Pastor Jeff's
'Atheism'
Sermon Notes

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APRIL 1ST HOLIDAY
An atheist complained to a Christian friend, "Christians have their special holidays, such as Christmas and Easter; and Jews celebrate their holidays, such as Passover and Yom Kippur; Muslims have their holidays. EVERY religion has its holidays. But we atheists," he said, "have no recognized holidays. It's an unfair discrimination."
"What do you mean, atheists have no holidays," his friend replied, "People have been observing a special day in your honor for years."
"I don't know what you're talking about," the atheist said, "When is this special day honoring atheists?"
"April first."

QUOTE: Can atheists get insurance for acts of God?

QUOTE: "An atheist is one who believes he has absolute knowledge that there is no one who has absolute knowledge." Frederick Copelson.

ATHEISTIC BARBER NOT GOD
A minister and an atheistic barber were once walking through the city slums. Said the barber to the preacher: "This is why I cannot believe in a God of love. If God was as kind as you say, He would not permit all this poverty, disease and squalor: He would not allow these bums to be addicted to dope and other character destroying habits. No, I cannot believe in a God who permits these things."
The minister was silent until they met a man who was especially unkempt and filthy. His hair was hanging down his neck, and he had a half-inch of stubble on his face. Said the minister: "You can't be a very good barber or you wouldn't permit a man like that to continue living in this neighborhood without a haircut or shave."
Indignantly the barber answered: "Why blame me for that man's condition? I can't help it that he is like that. He has never given me a chance to help him. If he would only come to my shop, I could fix him up and make him look like a gentleman!"
Giving the barber a penetrating look, the minister said: "Then don't blame God for allowing these people to continue in their evil ways, when He is constantly inviting them to come and be saved. The reason these people are slaves to sin and evil habits is that they refuse the One who died to save and deliver them."

CHECK IT OUT YOURSELF article written 12/11/81
A scientist once asked author Dorothy Sayers to write a letter to his scientific organization, setting forth her reasons for believing in the Christian faith.
The letter was not at all what the scientist had expected. It said:
"Why do you want a letter from me? Why don't you take the trouble to find out for yourselves what Christianity is? You take time to learn technical terms about electricity. Why don't you do as much for theology? Why do you never read the great writings on the subject, but take your information from the secular 'experts' who have picked it up as accurately as you? Why don't you learn the facts in this field as honestly as in your own field? Why do you accept mil-dewed old heresies as the language of the church, when any handbook of church history will tell you where they came from?
"Why do you balk at the doctrine of the Trinity-God the Three in One-yet meekly acquiesce when Einstein tells you E = MC2? What makes you suppose that the expression 'God ordains' is narrow and bigoted, while your own expression 'Science demands' is taken as an objective statement of fact? You would be ashamed to know as little about internal combustion as you know about Christian beliefs.
"I admit," she continued, "you can practice Christianity without knowing much theology, just as you can drive a car without knowing much about internal combustion. But when something breaks down in the car, you go humbly to the man who understands the works; whereas, if something goes wrong with religion, you merely throw the works away and tell the theologian he is a liar.
Why do you want a letter from me telling you about God? You will never bother to check on it or find out whether I'm giving you personal opinions or Christian doctrines. Don't bother with me. Go away and do some work and let me get on with mine."

HUXLEY ON MEANINGLESSNESS
Aldous Huxley in the book, Ends and Means said, "I had motives for not wanting the world to have meaning: Consequently assumed that it had none, and was able to find satisfying reasons for this assumption. The philosopher who finds no meaning in the world is not concerned exclusively with a problem in pure metaphysics (the study of being and the origin of the cosmos); he is also concerned to prove there is no valid reason to prove he should not do as he wants to. .. For myself, the philosophy of meaninglessness was essentially an instrument of liberation, sexual and political."
The above quote is probably the best explanation I have ever heard about why people do not want to become Christians. This was written by a non-Christian (obviously) as a justification of his rejection of Christianity. If everything is meaningless why not do whatever you want. If there is no superior being, with knowledge of right or wrong, why not live life based on your own desires? If there is nothing beyond this life, why waste your time obeying rules set up by someone else thousands of years ago? If all of life is meaningless then life itself is meaningless and why not end it; either your own or someone else's? The fact is life is not meaningless even to Huxley. According to even this small political gratification. His life had enough meaning to him that he sought to indulge himself in all sorts of ways.
Perhaps Huxley was correct though in one aspect. Solomon began Ecclesiastes with these words, "Meaningless! Meaningless! says the teacher. Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless. What does a man gain from all of his labor at which he toils under the sun?" (Eccl 1:2-3 NIV)

PLEASE SIR, LET HIM DREAM
An atheist, hearing the testimony of converted drunkard, blurted out in scorn, "It is nothing, I tell you. It's just foolishness, and a figment of the imagination; that is all. It is nothing but an escape from reality-a dream!"
Looking down, the atheist saw the bewildered eyes of a small child. "Please, sir," he said with a sob, "if he is dreaming, don't wake him up. He's been so good to us since he met Jesus. You see, he is my daddy."
Small wonder that the atheist turned away with no answer. There is nothing as powerful as the testimony of a changed life. A true Christian will certainly live a changed life before the world.
John Bava Scrapbook of Radiant Gems

SIGMOND FREUD ON RELIGION
"When a man is Need of religion, he has a better chance to live a normal and wholesome life."

YOU SAY THERE IS A GOD/BRAINS? Our Daily Bread
An atheist said to a Quaker, "Have you ever seen God? Have you ever felt God? Have you ever smelled God? And you say you have a God!"
After a long pause, the Quaker replied, "Hast thou ever seen thy brains? Hast thou ever felt thy brains? Hast thou ever smelled thy brains? And thou sayest thou hast brains!"

DID YOU HEAR THE ONE ABOUT...
The Agnostic who suffered from dyslexia and insomnia... he stayed up all night trying to figure out if there was a dog.

DILEMMA OF AMERICAN ATHEIST SOCIETY - Pulpit Helps July 1992 p. 15
For some reason, Christians feel intimidated by atheism. They assume that the atheist and the intellectual are on the same level. The assumption is groundless:
A recent article published by the American Atheist Society was written by a zealous but discouraged atheist (a graduate of the U. of Texas, and president of "American Atheists") who related 5 basic coronary problems plaguing contemporary atheists of the U.S..
1. The 1st dilemma he cites is a "lack of unity." He begins with a word on how unified Christians seem, in their stand against abortion and in the fact that they do not openly criticize one another. He says history has shown atheistic attitudes towards each other have been nothing but outride hostility... The atheists hate the agnostics, who hate the humanists, who cannot stand the rationalists, who keep their distance from the realists, who will not speak to the Unitarians, and on and on it goes - they cannot even agree on the simple concept that "there is no god."
2. The second symptom is one of "lack of zeal." He says "atheists will simply not get involved with the promotion of their chosen life-style. I cannot think of a group harder to motivate... atheists seem to feel that their position with regard to religion is a deeply personal thing that does not need to be shared with others."
I suppose it is hard to be enthusiastic about the nonexistence of God, when the word "enthusiasm" actually comes from the 2 Greek words "en" and "theos," meaning "in God." If I denied the existence of the sun, I would find it rather difficult to be zealous in my convictions in the light of its brilliance.
3. The 3rd dilemma is "a lack of faith." The writer admits, "I have met many atheists who cannot surpass the 'what if I am wrong?' stage." The cause of their problem is obviously a lack of unbelief.
4. The 4th ailment is one of "lack of boldness." The president of the society remarks about an incident where a newspaper reporter wanted to do an article on the subject of atheistic life-styles; and how he found nothing but the "fear of man" in those whom he contacted. He said he called, from person to person and "encountered such deep seated fear that I could hardly believe my ears. In short, most of the atheists I contacted were petrified with fear at being found out... it was a climate of total fear."
5. And finally, he found that the average atheist was bound by a "lack of giving." He speaks of the generosity of Christians, and then protests. "I know that certainly there are person of great means who are atheists, but they simply will not assist in the struggle against religion... and I know you are out there...." He believes they are there - somewhere.

ANSWER TO AGNOSTICS Pulpit Helps July 1992, p. 12
"I will not believe anything that I do not understand," said a man in a hotel one day. "Neither will I," said another. "Nor will I," said a 3rd.
"Gentlemen," said one who sat close by, "on my ride this morning I saw some geese in a field eating grass; do you believe that?"
"Certainly," said one of the 3 listeners.
"I saw the pigs eating grass; do you believe that?"
"Of course," Said the 3.
"I also saw sheep and cows eating grass; do you believe that?"
"Of course," was again the reply.
"Well, the grass turned to feathers on the backs of the geese, to bristles on the backs of the swine, to white wool on the sheep, and to hair on the cow; do you believe that, gentlemen?"
"Certainly," they replied.
"But do you understand it?"

TEN TOP PROBLEMS OF ATHEISTS Lynn Newsletter 9/14/92
10. The only good thing you do on your knees is scrub floors.
9. You wake up in the morning feeling really grateful, but to whom?
8. You call Dial A Prayer and no one answers.
7. All the change in your pockets says "In God We Trust," and you can't relate
6. You have to tell that tender, small voice to shut up all the time.
5. At some point in your life you'll say, "It just can't get any better than this," & you'll be right!
4. That little statue of Madeline Murray O'Hare on the dashboard just doesn't work.
3. Your idea of a higher power in the universe is the IRS.
2. Limited profanity - why bother to curse in the name of someone who doesn't exist?
1. No matter where you go when you die, there won't be any atheists there

THE SEED OF ATHEISM IN RUSSIA Letter by Nadiia Hundert of Kiev to the publication Soviet Ukraine. circa 1992
"Today, as a consequence of an atheistic upbringing, we are knee deep in alcoholics, drug addicts, other chemically dependent individuals, loafers, bums, criminals, savages, uncouths, dullards, cruel and frightful juveniles who commit crimes for the fun of it. These are people who were brought up by non-believer parents and an atheistic society. Christians lived with religion for 1000 years and provided us with a rich heritage, which we have succeeded in destroying without fire or flood... It would be a very good thing if, in restructuring the school curriculum, the education specialists included teaching of religion in our schools."

FROM A SPEECH BY FRANK PEROTTI (?) 4/93 at Dayton, OH John 3:16 gives a view of the world that is like a fish bowl with an open top, with God able to reach in and change the order of things.
Carl Sagan believes that the universe is a closed system - a "closed fishbowl." Which in effect causes him to see no hope beyond the "reasoning of man," and what man can accomplish. He wants to spend billions sending non-random radio signals into space, in the hope that some E.T. will reply. When asked why, he said "When we know who they are, then we'll know who we are." The emptiness of relying on man's guidelines to establish truth can be illustrated in the events which began in the fall of 1992, when a young man enrolled at the U. of California at Berkeley. He decided to not wear any clothes at anytime: to class, meals, or walking around campus. Now, the students complained, the faculty winced & the administration searched for rules which he had broken. No such rules were in place, so they created one forbidding public display of nudity, kicked him out, and then, on advice of counsel, rescinded the rule, and begged him to return apologizing for having infringed on his rights of free expression! The University finally ridded themselves of the sticky situation with "the naked man" only when some female students claimed that his behavior constituted "sexual harassment." It took a "Politically correct" crime to trip him up. He finally was thrown out in February of 1993, presumably on his bare bottom. Malcolm Muggeridge, on loss of faith:
G.K. Chesterton once said it is often supposed that when people stop believing in God, they believe in nothing. Alas, it is worse than that. When they stop believing in God, they believe in anything.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN ON GOD R.Digest 7/72 p. 98
"I can see how it might be possible for a man to look down upon the earth and be an atheist, but I cannot conceive how he could look up into the heavens and say there is no God."

FROM A CHURCH BULLETIN BOARD
"Merry Christmas to our Christian friends. Happy Hanukkah to our Jewish friends. And to our atheist friends, good luck."

EXHAUSTING GOD'S PATIENCE
Robert Ingersol, one of the most renowned atheists of the past century once pulled his pocket watch out after one of his addresses and declared "According to the Bible, God has struck men to death for blasphemy. I will blaspheme Him and give Him 5 minutes to strike me dead and damn my soul." Then he cursed God.
There was a period of perfect silence while one minute went by; 2 minutes passed, an people began to get nervous; 3 minutes, and a woman in the audience fainted; 4 minutes, and Ingersol curled his lip.
At five minutes, he snapped shut his watch, put it in his pocket, and said: "You see, there is no God, or He would have taken me at my word."
* The type of God Ingersol envisioned was one who stood angrily waiting for any man or woman to curse Him or commit some foul deed so that He could reach down, scoop them up in His hand and crush the life from their bodies.
* The Bible paints us a different picture - "God does not desire that any should perish..." "For God so loved the world..."
* Another man who heard of Ingersol's demonstration noted: "And did this American think he could exhaust the patience of God in 5 minutes?"

THE ATHEIST'S CHALLENGE
Charles Bradlaugh was an outstanding atheist in England. Down in the slums was a minister by the name of Hugh Price Hughes. All London was aware of miracles of grace accomplished at his mission.
Charles Bradlaugh challenged Mr. Hughes to a debate on the validity of the claims of Christianity. This challenge perked up the ears of all in London... what would Hughes do? He immediately accepted the debate and in doing so added one challenge of his own:
Hughes said. "I propose to you that we each bring some concrete evidences of the validity of our beliefs in the form of men and women who have been redeemed from the lives of sin and shame by the influence of our teaching. I will bring 100 such men and women and I challenge you to do the same.
"If you cannot bring 100, Mr. Bradlaugh, to match my 100, I will be satisfied if you will bring 50 such men and women who will stand and testify that they have been lifted up from lives of shame by the influence of your teachings. If you can't bring 50, then bring 20 people who will say, as my 100 will, that they have a great joy in a life of self respect as a result of your atheistic teachings. If you cannot bring 20, I will be satisfied if you bring 10.
"Nay, Mr. Bradlaugh, challenge you to bring one, just one man or woman who will make such a testimony regarding the uplifting of your atheistic teachings."
Bradlaugh withdrew his challenge.

THE EFFECT OF ATHEISM - CHRISTIAN RESEARCH NEWSLETTER
March-May 1994 Newsletter: In your book, a Shattered Visage, you tell an amusing story about Soviet cosmonaut, Major Gherman Titov.
Zacharias: Yes this 26 year old cosmonaut orbited the earth and returned safely, climaxing a monumental feat for human kind. Some time later, speaking at the World's Fair and savoring his moment of glory, he recounted his experience. In a rather pretextual pronouncement, on a triumphalistic note, he let it be known that on his excursion into space he hadn't seen God. Upon hearing of this exuberant argument from silence, someone quipped, "Had he stepped out his space suit he would have!
Now, the skeptic loves to lay blame at the religionists door for killing many people in the name of religion, which obviously has happened in the history of our world. In my book, however, I try to point our that where the so-called Christian has done this its an illogical and unjustified leap from the person and teachings of Jesus Christ. But where the atheist indulges in violence, it is the logical outworking of a philosophy without God - Such as Nietzsche's. Unless we wake up to the fact, this century is only going to bring more bloodshed: our nation is already witnessing it.

THE MASTER OF MY FATE - POEM
The philosophy of humanism is eloquently expressed in William Ernest Henley's famous poem, "Invictus":
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance,
I have not winced nor cried aloud:
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

THE ATHEISM OF WELLS AND SHAW - EMPTINESS
Writers H.G. Wells and George Bernard Shaw were brilliant men, yet they rejected the message of Scripture. They placed their trust in their own systems of belief, which were based on human reason. Yet they could not find lasting inner peace, and they slowly lost confidence in what they believed. Wells' final literary work, for example, has been aptly called "a scream of despair." And shortly before Shaw died in 1950, he wrote, "The science to which I pinned my faith is bankrupt. Its counsels, which should have established the millennium, have led directly to the suicide of Europe. I believed them once. In their name I helped to destroy the faith of millions. And now they look at me and witness the great tragedy of an atheist who has lost his faith."

BURIED BY MAN'S WISDOM
Last December (1986) Eleanor Barry, a 70-year-old ex-actress, was killed by a pile of paper. A giant pile of books, newspapers, and the press clippings dating back 25 years collapsed on Miss Barry while she lay in bed. Police had to use an axe to smash the door of her bedroom because the collapsed pile blocked their entry. They stated the weight of the papers muffled her cries for help.
Those searching for truth need to beware of the power of print to kill all desire for God. The rationalistic theories of men can crush the spirit of inquiry after truth. Many a man or woman has become the victim of atheism and agnosticism by means of the printed page.

BERTRAND RUSSELL DESCRIBES HOPELESSNESS
Bertrand Russell was a man who had no faith in the Bible or God. He describes in eloquent terms the natural outcome of a life from which all faith in the resurrection of Christ is removed. He says:
The life of man is a long march through the night, surrounded by invisible foes, tortured by weariness and pain, towards a goal that few can hope to reach and where none can tarry long. One by one, as they march, our comrades vanish from our sight, seized by the silent orders of omnipotent death.
Brief and powerless is man's life, on his and all his race the slow, sure doom falls, pitiless and dark. Blind to good and evil, reckless of destruction, omnipotent matter rolls on its relentless way. For man, condemned today to lose his dearest, tomorrow himself to pass through the gates of darkness, it remains only to cherish, ere yet the blow falls, the lofty thoughts that ennoble his little day.

 

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