The great Hitchens debate: my reactions

Andy Rau

April 9, 2008

Unfortunately I missed the debates, but I’ve read Christopher Hitchens book. His basic problem is with Judeo Christian concepts of sin or law.

When I go to a doctor for a physical and he puts me on a treadmill and asks me to run, I don’t complain about his standards being too high. When I fall short and run out of breath, the doctor does not gloat that I have failed, he points out that by missing the goal I have demonstrated that my heart is sick. That’s the purpose of the law, to show that our heart is sick and in need of medicine. A medicine that is free to all. A salvation that is so easy and available that it transcends race, culture, IQ, gender, language and age. It does not require rigorous acts of piety, devotion or spiritual practices as other religions do. All it requires is a yes. Yes, you are God and I need help. All that the dying thief said was “please remember me when you come into your Kingdom.”

No one is condemned to hell, the entire human race is destined to life if we will only say yes and take the hand offered. How could He make the way any easier?

Christopher Hitchens has looked at the God of the Old Testament, selectively ignored any words or deeds of grace, mercy and love, ignored theology, apologetics, history and re-cast Him into a wrathful, arbitrary God in order to reject Him. He is very skilled and clever at recreating God in order to reject Him.

Christopher Hitchens also dredges up the Salem witch trials where 25 were killed, the inquisition, where 10,000 were given death warrants and conveniently ignores every atheistic experiment such as Russia where 61,000,000 citizens were killed, 1,000,000 Chinese citizens killed under Chairman Mao, 2,000,000 under Pol Pot. How did Christopher deal with this in the debates?

Christopher lumps all religions together which allows him to tar Christianity with the defects of Islam.

Christopher Hitchens is a very entertaining, clever writer with some good points to be made about the aberations of religion. However, in the end, Christopher Hitchens is too clever for his own good.

April 10, 2008

I think Peter whupped Christopher on the subject of the Iraq war and Christopher trashed Peters lame argument for religion.

December 17, 2011

I haven't seen the debate yet but, for me, the very fact that Christopher has a moral stance from which he so vehemently pronounces an action "barbarism" makes me want to ask him what he uses as an authoritative source for his moral position. The very fact that he recognizes and judges certain behaviors as evil or wrong seems to indicate that he would have to concede that sin and a moral law exists though he wouldn't call it that.

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