worldview around some epistemological stance. I personally would require extraordinary evidence before I swallowed what any religion proselytized. I know this is just a really shocking concept. Does this make me a criminal worthy of a thousand deaths? Yes, it does according to Christian dogma. I will go to my grave as a nonbeliever until I find evidence. I will change my mind in a heartbeat once that sound evidence is presented. This is what many believers fail to realize. They don't understand that most atheists would have no problem putting their trust in a religion if that religion had enough evidence to support it.

As John Loftus often quips, god knows exactly what I would require in order to believe. The Bible, in and of itself, isn’t convincing enough to believe in people walking on water or resurrecting from the dead. If it was, I would probably still be a Christian today (Although, god and I really need to talk about the stupid, nefarious shit he did to people in the Old Testament). And, as Jesus stated (John 14:12), we should be seeing even greater things today than before. Youtube or the local news could easily cover someone performing amazing feats that surpass--or at least equaled for fuck's sake--Christ’s purported miracles. Why were the disciples and Paul some of the few to get such an intimate glimpse of the supernatural? Where have these supernatural abilities gone to? If Jesus is in every believer, we can safely assume that he should be working mightily through his present-day disciples to continue the missionary work of converting the lost.

It certainly doesn’t help that every so-called faith healer has turned out to be nothing more than a counterfeit. This only further undermines my ability to believe. You have other Christians who believe that all the supernatural stuff just discontinued upon the closing of the canon of scripture. They put their trust in seemingly mundane “godly” interventions, like when god helps a surgeon perform well during a serious surgery. This seems to weaken the Christian message that was built almost exclusively on the miraculous. Indeed, nobody should have believed in this Christ back then if no miracles were presented and nobody would trust in Jesus today without such miracle stories.

My point is that there are plenty of opportunities for god to produce some sort of supernatural, miracle today that could be promulgated and demonstrated exclusively by Christians. This would eliminate the notion that some foreign god was responsible. The Bible frowns upon people requesting miracles (John 4:48). How much more important are such signs in the age of science? I suppose that the Bible threw this scripture in there because they knew that no such miracles occurred, and they needed to introduce their so-called trump card, faith.

Science makes faith an obsolete concept. In an age of scientific enlightenment, Christians and nonbelievers should demand more than stories to believe. We owe it to ourselves and the sciences to require that much. In nearly any other endeavor, most people would have no problem with you wanting evidence before devoting yourself to some cause. I would say that religion requires faith because it lacks any evidence. Faith, in the ANE, was held in the same high regard as science before we understood that real answers to seemingly impossible questions were attainable. Shouldn’t god understand that we are no longer living in such a primitive, pre-scientific state? It certainly doesn’t help that science has demolished the ability to believe in the majority of old testament stories--through biology, geology, and archaeology to name a few.


  1. Great reflections Harry. These are honest, reasonable questions that I have never received a satisfactory answer from any christian family member, pastor or sunday school teacher in my 30 years of living as a christian.

  2. That's about the same amount of time I was a Christian, including the younger years when you tend to follow the religion of your parents. I'm assuming that you are no longer one though. Thank you for the compliment!

  3. Hi Harry,

    No I do not identify as a christian anymore...I've been in a gradual state of disbelief since 2000. The cognitive dissonance was driving me insane. I am comfortable not knowing what I can't know and embrace what I can know. I appreciate your blog and your thoughts...I come to read them often.


  4. Thanks! It's good to know that people enjoy my blog. I'm no scientist or philosopher, but I have a wealth of experience at being neck-deep in the whole Christian ideology. I actually went to a church today with my best friend. It's so weird to see things from the outside now.