An Open Letter to Christians… from God

He speaks through Jared Smith at AtheismResource:

Dear Christian,

I’m not there. I wasn’t in the operating room when your mother had cancer, I wasn’t in the car when your best friend crashed into the median, I wasn’t there when your favorite sports team won the big game. I didn’t show up to your son’s baptism, nor was I present when he was born. I didn’t stop thousands of children from being abused in my supposed house of worship, I didn’t prevent the genocide against my own people at the hands of Adolf Hitler.

I have never been present in the most disease-infested, impoverished continent on the planet. I don’t make it rain, regardless of how many people put their hands together and beg for it. I’ve never been in your schools, your homes, your churches, or your workplaces. I wasn’t there when a maniacal young man killed 26 people, many of whom were toddlers.

Do you know why you cannot understand it? Because I simply do not exist. I’ve never existed. I have never been there with you. I have never intervened on behalf of you. I have never helped you acquire a job, or meet that perfect match, or find your car keys. Young children die every single day from starvation, cancer, AIDS, and a slew of other things. If I do not care about the most innocent among you, what makes you think I would care about someone perfectly capable of taking care of themselves?

Read the full letter. It’s worth it.

(Image via Shutterstock)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Pepe

    Reminded me of this video by darkmatter2525

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODetOE6cbbc

    • http://twitter.com/JavierEJSF Javier Fonseca

      Awesome! <3

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001835347434 חזן הומניסטי

      That was great Pepe!

  • C S

    An Open letter to ignoramuses who try to attempt Theology whilst attacking Christian Bible-belt fundamentalism. Here is why your argument fails, and why you should consider looking at the scholarly works that argue against the problem of evil.

    Hopefully you are not too lazy

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zw4s2UmlKmw

    • Helanna

      Am I too lazy to look at a bunch of tired old arguments relying on the same old fallacies, none of which focus on the only real thing of importance to me – actual positive proof of God’s existence? (And no, you don’t have any. Don’t try.)

      Yeeeaaah, basically. I’ve got shit to do.

      • indorri

        To be fair, that particular video was about the logical problem, which is not about “proof” (evidence) but is a purely deductive argument.

    • Baal

      When visiting people I don’t normally hang with, I regularly start off by calling them ignorant and once I’ve been there a moment, I launch into calling them lazy. I’m glad to see you do the same. It’s a rare strategy to get folks to listen to you (though in my experience it’s a good way to get ignored if not thrown out).

    • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

      As a stylistic complaint, please link your URLs rather than directly including them. The Disqus comment system tends to insert videos directly, otherwise.

    • The Other Weirdo

      God sets up the universe and creates the prototypical humans(Genesis). God fails to anticipate human free will(Genesis) and kicks them out of Eden(Genesis). God doesn’t explain why he prefers the sweet aroma of burnt sacrices as opposed to the burning of shrubbery, thereby introducing murder into the human psyche(Genesis). God is astounded that his creation is running rampant across the world and decides to smite them all(Genesis). God discovers humans have set aside their differences and are working together toward a common goal, a better understanding of God, so he screws them up(Genesis).

      God has been interfering in human free will since the beginning of time, if your(well, mine, really, as I am a Jew) holy book is to be believed. Why should you be able to say now that he can’t tell us what to do with our free will when he has clearly done so for thousands of years.

      Oh, and then God creates hell, which is the ultimate interference with human free will.

    • TheG

      Okay, watched the video because I’m not too lazy to spare some time for new arguments (but, apparently, you are too lazy to come up with your own words for this argument… but, nevermind).

      The problem with the Plantinga argument is that it assumes that evil only exists as a result of people practicing active free will. Unfortunately, there is passive evil as well. From hurricanes to many cancers to SIDS, there are plenty of evil occurrences each day that did not require a single person to make a conscious and overt use of their free will.

      Well, that and the Pantinga argument doesn’t prove that there is a god; it just says that it is possible. Most atheists will admit that there is a possibility that one or many gods exist, but it isn’t very likely. Possible does not equal probable. Even to Christian Fundamentalists who are too lazy to think past one flimsy conclusion.

    • Edmond

      Hopefully none of us are as lazy as a person who cannot explain the basis for their beliefs in their OWN words, without relying on pasting YouTube and Amazon links to do their explaining FOR them.

  • C S

    Educating ignoramuses part 2:

    Please open your mind and research the topic of “The problem of evil’

    take some time and stop being so lazy, look at what Theists are saying from a scholarly perspective, and maybe you will finally learn:

    ty

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Problem-Evil-Peter-Inwagen/dp/B00A1A67AG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1363307608&sr=8-1&keywords=van+inwagen+problem+of+evil

    http://www.amazon.com/Problem-Evil-Oxford-Readings-Philosophy/dp/0198248660/ref=pd_sim_b_4

    http://www.amazon.com/Evidential-Argument-Indiana-Philosophy-Religion/dp/0253210283/ref=pd_sim_b_4

    Educate yourselves, you just might learn why your arguments aren’t as great as you think they are. Try to be more open-minded and look at what the opposition is saying, I know it’s hard, but you can do it.
    I mean you are rational ‘free-thinkers’ right? Not lazy ignoramuses, yes?

    • phantomreader42

      Do you have the slightest speck of evidence that your imaginary god actually exists? No, of course you don’t, if you did you could have just presented it instead of babbling moronic nonsense. Without actual evidence for your imaginary friend, your pseudo-philosophical wanking is nothing more than worthless bullshit. You’ve got nothing.

    • indorri

      Would you actually speak with charity rather than come blazing in to insult the people you supposedly wish to educate.

      I only watched the video below since I don’t have immediate access to those books. And while I don’t think the logical argument is as strong as the evidential, I’m not convinced from that video it is refuted. The most obvious problem is that the free-will counter-defence isn’t established. While it could plausibly defeat the argument, it hasn’t been shown that free will exists. Moreover, the counter-argument depends on reified morality. Even if Epicurus fell into the same trap, the modern atheist has no need to do so. All it does is to suffice that things are defined as evil, that the being in question does not create that which is evil, and that that which is defined as evil exists. The only way out is to claim the evil things are not created by said being (which puts a whumper into a whole lot of other apologetics) or to redefine evil a la Calvinists. (Or to deny the triadomni-, obviously).

    • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

      no, you education yourself. hint: your god is only one of many. every argument you make in your favorite god’s favor, i can apply to 10,000 others and more. you don’t believe in most of them, and i don’t believe in all of them.

      you monotheists are all the same. you think the entire world of theology begins and ends with your silly little faiths that have barely scratched the surface of history, compared to some other traditions, some still going strong today, even.

      • Blacksheep

        The history of monotheism more than scratches the surface of history. The first archeological evidence for a people called israel is from 1206 BC. That predates the Gobekli Tepe by 300 to 400 years. The Torah began to be written in 950 BC – that’s 100 years before Hinduism, 200 years before Buddhism, and 300 years before zoroastrianism enters recorded history.

    • Achron Timeless

      I’m gonna take a leap and guess you work for or are otherwise associated with AbeBooks. They publish all of those, and it appears you’re just trying to drive sales.

      Sad.

      edit: bah, google-fu is weak at 3am, Oxford Press. But, I think the fact that I’m willing to admit my mistake shows I’m of a different inclination than you. Oh well =)

    • PietPuk

      And it always boils down to ‘God is mysterious’.

      How sad you are in your delusional fishbowl world.
      Your god is indestiguishable from non-existent.

      Let that sink in.

    • baal

      I make this point to various groups represented in the commentariat and I make it to you. If you have a point, make it. Demanding folks go off to spend their money and hours of their time to carry your water for you is insulting. It’s the burden of someone making an assertion (a positive argument in the jargon) to say what that argument is and why anyone else should support it.

      Also, theodicy (and it’s twin sibling, ‘free will’) is well known in the atheosphere. Investigation into the topic makes the top 10 list for reasons why atheists leave the churches they were raised in.

  • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

    @CS

    Plantinga is helping our point! God cannot create beings with free will and also determine them to do only what is good. Correct. This God, who is also supposedly omnibenevolent, thus set up a system whereby his creations do evil things and hurt other God-created beings. What does he do, watch people in pain and giggle? How is it logical to argue that all-good God gave us free will to do evil and then doesn’t help the victims of that evil one bit?

    This is my impression of your God: “Oh, well that guy used his free will to rape you. That sucks, I guess, but I gave everyone free will! Wait, you think this is my fault? No no, I’m God. I totally could’ve stepped in and stopped him (he chose to do evil, but I can choose to not let you get hurt while still recognizing his evil intent) but I didn’t because, hey, mysterious ways right?” And you know what? That God-concept is an evil, despicable, amoral bastard.


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