Posts Tagged ‘self-deception’

(A series of scripted correspondences from a ‘Heavenly helper’ to a Christian Soldier)

[Letter 11]:

Greetings Soldier,

Your recent enquiries reveal a deep thirst for knowledge and an eagerness to put what you have learned thus far into action. Needless to say, the Heavenly Hierarchy is pleased with this! Regarding your question about whether unbelievers (whom we know to be living in willful denial of God’s revealed truth) are necessarily lying when they profess to believe the things they say they do: the answer is ‘no’—they are not necessarily lying but are often ‘self-deceived’. Remember, satan does have the ability to blind the minds of those who deny God in order to keep the Gospel from reaching their hearts. One of the ways he accomplishes this task is by means of cultivating and promoting an attitude of ‘willful ignorance‘ (merely one form of self-deception) on the part of the unbeliever with regards to things concerning God, Christ, and the Bible.  It has been rightly stated that one will not receive into their heart as true that which their mind rejects as false. Therefore, it is the concerned Christian’s urgent duty to engage in pulling down such ‘intellectual strongholds’ through the bold presentation and declaration of the truth in order that the unbeliever might be freed from the captivity of satanic deception and granted repentance unto salvation by God the Father, through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Understood in this light, Christ’s declaration in John 8:32–‘you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free’–is received with a new and fresh appreciation in the mind and heart of the Christian.

In response to your second question: ‘yes’ I do advocate trying out these arguments online. There you will find no shortage of anti-Christian blogs, posts, and websites where you may engage the unbeliever, expose the error of their worldview, and enlighten them with Biblical truth. Be forewarned, though, that unbelievers do not take kindly to having the basis of their worldview challenged and exposed in this way and you will almost certainly encounter hostility like you never have before. In truth, this is really a positive, since it is a sign that the arguments have struck a nerve and are provoking some discomfort in the unbeliever’s state of mind. Besides, any reaction is always preferred over apathy (since apathy is but one sure sign of intellectual and spiritual ‘deadness’). So long as there is passion and/or zeal present (even misguided passion and/or zeal), then there is hope of a genuine conversion; after all, who can forget the grand transformation that took place when a certain misguided zealot named Saul was converted into that radical new creature in Christ—the Apostle Paul! If you are interested in beginning a conversation on the Dialogue.org site you mentioned, then I suggest you simply state your position plainly as to how Christianity provides the foundation for preconditions of intelligibility and then challenge the unbelievers there with a few direct questions about how those things are reconciled within their worldview. The purpose of this is twofold: it will provide the unbeliever with an opportunity to tell you about their worldview so that an internal critique of it can be performed, while providing you with the opportunity to plainly demonstrate to them how and why Christianity alone provides a rational, internally consistent, foundation for the preconditions of intelligibility required to hold a discussion in the first place (knowledge truth, logic, etc.). For example, you could begin with something like this:

*’Isn’t Dialogue.org great?! We have a place where anyone can come and argue any point about virtually any topic! However, an astute debater will find that the very concept of ‘debate’ assumes the existence of logic, truth, and knowledge. Since laws of logic are abstract, universal, invariants and truth and knowledge are certain by definition, each of these concepts can be (and are) made sense of in the Christian worldview (since they reflect the absolute, immaterial nature of a Sovereign God who has revealed Himself to mankind such that we can be certain of who He is).One should ultimately ask, though, how any non-Christian can rationally account for any of these concepts apart from the God of the Bible. Well?’

This should elicit enough response from the other side to keep you busy for a while and provide you with plenty of hands on practice in evaluating non-Christian worldviews for the presence of arbitrariness, inconsistency, and the preconditions of intelligibility. Have fun,

Your Heavenly ‘Angent’

*To see this approach utilized at a real online debate site, check out: http://www.debate.org/forums/Religion/topic/55783/

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At least that’s what the bumper sticker on the van in front of me said.  It was one of literally several dozen, plastered all over the back of the vehicle, declaring the non-existence of God and the intellectual superiority of atheism.  I couldn’t help but find the irony (and humor) in all the time, energy, and resources that were no doubt used to create this rolling billboard designed for the sole purpose of telling the world that God does not exist.  After all, if there is no God, and therefore no ultimate meaning to the universe, why bother to go through all the trouble of trying to convince anyone of anything?  Not to mention, for the sake of consistency, shouldn’t all ‘so called’ non-existent entities be treated with the same contempt and given their proper sticker space on the back of one’s vehicle?

This was not the case, however, as I noticed that I didn’t see even one sticker declaring the non-existence of Santa, the Easter Bunny, Harry Potter, Bigfoot, or even the Tooth Fairy……only God. The reason for this can be summed up in one word: Authority.  According to Romans Chapter 1, everyone knows that God exists, but some choose to suppress that truth in unrighteousness. That is, they work very hard at pretending that God does not exist as a means of (unsuccessfully) avoiding accountability to Him.  In short, some people would just rather be their own god than submit to the one true God of Scripture.  This is perfectly consistent with what the Bible tells us about the depraved nature of mankind and our inherent desire to rebel against our Creator.  It has been rightly stated that:

The atheist can’t find God for the same reason a criminal can’t find a policeman.

They simply don’t WANT to, as they have made themselves the enemies of God and have transgressed against His righteous Authority, through their sin and rebellion. The sole remedy for rebellion against God is complete surrender to Him, through obeying the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Of course, this can only be brought about via the regenerating work of God’s Holy Spirit upon the heart of the unbeliever.  As such, the type of self-deception that the professing atheist engages in is not only very foolish and dangerous, it also ultimately means that, by definition, atheism is…..you guessed it…..pretend.  Now that’s a bumper sticker I’d like to see!