Skip to comments.Is Christopher Hitchens about to convert? (Could he become a Christian?)
Posted on 12/10/2011 8:17:18 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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As I stated in my previous post I accept your premise. I would be concerned about anyone who considers people of Faith to be boring. If one is looking for some flashy, exciting new-age truth, there is none to be had; only a rehashing of old heretical beliefs or paganistic ideals. In truth, the people of Faith are the ones responsible for developing a vibrant and exciting body of knowledge and thought all it takes is the desire to explore it.
Truth be told, there is no such thing as “goodness sake” in my opinion. At least, not as defined by atheists. Being good is a moral condition and is not susceptible to the whims of the intellect. It seems to me that when those who advocate goodness as purely a socio-economic paradigm and take it out of a theological realm we succumb to a dictatorship of relativism, usually expressed by whichever strong-man is in charge at the time. 100 million + people were killed in the 20th century by those who thought they had the “answer”.
For me, the wonderful thing about living in faith is that it is never finished unfolding and acting in my life. God is awesome and exciting.
“So if one is a non-believer and gets truly sick, it is ok to trash his/her character, but if a believer gets sick, you seem to have empathy to their sickness. You make me sick.”
He wasn’t just an atheist. He delighted in trashing Mother Theresa, a woman who worked tirelessly to help the unfortunate.
In later life, Russell concluded that injustice in the world constitutes a moral argument against the existence of God Himself. But then, he found himself in a dilemma. If there is no moral standard, why even suggest that there is such a thing as injustice?
He began to think that if there was no moral law, and no God, that mankind had to live as if there was one, because without it, pain, suffering, death, rape, mutilation, oppression, and cruelty were our only options.
I told him once in DC after he spoke to the FR, “God picks the least likely to do his work”. I hope that sinks in some day.
Servile love, like that of a servant, is the type of love that man has for God when he fears punishment for sin as his motivator. Some people will refer to "mercenary love" as that type of love which pursues good for the rewards that accompany it. But the goal of the Christian life is neither avoidance of punishment or the receipt of rewards. Servile and "mercenary" love can be steps along the way but they are not the goals.
Filial love, or love of God for His own sake, is our highest level of love. It is the type of love that can love another, even an enemy, because one loves what God loves because He loves it.
Whether a "religious person" understands this or not, depends on the level of love which he experiences. Not everyone's capacity for love is the same.
There are those who would argue that true charity cannot be practiced without loving God for these reasons.
Your brother seems to suggest that his love is servile at this point. As you have pointed out, that's OK but there is something higher. Unfortunately, these types of threads on FR seldom seem to bring it out.
Live and learn, I always think of Faulkner when I see that title but now I'll have to check the one by Neuhaus out.
As for Hitchens, I won't hold my breath but I will continue to pray for him. A lot of people sure would think it's a miracle if he became a Christian and hung around a while like Malcolm Muggeridge did, making all his old allies look foolish.
“I pray for him because we are commanded to love our enemies, and if I can actually be concerned more for his own soul than what it can do for whatever cause of mine, no matter how just, it will do my own soul well. And if I can pray for him for his own sake, not my own souls, then we both shall be better yet.”
Beautiful prose there...thanks!
As Chesterton noted, Christianity is the only religion that allows God to be an atheist (Why have you forsaken me?).
Asking God why He has forsaken you seems to me to be the oppoaite of Atheisim. But I get what he meant.
Hitch is a barometer of how far America has fallen. In the ‘70’s, reading him in Newsday I knew that no one to the right of Stalin could have stomached him. Along comes the 90’s and the Clintons and...
In comparing the Evil perpetrated by Believers vs Non- believers you may want to take a glance at history before reaching the conclusion that you have expressed.
I think it’s important to remember at times like this that God loves Christopher Hitchens just as much as He loved Mother Theresa, and more than any of us love our own children....
If God can convert Paul then Chris H is a snap for Him. See Romans chptr 9.
I had my own Chambers type moment when God laid his finger upon my forehead.
I started going to church to appease my girlfriend....(now wife of 32 years)
The pastor explained that darkness has no power over the light by this example:
Imagine siting in a huge stadium in complete and total darkness, darkness so dark you cannot see your hand in front of your face....Now someone lights a match across the stadium...a single match stick...hundreds of feet away
No matter how dark it is, one single light from a match can shatter the darkness and overwhelm it...
If a single match which has almost no power to illuminate, how much more does the Light of the world have power over darkness (evil)
That really blew me away
So the concept of a "deist bible" is an oxymoron.
But Ranger, you are close to the mark when you ask "what's the difference" between an atheist and a deist.
As an atheist myself, I see that the difference between my unbelief and "belief in god" is a relatively short step compared with "belief in god" versus "belief in the God of the Bible" which is an enormous chasm.
As an atheist for the last fifty years and a conservative for over forty, I have become convinced that the truth or falsity of an idea is in no way related to whether that idea is "comforting".
I do believe Mark Judge was on the mark when he wrote that Hitchens' Vanity Fair essay was "powerful," but it was in no way comforting nor hopeful for this life nor for any other. It was rather fatalistically depressing.
What does a title reveal? Vanity Fair's teaser title was, "Christopher Hitchens Takes on Nietzsche: Am I Really Stronger?," and his title at the top of the page was, "Trial of the Will." Neither title implied anything beyond the psychological and the physical.
Hitchens' mentioned God three times. Twice in the sense of good or bad random fortune. Once used as a "gotcha" done to him by a Christian radio enterviewer.
The remainder was a powerful elaboration on why the illness which has not yet killed him has not made him stronger.
At the end, Hitchens wrote: "So far, I have decided to take whatever my disease can throw at me, and to stay combative even while taking the measure of my inevitable decline. I repeat, this is no more than what a healthy person has to do in slower motion. It is our common fate. In either case, though, one can dispense with facile maxims that don't live up to their apparent billing."
See what you might think: Trial of the Will.
Would you like a cup of hot cocoa with your:
If you believe there is no God or if you believe there is a God, you are on equal footing. In both cases one is faced with proving or disproving the existiance of something. If you believe in God you honestly are holding that belief solely on faith unless you are nuts. If you beieve there is no God, you again are taking it on faith. It's kind of like the Higgs Boson. Some hold the belief it exists. sure they may eventully prove or disprove its existance. Certainly it's an easier task than doing so with the concept of God. I see no superior postion of that of an atheist with regard to truth. Both sides are taking their position on mere faith.
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