18 Surprising Bible Lessons Atheists Might Actually Agree With

By Krystal Brown

For many religious people, The Bible is the foundation of their beliefs, with 11% of Americans reading it daily. While it’s primarily Christians who read The Bible, some atheists can have learned many things from it.  We take a look at 18 lessons even atheists take from this religious text:

Common Sayings and Proverbs

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There are many popular sayings from The Bible that are ingrained in our language and used by both believers and non-believers. They can offer valuable life lessons to all, for example, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (Matthew 7:12), which encourages us to treat others as we would like them to treat us. 

Compassion and Empathy

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The Bible stresses the importance of compassion and empathy for others. These values are important for building strong relationships and creating a better world, whether you follow religion or not. 

The Importance of Forgiveness

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The concept of forgiveness and its power to mend relationships is also stressed in The Bible. Stories, such as “The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant” (Matthew 18:21-35), in which a king forgives a servant who owes him a great debt. However, the servant refuses to forgive a fellow servant who owes him a much smaller amount, much to the king’s dismay, and goes on to pun the servant. This parable emphasizes that our ability to forgive others is linked to God’s forgiveness for us. It can inspire readers to consider the value of forgiveness in their own lives.

Power of Storytelling

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The Bible is filled with stories that engage people beyond religions as they explore love, betrayal, forgiveness, and redemption themes. These stories hold value for all readers, with even atheists taking some comfort from what they’re reading, even if they don’t take The Bible literally. 

Myths and Legends

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In addition to traditional stories, The Bible contains myths and legends that offer insights into the belief systems of the time. Stories such as “The Garden of Eden” (Genesis 2-3), in which Adam and Eve, living in paradise, are tempted by a serpent and expelled from the garden, are biblical myths that provide a window into how people explained the world around them.

Historical Detail

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While atheists don’t believe in religion, some do take an interest in the Bible’s history. This gives insight into the beliefs, practices, and societies that brought the book to life and enables readers to understand how people interpreted events of the time. 

Core Beliefs

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The Bible presents core concepts of fairness, justice, and the treatment of others with respect. These principles resonate with most people, regardless of their religious beliefs. Examples include the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20), which outline prohibitions against stealing, lying, murdering, and coveting.

Creative Inspiration

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Thousands of artists, from painters to musicians, have taken inspiration from The Bible and its teachings. References and themes from the Bible can be found in works of art, such as Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus and Handel’s Messiah. 

Understanding Cultural References

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The Bible provides context for many cultural and religious references encountered in everyday life. Understanding the Bible enables those not necessarily religious to understand what people discuss when they make biblical references. 

Philosophical Exploration

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The Bible poses many philosophical questions about life, death, and our existence. Just as atheists ponder the pros and cons of religion, they enjoy discussing some of the events and philosophical questions that arise from The Bible. 

Language Evolution

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The Bible offers insight into the evolution of language, as Hebrew and Greek have influenced modern languages. Studying these original languages showcases how people communicated thousands of years ago, offering historical connections that some other texts can’t. 

Sociological Insights

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Social structures and hierarchies of ancient societies are evident in stories throughout The Bible.  Understanding these power dynamics and social norms can help us understand how societies function today and how they have evolved over thousands of years. 

Overcoming Challenges

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When we need to overcome challenges, we often turn to literature for advice and inspiration. The Bible is no different, as it features stories of characters overcoming fear and doubt. These stories can inspire readers to face their challenges with perseverance.

Perseverance in Adversity

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The Bible also contains accounts of perseverance in the face of hardship, such as Moses’s mission to reach the promised land. These stories offer encouragement and motivation to those facing difficulties, even non-believers. 

The Complex Nature of Power 

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While power can benefit many, it can also be corrupt power, a theme explored extensively in The Bible. Through various passages and parables, we learn from the people who misused their power and those who used power to benefit others. 

Personal Growth

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We look for personal growth in many ways, whether it be learning from our family and peers or soaking up information from TV and books. If we were just to read texts we think we will like, we would never experience the thoughts and beliefs of others. The Bible allows atheists to gain insight into many aspects of life, thus improving personal growth.

Importance of Community

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The Bible emphasizes the importance of community and belonging, aiming to reinforce how we can all come together. These themes of supporting one another are relevant to understanding the role of social connections in human life, whether you’re religious or not. 

A Message of Hope

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Despite acknowledging life’s hardships, the Bible ultimately offers hope for the future. This message of hope can be a source of inspiration for readers of all backgrounds and is not all about preaching people to convert to religion. 

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Truths About Christianity That No One Is Ready To Hear

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Christianity has a long and complex history and many different ways to understand and practice it exist. As with any religion, some aspects of Christianity can be challenging. Here are harsh truths about Christianity that some people may not be ready to hear: Truths About Christianity That No One Is Ready To Hear