bibleWhen I reblogged (here) The omnimalevolence of atheism by insanitybytes22 I just figured most of my readers would just head over to ‘s blog to see what’s so interesting. However some of my readers left some good comments. In fact, PrayThroughHistory and Allallt actually proceeded to have a good debate.

When quoted Isaiah 5:20, “woe to those who call good evil, and evil good…” (here), provided this reply.

The irony is the “those who call good evil, and evil good” rebuke is that nothing in religious philosophy protects one from making the exact same mistake.
After all, given Adam’s first sin (or was it Eve?), was it not God that scorched the earth and allowed suffering and evil and predation and misery and torture to be rife through the pages of our history (and their future)?
Was it not God that drowned its creation? That turned Lott’s wife to salt?

And religious philosophies would ask that we call that ‘good’. (from here)

Not too long ago I wrote a post on Isaiah 5:20, CALLING WHAT IS EVIL GOOD , AND WHAT IS GOOD EVIL EVIL. Based upon what I have learned from studying the Bible, I think offered a decent reply (here and here). He compared the evil that God allows to what we do when our children do wrong. When our children do wrong, don’t we punish them? If we are God’s children, should we not expect God to punish us? I would just add one thought. If there is no God, then exactly how is it that we know what is evil? We evolved an understanding of evil?

remained unsatisfied. Here is the core of what he said.

Why is the freewill of so many of us destructive? Freewill has an explanation as to its existence. Now, I suspect it is essentially an evolutionary thing. However, within religious worldviews the explanation is essentially theological. I’m not sure how one would square that; freewill can be destructive, yet (presumably) God is the explanation as to where it comes from. (from here)

Both ‘ reply (here) and ‘s counter (here) are quite instructive.

Think about eternity. Then contemplate how began his reply.

I think the stumbling block in such conversations is akin to the blind men describing the elephant. (from here)

Isn’t our understanding of God and His doings limited to a small segment of time, a tiny spot on a small planet? That’s why I wrote BLIND TO ALL BUT OUR SELF. If we make too much of what we know, we make too much of almost nothing. We can believe the Bible and hope for salvation, but to believe God is evil? What do we know that justifies such an opinion of the God who created everything, a seemingly infinite universe?

I have tackle the Problem of Evil in previous posts.

If I had the definitive answer, I suppose my posts would be famous, but that is not yet the case. I have faith that God is real and good. I hold that belief for what I think rational reasons. Nevertheless, some choose believe otherwise. Why? I think the fundamental problem is this. We tend to think we deserve the very best — when we don’t.

God holds the keys to eternity. He has no reason to share eternity with anyone who is less perfect than Himself. Why should He?

Consider one of the arguments that some people use against traditional marriage. “Who would want to spend their whole life married to the same person?” You don’t want to do that? Then what makes you think God wants to spend eternity with you?

I don’t know much about heaven. I know very little about what will happen after I die. I just know that before I am fit to spend eternity with a Holy God, that God has a great deal of work to do on me. I suppose that is why from time-to-time I think of this verse.

Philippians 1:6 New King James Version (NKJV)

being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;

And if He thinks He has to spank me, my family, my friends, and my neighbors from time-to-time, then so be it. That’s still better than the alternative.


  1. Allallt, like all, and I mean all atheists hallucinate their own meaning for the Bible, assign that hallucination to Christians and then demand that Christians explain the hallucination.

    I have confronted Allallt many times with the actual, non-hallucinated meaning of things (whatever the subject) and his reply is the usual atheist reply:

    a personal insult.

    Atheists make book on getting people, especially Christians, to buy into their hallucinations.

    Once the Christian does that, the atheist has no problem leaving him standing there looking stupid with his teeth in his mouth and his pants down around his ankles, .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @silenceofmind,

      You are absolutely certain that I am a hallucinator bent on making Christians look stupid? You’ve made it very clear that you include me in your description.

      ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle


      1. Keith,

        Yes. That is because you have to be that way to be an atheist.

        It takes a certain kind of intellect to believe with religious fervor that everything just happened all by itself.

        Obviously, you feel put upon by such an accurate generalization, but do you think Christians would feel the same way if I accused every last one of them of believing that Jesus Christ is Lord?


        1. @silenceofmind

          Please be careful of how you are perceived. Whatever our intentions, if they are wrongly perceived, we are not likely to have the effect we desire.

          You are familiar with the term militant Atheist. Without question, such people do go to extremes in “proving” their claims. To try to prove God is evil is, of course, absurd, and to such a claim we must calmly object.

          Keith does not fit the description of a militant atheist. Usually, he has enough sense avoid applying the term atheist to himself. In my experience, Keith is smart, lucid, and well-spoken (I would say well-written, but I don’t think that expression works as well.). Moreover, he has no interest in picking a fight with Christians. However, Keith has observed that some Christians are reflexively hostile to nonbelievers. That we are not suppose to be.

          We are NOT suppose to be militant Christians. At least, we should not be attacking people just because they are not Christians. Instead, we should entice others to become Christians by allowing the light of our Savior to shine through us.

          Earlier this year I wrote a post that considered the Biblical definition of a fool.

          That research reinforced my conclusion that we are unwise when we call another person names or belittle them. Instead, when appropriate, we should speak of and react to bad or foolish behavior. Even though that may be your intent, it is not coming across that way. It looks like you are judging Keith, and that job belongs strictly to our Maker.

          Is Keith unwise when he chooses not to accept the evidence of God’s existence as conclusive? I think so. However, this is a heart issue, and only God can change Keith’s heart. Will He? How will He? When will He? I don’t know the answers to those questions. I just know that what appears to be unwarranted hostility does not help. I just know God will judge each of us, and I would be a fool to attempt what only God can do properly. For all we know, God thinks Keith wrong in His non-Theism, but He accepts Keith rationale as well-intended. If God is not willing to make such judgments, I suspect we are all in trouble.

          Anyway, we must always be wary of anything that smacks of pride. Does believing in God make any of us superior to another human being? Since it is Jesus who died on that cross — none of us — I don’t see how. Believing in Jesus Christ, living in obedience to our Savior and Lord, only gives us cause to know we are blessed, that God loves us. No more. No less.

          There but for the grace of God, go I — from =>


      2. @Keith

        While I can understand why your skin might be a little too thin, you are not an Atheist.
        1. You call yourself a non-Theist. For entirely practical reasons, you don’t like the connotation of the word “Atheist.”
        2. An Atheist is “a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings.” You have said yourself you don’t know whether or not God exists.

        Since you generally avoid the topic, I don’t understand your religious philosophy in much detail. I just know that even though you do not believe the Bible you respect it. Therefore, I assume you are not silly enough to believe that the God (whether real or not) who inspired the Bible thinks you a fool. So shrug it off.


  2. I think both Augustine and Aquinas explain very well why there is evil and also the goodness of God. I actually brought up these points to object to JZ’s ‘challenge’, but, of course, he wrote them off as ‘juvenile’. I attempted to illustrate that to create a thesis on nothing but empiricism is ultimately flawed. As any who look at and interpret data, they cannot separate their personal bias from their judgment. A determination cannot be anything but a metaphysical understanding, this is a basic concept that is taught in academia when studying how to write history. Of course, understand, this is not to say there isn’t truth, and if one is familiar with Augustine, one knows where he says to find it.

    I’ve found in my experience that one who rejects anything but modernism, often cannot understand that even their own secular beliefs are rooted in the same metaphysical system that one believes in God. This principle must be rejected, because if the secular modernist allows themselves to discover that their’s and the theists beliefs are both fundamentally adherent to the same philosophical construct. It becomes truly dangerous to their entire mindset.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @phadde2

      Very interesting observations.

      At the time I thought it ridiculous, but now I use it to remind myself not to take myself too seriously.

      When I was about 17 – 18 years old, I decided that I was not a Christian. I was an agnostic. In one one respect, that was true, but my mother said I was still a Christian. She did not know how to explain it well, however. Why? It takes time to digest an idea and understand it well enough to put it into words, and I suppose that why I now write so much. To put something down on either paper or the Internet, I must think.

      So it is that by writing about it years latter I began to understand what me mother was trying to tell me. Even though I had disowned Christianity, I still thought like a Christian. I still upheld Christian values, still called what Christians call good good and evil evil. I still maintained the majority of the same assumptions. I still looked at Creation much like a Christian, as wonderful, orderly, and full of possibilities.

      Atheism, however, is a denial of god, not just a rejection of a Christian Bible and God that one never carefully studied. To see creation as evil, insidiously dangerous, and designed for wrath is to replace a Creator who loves us with one who seeks His vile amusements at our expense. When we consider that Atheism truly is a religion, faith that God does not exist because God would have to be evil, then we no reason to be surprised that the most abhorrent regimes in history were run by Atheists.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve read two great ideas by Flannery O’Connor that address the issue:

        When commenting how those who follow the path of atheism are ultimate adherent to the philosophy of nihilism, but not the nihilism presented by Nietzsche; instead, ‘debonair nihilism’: the nihilism that enjoys itself on the way to oblivion, convinced that all of this–the world, us, relationships, sex, beauty, history– is really nothing but cosmic joke.”

        Only understanding this philosophy, those who subscribe to such a philosphy fail to understand horror–or in this case ‘malevolence’ correctly– What they view as horror “isn’t wickedness. The horror of the modern world is that, if nothing is really of ultimate consequence, then wickedness (malevolence) isn’t really wicked, the good isn’t good, and we’re back, once again, to all those pathetic ‘wingless’ chickens.”

        Although, that is the world view of some who wish to say there is no such thing is good, and they certainly know without good there would be no malevolence.

        However, when being met with refutation of this worldview, the wingless chicken has no use for integrity.

        They resist such a world!

        The State of Nature is the only concept of the world of said belief system, which leads me to believe that ultimately man who creates a god in his image and that god is malevolent, doesn’t that speak more of the character of the man?

        I would still caution mercy and forgiveness when interacting with such people, as mercy is a foreign concept and most likely to generate the spring of living water in their hearts.


        1. @phadde2

          Interesting analysis. I don’t see much cause for disagreement.

          I recall reading that when C. S. Lewis wrote “The Screwtape Letters,” he said he had found the experience quite unpleasant. I suppose that is why he wrote little such literature.
          When someone enjoys being malevolent, revels in the notion of evil, they are beyond our reach. We can only pray for them. It is then that caution is warranted. That is certainly the message of Matthew 7:6.

          Yet Matthew 7:6 hardly seems to apply to the bulk of mankind. Even so, when most first hear of the Gospel, they will reject it, at least for awhile. All we can do then is live a good Christian life and make the Word of God available for those with ears to hear.

          When someone is born again in Jesus Christ, that experience is of God. We may bring that person word of Jesus — we may set the example of His love that gets their attention — but Holy Spirit gives them birth in a new life, not any of us.


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