by RICK NISCHALKE
Does God exist? – cont’d
This post is the third in a series on how to survive parental alienation. If you haven’t read the previous posts I would suggest doing so before reading this one.
In my previous post #2 of this series we left off here:
It’s been my experience through the years that there are really only a handful of reasons that people refuse to believe in (or acknowledge) the existence of God.
- Some of us have never really given much thought or done our own research on the subject, so we end up accepting and repeating what some authority figure in our life told us we should believe.
- Some believe that our cultures’ “current version of science” has all of the answers and they are under the false belief that no one of above average intelligence believes in Intelligent Design and Creation.
- If God does in fact exist, this truth may require changes in their lifestyle that they are unwilling to make.
- Many become angry and appalled with the injustice, evil and pain in this world. They ask “If God exists how could He let all of this happen”?
- In some cases people that used to believe in God change their view because they feel that God has let them down in some way. They become disillusioned by their own false understanding about who God is and how He operates in our world. They believe that God has an obligation to answer every prayer the way that they think He should or He must not be real or trustworthy. Or worse yet, if they are in deep enough pain and confusion they simply walk away from a relationship with Him. Sometimes they profess not to believe in Him at all, but most of the time they are just angry, hurt and disillusioned by their pain so they refuse to worship, follow or even acknowledge God’s existence anymore.
Please let me begin by saying that volumes could be written and discussed about each one of these subjects. In fact volumes have been written! But it isn’t my intention here to address each of these topics in the depth that they deserve and not one of them has any “easy” answers. My hope is to stimulate you to ponder and perhaps research these subjects further after you hear my perspective on them. You may or may not come to the same conclusions that I have, but at least you will have put an honest effort into resolving these issues in your own mind and heart.
Let’s start with reason #1 first and take them in order:
William James is credited with the statement: “The aim of education to teach you how to think not what to think.” Now I can’t attest to the accuracy of whether he was the first to come up with this statement or not, I just know it wasn’t me! I do however agree with the statement. Sadly in my lifetime I have seen many people influenced by formal education in just the opposite way. I believe that most of us would agree that academia and a formal education certainly has value in our society. But the sad reality is that there seems to be a distinct trend in our educational system to “program and persuade” students to certain political and societal beliefs as well as teaching scientific theories as though they are fact in the classroom. It has been my experience that very few teachers or professors welcome an honest and unbiased investigation and debate of the subjects they teach in their classes.
The fallout of this type of programming is that many people fail to question, research or form their own opinions even after they graduate from high school or college. They let the media, a political figure or party, an actor or actress, or even popular opinion sway their views instead of thinking through and researching the subjects to come up with their own strongly held conclusions and beliefs.
Nowhere is this pattern more destructive than when it comes to your belief about whether God exists or not and how that impacts your life and purpose in this world.
It would be a tragedy to go through life never caring enough or being too gullible to do your own research on the subject. And in the end to realize that the rest of eternity depended on your decision to accept or reject God’s love while you were here on this earth. To find out that there is a God that created you, loves you and has offered you an invitation to be a child of His (instead of just a creation) with the ability to live with Him forever in peace, joy and security in a world without sin, pain, injustice and grief, and you turned it down by not answering His call.
Some of the smartest, wisest and most educated people in the field of science have contributed great things to our society and the world at large. Many of the most influential contributors in this field were and are Christians. Their contributions have made a significant impact on our understanding of the universe and our way of life on a daily basis. Progress in the realm of science has been nothing less than amazing at times. But like every other field of human endeavor, you have the best of the best and the worst of the worst.
If you are counting on science alone for the answers to God’s existence you are doomed. Here are just a few reasons why. God has revealed in scripture that we are finite beings. We are limited in our understanding of who we are as created beings, let alone attempting to understand a creator that has an infinite understanding of all things because He created them. God makes it very clear that we are incapable of comprehending certain levels of understanding that He has purposely hidden from us.
But even if you don’t know or believe what God has revealed in His word, let’s take a brief look at sciences’ track record. The following examples were all taught as fact at one time in history:
- Science told us the world was flat.
- Science told us that the sun revolved around the earth.
- Science said the speed of sound and light could never be broken.
- Science taught the atom was the smallest particle in existence.
- Science continues to change and update the scope of what they discover in astronomy daily.
- “Politically popular” science today teaches anything but Creation and Intelligent Design.
The list could go on indefinitely. Am I attempting to discredit or nullify the study of any of the sciences? Of course not, I am simply pointing out that the field of any scientific study is in a continual state of change based upon new discoveries and techniques that are learned as time goes on. So the first impediment to obtaining concrete answers from science is the continual lag in discovering truths that already exist about life and creation’s secrets.
The next major flaw in relying solely on science for an answer about God’s existence is this. True science works like this: Men and women set out to discover the secrets of the universe and use every tool available to discern these hidden truths. If the research is untainted, the scientists involved will share their findings regardless of where their research takes them. It may or may not prove or disprove a previous hypothesis. A scientist or research organization with integrity takes great pains to implement valid testing criteria and provides an unbiased conclusion about the data collected.
Sadly, all too often a scientist or research organization has an agenda going into their research. They do everything in their power to set up test parameters that will ensure they receive validation of the very “facts” that they want to promote. This is usually done for professional notoriety or politically or financially motivated. Sad but true.
Add to that, scientists that don’t believe anything unless they can “prove” it with science. So let’s ask a logical question here. Until the renowned scientists of the day had proof that the world was round they believed and taught that the world was flat, did that make it true? Just because we haven’t discovered ways to validate many of the things that God has revealed in His word does that make God wrong? Or does it just mean that we still have more to learn to catch up with what He has revealed in the scriptures? I don’t know about you but I’m inclined to believe the latter.
One more thing on the subject, look around you. Examine every part of the human body, the insect world, the ocean and marine-life, the stars and cosmos. Do you really need to be a scientist to figure out that our world, the cosmos and every human being was a creation of an intelligent being with a purpose? Some people would have you believe that there are no intelligent Christians. Here is a very short list of prominent individuals well respected for their intellect that expressed a strong belief in God: Galileo Galilei , Blaise Pascal, Sir Isaac Newton, Robert Boyle, Michael Faraday, Gregor Mendel, Max Planck, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, Louis Pasteur, Heinrich Hertz, Lord Kelvin, George Washington Carver, Albert Schweitzer, Denis Alexander, Jocelyn Bell Burnell, William Newsome, Brian Kobilka, Mike Hulme, John Lennox.
This is probably the saddest reason not to believe in and have a relationship with God. When someone refuses to acknowledge God in their life because He might require them to make changes in their lifestyle and choices, it’s truly all about control, pride and selfishness. I know that sounds harsh but there’s no nice way to say that.
God has extended an offer of salvation, grace and mercy through His son Jesus Christ. When we refuse His incredibly painful sacrifice of love on the cross as atonement for our sins we essentially spit in His face and say “No thanks. I don’t answer to anyone. I’ll do life my way. I don’t need or want your offer”.
These people realize that if God does in fact exist, that this truth will require certain things from them. They would be forced to come to grips with the fact that they aren’t the most important person in the universe. They would be forced to concede that there is someone in the universe that has the right to hold them accountable for their sins. If God doesn’t exist they can live a life with virtually no accountability or restrictions except for man-made laws in their culture. They can do whatever feels good to them and is right in their own eyes.
Now in all reality, most people never voice those words and may not even allow themselves to “go there” in their mind, but those thoughts and motivations are there non-the-less. This is part of the humbling process that I described earlier. Christ set the example for us by taking on humanity, living among us without sin, dying a horrible, painful and humbling death on the cross for OUR sins. And then He had conquered death and eternal judgment for everyone and anyone that would acknowledge Him as Lord, confess their sins and follow Him.
In all fairness, I don’t think we can ask any more of Him than that. In fact, I am continually amazed that God would find any of us worth of that type of love and sacrifice. So after all of that, my hope for you is that if you haven’t made Him the Lord of your life that you will do so today.
Here’s a prayer that you can pray if you’d like.
Lord, I am not a perfect person and I haven’t lived a perfect life. I confess all of my sins to you and ask for your forgiveness. Thank you for dying for my sins and for your grace and mercy. Please come into my heart and help me to follow you all the days of my life. Amen.
Well, this post is starting to turn into a marathon so we can discuss the last two reasons in my next post. These next two reasons will probably have the greatest relevance to the greatest number of targeted parents coming to this site.
Until then, have a great day!