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Thread: The conversion of an atheist by his own efforts!

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    The conversion of an atheist by his own efforts!

    I get panned when I speak of science as being a way to find God, even though some 500 years ago, Thomas Acquinas said that one excellent way to find proofs of God was to study His creations. Well, we know a TREMENDOUS lot more than we did 500 years ago, or even 100 or 50 years ago now, and Acquinas's words ring even more true. It's about an hour long, but here's a link to a video on youtube about a fellow who was a confirmed atheist, but who was willing to investigate the matter further. He was, very simply, willing to question his own doubts. And what he found awed and amazed him to such an extent, that he could no longer hold to his former atheistic bent. It was his wife's conversion to Christianity that spurred him to re-evaluate his belief, and the things he saw in her and her behavior, attitude and demeanor after she converted. They'd both been previously atheists/agnostics/doubters, but when she converted, her example was so strong that he simply became willing to search out what might be the source of her new vitality, joy and attitude.

    If you'll watch this (I DVD'd it off my TV) as I did, I think it'll do a FAR better job than I ever could of explaining the very real significance that science is now playing in the realm of theology, philosophy and all related pursuits. And the more anti-science you are, the more surprised you'll likely be at just how definitive these modern "proofs" of our Faith really are! Here's the link, and if you can't watch it all at one sitting, be sure to mark down where you left, and come back to that point later. It's essentially divided into 3 sections with an intro at the beginning and a conclusion at the end. And really, this only gives you the tip of the iceberg about what science is and has been doing for the past 50 or so years, and my friends, it's truly amazing! Here's the link:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajqH4y8G0MI

    Hope you enjoy it, and maybe find some real edification in it. Funny, isn't it, how science is NOW almost fully on the side of Christianity and Christianity's God, and yet, we hear practically nothing about it? And yet, any time there's something that is published denying God's existence, it's all over the media? I wonder why that is, don't you????

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    Boolit Master claude's Avatar
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    And yet, any time there's something that is published denying God's existence, it's all over the media? I wonder why that is, don't you????
    No, I don't wonder, The Prince of the Power of the Air, Eph 2:2 is in control of the four hidden dynasties from which his power is partially derived, namely the four seats of power that control this world, 1. Education 2. Economics 3. Government, and 4. Religion. He who controls those four controls the world. Daniel chapter 7:1-8 is a good read, it gives a starting point to understanding the four, and he who controls them.

    (Ephesians 2:2) "Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:"

    Blackwater, while I have not watched the presentation at the link, my comment is pointed at the quote in the OP, I hope I haven't confused the subject of your offering to the members here.

    claude

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    Boolit Master
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    CS Lewis is another.
    "My main ambition in life is to be on the devil's most wanted list."
    Leonard Ravenhill

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    Thanks for the comments. I know science and religion have been thought to be at odds with each other for most of my lifetime, but long ago, 500 years or more ago, Thomas Acquinas wrote that he thought the whole world was replete with evidences of God, if we just look at them the way they really are, and not as we'd like to think of them as being. And who among us who goes "out there" into the sporting world, on the water or in the woods, and does NOT find inspiration in all the things we see there?

    There've always been those who sought to deny and "explain away" Christianity. Not many have sought to eliminate Budhism, or most other forms of religion. Why does Christianity draw so much ire from its very existence? Why do folks insist these days, in many cases, on shunning science, when it has so many, many, many things to support and "prove" our Faith??? It frankly amazes me. It's said that "A little learning CAN be dangerous," and that's undoubtedly true in many ways. Since much of the things science has discovered in the last 50 years or so have NOT been publicized, it's up to US to seek them out. And today, there's a very rapidly growing among most scientists who are simply honest, and are not studying with an intent to find what they want to find, to gravitate strongly and attach themselves to the Christian faith. No other religion has ever explained the universe and all that's in it so completely, in proper order, and given us real insight into why the universe is the way it is. I found great messages in Hugh Ross and Reasons to Believe (www.rtb.org), but others have contributed other authors who are doing and saying the same things.

    And one thing I've noted about atheists is, they're inordinately proud of their "reasoning." IF one can defeat their faulty reasoning, and do it without condemnation, they really have nothing TO do but stand naked in the light of real reason! And many really CAN be drawn to Christianity, IF we simply do our part, and do it with the right spirit - one that draws them in instead of repelling them away.

    Christ never intended for anyone to be lost, but I'm afraid that in our efforts to "protect ourselves" and our beliefs, we sometimes, unfortunately, run off the very people we need most to understand and believe. After all, the more who disbelieve, the more there will be of people who'll "follow the crowd," which I believe is at least a major reason for the "popularity" of atheism/agnosticism today. We're effectively cutting our own throats by NOT going after the very folks who need (and maybe internally thirst the most) The Word most. But to convert them, we need to dump the haughty, judgmental approach. It's dysfunctional anyway, since what THEY decide to do with their soul doesn't affect us in the least, except as it directs their actions and attitudes as they bustle all around us and our own families.

    The more folks we CAN bring to accept the Lord, the better our nation will be, and the safer and more happy our families will be. I really think we need to re-examine and maybe refine our concepts of the non-believers, and adjust our dealings with them accordingly. THEY are the key to our future! If we sit idly by, and allow them to flourish, and don't even make a real effort to counter their constant barage of assaults on our faith, who will? Answer: "NOBODY!!!" It's up to us believers to do as Christ instructed us to do, and wherever and whenever we can, to speak to the unbelievers, and let them SEE IN US what Christ can really do to and for a person, and how much it really, truly matters. If all we can do is stand and quote scripture, and tell them they're "****ed," then what have we given them to walk TOWARDS??? Answer: Nothing. We need to give them REASONS TO BELIEVE, and one place to start, is with their "scientific concepts" that are so egregiously wrong now, and have been for over 50 years! Once their theories can be proven to be wrong and mere acts of will, THEN, we stand at least some chance of bringing them to Christ.

    Atheists and agnostics have always been supported by empty thoughts and ideas, and now, it can be pretty conclusively proven that their ideas and concepts are wrong. This takes away from them their traditional claims to being "more rational" than believers, when in truth, it's the exact OPPOSITE that's really true!

    And heaven knows, there's an abundance of atheists/agnostics/just don't care folks out there!!! If we can't or don't or won't convert them, and get them to see the clear error of their ways and thoughts, the world will continue to progress exactly how it's progressing already! And soon, the world will have to end, because we're marching ever more certainly and swiftly toward oblivion and Armageddon. We have yet, an opportunity to do what Christ actually directed us to do, and while that time yet exists, we'd better make very good use of it if we want our children and grandchildren to know half the wonders and pleasures that we have in the world WE inherited from our forefathers! We now owe it, I think, to those who went before us, to ensure as best as we can, the continuation of this nation and its laws, however flawed we may have been at any given moment in time at applying them judiciously. If we can't or won't or don't take care of this, and attend to Christ's WHOLE direction and intent for us, our nation will falter and fail, and it's just that simple and concrete. Our future is up to us, and we've become awfully lazy, I'm afraid, collectively speaking at least.

    Knowing what all science has discovered so we CAN use it may well be crucial if we're to effectively deal with and convert many who think they have science "on their side," when it really is very clearly NOT on their side. It's our neglect, along with the mindset of the media, that MIGHT spread these ideas/truths/thoughts, but won't, that prevents many, many, many souls stay lost in disbelief. And many of them CAN be converted, contrary to the traditional view of many! We don't know nearly as much about who can and can't be saved as we like to think! I know, for it's often, in my experience, the last one you'd expect to respond to the Word, who DOES respond, and often, the one you think would be "a natural" for conversion, is the last person who'll respond!

    So my point it simple and concrete: We cannot, and will never, KNOW who can and will be saved, and who won't. Consider the example of Saul/Paul! And that's just one. Remember the Roman Legionaires? So many examples! And remember the rich man who came to Christ himself, and who was told he'd have to give all he owned to the poor and come and follow Christ? He just walked away, and in doing so, we must assume he was lost.

    Dealing with the unbelievers really isn't all that hard, either! All you have to do is know some stuff, and be able to counter their arguments. And yes, a few will hate you for it, and will resort to PC philosophy which says it's "wrong" to directly disagree with others, but do you want to go with Christ's instruction, or with PC theology???? I think the choice is clear again there.

    We were essentially given one primary instruction, and that was to bring others to Christ, and NOBODY is excluded from that. Even ugly, stinky people are included in that, whether they be that way physically or spiritually. And don't be surprised when the last person you'd expect to respond, comes to Christ, while the ones you think "ought to" do not respond well. If you can just learn to defeat a self-proclaimed atheist/agnostic's "rational" illusions, you're really half way there. And most of us here have enough understanding to learn at least the basics of even Quantum theory today, and what it's revealing. And it's also absolutely fascinating, so it's really enjoyable time spent in learning about it. Challenging at times, yes, but who among us doesn't like a challenge, and find satisfaction in meeting them?

    So if you haven't, go listen to the link. It may well help you to bring someone to Christ, and maybe even some of your own family! Who among us can resist an opportunity like that?

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

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    Josh McDowell and Lee Strobel.

    Stobel was a hardcore athiest. McDowell an agnostic.

    Shiloh
    Je suis Charlie

    "A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves."
    Bertrand de Jouvenel

    “Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one.” – Joseph P. Martino

    “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years there would be a shortage of sand.” – Milton Friedman

    "Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns; why should we let them have ideas?" - J. Stalin

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    Yep. And did you notice the smile on Stobel's face as he related the process of his conversion to belief? That smile almost wouldn't fit on his face! In wartime, it's said that nobody appreciates a bullet that misses so much as those who have a very close near-miss. It's likely the same as those who come to realize how close they were to being lost, permanently and irreversibly! How could it be any diffferent??? And there are many, many more stories out there like Stobel's, but most don't WANT to know about them, because they don't know what to do with info like Ross, Stobel and many others now offer us. But then, we didn't really know what to do with our newfound Christianity upon our conversion either, did we? And we learned how to conduct ourselves so as to enrich our Christian lives, didn't we? We can, if we but simply will, do the same with science, and it can truly convert folks that no amount of verse-reading can ever convert. And there really ARE many out there who, if you can demonstrate good, reliable, proven facts to them, CAN be led to Christ via science. Stobel is FAR From the only one to be led to Christ by his intellect. It doesn't matter if we're lead to Christ via the emotions, the intellect, or some as yet mysterious and innate sense we have that we can't yet explain or describe. Being led to Christ is being led to Christ, and there are a whole myriad of paths to him, though all eventually lead to that narrow path of belief and redemption.

    We Christians sometimes need to look for new and differing ways to bring folks to Christ, rather than saying only one will do for all sutuations and purposes. One gun won't do it all. How can one technique do the most vital thing mankind is able to do?

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    Boolit Master

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    Lee Strobel's wife Leslie is an inspirational person. She never gave up on Lee and by patience and being a Godly example, She was influential in converting Lee.

    Shiloh
    Je suis Charlie

    "A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves."
    Bertrand de Jouvenel

    “Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one.” – Joseph P. Martino

    “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years there would be a shortage of sand.” – Milton Friedman

    "Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns; why should we let them have ideas?" - J. Stalin

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    Yep. There are many stories in the Bible where women led their men to belief. Women may be the "weaker sex," but NOT when it comes to making up their minds! And when they KNOW something, nothing on earth can make them deny it! On the other hand, nobody can be more wicked than a scheming woman, either! God bless all good women, who have the patience and simple faith to bring their husbands to Christ! They are truly a "pearl of great price!" But men have to be willing to accept the simple Truth, too, so even the most faithful and persuasive woman cannot "save" their husbands if the husbands resolutely deny Him. Women like these have a heavy burden to carry, loving a man who refuses to take Christ's hand when it's so freely offered! God bless them, too, particularly!

    Women have great persuasive power, I think, simply because their love is valued. They can reach "places" in a man's heart that nothing else seems to be able to penetrate. And God will use whatever "tools" are at hand, to achieve His will. I am always awed at how He routinely and casually uses whatever "tools" are at hand, and whoever they are and whatever talents they may have or lack. If that's not a "miracle," what could be? Yet more proof of the "supernatural!"

  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    My wife has an influence on me. I'm a baptised believer, have been a long time. Baptized my wife. I'm not as polished as I should be. Nor am I as patient or forgiving. I have mellowed with age, but there is room for improvement.

    Shiloh
    Je suis Charlie

    "A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves."
    Bertrand de Jouvenel

    “Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one.” – Joseph P. Martino

    “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years there would be a shortage of sand.” – Milton Friedman

    "Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns; why should we let them have ideas?" - J. Stalin

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackwater View Post
    Yep. There are many stories in the Bible where women led their men to belief.
    I cannot think of a single example of this other than mothers' influences on their children and perhaps the testimony of the Samaritan woman at the well. Maybe it's just too early for me. Can you list examples you have in mind?

    There are however many biblical stories of women leading men the other way--towards unbelief and disobedience. This is why Israel was not to take foreign wives and Christians are told to only marry other believers.

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    Yes, you're right in part. But as you note, the mothers are where most of us get our real faith from. Generally speaking (and yes, this is at least partially "psychobabble") we get our ideas about God from our Dads, and our ideas about love and forgiveness and that sort of stuff from our Moms. So I'll stand by my statement, with your noted and valid qualification, at least. Thanks for clearing up a point that could have been misconstrued or misapplied.

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    And Shiloh, we're all in that same boat with you on the "room for improvement" thing! Thanks for keeping us humble!

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    Boolit Master popper's Avatar
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    Visit 'Changed Lives', pastor in Chattanooga. Read about him.
    Whatever!

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    Boolit Master
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    Quote

    And one thing I've noted about atheists is, they're inordinately proud of their "reasoning."

    One thing I have noticed about believers is their lack of a rational thought process.
    Few have any real education in science so what they perceive as science is more dogma tainted circular reasoning in which they quote their own religion to prove the logic of their religion. They have no means of outside independent corroboration.
    The main difference between a protestant and a muslim suicide bomber is where their parents were born. Both are willing to believe outlandish religious tales. Most merely swallow the dogma they were raised with.
    EDG

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    Boolit Master
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    I am an Mechanical Engineer and love science, astronomy etc. I am very rational in my thinking and analyze everything, almost to a fault. I see God's hand in everything. The more I learn about science, the more my rational thought process sees He had to create it. No rational thinking person could possibly believe that it all happened by chance in my mind when you see all of the scientific data and evidence.

    Rosewood
    Evangelical, deplorable redneck and proud of it.

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    Boolit Master
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    (Few have any real education in science so what they perceive as science is more dogma tainted circular reasoning in which they quote their own religion to prove the logic of their religion.)
    This is a fallacy based in one's own personal belief system. I myself am a believer, a scientist, and a logical thinker. I'm not required to prove any thing, or have the answers to an unbelievers questions to suit their definition of logic. Having worked in the medical field my whole adult life I would defy anyone to logically explain a multitude of things I have personally been whiteness to. What I call God, you may choose to call luck, with no more logic applied.
    (The main difference between a protestant and a muslim suicide bomber is where their parents were born. Both are willing to believe outlandish religious tales. Most merely swallow the dogma they were raised with.)
    This is another fallacy based on one's lack of understanding in the vast difference in the "tales" that's believed, or the teller of the tail! Many of the worst Muslim terrorist have come from modern societies and highly educated families. It's the teaching that's different, not where you are born!

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    I own all of Lee's books, what a great man.

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    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by rosewood View Post
    I am an Mechanical Engineer and love science, astronomy etc. I am very rational in my thinking and analyze everything, almost to a fault. I see God's hand in everything. The more I learn about science, the more my rational thought process sees He had to create it. No rational thinking person could possibly believe that it all happened by chance in my mind when you see all of the scientific data and evidence.

    Rosewood
    I am also a Mech Eng. Became a believer in June last year..so less than a year after being an atheist for over 50 years. I cannot yet buy into the Bible being 100% true and factual but I continue to study and learn. I believe there is a God, but He is not perfect. I believe Jesus was and is. I struggle with the Holy Spirit and hope to understand why He is an entity if we have God and Jesus.

    If someone believes they can prove God exists, they are fools or delusional. It is just as easy to argue the counterpoint...actually easier! The only way to God is by faith. And for me, that faith came from accepting that Jesus was the son of God and His gift to us. It makes little "sense", but it worked that way for me. In the end, it does not matter how you personally accept Jesus and find God.

    It is easy to see the many broken people that attend church and feel sorry for them, and that they need God and Jesus in their lives to carry on. Atheists see themselves as superior and self sufficient. Not needing a higher power to deal with suffering...only because they have not suffered enough yet.
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

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    That last observation is a really salient one, Don. Very true. It's said there are NO atheists in a foxhole in a running battle. Anyone who could remain atheist in that situation simply has hardened their heart, and stiffened their necks, SO much that nothing could get through to them. They're so cynical and nihlistic, and so full of and dedicated to denial, that they cannot or WILL not even consider belief, and that condemns them to perpetual estrangement from God. I feel sorry for them. I really do. Many just condemn them and put them down, but that's not the way Christ taught us to regard ANY of our fellow creatures! We so often do what we want, and cite some verse to justify it, rather than simply doing what Christ so clearly instructed us to do. And in behaving so, we condemn ourselves to living in a world with many, many more deniers, and that in turn condems us to living in a world where true rationality and belief is getting rarer and rarer.

    Folks respond to being told to "do whatever you want" MUCH more readily than being told to act on principle and morality toward our fellow creatures. It's harder to commit to belief when the world around us seems to be "having such a great time," doing what they want rather than what's functional in the long run to our communities and the nation. Take sex for one example. Indiscriminate sex destroys families, and families are the cornerstone and foundation of ALL successful societies! "The wages of sin is death." How true THAT is! It never fails!

    And where else can we find such lovingly beneficial instruction as we do in the Bible???? Other religions offer some narrow thoughts of "wisdom," but none really offer the kind of pervasive and promising message of Truth that the Bible offers. That alone should be considered a good evidence of the reality of God, Christ and the Holy Spiriit. And as to not quite understanding the Trinity, it's really so easy to understand that it befuddles many, many folks. But if God is real, why would He NOT have a Son? And if that Son chose to come down to this plane of existence, and die on a cross for our sins, to save us from our selves and our natural tendencies, and show us a better way to live and love, why would He not leave behind a bit of himself amongst us? That's what we call the "Holy Spirit." It's really as simple as that, but many other explanations are available as well. Mostly, most folks are so busy and so wrapped up in just "getting along" that we never seem to find these explanations. But that's one of the reasons you're to be so richly commended for discovering for yourself the reality of God and Christ and the whole ball of wax, even if you don't quite "get" the whole of it quite yet. Keep searching, and you'll find the answers. After all, have we not been promised "Seek and ye shall find?"

    Most atheists and deniers simply don't WANT to find Christ so ..... they simply don't, and a large part of the reason they don't is because they won't make any real effort to discover Him. It's so elementary and simple it's amazing how few really realize this. With us humans, it's often the really simple things that confound us the most! The world is full of contradictions, in spite of our desire to see it as orderly and complex and rational. We, as a species, have NEVER been truly rational! I'm not entirely sure we even have the POTENTIAL to be truly "rational," in the strictest sense.

    We've recognized our collective and individual trait of "intuition," or un-learned knowledge, but since it puzzles us, we just don't think of it oftentimes. But it's there, and it HAS to come from somewhere. I think it's simply a result of that spark of life that God "breathed" into us at our creation, however He did that. Why do bird dogs point, and young birds jump out of the nice, comfortable nest and fly? Something makes that happen, and it's most surely NOT learned. It's really more of an inspiration, that comes from somewhere inside us. And only the existence of a very real and loving God can really explain it satisfactorily.

    But many are "satisfied" with less than really rational explanations. That's an act of will that atheists seem to parade as their "superiority" and "greater rationality." Ain't it funny how that works? But then, mankind may call itself "rational," but I suspect that we all know the real truth of our LACK of rationality on so many, many occasions. We seem to keep our rational capabilities in a holster, and only draw it when we really, really need it. Otherwise, our wills tend strongly to dominate our considerations and thoughts.

    As Shakespeare said, "What a work is man!"

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