Sunday, August 17, 2008

My Angle

I just want to know the Truth. And so, I am seeking and knocking. Will I find the Truth and have it opened to me? Only time will tell, but I invite you to come along with me in my journey.

I consider myself atheist. Yet, at the same time, I do not preclude the existence of a god. Even if science can discover every mystery in our universe, the elusive truth of why the universe even exists in the first place will never be known through computation, experimentation, and the scientific method. A god may very well exist.

I keep an open mind. If there is one thing that the history of science has taught us, it's that beliefs that are once held so firmly can become utter nonsense over time. It really isn't that long ago that top thinkers of their times believe that all matter was made up of four basic elements, or that the earth was the center of the universe, or that the earth was flat. And so I try to hold my beliefs as firm yet tentative; pliable to more accurate revelations.

I study religion. Somewhere between one to two billion people are without a religion. The balance of the six billion plus people of the world do have a faith. Many of those with faith claim some type of direct spiritual connection with the object of their worship. I feel like I am somewhat on the outside looking in, and so I am intensely curious of exactly what is going on. I understand how people can believe things that aren't true, even to the point of compelling the most altruistic or most horrific actions. But I would like to know if there is anything else, anything real, providing the same motivation.

I most diligently study Christianity. I study it because it is the religion I was raised with, but also because it is the largest major religion. Both Judaism and Islam have direct relationships to Christianity. Altogether, they make up over half the world population, over three billion people. Three billion plus people can't be wrong, can they? Well, that's what I am trying to discover.

I study Christianity with the eyes of a skeptic. I was raised Christian; Methodist in particular. I went to Bible school. I got confirmed. I would say that I even had faith for a while. I believed in the unseen and the unknown. At the height of my faith, I distinctly remember even praying that God (I use capitol letters when referring to the Christian God), for Him to use me as He best saw fit. The trouble is that I never felt anything, spiritually or otherwise. I was never able to discern that God was actually out there, communicating with me or being involved in my life in any fashion. Without any Holy encouragement, my faith and belief diminished to nothing. After a long period of apathy, my curiosity eventually grew to the point to begin studying the Bible. I now have more Biblical knowledge than I ever had before. My faith has not returned, but my skepticism has been born.

I have no qualifications, other than being human. I am not a master linguist. I am not a specialist in history, archeology, psychology, eschatology, hermeneutics, or any other field that would make me more adept to find the Truth. I just have the ability to read, to reason, to apply logic, and to apply the lessons that I have learned throughout my life.

I have no doubt that I will post errors ranging from simple typos to major philosophical blunders. Please forgive me, as I am only human.


  1. I went through a similar experience but, unlike you, I actually hated Christians and did everything I could to ridicule and weaken their faith. At least you have a mind to explore. This is your journey and, if you choose it, your own personal relationship with Christ.

    I admire you for sharing your questions and experience with others and I pray you find what you are looking for.


    1. Thanks, SK. I have never gotten to the phase of hating Christians, perhaps because of the version of Christianity in which I was brought up, and perhaps because I know too many very respectable believers. While my posts do have some biting satire at times, I try to respect all believers, as long as they do not prove themselves unworthy. ;-)

      Best wishes to you, and thanks for stopping by.

  2. You must read the book The Last Superstition by Edward Feser if you haven't already

    1. Hi Anonymous. I do not think that book applies to me. First of all, I do not consider myself a "New Atheist." I am fine coexisting with religions, for the most part. Furthermore, I would recommend that you read my blog before you recommend reading material for me. If you had, you would know that I do not have a problem with the existence of a god. One may or may not exists. However, the evidence is considerably stacked against the existence of the Christian God, as my blog thoroughly demonstrates.


  3. Your blog here is just what I've been looking for. I was trying to get a bible study site going, but I had no takers. Both believers and nonbelievers were equally uninterested. This is a great site.

    1. Thanks, learnerwp! I am fascinated by the Bible, myself. Believer or not, you and anyone else, is welcome to study and comment along with me. And if you see anything which does not add up, by all means, please set me straight.

      If you have not seen it already, to the right under the "Up to Matthew..." heading, you will find a link to "The Summarized Bible," which has my chapter-by-chapter summaries of the books of the Bible, now up to Matthew, excluding Psalm and Proverbs. I tried to make these summaries completely unbiased as I could.

      Additionally, I have done detailed study posts for the first five books (the Torah) and, as you can see, I am presently working through the Gospels.


  4. TWF,

    I've been a believer for about 6 years now. I too searched for truth, purpose, and meaning in life. I would like to encourage you and present some reliable and relevant (based on your skeptical view points on the Bible) resources to better equip you to seek Truth.

    You state in your bio,
    "I have no qualifications, other than being human. I am not a master linguist. I am not a specialist in history, archeology, psychology, eschatology, hermeneutics, or any other field that would make me more adept to find the Truth. I just have the ability to read, to reason, to apply logic, and to apply the lessons that I have learned throughout my life."

    I agree, and neither did I. When reading the Bible you must do a few things to fully understand what you're reading:
    1. You need to read the scripture within the context of the text. If you don't understand something read the passage before and after...
    2. Seek to understand the audience (to whom the book was written), and the historical background when each book was written.
    3. Pay attention to the words being used and how they are being used in context: there are many Hebrew words that have multiple stresses and meanings. For example- The Hebrew word love is has 11 known definitions/meanings.


    If you're looking for rock solid credible and objective evidence check out Lee Strobel's Case for Christ:

    Another great resource to all truth seekers:

    2 Timothy 3:16

  5. Thanks for stopping by, BB. I hope your faith serves you well. I would guess, by the tone of what you have written here, that it does.

    Have you studied the Bible yourself? If you are using the three precepts you list, you are sure to do well. :-) I would caution, though, on point #2 that it is important that you seek out multiple viewpoints, as there is often a "traditional" view based on the common stories associated with the books, and then there is the scholarly view based on contextual and archeological evidence.

    I have not only read Lee Strobel's Case for Christ, but have also watched the documentary which was made from it. Mr. Strobel does do a good job presenting his case for Christ. However, I would not call it "rock solid credible". If you go back and read it, I think you will be able to discern that Mr. Strobel takes a few critical leaps-of-faith and makes some assumptions which are not consistent with his journalism background. However, I am happy that his finding faith has helped him become a better husband and father.

    1. TWF,

      Yes sir! I read and study my Bible everyday. I stumbled upon your website looking for atheists arguments against faith,(1 Peter 3:15) so that 'I can give an answer to everyone who asks me to give the reason for my faith'-
      It's amazing what our minds can think of and justify away from the creator.
      I agree with you about leaps-of-faith... Mr. Strobel took all the evidence and came to the logical conclusion that Jesus was in fact the son of God and he died and was raised from the dead.
      Afterall, we all have a faith in something. Athiests place their faith and hope that there isn't a God, that life is simply random, and completly up to chance... If this is their truth, I pose the question; what's the meaning and purpose in life? Christians place their faith in God, and in the fact that he is complely sovereign, just, and loving... Life for an abiding Christ follower is all about serving and loving others.

      What made you turn away from the faith you once had?

  6. Hello again, BB.

    So you like a challenge and seek to provide answers? Excellent. :-) May I refer you to a post of mine with some challenging questions? Please have a read through of John the Baptist Leads the Way? and then answer how exactly John the Baptist fulfilled the prophesies. (It would be best to do so in a comment on that post, so that the content stays connected.)

    "It's amazing what our minds can think of and justify away from the creator. "
    "Athiests place their faith and hope that there isn't a God, that life is simply random, and completly up to chance..."

    These are some rather bold statement you make. If you just came to the faith six years ago, I suspect that your atheist experience is quite different from mine, because your understanding of atheism is quite different than mine. For example, I possess the same level of "faith and hope that there isn't a God" that I have that water is wet. In other words, it is an acceptance of reality as opposed to something hoped for and believed without evidence.

    "what's the meaning and purpose in life?"

    Below is how I answered that question before:

    This is an interesting question because it is never really fleshed out on the other side. If the God of the Bible is real, what is the purpose or meaning to life? Really, it's just to entertain God, but perhaps the believer would like to rephrase that to be the purpose or meaning is to love and be loved by God. So ultimately the answer to the question of what provides meaning and purpose is love. However, we know that the love of God is not mutually exclusive of all other loves; you can love God and love your spouse, your children, your parents, your friends, etc.

    Asking if an atheist can have purpose and meaning without God is like asking if you can love anyone else other than God. Clearly, that is possible.

    "What made you turn away from the faith you once had?"

    I invite you to read my story here.