Friday, January 29, 2010

Praise God for Richard Dawkins

Writing today in "The Times" Richard Dawkins is on a mission to demonstrate again how stupid Christians are and how superior his own brand of religion (athiesm) is to all the rest. I have to say much of the article I agreed with.  I find it amazing that we Christians actually lack the courage to say what the Bible says. We sometimes go to huge lengths to distance ourselves from very simple and straight forward ideas the Bible has about sin and suffering because we cannot bear the idea that God is actually in control of all the mess, or that he holds us accountable for what we do or even that he subjects the world to these things in the hope of a new world (Romans 8). Somehow to say these things for some Christians is to commit the sin of offending others unnecessarily.  While Dr Dawkins may object to what the Bible says and call it immoral and depraved he at least is willing to admit to the idea that atonement at the cross is the issue.

Where I do slightly disagree with him through is in this:
"Your entire religion is founded on an obsession with “sin”, with punishment and with atonement." 
I object because I am not at all sure we are obsessed with sin,  I think it would be more accurate to say we are obsessed with grace. I admit I think sin is serious and shouldn't be ignored. I admit I think God is going to punish the world on the last day, and yes I do think atonement is central to a correct understanding of the cross... but I am obsessed with grace. Grace is something so unexpected and so un-religious that it blows my mind.  Religion says "be good and God will love you" grace says "God in Christ loves us more than we can know and repentance and faith not good deeds are the key to getting hold of that love."


William Horsburgh said...

Excellent Paul, thank you for taking the time to think this through and put it in writing.

May it please God to use Dawkins to give us opportunity to speak to our generation about the God of grace and mercy.

Jason Ramsey said...

Less than being "obsessed" with sin, sin is a reality of the world. It's like saying we're obsessed with air because we insist on breathing it. Sin exists, it is everywhere including within our totally depraved selves. But Paul, totally agree, wow you brought a smile to my face. We are obsessed with grace. The gospel is all about grace. And when we see grace in the light of sin? Wow!