This is a bad time of year for atheists. So much so that they are showing signs of desperation. In the cesspool that is Uncle Sam’s capital, an unusual Christmas message began appearing last week on the side of buses and trains: ‘No god? No problem!’ Some 270 of these ads have gone up, paid for by secular groups in cities around the country. Similar signs are being placed on buses and billboards in New York, Las Vegas, Chicago, Los Angeles and other Sodom and Gomorrahs, including London, Toronto and Montreal. I say, so what? Sometimes I think the anti-Christian forces take Christ more seriously than most nominal Christians do. Atheists are jealous of the Christmas season. While we have Jesus and the Jews have the prophets, what have they got? Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, and the ghastly Bono — as motley a group as those who voted for Qatar in exchange for 3 million pieces of silver.
Once upon a time religion was equated with ignorance and superstition, which eventually gave way to science, fact and reason. Secular élites banged the drum loudly, exhorting us to acknowledge that the world was better off without Christ and God. Unfortunately, it was the other way round. At the turn of the millennium it was pretty hard not to notice that the 20th century, when these buggers more or less prevailed among the pseudo-élites who rule over us, had been the worst one yet for death and destruction and out-and-out state murder. Denouncing God and in turn Jesus has turned us into savages, which has in turn led to a spiritual quest by most decent people of the Western world.
Mind you, the natural reaction to Christ is to reject him. He said so. He later predicted his own death and told his followers they must expect persecution. His bitterest enemies weren’t atheists, however, they were the most religious men of his age, the Pharisees. (Today’s Pharisees worship Wall Street and Big Oil.) Paul Johnson once wrote in these here pages, ‘No wise man and no great artist leaves out God.’ The all-knowing Paul wrote that it is far more difficult to prove that God doesn’t exist than that he does. All the poor little Greek boy knows is that whenever I’ve met scientists who had something to do with space they said that the more knowledge they acquired, the more they believed in a higher being. The same goes for some great musicians I’ve known. The awe, say, over Schubert’s great works goes hand-in-hand with the kind of gift only God can bestow. His last three Piano Sonatas, which he wrote while terminally ill aged 31, are proof that this was a command coming from the top, at least according to Maestro Dimitri Mitropoulos.
What I find ironic about resisting Jesus is that it’s nothing new. When Jesus began to preach he accompanied his words with miracles. The blind saw, the deaf heard and lepers were healed. His enemies could not dispute his miracles — too many witnesses — so they disputed his words. They do so to this day. I say let them. When I come across atheist scum, I do not reach for my gun, but nor do I reach for the crucifix around my neck. Someone better than the little Greek boy will take care of them later on, or perhaps sooner than they think.
The success of the West, including the rise of science, rested entirely on religious foundations, and the people who brought it about were devout Christians. So says Rodney Stark in his Victory of Reason. According to Stark, Christianity alone among the world’s religions conceived a coherent world that worked through the application of reason and logic. Nothing new, says the great religious scholar Taki. Even the Ancient Greeks, in their mistaken idealism, accorded their genius to Gods, however human they made them out to be. Once Jesus was revealed, it all made sense.
A Godless Christmas seems to me a very sad and morbid occasion. For strutting atheists it is a very bad time. And it’s getting worse. The war on Christmas has failed, as stores, schools and public places have had enough of the secular bullies. Christmas trees are now once again called Christmas trees, rather than holiday trees, and you can wish one a happy Christmas without being called an anti-Semite or a bigot. As always, the bad guys overplayed their hand.
Which I did too. Too many Christmas parties have left me looking like Peter Lorre after Bogie was through with him in The Maltese Falcon. The Big Bagel knows how to celebrate Christmas. Everyone gives parties, and at times it seems everyone invited the poor little Greek boy to shorten the time until he meets his maker. It started on 2 December, at my son’s birthday party in his flat in Brooklyn, where I met a beautiful 24-year-old named Flora, from Edinburgh University. Of course nothing can compare with my Low life colleague’s meetings with the ‘Cow girl’, which my English friends who came over for a brief visit couldn’t wait to read the next instalment of. ‘What about High life?’ I asked them. ‘Don’t you find it fun any more?’ ‘Oh, yes, it’s OK, but I literally can’t wait to read what happens next with old Jeremy,’ said his one-time host Tim Hoare, as he finished the third bottle of very expensive vino.
Oh, well, Jeremy Clarke is more fun to read, less preachy, but that’s because he’s 20 years younger. To all of you a very happy Christmas and New Year.