I went to the theater to watch a film that turned out to be a huge Christian melodrama against colleges. I was aware what it might be about, a student making a case for God, and I was curious on what arguments they would express to make the case ‘God is Not Dead.’ I went in there, sincerely expecting to hear something interesting and possibly new…
What the hell was I thinking?
Expecting to hearing something insightful, all I got was garbage. It’s a evangelic movie, claiming to be fair to both sides, except they get to choose the weakest arguments for one side and get to control this ‘psuedo-reality’ to make only one side look like the clear victors. Not only do they want to make the “intellectuals” look dumb, they attack the liberals, Muslims, vegetarians, colleges, and of course non-believers.
The makers and funders of this video base their motives for making this film on 37 court cases where Christian groups have battled universities over the right to assemble, disseminate literature and be officially recognized. *FACEDESK* I’m not seeing anything in here were poor Christian students are being forced to sign proclamations that “God is Dead” in Philosophy classes. So naturally, this whole video is one big melodrama based on no facts and fear.
Before going into the movie, I just want to take a moment to share something about the trailers. Two of the trailers that stuck out was Russel Crowe’s “Noah” and the film “Heaven is Real.” Go figure.
I don’t have to go into the Noah movie, science and history has already concluded that the Noah boat and flood story is complete fictional myth. But regarding the film “Heaven is Real” based on a book written by a guy who is convinced his son went to Heaven. The kid had a near death experience at a very young age. Later on, the kid says he recalls being over his body, seeing his mommy crying in one room, and his dad cursing God in another room. The kid says he went to Heaven, saw his sister who died in her mother’s womb, and saw his grandfather (who died before he was born), as well as met a few other people.
The one thing in the trailer that made me want hit my head on the theater seat in front of me, was when daddy asks the kid if he really did see grandpa. The kid says yes. So daddy gets a picture of grandpa and shows him, but the kid says everybody is young in Heaven. So what does the dad do? Rushes through old photos, picks one of grandpa as a little boy, and shows it to his son. The kid identifies it and says “yes, that is grandpa.” WELL NO SHIT!
I mean come one! People, use your heads! Dear Pops, why didn’t you use your head and pick out an old photo of a random stranger way back in the 1930’s or so, and ask the kid, “hey, is this grandpa?” I’ll bet you anything, with this little inkling of this thing called TESTING, I bet that this young kid would’ve identified that said stranger as “yes, that’s grandpa.” I don’t know if someone already did an investigation and critical review of this whole “Heaven is Real” story, but it seemed pretty clear to me with this “that’s grandpa” scene reveals this whole thing was just the parents leading on this kid into believing he did x, y, z.
Anyway, onward to the film “God’s Not Dead.”
***Note, I did not catch a lot of the names of the characters, so I will just name them by their role***
The movie opens in the nice morning on campus, and everybody is getting ready for the first day of school. We see the main protagonist, Josh Weaton, and his girlfriend walking across campus. I noticed that she is carrying two textbooks (Environmental Science and Calculus). They are on their way to class, but separate. Elsewhere, a Muslim girl is dropped off by her father. She is wearing a black half niqab, but takes it off once father is gone and she is on campus.
Elsewhere, a journalist wakes up late, rushes to make coffee and head out. She runs to her car, and the first thing we see from the camera angle, she has three bumper stickers which we can read clearly. They are Meat is murder, I am a humanist, and I <3 evolution.
But once we get to the car, her car window is smashed and her GPS stolen. She rushes off, calls her boyfriend at the office for directions. She is on her way to interview Willie Robertson from the tv series “Duck Dynasty.”
Back to campus, Josh walks to a long table, where college staff are assisting students getting their stuff ready. I am assuming they are getting their paper work done and their college ID cards. Doesn’t matter, because as soon as the staff assisting Josh learns he is taking Philosophy 150 as an elective, the staff member notices Josh’s cross. So he warns him to take another professor or another class. Josh asks why, and is told the professor and class will likely laugh and tear him apart. Says he will be entering a snake pit, it will be on par with the Roman Colosseum with lions. Josh laughts it off and decides to take the class anyway. Business is done and Josh leaves. BUT a few feet away, another student is getting help. His name is Martin and his is Chinese. All that happens is that once he hands over his papers, the staff member asks what does PRC stand for, Martin answers People’s Republic of China, and cut scene.
Elsewhere, Pastor Dave picks up his African Missionary friend from the airport, takes him back to his church near the campus.
Back to class. Prof. Raddison starts class. He provides a list of names on his board. They include (from the handful I can remember) Richard Dawkins, An Rynd, Sigmund Freud, Democritus, Noam Chomsky, David Hume, and Bertard Russel. Raddison says they are all atheist. Next he explains what atheism and agnosticism is. He says that atheism means “without belief in god” and agnosticism as without knowledge about god.
Raddison dances around why they wont talk about god, mainly because is just a pointless debate because it is settled, something he says every Sophomore knows, that God is Dead. Not that he died, he never existed. Raddison then asks students to write the words God Is Dead on a piece of paper and sign it. Josh refuses.
Raddison offers a challenge: Josh must do 3 twenty minute cases to prove god or drop the class. Raddison says he will be judge if Josh proves god. Josh says let the classroom judge. Raddison agrees, but says he will be his challenger. Raddison recommends the class read Russel “Why I am Not a Christian” and Rene Descartes “Method.”
In cafeteria, Josh’s girlfriend strongly recommends he does not accept the challenge. She stresses that he focus on passing the course, going to law school and following their plan for a life together.Muslim girl overhears this because she works in the school cafeteria.
Liberal journalist meets Duck Dynasty Willie Robertson and his wife outside a church. She says she is from “New Left.” Journalist says he expected her to be back at the house, barefooted and having another baby.She says that he has made a business of luring out animals to maim them. Willie says they don’t maim animals,
they shoot to kill. She asks if they are proud of what they kill animals. They says yes. Willie says he wont eat a live animal, claiming THAT would be cruel. She wants to know what they think about other people being upset that they pray on every tv show.
Willie says that if they don’t like it change the channel. He says money, fame, everything is temporary but God is eternal.
Muslim girl is ready to get picked up from school. As she puts on her half niqab, a pretty girl walks by and says “Your beautiful, you should not have to hide.” Muslim says her father is very traditional. He picks her up. he tells her it may be hard to live amongst others not like her. He says they may be happy, but they do not worship God and they do not give God the respect and praise He deserves. Says he loves her. During the whole talk, she barely ever looked at him except to say “love you too.” Rather she looked watery-eyed as she looked out the window.
Josh goes to a local church. It is empty. Until Pastor Dave walks out, and they talk. Josh is wondering if he should do this or take the advice of his girlfriend and rest of his family and just stick to the plan, even though he would have to sign a paper he does not agree with. Dave talks about Matthew 10:32-33. Dave encourages Josh to do this, because Dave reckons that not a single student in that class goes to church, so this will be a great opportunity to expose Jesus to everyone. Josh concludes he is going to do this.
Next morning, Josh meets his girlfriend. He says Happy Anniversary, shows he has tickets to the same band where they met, but she notices his books and sees that he intends to do the debate. She is not pleased, walks away.
Josh starts by saying no one can disprove god. “Atheists say ‘No one can prove the existence of God.’ And they’re right. But I say, ‘No one can disprove that God exists. I see God in everything…I feel His presence everywhere…to me, I know that He exists.” Move on to Big Bang, explains it happened billions of years ago.Josh says that atheists claim that everything came from nothing. Quotes a theist who says that the description of the Big Bang, that all matter was created in 3 minutes in a huge flash of light, which he thinks is parallel to Genesis “Let There Be Light.”
Then a student quotes Richard Dawkins, asking Josh where did God come from? Josh answers God did not have a beginning, then replies he would ask Dawkins “if the universe created us, who created the universe?”And here, Raddison quotes Stephen Hawking, saying that the universe is self creating, spontaneous. Josh has no response. Smug Raddison mocks Josh “oh, you just haven’t heard about it?”
Class ends, but outside the class, angry Raddison says to Josh “do you think you are smarter than me?” Raddison warns Josh that if he continues to be this way, Raddison will make sure Josh doesn’t get a law degree.
Josh then meets his girlfriend elsewhere on campus, she heard of what happened. They break up. Josh says that she keeps making decisions for him.
Muslim girl goes home. She is listening to Christian fundie Franklin Graham on her iPod. Her younger brother finds out, she is scared and asks him not to tell Papa.
Journalist goes to doctor. He tells her she might have cancer and will have to take an MRI and treatment immediately.She later meets her boyfriend at dinner – I don’t remember his name, but I got one for him: Asshole. Asshole says he was made partner, she tells him she has cancer. He doesn’t respond. Instead, he breaks up with her, saying she should not have done this, as if she broke some contract. He is an asshole who doesn’t believe in love, says relationships are just helpful to get both parties what they want. (Now you understand why I call him Asshole)
Raddison wife calls her brother, turns out it’s the Asshole. She tells him to visit mom. He doesn’t want to, she has dementia. Call ends, Raddison comes home. They are a couple. She is a christian, but they agree to not talk about it.
At the campus library, Josh is looking for books. He meets a fellow classmate, Martin. Martin asks Josh why he is doing this. Josh answers, “Jesus is my friend” and is sticking up for him.
Josh says he was not able to answer the last question from the last presentation, then brings up John Lennox, a mathematician. Lennox says Hawking’s explanation for the universe creating itself is circular reasoning. Josh says “its like me saying spam is the best food in the world because no other time in history has any other food been the best.”Raddison asks if Josh is seriously questioning the brilliance of Hawking? Josh says that he just agrees with Lennox that Hawking’s logic is faulty. Josh also notes that Hawking said on page 5 that “philosophy is dead.” challenges Raddison if he is to take Hawkings word on everything, he should cancel this class.
Pastor Dave meets Raddison’s girlfriend. She is having some trouble with Raddison. Dave says that she may not have worth to other men, but at least you are worth a lot to the master of all creation, who died in pain just for her.
Back to debate.
Josh talks about “Darwinists” saying they haven’t answered the origin of life. Says they speculate that lighting hit a hot soup which formed life, but says it is not that simple. Then Josh quotes Charles Darwin “nature does not jump.” Then Josh quotes Lee Strobel’s 24 hour analogy. So where did life come from? Josh concludes with the story of Genesis, that every animal was created after their kind.
When everyone leaves the classroom, Raddison applauds that Josh, saying “lies, lies, and lies.”Josh asks Raddison what happened to him? Raddison says he was 12 when his mom died of cancer. She foolishly laid there, praising the same being who was strangling her to death. Raddison notes that most atheists were once Christians, until they unveiled themselves and were no longer blind to see what the world really is. Raddison says a god who allows people to die does not deserved to be worshiped.
Elsewhere outside of class, Martin is talking to his father in Chinese. Martin mentions that they discussed God in Philosophy class. He tells his son to not go there, because someone might be listening and there was some concern for Martin’s brother.
Liberal journalist learns she definitely has cancer. Back at her home, she tries to type. When she gets to the part to explain her absence, she says she will die. Then she breaks down crying in agony.
Elsewhere, Muslim father discovers that his daughter is listening to Christian material. He yells at her, and hits her twice. He yells at her in Arabic. She refused to say something in Arabic, but cries “no Papa, Jesus is my savior.” So he picks her up and throws out his daughter. Muslims girl goes to Pastor’s church. We learn she was secretly a Christian for about a year. Now she has nothing. Pastor tells her about Paul, how he had nothing and everything, but he always had Christ. Christ has seen her struggle, and will help her in her future.
Raddison’s girlfriend decides to leave him. He says he will not allow it. She says it is not his choice, and leaves.Raddison gets angry. Meets Josh on way to class, says he will now get involved in the debate.
Subject of Evil. Josh says there is evil because there is free will.
Raddison laughs, says next Josh will talk about moral absolutes – to which Josh jumps on and says there are moral absolutes. Makes a connection about cheating on a test. He could do it, but who says it’s wrong to do it? Says atheists have no basis for morality. Josh says all discussion about right and wrong goes back to god. No morality without good. Quotes someone that says Otherwise everything is permissible. Everything is meaningless.
Things get heated. Josh begins raising his voice, saying that Raddison is demanding students not to believe. Forcing them to sign a paper that says God Is Dead. Josh says Raddison is anti-theistic.
Then Josh asks why do you hate God, even when science supports his existence? Raddison says god took everything from him, that’s why he hates god. Josh replies, “how can you hate something that doesn’t exist?”
All the class stands up (except for one big guy) and they all say “God is Not Dead.” Raddison walks about of the class.
Outside class, Martin meets Josh and thanks him.
The Pastor Dave and his African missionary are about to get in a car. But before they get in, the missionary says to have faith that this car will start. They get in, and it starts.
Asshole meets his mother. Says that she is the nicest person he has ever known, and he is the meanest. He says you have prayed and believed all your life. And yet he sits there successful and healthy and she is there with dementia. She says sometimes the Devil makes people succeed to turn people away from God. And he keeps them away until it is too late and god has shut the door.
At the Hastings Convention Liberal woman storms into the Newsboys room. Asks for an interview. She asks them why they sing about god and jesus as if they are real people. They answer, to them, they are indeed real people.They ask her where does she find hope?They guess the reason why she is there is a sign that she is hopeful.
Raddison has some change of thoughts. He tries to call his ex, but is unable. Then he learns about the Newsboys concert, and heads off thinking she will be there. Raddison rushes off to concert, but the it starts raining. At a corner, Dave and the missionary are in traffic. Raddison appears at their corner, crosses the pedestrian and gets hit by a car. Pastor Dave and Missionary get out of their car and they rush to help him. But Raddison’s ribs are broken and he will bleed internally to death. Raddison says he does not want to die and he is scared. Dave asks him if he knows about Jesus. Raddison says he is an atheist. Dave says that god showed mercy because that car might have killed him instantly, but rather kept him alive long enough to hear about Jesus. Dave asks prof if he will “take the chance” to start again? Raddison says yes. Dave asks do you accept Jesus, to cleanse your sins. Raddison says yes then dies.
Back at concert. Everyone is singing. But before last song, a “friend” of the Newsboys Band appears on the Big Screen. It is Willie Robertson. Willie tells everyone to send a text to everyone they know. Say “God isn’t Dead.” Everyone at the concert sends out a text. One reaches dead Raddison’s phone (sent by his ex-girlfriend at the concert). Dave find’s Raddison’s phone on the street, reads it, and smiles. He hands it to the missionary. Missionary says it is a good night, even with a moment of pain, because there is much joy in Heaven.
Now you know what happens in the movie, the sewage has been spilled and someone ought to clean it up, so it might as well be me.
I already mentioned that this film was motivated by court cases of Christian students wanting to assemble and pass out literature, but not once was this the case in this melodrama film. Instead, as you read, it was giving the implication that colleges are forcing students to sign papers that says ‘God is Dead’ which is not the real case.
The First Debate
First thing I must address, the burden of proof.
Typical Christian mental gymnastics where they think the “doubters” must make a case against something whose existence has never been proven to begin with. Maybe this photo will help you understand.
Next, the issue of the Big Bang. Naturally, some Christians on the “God’s Not Dead” Facebook page are angry that the movie hinted the universe is older than 6,000 years old.
Regardless, the only connection Christian Josh made with the Big Bang theory and Christianity was the one part of the Big Bang that says everything expanded in a “flash of light” and therefore that must mean Genesis got it right.
Josh bashes the Big Bang as an incorrect theory because it says “something came from nothing.”
And it get’s worse for Joshua, who said the Bible got it right on how the universe started. Joshua directed our attention to Genesis chapter 1 verse 3, misleading us to ignore the previous verse that destroys his entire argument in such a colossal embarrassing way. Genesis verse two says the Earth was without form and void, and “God separated the waters from the firmament.” I can go on and make a accurate case that the Genesis authors believed the sky to be just a dome, but I’d like to address the second elephant in the room: the water. The Hebrew word used in this verse is “מָ֫יִם – mayim” which means “water,” the same literal word used for the seas later mentioned in the same chapter in Genesis. Mayim is literal word for seas, oceans, floods, streams, rivers, and rain. It’s the word used that quenches thirst and bathes our bodies. So we are definitely addressing literal a body of water, H2O, existing before everything else that was created according to Genesis. For those who say this passage is symbolic or metaphorical, despite it using literal words, allow me to point out that there is no indication or any criteria that any of this is being symbolic or metaphorical. But if we are going to argue that this phrase is metaphorical for no reason, why stop there? To be consistent we would have to argue that everything else in Genesis is being metaphorical, including the part of there being a supreme God and the story of creation as a whole.
But that not being the case, and that we are dealing with a literal word to represent water, let’s get to the meat of the argument. Now listen carefully as I explain why this piece is significant and fatal to Joshua’s position, because I will simultaneously argue why the origin of the universe does not require a God to explain it as well as demolish his first argument.
To begin with, all of the matter in the universe is a condensed form of energy. We know this from mass energy equivalence (E = mc²), and we have been able to convert one to the other with two nuclear forces by the manipulation of qluons, W+ and W-, and Z bosons. All matter comes from energy, and energy in accordance to the law of thermodynamics, is eternal. These are also naturally occurring processes, the rule of these processes and the Big Bang Theory is by following inflationary epoch, approx. 10 to the minus four seconds after the Big Bang.
The expansion of the universe causes temperature to fall, to the threshold temperature of protons and quarks, the fundamental constituents of matter, is reached. Further expansion causes the temperature to drop further, allowing protons and neutrons to form, and there are your first Hydrogen atoms.
The first hydrogen atoms get attracted to each other under the force of gravity to form structures of extreme density and heat, eventually resulting in quantum tunneling and allows fusion to take place. This is how the first stars form, and fusion being the process that keeps stars burning by converting Hydrogen into other atoms.
This fusion that powers the stars allow heavier elements to form for the first time, such as Helium, Neon, Carbon, Oxygen, Iron, and so on. But when stars run out of fuel, they die and explode, this is called a supernova. These dying stars release all the heavy atoms within them across the universe. This is where for the first time that Hydrogen atoms can bond with Oxygen and form the first water molecules.
But according to Genesis, water existed first before God created light and stars. But thanks to science and cosmology, we know this to be outright impossible. Turns out Genesis, got it wrong 2,500 years ago and still has it wrong today.
The Second Debate
Next, they put Stephen Hawking on par like he is some kind of infallible Pope. “Do you seriously question the brilliance of Hawking?” Who thinks like this??? How about praising the man and talk about the FLIPPIN’ LAWS OF QUANTUM MECHANICS!
For the record, John Lennox is a creationist and a mathematician, not a physicist, biologist or even a theologian! And yet, Josh uses him to criticize Hawking.
And you can tell that this video is full of crap the moment they mention “Darwinists.” Only creationists use this incorrect term as a agenda-based slap against biologists.
The “24-hour analogy” used here did not originate with Lee Strobel. Strobel is just a parrot puppet of the Discovery Institute. Rather, this analogy was put together by Jonathan Wells, the guy who was chosen by his church to get a degree for the sole purpose of “destroying Darwinism” (not to mention his support for AIDS Denialism).
“Father’s [Sun Myung Moon’s] words, my studies, and my prayers convinced me that I should devote my life to destroying Darwinism, just as many of my fellow Unificationists had already devoted their lives to destroying Marxism. When Father chose me (along with about a dozen other seminary graduates) to enter a Ph.D. program in 1978, I welcomed the opportunity to prepare myself for battle” – Jonathan Wells
Basically, his argument tries to condense the timeline of Earth to a 24 hour clock. Bear in mind, this is BILLION YEARS condensed down to a 24-hour timeline. Wells tries to use these words games to make it appear that “mainstream science” says that life started in “20 hours after Earth started, there are only single celled organisms and yeast, until two minutes after the 21st hour BOOM the first animal forms appear.”
Sounds sudden doesn’t it? Well, until you realize that the very morphilogical specimens observed in the Cambrian are not observed today AND when you consider how long “two-minutes” is: ~10 million years with the Cambrian lasting an additional 40 million years. Doesn’t sound so “sudden” how does it?
One thing that we must not in this “debate.” They only focus on the timeline of life, but they never challenge the theory of evolution. There is no rebuttal to the mountains of evidence for evolution and common descent. Instead, all we are given is poetry from Josh’s beloved book of a cosmic genie creating life. (and this Josh guy thinks he is good enough to become a lawyer, my ass). This is not “proof.” It doesn’t show anything. It holds no more weight than quoting the Rig Vedas (which predates Judaism) on how old the world is and when the animals were first formed. And just like the Jews, the Hindu’s can read their own books and claim they were written by god and declare that these books are the “absolute truth.”
Sorry, this does not constitute for evidence. There is no evidence anywhere that animals and life on Earth was magically created by some cosmic wizard in the sky.
We know for a fact that all life shares a common ancestor. ERVs, atavisms, transitional forms, physiological, anatomical, and molecular vestiges, ontogeny and developmental biology, protein functional redundancy, convergent phenotypes, mobile genes, observed speciation, or the myriad methods of dating geologic stratigraphy, or any twin-nested hierarchy of phylogenetic clades. All of these are peer-reviewed and verified accurate evidence positively promoting evolution as well as directly disproving creationism. AND YET the Christians making this movie don’t dare bring any of it up, they purposefully choose to select none of it and leave it all out of this movie altogether to make it look like the Christian side has a leg to stand on (which it doesn’t).
The Third Debate
Evil and Free Will… oh boy, here we go.
My first thoughts when I hear this old argument, if Free Will is what caused Evil… then do Christians think that no Free Will exists in Heaven?
- If sin is a choice in heaven, you can still be immoral and harm other people. Thus making heaven an imperfect place.
- The only deterrent to evil behavior is fear of consequences and guilt. If heaven has no fear, guilt or consequences, what is stopping people from evil behavior?
- If God has the power to stop people from wanting to sin in heaven, why can’t he do it on earth?
If God makes it impossible to sin in heaven:
- Why not bypass earth and create all people in heaven? Does God get joy from watching people suffer? Why put his “beloved” humans on an imperfect planet? Is our existence on earth some sort of twisted game?
- If your free will taken away from you in heaven, how is that a reward? Do you become a slave with every day controlled like a mindless robot? If your free will is taken away, that makes you a prisoner.
Furthermore, this whole notion of “moral absolutes.” It is very simple to prove this is nonsense: does God say that X is bad simple because he says so, or does he say X is bad simply because it’s bad?
As far as morality goes, every fundamentalist needs to learn their philosophical history it was St. Thomas Aquinas that FORMED the notion of situational ethics.
It was through his writings that theism advanced philosophically in many ways (while of course he still had some nutter beliefs that we can easily find abhorrent, such as that hell still existed and was waiting for all sinners) at least he acknowledged the fact that situations can arise that can cause an action we would traditionally in a vacuum believe to be bad, all of a sudden be good.
A common example, would you lie to the Nazis about the Jews hiding in your attic, but of course the guy who summarized the very characteristics of the christian god used in philosophical arguments in favor of his existence TODAY clearly is just a relativist that wants everyone to do whatever they want.
Put in even better terms, let’s say that these fundamentalist’s are 100% right about god existing and there being a heaven and a hell for the sake of argument. Now what if I’m an insane person, who WANTS to go to hell? Well…it kind of follows that I should be sinning my ass off, shouldn’t I? Why should I keep obeying these laws if I don’t get sent to the place I want to go? Sure, I ought to obey those laws IF I want to go to heaven, IF I don’t want to go to hell, IF I don’t want to suffer God’s punishment, but those aren’t absolute normative facts. Those are situational as soon as you add in that, “You ought do X, IF Y.” it becomes situational and those are the ONLY kinds of normative facts that exist. In ANY world view.
Now all of that is attacking the theistic notion of divine command theory and moral absolutism to defend relativism, I’d have to ask why it is the case that one ought not obey the laws society gives them, even if we exist in a morally relativistic sense? Sure, I ought
not obey the laws IF I want to go to jail, but again, I’d have to have my values on such a level that it doesn’t even make sense. It makes total and complete sense to say, “Obey the laws of the land, because if you don’t, shitty things happen to you.” And doesn’t that sound familiar? “Obey the laws, or shitty things will happen to you”? Sounds like the threat of hell to me. Therefore, are Christians relativists?
Finally, this talk of “if there is no God, then everything is permissible” bullshit, as a friend of once said:
“If you don’t want to be held accountable for your crimes and easily get away with it, become a Christian.”
In the Christian religion, nearly all sins can be forgiven if you believe in Jesus and simply because you believe in Jesus. No matter how absurd the stories are, all you have to do is swallow whatever the priests serve or selling…and that’s it! You’re saved! So if you love sin, claim Jesus as your Savior. Yes there are passages in the Bible that say works are important too, but only in addition to faith. And those passages could be paraphrased as “believe what we tell you, so you will do as we say.” Submissive obedience and subservience to the priests is repeated throughout, but there are also passages that you are saved ONLY through your faith, not of yourselves. Meaning there is nothing you can actually do about it. Because as if says in Isiah 54:6, your good works are like filthy rags in the eyes of God. It does not matter how good or bad you are, you are not going to be held accountable for your sins. That is not what you are going to be judged on. There is only one criteria: all that matters is that you believe, and that you believe on faith (meaning that you have complete conviction without evidence). Remember, Jesus said “blessed he that has not seen and yet believed.” So morality IS NOT the issue. All that matters is whether you can believe the most outrageous claims imaginable, even from the least credible people possible, and believe it completely even when there is no good reason to believe it at all as you should. The saintly skeptic is cursed simply for being rational while the most naïve sinners can still be saved. You can break the Ten Commandments is you want to, you won’t go to Hell for that. In fact, God lists hundreds of Commandments, but he won’t give a damn if you break them. Leviticus 26 says that if you break God’s commandments he
will punish you in this life, not the next, by making your toil harder and your works fruitless.
Believers can be as vile as they wish – it doesn’t matter. Atheists can be the most moral people ever – it doesn’t matter. Morality doesn’t matter. Gullibility is the only criteria required for redemption. So if you love sin, and you don’t want to get killed for it, just say that you believe in Jesus and the Holy Ghost. Because the only real way to piss God off is not to believe in him.
Let’s listen to Steven Pinker’s story: “As a young teenager in proudly peaceable Canada during the romantic 1960s, I was a true believer in Bakunin’s anarchism. I laughed off my parents’ argument that if the government ever laid down its arms all hell would break loose. Our competing predictions were put to the test t 8:00 A.M. on October 17, 1969, when the Montreal police went on strike. By 11:20 A.M. the first bank robbed. By noon most downtown stores had been closed because of looting. Within a few hours, taxi drivers burned down the garage of a limousine service that competed with them for airport customers, a rooftop sniper killed a provincial police officer, rioters broke into several hotels and restaurants, and a doctor slew a burglar in his suburban home. By the end of the day, six banks had been robbed, a hundred shops had been looted, twelve fires had been et, forty carloads of storefront glass had been broken, and three million dollars in property damage had been inflicted, before city authorities had to call in the army and, of course, the Mounties to
restore order. This decisive empirical test left my politics in tatters…”
This Montreal strike seems to be a pretty good natural experiment to test the hypothesis that belief in God makes us good. The majority of the population of Montreal believes in God, so why didn’t the fear of God restrain them when earthly policemen were temporarily removed from the scene? Did the cynic H.L. Mencken get it right when he tartly observed: ‘People say we need religion when what they really mean is we need police.’
Why Do You Hate God?
Ask any atheist this, their answer would be the same as Josh’s finally response: you can’t hate something that doesn’t exist. Unlike Josh’s claim, the sciences don’t point to God’s existence, as I just demonstrated.
Often times, when Atheists make that point clear, Christians and other theists still lash at them as if Atheists somewhere hidden secretly believe that there is a god and that we are just angry at him. This is absolute nonsense.
Atheists like me, view God simply as a “book character.” Nothing else. And frankly, he is indeed an evil monster, and no mentally healthy or decent human being praises evil sadistic dictators in any story.
Whenever I say “I hate Voldemort” because of his reign of terror and immoral agendas, that does not mean that I secretly believe he exists. A child would understand that. And it is the same for whenever a atheist says the same towards God, he is just a evil book character.
The main beef we have is not with “God” but with the twisted individuals who worships such a monster, people who think that this evil tyrant is somehow a righteous being, and the same people who try to follow the “guide” supposedly set forth by this megalow maniac.
Here are a few examples I found from your average-day Christians on Facebook
A brief history lesson reveals what faith in such a being can produce: wars, crusades, Inquisitions, witch burnings, bastardization of science and Enlightment, and the list goes on and on. And the sad thing is, all of this still happens in the 21st century.
And to this notion that atheists only became atheists due to the loss of a loved one or something similar, let explain why this is completely wrong, but first note that the loss of a loved one is the very same reason why millions turn to religion all the time.
There are many examples, including MYSELF, where Christians became atheists without any traumatizing event or loss of a loved one. I became a Atheist in my Junior Year in High School simply starting with a simple thought about God, and from there the whole concept of God fell apart like dominos. I wasn’t convinced by science to disbelieve, in fact I never understood how the hell biology or quantum physics worked until a year AFTER I discovered I was an atheist. I did not loss a loved one, I did not get dumped in a relationship, none of my family members died or moved away, I did not lose my job… absolutely nothing happened to me. The ONLY thing that made me realize there is no god was simply mere thinking.
Last comments on the Film
Regarding the Duck Dynasty crew in this movie, of course this is just a set up due to recent events. While conservatives try to defend Duck Dynasty, they try to make the appearance that they are defending “religious freedom”…. but instead what they are defending is religious bigotry. Imagine your conservative politicians defending the KKK, because it is their “religious freedom” to hate gays and blacks. BUT ONE THING that all people should be aware of: Duck Dynasty are fake YUPPIES
To me, whenever someone says a 2,000 year old dead guy (whose historical existence has been put into question) is their “friend”… I think they need a huge reality check, because they are basically grown-ups with a imaginary friend.
One point I find totally ironic in this film: the Christians in this movie stress the ability to “choose.” Raddison’s girlfriend says he does not get to choose whether she leaves or not. Josh points the finger at Raddison, claiming he does not allow students to choose what to believe, and instead force his anti-theism on them.
So, Christians love the ability to choose…. but does their God agree? Does God give newborn babies the choice to be born in sin? Nope. You did not eat the forbidden fruit, but you get the punishment simply for being born. Where is your choice in that matter? Did you choose to be born a “criminal”? God could’ve just forgiven everyone, but instead he forces the punishment on everyone and everyone who is yet to be born, robbing them of their choice.
Regarding the part where Pastor Dave and his Missionary friend trying to get into a car that works. The Missionary says “have faith” that the third car they try will finally start.
SCREW THAT. You don’t have faith that the car will work. You want the car to work, you need technology, or at least a well educated and respectable auto guy to fix it and get it running.
Speaking of dumping faith and trusting science (cuz it works!), how
about that liberal journalist who discovered she had cancer, and got
scared to the point she jumped onto the religious bandwagon. But if you don’t want to die early due to cancer… PRAYER WON’T HELP A DAMN THING.
Seek cancer treatments, brought to you by science!!!
And I don’t know where to start with this whole “The devil makes people successful to turn them away from God.” There’s just no reasoning or winning when it comes to religion. If you are a super-rich Megachurch man, you’re successful because God wills it while the rest of your congregation is struggling with poverty. But if you are some successful non-religious CEO, then the Devil got you to where you are.
The last thing I have to comment on the dying scared atheist accepting Christ at his last moments. This kinda comes to show that Christianity does not care about your past, but even if you were a bad person you can still get into Heaven on your deathbed.
Of course, they try to portray “Jesus” as the final hope after death… but it is an empty promise. They speak of Heaven, but that is all they focus on. Imagine if Pastor Dave spoke to the dying Raddison, Dave asks Robbison if he has ever been baptized? Raddison says no, he is an atheist. Imagine in Raddison says “well, too bad for you, you will burn in Hell forever and endure unspeakable pain in a endless nightmare. You should’ve gotten baptized.”
You would see Pastor Dave as a total Asshole, and rightly so. But why is it that people say nice things to people who tell the dying that they will go to a place – a place that’s basic existence has not been proven in the first place????
It may be comforting, but to claim to know something you cannot know and do not know is ultimately a lie.
“Would you take that chance?” Ahhh, Pascal’s Wager.
BTW, what is your chances? What is the chances of Christianity being right?