In their book UnChristian, David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons write, “Our research shows that many of those, outside of Christianity, especially younger adults, have little trust in the Christian faith, and esteem for the lifestyle of Christ-followers is quickly fading among outsiders. Re: My Nairaland Journey From Christianity To Atheism In Pictures. “[T]he community expects you to act a certain way, and will call you out if you don’t live up to those expectations. It’s a straw man and it’s intellectually weak. Which made me realize that even though atheists make up a rather small portion of our population, they are a very intriguing topic for Christians. And above all love. I was still going to church because I didn’t know how to come out as an atheist. Larissa Lee is on the Facilities Staff at Plum Creek Church. from the church and from Christianity. How could you convince such a person otherwise? Jayson proves that. (4) Spiritualism. He admitted that his failures to live up to his own strict ideals caused him to “hate” God. From Atheism to Christianity: a Personal Journey. I think most Christians are sincere in their efforts to convince an atheist that their religion is true, but most of the time they turn to intellectual arguments and these are generally a waste of time. We plead guilty to a literal reading of Scripture and a rigid adherence to what it teaches. And atheists are like, seriously? I have been a Christian for most of my life. In respect to atheism and Christianity, while there have been numerous notable books by Christian apologists addressing the various issues in regards to atheism and Christianity (Creation Science, Bible Archaeology, etc.) by bloodofthelamb(m): 9:05pm On Sep 13, 2018 Martinez19 : If a fiction tale by the moonlight is your reason for concluding, with certainty, that I was never a christian then I am sorry for you. Search for: POSTED: March 24, 2014 AUTHOR: Jim Spiegel. . Dr. Furches found five “setting conditions” in churches that are consistently associated with the formation of atheists: (1) Performance control. Atheism got involved in rejecting the experiential claiming that it was not evidence based. There was a lot of domino effect in play with this topic too. When Oxford academic CS Lewis wrote about his adult conversion from atheism to Christianity in Surprised by Joy (HarperCollins) in 1955 it became an apologetics classic, one still read by Christians and seekers to this day.. His story included the realisation that his belief in justice and morality required a transcendent moral lawgiver and that Jesus’ claim to be the Son of God … And now they are equally committed against the church. As a result, Christian atheism is entirely focused on earthly concerns and earthly justifications. But the Word of God is not simply a rulebook, but God’s way of creating faith and bringing us to Himself. That’s the first thing I would emphasize. If you want to convince an atheist that Jesus is real, love them. There are days that are still deeply difficult. I’m in a rare position to tell you the answer to both. I had a family member who was sexually assaulted by a pastor. Only when we realize our failures can we fully know God’s grace in Christ. The reasons that people are atheists are as varied and nuanced as the reasons people follow any religion. Sheer rebellion against God — the demonic insistence on wanting to be one’s own deity — can cause atheism. Many people ask me how to convert their christian or religious family / friends to atheism. Christianity doesn’t have the corner market on morality. They loved people. From Christianity to Atheism I did not grow up in an extremely religious family, but I was raised as a Baptist and to believe in God. The reality was, it was messy. Atheism. “In this church setting a person isn’t just encouraged to be certain of their salvation, the truth of the Bible, the fidelity of the minister, and other things. (1) Performance control. No questions, no exceptions. As an LGBT person, atheism accepts and tolerates more people than Christians do … Despite this supposed "Sacrifice" most of mankind according to Christian fundamentalists will go to Hell. The social climate of a congregation might foster “performance control,” even when its official doctrine teaches otherwise. Our fake confidence helps no one. I was brought up by atheist parents who for different reasons despised and opposed Christianity at any level. Clayton, a sophomore in college, was influenced by a couple of classes taught by a professor from The Jesus Seminar. Atheists Believe Strange Things Too. They sometimes engage in rituals which invoke miracles or ecstatic spiritual experiences.”, (5) Compulsive Certainty. These two men are the reason I am where I am today. I once knew an atheist who claimed he had never believed in God’s existence. Trigger Event.. Something happens to bring the conflict to a crisis such as a personal tragedy, discovery of one’s moral... Deconversion.. Second, the only advice I can offer is to pray. Few atheists make the leap to Christianity without first rejecting atheism in favor of agnosticism. Psychologist Joel Furches has studied atheists, looking for what led to their rejection of religion. The individual experiences stress because of one or more certain conditions, such as going to college where these views are ridiculed, gaining new friends who have different beliefs, failing to live up to the moral standards, etc. by Matt Slick | Nov 25, 2008 | Testimonies, Christianity. Ironically, it was C.S. What thought processes do people have that cause them to decide upon Atheism? Jesus was my whole life, my community, my job. I watched pastors misappropriate funds, have affairs, and abuse their staff… If anything, the atheists I knew were better people than the people who supposedly loved God enough to make a career out of it. Read everything you can about atheism, Christianity and religious history. Most of the atheists I know have read the Bible and several Christian apologetics books. If you can’t believe in those things, you can’t believe in Jesus. Same goes for the Exodus, or the genocide in Joshua, or Jonah and the whale. Of course, Lutherans too can go through these stages and become atheists. If you hear nothing else I say, please hear this: don’t be a garbage person in the name of Jesus. From Atheism to Christianity to Islam. I wasn’t missing that one “silver bullet” argument that would convince me. Lewis’ influential defenses of Christianity that would eventually prompt countless conversions to Christianity—and his influence continues today unhindered. Be the kind of Christian that argues with your life. There is a heavy pressure to perform and there is a consequence of shame or guilt if you fail.” [Dr. Furches also calls this legalism. Bishop John Shelby Spong long ago welcomed "the death of theism" and what it meant for Christianity (see his A New Christianity For A New World), and in that most literal sense, I can finally accept and embrace that I am a Christian atheist. … Less consideration is given to nuance or cultural features of the text.”, (3) Isolationism. To be honest, real life relationships where you live your faith consistently, are your strongest argument. How could someone believe there was no god at all? Why does the existence of denominations imply Christianity is false? A proper distinction of Law and Gospel makes that clear. He helped me make peace with doubt. They are expected to be certain. 0. I was a pastor for a little while actually, and then for two years I was a closeted atheist. From Atheism to Christianity. Besides my pastor, I owe a great deal of my faith to Jayson Bradley. When reading or hearing the stories of atheists, certain patterns tend to emerge. Or if they are pushed away from Christianity, what causes that? That being said, arguments, especially on the internet, can convince a person that religion really is the fairy-tale-inspired garbage that atheists say it is. (3) Isolationism. I expected him to be a fraud just like all of the others I had seen. The doctrines of vocation and the teaching of the Two Kingdoms free us to be involved in the world outside the church. He demonstrated love towards me consistently, regardless of how I treated him. I’ve had to rebuild my entire theological framework. 7) Christianity claims to be true, but there loads of denominations and they all disagree with each other, so it must be false. I’m certain he will have better insights because he knows the details of your situation. I did, when I was an atheist, but I changed my mind, and my reasons for doing so may be of interest to you in your own personal journey and attempts to … Religion is a purely human endeavor, and God is simply a projection of a person’s mind. Pray the Lord would turn your son’s heart and that your grandchildren would have opportunities to hear of the forgiveness Christ brings. From Christianity to Atheism? Or what makes an atheist become a Christian? We are sure of the truth of our faith. But sometimes Christians deconvert to unbelief. Do you find it difficult to believe in God or accept the claims of Christianity? Either demonstrate with your life that your Jesus is real or be quiet. Christianity is the most pro-social ideology out there: it is the belief that love is the ground of all reality (for God is love); that all creation, all life has its origin in love and is only intelligible in light of love; and that love has the power to overcome all divisions, all … Topics: Apologetics. It was devastating. Ram Gopal Varma – born into a Hindu family; claimed … The person often meets with the pastor, who might help or might provoke further alienation. First, I encourage you to speak with your pastor about this. From an intellectual standpoint, I came to realize that the science of evolution is pretty strong and the Christians I knew were aggressively opposed to me even asking questions about it. I am now at a stage where I want to get baptized, and I want to be out there (in the world) preaching the gospel. (2) Textualism. Christianity is one of three monotheistic Abrahamic religion, which originally developed from an offshoot of 1st century Judaism. Your email address will not be published. He made an immeasurable difference. So, after all of that, how did I make it back to Christianity? Saying that atheism is a religion is rather like saying that not collecting coins is a hobby. People don’t become atheists because they are angry at God or because they just don’t want to live under moral law. It made me wonder, “is religion a house of cards that we have to protect from questions?”. (3) Processing. The other reason that I couldn’t believe anymore was far more painful and personal. Morals and values run parallel through many belief systems, allowing for common grounds for discussion in all religions. Nothing shocked or offended him. The person struggling in these settings then goes through distinct stages: (1) Stressors. But Luther, with his spiritual trials and struggles (expressed in the German word Anfechtungen), teaches us that times of doubt and suffering can deepen our faith; he called it the theology of the cross. In particular, my studies in the philosophy of ethics and justice seemed to be at odds with certain Bible stories and principles. Furches found that atheists tend to be former churchgoers. Within that same time frame I had pastors betray me, church people lied about me, people who had known my family for 20 years gossiped about us. Atheism is defined as: the absence of a belief in a god or gods ; the belief that there is no god or gods ; People often assume that atheism is a religion, which it is not. Former pastor Ryan Bell converted to atheism. In broad strokes, Christian atheism is a spiritual approach using the teachings and example of Jesus while denying the existence of a literal God. Rather, he focuses on atheists, people who do not believe in God at all and are hostile to religion. Love the atheists in your everyday life, in your Twitter feed, on the public forums with you. 0. My husband knew the truth, but that was it. I just didn’t believe it. “[T]he individual does not stray far outside his or her church community, and does not entertain any sort of news or entertainment media which do not subscribe to the culture of the church.”, (4) Spiritualism. https://reknew.org/2020/06/from-christianity-to-atheism-and-back-again Lift up your son and grandchildren in prayer. Any type of uncertainty is seen as evidence of backsliding, disbelief, or misbehavior.”. He stresses that he is not referring to “disaffiliation,” when a person simply drifts away. I never wanted to leave. This book is incredibly well researched and leaves no stone unturned. He had honest conversations with me and never once tried to argue me back to faith, but he did answer anything I asked. Learn about topics such as How to Deal with Religious People if You Are an Atheist, How to Argue That God Does Not Exist, How to Become an Atheist, and more with our helpful step-by-step instructions with photos and videos. (4) Deconversion. Atheism Learn everything you want about Atheism with the wikiHow Atheism Category. Kamal Haasan – despite being born into a Hindu Brahmin family, declared himself an atheist; Goparaju Ramachandra Rao – Indian activist for atheism; wrote in We Become Atheists, "I was conventionally orthodox and superstitious in the days of my boyhood.I believed in the claims of divine revelations by my parental aunt." Treat them with respect, dignity, and kindness. Do you ever wonder what makes a person become an atheist? She has also done Youth, Worship, College, and Children’s ministry. Category: General, Guest Contributor To be sure, this psychological account neglects the moral and spiritual causes. An atheist is They are the great mystery. From Atheism to Christianity: The Story of C. S. Lewis is the spiritual homecoming story of Clive Staples Lewis, a careful and thoughtful scholar who spent fifteen years journeying the long road from atheism to theism and, eventually, to Christianity. The church we were in at the time was a good one and the pastor seemed genuine, so I watched him like a hawk for years. Maybe it could be explained that just as christianity moved beyond the experiential and got caught up in absolutism, moving from this is my experience and its effect in my life to this is categorically what everyone must believe. That is what Jesus would do. But at the time, I didn’t need an intellectual reason to believe, I needed to know if Jesus made any difference. Or do you see it as a series of events? I had seen and known all that Christ had to offer and I got to the point where I couldn’t make myself believe it was true anymore. ATHEISM AND CHRISTIANITY Atheism is a transliteration of a Greek word which means “without God.” While there are various categories of “disbelievers” and disbelief, in common parlance, atheism means to have no belief in the existence of God. But notice how much of this sounds like Martin Luther in the monastery. From Christianity to Atheism; Part 1 - OT Justice Sorry for the lengthy introduction that was the first blog. From Atheism to Christianity is the journey of Clive Staples Lewis and his 15-year journey from materialistic atheism to Christianity Author Joel D. Heck did a wonderful job of writing Lewis's story. Among the Lewis-led converts from atheism is former feminist and professor of philosophy, Lorraine Murray, who recalls: That, and only that, is what might convince them your religion is real. (YouTube screengrab) ... Barna Group study conducted among 16- to 29-year-olds shows that a new generation is more skeptical of and resistant to Christianity than were people of the same age in 1997. May the God of all peace also bring you peace and comfort as you bear this burden. In fact, he said, “Deconverts were often the most committed Christians in their church. Norm … Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site. 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