Help for Today — Hope for Tomorrow
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[Darris McNeely] Your Bible predicts a coming time of religious deception. A charismatic political leader will combine forces with a powerful religious leader to bring about this new world system. These influential leaders will even turn many atheists into believers. Atheism is coming to an end.
But today people aren’t getting more religious. They are becoming more secular, more agnostic, more atheistic. And, too often, those who claim a religion don’t act all that religious.
What can you do to avoid such a great deception? How will you handle such a time?
Join us on Beyond Today as we discuss “The End of Atheism.”
[Announcer] Join our host Darris McNeely and his guests, as they help you understand your future on Beyond Today !
[Darris] There’s an old saying that in wartime, there are “no atheists in foxholes.” The idea is that in the heat of a battle when men are under attack from incoming shells and hunkered into the ground for protection—that they become believers in God and they call out to Him for protection and for help. They turn from disbelief to belief.
Well, the truth is there are still a lot of atheists in foxholes during the heat of battle. And when the fog of war lifts, people tend to fall back into the old patterns of belief, including unbelief in God or a Higher Power that governs this universe.
This was dramatically confirmed in America after 9/11 and the attacks on America by Islamic fundamentalists. For a few weeks following the attacks, church attendance skyrocketed. People wanted reassurance and answers, so they turned to religion. But this surge in religious attendance soon stopped. Fear waned and church attendance figures went back to normal. People crawled out of their foxholes and went back to former habits.
Atheism and unbelief in God has been around since the first humans. Today, atheism is popularized in media and popular culture. But atheism as a belief is heading toward the dustbin of history. The Bible shows a future time when a breakdown of world order will threaten civilization. To prevent a collapse, two powerful figures—one political and one religious—will step onto the stage. They will both wield power appearing to bring balance to the world. Religion will play a key role in this revival and atheism will not be fashionable anymore. But even in this supreme moment of human history, people will falter and they’ll stumble in belief toward God. What does this mean for you?
When I read about those who don’t believe there’s a God—it’s often because of the existence of evil in the world and especially the evil or the tragedy of a personal nature. When children are sick. When good people suffer. When God is not seen to answer a prayer in the exact manner and way that one might wish. As a pastor dealing with people’s expectations of God, I know this happens. The key to maintaining our faith is to understand why evil exists and why God allows bad things to happen. Atheism is too often a convenient crutch that we might use as we struggle to understand this often bleak world.
When we read the apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans, we see how atheism becomes imbedded among men.
Paul wrote to that first century group of people, he said that: “…God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness. They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them…So they have no excuse for not knowing God” (Romans 1:18-19, NLT).
Pause here for a moment and consider. There is no reason or excuse for any of us to not know the truth about God including His certain existence. God challenges man in His Word saying that He can be found by those who seek Him. God is not a vacant landlord with no interest in this world and human life. He is interested in you! And should you choose to seek Him, He can be found.
Let’s read on in what Paul says.
“Yes,” he said, “they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused” (Romans 1:21-24, NLT).
Now Paul was writing to a first century Roman world that was spiritually dark and in confusion. Twenty-first century American and western culture mirrors that same first century Roman world. We are on a headlong dash back to the days of Rome. Atheism today is a symptom of a world fumbling for meaning and purpose. Sin and the consequences of sin bring suffering. And suffering results in further denial and hatred of God.
God has always allowed man the choice of obedience or disobedience. Belief or unbelief. When disobedience is chosen a vicious downward cycle begins. God is forgotten and a culture develops that does not acknowledge truth. Lies about God, His existence, His nature and His purpose is forgotten.
You see, man will ultimately believe in something, even if it’s a lie. Humanity’s hard wired to seek meaning and purpose for his existence. And even atheism is a faith, a belief that there is no god requires looking at the intricate reality of life in this planet and devising a belief system that denies what is self-evident.
Paul says in this passage that God can be seen and known by His creation. To reject that truth forms a new faith system. God allows mankind the freedom to choose His way, even if it takes him away from Him as creator.
Paul’s response to this situation was the gospel of God through His Son Jesus Christ and the hope of the coming Kingdom. He showed this promise was long foretold by the prophets. God would send His Son to this earth to live a righteous life (Romans 8:11). He said this same “power of God” would work salvation to everyone who believes—including the Gentile world (Romans 1:16). The gospel was a message of faith and life.
To the first century Roman world, this message found an audience in people who looked for hope at a very bleak time. You see, the world that was created by the yoke of Rome produced a very hard peace but little hope for men. Cynicism and hatred was a bitter fruit of the time.
Atheism today bears this trademark of hatred—a hatred for God and a hatred for religion. And we’re reaping the results of a modern world of false and failed religion. Because religion is seen as an oppressor, atheism is seen by many as a liberator.
To read what modern atheists say about religion, particularly the Christian religion, is to understand this hatred. The late Christopher Hitchens put it best in his book, “god is not Great.” Hitchens had a caustic, scathing atheism which he described as a “particular…Protestant atheism.” He railed at all varieties of religious ideas.
He said, “I leave it to the faithful to burn each other’s churches and mosques and synagogues,”…“which they can always be relied upon to do.” He somewhat prophetically even said, “people of faith are in their different ways planning your and my destruction, and the destruction of all the hard won human attainments.” Hitchens was correct in assessing religion would always be with us as human beings.
Hard core atheism blames religion for mankind’s problems. No better illustration of this can be found than in the spirit exhibited by the French magazine, Charlie Hebdo . In January 2015, terrorists attacked the Paris office of this satirical anti-religious magazine, killing 16 people. A year later, on the first anniversary of the massacre the cover story depicted God with a Kalashnikov rifle slung over his back, cloak and beard splattered with blood, under the headline, “The killer is still on the run.”
Bringing atheism to an end will take something bigger than what we have so far seen.
The Bible shows us how an end time false religion, inspired by the Devil himself, will finally end atheism. Yes, a false religion is coming that will be so deceiving that it will convert atheists into believers in a god. We will see in a moment how this will come upon an unsuspecting world.
But first, let me tell you about today’s free Bible study aid offer—which has everything to do with the coming false, demon-inspired faith that will terminate atheism. It’s titled: Who is the Antichrist? This publication will help you fully grasp the truth about this serious and absorbing end-time subject. To order your own personal copy of Who is the Antichrist? call us toll free at: 1-888-886-8632. Again that number is: 1-888-886-8632, or you can go online to BeyondToday.tv .