Disrespectful Friend

“It’s ultimately God himself who’s supposed to do the converting, and the prescribed way for mortal Christians to help is to keep Him in your face.”

Question from Rick:
I have a friend who is a christian. He is aware that I am an atheist, and do not believe in god/gods or anything like that. But when we talk he always seems to slip a bible reference in there. And I don’t mean scriptures. For example, we’ll be having a conversation about women (as most guys do) and he will always say something like, “well that’s how they are, its right there in the bible, you know what I mean?” And I always respond like “I hear you talking, but you know I don’t believe that.” And that starts a whole argument about who’s right or wrong. I like him as a person, but dislike him as a christian. Any thoughts on how to handle the situation?

It’s hard to go on the words alone. The way in which he says such things would tell us a great deal more. He might simply not consider your atheism before referring to the Bible as if you’re about to agree with him, implying that he’s inconsiderate or simply a bit self-absorbed. (Perhaps he doesn’t have many atheist friends.) Or, perhaps he has you pegged and he says things like that to draw you into a religious discussion, which apparently works like a charm.

I tend to suspect the latter, in the absence of context. Christians are told to spread the capital-W Word whenever possible, and very little emphasis is placed on making it stick. The idea is that the more a man simply thinks about God, even in terms of denial, the more likely he is to come around. It’s ultimately God himself who’s supposed to do the converting, and the prescribed way for mortal Christians to help is to keep Him in your face.

Back to your friend…if you don’t like to hear about the Bible, someone like this isn’t going to lay off if you don’t straight up ask him to. If you do ask, and he carries on, maybe you’ll know more about why. Or you could just ask why.

Keep us posted, Rick. Anyone else have friends like this?


2 thoughts on “Disrespectful Friend”

  1. My mom is like this.

    She will put on Christian music in the car when we go out together-Now, I like some Christian music but she will make sure to tell me that I should listen to the words/story as they have meaning for my life.

    Last week she says to me that as my parent she has the right to attack my ‘Gay lifestyle’ and I havent any right to talk back or defend myself to her-why not? Its in ‘The Book’

    Tonight she says that its better to believe in God than to be sorry when we die, I commented to her that the reasoning fails on 3 counts, 1. I cant force myself to believe in God when I have no belief-To which she replied-Faith to which I said-well I dont have faith. 2. IF There is a God, surely he would know that I was just faking it so that I could get into Heaven and I dont think he would like that too much! 3. To make sure that you are safe, one should believe in and practice the rites of ALL religions because The Muslim God, The Wiccan God and Goddess and The Shadak Creator might be the right one, no?

  2. Your approach to #3 wouldn’t work. The Abrahamic God isn’t the only one with a rule about not worshipping other gods. You can only back one horse when they’re all jealous and they can all supposedly see what you’re doing.

    Otherwise, good reasoning – even if I do say so myself and if my piece on Pascal’s Wager is fairly similar.

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