Truth That Matters

"What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?" - Jesus Christ

Was Galileo persecuted because his scientific observations did not agree with the Bible?

The Roman Catholic Church persecuted Galileo and Copernicus because they said that the earth goes round the sun but the pope and other Catholic authorities believed that the sun (and everything else) goes around the earth - this is not Biblical teaching – it was Catholic teaching. The Catholics picked it up from Ptolemy and others (scientists before Galileo). Therefore, the Bible should not be blamed for the actions of the RCC. Today, atheist authorities discriminate against Christian scientists because as atheists, they are committed to evolution theory [See “Slaughter of the Dissidents”, Jerry Bergman, Leafcutter Press, Southworth, WA,. 2008. Also see the DVD produced by Hollywood actor Ben Stein: “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed”]. Thus, they are making the same mistake as the RCC, which being committed to Ptolemy, persecuted Galileo.

Science has proved that the earth is a "pale blue dot" in a vast universe. Does this undermine the Bible, according to which man is central to God's purposes?

The Bible DOES say that man is important to God, but the Bible does NOT say that this is BECAUSE the earth is the centre of a small universe! [Ptolemy and his followers, including the RCC believed that the earth is the centre of a small universe] Since God has stretched out the heavens (Isaiah 45:12), and the heavens declare His glory (Psalm 19:1), we should expect the universe to be very large. Since God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts (Isaiah 55:8-9), we should NOT expect His sense of proportion to be the same as ours. Thus we should not think it incredulous for God to make such a big universe for such a small human race. The Psalmist expresses wonder that God would even bother thinking about men (Psalm 8:3-4) . We also read in the Psalms that it is condescension for God to consider the things on heaven and earth (Psalm 113:5-6) – this suggests that the earth is very small compared to the whole universe. Thus, far from undermining the Bible, the discoveries of Copernicus and Hubble only reinforce what the Bible says. When we learn of the huge size of the universe, it should lead us to a better understanding of the Bible, and a better appreciation of our God. He is so incredible in His power and wisdom, and yet He loved us enough to come as a human being to this small speck, and die for tiny creatures like us!

Has religion or atheism killed more people?

Let's tabulate the numbers of people killed due to (or in the name of) various ideologies:-

 Atheism Islam  Roman Catholicism 
 Bolshevik Revolution:   9Sudan civil war/Darfur (1983-2005):  2Roman Catholic inquisition: 70
Communist genocide in USSR (1917-1953):  61Armenian/Assyrian/Greek Genocide (Muslim Turks massacred Armenian "dhimmis", 1915-1923):  3

French religious wars (1562-1598): 4


Hitler's Holocaust:  17Crusades:  2Crusades: 2
Holodomor famine unleashed by Stalin:  8Apostasy wars:  0.1Thirty years war: 11
Abortions in China:  50 Massacre of Almoravides/Marrakesh:  0.2  
Cambodian revolution:  3Islamic invasions of India:  10 
Chinese persecution of Falun Gong, Buddhists, Christians:  0.2Massacre of Christians, Mesopotamia:  0.3Slaughter of the Serbs (1940s): 1 
Famine caused by Mao's Great Leap Forward (1959-1961):  43Terrorism in the post-colonial period  0.1Conquest of the Americas: 8
Communists in Bulgaria, East Germany, Romania, Ethiopia:  1.3 Syrian Sunni v/s Shia/Alawite civil war, 2012 onwards:   1 
Mao's land reform, suppression of counter-revolutionaries:  2Islamic State massacres, 2014 onwards:   0.1 
Cultural revolution in China:  2   
Total:
 196.5Total: 9.1 18.8Total: 88
 Note:-
  1. All figures are in millions.
  2. The figure for Biblical Christianity is: ZERO. Did God ask Christians to kill others?
  3. The figures have been sourced from Wikipedia.
  4. Here's some more information from Russian thinker Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn: "At the height of the Spanish Inquisition about ten persons per month were executed. During the eighty years before the Russian Revolution seventeen persons per year were executed. In the first two years of Lenin’s revolution more than  one thousand persons per month were executed without due process of law. At the height of Stalin’s terror an estimated forty thousand persons per month were executed." See Alexandr Solzhenitsyn, “America: You Must Think About  the World,” Solzhenitsyn: The Voice of Freedom (June 30, 1975), p. 9.
  5. Communist murders fall into the category of atheism since atheism provided the justification for communist ideology:-
    1. Karl Marx believed that communism is true because it was a logical consequence of atheistic evolution theory (he even requested Charles Darwin to write the foreword to Das Capital). Thus, communism would not be preached were it not for atheism.
    2. If there is no God, and humans are just evolved matter, there is nothing wrong in enforcing communism on those who are not willing.
    3. If there is no God and humans are just evolved matter, there is nothing wrong in killing humans to fulfill a "progressive agenda". Mao suggested that 50 million peasants would have to be killed for agrarian reform. (He managed to kill just a couple of million). Note that only an atheist worldview can accommodate such a statement.
    4. If there is no God and humans are just collections of molecules, then human beliefs are the result of molecular activity, and therefore can be manipulated. This is the basis of communist belief in brainwashing, "re-education through labor" (torture of dissidents), etc. Atheists: when you point a finger at Roman Catholicism because of her inquisition, remember that "fingers" such as the Chinese gulags and Siberian slave labor camps are pointing back at you.
  6. Chinese abortions have been justified on the basis of atheism. Since babies are not made in God's image, they have no intrinsic worth or right to life. Millions of abortions have taken place in India also but I've not included them since they have nothing to do with atheism or religion.
  7. In the Crusades, Muslims and Catholics fought over Israeli (Jewish) territory because each side had religious grounds for claiming the territory. Both parties are thus guilty of religious imperialism, so I've shared the death tolls.
  8. Although the conquest of the Americas was partly imperialistic (and not merely religious), the conquest was carried out under full sanction of the RCC and the objectives included the conversion of the natives to Roman Catholicism.
  9. English and Dutch colonialists killed many people from their colonies, but they were motivated by commercial and political interests, not religion.
  10. Thinking of big numbers, let us not forget that each life is precious. India's Maoists/Naxalites (atheistic terrorists) believe that since they've been oppressed, they have the right to blow up railway lines to derail trains and kill sleeping rail passengers. While the victims number in hundreds, not millions, this behavior nevertheless exposes atheism. Only atheism implies that it is okay to kill innocent children to coerce the government into giving you what you think are your rights.

The conclusion is clear: Even excluding abortion, (which atheists don't consider to be genocide), the number of people killed in the name of atheism is greater than the number killed in the name of all false religions.

I'm an atheist but I have nothing against religion.

Some atheists see some merit in religion (spirituality is the more fashionable word) - it keeps people well behaved, religious festivals are nice occasions to celebrate, religious activities make people feel good, and so on.

All this is polite and diplomatic, but not logical. If there really is no God, if this universe has created itself, then matter and energy are the only reality; all religion, concepts such as the "soul", psychic "energy", etc are completely absurd.

I appeal to you to cut the political correctness and get real. If you don't believe in God, embrace atheism completely and all it implies. If you cannot practice atheism in all its totality, it is worth asking if that is because atheism is inconsistent with reality.

Listen to an early follower of Jesus Christ:-
"If Jesus Christ has not risen from the dead...our preaching is in vain and so is your faith...we are liars...of all men most pathetic...we might as well eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die. If Christ has not risen, why should we bother to preach to people at such peril to ourselves? Why do you think I fought beasts at Ephesus?...But now Christ has indeed risen from the dead. He has transformed me, and so the love of Christ constrains me; woe unto me if I do not preach the good news about Jesus Christ!" - paraphrased from 1 Corinthians 15:12-32, 1 Timothy 1:12-16, 1 Corinthians 9:16

Does atheism lead to a moral vacuum?

Yes. Atheism teaches that humans are just an accident of evolution. So there would be nothing wrong in treating them in any way. Some clarifications are in order:-

  1. I'm not saying that atheists cannot be good people. I'm saying that they cannot be good people as part of their consistency to their worldview. An atheist may say that he avoids hurting others' feelings. That's good, but that's not atheism lived out to the full. Evolution theory implies that the feelings of humans need not be respected. My evolutionary ancestors certainly did not care about the feelings of those species whom they displaced.
  2. I'm not saying that atheists cannot recognize that some actions hurt others. The recognition that something feels good or bad (which is possible in an atheistic framework) is not the same as morality - the classification of something as intrinsically good or bad and the motivation to choose the good even when it involves sacrifice (impossible within the atheistic framework).
  3. Some atheists divert attention with a counter question: "Do you need religion to be good?". This is like asking: "Do you need to be a Hindu to do a Hindu ritual?" Of course not! Even a Muslim can do any Hindu ritual! But he has no logical reason to do so! So most Muslims don't bother doing Hindu rituals! Thus, this counter question is no good: yes, atheists can do good - but they have no logical reason to do so, and this takes its toll. Why have atheists failed to be a good influence like Biblical Christians?
  4. Another atheist response is a counter claim: "Atheists are more moral than religious folk". This statement seems true when you compare Western atheists who are influenced by Christian culture with religious folk who sincerely practice false religions like Islam and Roman Catholicism. But when we observe atheists who truly practiced atheism in its totality (see above), we find that they are worse than the worst religious bigots, and much worse than true Christians. Also see # 1.
  5. Another atheist response: "Do we need God to tell us what is right and wrong?" No we don't, because God has already given us a conscience. But the atheist who raises this question (which presupposes the existence of right and wrong) diverts attention from a crucial point: atheism implies that there IS NO right or wrong.
  6. Some supposed Christians also exhibit immoral behavior but this is part of their inconsistency with their worldview. For instance, the Roman Catholic Church has been ruthlessly antisemitic in contradiction to the Bible which it claims to follow (see Genesis 12:1-3, Psalm 122:6, Zechariah 2:8, etc).
  7. Atheists Ayn Rand, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens point out that being good/loving to others makes us feel good/happy. This, they argue, can be a basis for morality. But although treating others well feels good sometimes, there are many situations where (at least in the minds of the perpetrators) being good/loving is not fun and being bad/hateful is. This is where the rubber meets the road, and atheism fails miserably here. Why else do we have rape, theft, etc in the world?! Besides, the observation that treating others well feels good sometimes is NOT the same as a logical reason to conclude that treating others well is the duty of all humans even if it does not feel good (true morality). 
  8. Other atheists claim that you can be a morally good and consistent atheist since being good has good survival value. Again, this may be true sometimes, but not always (just ask Indian government officers who enhance their survival by demanding bribes or pimps who survive by selling minor girls as prostitutes). So "survival value" is not a strong enough agent to produce morality in all situations. Moreover, being good to survive is not the same as realizing that being good is our ultimate duty (true morality). Atheists who say that survival value makes them behave well are effectively saying the following: "the girl next to me is merely a sex object, to be treated in any way I please, but I know that society will punish me if I misbehave with her, so I behave like a gentleman with her." There's a word for this: HYPOCRISY
  9. Atheists like to look for the genetic or evolutionary origins of moral beliefs, or moral behavior in animals. Such an effort is irrelevant to the problem of moral vacuum. How and why certain feelings arose does not imply anything about why I SHOULD OBEY those feelings. The notion that something is good because it is found in nature is called the naturalistic fallacy.
  10. I'm not saying that atheism is the only worldview that gives its adherents a license to treat others brutally. Islam also encourages violence. I do insist however, that the Bible does not instigate Christians to violence.

Some well-known atheists who were willing to face up to the fact that atheism provides a moral vacuum:-

  1. Annie Besant abandoned rationalism for mysticism (theosophy).
  2. In his autobiography, I Believed: The Autobiography of a Former British Communist, Douglas Hyde explains how he abandoned communism after seeing the intractable problem of human nature.
  3. Pagan-turned-Christian Rosalind Murray, in her The Good Pagan's Failure describes how people cannot become good with their own willpower. 

"No society has been able to reach morality without religion" - Lord Devlin, well known British lawyer, judge and jurist

"Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of man will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint." - Alexander Hamilton, founder father of the USA. 

Yes, atheism logically leads to a moral vacuum. Only the Bible can fill this moral vacuum.

Invoking God as an explanation for every gap in our scientific understanding is foolish and lazy!

By raising this objection, atheists suggest that the question of "invoking God" arises only when naturalistic explanations fail and there is no need to invoke God when there are naturalistic explanations. This error is because atheists confuse mechanisms with ultimate causes. Let me illustrate. If we raise a question (about a well known, understood, phenomena): What caused the earth to pull the apple to the ground?
  • The naive atheist answers: "the law of gravity"
  • The thoughtful atheist replies: "No, the law of gravity is a description of what the earth does, not its cause! We don't know what the cause is; rather, there is no cause"
  • The Biblical theist says: "God is the ultimate cause, but He does things so consistently that we can describe His actions with the law of gravity. The claim that there are effects with no causes is logically untenable". The Bible says that God upholds the universe so that it continues to function properly (Hebrews 1:3).
Atheists who use the laws of nature to explain away God are like the squirrels who observed an automated factory. Because they were able to figure out the rules according to which materials and equipment moved, they concluded that humans did not exist.
 
Thus, the theist always invokes God - not because he has no mechanism, but because he recognizes that mechanisms are not causes! Recognizing that God is the ultimate cause does not prevent theists from attempting to understand mechanisms. In fact, it was a Biblical theist, Isaac Newton, who discovered the law of gravity - he was not lazy. Atheists believe that the world became what it is today through processes governed by the currently known laws of science, and they have put forth theories to substantiate this claim. Even if these theories were adequate, they would not disprove the existence of God - God would still have to be invoked as the cause behind the laws.
 
But the appropriate description of atheistic origins theories is not that they have provided a cogent explanation for what we see, and merely have a few "gaps" to explain. Atheistic origins theories such as the Big Bang and organic evolution fail miserably, and even atheistic scientists admit it. It is not that we merely haven't figured out how natural processes may have produced stars, planets and people, but that scientific observations strongly suggest that natural processes in accordance with the known laws of nature cannot produce these things. Therefore, logic forces us to invoke processes NOT governed by the known laws of nature as mechanisms. Such processes can be carried out only by an Infinite Creator. To the atheist complaint that "magic is not a scientific theory", our response is that neither is fancy; atheistic theories of origins cannot explain the evolution of stars, planets and people without resorting to fanciful just-so stories. Moreover, truth matters - not your definition of what constitutes a scientific theory.
 
There are cases where intelligent design is not merely an alternative to (God using) natural processes but follows directly from our observations:-

Are there scientifically informed people who believe in God?

Yes, note the following:-

  1. The pioneers in various fields of science were Christians because only Christianity provides a philosophical foundation for science.
  2. Many scientists today hold to creation (Biblical or otherwise) and reject Darwinism, which is the prime basis for atheism.
  3. "In Six Days" (Master Books) contains the testimonies of 50 accomplished scientists in various fields, outlining why they believe in the creation account of the Bible. Another similar book is "21 Great Scientists who believed the Bible" by Ann Lamont [the Appendix has more names]
  4. The following are not Biblical Christians but have turned from atheism to theism: Francis Collins, Longtime director of the Human Genome Project, professor Bill Phillips, winner of the Nobel Prize for physics, 1997, Sir Brian Heap FRS, former vice-president of the Royal Society, John Houghton FRS, former director of the Meteorological Office, co-chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ad currently director of the John Ray Initiative on the Environment.
  5. I am a silver medalist in Aerospace Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai, one of the best engineering schools in Asia. So although I'm not a scientist, I am scientifically informed, and I know what I'm talking about when I say that evolution theory is not credible.

It is worth noting that the pioneers of evolution were not scientists. Charles Lyell was a lawyer, and Charles Darwin was a dropout from Bible College. Universities such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Oxford and Cambridge were set up as Bible colleges by Christians who wanted to promote learning. These places have been taken over by atheists. The same applies to the Scientific American Magazine, which was started by a Christian, but now dogmatically supports evolution.

But there are many more atheist scientists than Christian scientists!

There are also many more atheist truck drivers than Christian truck drivers. This does not prove anything. Atheism is more prevalent than belief in God or the Bible in the West because for the last half century, the educational system in the West has been a hub for atheist indoctrination. Also see:-

Is man free or God sovereign?

I am able to choose my diet, my profession, my spouse, my clothes, etc. Thus, I am free. But I'm not able to choose my lifespan, which planet to inhabit, etc. Thus, I am only partially free. The Bible speaks of man's free will and responsibility (Deuteronomy 30:19, Joshua 24:15, Ezekiel 33:11, Luke 13:3). Man is free to wish or decide anything, but is not completely free when it comes to implementation.

The Bible also tells us that God is sovereign. We see His sovereignty in fulfilled prophecy, the constancy of natural law and the easy falsifiability of the Bible.

Both the sovereignty of God and the free will of man go hand in hand. For example in Acts 2:23, Jesus died as part of God's determined counsel but it was the "wicked hands" of the people who slew him. How is it possible for these two seemingly contradictory or mutually exclusive principles to coexist?

Firstly: Because God knows things in advance. He sent Jesus in the first century when he knew that the Jews and Romans would be the kind to crucify him. God did not send Jesus in say, 1000 BC, when the righteous king David ruled.

Secondly: Because God is almighty and therefore can perform miracles. The Assyrian emperor Sennacherib had the free will to attempt a conquest of Jerusalem (2 Kings 18:17) and the murder of its childless king Hezekiah. But God miraculously foiled his attempt (2 Kings 19:35-36) because if Hezekiah died childless, God's prophecy that he gave earlier (1 Chronicles 17:11-14) would be violated.

Thirdly: Thanks to the butterfly effect and the uncertainty principle, God can affect the course of events without suspending His natural laws. Thus, God can exercise His sovereignty with a minimal use of miracles.

To summarize:-
God is sovereign: Just as atheists could not stop the historical events that made the Jews proof of God's existence, atheists will not be able to stop any of God's other purposes; you will stand before God for judgment whether you like it or not.

Man is free: You can choose how to respond to the Evidence for God and The Main Message of the Bible, and you will be held responsible for your choice.
Man is free: You can choose how to respond to the Evidence for God and the Main Message of the Bible, and you will be held responsible for your choice.df
The Bible also tells us that God is sovereign. We see His sovereignty in fulfilled prophecy, the constancy of natural law and the easy ways to prove the Bible false. 

Both the sovereignty of God and the free will of man go hand in hand. For example in Acts 2:23, Jesus died as part of God's determined counsel but it was the "wicked hands" of the people who slew him. 

How is it possible for God's sovereignty to coexist with human choice? [Two seemingly contradictory or mutually exclusive principles]

Firstly: Because God knows things in advance. He sent Jesus in the first century when he knew that the Jews and Romans would be the kind to crucify him. God did not send Jesus in say, 1000 BC, when the righteous king David ruled.

Secondly: Because God is almighty and therefore can perform miracles. The Assyrian emperor Sennacherib had the free will to attempt a conquest of Jerusalem (2 Kings 18:17) and the murder of its childless king Hezekiah. But God miraculously foiled his attempt (2 Kings 19:35-36) because if Hezekiah died childless, God's prophecy that he gave earlier (1 Chronicles 17:11-14) would be violated.

Thirdly: Thanks to the butterfly effect and the uncertainty principle, God can affect the course of events without suspending His natural laws. For example, if a skeptic tried to do something that the Bible declares will not be done, God can use the weather to foil his plans without invoking a miracle.

To summarize:-
God is sovereign: Just as atheists could not stop the historical events that made Israel proof of God's existence, atheists will not be able to stop any of God's other purposes; you will stand before Him for judgment whether you like it or not.

Man is free: You can choose how to respond to the Evidence for God and the Main Message of the Bible, and you will be held responsible for your choice.

Was Hitler a Christian?

Hitler was an atheist but atheists try to pass him off as a Christian. The ammunition they have is:-

  1. Hitler often invoked "god" in his writings and speeches to inspire his countrymen
  2. Hitler was very friendly with the Catholic Church.

But these are just measures in political expediency. Hitler reveals his true (evolutionary/atheist) colors:-

  1. "The gulf between the lowest creature which can still be styled man and our highest races is greater than that between the lowest type of man and the highest ape." – quoted in Weikart, R., From Darwin to Hitler: Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics and Racism in Germany, Palgrave Macmillan, New York, 2004, p. 216.
  2. "The stronger must dominate and not mate with the weaker; this would signify the sacrifice of its own higher nature … for if such a law did not direct the process of evolution then the higher development of organic life would not be conceivable at all" – Hitler, A., Mein Kampf, (English translation by James Murphy, 1939), Fredonia Classics, New York, p. 262, 2003.

Scottish anatomist and anthropologist Sir Arthur Keith was fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in England and a contemporary of Hitler. See his testimony:

"The German Führer ... is an evolutionist; he has consciously sought to make the practice of Germany conform to the theory of evolution." – Keith, A., 1947. Evolution and Ethics, Putman, New York, p. 229. 

Even if these words of and about Hitler were not there, his actions speak for himself:-

  1. The Bible states that God has set up the system of sovereign nations (Acts 17:26). Thus, Hitler's expansionist ideology shows that he was not a Christian.
  2. The Bible asks us to love the Jews (Romans 9:1-5, Psalm 122:6); Hitler hated them.
  3. The Bible teaches that all humans are one blood, not different "races" (Acts 17:26). Hitler was a racist.

Thus, Hitler was an atheist and he did what he did because he was an atheist. He thought that through the holocaust, he was speeding up natural selection since he considered the Jews to be inferior to Aryans (native Germans).

I am able to choose my diet, my profession, my spouse, my clothes, etc. Thus, I am free. But I'm not able to choose my lifespan, which planet to inhabit, etc. Thus, I am only partially free. The Bible speaks of man's free will and responsibility (Deuteronomy 30:19, Joshua 24:15, Ezekiel 33:11, Luke 13:3). Man is free to wish or decide anything, but is not completely free when it comes to implementation.

The Bible also tells us that God is sovereign. We see His sovereignty in fulfilled prophecy, the constancy of natural law and the easy ways to prove the Bible false. 

Both the sovereignty of God and the free will of man go hand in hand. For example in Acts 2:23, Jesus died as part of God's determined counsel but it was the "wicked hands" of the people who slew him. 

How is it possible for God's sovereignty to coexist with human choice? [Two seemingly contradictory or mutually exclusive principles]

Firstly: Because God knows things in advance. He sent Jesus in the first century when he knew that the Jews and Romans would be the kind to crucify him. God did not send Jesus in say, 1000 BC, when the righteous king David ruled.

Secondly: Because God is almighty and therefore can perform miracles. The Assyrian emperor Sennacherib had the free will to attempt a conquest of Jerusalem (2 Kings 18:17) and the murder of its childless king Hezekiah. But God miraculously foiled his attempt (2 Kings 19:35-36) because if Hezekiah died childless, God's prophecy that he gave earlier (1 Chronicles 17:11-14) would be violated.

Thirdly: Thanks to the butterfly effect and the uncertainty principle, God can affect the course of events without suspending His natural laws. For example, if a skeptic tried to do something that the Bible declares will not be done, God can use the weather to foil his plans without invoking a miracle.

To summarize:-
God is sovereign: Just as atheists could not stop the historical events that made Israel proof of God's existence, atheists will not be able to stop any of God's other purposes; you will stand before Him for judgment whether you like it or not.