Comment: Atheism is a rational belief that there is no God.

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Atheism is a rational belief that there is no God.

"For the Christians who might read this, atheism is based on reality itself"

This depends upon what one understands reality to be. My guess is that you mean the visible, sensible universe that is accessible to observation by the natural five senses and includes inferences drawn from such observation. If this is indeed what you mean then you have arbitrarily eliminated any possibility of the existence of other dimensions that are not accessible to the natural five senses and reasoning based upon the evidence derived from them.

These other dimensions are usually referred to as spiritual and are understood to be accessible to the spirit of the human being who has been empowered to so access them by the denizens of these dimensions or by the One who created everything in the first place. Self evidently if one denies the very existence of such dimensions then it is impossible to access them unless empowered to do so by a sovereign act of God Himself as was the apostle Paul on the road to Damascus. In other words God is not limited by the wilfulness of man.

However, there have been literally millions of events during the past two thousand years, including this present age, that are well attested to for which there is no rational explanation based upon physical evidence. The claims made for these events have always been that the Spirit of Jesus Christ operating in one of His followers has healed diseases, caused the blind to see, the deaf to hear, the crippled to walk and the dead to live again. That there have been frauds perpetrated has also been recorded but this will always be the case: where the Spirit of God is working the adversary of God is producing counterfeits. This has also been ordained of God to test His saints.

These events, or signs of the Spirit of God at work, have been given for the express purpose of glorifying the Name of Jesus and to validate His message of reconciliation that is preached by His messengers. He does this in order to reach even the sceptical searcher who is willing to accept the reality of the spiritual dimensions and their activity in the lives of humanity. The greatest sign that was given was of course that of His resurrection, His ascension into the highest spiritual realm and His return in the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost in 33 A.D. to take up residence and generate new life in His waiting disciples.

"There is no existing historical proof for his existence."

As I have mentioned above, the evidence for the Reality of the Lord Jesus Christ is well attested to, not only from the records of His life when on the Earth in human form, but of His continuing work in His followers and messengers since that time throughout the past two thousand years. There have been literally millions of pages written about His work in that time resulting in the conversion of billions to His Kingdom.

With regard to the question of Jewish law and the testimony of the Gospel writers, I have no doubt that the scriptures are accurate since they are inspired by the Giver of the Law Himself. One of the scriptures from the Law that applies to this event is Deuteronomy 21:21-23:

"If a person commits a sin punishable by death and is executed, and you hang the corpse on a tree, his body must not remain all night on the tree; instead you must make certain you bury him that same day, for the one who is left exposed on a tree is cursed by God. You must not defile your land which the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance."

It is true that the Roman governor was the only one with the authority to pass a death sentence by crucifixion and so fulfil the Law. However there was a trial before the Sanhedrin that preceded the trial before Pilate and in that trial the chief priests and elders passed a death sentence upon Jesus for the sin of blasphemy because He claimed to be the Son of God. They then conspired to deliver Him to Pilate to be tried for sedition, the evidence for which they themselves provided. Since they were the cause of the trial and the prosecutors and since they demanded the death sentence the Law itself holds them responsible for the ultimate execution carried out at the hands of gentiles. This is clearly stated by the apostle Peter in his first speech to the men of Israel after the coming of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost.

“Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man clearly attested to you by God with powerful deeds, wonders, and miraculous signs that God performed among you through him, just as you yourselves know – this man, who was handed over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you executed by nailing him to a cross at the hands of Gentiles. But God raised him up, having released him from the pains of death, because it was not possible for him to be held in its power.

For David says about him,

‘I saw the Lord always in front of me,

for he is at my right hand so that I will not be shaken.

Therefore my heart was glad and my tongue rejoiced;

my body also will live in hope,

because you will not leave my soul in Hades,

nor permit your Holy One to experience decay.

You have made known to me the paths of life;

you will make me full of joy with your presence.’

“Brothers, I can speak confidently to you about our forefather David, that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. So then, because he was a prophet and knew that God had sworn to him with an oath to seat one of his descendants on his throne, David by foreseeing this spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was neither abandoned to Hades, nor did his body experience decay. This Jesus God raised up, and we are all witnesses of it. So then, exalted to the right hand of God, and having received the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, he has poured out what you both see and hear."

The consistent message of the Gospel of the Kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ has been preached throughout the past two thousand years and has been believed in by millions who have testified in word and deed of their personal experience of His power in their lives. Many have died rather than recant their faith.

This is surely evidence of the kind that even the most sceptical rationalist must accept and they therefore have no excuse for refusing to believe. It is only by the sovereign grace of God that men are saved so that grace will still save even those who have rejected Him, when it is their time to be apprehended for the Kingdom. Refusal to believe does not disqualify anyone from receiving the Life of God in due time. If we have borne the image of the earthly man we shall also bear the image of the Heavenly Man.

"Jesus answered them: 'Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.'" (John 8:34-36)