The Atheist Bus Campaign is the first effort at mass marketing atheism in Britain. The sign was placed on more than 800 British buses with the slogan: “There is probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.”
When The Atheist Bus Campaign was organized, Richard Dawkins, the leading British atheist and author of The God Delusion predicted that Christians would be offended by the campaign. He said: “They have to take offense, it is the only weapons they’ve got. They’ve got no arguments.”
But, according to the article in The Christian Science Monitor, the response by most Christian leaders was not what the atheist community expected.
“Religious institutes, church pastors, and divinity school professors have not treated the ads with Old Testament wrath, but with a relatively open mind and even embrace of so important an issue,” the article said.
The article gives the reaction of several religious leaders in London:
“The campaign will be a good thing if it gets people to engage with the deepest questions of life,” says the Rev. Jenny Ellis, Spirituality and Discipleship Officer of Britain’s Methodist church.
“Many people simply never think about God or religion as a serious question, and if this prods them a little bit, then that’s great,” says the Rev. Stephen Wang, of the Westminster diocese of the Roman Catholic church.
The article also mentioned Karl Barth and his endorsement of Feuerbach’s book:
The Lutheran Karl Barth, a leading 20th-century European theologian, wrote the forward to the English language version of Ludwig Andreas von Feuerbach’s prominent atheist critique, “The Essence of Christianity.” Barth wasn’t worried about the atheism, says Herman Waetjen, professor emeritus of New Testament studies at the San Francisco Theological Seminary, because Barth felt Feuerbach exposed many fault lines, mistakes, social and collective projections, and other falsifications of Christianity that had arisen around the 19th-century church.
I agree with both Rev. Ellis and Rev. Wang: People in Britain are thinking and talking about God.
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary
Tags: Atheism, Atheists, God, Karl Barth