ATHEISM: Ray Comfort warns of its results

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Ray Comfort, co-host of the television program "The Way of the Master" and author of the new book "You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, But You Can't Make Him Think," discusses the challenge of atheism today with Baptist Press.

BP: Who are the atheists exercising the most influence in popular culture today?

COMFORT: There is a comparatively small minority of atheists in the United States (and Europe) who have learned they can strip us of our God-given liberties through the legal system. Add to that the fact that one in four professors in colleges and universities are either atheist or agnostic, and you suddenly have a growth of atheism unprecedented in history. What do you say when your 17-year-old writes and says, "Mom, Dad, after my first semester at college, I have to tell you that I don't believe in God anymore. Science has proven evolution to be true. The Bible is a book of fairy tales. There is no absolute right and wrong. I know this goes against your values, but I now believe in gay marriage and a woman's right to choose. I don't want to hurt you, but I have to be open and honest with you -- I'm moving in with my girlfriend. This doesn't change my love for you, and I hope you feel the same about me."

A 2007 survey in the United States showed that the number of 18- to 25-year-olds who were atheist, agnostic or nonreligious had increased from 11 percent in 1986 to 20 percent. Universities are pumping out atheists like there's no eternity. To help people answer atheism and Darwinism, we created a website called www.PullThePlugOnAtheism.com in which parents and others who are concerned can find short pithy articles and video clips that expose the foolishness of atheism and evolution. These can be freely e-mailed to others.

BP: The "New Atheists" present atheism as the worldview of intelligent people and critical thinkers. What are the intellectual shortcomings of the atheist worldview?

COMFORT: Atheists think of themselves as being intelligent. But if you are an atheist, you are saying that you have no belief in a God -- a Creator. Creation just happened. Everything you see -- all the different breeds of dogs (both male and female), all the different breeds of cats (both male and female), all the different fish in the ocean (both male and female), giraffes, elephants, cattle, sheep, horses, birds, flowers, trees, the sun, the moon, the stars, the four seasons, night and day, the marvels of the human body, the eye with its 137 million light-sensitive cells -- all these marvels of creation were made by nothing. They all just happened. That's atheism at its core. What an intellectual embarrassment!

Then the professing atheist has the unbelievable gall to consider himself intelligent and he thinks that science backs up his delusion. Think of the ludicrous language an atheist is forced to use. He can't say creation was "created" and he has to avoid saying everything has been "made." He will even say he has no beliefs -- that he is "without belief." His problem is that he hasn't thought his beliefs through. If he has any intellectual self-respect, he will move from the "nothing created everything" belief to the "something did it, but I just don't know what it was." And in doing so, he distances himself from the embarrassing label of "atheist."

BP: Are there real-life dangers inherent to embracing atheism? What are the implications of atheism for civilized society?

COMFORT: A wise man once said something like, "Most I fear God. Next I fear him who fears Him not." An atheist will lie to you and steal from you without qualms of conscience because he doesn't fear God. We have a generation who have given themselves to fornication, lying, theft and blasphemy. We have school shootings, violence, pornography, etc. and what's the common denominator? They lack the fear of God. Atheistic evolution completely removes God and moral accountability. This is a cancer that destroys a nation from the inside.

BP: Is debating the best way for me to lead an atheist friend toward Christ?

COMFORT: There's nothing wrong with debating, as long as we speak in love and in gentleness. We are to contend for the faith. However, it's important to understand the principles of biblical evangelism. When we speak to the intellect, we speak to the place of argument. But when we speak to the conscience, as Jesus did, we speak to the knowledge of right and wrong. This principle is the key to genuine revival. To learn how to do this, listen to "Hell's Best Kept Secret" on www.livingwaters.com.


Compiled by Baptist Press assistant editor Mark Kelly.

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