In a pluralist society, such as the one our leaders and culture are creating, there are times in which ideas will clash. People having this view of the world come to this conclusion, while people who have that view come to that conclusion. In a world of competing views and ideas, there is bound to be conflict. Yet, it seems unlikely that any who advocates such pluralism would have envisioned that these situations would turn murderous or even violent. But, this is exactly what has happened in Chapel Hill NC.
Fox is reporting:
A man who portrayed himself as an avowed atheist on social media was in custody early Wednesday after allegedly gunning down three Muslim students in a condominium complex near the University of North Carolina hours earlier.
Now we are not told that the motive for the murders were religious, but it seems there is no other connection.
The Raleigh News-Observer reports
Craig Stephen Hicks, 46, is being held in the Durham County Jail on three counts of first-degree murder.
Hicks is accused of shooting his Finley Forest neighbors, Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, and his wife Yusor Abu-Salha, 21, and Abu-Salha’s sister, Razan Abu-Salha, 19, of Raleigh.
Several posts on Hicks’ Facebook account points to his hostility toward the religious. Fox further reports:
a Facebook page in Hicks’ name described him as a supporter of “Atheists for Equality” and in a recent post he asked “why radical Christians and radical Muslims are so opposed to each others’ influence when they agree about so many ideological issues.” The victims’ religion and Hicks’ outspoken beliefs fueled broad online speculation that the murders were a hate crime.
And even if Hicks was not motivated to kill the three victims because of their religion, it still points to the outcome of his atheistic worldview. Some will point to his mental state or maybe even some event that pushed him to this action, but the real reason is told us in the Scriptures.
Proverbs 8:35-36 read
“For he who finds me finds life
And obtains favor from the Lord.
“But he who [a]sins against me injures himself;
All those who hate me love death.”
You cannot accept any idea without it having an effect on you. Ideas have consequences. As we accept one thing as true, we shape the way we will see the rest of the world. A world without God is a cold and brutal world. There is no reason for goodness, love, or tolerance without a Creator and Judge.
Hicks had nothing in his worldview restraining him from this action. With the atheist, though many try to deny it, he can at best be Amoral. He has no reason but the fear of punishment to restrain his actions. For the atheist, there is no right or wrong there is only action. This is why the proverb holds true. The absence of God leads to death, and those who hate God love death. They have no reason to think or feel otherwise.
Hicks was living out his worldview whether he knew it or not.
To learn more about how ideas affect us, check out Gary DeMar’s book Thinking Straight in a Crooked World.