Please forgive the disturbing nature of what I am about to post . The topic I have been following lately is a disturbing one that I feel needs to be addressed in a more reality based context . The atheist cannot give an answer , simply because he has none to give .
Monthly Archives: May 2010
This is from Ravi it supports what I am trying to say.
What motivates men to be moral if not an absolute outside of themselves ? Why should I listen to the whiny platitudes of the anemic moral agnostic / atheist ? If life is fleeting and then no final justice then I am more inclined to get mine then care whether or not you get yours . This is my heart without the presence of my God. A few nights ago I listened to a debate with Bart Ehrman a very articulate and educated atheist . In his closing statements he talked about the good life in the midst of a suffering world . He said we should eat steak and drink fine wine , we should give to the poor , we should help our neighbor , we should sacrifice for the starving , oh and we should eat chocolate . While I share his sentiments for chocolate and fine wine and red meat I found myself asking this question over and over again . “Why?” Why should I help the starving ? why should I give to the poor ? Why in the world should I care what happens to my neighbor ? I mean unless it suits me ? Who in the hell is Bart Ehrman to presume to tell me or anyone else what we should do in light of an fleeting life that is completely over when it’s over ?
While I think it is ridiculous to believe that all atheist are doomed to become moral cannibals or degenerates . I believe it is equally ridiculous to believe that some wont , or that the ones who do are wrong somehow in their conclusion. I have no desire apart from my belief in the love of God to be good to any soul . Not for the reasons you may think. Hell is not my motivator I don’t wanna be good or kind because I fear punishment . No indeed It is His compassion to me that motivates me to love . It is His person that changed my self centered worldview not fear of Him . I actually admire and want to be like Jesus , because I believe He is the only one who knows what it means to be human.
However if he is a myth , a dream , a fairytale , then well thats another story isn’t it ? Without Him my worldview will go back to where it was long ago. ” Look out for number one cause aint nobody gonna do it for you .” I like red wine , I might hurt my neighbor to get more , I might not , but no one can tell me definitively that I should do either. I might eat good steak , I might take from the weak to get my good steak , But to hell with any man who would tell me I shouldn’t . Spare me the “It’s better for our survival if we help each other” tripe . Why do I care if we survive ? If it’s over when it’s over and no final makin right of wrongs , and no true example of what good is since that is up to the individual , then I dont care if you survive or not . I mean unless your hot . then I might care for a little while. Mostly I would be indifferent I would love and help my friends as longs as I wanted to but only because I wanted to not because I should. My point is simply this . The idea that atheist can’t be moral is false. The truth that they have no authority to stand against tyranny or injustice is self evident. They can still stand against it but only because they don’t like it , not because it is actually wrong. The fact that they have no right to tell any one period what is good or bad is equally self evident , they can say this is how i ought to behave in my society , but that is all , and if I am strong enough to change society… well ? The atheist can say he doesn’t like what Hitler or Stalin or “George Bush ” did but he can’t say they are evil or wrong . in fact they of all people ought to be respected by the atheist , simply because they had the power and strength to dictate their morality as law for millions while we are resigned to ourselves.
So again my question is Why ? why If there is no moral absolute outside of us , why should we be nice or even care unless it suits us to be ?
Why should I listen to the whiny platitudes of the anemic moral agnostic / atheist ?
“It is not enough that Jesus died. Someone must apply the blood of Jesus to the national sin of USA.”
This is a direct quote which may be found in the teaching notes of IHOP as “The Call Kansas City”—The Doctrine of the Shedding of Innocent Blood—by Lou Engle.
Lou Engle is an itinerant prophet who is affiliated with IHOP and The Call and appears in the movie “Jesus Camp”. With no further explanation Lou Engle makes this statement referring specifically to America’s national culpability for abortion. His solution confuses the accomplishment of atonement and application of atonement. Would a Savior who is able to accomplish our redemption also be able to apply it?—(John Murray wrote an excellent book called Redemption Accomplished and Applied). Apparently Lou thinks that the application of Jesus’ blood for an atoning work is somehow dependent upon some sort of NT priestly ministry. We are speaking of a vicarious national atonement here people.
“The raising up of priestly ministry is to bring forth the blood of the Lamb on behalf of shed blood. Individual guilt and communal guilt must be atoned for”.
Does he want to start convening mass? That is what these types of statements imply to me. That is a far cry from using Scripture to promote intercession. Lou likes to use Scripture. He says, “that the blood of all the prophets which was shed from the foundation of the world may be required of this generation, (Lk. 11:47-50). Lou mostly misapplies OT passages but he manages to misapply the one in Luke 11 above as well. The Lukan passage is dealing with indictment against the nation of Israel (specifically the religious leaders) who have abandoned the weightier matters of the law and murdered God’s messengers. He disregards the historical context and the audience of the text in order to promote a priestly application of atonement blood for national sin. This necessarily means an interpretive analogy between God’s covenant nation Israel and the USA. I don’t remember ever reading about God’s covenant with America. Israel yes, the church yes. But, America? Hmmmm….
Now I don’t have a problem with moral culpability. People who are complicit in abortion are accountable before God. But, God does not judge America as he does the nation of Israel. Israel is a type of the church, it foreshadows the NT covenant community. America is not a new Israel. The day of atonement typology entailing a mass national expiation is fulfilled only (and once for all) in Christ for the church. This act of redemption accomplished and applied is foreshadowed in the Day of Atonement under the Old Covenant. While this yearly ritual was specifically for the nation of Israel, the Calvary event WAS (note the past tense) the premise of intercession for all time.
It seems that Mr. Engle is more interested in his agenda than a Protestant orthodox view of soteriology. Is it not enough that Jesus died? Is atonement an activity which is fulfilled through the church’s vicarious application of Christ’s blood via intercession? I’m sure that Lou wants to wake the church from ‘a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest’. But I don’t think that a naïve, modernized extrapolation of OT cultic practice, nor Roman Catholic conceptualizations of ecclesial mediation are the answer. Do we plead the blood of Jesus over America to expiate sin or do we preach the gospel of Jesus to America proclaiming that HE HAS expiated sin?