“Let’s assume that instead of atheists rejecting ideas which are illogical or unsound, Steve’s right: atheists are simply dead to the things of God. If this were so, then evangelism would be a waste of time; it’d be like throwing a tennis ball against concrete and wondering why it bounced back.
“Yes yes, the Bible tells you to spread the word despite the fact that people are going to be unable to hear/understand it. What really confuses me is that evangelists like Steve and some of his fans here often try to defend what they say and how they say it.”
There is another reason why Christians share their message with others beside the fact that we are told to (though that should be the primary reason): It’s because…
It’s because we trust in the power of God’s Word.
Yes, we are told to “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have,” (1 Peter 3:15)—but many times those answers are not good enough for the unbeliever.
A Christian’s appeal to an all-powerful God as the reason for the beginning of everything is considered simplistic and superstitious to a “thinking” atheist. For a believer to acknowledge that all created things must have a Creator is to frame the argument wrongly according to the skeptic (Who says that this is creation?). And to point out that there is wonderful design to all things because of a Designer leads only to the evolutionary response: “It only appears to be designed.”
So what’s a disciple of Christ to do when confronted with daily antagonistic refutations of his faith?
Preach the Word.
The Word has two effects on a person: a hardening of the heart, or a softening of the heart: Pharaoh, in the account of the 10 plagues in the book of Exodus, shows how God uses His Word to bring about His purposes in hardening a heart for His glory. The Ninevites repenting in response to the preaching of Jonah demonstrates how God softens hearts for His glory. (Jonah 3:3-10)
In the New Testament, Acts 17, Paul’s arguments for a Savior were met with much derision while preaching the Good News to the philosophers of his day, some responding with “What is this babbler trying to say?” and “He seems to be advocating foreign gods.” Some even sneered (a hardening of hearts). But others said, “We want to hear you again on this subject.” A few men even became followers of Paul and believed (a softening of hearts).
As the rain and the snow
come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:10-11)
God’s Word is always the right way to go.
If you don’t know what to say to an atheist because he’s smarter than you, bigger than you, brasher or just plain meaner than you, then preach the Word. God will use it one way or the other—to harden hearts, to soften hearts.
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrew 4:12)
Why rely on foolish and senseless disputations that will only lead to more rebuttals, more frustrations, more snickers and eye-rollings, and more foolish talk and senseless disputations from the “enlightened” set?
Preach the Word.
Sometimes, the best Christian argument is…none at all!