Sunday, 1 February 2009

'Probably No God'

The British Humanist Society, supported by the famous atheist and Christian-basher Richard Dawkins, are about to launch an advertising campaign on about 800 buses around Britain, which says "There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life." I'm sorry, I just have to laugh, and not because I believe differently.

Why say there's 'probably' no God? An atheist is someone who believes there is no God, so why not have the courage of your convictions and say 'there is no God'? If you're not sure, you're an agnostic. And if you're not sure, why would you advertise it? And what if you're wrong?

The advert continues by telling people to stop worrying. Why worry about it, if you're sure that there's no God? And if you're not sure, why don't you find out? I think most people don't care one way or the other. God doesn't figure in their thinking at all. Maybe this advert will backfire and start people worrying about whether there's a God.

And now for the Christian bit: God is faithful to His promises, and if anyone honestly tries to find out if there is a God, they will get an answer - just as I did. When I talk to people about my faith I ask them to make an informed decision. Instead of speculating, or 'worrying', get the information so you can decide for yourself. No-one can make you a Christian, except God Himself. Christians can only explain, and point the way.

So here's my challenge, to the British Humanist Society, Richard Dawkins, et al: Stop worrying, and find out. And if you're not worrying, why? It's the most important decision of your life.


AndyM said...

Ann, if read The God Delusion, Dawkins deals with this point directly.

Scientists are open minded and dispassionate: no matter how strongly the evidence points in one direction to support the current favourite theory or orthodoxy, there is always the potential for another theory to come along with more persuasive evidence, therefore you can never say anything with 100% certainty - unlike religious people who declare 100% certainty and shut out overwhelming evidence to disprove their belief set.

Anyone saying there is definitely a god is deluding themself and closing their mind. Scientists question theories all the time - do you question your beliefs at all?


Mike's 4 Tea said...

"There is probably no truth in what Richard Dawkins says, so stop worrying and enjoy worshipping your maker"

There are two flaws in your reasoning Andy. When you write that there is no scientific orthodoxy that scientists feel they must passionately defend I don't disagree with you. However, the fatal flaw in Dawkins' argument is not the science but his insistence on defending that orthodoxy you insist does not exist while attacking an orthodoxy he does not understand.

This is what makes him unpopular with many scientists who otherwise admire his work. I once heard him described by a cosmologist speaking on the Radio 4 programme "In our Time" as "the best recruiting seargant for the creationists cause".

His defence of science is admirable and I like him for it. His conclusions regarding God are thoroughly unwarranted from a scientific viewpoint since science has nothing to say about God. He has every right to his beliefs but his is a classic example of what happens when an expert steps outside his field to comment on things about which he is little better equipped to comment than the next man.

There was a classic example of this in David Attenborough's otherwise excellent TV programme on Darwin broadcast a couple of Sundays ago. He cited some verses from Genesis about Adam "subduing" the earth and having "dominion", commenting that this meant man could exploit nature. Any 101 Bible student could tell you that was a real schoolboy howler. An expert scientist worthy of admiration but, frankly, a lousy theologian.

The second flaw in your argument, and this surprised me, was the old nonsense that "Christians are like this". It is an utter nonsense to lump all Christians together as though we are one homogeneous whole. It also makes no sense to judge issues of faith according to scientific principles.

The rules of science are provisonal, as you rightly insist, and God is not bound by the provisional conclusions of man's experiments, admirable and wonderful as they are.