Some tried to extinguish “a future state.”
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) is remembered for his line “God is dead.”
He exposed how hypocritical it was for atheists to claim to be “moral” (“Twilight of the Idols,” The Portable Nietzsche, ed., trans. Walter Kaufman, NY: Penguin Books, 1976, p. 515-6):
“When one gives up the Christian faith, one pulls the right to Christian morality out from under one’s feet.
This morality is by no means self-evident: this point has to be exhibited again and again, despite the English flatheads.
Christianity is a system, a whole view of things thought out together. By breaking one main concept out of it, the faith in God, one breaks the whole: nothing necessary remains in one’s hands.
Christianity presupposes that man does not know, cannot know, what is good for him, what evil: he believes in God, who alone knows it.
Christian morality is a command; its origin is transcendent; it is beyond all criticism, all right to criticism; it has truth only if God has truth — it stands or falls with faith in God.”