Chelmsley Wood Baptist Church faith//hope//love

  • A bit of atheism

    Dawkins, you've got to love him, he's one of the best arguments for faith around. People say, "well if that's what your God is like then I'd rather be an atheist" will have to come up with a better argument, because if he is the face of atheism I think I'd rather be a theist.

    Dawkins' recent outburst exposes the view purveyed by some atheists that it's the atheists and humanists that are calm reasonable and gracious human beings and the theists that are spittle flecked haters. Actually, all Dawkins is proving is that all human beings are flawed, no one system is any better than others and they are all open to (possibly even prone to) bigotry and gracelessness. I also accept that Dawkins is not really the only representative of atheism. Perhaps we should all be a bit more careful about how we pigeon-hole or stereotype people.

    From the theological point of view, the measure is not what you believe but how you act, and how you treat other people. You can draw your own conclusions on how Dawkins views people who didn't go to a certain college or are from a particular culture or faith. But whatever you believe, to treat people with grace and compassion and as people, surely that is what it is about, and that is what will help win people over to what you believe, or at the very least, mean they will listen to and respect your belief.

    And because in his view, all Christians are lumped together in this generic mass, he doesn't seem to get that some Christians are also secularists and do not mourn the passing of Christendom and agree that bishops shouldn't be given privileges and positions of power in government.

    Freedom of expression and freedom of conscience are good Baptist principles. Which means we will hear things we don't agree with, and are even appalled at. Whatever a person's beliefs and ethics though, when we start seeing another group of people as somehow less importance than us, or stupider than us, however we draw the lines, colour, education, culture, nationality, that's when we need to be careful and remind ourselves that they is no 'they' but only 'we'.




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Welcome to the blog

Neil (the minister) occasionally gets round to blogging so welcome to the trivia and ramblings of an erratic stream of consciousness.

Because we try to be properly Baptist, these views aren't necessarily the views of everyone who is part of the church family here.

We're not even sure they're Neil's.

Either way, we try not to fall out over it.

You can also follow Neil's personal and irrelevant twitter.

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