Ken Ham: Atheists Are Starting ‘Churches’ Because They Secretly Believe in God

I’ve been posting a lot about the “atheist church” that began in London and has since spread worldwide because I think it’s a neat idea for the people who enjoy that sort of thing.

If you miss singing as a group, listening to inspiring speeches, or being part of a community, the idea of a non-religious gathering has a lot of value.

Some will dismiss the idea wholesale because it’s “too much like religion,” but I don’t buy that. There are no mandatory beliefs, no Gods (or their messengers) to worship, nothing you have to take on faith. The “church” isn’t even about spreading atheism — it’s open to everyone who wants to celebrate life, listen to music, appreciate science, etc. You won’t hear anyone telling you not to believe in God if you attend one of the gatherings.

It’s just the sort of thing we need to help closeted atheists transition out of faith — it gives them something that resembles a church structure without all the bullshit that’s said and done within it.

And if it’s not for you, then don’t go. It’s that simple.

Ken Ham can’t wrap his brain around any of this, though. He read an article about the Sunday Assembly and it’s too much for him to handle:

… why would atheists do such a thing? If there’s no God, what’s the point? If when you die that’s the end of you and you won’t ever know you even existed, then why bother with starting a church? Why would atheists like these be so active in such a meaningless project?

Well, the Bible gives us the answer

Of course it does.

After quoting some verses that have nothing to do with anything, he gets to his reasons:

… there are no true atheists — they know there is a God and that’s why they want a system that copies the Christian worship.

Because they know there is a God, they have to work hard to try to actively suppress they truth. It’s like they hold their hands on their ears and yell: “No, I refuse to listen to what God is telling me.” And so they actively preach their atheism to try to block the truth they [willingly] reject. So sad.

Here’s the most obvious thing I’ve ever written: Ken Ham is wrong.

The Sunday Assembly follows a Christian worship model because, well, it works. Evangelical churches do an amazing job of getting Christians excited about their faith and eager to come to worship. But we can do many of the things they do right without falling into the Jesus trap.

And, again, the Assembly isn’t about preaching atheism. It’s just a way to gather, sing, and celebrate without referring to God or the Bible. Outside of a high school glee club (which you’re too old for) or rock concerts (which are expensive and don’t happen every few weeks), there just aren’t any places you can do those things outside of a church.

So Ken Ham is ignorant. What else is new.

If you’re interesting in checking out a local Assembly, founders Pippa Evans and Sanderson Jones will be visiting several American cities in November. Check out their schedule and consider coming to at least one of the gatherings so you can see for yourself what this is all about instead of taking Ken Ham’s word for it.

Which is good advice for just about anything, really.

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.