Thursday, January 25, 2007

Call to Prayer

In the January 15 issue of Publishers Weekly, the #1 selling hardcover book in the “religion” category was anti-religious: The God Delusion, written by atheist Richard Dawkins. Number four on the list was Sam Harris’s Letter to a Christian Nation. another anti-God missive. Sandwiched in between was Rick Warren’s The Purpose-Driven Life at #2, and Joel Osteen’s Your Best Life Now, at #3. Also in the Top Ten that week were books by Joel Rosenberg (published by Tyndale), Max Lucado (W), John Eldredge (Nelson), and Philip Yancey (Zondervan).

Think there’s no spiritual warfare in the book industry?

Here’s the copy about The God Delusion on Dawkins’ web site:

With rigor and wit, Richard Dawkins examines God in all his forms, from the sex-obsessed tyrant of the Old Testament to the more benign (but still illogical) Celestial Watchmaker favored by some Enlightenment thinkers. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the supreme improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry, and abuses children, buttressing his points with historical and contemporary evidence. The God Delusion makes a compelling case that belief in God is not just wrong, but potentially deadly. It also offers exhilarating insight into the advantages of atheism to the individual and society, not the least of which is a clearer, truer appreciation of the universe's wonders than any faith could ever muster.

I propose a direct campaign in support of Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris. (In support of their souls, that is.) It’s very simple, carried out very privately: pray that the God they deny will open their eyes.

Of course, these two men and their followers can’t be the least offended by our campaign. No point in them leaving nasty comments on this blog. After all, there is no God, and we’re talking to thin air. So if we want to waste our time, why should that bother any of them in the least? What is the point of arguing with the deluded?

I propose using Isaiah 50:4-5 as our verses for prayer. These are prophetic verses of Jesus (and therefore very powerful). And they speak of using words, which these men now do to promote their beliefs.

Lord God, give Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris the tongues of disciples,
That they may know how to sustain the weary one with a word.
Awaken them morning by morning,
Awaken their eyes to listen as disciples.
Lord God, open their ears,
And keep them from disobedience.

Actually this is a great verse for just about anyone, isn't it?

I’m going to pray this for Dawkins and Harris in my morning devotions. I’m making the commitment. Anyone willing to join me?


Lynette Eason said...

I'll commit to it, Brandilyn. I think Christians need to do more of this kind of thing. I was actually thinking about a movie star who had given an interview and it was obvious she was just lost as a ball in tall grass. She didn't openly deny God, but her life was a mess and I just thought to myself, "She needs prayer." So, I've begun to pray for her. I will add Dawkins and Harris to my list. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Jannie Ernst said...

Brandilyn, I am joining the campaign! Just a word of confirmation: This morning, in our daily reading, my hubby and I read exactly the same verse in Isaiah 50. God is speaking to all of us!

Kristy Dykes said...

Great scripture prayer for these guys. We need to do more praying for lost souls. Thanks for reminding us today.

CHickey said...

If Darwin could accept Christ before he died, there's hope for everyone. How sad to believe that this life is all there is. Yes, let us pray.

Nick said...

I'd also like to pray for God to raise up men and women of faith who can counter these men with gusto. Rick Warren and Joel Osteen are fine...but what if we could have another author with the stature of a C.S. Lewis who could effectively counter these men's arguments? Authors, moved by the Holy Spirit, who can present the gospel on the printed page with power to convince...and to draw people to God.

And whose to say that can't be effectively done in fiction, as well? May God continue to bless Christian writers with a supernatural ability to fight the good fight at their keyboard!

Domino said...

Funny, I'd already penciled around these verses in my Bible. My opinion is that these men need us to pray a combination of Isaiah 50:4-5 and Numbers 23 verses about Balaam and his donkey.

If these men won't listen to people, then I can ask God to use an unusual voice to get their attention.

Yes, Lord, waken them every morning! Waken their ears to listen as one being taught. Open their ears to your goodness.

Nicole said...

Yeah, Nick! Let's hear it for some anointed writing via the Holy Spirit. Well said.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

I've been praying for them for several months. I've also been in several lenghty discussions over at Book, Inq, about those guys. you'd be surprized...well then again I guess you wouldn' how many people find it easier to believe in that errant way than to believe in the Lord!

Lee Ellen said...

Fabulous. I'm in a prayin' mood, thanks for the direction.

JediQB said...

Interestingly, I posted a link to your post and titled it "Pray for your favorite atheist". Today I got 2 google searches hit my blog while searching for "atheist". Heh. Not my intention, but good for them.

So obviously I'm supporting this, and hope that they do not harden their hearts like Pharaoh. I know God can have His way - but I think they have a choice to make as well.


Dineen A. Miller said...

Brandilyn, this brought me to tears. What you're doing, and what these fine posters are committing to... You just won't be touching the lives of these men. Your prayers will also affect the people who read these books.

Like my husband. He's a professed atheist and has read the books by both of these men. Needless to say, the aftermath was not easy to deal with. It can be heartwrenching just to see these books and how they umbrella out to even a young man openly denouncing the Holy Spirit on video.

So to you and all those committing to pray, I thank you from the deepest part of my heart. God bless you all.