A LOT OF ATHEISTS have been commenting on my video What Romans said about crucifixion.
By “a lot,” I mean more than I can respond to. The view count is now over 446,000.
People outside the faith have not been complimentary about the video, me, or Christians in general.
It’s hard talking with them. Imagine what goes on in Congress, for example. That’s what it’s like. Bullheaded intransigence. Us against Them.
Frankly, the way some atheists lump all Christians together and declare us evil seems awfully close to racism.
What’s a word for the religion version of that kind of prejudice and hatred? I’m not aware of one. The closest I can come to it is a pair of words: “religious intolerance.”
Also, I’ve come to think of people who show that level of intensity as “atheist evangelists.” They’re trying to convert Christians, by logical arguments or nasty name-calling.
Snippets of conversations with atheists
Jerry & Steve
Jerry: I’m so glad I was sitting down when I heard this video, otherwise I would have keeled over from shock listening to the unadulterated lies this guy was saying. There are NO contemporary accounts, Roman or otherwise, of the crucifixion. What a monumental LIE Christianity is… and what do you defend a lie with? More lies.
Steve: Gee, I quoted the Roman accounts and reported the dates the writers lived. If you’re looking for reports of Jesus from the 1-3 years of his ministry, that would show up in a newspaper, not a history book. Histories, like that of Josephus, were written after the events occurred. That’s why they’re called history.
Richard and Steve
Richard: Jesus was a myth and was not documented except by false addition to the history. There is no god and that ends this fairy tale.
Steve: Hey, Richard. Certainly, Josephus got some things wrong and he puffed himself up a bit. But the bulk of what he wrote is considered authentic. That includes what he said about John the Baptist, James the brother of Jesus, and one of the three variations about Jesus (the one that he simply reports, without sounding like he’s a believer). There is one variation that sure sounds like a Christian editor got to it. But I never refer to that one in my books or videos.
Richard: Too bad you will never know what you worship is just wishful thinking.
Steve: Well, if I’m wrong, I’ll be dead wrong. Peace to you, Richard.
Richard: Dead for sure, but wrong will be your option.
Steve: Life is my option. And I choose it.
Shayne & Steve
Shayne: In actual real Roman history….there are no records [about Jesus]…but of course you need to understand the difference between real history and religious fiction.
Steve: Well, most Roman historians would disagree with you. I quoted sources that most historians have judged as authentic. Granted, we don’t have the originals of any of them. But we don’t have the originals of just about anything when it comes to ancient history. But we are able to cross-check some of the writing with surviving documents uncovered in archaeology and on ancient buildings. From that sort of thing, historians are able to make judgments about the authenticity of the content. Most historians agree that Josephus (not some later Christian) wrote into his books the names of Jesus, John the Baptist, and James the brother of Jesus.
Shayne: Your arguments have been debunked time and time again by biblical scholars themselves…Do some honest research…you are just twisting it to suit your needs.
Steve: Shayne, what you are saying about the sources is inaccurate. What academic studies and biblical scholars are you talking about? Certainly some scholars would lobby against Jesus. But that’s not the prevailing view.
Shayne: You sir, are just being dishonest. That’s it…you are presenting evidence that shows your stand to be wrong and then twisting it. But, it’s not your fault…it’s a practice that your religion teaches as ok and acceptable…but lies are lies.
Steve: I’m so sorry. You are terribly misinformed in your understanding of the history here. And you have presumed to know my intentions, but have misjudged me. I’ll move on now. I wish you well.
Shayne: It is not presumed. You have just presented the information in error. But I agree…the conversation, as usual…leads nowhere. Good day.
Walt and CM with Steve
Walt: …..science flies you to the Moon……religion flies you into buildings………
Steve: Churches build hospitals throughout the country, dig wells in Africa, treat the sick, the injured, and the refugees.
CM: Stephen M. Miller, name a single good act which a Christian/believer can commit which a secular person cannot. There are none. Now name an evil act which a Christian/believer has and is inspired to commit according to Christian doctrine/ the bible. You’ll have a long list. Good things can be done in the name of religion or in the name of humanity. Your beliefs cause more suffering and crimes against humanity than any secular group.
Steve: CM, you don’t know what my beliefs are. Let’s say I’m United Methodist. Why don’t you try to list all the people we’ve killed in the name of religion? Then work up a list of Methodist hospitals, orphanages, schools, and colleges. Then consider the possibility that lumping all Christians together and calling them evil is unkind and untrue.
CM: Haha…. “I don’t know what your beliefs are?” You’re outlining your beliefs by making blatant claims regarding the existence of a deity in the flesh. “United Methodist” is a doctrine based on the catholic canon dating back to the 1500s. I don’t need to make any lists of the good things Christians have done because I stated precisely that anyone can do good deeds, including Christians. Why don’t you re-read my comment and attempt to answer the dichotomy I posed in my previous question? I think your avoidance of my question speaks volumes, as does your inclination to become defensive and offended when I made no accusations nor called any group or individual any names at all.
Steve: Well, you can figure out what I believe after watching a five-minute video, mostly of me reading ancient quotes from Romans. My, what a gift you have. You know, CM, when a person demeans all people of one color, that’s called racism, which grows out of ignorance, intolerance, and mean-spiritedness. I’m sorry you feel the way you do about all Christians. It’s sad to see this kind of hatred, and rationalization for it. Accusing all Christians on the basis of evil that some have done in the name of Christ is like accusing all Americans of some evil that Americans have done in the name of capitalism or freedom or whatever they chose to justify themselves. It’s time for me to walk away. I’ll leave the last word to you. Peace to you.
Not all conversations about this video between Christians and atheists have been pushy. But I’ve found that mine have been.
For me, even if the social media comments start off straightforward, they get bent out of shape pretty doggone quickly.
I’ll try to dial it down a bit. And it time, I’ll have to jump out of the fray and let others take over. Lots of Christians are already engaged in the dialogue.
I’m glad my job is simply to present the facts to these folks, and not to convert them.
Holy Spirit, that’s your cue.
Steve, I sure don’t envy you — putting it out there and then having to deal with rude and uncivil responses from both traditional Christians and smarmy atheists. The worst I deal with is that occasionally someone points out that I have a funny accent.
I commend you on how you respond with dignity and class.
For the record, I was an Episcopalian (something my family chose) a Roman Catholic (something I chose), a Hellenistic Poly-Theist, (another personal choice) an “atheist” (an adamant choice); and now a Roman Catholic “Re-vert” (a choice made by The Holy Spirit, not me). I still haven’t figured out what your belief is Mr. Miller, other than what the Holy Spirit guides you to report on Christ. God Bless! 🙂
Stephen M. Miller
That’s cool that you can’t tell what I am. In my books I try to report objectively, without pushing my beliefs on others. So I try to give equal respect to the different sides of Christianity. I teach a Bible study group in a United Methodist church, where I’m a member.
I’m an atheist and I can assure you I have no intentions of converting anyone. I think your view of atheists might be a little skewed if you’re basing it on the comments section since YouTube commenters are self-selecting, bloviating know-it-alls.
Stephen M. Miller
That’s good to know. Some of the folks writing in those comment boxes are pretty unnerving. The personal threats I got, which I deleted, are frightening…and anger-spawning. So thanks for your note.