The Parable Of
The Generous Man
Dear Mr Walker:
A few years ago a seminarian came to work as an intern at the Art Studio where I was working. In an ethics class, he and his "brothers" were discussing the question, "Can an atheist be moral?"
The answer, of course, was no. He objected, however.
Knowing me to be both an atheist and (seemly) moral he wanted my opinion. I sent him back with "The Parable of The Generous Man" which I would like to share with you, for what it's worth.
There once was a generous man who went to the inner city. The sight of overwhelming poverty pained him deeply.
"I must help these people," he thought. "But all the money I have on me can't be spread around to all these many people. I shall give every cent that I have to the first person who asks! That will at least help one person."
At this point a man approached and said, "I'm very poor, my family is desperate."
"Aha," thought the generous man, "here is the very one!"
As the generous man reached for his wallet the poor man pulled out a gun and stuck it in his face. "Gimme all your money or I'll blow your head off!"
The generous man gave him all the money.
Question: Since the generous man was in the act of giving him the money anyway, was this an act of charity?
Even the seminarians had to answer, no.
Therefore if a Christian believes in a god who will punish him for immoral acts, it is not truly possible for said Christian to be moral. And only atheists could be moral.
Boy-oh-boy did the seminarians hate that one.
This work was revised to enhance online readability. The original was published in the print edition.
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