The Atheist Experience podcast discussed an interesting apologetic several years ago. Here is my interpretation of this thinking.
Imagine a board game called “Monopoly Plus,” an updated version of the popular board game. There’s a track around the outside of the board that’s divided into cells. Each player is represented by a token on the board—a dog, a car, a top hat, and so on—and each player in turn rolls dice to see how many steps to move. You start with a certain amount of money, and you can buy the properties that you land on as you move around the board. Players who then land on one of the owned properties must pay the owner rent, and the owner can pay to improve properties so that the rent is higher.
Here’s how you win: you must accept Jesus Christ as your lord and savior.
Yep, that’s a pretty bad game. The motivations within the game have absolutely nothing to do with how you win.
Now take that idea about a million times larger, and we have the game of Christianity®—ordinary reality filtered through a Christian worldview. It’s far more complicated than any board game. In Christianity, there are good things (love, friendships, possessions, accomplishments, personal victories, etc.) and bad things (illness, death, sorrow, disappointment, personal defeats, etc.), and skillful players maximize the good things and minimize the bad.
Immersed in this huge mass of complexity, we’re told that, in the big picture, it all doesn’t matter. To win the game you must accept Jesus as your lord and savior.
Why is the game of Christianity any less out of touch with reality than the game of Monopoly Plus?
Photo credit: Wikimedia
- “The Argument from Game Design,” a Nadder blog, 8/15/09.
- The Atheist Experience podcast episode 616, 8/2/09.