Christopher Hitchens Legacy to Humanity
Christopher Hitchens legacy to humanity falls short of what it could have been.
A statement released by Vanity Fair late the night Christopher Hitchens died stated:
“There will never be another like Christopher. A man of ferocious intellect, who was as vibrant on the page as he was at the bar,” Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter said in the statement. “Those who read him felt they knew him, and those who knew him were profoundly fortunate souls.”
I agree that there will never be another person like Christopher Hitchens and there was never anyone like him before. God creates each of us uniquely and to each of us gives some exceptional ability which not many of us actually aspire to achieve to the level that Christopher Hitchens did during his lifetime of 62 years.
Christopher Hitchens’ legacy to Humanity is in my eyes two fold. Overall, Christopher Hitchens could have been so much greater than he was. Christopher Hitchens had a chance to positively change the world yet instead his legacy promotes and inspires an immense hatred against people who have placed their faith in God’s promises and follow Christ Jesus.
Firstly his greatest success: Hitchens correctly went after and exposed perverted religious zealots who aspire to power and wealth and bring corruption into the world stating that God is giving them authority to do so. With his God given wit, Hitchens attacked them using his God given verbal and writing skills.
In Hitchens’ rightly attacking religion, he was following what God teaches us in the Bible as religion separates people from God. “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” James 1:27 NIV
Secondly his greatest failure: Although Hitchens knew who God is, he also attacked God during his fight against religious zealots. With his inclusion of God during his attacks, Hitchens even though knowing who God is, is today giving many atheists an enhanced inspiration to spew messages of vile hatred towards God and Christians.
To his credit: Christopher Hitchens during his lifetime clearly defined to everyone who God is and what a true Christian isyet many atheists choose to overlook and not care to know what Hitchens said and wrote about God.
To his discredit: Instead of pointing people to Whom God actually is and clearly dividing a rightful line between religion and God, Hitchens chose to muddle religion with God just as those religious zealots Hitchens so rightly went after and exposed.
Christopher Hitchens knew who God is: Upon more than one occasion Hitchens made it clear that he knew what true Christianity is. In his article NewYorkTimes.com; “In the Name of the Father, the Sons . . .”(1) Hitchens clearly shows his knowledge and understanding of and articulates to those who read it in context, who Christ Jesus is:
‘Belief in the divinity of Jesus of Nazareth and belief in the virtue of his teachings are not at all the same thing. Writing to John Adams in 1813, having taken his razor blade to the books of the New Testament and removed all “the artificial vestments in which they have been muffled by priests,” Thomas Jefferson said the 46-page residue contained “the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man.” Ernest Renan, in his path breaking “Life of Jesus” in 1863, also repudiated the idea that Jesus was the son of God while affirming the beauty of his teachings. In rather striking contrast, C. S. Lewis maintained in his classic statement “Mere Christianity”:
“That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God; or else a madman or something worse.”
As an admirer of Jefferson and Renan and a strong nonadmirer of Lewis, I am bound to say that Lewis is more honest here. Absent a direct line to the Almighty and a conviction that the last days are upon us, how is it “moral” to teach people to abandon their families, give up on thrift and husbandry and take to the stony roads? How is it moral to claim a monopoly on access to heaven, or to threaten waverers with everlasting fire, let alone to condemn fig trees and persuade devils to infest the bodies of pigs? Such a person if not divine would be a sorcerer and a fanatic.’
In Hitchens’ review of a book by fellow atheist Philip Pullman who is writing about Jesus, Hitchens makes an incredibly important point. If we take Jesus seriously, then we have to take seriously what he said about himself. You cannot separate the ‘words’ of Jesus from the ‘identity’ of Jesus.
C. S. Lewis says Jesus is the Son of God or a madman or something worse. Hitchens agrees. Lewis says he’s the Son of God whereas Hitchens stated Jesus might have been a sorcerer or a fanatic.
This brings us back to the famous “trilemma.”
Is Jesus Lord?
Is Jesus a liar?
Is Jesus a lunatic?
Hitchens is absolutely right to insist that the so-called “moral teachings” of Christ make no sense unless he is indeed the Son of God, a conclusion Hitchens utterly rejects at the time of his writing the review. Christians would say that Hitchens is right on the first point but wrong in his conclusion. But at least he frames the issue correctly.(2)
Christopher Hitchens knew what true Christianity is and how to be saved From eternal death: During a “Portland Monthly Magazine” interview when asked about what is a true Christian Hitchens stated:
“I would say that if you don’t believe that Jesus of Nazareth was the Christ and Messiah, and that he rose again from the dead and by his sacrifice our sins are forgiven, you’re really not in any meaningful sense a Christian.”(3)
Christopher Hitchens’ overall legacy to humanity deeply saddens me: Hitchens knowing clearly who God is muddled his rightful hatred of religion and religious zealots with an irate hatred of God. Today this clearly is wrathfully fueling immense hatred and vile comments in so many atheists against people who worship Christ Jesus and desire that Hitchens prior to his death repented of his sins. It also saddens me that to my limited knowledge Christopher Hitchens continued to reject his Creator’s gift of salvation, our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus.
There is hope “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” Romans 10:13 KJV: With Christopher Hitchens knowing who God actually is and what a true Christian is, it brings to me hope that Hitchens just prior to his final moments of life on this earth be it expressed out loud or not, could have accepted Christ Jesus as his Christ and Messiah.
Yet you and I will not know until our deaths will we. Neither you nor me have died so you and me don’t know Christopher Hitchens’ final choice on accepting Christ Jesus or not. My desire is that Christopher Hitchens prior to his death did accept Christ Jesus as his savior.
One thing however I do know is that at this time either if he chose to accept Christ Jesus as his savior or not is that Christopher Hitchens’ desire now more than ever is that he wants you to accept Christ Jesus as your savior.
3)Quote from Christopher Hitchens from “Portland Monthly Magazine” http://www.portlandmonthlymag.com/arts-and-entertainment/category/books-and-talks/articles/christopher-hitchens