Tag Archives: proof

How to prove God is real

So, I’ve noticed a lot of Christians use words when they debate.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a live debate, or an Internet discussion. Christians always use words. They will make logical arguments about why the world must have a Creator. They’ll talk about history, and claim the Bible is reliable and true. They’ll give personal experiences. They’ll talk about how morality must come from a divine law-giver, or claim life is meaningless without God.

They’ll draw on their knowledge of science, history, logic, theology, and epistemology. What I’ve never seen them appeal to, though, is physical proof.

That’s not how it is in the Bible. Continue reading

Atheist Parables: The Wedding Banquet

In Matthew 22, Jesus tells a story about a bunch of ungrateful people who refuse to come at the summons of their king to celebrate a wedding banquet. Eventually the rich, the noble, and the ‘worthy’ prove themselves to be unworthy, and instead the poor and the unworthy are given the fruits of the kingdom. Why would those worthy people so callously refuse an invitation from their king?

 It was not a very important town, and its ruler was not a very important lord. They were not fabulously rich, although they had plenty to get by on. They knew there was a king ruling over the kingdom, or at least they assumed there was. Most of them had never seen the king; in fact most of them didn’t know his name or in what city he lived. He ignored the town and its nobles, and they got along fine without him.

So they were surprised one day to receive messengers from the king. The messengers said that the king wanted to speak with the lord and his court. His Majesty was holding a state banquet, and invited them to come, along with any of the more wealthy members of the town.

The recipients of this strange news were a little unsure of what to expect, but nevertheless they were thrilled to be called away to meet such an important person. They put on their finest clothes, gathered up riches for tribute to the king, and journeyed with the messengers off to the city of the king, which they were told was four days away.

On the second night, however, brigands descended on the caravan as they were lying down to sleep. Continue reading

Atheist Parables: Doubting Thomas

Welcome to my Atheist Parables series. In the tradition of Plato, Jesus, and Aesop, I will use stories and allegory to examine issues of faith, reality and reason.

This is a parable based on the story of Thomas, from John 20. Thomas didn’t see Jesus the first time he appeared to the disciples, so he didn’t believe at first that Jesus came back from the dead. But Jesus was kind and helped him believe. What if Jesus had acted like this instead?

Jesus appeared to the disciples behind locked doors on Monday.  He told them to receive the holy spirit and that he was sending them into the world.  But Thomas, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.

So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.”

But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.”

Eight days later, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them.  Although the doors were locked, Jesus again came and stood among them.

Peter and Thomas were alone in one room of the house, when Jesus came in.  Peter was overjoyed to see his friend, the Messiah, and he cried, “My Lord!”

“Peace be with you,” said Jesus.  “The holy spirit is upon you.”

“Who are you talking to?” said Thomas.  “There’s nobody there!”

“What?” said Peter.  “Are you crazy?  It’s Jesus!  He’s right here!” Continue reading