"God still loves you."

"God still loves you" is something atheists will hear from the religious toward the end of one of those conversations where the religious participant is starting to figure out there isn't going to be a reconversion.  Not today, at any rate.

This is meant to create a nagging sense of obligation on the part of the atheist.   But let's break it down logically and see what is really going on here. God This is the subject of the statement.  But the speaker already knows we don't believe in it.  So by stating to us that God's doing anything about us (even having an emotion about us is doing something), the religious speaker is dismissing our position as trivial and worthy of being ignored.


This is a sneaky little word.  By adding this to the sentence the speaker works in the implication that this is an ongoing situation, which means it was real before and continues to be real.  It's like the proverbial encoding a presumption of an answer into the question, when the reporter asked, "Senator, are you still beating your wife?"Loves You

There's apparently an entire mode of Christian worship that consists of encoding the information about God's love for us into large signs and banners at football games, which all say "John 3:16".
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (KJV)
This supposedly unconditional love starts growing conditions and caveats right there in that single verse.  "Whosoever believeth in him...?" That no longer includes me, and it also doesn't include a heck of a lot of other people, including several billion who never heard of the whole concept.  So this God manages to love "the world" but not many of its inhabitants.  And what will become of them, since they aren't admitted into this rather exclusive "everlasting life" club?
Rev 21:8 "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death." (KJV)
Funny kind of love, that.  In the context of Bronze Age Palestine, just so you know, "idolaters" are anyone with a different religion from you.  "Whoremongers" are anyone whose sexual taboos aren't the same as yours or a superset of them.  And the "unbelieving", well, that's me.  So I think I can safely say the best thing for me to do is to turn away from this abusive kind of love.

This is #6 of a series covering the top ten goofy things religious people say to atheists.