EJ Hill: The Other Side of Hillside
EJ Hill: The Other Side of Hillside is not what you think…
What if “Christians” (among them staunch Calvinists – EJ Hill) who have always thought and believed they were treading the right path on the right side of the hill suddenly realized they were actually treading the wrong path on the wrong side of the hill?
Should we be shocked when someone suddenly comes out of his/her spiritual closet and announces with bravado, “I have turned my back on the God of the Bible and am now following a new, more enlightened god called ATHEISM” or as EJ Hill recently put it, “The Alpha and Omega of My Exodus from Christianity – The True Story of a Christian Theologian’s Exodus from Evangelical Christianity to Atheism”?
What if these so-called Christians have always been atheists but refused all along to face the music and candidly admit that they have always been anti-God under the cloak of “Christian” piousness called CALVINISM?
To answer these questions we first need to put on our Berean shoes to see what the God of the Bible has to say about these so-called ex-Christians (ex-Calvinists) who have become full-blown atheists.
EJ Hill’s conversion was to Christianity, not Christ
My name is E.J. Hill. I converted to Christianity on the 6th of November 1993, at the age of 16. (Emphasis added).
The Bible never says that sinners should convert to Christianity. Yet, this is what EJ Hill claims to have done when he became a “Christian.”
A conversion to Christianity means absolutely nothing. Constantine who converted to Christianity and continued to offer sacrifices in pagan temples was a type of Antichrist who put an end to the persecution of Christians and made Christianity the official state religion of Rome. Since then the apostasy he set in motion has escalated exponentially to this day. Atheists are clearly anti-Christ despite their denial that God exists.
The claim that you have converted to Christianity begs the questions – to what brand of Christianity? There are so many heretical brands of Christianity that most people will find it extremely difficult to identify Antichrist as a non-Christian when he eventually appears on the world political scene and lovingly accept him as a brother in Christ. That’s precisely what many so-called Christians had done when Constantine converted to Christianity.
EJ Hill’s had a form of godliness but denied the power thereof (2 Timothy 3:5)
They look like ducks, quack like ducks and even swim like ducks but are not even remotely related to ducks.
This is the most dangerous feature of those who claim they had once converted to Christianity. It provides them an opportunity to destroy Christianity from within.
When Thomas Merton could no longer resist the mystic appeal, he intended to turn his back on Christianity. Guess who advised him to remain a “Christian?” No! You’re wrong. It was not a concerned Christian but a Hindu swami named Dr. Bramachari.
He assured Merton that he could find the very same mysticism within the ranks of the Christian mystics. (Henri J M Nouwen: Contemplative Critic).
Dr. Bramachari seems to be far better informed than most Christians of Paul’s warning in 2 Corinthians and seems to know that Merton could do more damage within the ranks of Christianity if he remained there in stead of becoming a converted Buddhist or Hindu.
Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us. (1 John 2:18-19).
IS THEIR DECEPTION THE RESULT OF THEIR OWN DOING OR GOD’S PROVIDENCE?
Could it be that EJ Hill’s statement –
My deconversion came as a shock to most of my family and friends.
My wife’s first response was to threaten divorce. My mother burst into tears. My brother, in all his wisdom, just silently pondered this new turn of events. I have yet to witness my father’s.
Yet, I find comfort in the knowledge, that I am not alone. Apparently Christians are dropping like flies. (Emphasis added).
is an acknowledgment that Beelzebub, the god of the flies, was instrumental in his conversion to Christianity (not Christ) and his subsequent deconversion to Atheism?
I have always maintained that Calvinism is not only one of the most dangerous heretical anti-Christian religions on the planet but also a veritable cesspool and breeding ground for protagonists who have given their lives to promote their serpentine apostasy. (Matthew 23:33). The irony is that God Himself had given them the mandate to continue and relish in their apostasy. (2 Thessalonians 2:7-12).
Why? Whoever shuns God’s way of salvation and replaces it with his own soteriology (aka Calvinism) is a perfect candidate for God’s terrifying indictment in 2 Thessalonians 2:7-12. Anyone who does not tremble at his word may have already waded so far down the path of apostasy that a turning point may seem an impossibility. Nevertheless, God who is merciful and full of compassion pleads with the apostates and begs them to:-
“Return, thou backsliding [apostate], saith the LORD; and I will not cause mine anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the LORD, and I will not keep anger for ever. Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the LORD thy God, . . . saith the LORD.” (Jeremiah 3:12-13).
EJ Hill deals with several questions he thinks his regular blog readers may want to ask him.
Where did you go wrong?
The primary mistake I made, was to adopt Christianity at the age of sixteen, without questioning the authority of it’s Scriptures.
IF you are going to live your life by some standard, and even more importantly, judge others by that standard, you better make sure it is infallible.
EJ Hill admits that the springboard which launched his Christianity (not his salvation) was false and highly questionable. I agree, because a lost and destitute orphan cannot adopt its parents or even their domestic rules and regulations in order to become their adopted child. The parents adopt the orphan. Adoption is an act of love, compassion and pity which only the parents are able to express, for it is the lost and destitute orphan who desperately needs love, compassion ad pity and not the parents.
Even so we, when we were children , were in bondage under the elements of the world [lost and destitute orphans]: But when the fulness of the time was come, God [who had compassion and pity on the destitute and the lost] sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. (Galatians 4:3-5).
The adoption unto son-ship is something God initiated by sending his Son, made of a woman, made under the curse of the law to redeem those who were/are under the curse of the law. The only thing God requires is faith – pure and simple faith or trust in his Son Jesus Christ to bestow His divinely ordained son-ship on lost and destitute orphans.
EJ Hilll ought to know that salvation (son-ship) is never granted by merely adopting Christianity. Salvation is not a choice between a huge variety of religions, including Christianity, and a decision to adopt one of them. Salvation, plain and simple, concerns the conviction of sins and transgressions (your lostness) and your desperate need of a Saviour, and only the Holy Spirit of God is able to do that.
And when he [the Holy Spirit] is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged. (John 16:8-11).
No one can be saved unless they realize – under the conviction of the Holy Spirit – that they are lost (on their way to hell). That’s why Jesus said:-
And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. (Luke 5:31).
EJ Hill says: “IF you are going to live your life by some standard, and even more importantly, judge others by that standard, you better make sure it is infallible.” Here again he completely misses the boat. Christianity is not an attempt to live by some standard or to judge others by that standard. Christians are supposed to judge others’ doctrines and teaching and not the individuals themselves.
Indeed, there are Christian standards (commandments) but they were not given as a kind of yardstick to determine whether we are living by them or not. God penned down his standards (commandments) to show that we all have sinned against Him and fall short of His awesome glory and holiness. In fact, his exceptionally high standards are signposts pointing us to Jesus and the undisputed necessity to receive Him as our Saviour. (Romans 3:23; Galatians 3:24-25).
Jesus Christ said, “. . . without Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5) which simply means that any attempt to live by his awesomely high standards – without Him living it out in and through his sons and daughters – are futile and nothing else than filthy, rotten [menstrual] rags (Galatians 2:20; Isaiah 64:6).
The next question he deals with is:
Why default to Atheism and not Deism?
At this point in my life, I simply have no good reason, sufficient philosophical or scientific evidence, to believe in the existence of ANY god.
By process of elimination, I have [over the past twenty odd years] managed to eliminate the alleged authority [holy books], and therefore the validity, of Judaism, Christianity [including the Jehovah’s Witnesses and Roman Catholicism], Islam, Mormonism, etc. – and can, with a fair amount of certainty say, that IF there is a God – and I am NOT saying there is – it is neither, Allah, nor Yahweh/Jehovah.
He who denies the existence of God is a fool (Psalm 14:1) and he who rejects the views on the existence of God of some of the most revered Atheists is even greater than a fool.
EJ Hill does not seem to deny there is a God. His convenient use of the word “if” exposes his doubts whether there is a God (note his use of a capitol “G”) and therefore he must contend that “if there is a God, it is neither Allah nor Yahweh/Jehovah.” What he says in effect, is the following, “If there is a God, it cannot be Allah or Yahweh/Jehovah but has to be any other god of your own choice.” So, as you can see he – like any other human being who was created to worship someone or something – chooses to worhip another god rather than Allah or Yahweh/Jeovah. Moreover, his deliberate effort to associate Yahweh/Jehovah with Allah speaks volumes.
Steven Hawking does not deny the existence of God, but he does think his model eliminates the need for a Creator.
The idea that space and time may form a closed surface without boundary . . . has profound implications for the role of God in the affairs of the universe . . . . So long as the universe had a beginning, we could suppose it had a creator. But if the universe is really completely self-contained, having no boundary or edge, it would have neither beginning nor end. What place, then, for a creator? (1)
There is no proof that the universe has neither beginning nor end. The only alternative is that it had a beginning and therefore it must have a Designer.
Richard Dawkins vacillates between a non-existent God and One that exists by conveniently making a silly statement like this.
1. One of the greatest challenges to the human intellect has been to explain how the complex, improbable appearance of design in the universe arises.
2. The natural temptation is to attribute the appearance of design to actual design itself.
3. The temptation is a false one because the designer hypothesis immediately raises the larger problem of who designed the designer.
4. The most ingenious and powerful explanation is Darwinian evolution by natural selection.
5. We don’t have an equivalent explanation for physics.
6. We should not give up the hope of a better explanation arising in physics, something as powerful as Darwinism is for biology.
Therefore, God almost certainly does not exist. (2)
William Lane Craig blasts Richard Dawkins’ inconsistent reasoning to smithereens with the slightest of efforts.
This argument is jarring because the atheistic conclusion that “Therefore, God almost certainly does not exist” seems to come suddenly out of left field. You don’t need to be a philosopher to realize that that conclusion doesn’t follow from the six previous statements.
Indeed, if we take these six statements as premises of an argument implying the conclusion “Therefore, God almost certainly does not exist,” then the argument is patently invalid. No logical rules of inference would permit you to draw this conclusion from the six premises.
A more charitable interpretation would be to take these six statements, not as premises, but as summary statements of six steps in Dawkins’ cumulative argument for his conclusion that God does not exist. But even on this charitable construal, the conclusion “Therefore, God almost certainly does not exist” does not follow from these six steps, even if we concede that each of them is true and justified. (3).
Most of the present day learned scholars on the historicity of Jesus Christ’s resurrection agree on:
- Jesus’ burial by Joseph of Arimathea,
- the discovery of Jesus’ empty tomb by some of his female followers,
- the post-mortem appearances of Jesus to various individuals and groups, and
- the original disciples’ coming sincerely to believe that God had raised Jesus from the dead despite their strong predisposition to the contrary are historical.
Even neutral scholars like Pinchas Lapide and Geza Vermes, two Jewish scholars, defend the historicity of these four facts. Vermes writes, “When every argument has been considered and weighed, the only conclusion acceptable to the historian must be that . . . the women who set out to pay their last respects to Jesus found to their consternation, not a body, but an empty tomb” (Jesus the Jew, p. 41).
Bart Ehrman, who claims to have been a Christian once, writes:
The resurrection of Jesus lies at the heart of Christian faith. Unfortunately, it also is a tradition about Jesus that historians have difficulty dealing with. As I said, there are a couple of things that we can say for certain about Jesus after his death. We can say with relative certainty, for example, that he was buried. I say with relative certainty because historians do have some questions about the traditions of Jesus’ burial. . . .
Some scholars have argued that it’s more plausible that in fact Jesus was placed in a common burial plot, which sometimes happened, or was, as many other crucified people, simply left to be eaten by scavenging animals (which also happened commonly for crucified persons in the Roman Empire). [Ehrman is clearly referring here to radical critics like John Dominic Crossan, whose skepticism about the historicity of the burial has been widely rejected . . . . Ehrman will now reject it, too.-WmLC] But the accounts are fairly unanimous in saying (the earliest accounts we have are unanimous in saying) that Jesus was in fact buried by this fellow, Joseph of Arimathea, and so it’s relatively reliable that that’s what happened.
We also have solid traditions to indicate that women found this tomb empty three days later. This is attested in all of our gospel sources, early and late, and so it appears to be a historical datum. As so I think we can say that after Jesus’ death, with some (probably with some) certainty, that he was buried, possibly by this fellow, Joseph of Arimathea, and that three days later he appeared not to have been in his tomb (Bart Ehrman, From Jesus to Constantine: A History of Early Christianity, Lecture 4: “Oral and Written Traditions about Jesus” [The Teaching Company, 2003].) (4).
William Lane Craig affirms that,
Perhaps the most objective evidence for the current lay of the land in New Testament scholarship concerning these four facts would be a bibliographical survey of the relevant literature. Such a survey has, in fact, been conducted by Gary Habermas (“Experience of the Risen Jesus: The Foundational Historical Issue in the Early Proclamation of the Resurrection,” Dialog 45 (2006): 288-97). In a survey of over 2,200 publications on the resurrection in English, French, and German since 1975, Habermas found that 75% of the scholars surveyed accepted the historicity of the discovery of Jesus’ empty tomb. Belief in the disciples’ experiencing post-mortem appearances of Jesus is virtually universal. (5).
Yet EJ Hill says:
“At this point in my life, I simply have no good reason, sufficient philosophical or scientific evidence, to believe in the existence of ANY god.” The only evidence he has is the very shaky testimony of a friend (enemy?) Jacques du Plessis, who played a leading role in his exodus from the miry clay of religion. His exodus, however, is not from the miry clay of religion but from the One who suffered and died for him on the cross.
CONCLUDING REMARKS ON EJ HillS
Many more things could be said about EJ Hill’s deconversion to Atheism but the most heartrending and saddest irony is that he quotes the God of the Bible – whom he believes is non- existent – to substantiate and defend his deconversion. It proves that you can use the Bible, inspired by a non-existent God, to validate just tabout every heresy imaginable. In the apology section of his article he wrote:
As the book of Proverbs confirms, “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death” (Pr. 14v12, 16v25) – intellectual death, social death, and sometimes even physical death.
Be that as it may, rest assured “I was blind, but now I see”
The irony is that he mentions all kinds of deaths (“intellectual death, social death and sometimes even physical death”) accept the death to which Solomon refers in this Proverb, which is eternal spiritual death (eternal separation from God).
If Jesus is the only Way to God the Father (John 14:6) then the way that appears to be right but in the end it leads to death, cannot be Jesus. It must be the way of someone or something else. It follows that all the other ways, including a false Christianity, are ways that seem to be right to those who have been deceived but in the end lead to eternal misery, punishment and agony in the lake of fire.
E J Hill says he was blind but now he sees. Jesus said:
And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth. (John 9:40-41).
I am not saddened by EJ Hill’s deconversion to Atheism because he never was a saved Christian in the first place. My concern is that he may never repent of his evil and receive Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour and Lord. Nevertheless, it is my most earnest plea that he may do so before it is too late.
See all articles on E.J.Hill here
(1) Stephen Hawking, A Brief History of Time (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), pp. 140-141
(2) Richard Dawkins, “The God Delusion,” pp 157-158.