Atheists' Camp Quest ... for God?


According to some atheists, Christianity is for the ignorant and the weak. It's anti-intellectual. It's anti-reason. It's for stupid people who've been brainwashed to believe in a "sky god" and not ask questions. We're mired in ignorance and darkness. Satan really is the original public relations master of spin, isn't he? Since I became a Christian about 13 years ago, I found the opposite to be true. When I first read the Bible all the way through or even thought about defending my faith, I knew I had my work cut out for me.

Although I grew up going to church, I wasn't saved. I attended vacation Bible school, where I memorized Scripture and sang catchy songs about Jesus Christ. I wasn't saved. But my unbelief wasn't an impediment for God. As the Apostle Paul said in Ephesians, God chose me "before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved" (Ephesians 1:4-6). Amen!

I briefly forgot about God's elect and predestination when I read about a summer camp for children from atheist families. The word "tragic" came to mind. Camp Quest Northwest in Seattle rents the grounds from a Christian camp, and they cover up "Lord" or "God" on signs and replace them with words like "Flying Spaghetti Monster." Chuck Wolber, one of the camp's founders, said they encourage kids to attend church.

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"The best way to become an atheist is to study the Bible," he said, "and I definitely recommend the kids do that." Isn't he clever? Wolber and the rest fancy themselves "freethinkers." Atheist Matt Garry, father of a boy at the camp, said it's important to teach his children "about the scientific method; if something is provable, you have a hypothesis and you theorize, find a solution for it."

Garry implies that Christians oppose the scientific method. I'll bet that's news to believing scientists. Can we assume Garry came to his unbelief through the scientific method, that he put forth a hypothesis that God doesn't exist, tested his theory, and proved it?

A 9-year-old girl named Elle said she doesn't believe in God, "but if he were to come down and do something really amazing, I would be able to accept that he exists."

Ah, signs and wonders! As if this astonishingly complex, diverse, and beautiful world we inhabit isn't sign-and-wonder enough. That the world and every creature in it came into being by impersonal and unordered chaos is logical to these "scientific" atheists, despite the enormous odds against it. We, who infer design in creation, and therefore, a Designer, are illogical.

Among those "freethinkers" at Camp Quest Northwest might be the elect, including young Elle. Let's pray that God will "do something really amazing" and raise her from spiritual death to life.

La Shawn Barber
La Shawn Barber

La Shawn writes about culture, faith, and politics. Her work has appeared in the Christian Research Journal, Christianity Today, the Washington Examiner, and other publications


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