Two Kinds of Atheists

Luther Blackmon
Pasadena, Texas

Atheists generally fall into two classes: First, those who are atheists because of moral failure. These atheists realize that if there is a God who created us as we are, that is with a sense of moral responsibility, then this God will expect something of his creature and will call him to account. Not willing to face up to the demands of this creator, man decides to do away with him. This is like breaking the barometer to stop the storm, or shooting the diagnostician to cure the disease.

Then there is the fellow who is an atheist because he has been told that nearly all the really smart people are like that. He thinks it may be a sign of arrested mental development to accept the Bible account of creation. To say the least of it, the Bible is unscientific, he heard some learned professor say, and a fellow must not let a tag like that be pinned on him. So he reads a few books on how man has developed from one or two tiny cells of protoplasm up to the Einsteins, Edisons and Jonas Salks, and doesn't bother to examine the evidence on the other side, and becomes an atheist. Now he belongs to that select group of people who are so honest and open minded (?) that they cannot accept what they have been told the Bible says about the age of the earth, the age of man, etc. It doesn't seem to bother him that his intellectual tutors have not been able to give any sensible explanation as to how these tiny cells came to exist in the first place; or how they came to have life in them. (Life has come only from antecedent life, you know-- let's be scientific). He can't be bothered with such trivial (?) questions as (1) Origin of matter; (2) Origin of life; (3) Order in the universe: (4) The invariable laws of nature (laws but no lawmaker?). He brushed these questions aside and treats us to some scientific (?) language like "it may be supposed" or "it is not unlikely," "we are not far wrong in assuming", etc.

Webster says something about science being "knowledge" or "any department of systematized knowledge". It may be naive of me to suggest that anything labeled "scientific" should be subject to proof, and that there is a difference between fact and theory, but I will take that chance. I have no quarrel with true science, but I vigorously protest the practice of dignifying theories and wild guesses with the label of science. Take away God the Creator and you have to assume that "something" came from "nothing", or that matter is eternal; that life came from lifeless matter; that intelligent design seen in nature is not the result of a "designer", all of which is contrary to all known facts and reason I based on experience and observation. And that, my friend, is just about as "unscientific" as you can get.

Truth Magazine VII: 12, pp. 1a
September 1963