The Heart Of Disbelief

A new movie has been recently released, entitled, “The Atheist Delusion” http://www.atheistmovie.com . I haven’t seen it, but the trailer is quite intriguing and got me to thinking.

Reading holy Scripture makes it obvious to me now that everything that can be known about God has been clearly shown, so that those who deny the existence of God are without excuse. And also, because Scripture reveals God’s truth, there is no excuse for those who, while they may believe in God, place him into a box of their own understanding. Yet, I did not always see it that way.

Despite the confused and deconstructed thinking of postmodern secular world views, truth is not relative. It is absolute — not because I say it is, but because the Creator of the universe says it is. The gospel of John begins,

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.

This was the “knocking on the door” (Revelation 3:20) that led me to open and allow Christ to enter my life. That’s symbolic language, because it attempts to express what is essentially a mystery. John 1:12 says,

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.

Again, the mysterious symbolism of being born again. When the disciples of Jesus asked him why he spoke in parables, instead of speaking plainly, he said, “This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.” and “For this people’s heart has grown dull, and with their ears they can barely hear, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart and turn, and I would heal them.”

In order to be receptive to the truth of Christ, a person’s heart must be right with God. It is the honest, sincere condition of a person’s heart that allows him to see, hear and understand the truth. It isn’t simply a matter of their physical eyes, ears or brains. That is why when Jesus was before Pilate, he said, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”

Here is the truth:

Nothing made God — certainly not the creative imagination of any mere human being.
He is self-existent and eternal, beyond human understanding, beyond human control, higher and greater than I am.
No, I did not make God in my image. He made me in his image.
All that I am able to do comes directly from his intention and design.
He is the potter. I am the clay.
I am subject to his authority and judgement. He is not subject to mine.
He is the Creator, not me.

When humanity was first created, we were free — free to love God and the beauty of all his creation, free to love one another, and have open fellowship with our Creator because he first loved us. But we fell into sin, causing the entire world to fall with us, because of our childish, self-centered disobedience. In our foolishness, we chose rebellion against God over submission to his perfect wisdom. We brought sin into God’s perfect garden, and so it is our sin that pollutes the world.

Because of his infinite compassion, mercy, love and forgiveness, God invites us to leave that sin behind and return to him. He invested centuries with Israel, establishing a covenant with them designed to overcome the sin that separates us from him. But Israel continually violated their covenant with God. They proved that because of our sinful nature, human beings will never live up to God’s righteous standards. Thus 1 Corinthians 10:11 tells us, “Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.”

Sin separates us from God, and separation from God is death — eternal death. So God gave us the perfect sacrifice for all sin — the perfect fulfillment of his covenant with Israel. Instead of endless sacrifices being made for endless sins, without any real change in us, God offers his perfect sacrifice for our sins so that we shall no longer be separated from him, but reunited in fellowship with him and alive in him (and he in us) forever.

God has done this to save us from the consequences of our own sin, and yet many in their foolishness refuse to admit to their own culpability and continue to blame God for every bad thing that happens in this fallen world. They either blame God for evil or use the presence of evil as evidence that God does not exist — anything to avoid their own accountability to their Creator. The flip side to this blame game is utopian thinking, which makes the basic assumption that humanity can not only fix the problems of the world, but make life perfect on our own, without God’s intervention. This is the ultimate delusion of self-determinism.

God loves you. He created you. He desires fellowship with you. He has gifts he wants to bless you with. It was for freedom that Christ has set us free. Jesus said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” This truth is not hidden. God reveals it in his holy Scripture to anyone who is open to read it and study it. His word says that he is calling us and even knocking at the door of our hearts. He does not desire to remain separated from us, but offers communion with all who will receive him — the Creator of the universe desires a personal, loving, forgiving relationship with you.

It has been said, “Wise men still seek him.” Will you seek him today? Will you stop ignoring him and read his word? Try starting with the Gospel of John in the New Testament. That’s the door that opened the kingdom of heaven for me. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” 2 Chronicles 15:2 adds, “…but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.”

God wants to bless you, but he’s waiting for you to act because he gave you free will. Seeking him requires an act of your will. You can either seek him or find any number of ways to resist him. What will you do?

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About retiredday

I am Michael D. Day, a regular, everyday guy -- retired. I stand for God-given freedom, which means I think for myself. I believe in being civil, because the Bible teaches that we should love our enemies. But I also believe in saying it how I see it, and explaining just why I see it that way, sort of like 2 Timothy 4:2.
This entry was posted in Atheism, Belief in God, Bible, Christian Faith and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to The Heart Of Disbelief

  1. messiah gate says:

    The Sunday, go-to-meet’n pastor could not have said it better.

    Like

  2. And then there’s the other view, what if the bible is just a made up book of stories? Then , all bets are off.

    Like

    • retiredday says:

      It tickles me when people toss off comments like this, as if the question of the authority of the Bible is just a simple matter of a person’s preference, a feeling, an arbitrary choice no different from how one might decide on what brand of detergent to buy or what meal to order at the corner cafe. This mental shrugging, this tilting of the arms from side to side, this comme ci comme ça is too trivializing to be of any serious discussion. I cannot take seriously anyone who supposedly questions the authority of the Bible, and yet is not willing to come to a reasoned conclusion based on actual investigation.

      It is wholly disingenuous and intellectually deficient to ask the question, “What if the Bible is just a made-up book of stories?” And yet fail to actually do the research to answer the question. The reality is that people who ask this question do so rhetorically. Thinking themselves wise, they presume the position of, “Don’t confuse me with the facts. I’ve already made up my mind.”

      To someone like myself, who has made a study of it, who has looked into the evidence and read books by scholars about the reliability, historicity and authority of the Bible, people who throw out these kinds of rhetorical questions don’t really want an answer. They don’t want to have God’s authority over them because they want to be their own god. They want total control, and the only way they can maintain that is to pretend that their delusion is the truth.

      When Jesus told Pilate that he came to testify to the truth, Pilate could have cared less. He didn’t want to know the truth. His question, “What is truth?” was rhetorical. Read the text. It says that after asking the question, he immediately left. He didn’t wait for an answer because he didn’t want to know the truth. He had already made up his mind.

      Those who are deceived simply are not open to the truth. They may be “betting” on their world view, but to me it is clear that the question of eternal life vs. eternal separation from God isn’t something worth gambling on.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. messiah gate says:

    Intellectual laziness, hardness of heart, delusion (whether by the world or self), or maybe, even, all-consuming, self-indulgence might explain a person’s unbelief.

    Geneticist and head of the National Institutes of Health, Francis S. Collins, was the director of the Human Genome Project. He was an atheist who believed that Christianity was based upon irrational arguments.

    After sequencing 3.3 billion pairs of nucleotides, Collins decided that life was, indeed, a miracle:

    “At the most fundamental level, it’s a miracle that there’s a universe at all.”

    Collins wrote about his faith experience in a book titled, “The Language of God”. He then founded BioLogos which is an organization of scientists who have come to faith through the process of their discoveries.

    Collins wrote:

    “Science and faith can actually be mutually enriching and complementary once their proper domains are understood and respected. There are some really important questions that science cannot really answer, such as, why is there something instead of nothing? Why are we here? In those domains, I have found that faith provides a better path to answers.”

    He said that he came from a family of agnostics, but college taught him how to be an atheist.

    “When I got to college and was challenged about what my beliefs were, I realized I had no idea what they were. I listened to others make an argument that religion and beliefs were basically a superstition, and I began to think — Yeah, that’s probably what I believe, too.”

    “I had made a decision to reject any faith view of the world without ever really knowing what it was that I had rejected. And that worried me. As a scientist, you’re not supposed to make decisions without the data. It was pretty clear I hadn’t done any data collecting here about what these faiths stood for.”

    “The idea that you would arrive at faith because it made sense, because it was rational, because it was the most appropriate choice when presented with the data, that was a new concept.”

    He said it wasn’t easy to embrace his new-found faith. He had to shed his scientific prejudice. What helped to ease his transition was a book by C. S. Lewis, “Mere Christianity”.

    Collins made his total commitment to God while hiking in the Cascade mountains. As he stood in awe of God’s creation he said, “Yes,” to God and “never looked back.”

    His experience was evidence of Romans 1:20 …

    “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood from His workmanship, so that men are without excuse.”

    The existence of God can be seen all around us — if one has eyes to see.

    Collins said the most affirming evidence for God and the Bible is Moral Law:

    “After 28 years as a believer, the Moral Law stands out for me as the strongest signpost of God.”

    It has been my experience that unbelievers want to live by their own rules, to do their own thing; but to do so with a clear conscience they have to dismiss the authority, or existence of God by whom we discern these absolute truths.

    Liked by 1 person

    • retiredday says:

      I totally agree. According to the article at http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/134672-harvard-cracks-dna-storage-crams-700-terabytes-of-data-into-a-single-gram “A bioengineer and geneticist at Harvard’s Wyss Institute have successfully stored 5.5 petabits of data — around 700 terabytes — in a single gram of DNA, smashing the previous DNA data density record by a thousand times.” This “data” is real information about the genetic make-up of the body and it happens to come in the form of an actual language. The “logic” that argues this language evolved with host organisms as they became increasingly complex fails at every level. It is baseless and meaningless. The designs for all living organisms are spelled out in their DNA. Godless thinkers are at a total loss to explain the language of DNA because its language is the product of intelligence — the intelligence of the Creator. A scientist would have to be pretty unscientific to deny that.

      Like

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