Monday, June 10, 2013

Who is God?

“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” - Richard Dawkins

“I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own -- a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty. Neither can I believe that the individual survives the death of his body, although feeble souls harbor such thoughts through fear or ridiculous egotisms.” - Albert Einstein


As I read through some of the things folks in the past and at present have said about God, I was deeply saddened.  Without knowledge of the Creator, they are hopeless.  The chief aim of their lives is to do anything they can to please themselves.  Even though some of them claim there is no God, they seem so full of hatred toward God that they contradict themselves in their belief in his existence.

I am not a Biblical scholar, but I know God.  I can see him at work.  Things happen that have no scientific or worldly explanation.  Lives are transformed, lives that, according to society, have no redeeming qualities?  Did they make the change with themselves?  Read the story of Johnny Lee Clary, former Imperial Wizard of the KKK.

He says, "God is love."  The only reason any of us have the capacity to love in any form is because we are created in the image of God.  God is love.  If it weren't for God, well, we wouldn't be here.  If, though, there were a way for us to be here without God, we would certainly not love each other.  We would all do whatever pleased us at the time, whatever felt good.  When we try to live without God, this is what we do.  We please ourselves, rather than our Creator.  How many stories have you heard of people who have all the success they ever wanted, ever could have dreamed about having, but still feel empty?  Why do you suppose that is?  They are missing that relationship with God.  They are not missing religion; they are missing relationship.

Religion is a set of rules; religion is tradition.  A relationship with Christ is neither of those things.  It is full of love and understanding.  We screw up, but God loves us still.  Think about your love for your kids.  When they do something bad, you still love them, right?  So it is with God.  We do not have to prove ourselves to him.  We do not have to live a perfect life.  We can't.  But, because we love Christ, we choose to please Him.  

Oh, you don't believe in Christ?  If the Bible isn't enough proof of his existence, there are historical, nonreligious documents that prove his existence.  Check out  This appears to be a good article with examples of historical sources proving Christ's existence.  Atheists and agnostics who have studied the Bible to disprove it become convinced of its veracity and become believers.  Why do you think this is?  It is because it is true; it is life changing truth.

The quote by Albert Einstein above is sadly flawed in its philosophy.  God's purposes are NOT modeled after our own.  God is not a reflection of human frailty.  If you imagine God a certain way in your mind, then I suppose his purposes would be modeled after our own and would be a reflection of human frailty, but the God I know, the One True God, is perfect.  He is constant.  His attributes NEVER change.  The person who truly knows God allows his life to be directed by the purposes of God.  He does not put God in a box, for God could never fit inside any box our finite minds could imagine.  

I feel sorry for Richard Dawkins.  He does not know God.  Supposing he actually read the Bible, the only thing he got from it is that God is petty and unjust, a megalomaniac and a malevolent bully.  Certainly, the Old Testament is hard to take at times.  God did allow groups of people to die.  He did allow the Israelites to wander in the desert for 40 years.  There are so many stories to read which could allow us to characterize God like Dawkins has, but I wonder if he has read Psalms or if he has read John 3:16.  "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whoever should believe in him will not perish but have eternal life."  Does this sound like a petty, unloving bully?  

Don't blindly deny God's existence.  Search the Scripture for yourself - the whole Scripture.  You will find a God of love and second chances.  Oh wait, more like infinite chances to turn back to him.  You run out of chances when you die.  God is full of mercy and grace.  He heals, protects, and trusts.  He keeps no record of our wrongs.  Contrast this with Satan who is always throwing our past sins back in our faces.  God does not envy; he has no need to.  He is kind and patient.  The list could go on and on.  One thing he is not, and that is anything evil.  If a word pops into your mind to describe God and it is not a way in which you would want to be described, it is certainly not a word that can be used to describe God.  If you want to describe God in this way, then you don't really know him.

Here are some quotes from folks who know God:

"“The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us.” - C.S. Lewis

“Stop asking God to bless what you're doing. Find out what God's doing. It's already blessed.” - Bono

“Any faith that must be supported by the evidence of the senses is not real faith.” - A. W. Tozer

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