What It Means To Be A Practicing Atheist
Besides the professing atheists who plainly say they do not believe in God, there are the practicing atheists who claim to believe in God but their actions say differently. Jesus says, "By their fruits you will know them" (Matthew 7:20). A practicing atheist says one thing but does another.
Take for instance a young man, who is trying to impress his girlfriend, says to her that he would climb the highest mountain for her, swim the widest river for her, and would fight the meanest animal to protect her. Then he tells her, "Iíll be over Saturday night if it doesnít rain". This same profession of love and devotion to God is claimed by the practicing atheist.
One does not really believe what the Bible says concerning church attendance (Hebrews 10:25) unless he attends regularly. If the practicing atheist has better things to do than worshipping God, he forsakes the assembly. Jesus says, "But why do you call Me, Lord, Lord, and not do the things which I say" (Luke 6:46)). Even though the practicing atheists claims to believe in God, they essentially say to God, "When I have a convenient season I will call for you (Acts 24:25), or serve you if I donít have something else to do." Jesus says, "He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me, and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me" (Matthew 10:37).
One does not put the Lord first if he does not give generously of his time, effort, and money. Is it possible for one to really believe that souls must be saved or they will be eternally lost if one never tries to win anyone for Christ. One is a practicing atheist unless his number one priority in this life is to go to Heaven. Jesus says, "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you" (Matthew 6:33). Are we seeking first the kingdom of God?
Practicing atheists also include those of the denominations. The denominations claim to believe in God, but they donít obey Him. They laugh at Godís plan of salvation (Mark 16:16) and have substituted their own plans of salvation (Galatians 1:6-9). They have their own churches (Matthew 15:9, 13), and their own forms of worship. Because of this Jesus says, "And in vain they worship Me teaching as doctrines the commandments of men" (Mark 7:7). Jesus also says, "Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven" (Matthew 7:21). Practicing atheists have not done the will of the Father so they can go to heaven, even though they call Jesus their Lord.
Jesus says, "He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad" (Matthew 12:30). Either we are with Jesus and we will do what ever He says or we are against Him and not do what He says. The practicing atheists, who claim to believe in God but do not faithfully obey him are not any better than the devils. James 2:19 says, "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe and tremble." If one does not faithfully do what God says in the Bible, he does not really believe in God and is a practicing atheist, since he does not take God for His word.