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Thursday, 5 February 2015

The Stupidity of Stephen Fry

The "comedian, actor, writer, presenter, and activist" Stephen Fry has been much in the news this past week, railing against a 'God' that doesn't exist. A video clip has been released from a Southern Irish Television show, entitled: The Meaning of Life, which will be broadcast on RTE 1 at 10.30pm on Sunday night [8th February 2015].

This video clip shows Stephen Fry delivering a tirade, when asked what he would supposedly say to God at the gates of heaven. Fry, who claims to be an atheist, denounces this God of his own imagination as being "utterly evil, capricious and monstrous". He continues: "How dare you create a world in which there is such misery that is not our fault? It’s not right. …"It’s utterly, utterly evil. Why should I respect a capricious, mean-minded, stupid God who creates a world which is so full of injustice and pain?"

"Because the God who created this universe, if it was created by God, is quite clearly a maniac, utter maniac. Totally selfish. We have to spend our life on our knees thanking him?! What kind of god would do that?"

He concludes his tirade with the words: "It’s perfectly apparent that he is monstrous. Utterly monstrous and deserves no respect whatsoever. The moment you banish him, life becomes simpler, purer, cleaner, more worth living in my opinion."

The Word of God always has an answer, and a description, for people like Stephen Fry. He is not the first, and he will not the last, who would seek to shake their angry fist in the face of the God of heaven. There were the likes of Pharaoh before him who said something similar: And Pharaoh said, Who is the LORD, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the LORD, neither will I let Israel go, Exodus 5:2.

1. Like many an atheist Stephen Fry, by his outburst, actually acknowledges there is a God. His life is consumed with railing against this God that he can't get away from thinking about. How wise is it to spend so much energy railing against something you don't believe exists?

The rage of the likes of Stephen Fry only confirms that there is a witness in his conscience to the existence of God, as there is in every human being. Atheists are people who refuse to believe in God. This is the spirit the Psalmist makes mention of in Psalm 14:1 where the fool says there is no God for him.

In the book of Romans, chapter one we read of those who refused to retain God in their knowledge, cf. Romans 1:28. They are described as being vain and foolish and although professing themselves to be wise, they have become fools, Romans 1:21,22.

2. Stephen Fry, out of his own vain imagination, creates a caricature of God and then rails against that caricature. What sense is there in that course of action? He rails against a God who supposedly created "a world which is so full of injustice and pain".

Evidently he has never even read the opening chapter of the Bible. If he had, he would have readily learned that God created all things perfectly 'good'. Seven times we read this statement in the opening chapter of Genesis, cf. vv 4,10,12,18,21,25,31. The concluding statement in v31 reads that: God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. Does this suggest that God created a world of "injustice and pain"? Hardly!

The "injustice and pain", that is in the world, is not the result of God's creation but rather the result of man's deliberate sinning. Responsibility for all injustice and pain in the world lies not with God but squarely with sinful mankind. This is not something the likes of Stephen Fry ever want to acknowledge. It's always easier to rail against this imagined God that he doesn't believe exists anyway.

All sickness, disease, injustice, pain and ultimately death is traceable back to the actions of our first parents. God made mankind as rational and moral beings. Furthermore, He warned our first parents about the consequences of the choices they would make. They deliberately chose to sin, they chose to disobey the commandment not to eat of the forbidden fruit. Can God be held responsible for the rational, moral actions of the creature, who was clearly warned about the consequences beforehand?

Again taking responsibility for our actions is not something that sinful mankind likes to do. They ever desire to pass the responsibility on to someone else. This is all that Stephen Fry is foolishly and conveniently attempting to do.

3. Stephen Fry rails against having to give thanks to God. This spirit of unthankfulness is highlighted in Romans 1:21.  The Bible is very much up-to-date! Indeed this whole portion of Scripture in Romans chapter one* is well worth reading in its context [*see below]. It is a perfect fit for the likes of Stephen Fry. By his outburst Stephen Fry has just confirmed the truth of Scripture. God warns that in the last days the spirit outlined in Romans chapter one will be very prevalent.

4. Those who rail against God ultimately give themselves over to all manner of sin. Romans chapter one reveals what happens when men like Stephen Fry deny the existence of God and rail against Him. They are given up to the uncleanness of their sinful lusts, cf. Romans 1:24-32.

The God of heaven places a restraint upon sin in this world. If sin was given free reign the world would be a most wicked place, where the wicked lusts of sinful hearts would be given free expression. By the existence of government and civil law that reflects God's moral law; by the preaching of the Word of God and law of God; by the influence of Christians, who are to be salt and light; and ultimately by the working of His Holy Spirit in this world, God restrains sin from having full sway.

When an individual, or a society, chooses to cast off the knowledge of God and refuses to acknowledge Him that restraint is removed. All manner of sin breaks out as described in Romans 1:24-32. This removing of the restraint is designed to teach that person, or that society, the value of acknowledging and knowing God.

5. The world would not be a better place without God as Fry claims: "The moment you banish him, life becomes simpler, purer, cleaner, more worth living in my opinion". Only the society that truly acknowledges God will have less social breakdown, less violence, murder, sexual crime, war, injustice, suffering, anti-social behaviour, etc. This was the vital lesson that God taught the nation of Israel in Deuteronomy 28:1-68. Sadly it was a lesson subsequent generations failed to take heed to. Very similar to this present age, with the likes of Stephen Fry!

6. Stephen Fry will shortly discover whether there is a God or not. Each one of us are going the way of all the earth. We are but sojourners in this world. We are only passing through. Soon we all will pass out into eternity. The opening words of the last verse of Romans chapter one remind us of the coming day of judgment: Who knowing the judgment of God…. We all will give an account of ourselves to God, Stephen Fry included!

Instead of railing against God every mouth will be stopped before God on that day of judgment. Such will be the awareness of God's holiness and man's sinfulness that not one word will be spoken against God. Stephen Fry, and his like, will be strangely silent on that day: Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God, Romans 3:19.

Like those of whom we read of in John 8:9, unconverted, unwashed, unforgiven sinners will be convicted by their own consciences. The only voice that will be heard will be that of God telling those who wanted nothing to do with Him in life that now they can live separated from Him for all eternity.

The God, Bible believing Christians acknowledge, is today a God of mercy and of grace who takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. He would have sinners to repent and believe the gospel and thereby escape the eternal consequences of their sins. Stephen Fry included!

*Romans 1:21-32:
Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

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