In an earlier column I contended that contemporary atheists are angry at a God they claim does not exist, and the vitriol that characterizes their attacks on God and his flock can be traced to desperation. In this column, I show how atheists are attempting to cast themselves as intellectually superior to believers of any religion by adopting a new name. Just as homosexuals have attempted to improve their image by co-opting the word gay, atheists are attempting to polish their image by adopting the presumptuous label, bright (as in we are brighter than the rest of the world—especially believers).
In his book, I Never Thought I’d See the Day!, David Jeremiah quotes Richard Dawkins’ on the question of why atheists needed a new label: “Those of us who subscribe to no religion; those of us whose view of the universe is natural rather than supernatural; those of us who rejoice in the real and scorn the false comfort of the unreal, we need a word of our own, a word like ‘gay.’ You can say ‘I am an atheist’ but at best it sounds stuffy (like ‘I am a homosexual’) and at worst it inflames prejudice.” Clearly atheists know they have an image problem. The double entendre in their choice of “bright” is obvious. Not only is it a positive sounding word, but if atheists are bright, then the rest of us—particularly believers—must be dummies.
Are believers dummies? Apparently not according to the Harris and Gallup polling organizations. David Jeremiah summarizes the results of two polls—one taken by Harris, the other by Gallup—concerning the religious views of highly educated people in America, people who hold advanced degrees. Here are some of the results of these two polls showing what people with advanced degrees in America believe:
- 78 percent believe the soul survives after death
- 72 percent believe in miracles
- 64 percent believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ
- 60 percent believe in the Virgin Birth
- 55 percent believe in the Devil
- 53 percent believe in Hell
What atheists have never been able to accept is that refusing to believe in something does not negate the really of it. In other words, they cannot make God go away by just closing their eyes and pretending He is not real.
While David Jeremiah does an excellent job of using hard data to refute the atheist’s arrogant presumption of intellectual superiority, the best refutation is still found in Scripture. The most powerful intellect on earth amounts to little if its foundation is shifting sand, whereas the least intelligent man among us is on solid ground if his faith is in Holy Scripture. Atheists believe in the ability of man to reason, observe, and draw logical conclusions. Their faith is in man. Contrast the atheist’s man-centered belief system with Christianity. Christians, no matter how many or how few college degrees they have, believe in the truth of Scripture. Scriptural truths are solid and unchanging. Man-centered beliefs change as often as the weather.
In this regard, atheists are like the man who must cross a wooden bridge over a raging river. The bridge looks strong so he has faith that it will get him safely across. Unfortunately for him, the bridge’s planks—though they appear strong enough—in reality are all rotten. Consequently his faith in the bridge is going to land him in the river. This is the dilemma that all atheists face. They can claim to be brighter than the rest of us if that makes them feel better about themselves, but their faith in man—even though strong—is nothing more than strong faith in a weak plank.