"Spreading the Anti-Gospel"
Comedian Bill Maher (Politically Incorrect) is somewhat of an "anti-evangelist." The definition of "evangelist" is "proclaimer of good news" so I think "anti-evangelist" is a good word for him. He spreads the "anti-gospel. That is not my claim for him. That is what he says of himself.
He also says, "If there was just one topic I could talk about for the rest of my career, I would pick religion," Maher says, leaning back in his desk chair as if he's settling in for a long yarn. "It's the one that makes me angriest, I think, and it's the one that's least discussed, in my opinion."
He has mocked Sen. Joseph Lieberman for strictly observing the Jewish Sabbath. He suggests that the root of the problems with gays is all from the Bible, from religion: "If we didn't have religion, there wouldn't be this massive problem with gay people."
He says, "I'm not an atheist, but, if I learned at the moment of my death or before, somehow, that there is no God, it's not like I'd be blown away by it."
"Professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures. Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. (Romans 1:22-25)
Mayer: "How did we get here? I don't know. What will happen when you die? I don't know. Is there a heaven? I don't know," he says, repeating his litany of disbelief"
"And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment." (Hebrews 9:27)
Maher grew up Roman Catholic but stopped attending at about age 13. He uses words like "poison" and "stupid" to describe his early religious indoctrination. Being a comedian, he has many "funny" things to say about faith and people who have it. "I believed all this stuff when I was young. I believed there was a virgin birth, I believed a man lived inside of a whale, and I believed that the Earth was 5,000 years old. But then something very important happened to me -- I graduated sixth grade."
"For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." (1 Corinthians 1:18)
Mayer: "So many of these born-agains, these evangelicals, when you hear them speaking, no matter what the question is, they can't leave Jesus out of it for two seconds. It's OK when you're a child. Children have an imaginary friend. When you get to be an adult, no more imaginary friends. But Jesus is their imaginary friend. Everywhere they go, everything they do, Jesus is along. Oh, Christ."
"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:19-20).
Mayer: "Morality is mostly the Golden Rule, treating other people the way you would like other people to treat you. I mean, the teachings of Jesus are a great moral guide. Jesus is one of the greatest role models I can think of."
"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God." (John 3:16-21)
By Jon W. Quinn
From Expository Files 11.11; November 2004