First off it needs to be noted that Atheism is not a neutral position. It is a belief-system built upon the presupposition that there is no God, including the Triune God of Christianity. Therefore, Atheism is a conscious rejection of God and His written revelation, i.e., the Bible. However, not only does Atheism consciously reject God, it also, at the same time, wilfully accepts the idea that man is the measure of all things. In Christian parlance Atheism substitutes God and His written revelation for the reasoning of man. Thus man replaces God.
Man is his own god in Atheism and, as such, Atheism is free to define its own morality, i.e., how human beings should live their lives, individually and collectively, i.e., as if God does not exist. Thus, Atheism is just another religion.
All morality grounds itself in religious presuppositions – however much the materialists deny it. Every civil law derives from man’s sense of right and wrong. His notions of right and wrong derive from his fundamental beliefs about life. Fundamental beliefs are the very definition of religion. Therefore, it should be clear that there is no such thing as a purely irreligious civil order.
Christianity had influenced Western Civilisation so much so that in the past the West has been referred as “Christendom.” To be sure, the 1500s Protestant Reformation was hindered and set back by the Roman Catholic Counter Reformation, but even so, the great freedoms that we enjoy, nay, the great freedoms we now are losing, have their source in the teaching of the Bible.
Among other things the great Reformer John Calvin (1509-64) developed the area of the adiaphora (i.e., things indifferent), paving the way for cultural development without any interference of pope or prince. In other words the individual’s conscience – with regard to culture (food, drink, clothing, music, art, entertainment, etc.) – was bound only by God speaking in His Word, which is to say that the individual was accountable directly to God and not the Church and/or the State.
By demonstrating that popes and princes, like every other member of society, are under the authority of God’s Word, Samuel Rutherford (1600-61), for example, in and by his “Lex Rex” set society free from unlawful interference from Church and State. The Bible was to be the source of law and order in society as opposed to the whims of popes and prices.
To be sure, there have always been dissenters who do not want the Triune God to be the Law-giver. They do not want Jesus Christ to be their Ruler. Indeed, there have been many movements over the centuries that have sought to overthrow the Bible-based system of law and order – for example, the already mentioned Roman Catholic Counter Reformation with its universal papal authority and church traditions, the French Revolution setting up “Reason” as its god, and the Communist Revolution in Russia with its “Dialectical Materialism” to name a few. By rejecting the authority of God alone as He speaks according to Scripture alone each revolutionary movement was seeking to establish the authority of either the Church or the State over the individual and society as a whole. As such the freedoms we enjoy on account of the teaching of the Bible are removed and oppression of the masses ensues.
Atheists are free to believe that God does not exist. Christianity brought that freedom! However, contemporary Atheism has become a militant Atheism, a fundamentalist Atheism. Modern Atheism is beginning to impose its life and world view on to Western societies. It is beginning to ram its religion down our throats. How so?
We have to expose the fallacy that secular humanism represents religious neutrality. To banish religious expressions and observances from public life is to create an atheistic state, and that is itself a militantly religious position, making atheism the established and endowed religion. Prayer is dismissed as superstition, and such ‘heresies’ and ‘blasphemies’ as the doctrine of Creation and condemnation of homosexual practices must be suppressed.
Bottom line: Atheism is a religion.