Life After Death And The Atheist Apologist

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Martin, Jul 23, 2007.

  1. Martin

    Martin
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    I have often wondered why some atheists feel the need to argue with Christians, and other believers in life after death, about the existence of life after death. It seems to me that the atheist’s argument is a waste of time. After all, why spend a lot of time arguing against something if you believe it is not real? Nobody that I know goes out and writes books proving that Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, or the Tooth Fairy are not real. Why not? Because those persons don't exist. We believe they don't exist, we know they don't exist, so we don't waste our time trying to prove they don't exist. If I meet someone who believes in Santa Clause I am not going to argue with them or try to prove to them that their belief in Santa is childish, silly, or wishful thinking. Why not? Number one I know that Santa does not exist and number two their belief in Santa is not harming them or anyone else.

    Since atheists don't believe in life after death why do some of them spend so much time trying to prove it does not exist? After all, if death means that the person totally ceases to exist, then it does not matter what a person believes about life after death. Why not? Because, if that were the case, nobody would ever know the truth. Consider these words by Dr Gary Habermas and Dr JP Moreland:

    "Some philosophical considerations are worthwhile here. While our greatest fear may be experiencing nonexistence, a moment's reflection shows that this could never be the case. No one could ever experience and then report back to us a state that denies our sense experience by its very nature. Therefore, we will never experience nonexistence. What we may fear the most could never happen, for this is a contradictory notion. Further, even in a worst-case scenario involving the nonexistence of the next life, we could never know this to be the case experientially." -Pg349 (Beyond Death).

    I agree with that one hundred percent. If there were no life after death then nobody would ever know there was no life after death. Why not? Because you can't know anything if you cease to exist. Therefore for anyone to argue against life after death seems a bit silly to me. After all if there were no life after death, the world's most hardened atheist, the world's most faithful Christian, and the world's most brutal murder would all be in the same boat of unconscious nonexistence five seconds after they die. What is more none of them would know it. Nobody would know they were wrong and nobody would know they were right. In fact, if there were no life after death, the person would not know they were dead nor would they even know they had ever lived. Get the picture?

    If these atheist apologists are so sure there is no life after death then it seems to me that they are wasting their time by arguing against it. After all what are they proving? Nothing, and you can't prove nothing.

    However I am here to report some good and bad news. For the believer in Jesus Christ there is not only life after death, there is eternal life with Christ and the saints in glory. For the unbeliever, of whatever stripe, life after death will bring judgment, pain, and regret in the uttermost.

    So not only is there life after death,
    there is judgment after death.
     
    #1 Martin, Jul 23, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 23, 2007
  2. Jkdbuck76

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    Most atheists will admit to being agnostic....that is, they don't know.
    They would tell you that there is no positive proof or evidence that
    there is a Creator God. Fewer will dogmatically say "there is no God"
    because they know that they cannot pass thru the entire universe
    past, present and future and conclusively say He isn't there. So what
    they say is, "there is no proof."

    And in my personal experience in dealing with them, they don't want
    to believe that there is a God because if there IS a God, then He is
    the Landlord and He has rules.

    It is insane to me that someone could behold nature, the heavens, life
    and all the rest of creation and say "there isn't a god. Nothing + Nobody = Everything."
     
  3. just-want-peace

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    BINGO!!!!

    They know deep down that there is "something/someone" far greater than themselves, but to acknowledge such is to indirectly proclaim that "--I must account to this 'something/someone' for my actions on earth; and I WILL not be beholden to any other than myself!"

    Same reason evolution is so resistant to ANY head-on confrontation.

    After all, if we are nothing but a higher species of beast, we can act like animals and not be accountable to any one!

    These folk are to be pitied!!!!
     
  4. Analgesic

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    Bingo. Any atheist who knows anything whatsoever about logic will admit that he's ultimately an agnostic and his atheism is a matter of belief, since it's impossible to prove the non-existence of something.

    The point would seem to be better directed at materialists than atheists.
     
  5. Martin

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    ==That is true. However I was directing my argument against those atheists who do argue against life after death (I refered to them as atheist apologists). I know they are out there because I have seen several articles written by atheists. My arguments would certainly not apply to someone who just did not know for sure.
     
  6. just-want-peace

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    One does wonder why someone would exert so much intensity to denying something that "doesn't exist".

    Mayhaps they are trying more to convince themselves rather than others; then again, misery DOES love company. Sorta' fits old Willy's quote - "Methinks he doeth protest too much!"

    As I said earlier, these are to be pitied.
     
  7. TCGreek

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    1. Martin, where is Antony Flew now on the scale? CT ran an article sometime back that he has just about given up his atheism.

    2. Regarding life after death, I have that the highly esteemed John Stott is now agnostic about it all, no long an annihilationist. What do you know?

    3. I am not much of an philosophical apologist. I just dabble a bit.
     
  8. Magnetic Poles

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    I may be able to shed some light on some of these questions. Although I am not atheist, I have two very close friends who are. I have asked them the very question in the OP (the Santa, Tooth Fairy thing).

    They said that if they lived in a society where the majority of the population DID believe in Santa Claus; where these people who worship Santa tried to use the government to force us to abide by the rules of said creatures; maintain that the US is a Santa Clausian nation; that our money said "In Santa We Trust", then they'd speak out against Santa.

    They have also told me that they are strongly atheistic toward the Judeo/Christian God, since they see logical contradictions in the attributes of God. They maintain that Christians are also atheists toward other gods, like Zeus, they just are atheistic toward one more god than we are.

    I would add that being an atheist and not believing in an afterlife are two different things. Once could conceive of a situation where there was no god, but that an afterlife was still real.

    As you can imagine, we have some very interesting dialogs.
     
    #8 Magnetic Poles, Jul 23, 2007
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  9. Martin

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    ==Flew is now a deist. I don't recall his views on life after death (etc) but he certainly believes in intelligent design. He also favors Christianity above the other world religions. However he is not a Christian (yet).

    ==Nothing, I will have to look that up.
     
  10. Martin

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    ==That is true but if there were no God then the idea of any sort of good afterlife seems unlikely. I don't think wandering around the place alone, invisible, and not being able to communicate with others who have died would be positive at all. Sure it might be fun to haunt some houses (he, he, he) but after a period of time that would get old. Mind you, it might take a while for me to get bored (I have seen plenty of horror movies). However since there is a God (yes I am use presuppositional apologetics) that seems like an unlikely scenario. Since there is a God it is more likely that the afterlife has a purpose and does not consist of wandering around the place. God, of course, has revealed that purpose to us in His Holy Word. He has not left us in the dark. There are no ghosts in the attic and dead people don't live in their old homes or favorite hotels. When a person dies they either enter into the presence of Jesus or they are cast into torment. That does not mean that I reject the idea of haunted houses (etc). I believe in hauntings. However those events are demonic in nature and are not caused by ghosts.
     

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