If you’re unfamiliar with Dr. Sarah Salviander, I encourage you to make her acquaintance. She’s a Christian apologist, takes the Genesis creation account literally (although she’s not a young earth creationist, she believes that God created the cosmos in six days), has a Ph.D. in astrophysics, and is an ex-atheist. Because of her background and credentials, Salviander has insight into atheism that many do not. Earlier this month, utilizing that insight, Salviander tweeted a sharply worded reminder that atheism suffers from intellectual dishonesty.
In the tweet, Sarah Salviander provides steps to crafting your own atheistic philosophy. Her steps are: “1. Start with the assumption of no God 2. However, also start with Christian morality 3. Remove the bits you personally don’t like 4. Proclaim that it’s self-evident 5. Ignore the meaninglessness of a Godless universe.”
How to Design Your Own Atheistic Personal Philosophy
1. Start with the assumption of no God
2. However, also start with Christian morality
3. Remove the bits you personally don’t like
4. Proclaim that it's self-evident
5. Ignore the meaninglessness of a Godless universe
— Sarah Salviander (@sarahsalviander) January 5, 2019
In a follow-up tweet, and in case you’re curious, Salviander explains that since she receives the same criticism and arguments from atheists over and over, she’s pinned a tweet to the top of her page linking to an article answering commonly asked questions and arguments from atheists. However, the above tweet is apologetics gold.
Step number one pokes at the wholly unsubstantiated claim that there is no God. Contrary to popular belief, Christians do not blindly believe in God. We look at the evidence and conclude that the data supports our belief in God. Atheists, on the other hand, blindly believe that there is no God. This is demonstrated by Salviander’s next three steps.
Dipping into the evidence for the existence of a God, atheists pick and choose which parts of Christian morality they like and discard whatever they don’t like. Paraphrasing a statement Douglas Wilson made to Christopher Hitchens, atheists hijack the Christian’s car (morality) and then unwittingly crash it into a tree. The reality is that if the universe is impersonal, then morality is socially constructed with no basis in objectivity. Without a transcendent Being that has authority, no one can rightfully claim that it’s wrong to do anything. Without the existence of a God, I am free to do whatever I want.
Sure, people can band together and form a society that restricts actions that they agree impede their collective goals. But, if another group takes power and decides to pursue goals that allow for previously restricted actions to be unrestricted, there is no outside authority to which those who disagree can appeal to. Might makes right.
Of course, this is why Salviander’s step number five is needed in order to construct an atheistic philosophy. The only way to insist that it’s morally wrong to take your neighbor’s farm by force is to ignore that atheism requires an utterly meaningless universe.
Many atheists like to pretend that their position is the intellectual position. It’s not. It’s a wholly unsubstantiated claim that has to steal ethics from the Christian worldview in order to keep from promoting a society ruled by utter chaos. Sarah Salviander’s tweet almost perfectly sums up the intellectual dishonesty inherent in atheism.