What advice do you give to the atheist who alleges that he is constantly insulted by Trinitarian apologists, who justify themselves by appeal to Ezekiel 23:20 (using vulgar language while being filled with the Holy Spirit ), John 8:44 (Jesus insults the Pharisees), Acts 23:3 (Paul insults the High Priest), and 1st Corinthians 11:1 (we must imitate Paul as he imitates Christ)?
These apologists say that the NT admonitions to be nice (1st Peter 3:15) apply only when the unbeliever in question is humble and seeking truth, and that these NT authors expected their originally intended readers to recognize that the requirement of being polite does not apply to the case of the determined skeptic who continually rejects the gospel. In other words, so they claim, America’s churches would be in much better shape if they persistently confronted skepticism in the same spirit of angry riposte that characterized the honor/shame contests of the ancient Jews.
What should the atheist do after confirming that Trinitarian inerrantists, who all agree on the doctrines that are “essential to salvation”, nevertheless disagree with each other on how to answer this?
Should the atheist conclude that the biblical data are too convoluted to permit drawing a reasonably certain answer?
Or should the atheist conclude that the reason equally sincere equally knowledgeable Christians disagree on such a thing is because by preventing an easy answer, God in his mysterious ways wants the atheist to keep searching for this answer?