God Can Exist Even If Atheism Is True

by Dr. Richard G. Howe

It is becoming increasingly more common for atheists to define atheism, not as the denial of the existence of God, but as a lack of belief in the existence of God. As such, these atheists maintain that atheism is merely the lack of any affirmation of the existence of God.

Atheist B. C. Johnson says, “Theists believe in God, while atheists do not have such a belief.  Many theists insist that it is the responsibility of the atheist to offer evidence justifying his lack of belief in God.  But is the theist’s demand rational?  Must the atheist justify his lack of belief in God?   Or does the burden rest with the theist? [B. C. Johnson, The Atheist Debater’s Handbook (Buffalo:  Prometheus Books, 1983):  11] Atheist Doug Krueger writes, “The term ‘atheism’ is from the Greek atheos. The prefix ‘a’ means ‘without,’ and the Greek theos means ‘god,’ so atheism means simply ‘being without god.’ Theism asserts that there is a god, so atheism is the view which does not assert that there is a god.” [Douglas E. Krueger, What Is Atheism? A Short Introduction  (Amherst, NY:  Prometheus Books, 1998):  17] (Notice, by the way, the fallacious move in Krueger’s reasoning. He goes from the ‘not’ (from the Greek alpha) modifying ‘God’ (which is what the Greek has) to the ‘not’ modifying ‘assert.’ This allows him the semblance of grounding his position in the etymology of the Greek while illicitly concluding that atheism is the absence of the assertion of God instead of the negation of God as the Greek actually says…


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