If I were to ask you what is more evil (or dangerous) between an atheist and a "liberal christian" how would you answer? I know how I would answer - I would rather deal with a wolf that dresses like a wolf!
I recently posted an obituary to express my reflections and sadness over the recent death of fervent atheist Christopher Hitchens. I thought it worthwhile today to add one closing postscript on the life of Hitchens. There is some sort of delicious irony when an atheist schools a professing Christian on Christian doctrine. I have featured posts on this before, most particularly when Penn Jillette (a very publicly recognized and vocal atheist) rebuked professing Christians who don't evangelize and/or warn about hell. There was also the stunning moment when Kirk Cameron schooled Stephen Hawking on the scientific method!
Today, I will share a great Christopher Hitchens moment when he does a better job of exposing "liberal theologians" for the frauds they are than many others who fill pulpits that are silent on the issue. I was unable to find the video of this so we will have to settle for the transcript of this beautiful exchange between Christopher Hitchens and a liberal priest.
Liberal Priest: The religion you cite in your book is a generally fundamentalist faith of various kinds. I’m a liberal Christian, and I don’t take the stories from the scripture literally. I don’t believe in the doctrine of atonement (that Jesus died for our sins, for example). Do you make any distinction between fundamentalist faith and liberal religion?
Hitchens: I would say that if you don’t believe that Jesus of Nazareth was the Christ and Messiah, and that he rose again from the dead and by his sacrifice our sins are forgiven, you’re really not in any meaningful sense a Christian.
Sewell: Let me go someplace else. When I was in seminary, I was particularly drawn to the work of theologian Paul Tillich. He shocked people by describing the traditional God—as you might, as a matter of fact—as “an invincible tyrant.” For Tillich, God is “the ground of being.” It’s his response to, say, Freud’s belief that religion is mere wish fulfillment and comes from humans’ fear of death. What do you think of Tillich’s concept of God?
Hitchens: I would classify that under the heading of Statements That Have No Meaning—At All. Christianity, remember, was really founded by Saint Paul, not by Jesus. Paul says, very clearly, that if it is not true that Jesus Christ rose from the dead, then we the Christians are of all people the most unhappy. If none of that’s true, and you seem to say it isn’t, I have no quarrel with you. You’re not going to come to my door trying to convince me. Nor are you trying to get a tax break from the government. Nor are you trying to have it taught to my children in school. If all Christians were like you, I wouldn’t have to write the book.
I'll take a Hitchens any day over a cowardly and passive "minister". He will be missed and I sincerely hope that Hitchens repented of his wicked rebellion and trusted in Jesus Christ before his heart stopped beating.
Weekend A La Carte (February 28)
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