When I decided to appear as a guest on "The Atheist Experience," (a popular TV cable show) there were many comments from atheists on my blog saying that I was walking into a lion's den, and at best I was going to get chewed up and spat out. Christians said things like, "I am not sure talking to them would be worth it. Sort of like trying to cast pearls before swine," and "Pearls before swine, Ray..."
Granted, if you read the comments on my blog, "Atheist Central," you will see that most of the atheists who comment are bitter, blasphemous, judgmental, arrogant, and hate-filled. But while there are hundreds who comment, there are thousands who receive the blog by email and read the published column on other sites.
When I do an interview on an atheist radio or TV program I don't know who is tuning in, where it is going to end up on the Internet, and who are "swine" and who aren't. I'm no theologian, neither am I an eloquent apologist, but like every other Christian, I have access to the love of God. My goal isn't to win an argument; I'm out to win the lost…and love is how to do that.
While Jesus was nailed to the cross, He had love enough to pray for the forgiveness of the "swine" who put Him there. That's amazing love! Atheists are merely trying to nail me with words, so it's not hard to love them.
Someone asked, "Has any atheist been saved from reading Ray's blogs? Has anyone ever said, 'Ray, I was wrong, thank you…'?" For those who are interested, here are some encouraging emails I have received:
"I am an atheist…I have read much of your blog, from its innocent beginnings, to the turning point of the atheists flooding the comment pages… and as I read the hateful things the atheists say to/about you and God, I want to assure you that we are not all so closed-minded and hateful. I appreciate everything you are trying to do for us. I admire your unwavering faith, your tolerance and humor, and I know you will never give up on the atheists! Thank you for opening my mind."
"It's hard not to like him & I think that is where he scores points. Thunderfoot came unstuck because of this. Regardless of the debate and the points being made—Ray came across as a nicer guy. Offering to buy lunch was probably his killer punch."
"I tried to hate Ray but I can't!!!"
"I've been keeping up with your work (read the Free Wonderful Book from your website), and my sister and I are always ready to defend you/Christian evangelism when the topic comes up in discussion—your atheist supporters are still out there!"
Let's say you know someone who is well-educated, very intelligent, but extremely anti-Christian. You've tried to witness to him, but every time you even mention the name of Jesus, he gets extremely angry and blasphemes His name. That sickens you. One day you are horrified to hear that he was part of a gang who brutally murdered a Christian brother, and you even hear rumors that he was torturing and killing others.
Would you consider this man to be "swine"? I certainly would. I think I would give up on such an evil man. But thank God that He has a bit more love than I do. He saved this wicked man who was "breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord," changed his name, and had him write a third of the New Testament.