As a Christian what is the most effective and useful way to talk to an Atheist about the gospel? Some of us believe we must store up many rational, philosophical, and scientific arguments to use. Others of us believe that it’s all about the evidence…..if we just gather enough evidence for God’s existence then we will be able to refute all of the Atheist’s arguments and win them to Christ. Still, others of us think they are a lost cause and cannot be reached because they have rejected God and have hardened their hearts toward him, but what if there is a better, more biblical way to reach Atheists with the gospel? What if we could tap into and rely on the power of God and less of ourselves? If we are serious about reaching Atheists and everyone with the gospel, then why wouldn’t we want to be more effective at it?
We must understand this first of all that the Atheist’s problem isn’t primarily intellectual or emotional, but it’s spiritual. The intellectual and emotional problems that many of Atheists claim to have with God really stem from a lack of spiritual life and ignorance that is in them. Ephesians 2:18 says “being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their hearts. There’s a darkened understanding, an exclusion from the life of God due to ignorance that results from a hardness of their heart. They don’t know God, and are ignorant of a relational knowledge him. So, if the root problem is spiritual, then the solution must also be spiritual, and I believe that God’s provided tools to equip us in speaking with Atheists about the gospel. Once we recognize and trust the tools that God’s given us we’ll never have to be at a loss again about what to say when someone says “I don’t believe in God”, “God doesn’t exist”, or when they proudly ask “What evidence is there for God’s existence?”
The Toolbox Of God’s Word
So what’s the toolbox that God has given us? The theme of this blog of course. It’s written that:
“All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
We’re told that ALL SCRIPTURE is PROFITABLE so that the man and woman of God may be ADEQUATE and EQUIPPED for EVERY GOOD WORK. When the verse says every good work, doesn’t that also include evangelism, apologetics, and reaching Atheists with the gospel? Absolutely! This isn’t just for pastors, missionaries, and professional ministers preaching to churches, but this is for ordinary Christians sharing the gospel with Atheists and other unbelievers as well! God equips every believer to share the Gospel with Atheists through his word, and he makes them adequate to do so! It’s not complicated! We don’t need to be geniuses, intellectuals, college grads, or professional debaters equipped with wit and a sharp mind to reach Atheists with the gospel. We just need to be people reliant on God, and equipped with His word in our hearts. If you have access to scripture then you have God’s toolbox, the sword of the Spirit at your disposal, but will you trust it and use it? I’ll admit that I’ve had my doubts about the Bible REALLY being enough to reach an Atheist, and have witnessed first hand through online interaction the accusations of circular reasoning, anger, scoffing, and mocking when the Bible is quoted, but that doesn’t mean that scripture does no good when quoted to a proud unbelieving heart because it’s sharper than any two edged sword.
Tools From The Toolbox
The following verses I believe prove useful for talking with Atheists when sharing the gospel with them. I will also be posting more blog entries with more in depth information on how to use the verses when speaking with Atheists in witnessing conversations.
1 Thessalonians 1:10
Stay tuned for the next post on how to use these scriptures to talk with an Atheist!