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Christians Insane?
Delusional?   

Q. Belief in Christianity and all religions are just forms of mental illness. Modern, rational, thinking people do not need a god or belief structure to live happily or satisfactorily in today's world. Intelligent people do not need childish things to bolster their self-esteem and sense of self worth. Religion is just childish thinking.

Answer:

All Cultures Embrace Religion

That seems like a naive, arrogant and biased view of mankind. After all, religion has been a vital part of all cultures and world history since our earliest records of mankind.

If you define mental illness as behavior and beliefs outside of the norm, then it is the atheists' rantings and ravings that are true signs of mental illness.

By the way, would you dare to say such a thing to a Moslem or Hindu believer? (I doubt it). Thank goodness Christians believe in the dignity of mankind and your right to free speech.




Atheists' Short History

The theory that religion is an "illness" took root within late 18th century Humanism where it was fashionable to be anti-religious. Later, Communist propaganda in places like China and Russia wanted middle-class citizens to look to the State to supply all their needs.

Religion was seen as competition for devotion to the all powerful State. In this climate, Christian and Jewish believers were forced into "Thought Reform" camps or insane asylums to challenge their "aberrant" religious thinking-processes.

So much for the dignity of mankind and a right to free speech.

Who is Really Crazy?

Currently, it appears that almost all religions are tolerated worldwide except for Christianity and Judaism - even religions that promote violence and terrorism. Christian believers are set on fire, tortured, brutally killed, or at best shunned by family members and political groups.

For what? Turning the other cheek? Please…

Now you tell me: Who is really "crazy?"





The Better Part

In the United States we have people like Ted Turner who contend that "Christianity is for losers," or Jesse Ventura's belief that "faith is a crutch for weak-minded people."



However, this "theory" and the arrogant statements of ignorant men have not been around very long. It does not claim the greater or better part of mankind's history.

After all, who founded Harvard, Princeton, Yale? Who built the best hospitals? Which doctors volunteer their time to suffering peoples in forsaken lands? Ted Turner? Jesse Ventura?

Mostly Christians do! That's who. Franklin Graham and others like him come to mind.




Neurological Basis of Belief?

Furthermore, neurological research now finds that a particular part of the brain is connected to religious experiences! It appears to be a fundamental part of our DNA.

This gives new meaning to the willful ignorance of unbelievers because "that which is known about God is evident within them, for God made it evident to them" (Romans 1:19).

In fact, is it possible that people who deny their own religious inclinations are missing or are denying basic elements within their own DNA? After all, human beings are now thought to have a "God gene."

Fools

God has some special things to say about the atheist:

"The fool has said in his heart, 'There is no God.'" (Psalm 14:1 and 53:1).


Evil, Sick, Emotions

In addition, God has something to say about mental illness, too. Noting that the "heart" is the seat of emotions in Old Testament passages, Jeremiah says:

"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick. Who can understand it?" (Jer. 17:9, ESV).





God Creates a New Heart within Us

It is interesting that God speaks of creating a new heart for believers - He is not just doing a "remodeling job" on our old hearts. Yet, it seems that almost everything else in creation will be recreated - just not the heart. The heart needs to be made anew. This is because the heart - our emotions - is sick with evil.

We encourage readers to look up Psalm 51:10 and Ezekiel 36:26. Our emotional state is so sick that we will be given a new mental outlook. I look forward to that, don't you?

"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me" (Ps. 51:10, ESV).

"And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you…" (Ezek. 36:26)




Guarding our Hearts&Minds

Nevertheless, in the book of Philippians Paul tells believers not to be anxious about anything but to pray with gratitude and to ask God for the things we need. By doing so, believers will have "the peace of God which surpasses all comprehension…which will guard your hearts and your minds… (Phil. 4:6-7).

Finally, 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us that "God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind" (NKJV).

S-I-N Positive

Thankfully, our heavenly Father knows that we are all temporarily insane and S-I-N positive - all of us - not just Christians or religious people. This is one reason the Lord tells us to constantly "renew our minds" (Romans 12:2).




Replace Thoughts with God's Thoughts

How do we renew our minds? By replacing our thoughts and feelings with the mind of God. We do this by daily reading and meditating upon His Word.

Remember Persecution Passage

I know it is difficult to remember specific verses when we are challenged by hateful people. But, perhaps it is time to heed some of Jesus' suggestions in the "persecution chapter," Matthew 10:

"Whoever does not receive you, nor heed your words, as you go out of that house or that city, shake the dust off your feet. Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city" (Matt. 10:14-15, NASB).

Knowing that unbelieving people are really the most "sick" ones who will face judgment by a holy God, we can genuinely "love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" (Matthew 5:44).

- Unbelievers are to be pitied.

- Love them.

- Pray for them.

And then it's time to move on…forgetting the past and looking ahead to the good things we are promised (Philippians 3:13-14).







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