Give me an atheist who acts like a good Christian rather than someone who claims to be a good Christian but isn't

I heard Nick Clegg's revelation that he does not believe in God this morning on Radio Five and was, a little shocked and surprised he did not elaborate more on his answer (he did have the opportunity to do so and did so on other questions). But you have to admire his honesty and his ability to give a straight answer to a straight question.

Since then the BBC in particular seem to be wetting themselves in excitement over what Nick Clegg said. It was being discussed on Radio 4 and Radio Five on the way home form work this evening. But in what must have come as a surprise to the BBC, the Reverend Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury and other religious people being interviewed did not seem to think it matters at all if a person believes in god or not. in their view it was your own personal values and morality that counts. I couldn't agree more.

The point was made very well for me when the Tory brought on to speak about the issue showed us why it is what people do that matters more than their religion. Tory MP mark Pritchard, who recently led a commons debate on "Christianaphobia" chose not to attack Mr Clegg for what he said, but then sought to misrepresent the Lib Dems real poll ratings in the most recent opinion poll and the party's policies as well questioning Nick Clegg's honesty over some policy areas.

To me, Mr Pritchard showed us all that although he is a Christian, he is not averse to bending the truth in a way that I would describe as being far from the values I associate with Christianity.

I believe that the values that Christianity teaches us, of fairness, honesty, selfless giving and of love and compassion are good values for anyone to follow, believers and non believers alike. Simply telling people you are a Christian but acting in a way that shows contempt for Christian values is hypocritical, and we have had enough of that from Tony Blair in recent years. I know a large number of Christians who are thoroughly decent people who are an example to others, but I have known a few over the years and met some on doorsteps when doing my politics, whose actions are reprehensible and the very opposite of the compassionate caring creed that I believe Christianity teaches.

So give me Nick Clegg, a man who may not believe, but allows and encourages his children to be Christians, a man who can shows understanding and tolerance of something he does not believe in himself any day over pompous and eluded Christians who talk about the values of Christianity but show contempt for them in their own actions.


Laurence Boyce said...

To me, Mr Pritchard showed us all that although he is a Christian, he is not averse to bending the truth in a way that I would describe as being far from the values I associate with Christianity.

Yeah, like Christianity doesn’t involve any bending of the truth. Ever.

James said...

Typical tabloid approach to politics from the BBC.
As someone who is a fairly evangelical Christian (all lynchings by appointment!)
& a Lib Dem to boot,
I agree 100% with your statement.
I'd much rather politicans were honest about their relgious beliefs, or lack of them, rather than the hypocritical nonsense they have in America.

Jo A said...

I really think Nick's religion has nothing to do with anybody but himself and his family.

I didn't want to know! It's not my business...

Someone once blathered on about how he didn't like one of the MPs being very religious and I felt like saying the same thing to him...

Rob said...

I think the point is, Laurence, that it's not *supposed* to involve bending the truth. But Christians individually are almost as fallible as the rest of the human race ;-)

Lee Griffin said...

What bending of the truth is there in Christian *values* though Laurence? ;)

Charlie Marks said...

Latest on this story is that God has issued a statement saying he doesn't believe in Nick Clegg. He says that Clegg is in fact one of Dave the Chameleon's characters: "Well, it's obvious, isn't it? You never see them in the same room!"

Ruwan said...

You dont have to be posh to be privileged...and you dont have to be christian to have ethics.