Angry, audacious, asinine atheists profess loudly to all who will listen–even to those who won’t–that God does not exist. They are especially overbearing and offensive even obnoxious during the Christmas season. Atheists also do not believe in Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, and Peter Pan but they do not try to convince others of their non-existence. However, I don’t believe in atheists and neither does God. The Bible clearly teaches that God loves the world and wants everyone to place faith in Him to guarantee forgiveness of sins and a place in Heaven. Atheists don’t exist because God will not permit it.
Man was created in the image of God so within every man is a desire and capability of knowing God. No matter how pagan or how wicked people become, they never lose that ability to know God; however it is possible to know about God and not know God. People can know Him only through faith in Christ.
Philosophers and anthropologists have long speculated why religion is so prevalent in every society and has been since the beginning of time. The answer is rather simple: a loving God wanted to make Himself known to His creatures so He put a question inside every living soul: “Where did all this come from and why am I here?” That is an internal revelation of a sovereign God as John 1:9 says of Christ, “which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.”
Atheists have been discomforted lately with the possibility that the brain is wired for a knowledge of God. God’s Brain by Lionel Tiger who is the Charles Darwin Professor of Anthropology at Rutgers University and Michael McGuire suggest that faith is rooted in the very structure of the brain. So, it appears that faith, at least in something, is a part of life.
Additionally, there is an external revelation of God in nature. God made it obvious in nature that He existed as recorded in Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” As men tremble while watching leaping lightning during a dangerous thunder storm; as men watch the sun rise over the Atlantic; as men observe the intricacies of the hummingbird and monarch butterfly; as men watch the birth of a child; all are confirmation of a sovereign, all-powerful God.
While external revelation is not enough to provide personal salvation since only trusting in Christ will do that, it does provide enough information to produce a thirst for more information. However, rebellious, sinful man has often rejected the knowledge of a sovereign God and stooped to the construction and worship of idols.
The internal revelation is recorded in Romans 1:18, 19 declaring, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.” Clearly God has revealed Himself to all men who hold the truth in unrighteousness even New Atheists such as Richard Dawkins. Someone call Dick and tell him he does believe in God.
Rom. 1:20 reveals, “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.” Notice that the things of God are “clearly seen” from the creation of the world and men are therefore without excuse. At the Judgment, men will not be permitted to argue that they were in ignorance.
It seems the writings of prominent philosophers such as Socrates, Plato, Seneca, etc., indicate they knew much more of the Divine nature than they thought safe or prudent to reveal to others. They were also aware of the Hebrew nation and their Scriptures and rejected them. Those judicious men, aware of their cultural and political circumstances, refused to honor God and turned to the most absurd idolatries and superstitions. Consequently, they degraded themselves by the most vile, vain, and vulgar deeds.
Most people of the ancient world and into the first century refused to profit by the light they had and chose darkness rather than the light. Because they refused to live up to the knowledge they possessed, they died in darkness.
However, men may argue that they know whether or not they believe in God; after all, they are the final authority as to what they believe. But they are not. Men have a deceptive heart and cannot know it according to Jer. 17:9. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Plus they have a rebellious nature so they cannot be trusted to declare what they believe. And people must understand that saying it a thousand times does not change the fact that they do believe in God. We were created with a need for God and a desire for Him even though sin gets in the way.
Gibbon remarked, that “the philosophers regarded all the popular superstitions [religions] as equally false; the common people as equally true; and the politicians as equally useful.” This was probably a correct account of the prevalent feelings among the ancients. Cicero, a few years before Christ, showed that they had the knowledge of one God: “There is something in the nature of things which the mind of man, which reason, which human power cannot effect; and certainly that which produces this must be better than man. What can this be called but God?” Again, he wrote, “What can be so plain and manifest, when we look at heaven, and contemplate heavenly things, as that there is some Divinity of most excellent mind, by which these things are governed?”
There is no doubt that the ancient Greek and Roman philosophers were convinced of God’s existence but thought it was the better part of wisdom to keep it from the hoi polloi. All for the stability of the state. Often the ruling dictator accepted the legislature’s award of personal deity upon him but no one really believed it.
Most people have always done what they knew to be wrong and refused to do what they knew to be right proving the whole world is guilty before God. Faith in Christ satisfies the inner craving in every human heart that mere religion cannot satisfy.
No, neither God nor I believe in atheists. Atheists don’t even believe in atheism.
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.