Is it generally accepted when a member who does not believe in a deity aims to critically question aspects of Christianity?

That could be seen as an attack against Christianity.
But it is not an attack against Christians, neither members here nor in general.

For example, somebody who wants to challenge the existence of god, could ask a question "Do angels exist?" and give an answer by himself stating that it does not and supporting it by arguments. That certainly provokes answers that disagree.

That is an open attack against the concept of Christianity, but not against the community of Christians.
It explicitly does not involve malice against a person.

I assume that individual questions challenging aspects of Christianity, are accepted. But I could understand if a member with the expressed purpose to argue against Christianity or religions in general would be not welcome.

This is not clear from the site description.
It is about cases of "understanding the Bible from the perspective of a specific viewpoint". But systematically asking such questions may be perceived by readers as an attack on the him. It is not. Could you accept that attacking the concept of religion does not imply malice? I personally state that there is no malice in it, but I can accept if it is not in the scope of this site.

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    It is not accepted by the site that one self-identifying Christian should critically represent another self-identifying Christian's practice or doctrine. The site rule and practice is to ask genuine and sincere questions about Christianity without disparagement. If Christians are not allowed to critically represent one another I suggest that those who identify themselves as non-Christian should also be expected to ask genuine and sincere questions without turning the question into a rant or an attack or a loaded criticism. This is in agreement with Stack Exchange's policies of being 'nice'.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 10:19
  • Oh, I absolutely mean genuine and sincere questions without disparagement. But as a self-identifying non-Christian. Also not religious in general. I absolutely and explicitly exclude any kind of rant and attack. And specifically loadedness, which is much harder to to avoid, but in this context even more important than in general. It is an interesting point whether being not religious in general does, and should matter. To be clear, I agree in every single point emphatically, but I'm not religious. Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 10:32
  • Answers will naturally have a certain amount of various thoughts here because there are many denominations. Some believe in one subject while others do not. In order to make questions answerable we prefer unless one asks for for an overview of something that questions be focused to a particular denomination in order to not make it too broad.
    – Ken Graham Mod
    Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 12:23
  • Ken and Nigel, feel free to turn your comments into answers, I'd upvote both of them
    – Peter Turner Mod
    Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 14:01
  • There is no way to tell what who is religion_wise that joins this group. We can hope many non Christians do join and learn something that will lead them to Christ as their savior. . Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 1:42

2 Answers 2


Questions that pose objections to specific Christian doctrines are one of the most common form of questions on this site, and they are frequently posed by people who don't believe in those particular doctrines.

If they are well-formed, these types of questions can be well received, highly upvoted and attract high quality answers. Example of a well-formed objection

If they are ill-formed, they frequently attract downvotes, poor quality answers and are at risk of being closed as off-topic.

Some points to ensure any question is in the former category and not the latter:

  • Address your question to a specific Christian viewpoint. Some doctrines are specific enough in themselves to scope a question, but for others, there may be various and even contradictory Christian viewpoints about something that require further specificity to avoid a situation in which contradictory answers are not excluded.
  • Do some research - this will help to hit the mark with the preceding point, but will also help with the following ones as well
  • Avoid false or aguable premises
  • Address steel-man versions of your opponents arguments, not straw-man versions.
  • Browse our Meta FAQs particularly those about writing well-formed, on-topic questions.

In summary, you definitely don't need to believe in God in order to ask well-received questions on here, but writing a well-formed objection question may take a little bit of the effort of the nature of the points above in order to be well-received.

  • Yes, I assume it is pretty important to ask a question in a precise way, and certainly free of even minimal biases, or even loaded questions. I would expect an instantly derailing discussion for anything else. Thanks! Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 21:42

Your personal beliefs don't matter.

But many questions can't be dealt with properly here. Whether you believe in angels or not, asking for proof of their existence just isn't something that we can do. Just like asking for proof of anything supernatural.

  • I see that it is a bad example. I try to come up with a different one. "Is it acceptable to kill a person?". I would possibly answer "No, but it is sometimes unavoidable, as in defense against a lethal threat. Not against nonlethal bodily harm though." I think that is a meaningful question, for example, is it, for a Christian, acceptable to use a handgun for defense against being severely beaten up? Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 14:57
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    @VolkerSiegel None of those questions are allowed either. We call them Truth Questions. But many of them can be made acceptable by scoping the question to a particular denomination.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 14:59
  • @VolkerSiegel In particular, Catholics might answer that question with a "Yes" while Amish and others would likely answer "No". Commented Nov 13, 2019 at 16:09

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