Sunday, April 07, 2013

Lessons From An Atheist

A couple of years ago I was in Mobile, Alabama, for the state Pastor’s Conference and was struck by the truth in a video presented by one of the speakers.  As an introduction to his message, one speaker used a clip from a man named Penn Jillette.  Admittedly I live a sheltered life so I had never heard of the magician team of “Penn and Tiller” nor did I realize who it was ‘on the screen’ when Penn’s name was mentioned and his face appeared.  Yet, the words this avowed atheist spoke still echoes in my soul
Penn told the story of a man, a “Gideon”, giving him, an atheist, a New Testament.  It seems that because of the way this Gideon presented himself; Penn was very affected by the meeting.   
First, the Gideon was very complimentary of the show and it was noted that this was stated in a truly authentic way. 
Next, the Gideon was very nice to Penn; a fact that Penn mentioned no less than twice.
Next, the Gideon looked Penn in the eye; this one truth was high on the list of the atheist.
Finally, when the Gideon walked away, this non-believer was impressed with his kindness, goodness, and his honest concern. 
Perhaps those who believe in Jesus and attempt to live like He desires could learn a few of the characteristics Jesus displayed in His earthly life from the words of this atheist.
The ‘take-way’ for me was Penn’s stunning words as he spoke about proselytizing.  I offer this question for all those who wear the name of Jesus, believe in Heaven and Hell, and eternity.
Penn said, “If you believe beyond a shadow of a doubt in eternity, heaven, hell, and Jesus; how much do you have to HATE someone NOT to tell them.”  He went on to say, “Just because it is socially awkward is no excuse for refusing to tell someone they are in danger.”
There is an old saying which goes, “Out of the mouth of babes.”  I submit “out of the mouth of non-believers.”

(Checkout Pastor Jerry’s web site @ )

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