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Why do we sometimes believe there is no God?
Requested and Answered by Billious-MicMek on 15-Jul-2005 23:53 (1569 reads)
Let’s begin with a little look at the past. If you surveyed all the civilisations and societies that have ever existed throughout the history of the world, you would find that nearly all of them believed in some form of higher power, a God or gods or at least supernatural beings that are greater than humans. It is common sense. Look at the world around you. Does it not suggest that someone thought about it carefully and made it that way?

Let’s turn to our own society today. As technology increases and takes over every part of our lives, many people are becoming more and more self-centred. Nobody wants to be told what to do. People want to decide for themselves what is right or wrong, following the idea of “if it feels good, do it?. So how does God fit into this picture? He may be all-good and love us heaps, but He will insist on telling us what’s right and wrong and making us feel guilty! There are only two ways of getting rid of this guilty feeling about sin: either get rid of the sin, or get rid the God who makes you feel guilty about it! In the past, people lived a life far closer to nature and they knew that their survival depends on the grace of God. So getting rid of God was not an option. But as we have become more and more separated from nature, we depend more and more on ourselves. So now it becomes ‘safer’ to say that God does not exist, and get away with it.

This lack of belief in God has become a very common outlook in western society today, and it’s spreading like wildfire. Some key people who hold this view are having a big impact on the rest of society. For example, the majority of people in the media and entertainment share this view, so they naturally let this view soak into everything they do. Many modern movies and TV shows are based on this philosophy. The majority of university professors also share this view, so they put immense pressure (knowingly or unknowingly) on their students to give up their belief in God in favour of ideas like evolution. Whole generations of youth are being influenced. It’s not surprising then that every now and then even a firm Christian may feel a bit lonely and start to question the existence of God. It is probably a normal stage of development in the spiritual life of many people.

Don’t be anxious. Millions of people before you have asked the same question yet found the answer to be overwhelmingly ‘yes’. God exists. There are so many reasons for believing in God that it needs a whole book to just give a summary of them all. They include things like:

i. something had to start this universe off, something totally outside the universe
ii. nature contains many, many wonders that all work together so beautifully – there must be an intelligent designer behind intelligent design
iii. the existence of life. Whilst a number of wild theories for how life began by itself have been put forward, none of them even come close to being possible!
iv. our personal spiritual experience of God and feeling His hand working on our lives
v. miracles that cannot be explained any other way

Some of the wisest and smartest of men have been (and are) believers in God. Great geniuses like Isaac Newton, Copernicus and Galileo were devout Christians. Albert Einstein, raised as a Jew, toyed with the idea that there is no God but quickly came to the realisation that this is ridiculous when you consider how beautifully the laws of nature work. He believed there must be a God who created it all. Even today, there are thousands and thousands of professors and scientists who believe in God. A world famous professor, Paul Davies, wrote a whole book about the subject. In it he outlines that even if you start by being an atheist, studying nature tells you HOW things work, but it cannot tell you WHY. Why is it that E=mc2, and not m2c? Who decided these laws in the first place? His book is called “The Mind of God?, since he acknowledges that there must be someone outside this universe who set these laws up.

Let me finish with a lovely story about the great genius, Sir Isaac Newton. It goes something like this: Newton had a friend who was an atheist, and they would often argue about it. So one day, Newton invited his friend to his house, left the door open and made sure he wasn’t home when his friend arrived. The man went in and decided to wait for Newton. As he strolled around, he came upon a beautifully made clockwork model of the solar system. The little planets all moved smoothly around the little sun and the tiny moon moved around the little earth – he was entranced by it!

Then Newton walked in. “My dear fellow,? exclaimed his friend, “that is the most remarkable model of the solar system I have ever seen! Where on earth did you buy it??
“Nowhere,? answered Newton calmly.
“Then it must have taken you months to make it!?
“I didn’t make it,? replied Newton.
“Then where did it come from??
“Oh, I just woke up one morning and found it there. I think it just grew out of that table all by itself,? said Newton, with a straight face.
“What! Why that’s preposterous, impossible! You’re making fun of me!?
“Oh,? said Newton, “you don’t believe me??
“Of course not!’ replied his friend. “I’d have to be an absolute idiot to believe a story like that!?
“You will not believe that this small model made itself,? said Newton, “yet you are quite willing to believe that the real solar system which is thousands of times bigger and more complicated just came about all by itself. Does that make sense to you??