When You Encounter An Atheist For The First Time Part 1

Written by Victor Uyanwanne
RELIGION AND CHRISTIANITY
The Difference between Christianity and Religion

I have never met an atheist face to face before. But I was fortunate to encounter one who recently visited this blog and was kind enough to leave a comment.

I had just published on my blog a post entitled To Those Who Say There Is No God.” In the post, we construed an atheist as one who believes that there is no God. The following points were also covered in the post:

  • I am a Christian and so I believe there is God;
  • There are enough pieces of evidence within and around us to prove that God exists. And so I wondered how some people find it so easy to claim that God does not exist;
  • That according to the Bible, anyone who says there is no God is not wise;
  • That Jesus Christ Himself told us during His earthly walk that He is the ONLY WAY to God.

Following that post was a protracted online discussion with an atheist blogger who engaged me over his claim that there is no God. The full content of the online exchange between both of us has now been packaged into a five-part series to be posted on this blog, beginning with this one. (Note that instead of his real name, I will simply refer to the said atheist blogger as TAB.

The Atheist, TAB

I grew up “spiritual” with no religious training other than the random christianity events for holidays. As an adult, I became a Christian, then got into messianic christianity. Then I rejected christianity and became a Jew. Then I rejected that too. I can’t say with 100% certainty that there is no god, but I’m about as certain as saying there probably aren’t unicorns either.

Ultimately, it was my incessant needs to have questions answered. Religion couldn’t answer them. I found the natural world to provide a better source of understanding the world than a sky man watching me.

My Response

TAB, thanks for stopping by and for commenting. As you found out, engaging in the so-called Christian holiday events doesn’t make one Christian.

To be a Christian is to ‘know’ God. To know God, one has to begin with a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, which is based on faith.

It is not religion or religious training that can save anybody, but faith in Christ. Anyone who talks about being a Christian without a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is involved in mere Religion, not Christianity.

It is good that you have not come to that point of categorically saying there is no God. I hope I understood you well there? If yes, then I take that to mean that you still have an open mind about this ‘God exist or not’ stuff.

When it comes to ‘searching’ for Him, God speaking through prophet Jeremiah said, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13). This shows that anyone who seeks God with all his heart will find Him. You can say it is guaranteed!

I am not talking about religion in the common sense of it because religion is not what makes the difference. The difference comes from beginning a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

In my own case, I found that knowing God through Jesus Christ has helped me [to get] answers for the questions that most troubled my heart. So if you don’t mind, I would gladly recommend that you establish a PERSONAL relationship with Jesus Christ. Only then will some things begin to add up for you.

You said the natural world have helped your understanding [more] than the Man in the sky. First, we believe that God put the natural world in place too. In fact, the Bible has it that “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” (Psalm 19:1). Although some people do not agree, nature itself speaks eloquently of the existence of God.

Simply put, the natural world was created by God. “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” Romans 1:20.

Secondly, my own concept of God includes the fact that He is inside of me through the Holy Spirit, not some unimaginable being out there in the sky as you put it. I totally understand if the last statement didn’t make any sense to you.

In conclusion, let me add that what God offers us is a close personal relationship with Him through Jesus Christ, not religion. This is what true Christianity is all about.I once heard a preacher explain it like this:

Religion is man[kind] attempting to reach God, whereas Christianity is God reaching out to man[kind].

Understanding this simple analogy will make a whole lot of difference in anyone’s life.

If you have the time, you may visit the link [below] for some [more] answers:  http://www.everystudent.com/features/isthere.html?gclid=CKjkj8Hg38kCFScFwwod0dILxg

PS: To all my readers, please let me know what you think – whether as a Christian or as an atheist.

Up Next: When You Encounter An Atheist For The First Time Part 2

 

 

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