I’m getting a little tired of these Atheists who are trying to cram their religion down America’s throat.
Just in recent weeks, we’ve had the group American Atheists posting anti-Christian and anti-Mormon billboards, Richard Dawkins telling Playboy magazine that Jesus is “barking mad,” and now Bill Nye the science guy telling parents that not believing in evolution is holding back the world.
Talk about a bunch of drama queens.
For people who try to couch their criticisms of other religions, particularly biblical religion, in terms of science, celebrity Atheists and their lobby groups show their ignorance on an amazingly regular basis.
The cheap political stunts like the billboards from American Atheists are just plain irritating. Erected near the site of the Democratic National Convention, the billboards took aim at orthodox Christianity and Mormonism.
According to CNN, the billboards were meant to criticize the beliefs of Mitt Romney and Barack Obama, though if that was the intent, American Atheists should have skipped the one on Christianity and gone after Islam. They never would do that because of the easily foreseeable reaction. Presumably, taking on Paul Ryan’s Catholic beliefs was safer.
Regardless, the Atheists took down the billboards over claimed threats.
The one against Mormonism said, “God is a Space Alien, Baptizes Dead People, Big Money, Big Bigotry.”
Against Christianity, the Atheists wrote, “Sadistic God; Useless Savior, 30,000+ Versions of ‘Truth,’ Promotes Hates, Calls it ‘Love.’”
And they wonder why people were upset.
Dawkins was being his usual celebrity know-it-all self when he spoke to Playboy, that bastion of intellectualism. According to the esteemed high priest of evolution, the evidence for Jesus as a historical person, never mind messiah, is “surprisingly shaky.” He’s evangelizing for his atheist faith, of course, but many people will believe him because he’s a famous professor promoted by the media.
Arguing against Dawkins’ spin, there are many historical figures whose existence is accepted on the basis of no more than a paragraph or a scrap of text. By contrast, the volumes of information in the New Testament alone, from multiple authors who do not appear to have collaborated, provide real scholars with a high level of confidence about Jesus of Nazareth’s historicity.
But there are always the “rational” atheists who want you to have to prove Jesus existed without resorting to any evidence in the Bible.
Even so, there’s extra-biblical testimony that Jesus did exist as a historical figure. Tacitus (Annals) and Seutonius (Lives of the Caesars) both make mention of Jesus, as do Flavius Josephus and the Talmud and Midrash. Other minor references are found in Pliny the Younger (Letter to Trajan), Mara Bar Serapion, Thallus (referenced by Julius Africanus), Celsus, Galen and Lucian.
The reference in Tacitus, who was definitely anti-Christian, is particularly interesting. Speaking about Nero and that well-known fire he was suspected of starting in Rome, Tacitus writes:
“Hence to suppress the rumor, he Falsely charged with the guilt, and punished Christians, who were Hated for their enormities. Christus, the founder of the name, was Put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign Of Tiberius: but the pernicious superstition, repressed for a time Broke out again, not only through Judea, where the mischief Originated, but through the city of Rome also.”
The only thing “surprisingly shaky” here is Dawkins’ claims of being smarter than everyone else.
Then there’s Bill Nye, the science guy turned Obama shill, complaining that creationists who dispute evolution are holding back science:
“When you have a portion of the population that doesn’t believe in that, it holds everybody back, really. … Evolution is the fundamental idea in all of life science — in all of biology.”
I’ve actually talked to a fair number of doctors, geneticists and other scientists about this very issue in my day, and you know what absolutely none of them have said? That they needed to know about evolution theory to do their work once they had graduated school.
But even supposing someone worked in such a field where knowledge of evolution theory was essential, would it really hurt to know alternative theories as well?
Only if you have elevated a scientific theory to the level of religious doctrine, as modern Atheists have done.
Surely a smart guy like Nye must realize there are different takes on evolution around the world, including some theories that dolphins, not apes, are most closely related to man.
(Apes all have 24 pairs of chromosomes, humans have 23, and dolphins have 22. The notion here is that it would be easier for a chromosome pair to “break,” producing an additional chromosome pair, than for two pairs to “merge.” Thus, humans could “devolve” from dolphins, and apes devolve from humans, more easily than the reverse.)
The bigger issue is Nye’s egoistic declaration that religion somehow holds back science, when it’s biblical religion that is the foundation of scientific thinking.
Without the idea of an eternal, consistent God who creates natural laws that reflect his own character, there never would have been a reason to explore the natural world and expect predictable results from it. What Nye fears is actually seen in the Muslim world, where Allah is understood to be capricious and likely to change his mind on a whim, making logic and scientific endeavors pointless.
Some of the most famous early scientists were Christian — people like Roger Bacon (scientific method and optics), Georgias Agricola (founder of metallurgy), Johannes Kepler (laws of planetary motion), Francesco Maria Grimaldi (diffraction of light), Blaise Pascal (mathematician), Robert Boyle (modern chemistry) and Antonie van Leeuwenhoek (discoverer of bacteria).
Of course, if Atheists really understood Judeo-Christianity as well as they claim they do, they wouldn’t likely be atheists.