Question: I’ve got a friend who is a pretty strong atheist. I started witnessing to him a few months ago and I finally got him to go to church and at least think about God, but I’m not sure if it’s helping at all. He seems to think it’s all a big joke. I have a hard time witnessing to him because he doesn’t believe that the Bible is true; he thinks a bunch of bored people just sat down and wrote it to see how many people would believe it. So i can’t really show him Scripture about Jesus and how he gave his life for us because he laughs. I don’t know how else to witness to him except through the Bible. What should I do?
Answer: You know, it’s quite fashionable for people to say they are atheists these days. What’s interesting is that very few people who claim to be atheists have really taken the time to do some serious study in this area or to give it any serious thought.
It sounds to us like your friend just finds it convenient to deny that God exists. It gets him off the hook. Think about it. If he admits there is a God, that means he is responsible to God. His life is not his own. People don’t like that. They want to live they way they want to live. As the Bible says, they love darkness rather than light.
Here’s the bottom line (in our opinion). That fact that your friend derides God and laughs at the Bible means he hasn’t really thought it through, and he probably doesn’t want the truth at this point in his life. Until he’s ready to really think through his belief, you probably aren’t going to get through to him. In fact, it isn’t up to you anyway. What we suggest is that you continue to pray for him. And don’t worry about trying to witness to him through the Bible. Your best witness is you. Until he’s ready to hear what the Bible has to say, let your life be the word of God to him.
Ask him good questions. Ask him to define his beliefs. Ask why he doesn’t believe there is a God. How did he arrive at that conclusion? Pay attention to his answers (if he has any), but don’t argue with him. Just keep affirming the truth about God and the Bible. Most importantly, tell him you are praying for him because you really care about him! He may brush you off, but don’t worry about it. God is going to use your prayers to soften his heart.
Don’t take on the responsibility all yourself. Let God do what God does. In God’s time, He will work in your friend’s life through the prompting of the Holy Spirit. Until that happens, all you can do is listen to God yourself, stay in the Bible, and pray.
May the Lord bless your efforts on behalf of your friend. He’s lucky to have you in his life.