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EDITORIAL: Atheism: why the society needs church

marciadottin, [email protected]

EDITORIAL: Atheism: why the society needs church

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WITHOUT?A?DOUBT, last Wednesday night’s NATION Talkback religious session was riveting, traditional Christian beliefs and practices being put to severe testing by some members of the public.
Among the antagonists were the “unbelievers” of the Barbadian atheist community which, we are told, numbers some 34 000. The group’s most outspoken member on Wednesday night, Maxi Baldeo, criticized NATION?Talkback organizers for only having Christians on the panel.
In the first place, it was essentially a Christian debate, whose nature was bolstered by the topic itself – Is The Church Losing Society Or Is Society Losing The Church? And while believers of other religions were not meant to be excluded from the public session, the debate and discussion were merely to examine the efficacy of the Christian church as it related to the guidance and inspiration of the community generally.
Of course, Mr Baldeo, presumably representing his band of atheists, didn’t fail to suggest that the practice of religion globally was dying. But more interesting was that the atheists should seek a presence at the Wednesday meeting to discuss the church and society. And of most stirring interest is that there are over 30 000 self-proclaimed members of them.
The mantra of the atheist, naturally, is that there is no God, there being for him or her no reasonable evidence of the Almighty’s existence – even in the face of an ordered, complex universe, imprinted with the image of some Intelligent Designer.
And society may expect more of this, for as the right to freedom of religious – or irreligious – expression is underscored and guaranteed, Christians will be hard-pressed to hold their faith in God, manifest in the person of Jesus Christ in whose name they hold themselves as saved by His resurrection.
But even if we were to set aside the Christian beliefs, the existence of moral absolutes like justice, truth and goodness could only be explained by an infinite Moral Lawgiver – or God. We do not hold that ethics are merely a matter of convention, agreement, charter, intuition, or genetic programming, but instead a revelation from a Lawgiver whose ethical nature provides adequate foundation for moral absolutes in human society.
Even atheists will consider it evil – if only by intuition; and society, abhorrent – because of its social destructiveness; and a jury might agree it is despicable because the majority so vote. But none of these subjective, human-based ethics can adequately account for the fact that murder is absolutely wrong, or so the massacre of innocent children.
This is the moral argument for the existence of God, a proffering not only that God must be the source of all absolutes, but that His existence justifies the Christian understanding of why society needs the church.