Updated: Sep 3
I’ve had the rash-causing pleasure of responding to Matty Walsh before here on Godless Mom, so it’s no real surprise to me that he’s once again said things about atheists that are not true. This time, though, there’s a little extra sting to that grating, raw feeling anything Matt says induces. This time, he’s said atheists are as bad as the hyperwhite-toothed crook, Joel Osteen.
I know. I had to pause and take a breather, too.
Mattski says that,
An atheist is easier to save than a heretic. Put another way, it’s better for someone to reject Christ than to make up their own version of Him.
No one is rejecting Christ. Rather, we’re rejecting the assertion that he was the son of god, rose from the dead and fluttered up to paradise with Daddy. You can change that though, Matt, by just offering us demonstrable evidence that it’s all true. We’ll stop rejecting those claims if you prove them. G’head then. We’re all eagerly waiting.
It’s better for someone to hate the true God than to construct a fake one out of pieces of the real one and fall in love with their creation.
Hate? Ohhh, Matty, what a skewed little worldview you have. How does one hate something that doesn’t exist? Mattalicious, let me ask you this simple question, just for clarity’s sake: do you hate leprechauns? Because if I hate God, you have to hate those little gold-hoarding drunkards. It’s amusing how your own logic, once it’s removed from the context of your specific religion, makes you look like Donny Trump teaching a class on tact: completely, the fuck, lost. You must be a man filled with hatred, Matt, for all the gods you don’t believe in. I imagine you sing it to the tune of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,
I hate Ganesh and Vishnu, Anansi and Thor, Ares and Atlas, Ishtar and Isis… ♪ ♫ ♬
Here’s the thing: We all feel a longing for something. We all yearn for fulfillment, for happiness. We are all thirsty. We are all hungry. And in that hunger and that thirst, that longing, we will feel a certain amount of suffering and even despair. Jesus tells us that feeling is there for a reason, not to be afraid of it, but to come to Him to be satiated. He is the bread of life (John 6:35). But so long as we live as sinners in this fallen world, we will not be completely and permanently satiated. We will stumble and fall and feel that emptiness once more, and then we will return to Him lost and hungry and penitent, and this process will continue until we can finally drink directly from “the spring of the water of life” in Paradise. Until then, we will cry in agony to the Lord out of the depths of our sin, and the more we hunger and thirst for the eternal cup, the better off we will be. And the more we reject sinful pleasure and indulgence, the more acutely we will feel the pain of our separation from Him.
I’m sorry, Matt. You lost me when you started channelling Deepak there. I’m not entirely sure it’s the spring of the water of life in paradise you’re sipping, Fancy Pants. I think someone might have spiked your Jesus juice.
Joel Osteen wants to satiate the hunger and cure the sadness with false and selfish hopes. But it is better to live hungry and sad — as many atheists do — than to be filled with lots of sugar and happy thoughts
Curious, how do you know “many” atheists live hungry and sad? Do you have data you can refer to? I mean, I know this is just my personal experience, but I do converse daily with a great many different atheists from all over the world, not to mention the fact that I am part of the third generation in a family of happy atheists, and all I hear is how freeing and joyful it is to shed the shackles of dogma. In collecting all of Your Stories of Atheism, I have heard so many stories of depression, anxiety, addiction and fear eliminated by leaving religion. I know an overwhelming number of genuinely happy atheists, myself included. So, you can see why it might come as a surprise that many atheists live hungry and sad. I’d accept it as fact though if you could back your claim up with some peer-reviewed, methodologically sound data.
There is only one thin wall that separates God from the atheist who desires truth but hates the Answer.
No one hates your answer, we just don’t believe it. A problem easily remedied with evidence. Off you go, now. Go collect your evidence and bring it back to Mommy and we’ll take a look at what you’ve got.
In the meantime, you’ve got your rage-on throbbing for a man who’s only taking advantage of the very thing the religious tout as a virtue: faith. He’s standing in front of a crowd of people who have been told it’s okay to take things on faith alone, and that researching what the facts are is unnecessary, so long as your gut says to believe it. He is leading this flock of people who have been raised to think faith is something to be proud of, and asking them to take a few more things on faith.
You think that when Osteen asks his followers to have faith in him, he’s gone too far. I think that when your holy book asks me to have faith in it and the things it asserts, it’s gone too far. What you think people should believe and what Osteen thinks people should believe are no different from each other. Neither set of beliefs has any demonstrable evidence to back them up, and each requires that you take a leap of faith to incorporate it into your worldview. For you to say one leap of faith is better than the other is absolute and utter gibberish. The fact is, if you want to stop men like Osteen from reaping mountains of rewards for lying to his flock, you have to stop selling faith as a good quality. Instead, you should be promoting critical thought – “does this man really have my best interest at heart? Could he be lying to me?”
The fact is, if you want to stop men like Osteen, you need to start acting more like an atheist.
Yes, Osteen’s version of your faith isn’t any better than atheism, but then, neither is your version of it, is it, Matthew? You’re both taking a giant leap at nothing, based on tingles in your testes. Neither is better than atheism, because atheism is the only option of the three that deals with the real world around us. It’s the only option that requires honesty about what we can and cannot prove.
Joel Osteen’s version of Christianity is no better than atheism, because Christianity itself isn’t better. Nor is Islam, Hinduism, Voodoo, or any other faith-based religion under the sun. None of it is better, because atheism wins out over them all. You’re all lost, Matt. You’re all drowning in your own faith, clutching desperately to strawmen to stay afloat, when all you have to do is put your feet on the real, solid ground beneath you.