I recently did a tongue in cheek post on atheism apologetics. I received some push back by some atheists, which is fine. But it also made me want to clarify my position and explain where I was coming from.
I do not hate atheists. I do not hate anyone. What do I think of atheists? That is as hard to answer as saying what I think of any group, including Christians. Atheism will include a huge variety of people, ranging from people very easy to be around to those less so. I see atheists as regular people.
The blog post I wrote was not written out of intolerance for atheists. It was more written out of confusion as an ex-atheist. I was one of those passive atheists that I mentioned. I really did not care what other people believed or did. I knew people who attended church and believed in God and I did not look down on them. Theism was not for me (at least not then) and I did not worry about other people. When I see atheists who work hard and spend money and write books to try and convert people to atheism, I am confused. Why bother? If Christianity works for people, who cares? If atheism is true, it does not matter what anyone believes.
The other part of my frustration that found its way into my post comes from my role as a historian. In many ways my apologetics comes less from my Christianity and more from my love of history. When I see anyone (atheists or Christians) twisting history for their own purposes, it ticks me off. My comment about the Bible as history was not an attempt to argue for the inerrancy of the Bible but to suggest that the religious nature of the Bible does not remove its historical value. We can discuss the Bible on historical grounds, but its canonization will not be a determining factor.
So what do I think of atheists? I like atheists. Some atheist apologists push the limits of history and philosophy and science. But then, so do some Christian apologists. My challenge to atheists and Christians and everyone else is to continue to seek the truth. Listen to each other, learn from each other and embrace the truth wherever you find it (even in the Bible!).