One of the ways to be a good ambassador for Christ is to be a good listener. Oftentimes, we are so busy trying to win the argument that we fail to listen to the person making the argument. I believe that we would be much more effective if we would just stop talking and start listening. It has been my experience that if you listen to an atheist long enough, they will give you the rope to hang their arguments with.
Specifically, I’m listening for internal contradictions or inconsistencies in their own view. If you are attentive, you’ll be able to identify and expose these inconsistencies.
Let me give you an example. This week I made a comment on Twitter that generated some hostility from abortion advocates. One person erroneously interpreted my pro-life stance as merely a religious position. This faulty assumption led her on a tirade against the God of the Bible. She believed that if she undermined my Christian faith, then she’d undermine my pro-life view.
As a general rule, I try not to get sucked into unfruitful conversations with atheists on social media. Of course, there is a time and place for it, but I didn’t think this person was open to truth. I was ready to let this go when she said something that caught my attention. She started to attack the moral character of God. To make her point, she brought up what she referred to as the “genocides” committed by God in the Old Testament. Clearly, she did not think God had the right to kill people in the Bible. In fact, she thought that these atrocities turned God into an evil monster.
This argument comes up with some regularity with many Internet atheists. My point here is not to answer this challenge specifically. What caught my attention was that she was adamantly pro-choice. In fact, her profile picture said, “Still Standing with Planned Parenthood.” She didn’t realize it, but her argument against God was inconsistent with her pro-choice convictions.
She strongly believed in a woman’s right to choose to kill her child through the act of abortion. On her view, the mother’s right to kill her child supersedes the child’s right to live.
With this rationale in your mind, consider her argument against God. She chastised God for taking human life when He used His right to choose. Think about these two claims next to each other. When the Creator of all life takes the life of one of His creatures, He’s a moral monster. However, when a woman takes the life of her child, she’s just exercising her right.
Do you see the blatant inconsistency? When it’s a woman making the choice to kill an innocent human being, she’s justified and commended. When it’s God making the choice to kill wicked people for their wickedness, He’s unjustified and condemned. But doesn’t the Creator have rights over His creation? If anyone is justified in taking life, it would be the Creator of all life.
This pro-choice atheist was caught in a dilemma. She could not consistently condemn God for taking human life while advocating for a woman’s right to do it. Obviously, if a mere creature has the right to kill another creature, how can she logically think the Creator of every creature does not? If she were actually consistent, she would be celebrating God’s right to choose. Of course, she won’t do that because her worldview is self-centered. To admit that God has any rights over His creation would call into question the way she lives her life. That is, if God is in charge, then she can’t be. So, rather than remain consistent in her view, she was willing to sacrifice reason at the expense of autonomy.