Re: [asa] D'Souza vs. Hitchens - Surrending the debate

From: Jim Armstrong <>
Date: Wed Oct 31 2007 - 18:39:47 EDT

This seems like a stretch.

Perhaps I was not clear. In my P.S., I intended to convey that the
person's understanding is in fact that of an atheist. All that exists is
the natural world and its artifacts, and nothing else, ...nothing
transcendant. He might respect the natural, but without worship, there
is not idolatry by conventional definition.

I guess I can see where you are coming from, but the words "ultimate"
and "divine" flow from your perspective, not that of the atheist. He
does not assign the attribute of "ultimate", let alone "divine" when
considering the natural world. Without those sensibilities, there is no
worship. Accordingly, it's not clear at all how the atheist is guilty of
idolatry. Perhaps an evangelistic atheist might be construed as guilty
of idolatry in the sense of him being missionary about the "negative
space". But not so for a more run of the mill atheist if the basic
definition of idolatry applies. He is more guilty of infraction of the,
"...believe that He is..." condition.

Regards JimA [Friend of ASA]

Terry M. Gray wrote:

> On Oct 31, 2007, at 12:15 PM, Jim Armstrong wrote:
>> P.S. In the extreme case of one who understands that the physical world
>> is all there is, the label is atheist, not idolater.
> If the physical world is all that there is then it is "ultimate"--
> thus "divine". If you take anything as "ulitmate" besides the true
> God then it is idolatry. You don't have to call something God in
> order for you to act as if it is God.
> See Roy Clouser's Knowing with the Heart
> TG
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Received on Wed Oct 31 18:40:12 2007

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