Atheists intelligent ?

Are Atheists more intelligent?

About a week ago, I ran across an article that  stated religious people are less intelligent  than atheists, according to a new review of sixty-three scientific studies stretching back over  several decades to 1921. A team from the University of  Rochester found “a reliable negative relation between  intelligence and religiosity” in fifty-three out of sixty- three studies, even in cases of extreme older age where  people widely believe that humanity turns to God as they  age. Nevertheless, while previous studies have tended  to assume that intelligent people (those with IQs over  135) simply “know better,” the researchers conclude  that the reasons for their findings may be more complex.  For instance, because they find that intelligent people  are more likely to be married and are more likely to be  successful in life (are you beginning to get agitated?),  they may need religion less. The article concludes  with the words of the researchers: “People possessing  the functions that religion provides are likely to adopt  atheism; people lacking these very functions (e.g., the  poor, the helpless) are likely to adopt theism.”

When I first ran across this article, read its title  and began to read its content, I admit that I got a bit  offended. I believe my intelligence is average to above  average, but certainly not in the 2.2% of the population  used for this study. I did well in school and made good  grades. Yes, I was a nerd! I admit it. Thus, when I read  this article, it took me back a bit. Moreover, I know some  pretty smart Christians. Therefore, is this really accurate?  Is this fair? How should we respond to such? Do we get  riled up and wish to protest? Do we ignore and consider  it rubbish?

As these thoughts quickly ran through my mind, I  remembered something that Paul declared, which set my  mind at ease. Indeed, this article may be true and factual,  and I do not have to allow it to bother me at all. Consider  a marvelous passage that Paul wrote to the church at  Corinth (1 Cor. 1:18-31). Through Paul’s quotation, God  said that he “ will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and  will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent ”  (1:19). He then asks, “ Where is the wise ? … Hath not  God made foolish the wisdom of this world ?” (1:20).  Thus, Paul contrasts the wisdom of this world (those  intellectual Greeks who seek after wisdom [1:22], such  as those who are mentioned in this article and see no need  for God in their lives) with godly wisdom, contained in  the preaching of the gospel and considered by intelligent  ones as “ foolishness ” (1:21). Paul begins his conclusion,  “ For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you  were wise according to worldly standards …” (1:26  ESV). Is this not exactly how the article concludes? God  knew this all along! He explains at the end of this first  chapter that this is by design, because God has selected  things that intelligent men consider foolish, weak, base  and despised to manifest Himself so “ that no flesh should  glory in his presence…He that glorieth, let him glory in  the Lord ” (1:29, 31).

In other words, I do not have to be offended or  repulsed by such statements and conclusions, because I  know that Jesus Christ is the personified wisdom of God  (1:24, 30), and it is a tragic fact that people with high  intelligence are also haughty, self-sufficient and render  themselves in a position that often makes it difficult to  see God. May our prayer and aim be to reach them in  such a way that they are able to see the evidence of God  (and their own need for God) before it is eternally too  late!

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