I am an atheist and an ‘unbeliever’ having been a Christian, a bible scholar, and a theologian for most of my life. So, I am now an apostate. This may offend those who are ‘adherents of the faith’ because I’m saying that I’ve been seriously deluded for much of my life, and so by implication think that you are too if you’re a Christian. Many will respond by saying that it does not matter. I partly agree, because we’re all practical atheists anyway. Besides, people are free to believe or not believe what they want in this part of the world. And, who wants to live in the real world anyway? Well, for me it matters because I want to know what is real and true, and I believe that the world would be a better place to live in if people thought the same.
My journey ‘coming out’ has followed two routes: (1) the argument from atheism and science, and (2) studying the Bible. I agree with Isaac Asimov who wrote, “properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived.”
1. The arguments made by atheists, which are based on reasoning, logic, and the discoveries of science. Some of the best resources on this are:
- God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens (2008)
Audio Book on YouTube, Part 1, Part 2.
- Outgrowing God: A Beginner’s Guide by Richard Dawkins (2019)
- The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins (10th edition, first published 2006)
- Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon by Daniel C. Dennett (2006)
- Why There is No God: Simple Responses to 20 Common Arguments for the Existence of God by Armin Navabi
- Why I am Not a Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927). Recorded lecture.
- The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Nonbeliever, selected and with introductions by Christopher Hitchens
- Why I am Not a Christian by Richard Carrier (2011)
- The Christian Delusion: Why Faith Fails edited by John W. Loftus (2010)
2. The Bible is the product of an evolving religious tradition from early Judaism to early Christianity. It is mostly mythological, and mostly unhistorical, i.e. mostly fictitious religious propaganda. Some of the best resources on this are:
- Seeing Through Christianity: A Critique of Beliefs and Evidence by Bill Zuersher (2014)
An excellent YouTube lecture here: https://youtu.be/_AdPoHDebjU
- Dr Richard Carrier’s books and videos (see YouTube). https://www.richardcarrier.info/
- The Christian Delusion; Why Faith Fails edited by John W. Loftus (2010) – Part 2: Why the Bible is not God’s Word / The Cosmology of the Bible / The Bible and Modern Scholarship / What We’ve Got Here is a Failure to Communicate (“the Bible debunks itself”).
- God: The Most Unpleasant Character in all Fiction by Dan Barker (2016)
Some may want to pray for me, though according to Hebrews 6:4-6 this would now be a waste of time. It is better that you think with me. I welcome the opportunity to discuss with you why I am not a Christian. Privately exploring the material listed above is a good place to start, especially if you’re afraid of being stigmatized for doing so.