It’s hardly surprising. Rational discussion is the natural enemy of religion as theological arguments tend to crumble and fade away in its presence.
Case in point: voluble Christbot Bill Muehlenberg at Christianity Today. He had a little rant the other day about all those annoying atheists and that awful Catherine Deveny (particularly this article) and won’t they just leave us alone and anyway atheism makes no sense because how can you hate something that you think doesn’t exist.
I submitted a comment which (surprise surprise) wasn’t published, but I’ve learned to keep copies of such things.
Mr Muehlenberg, you got so close to indicating an understanding of the atheist's position a few times, before veering off. Let me show you a couple of turns you missed.
"They do this of course for at least two reasons: to discount the overwhelming longing for transcendence found among mankind, and to discredit those who are believers."
The first ... no. Simply not true. No atheist is interested in discounting the longing for transcendence. They merely point out that our modern religions provide a very poor imitation of it. Your second point is closer to the mark, but you show a lack of understanding of this with this later argument:
"They spend large hunks of their adult lives getting all hot and bothered about someone they claim does not exist."
Wrong. They get hot and bothered about the claims of believers and the things believers do in the name of someone that does not exist.
The closest you get to actual insight in your article was this:
"Indeed, in a totally materialistic world, our genes end up explaining – and causing – everything we do, believe or value. We are simply the product of our genes."
It's a little over-simplified, but pretty close to the mark. What exactly is your problem with this position? Any serious argument against atheism needs to address why this isn't the case, and yet you just threw it out there as if it is self-evidently wrong.
Let me ask you this, Mr Muehlenberg ... what evidence do you have that this statement is not true?
I may be waiting some time for a response.