Posts Tagged ‘atheism and Easter’

When I was in college, I visited a nearby law school to hear Madelyn Murray O’Hair, the famous atheist, speak.

I didn’t know what to expect.

Would she end up being articulate, caring, and thought-provoking?  Would she decimate the arguments for the existence of God and convert students to her cause?

As it turned out, there was nothing to worry about.

Her talk was more like a rant … not directed at Christians, but at the federal government … because she believed that her atheist organization should receive tax-exempt status from Uncle Sam.

But in the process, MM O’Hair came off as bitter, vulgar, mean … and utterly ugly.

Since she was the Poster Child for American Atheism, I left the lecture unconcerned about her ability to attract new converts.

But 40 years later, the atheists have regrouped.  They are better organized, have some money, and appear to be growing in numbers.

In fact, atheists have been placing signs in strategic places all over our land, proclaiming:

Nobody died for our sins

Jesus Christ is a myth

On this Good Friday, let me make three observations about this statement:

First, Jesus is not a myth.  He was really born, really lived, and really died.

You can ignore Him … hate Him … mock Him … or worship Him … but to claim that He didn’t exist is purposeful ignorance.

The Bible isn’t the only ancient document that states that Jesus existed.  I have a book called He Walked Among Us by Josh McDowell that documents Jesus’ existence from non-biblical, historical documents as well.

The truth is that many atheists wished that Jesus had never existed.

Why not?

Because they don’t want to acknowledge His Lordship … His church … His influence … or His commands.

Atheists exist, and so did Jesus … so the statement that “Jesus Christ is a myth” is itself mythological … as well as illogical.

Second, Jesus really died.  Again, it’s all a matter of history.

If He really lived, then He really died.

Both Luke and Acts state that Jesus ascended to heaven after His death and resurrection.

He didn’t ascend before He died but after He died.

Jesus of Nazareth died the same kind of death as hundreds of His countrymen … execution by crucifixion.

The Easter Bunny is a myth, so he/she can’t die.

But because Jesus truly walked this earth, He just as truly died … and then was buried.

So the statement, “Nobody died for your sins” might be true … except that the atheists’ intention is to claim that Jesus couldn’t have died for any meaningful reason because He never lived to begin with.

But He did live and die … just as every atheist will.

And that leads me to my last observation about their statement:

Finally, Jesus died for everyone’s sins … whether they receive Him or not.

Jesus died … that’s history.

Jesus died for my sins … that requires faith.

I don’t think atheists want Jesus to exist because they don’t want to acknowledge that they commit any sins … or at least, any sins that might make them account to a higher power.

Most people aren’t atheists for intellectual reasons, but for moral reasons.  They only want to be accountable to themselves.

But they seem to intimate that Christians do commit sins … especially the sin of saying that Jesus lived and died for people’s sins.

Personally, I think it takes far more faith to believe that Jesus didn’t live and didn’t die than to say that He did.

And if He did die, the record is clear: He didn’t die for His own infractions.

Like millions of Christians past and present, I believe that Jesus died for my sins … that He paid the penalty for my offenses against God by offering Himself as my substitute.

He loves everyone … including you … whether you love Him in return or not.

His love extends to atheists … agnostics … the poor … celebrities … your friends and neighbors … and even politicians.

You can’t stop Jesus’ love.  Just as we can do nothing to make Him start loving us, we can’t do anything to make Him stop loving us.

And whether or not you asked Him to die for you … or wanted Him to die for you … He died for you anyway.

And as long as you live, if you ever want to receive that love … demonstrated by His death for you … He will forgive you of all your sins.

So let me rephrase that atheist sign that’s going around:

Jesus died for your sins

Jesus Christ is reality itself

Let me share with you my favorite Easter verses from 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 … and I still have never yet heard a sermon preached on them:

For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.

And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised again.

If Christians truly believe that Jesus lived … died … and rose again … then believers must not live for ourselves, as atheists tend to do.

We must live for Jesus instead.

How alive are you spiritually right now?

That’s the best reflection of what you truly believe.




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