f The Wittenberg Door: Skepticism, Agnosticism, and Atheism: A Brief History of Unbelief

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Commenting on Christendom, culture, history, and other oddities of life from an historic Protestant perspective.

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Skepticism, Agnosticism, and Atheism: A Brief History of Unbelief

The Modern Reformation Web site offers a fascinating history of Atheism. Here’s how the article begins . . .

The last two years have been good for atheism. A rash of books making the case for unbelief, including Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion (2006) and Christopher Hitchens' God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything (2007), have sold millions of copies. Strident atheist Philip Pullman's The Golden Compass, one of his atheistic tomes designed to rescue children from belief in God, was made into a movie. Even pop star Elton John got into the act, calling for a ban on religion. Leaders of the so-called New Atheism are aggressive and proselytizing. They don't just condemn belief in God; they also condemn respect for belief in God.

But how new is the New Atheism? It is said best in Ecclesiastes 1:9: "There is nothing new under the sun." To be sure, explicit and public atheism is a somewhat new phenomenon. But atheism, agnosticism, and good old-fashioned doubt have strong and lengthy histories worth learning. Because atheism is parasitic on theism and even more on Christianity, to learn the history of atheism is to learn the history of the church.

You can read the entire article here.

--The Catechizer

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