Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Religion Bad. Atheism Good.

The following is my unpublished letter of my response to Stephen Marche's weekend opinion piece in the National Post, one of Canada's national papers:

Stephen Marche writes of "religion's inherent toxicity," but is it right to lump all "religion" together under one category? If one religion teaches: "love your enemies and pray for those persecute you" (Mt. 5:44) and another teaches "When the sacred forbidden months for fighting are past, fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, beleaguer them, and lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war" (Qur'an 9:5), are they the same? Would those helped in India by William Carey and Mother Teresa and those helped in Africa by World Vision consider all religion toxic? In fact, atheist and secular regimes in the twentieth century alone have killed well over 100 million people, more than one hundred times the total deaths caused by Christians from the Crusades until the present (See R.J. Rummel, Statistics of Democide, U of Virgina Press, 1997).

Second, the author says that "Christians have faith. Athiests and humanists have reason." However, the apostle Paul himself considered faith as trust in what is true (cf. his belief in the historicity of the resurrection, 1 Cor. 15:3-8). Faith is not belief in what some one knows not to be true, but trust in what is reasonable true.

Nick Hill
Toronto, ON

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