By Hunter Hines
Christian Action League
December 17, 2015
KERNERSVILLE – The American Atheists Organization is at it again. This year they have launched a series of billboards in North Carolina meant to disparage the religious significance of the Christmas season.
The billboards, which have been placed between Greensboro and Winston-Salem, show Santa mockingly laughing and saying, “Go ahead and skip church! Just be good for goodness sake. Happy Holidays!”
According to its website, The American Atheists Organization, founded in 1963, was born out of the “court case in 1959 by the Murray family which challenged prayer recitation in the public schools.”
The organization, now in its 51st year, vigorously promotes the myth of an absolute separation of church and state and works to promote atheism.
Last year, billboards by the group featured a little girl writing to Santa, “All I want for Christmas is to skip church. I’m too old for fairy tales.” This year Santa writes back, telling her it’s alright to stay out of church. Just be good for goodness sake.
David Silverman, president of American Atheists, says, “We want people to know that going to church has absolutely nothing to do with being a good person. The things that are most important during the holiday season – spending time with loved ones, charity, and being merry – have nothing to do with religion.”
American Atheists say they want to reach the millions of people who attend church, but may have doubts about their faith.
Nick Fish, national program director for American Atheists, says that folks who are on the fence about their religion can take the first big step by leaving the church. “There are tens of millions of atheists in this country. We’re everywhere. And we don’t need church or gods to tell us how to be good people,” says Fish.
According to the Christian Post, Candace Cameron Bure, who is often outspoken about her Christian faith, put a positive spin on the billboards, when the matter was brought up for discussion on a recent showing of the popular ABC television talk show, “The View.”
When Joy Behar, along with other panel members on the program featuring Bure, Raven Symone, Paula Faris and Sunny Hostin, asked Bure if the billboards offended her, Bure said she was happy for the opportunity the situation presented to share the good news of the Gospel.
Bure proceeded to tell her fellow panelists that the Gospel is not simply about being good because no one can meet God’s standard for being good. “God says if you’ve disobeyed one commandment…you’ve disobeyed all of them. So, if God’s standard is different by which he judges the world, then that’s where the argument of only ‘being a good person’ leads to the Gospel,” said Bure.
By the Gospel, Bure was referring to God coming to earth in the person of Jesus Christ to save and reconcile people who are sinners and granting them the free gift of eternal life.
Dr. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League, also said he that believed that the billboards can be a springboard for presenting Christ to people. But he added that he found the campaign to be intellectually dishonest and somewhat tragically humorous in its inconsistencies.
“Trying to separate Christmas from Christ’s birth is like an attempt to separate fire from smoke and then saying the two have nothing to do with each other. You could not possibly have one without the other,” said Dr. Creech. “Trying to separate good works from religion is very much the same principle.”
“The billboard depicts Santa Claus, also known as St. Nick, who was St. Nicolas of Bari, the great Christian man who lived during the fourth century. He became the archbishop of Myra and was renowned for his magnificent generosity. You can’t separate Santa from St. Nicholas. You can’t separate St. Nicholas from the Christian faith or his incredible charity from Christmas, which people around the world have associated for centuries. St. Nick’s exemplary Christian life, sacrificial giving, love, goodwill, and the joy of the season celebrated by family and friends is all deeply rooted in the magnificent gift of God’s Son, Jesus Christ,” said Dr. Creech. “To say otherwise is just dishonest.”
“And what do they mean by suggesting one can be good without religion?” asked Dr. Creech. “Atheists are most disingenuous on this point. Where do they get their morality? They have no morality of their own without piggybacking on religion, more specifically the Christian faith, to have any compass or understanding of what is good. They have to borrow from religion. What is more, one would have to be nothing more than an abject fool to read the daily newspapers and come away with the conclusion that humanity is inherently good,” he said.
“Moreover, the billboards,” said Dr. Creech, “wish everyone ‘Happy Holidays!’” In wishing everyone Happy Holidays you’re encouraging them to enjoy the holy days and then urging them not to go to church, he continued. “That’s terribly inconsistent. It would be laughable if it weren’t so tragic,” he said.
The signs also appear in Colorado Springs and will continue through the month of December.