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Articles > Current Affairs February, 03, 2015

Why I’d thank Stephen Fry for branding God as evil and stupid

Rachel Megarry
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“You walk up to the pearly gates, and you are confronted by God. What will Stephen Fry say to him, her or it?” The simple question which sparked controversy as Fry completely and utterly annihilated the idea of an all-loving God. If you haven’t seen the snippet, check it out here.

So this video has been going a bit viral and atheists everywhere are looking smug. But do they really expect Christians to pipe down and brush off this blasphemy against their God? I could rant for hours on how if someone started saying Allah was stupid and selfish and evil, there would be an absolute uproar, but because an atheist is attacking the Christian God it is totally fine?

Photo by Marco Raaphorst

Photo by Marco Raaphorst

But that is not where I want to go with this post. As I watched Stephen Fry blame my God for everything wrong in this world I began to burn up. At first it was anger, and then fury at how anyone could have misunderstood God so intensely. I then began to cry. Why? Because this truth overwhelmed me – my God died for Stephen Fry too. God shed blood, for a man to call him stupid. He was whipped and cut, to be uttered selfish. He was crucified – pierced with rusty nails and a hammer- for a man who only has hate for him. Jesus died willingly, knowing that so many of the people he did it for would never trust in Him, would never accept His love, and would strive to convince others that He doesn’t even exist. To be honest, watching this video has only made me more in awe of what Jesus did on that cross.

Photo by Jerry Worster

Photo by Jerry Worster

I’m not claiming to have all the answers here, but I do know He is not to blame for bone cancer in children and flesh eating insects. If Stephen read his bible he’d know that these things are a result of the fall: when The Devil convinced man to disobey God. If anyone is to blame, it’s the devil.

I’m going to be honest here and say I don’t know why God didn’t just make sure that never happened. I don’t know why God does things the way He does, but the bible tells us His ways are higher than our human understanding, and from personal experience, I fully trust that.

Photo by Charles Clegg

Photo by Charles Clegg

So I’ll do my very best to stand up and say that He is not stupid, or selfish, or evil. What kind of stupid creates our oceans and our eyes? What kind of selfish gives up everything and endures unnecessary and excruciating pain for those who hate Him? What kind of evil forgives those who don’t deserve to be forgiven, who ignore Him and break His heart?

As I close, I’d like to thank Stephen Fry. His intention was to accuse and stir up doubt and to offend. But his anger against my God has only reminded me of all the reasons why I love God- He has made me free, by sacrificing Himself in my place; He loves me and every human being, no matter how much we mess up, with an unfathomable love; and He is unfailingly good- He won’t fail us nor ever leave us.

I leave with this: Deuteronomy 31v6

“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For The Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”

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  1. Jodie Knowles-baker

    I disagree completely. The Fall was a result of the Devil deciding that he would rather not serve and unjust Father due to the fact that God killed an Angel for falling in love. God wants full devotion and loving another means that not the whole of your devotion is to God. An angel did this and God killed him for it. Lucifer, the Morningstar who was God’s highest servant decided that God’s actions were unjust and that people and angels should have free will to love and so as they please.

    Therefore God created Hell and banished Lucifer to rule over Hell instead of serve in heaven. Then God turned to the Angels and asked them who they wished to join, a third chose God, a third chose Lucifer and a third were undecided so God sent the undecided and Lucifer’s followers to live in Hell and live with free will. A third of the Angels stayed in heaven to devote themselves to serving God.

    The Devil isn’t the ‘bad guy’. he’s the representation of Free Will and anyone who exercises Free Will (and doesn’t follow ‘God’s word’ to the letter shall also go there to continue living with freedom of choice)

    THAT is the Original Fall.

    You say you’ve cried at how people misunderstand your God. I have cried at how people misunderstand the universe and science. I’ve cried out of sadness and desperation whilst listening to blindly religious people talking about how God did everything good to them. people who are scared to accept that there are things that science cannot explain without having to explain it away with a metaphysical entity that only exists to satisfy not yet existent explanations.

    You can’t win against someone with the religious mentality no matter how much science you throw at them purely because they can make stuff up. They can say ‘God did it’ or ‘Because God wanted to/has a plan’ to everything. If a religious person was in a car crash and their passenger lived, they would say that God saved them, if their passenger died they’d say either: God decided it is their time to go and it is all part of his greater plan for them or blame Lucifer. You can’t possibly win if you’re skeptical.

    So though I understand this argument is passionate, I cannot accept it. I am filled with scientific curiosity and an understanding of other cultures and religions and their beliefs. I am happy in myself and don’t need the threat of divine justice to be a good person. I am willing to accept that there are things that i cannot yet explain or comprehend and that’s okay, because that’s how progress happens. Please try to understand this yourself.

  2. Michael Goldsmith

    Bone cancer in children is a result of the Fall, that’s a convenient way of explaining it away. Apart from the fact that it is unjust to condemn innocent children for the mistakes made by Adam and Eve…

    The Fall is a perfect example of Stephen’s point in the first place. The fact God deliberately created the tree of knowledge and then forbade Adam and Eve to taste it is yet more proof that God is self-aggrandizing and petty. Why even create the possible means for man’s ruin if you love him so much…? Why not let him live in peace in the paradise you created?

    As a test of faith – which is another way of demanding man to grovel at God’s feet in thankfulness, which Stephen points out is simply vain and unnecessary on God’s part.

  3. rory

    Well the author believes in the fucking devil… That’s not at all scary… If she takes that literally I dread to think what else she subscribes to. What about the dragon in revelations? Rawr

  4. Daniel Adebote

    Good job on this article. Our “Good” Lord will surely reward you

  5. Megan Joss

    Hey, It was a good article but I really don’t think he intended to ‘stir up doubt and offend’. He was just giving his point of view. I believe that everyone is entitled to voice their own opinion, which is why you are also entitled to yours. I just don’t think it’s right to accuse Stephen Fry of stirring up trouble, when the views he expressed were just that; his own personal views.

  6. Sharda Schiefelbein

    Thanks For Sharing

  7. Humza Asad

    Completely disagree with Stephen on this one. Without God there is no absolutist conception of morality. Everything becomes relative to your society culture etc. So to then attack God in a way that is so rhetorically fuelled with absolutist moral emotion is a logical fallacy.

  8. Jay Hands

    I find that Stephen fry has raised some important issues and a well rounded, bold, relevant answer. There are many issues with people that are seen with him expressing an opinion like that, however this has caused some view’s of which I don`t agree with and some that I agree strongly. The fact that he chooses not to believe in got or agree with him is a whole another view to atheism other then the most common demand of evidence. So in total i think that this is a good and i would not go so far to thank him however he has brought a good and relevant opinion to the table.

  9. Abbie

    Pathetic, you can’t blame god for those things, if there was a missing child that became found none of you would sing his praises, but as soon as something goes wrong you need to blame someone. Why are children starving? Because of free will, the money that is given to those third world countries is kept by the government so no one gets a any help because of the greediness in the world. There is enough money in the world for everyone to live comfortably but people want more and more. So you have rich people and poor people

  10. Ashley

    I think this post has entirely missed the point of Mr Fry’s assertions which is hardly surprising when one considers that it demonstrates an astounding lack of research. Firstly, if you had merely scratched the surface of Islamic scriptures, you would know that Allah and “God” are at the most fundamental level at least, the same thing. Both are monotheist projections of a single, omnipotent, omniscient and all-loving deity. Thus, when he is objecting to the existence of a Christian’s conception of God, he is simultaneously dismissing the notion of Allah by definition. Secondly, I think you will find that Mr Fry has “read his bible”, several times in fact. This is far more than the average Christian can confess to have read it. It is precisely because of his meticulous examination of the scripture and his inquisitive nature that he has chosen to challenge the very bedrock of theism. Finally, your sentiments are littered with inconsistency and double-standard. Would your all-forgiving God, and indeed self, not pity a man who is, as you would put it, unenlightened? Does the Bible and indeed Jesus’s word not command Christians to guide the weak through the valley of darkness? Whether the origins of evil are the creation of man or God, would it not have been reasonable for an all-knowing God to have assumed that there would be doubt amongst the more perceptive of his creations, given that they were endowed with a free will? Is it not entirely contrary to the fundamental spirit of Christianity to be incensed by a person who is plagued with doubt and in need of ecclesiastical guidance? That would be undermining the very purpose of Jesus’s incarnation and the dissemination of the word of God and the proselytism of the unwashed by St Paul et al that followed. To challenge the very purpose of Jesus’s existence is a dangerous path for a true Christian to venture down.

  11. Megan Ferdinand

    I have never believed in God and never will for the simple facts that science has proved how this planet came about and also, it’s pretty obvious that he isn’t real. If there is a God, isn’t he/she supposed to be just and good? Well then why do good people die everyday? Because unfortunately it’s life and there are good bits and shit bits. If there was a just, good God, then surely, he wouldn’t include the shit bits in his creation of the world. Also, we know that the Earth isn’t the only place in the universe, so for example, did God create the whole universe? If so, where are all the other humans, why can’t we live on Mars? Because of science!! It all leads back to science. I understand that people want to believe that there is some great bloke in the sky who will welcome us into Heaven, but i don’t understand how they actually believe it. And, let’s be honest, does anyone remember living before they were born? No. So if you don’t remember anything before, what makes you think there will be anything after?

  12. Jamie

    How could God have created this beautiful planet? I believe that was basic science, such as…I don’t know…the Big Bang! He didn’t create it, he’s not real. I believe the ideals behind religion are good, I went to church for the first 12 years of my life, I understand the good that can come from religion. But when it dictates how modern society is operated? When it doesn’t allow people to make their own choices? As long as it doesn’t physically cause pain to others around them, then people should be able to do whatever they want, without prejudice. If we should all love thy neighbour then why don’t people love the gays? Or the transsexuals? Or the prostitutes? Or anyone that tries to make their own life choices? As I said, religion is a good idea but the need to arrange one’s entire life around it and scolding others for doing it differently isn’t. We should control religion, not the other way around.

  13. anony

    What I said goes to all the ones who said they are atheist but blames God for things that are happening. I am not saying he doesn’t have a right to an opinion but the fact that men’s evil doing is being ignored makes everyone blind as to what is happening in this world. God did not make Stephen gay. He is created as a man but has his free will to decide to be gay as that’s what he feels he is. Punishing? You need to understand that God does not punish gay, he love all of us equally. But if a person have a Sexual relation with the same sex then that is wrong. And I’m not saying that it’s any different to a Christian who have sex before marriage or cheated on a wife or husband or had orgy. Those are no different from same sex having sex. Who you want to be is not a sin but what you do that you know is morally wrong IS a sin. Just imagine a country without a president Or a law. Without it people will do whatever they will please, there Will be no order in this world it’s all just war. I’m a Christian And I’m not saying I’m perfect I used to be like you and I definitely can’t imagine life without God cause life with God means humans get to do what they do now. Children, women and men will kill. Life will not have its value

  14. Aaron Carter

    I am an atheist…
    1) God did not die for you on the cross, His son Jesus did.
    2) According to your Bible, God created all things, which would include the Devil.

    • Michael Goldsmith

      To be fair, on the first point Christians believe in the holy trinity i.e. three in one. God is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. So when the author writes that He died on the Cross it is correct in terms of theology.

    • Chanel

      I can’t stand atheist that comment without reading the bible, it really frustrates me. I know there’s a God and you know what, I feel sorry for Stephen Fry when he does walk up to the gates of heaven, because he WILL NOT say that to God, he will be too scared and shocked to see that God does exist. Maaan the experiences i’ve had with God is crazy, so crazy that NO-ONE, especially another HUMAN BEING that God created can convince me that there isn’t a God. If you had a personal experience with an alien, but everyone told you it wasn’t true….are you really going to deny your experience just because others haven’t experienced and saw what you have? No you would stand your ground and say forget everyone else, I know what I saw and experienced! I know there’s a God and I just pray that everyone experiences him the way me and many others who talk about our personal experiences with him, before it’s too late!

    • Anonymous

      1. God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are all the Godhead. Would you sacrifice your own child for people who hate you?

      2. The devil was in fact a fallen angel. He wanted to rebel against God and was then banished from heaven, thus wanting to stir up more evil in us.

  15. Completely agree .

  16. Gabriel

    Personally I think religion is a good thing as it gives people something to hold onto and sets good morale values. However he hasn’t offended ‘your’ God as he never mentioned any religion and was just stating his views , freedom of speech allows him to state them views and if that offends then so be it

  17. Maryam

    Well, I am not a Christian but am a Muslim. I disagree with this argument because I think God is all loving.5he only reason why there are people suffering is so that they know the worst so they can really theu can really thank God for when they’re problems get solved and when they are in need. Also, God has put everyone in different situations, every individual will face something. Its basically like a test from God to to see if you believe in him and pray to him when you’re in need. Also, there has to be a certain group ofpeople with better than you have, bbecause if they don’t have better, you will never get the drive to gain better. I have a lot more to say but its just not coming to my minds right now.

  18. Rachael Pearce

    As an atheist, I don’t believe in God and I understand that everyone will have their different views about this, but just because atheists don’t believe, it doesn’t mean they should be ridiculing Christians or any type of religion because of their beliefs and faith. I think it is nice that Christians have something to believe in but I could never feel like there is someone watching over me my whole life waiting to judge me when I died.

  19. Emma Bramble

    Stephen didn’t give his opinion to cause doubt, mistrust etc. He gave it because, much like any Christian would, he wanted to express himself. I admire how you can follow your religion but Stephen has his own, and since yours is a theory and so is his, you can’t state what you say so blatantly and expect Atheists to keep how they feel to themselves. That’s just hypocritical.

  20. Danielle

    I agree, I believe the Bible and that that Jesus sacrificed his life for the good of others, to save the sins of the people before us because of the original sin. But its also very easy to see why people can’t believe this because the Bible is very explicit and in some places contradictory. So I don’t think the article was made to stir things up, everyone is entitled to there own view that’s why God gave us free will, free choice, to give us the choice to believe in him or not, so he knows that humanities feelings to him and true.

  21. Manna Shamshiri

    I just puked. You are completely brainwashed and quite probably a white middle-class male/female with clothes on your back and a roof over your head and food in the fridge. Those who have that only amount to in fact only 20% of the world. Ask a Syrian mother how grateful she is to Jesus, ask a starving Ethiopian child how much he is glad Jesus died for her to shrivel up and die because of lack of water??? WAKE UP. Religion and in particular CofE and Catholic Institutions are money-grabbing soul-sucking BUSINESSES. You ought to do your research… You know if we sold the Pope’s Papal Cross we could feed the entire world for a day? You know you have to PAY to visit some churches? What’s the concept of paying a tithing for church (to ensure your getting into heaven) all about??? Even if God was real, which she is blatantly not, I think she’d be outraged with how corrupt the institution has become. Please research the Problem of Evil and educate your ignorant mind. I only hope you can wake up and see one day how evil the Church is within itself, and how we should be working together as human beings to end the suffering instead of praise it and paste it on a “higher being” who has a “plan we cannot understand” and thus close our eyes to the suffering of humanity. We live in the 21st century, stop holding on to such ridiculous fables. For everyone’s sake. Move on.

  22. Sophie Partridge

    I completely agree with Mr Fry…

    • Rebekah Regan

      Me too I’d like to say the exact same thing to this god and that’s my honest opinion

  23. William Philpot

    This annoys me. I am atheist and I truly dislike having religion forced upon me, or people saying their God helped me. I don’t actually give a sh*t. I don’t believe in your Gods, religions, whatever.

    I agree with Stephen Fry. If there is a God, it is cruel, all the tales of the old testament are brutal, barbaric and backward. I don’t think he was meaning to offend. That annoys me too. I am not doing this to stir up some opinion, you can love your God, say as you please, I am just expressing my own opinion. This doesn’t make me a horrific person or a troublemaker. I help in my local community, volunteer and try to be a good person. Just because you can’t accept atheists poking gaping holes in your scripture you go on an attack on them…

    We should really all calm down, and accept everyone has a different opinion and GET ON WITH IT!

  24. Lyn Mcquade

    I feel this is like a public attack on the christian community. I understand we each are allowed to give our own opinions and i can even agree that in points of many peoples life’s his opinion can relate to some people but i think Mr Fry is using God as something/ someone to blame all the bad things that happen in the world when in fact their are many different reasons people are starving everyday in the worst poverty stricken countries, why people are dying from illnesses which are easily treatable in many countries and the occurrence of natural disasters causing many to flee there homes and life’s. I believe blaming god is a cowardly way out of facing and trying to fix a problem.

  25. Dan Holden

    I don’t claim to know whether Mr Fry was right in his assertions nor if the onslaught of responses to his beliefs are justified or not. That being said, whilst I don’t necessarily agree with some of the statements Mr Fry used during his interview, I do not object against him from voicing them; as is it not his right to speak his mind? I personally hold a deep seeded belief in God and am a self admitted Christian in an area that views such claims as being synonymous with idiocy, but I still take their opinions as I believe they are entitled to speak their minds freely. I try to live my life in a way that I think would please Him and give credence to my existence as a whole, which is why I will never dismiss another’s opinion if it diverges from my own as in a way it is simply another avenue through which God interacts with me and shapes my life.
    Not sure if this was in any way applicable, just felt like I should chip in a little.

  26. Grace Gibbons

    WOW! Amazing article.. I guarantee God is doing great things in your life for the blessing you are putting in to other peoples lives.

  27. Leanne

    Well said, this has really encouraged me to keep strengthening my faith in god and its human nature everyone wants to find someone to blame especially scientists because they want evidence to prove everything little thing. But the evidence of God has not been understood properly or been credited for its worth by scientists hence why there are alot of atheists in this world. All we can do is continue to spread the word and keep strong in our faith, I understand why steven frys comment upset you but you have to remember everyone has their own opinion we are all humans (we misunderstand, make mistakes) and we all have our own choice as to whether to follow someones opinion or not. It is in God’s hands. God Bless

  28. anony

    if God demands then we should not have the choice to follow him or not we all should be doing what we’re told and demanded to. People will always try to find a way to blame God but will never find a way for solutions. A heart full of hate and anger will always see hate and anger.

  29. anony

    It just shows that you don’t have to be old to be sick or unhealthy to be sick. As sad as it sounds we all are prone to any sickness. And shows how precious our lives are. Please do show where in the bible that says cancer is a result of fall and God condemning children through cancer. Have God ever demanded you of anything? If you read the bible God have always loved children

  30. anony

    the bible never said anything about God hating gays and punishing them. The Only way I could understand why some Christians are so against gay people is because in the bible it clearly says that God created women for men not same sex. I have nothing against gay people, in fact I love them and I have family members that are gay. Like what I said it’s the doing behind that what makes it a sin and I will repeat myself that it’s no different to any other sin. God have always talked about love and loving your neighbors. We all are a sinner including me. And because of love for us that his son jesus was sacrificed. To sacrifice one life for the many is a huge thing. God never promised for the bad things to go away but he did promise that he will help us go through it and come out to become a better person. There is no way I could go on with my life without God, without him I would just keep doing what I use to do when I’m hurting or in pain or suffering which is to drown myself with alcohol and drugs and all. It’s a temporary way to forget all the pain but when all those stuff wears out pain comes back. But with God I know that I will go through pain but the focus leads away from what I’m about to go through but what I will become after all the trials. Stronger and better. God is not about the religion but relationship and building us to become a better person. He knows we are capable of more but because we easily get blinded by this world there are times that we don’t see it. Jesus came down so he can experience what we go through in life. So we can have some to talk to who understand us. He’s like a friend who will listen and sit beside you, a parent who says I’ve been through what you’re going through and it’s true. It maybe in a different way but older people have experienced what young people have, they were young ones and that is why the older you get the wiser you become. He is like a coach who will push you so much that you just want to give up but he knows you are capable of more and when you get to that finish line he is there to catch you when you fall. It doesn’t matter if you’re not first as long as you tried your very best. He is there for you. God is love who gave us the free will so he doesn’t have to control us like robots. We can decide and know what is good and bad. He gifted us with talents to use for good. If you’re a scientist use it to find a cure for cancer or any sickness. If you’re an architect use it to build houses for the homeless. If you’re an amazing cook give some of your time to feed the hungry. God taught us to love and care for others, you may not believe in him you know in your heart it’s the good thing to do. Why there are sickness? Nobody knows only God knows. If we have an amazing talent or knowledge use it to find a solution. The blame game won’t fix any problem but will cause an uproar.

    • William Philpot

      Do you know anything about the Bible?! It clearly says that a man may not lie with another man as one lies with a woman. This is of course dated and stupid. All sexual orientations should be accepted. It is a personal choice. You are simply taking things out of context, and your arguments are all poorly constructed.

  31. anon

    In order to actually be calling God those things, Stephen Fry would have to acknowledge his existence which he clearly doesn’t and nor do I. It was a “what if” question, and if there is a God then I will follow Stephen Fry’s lead in questioning him about this world we live in. I am a girl of science, not faith. I believe in the big bang and evolution, not creation. I think Stephen Fry, as a gay man, has more right than any to be angry with the idea of a God that could make him gay and then punish him for it. Why would he want to go and sit side by side with that? Religion is the root of most of what is wrong with today’s world. Imagine a world where it didn’t exist. A world where people didn’t kill others simply because they believe in a different version of the same thing.

    And if I’m wrong, well then that makes this world even sadder than what it is already.

  32. anony

    An atheist who does not believe in God’s existence should not blame God. Hence “not believing”. You cannot blame someone that does not exist. Blaming a God that you believe does not exist is acknowledging and being aware of his existence and it definitely goes against your thoughts or believe that God does not exist. Do not blame God for anything if you believe he does not exist cause it makes you aware that there IS God and he is to blame of everything. If you don’t believe in his existence don’t blame him. But it’s good to know that even atheist talks about God. It may be in a bad way which I strongly disagree but it makes God known to people. The more atheist talks about God the more his existence is known to people and that he cannot be denied.

  33. anony

    People will always find someone to blame on.
    People will take advantage of things and will never appreciate anything unless it has taken away from them.
    Blaming God on cancer but not addressing on how evil people are? wars caused by humans have taken more lives than cancer. People who are corrupt, who kill, rape, people trafficking. Life will not be better without God, it will be worse and so bad in the hands of human. There are more deaths caused by humans than deaths caused by cancer or sickness. God has never done evil to people, it’s people that is evil And that continues to do evil to people.

  34. tern

    How dared Stephen Fry help to create the Blackadder 2 episode that blamed the victim for the undeserved suffering of school bullying, by linking joke villainous character to the receiving, not the perpetrating, of misery in children? It’s not right. Why should I respect capricious mean-minded stupid comedy that targets children for such injustice and pain for attributes not their fault, in real schools after the episode’s every broadcast? What’s that about? You could easily have created a world where this did not exist.

  35. Jordan Cobain

    he has a point i guess

  36. Vincent Koon

    I’m born into a christian family (but secular/agnostic atheist myself) but as soon as I heard Stephen Fry’s arguments I knew his interpretation of the christian faith is really flawed, albeit the fact that my reasons for not accepting the faith is somewhat similar. Anyway Rachael, I really admire your faith have that faith and the courage to say what you have; I hope you keep that passion burning in you, and may God bless you (if he truly exists).

  37. Victoria Baijal

    Hi Rachel,
    I think this is an excellent article. So true! Science and God do mix.
    Here’s another well thought out reply to Mr Fry’s comments –
    http://www.christiantoday.com/article/stephen.fry.says.god.is.capricious.mean.minded.stupid.but.lets.not.get.angry/47174.htm

  38. Spencer Dzingiso

    GOD is love, end of story. Let’s leave religion out of our impartial choices that we deem practical which religion says otherwise.

  39. Ayaz

    Hi, You said with regards to Allah it would be a different story and that there would be an uproar. Although you did not choose to expand upon this argument as identified in the article, I would just like to point out that Islam is the last Abrahamic faith superseding both Christianity and Judaism, therefore the God fry is referring to is the same God and therefore Muslims are equally offended by such disgusting and misconceived statements for Allah is the Arabic for God. Also, for the sake of clarity if you are not familiar with this, Jesus is a highly respected prophet in Islam, however we do not believe he was crucified rather he was raised to heaven and his likeness of his face was placed on Another culprit. Also Islam does not believe he is the son of God rather this is seen to be a fabricated belief by corrupt leaders of the time attempting to divert people from the oneness of God, and therefore God affirms the monotheistic faith revealed to Abraham through Islam. After Jesus was raised to the heavens, the teachings he preached which were an affirmation of that which was revealed to Moses (Jesus in his life never claimed to be a son of God), were becoming distorted by those who opposed Jesus and his message, especially the bible that had become altered by the corrupt rulers who had attempted to crucify Jesus. The bible incidentally still alludes to the coming of a final prophet who would be born in Arabia (I can’t remember from the top of my head which section). This prophet would be a mercy to mankind through teaching us how to live life in accordance to the will of God till the end of time. This prophet was none other than Muhammad (peace be upon him).The number of Muslims, over 2 billion now, On the face of the earth at present is a testament to the truth in his message which he was able to convey in less than fourty years. if you actually just do a little research about the miracles of the Quran which confirms for example scientific findings that were only discovered centuries after the Quran such as how life develops from conception and the embryonic stages etc, and the narrations by contemporaries of the time period regarding the prophet and his statements withregards to future events, the forseeing of technological advances, the unimaginable changes that would occur in society you will be shocked at how much truth there is in them. Also you will see that Islam has a reply to every answer with regards to the suffering in this world. And certainly God/Allah says in the Quran “Verily, We shall put you to test with some fear, and hunger, and with some loss of wealth, lives, and offspring”. And (O Muhammad) convey good tidings to those who are patient, who say, when inflicted by hardship, “Verily we are of God and verily to Him shall we return;” upon them is the blessings of Allah and His mercy. (2:155) which ultimately makes Stephen fry look evil and stupid. What fry forgets that with regards to this suffering, Islam says this world was never meant to be a world of pleasure rather that is for the hereafter. I really cannot do justice to the truth and essence of Islam in this one comment but it is so misunderstood by evil people who simply use its name to carry out whatever evil they want and justify it…feel free to reply to this comment and ask something if you are further curious about Islam and you want to clarify something 🙂

    • Hi Ayaz,

      Thanks for your detailed comments and for clarifying. In other words, do you think that the ‘evil’ in the mortal world which Stephen Fry used as evidence against God, (because his idea is that an all-loving God would ‘never do such a thing’) is actually evidence for his existence? So the hardship we face is a test for our faith in God?

      Does anyone else have any thoughts on this notion?

      • Ayaz

        Hi Jyoti- Islam teaches that this world was not designed to be a place of eternal happiness, if it were then would be the purpose of this worldly life and what would be the point of a heaven in the hereafter. Rather God says in the Qur’an, for example, “Your wealth and your children are but a trial, and Allah has with Him a great reward”- this refers to the fact that everything in this life is temporary and a test as to see who is grateful and relies upon God in times of hardship as well as ease. Fry’s analysis of ‘evil’ being a reason why God does not exist is precisely constricted by his atheism. His perception of God is limited by his refusal to believe that there is no life after death where justice will be done. But God says that on the day of resurrection/judgement “no soul will be wronged in the least”- this is the time when each soul will be recompensed for his actions and the manner in which he dealt with his hardships. Also, Fry uses the example of a child with bone cancer (I think this was the example) which is an absolutely heart breaking thing to have to experience for any family. He says this means that this God is evil. But God says that such hardships are a test of faith, for instance, to cite another example from the Qur’an it is said “Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: “We believe,” and will not be tested”. This essentially suggests that true belief is maintaining patience and faith in the wisdom of God when times are easy but also when they are hard. And that we should not regard hardship as suggesting that God does not love us rather he is the most loving. And with regards to the loss of innocent lives of children, then Islam teaches that their families should not despair rather children who have lost their lives return to their creator with no blame upon them, and will be granted heaven and that this is ultimately the better and lasting life. Islam also emphasises that we will realise how limited and temporary this worldly life is as identified in the Qur’an: ‘ It will be, on the Day they see it, as though they had not remained [in the world] except for an afternoon or a morning thereof”. This refers to the fact that this worldly life will appear to us on the day of resurrection to have lasted shorter than a morning or an afternoon. Therefore my interpretation of this verse is that God is saying that this world is so temporary that we should not despair in his will for the lasting and life of eternal happiness is only available in the hereafter.
        So that is my Islamic reply to Fry’s somewhat unfounded assertions. He attacks God without any attempt to understand the wisdom and context of religion. You might be compare it to, for example, writing a 15,000 word dissertation without having done any research; obviously it’s going to be unfounded and illogical!

  40. Bill Stockley

    I completely agree with Ms Megarry…

    Unfortunately Stephen Fry’s argument fails a simple thought experiment. Let’s say that he is right and there is no god. Then all morality, ethics, authority and society at large immediately goes out the window, as there is no authority on what is right and wrong. My opinion that murder is wrong is no more valid than someone else’s opinion that murder is right, after all, we are just a bag of atoms, and our opinions are just ionic changes within neurons. And suddenly Stephen Fry cannot appeal to any concept of right or wrong. Yet we all accept that murder is wrong – so maybe there is a god?

    • I disagree with your opinion that without God there is no morality. Because, if God decides what is good and what is not, who’s to say He’s actually good? If whatever He does is good, then He’s not actually good. He would just be doing whatever and we would see it as good. He could decide that something we find immoral is now a good thing to do, for example, He could decide that killing people at the age of thirty is okay and if we base our morality on Him, we would too. This means that for God to truly be ‘all-good’, morality must be independent of Him, there must be something else that determines what is moral and what is not and God must be following that.

      • Bill Stockley

        Thanks for your reply Cami. If what you say is true, we then enter a never ending process of trying to find the authority to the authority. However, as a Christian I do not think this is necessary; I believe that God is the unchanging omnipotent creator who has always existed and was not created. If there is a god like this and he has communicated to us, then we need to look no further for the determination of morality.

        I accept what you say that if an all authoritative god like this did something we know to be immoral such as your example of killing all 30 year olds, then we have a problem. But this is logically impossible if he is the definition of morality, as it would be us who are wrong and not him! However, I think this is a theoretical problem only, as if we look at the God revealed in the bible, his character is perfectly just (never turning a blind eye to evil, which is why we all face God’s anger, as we have all done wrong) yet also the perfect example of sacrificial love, ultimately through dying on a cross to save all who trust in him (an offer extended to all of humanity) by taking the punishment their wrongdoing deserved on himself. This is what Rachel Megarry was describing in the article. This is the central message of Christianity. If you want to find out more about the character of God and if he can be trusted as a moral authority then I recommend reading one of the gospels (for example via uncover .org.uk ) which are accounts of Jesus life on earth.

    • Lucy Tonge

      I completely agree with what Stephen is saying. The problem I have with the ending quote is the phrase, “He will neither fail nor abandon you.” To use Mr Fry’s example, say a child develops bone cancer and, despite doctors’ best efforts, is told that nothing more can be done for them. I can imagine that child would struggle not to feel abandoned by this point. There are some things about the supposed criteria by which God would determine who has and hasn’t led a good and moral life which, to me, seem entirely backward. Lets remember, even if Stephen DID want to go to heaven he would be forbidden for his sexuality, something which he had no say in determining.
      You don’t need to be religious to have morals – I am an atheist and I still know what is right and what is wrong. For one thing, I would much rather have no faith than worship a homophobic God.

      • Bill Stockley

        Hi Lucy, thanks for your reply. I am certainly not saying that atheists are incapable of acting in a morally right way, but that they cannot logically justify this, because without a God there is no authority on what is right and what is wrong.

        You said that there is a ‘criteria by which God would determine who has and hasn’t led a good and moral life’ and that Stephen Fry wouldn’t fit this because of his sexuality. This is actually a fundamental (and sadly very common) misunderstanding of Christianity. The message of Christianity is NOT that you have to live a good and moral life to get into heaven, but rather that ALL people have failed to ‘love the Lord their God with all their heart, soul, strength and mind, and love your neighbour as you love yourself’ (Luke 10 verse 27). Therefore all people are deserving of judgement, even those who appear to be ‘good’. No amount of good works can make us good enough for a perfect God. Rather, salvation from God’s judgement and a right relationship with him for all eternity is offered to all people through Jesus taking the punishment we deserved by dying on the cross. This is the message of Christianity. The biblical call for good works is in response to being made right with God, not in order to be made right with God. Hope this is clear.

  41. Cem Huray

    It is belief in your god that has shed the blood of millions of people. Why? Because one of religion’s cornerstone ideas is to surrender yourself to a higher, and omniscient power. People look up to god to solve all their problems and consider it an attack to their own when any sort of criticism is made against their belief. Sometimes things escalate to murder whenever this happens. What we are doing is not blaming god or taking the “easy way out”, religious people do that, they substitute their religion over scientific data and go on about how a bundle of cells is a sacred life and how abortion and stem cell research are abominations of god, and hinder scientific research on the issue while millions of people with spinal cord and brain injuries struggle to control their own diaphragms and suffocate every single day as their lungs fill up with fluid that has to be drained, unable to hug their wives or say “I love you” to their children. A person gets injured and the response is “God wants you to get injured” and because of this some people just pray very hard instead of getting the treatment they actually need. Also Stephen Fry is not “exploiting his fame” to make “such disgusting” statements and “insult” the most “sacred” beliefs in the world. There is no sacred belief, if you believe in a god, keep it to yourself, if you have the nerve to bother other people with your stupid, yes I said stupid, ideals then you are basically an idiot trying to assert your superiority (I think I have acute irony poisoning) over others by telling them how wrong they are or how your belief is the best and most sacred belief in the whole wide world which is only 5000 years old and not a second more(!).

  42. Zainab Omar

    Totally agree with you. It’s disgusting how people such as Stephen Fry think they’re fame allows them to insult the most sacred beliefs in the world

  43. Toby

    Rachel. Timothy 2:12. But science can answer why disease and famine and suffering exist. Religion cannot. I believe what I can see. “God” in whatever way you believe He exists is a bad person/deity. Suffering, hate against gays, women, transgender and other minorities, disease, rape (which isn’t forbid in the 10 Commandments and is advocated in many stories in the Bible, for example Lot and his daughters), murder is what forces me to hate the Christian (and indeed other) God.

  44. Dean

    Nobody asked me if I wanted this guy to be tortured “for me”. I find the Christians’ viewpoint condescending. Oh, he sacrificed himself on the cross, did he? What kind of sacrifice is it if he got resurrected? What did he lose, what did he sacrifice?

    • Fraser

      I’m sorry but the whole ‘He knew he was going to be resurrected so what kind of sacrifice is that’ isn’t the most compelling of arguments. Think about it for a moment. I know if I eat right and go for a run three days a week, chances are I will be a lot fitter. Do I always do it? No, because the pain / effort / discomfort stops me. Or, if I had studied 4 hours a night I probably would have got better qualification, better job, more money. Did I do it? No, the effort was too much. Now multiply that by a thousand and then think ‘would the knowledge that I was going to rise from the dead make it easier to be spat on, abused, abandoned, nailed to a cross and left to suffocate, make it easy to go through with it?’ I don’t think so.