Location: Home » Evangelical Resources » Atheism

Evangelical Resources on Atheism

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Articles
  3. Audio
  4. Debates
  5. Books
  6. Websites
  7. Observations
  8. UT-Dallas Specific Information
  9. Conclusion


Atheism: A non-prophet organization.

Harry Newton, Newton's Telecom Dictionary, 15th Edition
Telecom Books, 1999. ISBN: 1-57820-031-8

"A little philosophy inclineth man's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion."

Francis Bacon, "Of Atheism" in Essays

In the post-Enlightenment world, many people find the intellectual life of post-Fundamentalist Christianity extremely unsatisfying. This is often due to rampant anti-intellectualism in the Christian church, abusive church environments, and the hypocrisy of Christian leaders and laity alike.

While I have already documented some of the postmodern developments in other pages on this site (see Evangelical Resources on Wicca and Neopaganism and Evangelical Resources on Truth and Postmodernism), I have not as yet documented much in the way of modernist responses in the current world. Thus, this page is devoted to a casual discussion of approaches that can be used to discuss the Christian faith meaningfully with self-described atheists and others who are skeptical of the claims of Jesus Christ.

Other titles are often confused with the term "atheist" because of basic philosophical similarities. For the purposes of this discussion, I will loosely use the umbrella-term "Modernist" to refer to an individual who holds to any of these philosophical schools:

For the purpose of this discussion, a Modernist will be defined as an individual who rejects either Christianity or religion (traditional or not) on a rational basis primarily apart from emotional response.

All modernists share a distaste for the supernatural, the concept of a God working actively within space-time, and to anti-intellectual or existential approaches to belief - particularly with respect to religious belief. The history of modernist philosophies in the United States is interesting because of the nation's obsession with religion. Many movements, particularly the freethought movement that arose in the twentieth century, carry a distinct sectarian bent that is a clear reflection of the religious tradition of the United States. This is especially clear in the mirroring of the religious traditions of the Evangelical Consensus by various modernist movements, albeit with an anti-theistic bias. This explains the rise of "Freethought Congregations," "Atheist Prayer Meetings," and "Humanist Churches" in the fabric of North American culture.

Interestingly enough, though Modernists tend to fight voraciously with theists, Christian apologists often find themselves fighting battles on similar fronts: exposing televangelists, internet hoaxes, conspiracy theories, alleged occult and paranormal phenomena, questionable creationist arguments, money-making cults, UFOs and astronomical crazes, etc. In academic culture, Modernists often fight against Postmodernist methodologies, and in the process take on foes of Christians as well. A classic example is James F. Harris's Against Relativism: A Philosophical Defense of Method, which exposes the weak foundations of Derrida, Kuhn, Goodman, Quine, and other postmodern relativistic philosophies. Indeed much common ground does exist between the Christian apologists and modernists in this regard.

Where common ground does not exist, however, there have been epic philosophical battles between Christians and Modernists, since the beginning of the Modern philosophical era. From David Hume and Immanuel Kant of the eighteenth century, up to the twentieth century naturalist philosophers such as Bertrand Russell and Carl Sagan, Modernist philosophy has served to challenge Christian Theism to grow and progress in its understanding of the world around us and of the God who created it. Their contribution to our understanding of the Christian worldview cannot be understated, despite the mixed record of Christian response to these forms of criticism, particularly in the post-fundamentalist anti-intellectual climate of twentieth century Evangelicalism.

If you have comments, issues, or concerns, please email me directly: michaelh@ductape.net





General Audience

Books For Christians


The following list includes some of the more intense resources that argue specific points put forward by atheists. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but this will certainly get one started.




Atheists and other modernists provide a great vigor in the field of understanding the historical and philosophical basis of the Christian faith. Many who were opposed to theism in general and Christianity in particular have gone from trying to prove Christianity is false to becoming some of Christianity's greatest spokespersons. This is because Christianity is not an existential blind leap of faith, but belief grounded in historical and scientific fact. While they may seem tough and rigid on the exterior, atheists and modernists are not beyond setting aside their intellectual elitism to honestly consider the case for Christian faith.