Monday, March 29, 2010

Dawkins Makes Sense

For mission we had a panel on atheism and God's existence. Wasn't really the issue of the day. For most people the real issue was whether God could be known only through Christianity or not. ie. Why is Christianity exclusive?

But on the way I read half of Dawkins' God Delusion. He argued very strongly that religion was not what made people moral. Rather the morality of people need to be understood in their historical context: Abraham or the crusades. This sounds familiar. Morality is progressing so we no longer have slavery, women are free, etc. I totally agree with his historical arguments but want Christianity to make Christians more moral than their historical times - a very very hard thing to prove.

Dawkins' argument appears to be that evolution and natural selection better explain this historical evolution of morality and we should stop imagining that religion had anything to do with it.

I know he is fairly vitriolic, uses horribly emotive language, and conflates ideas in Nazi-like propaganda... (this sentence is supposed to be emotive and ironic!!!)...BUT his argument is reasonable.

I've been reading a bit of the history of churches in Australia. And I do not think calling Australia a Christian country does any service to the faith. A reading of history that sees good as Christian and evil as non-Christian (although subtly) does no justice to the role of the gospel in shaping lives. We are blessed with key Christians in the history of our society. But that does not make us a Christian (or post-Christian) society.

What Dawkins rejects is SIN. Sin effects rational thinking so people argue for their own morality against God's plan for humanity. (Rom 1:18-24)

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