There is a long letter from various Bishops in today's Independent. They make some strong practical, moral and economic arguments for not renewing the Trident programme. I can't help feeling though, that in arguing in the market place, the phrase which they chose to use, that the possession and use of nuclear weapons are 'anti-God acts' does not help their case.
If I say that your behaviour is anti-God then the answer 'There is no God' ends the argument. I cannot respond. It gives you a chink. I am becoming more and more convinced that as a Christian my relationship with God is not something I can use to add weight to an argument on matters of ethics or morality unless it is to do with matters concerning Christians alone.
I may believe, deeply and profoundly, that God has told me something I must do or say (I don't, usually) but in arguing with those who do not share my faith I do best appealing to logic and reason alone.
Many of my blog-friends are people with whom I have no common ground of spirituality or faith. I notice them being profoundly irritated, sometimes when commenting at Mustard Seed Shavings but more often at other sites and chat-rooms, where assumptions about God are made to them, or more often, at them. Then an argument ensues that goes, to summarise:
God says this...
No he doesn't there isn't a God.
Yes he does; it says so in the Bible.
What's the Bible got to do with God? People wrote it.
But it's God's word...
Continue ad absurdum
I believe in God, in my own way, and will gladly explain to anyone who is interested the complexities and peculiarities of how that works for me, but I am sure we can find enough non-theological reasons to defer upgrading Trident. If we can't, maybe we should upgrade Trident. Trying to second-guess God on the matter seems to me to over-complicate things.
I notice that one of the signatories to the letter is my current Diocesan Bishop and another will shortly be my new Diocesan Bishop so how intelligent is this post?