John Shore Christian Blog and Commentary

Atheist and Christian: Who's the Fool?

(Relative to my recent, "The Cross That Batman Bears.")

I would no sooner suggest that an atheist can't be moral than I would that a bug can't be creepy a wino can't be ambitious Batman can't suffer from bunions any other stupid thing I might say. Of course atheists can live according to an ethos anyone would recognize as moral.

But that they can raises an interesting question. Namely; from whence the atheist's morality? If you're religious, you (tend to) think that your morality is an extension of God's nature; that in endeavoring to be more like God, you assume and evince as much of His nature as you can, and thereby behave and feel more moral. So in that very real sense, the primary source of your morality is outside of yourself.

But what about the atheist? He looks up to the heavens, and sees nothing more (and nothing less!) than atmospheric science.

As the source of their morality, most atheists point toward The Common Good. They are motivated to be moral because they want to do what's best for others. "Cause the least harm" is their inspiration; they join with the Christian (and everyone else in the world) in wanting to treat others as they themselves want to be treated.


What's interesting is to think of where and/or how the atheists' nexus of morality is, or becomes, abstract. Pointing to The Good the atheist points to nothing real, nothing tangible. He points to an idea. What inspires the atheist to be moral -- to put the needs of others ahead of his own -- is the power of an abstract ideal.

The atheist believes in the truth, power, and compelling goodness of an abstract ideal.

But we Christians are fools.


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