God – Part Six

The number of atheists (a = without; theos = god) and agnostics (a = without; gnosis = knowledge) has dramatically increased in recent years. The errors of such doctrine need to be refuted.

During the old USSR I shared with a hardened member of the KGB proof of God’s existence. As the conversation progressed I noticed a tear on his cheek and asked if I could help. He said no it was just that he had been reared in an atheistic country, and it saddened him to know God had been there all the time and no one ever told him, and not only was He there but that He loved him. He is representative of many in America.

Romans 1: 20 shouts of evidence of God: “Since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities… have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made.” Imagine a car existing without a designer and maker. Could a C-5 airplane rolling off the assembly line at Lockheed Georgia and it being argued it came into being as a result of an explosion in the storage building. If there is a C-5 there must be a designer and builder.

The very existence of our beautifully designed universe shouts there is a God, and Calvary shared His love.

In our court a criminal is found guilty under the law and sentenced to prison. For there to be a law there had to be a lawmaker. The laws of nature evidence a lawmaker.

When challenged to prove God’s existence, ask the enquirer to prove He does not exist. In doing so, keep in mind the law of logic which says you can’t prove a negative. You can’t prove words don’t exist without using words. You can’t prove God does not exist without using examples He does.

Objective truth would not exist were there no universal source of objectivity, no universal laws against evil such as murder and lying, no power of reason, and no laws of science. 

It is impossible for God not to exist. Without Him these things would not exist. The fact they do proves He does exist. This line of logic is known as “Transcendental Proof for the Existence of God.”

Truth proves God exists. Some claim there is no absolute truth, all is relative. This claim itself is an absolute truth proving absolute truth does exist. If absolute universal truth, such as the laws of math, science, and morality exist, there must be a universal source of truth. That source is God. There can be no truth without God. The fact that truth does exist is proof that God does.

If morality is based on consensus, the atrocities of ISIS must be considered acceptable because a consensus of a sect of Islam approves it. For truth and morality to exist it cannot be merely based on opinion, for opinions vary and are not absolute. Absolutes acclaim the existence of God.

Back to the KGB agent. Not only does God exist, He loves you. Why not love Him back?

God – Part Five

The law of design demands there to be a God. Simply stated, where there is design there must be a designer. Observe a watch. An elemental observation reveals it does specific things exactly. It was designed by a designer to do them. Expand the principle and observe the universe. There is an obvious design to it. Where there is design there has to be a designer.

Biology is brimming with observable laws of science. Where there is a law there must be a law giver. 

The Apostle John in writing about Jesus opened his gospel, “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 nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”

Dr. Robert Jastrow, one of the world’s greatest astronomers, in his book “God and the Astronomers” notes one of the most outstanding discoveries of modern astronomy is that the universe had a beginning. That requires a “Beginner.” He said it is as though, “The scientist has scaled the mountain of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak, and as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1: 1)

All of His planning and creating pales in light of His planning for us a way to enjoy eternal life.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” (John 3: 16, 17)

God, the creator became God the created in a stall in Bethlehem. To understand Him as the God/man-man/God requires deep thought. He was Immanuel, God with us. In the cradle in Bethlehem that little baby was God breathing air, God whimpering and crying, God cooing, and God smiling. He was God incarnate, God in flesh and blood.

The babe of Bethlehem made the straw on which He lay. He, in eternity leaned on the chest of His Father without any mother, in time leaned on the breast of His mother without any father. He was as old as His Father and eons older than His mother. He was Immanuel, God with us.

Of that birth Isaiah the prophet wrote: “For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given….” (Isaiah 8: 6)

The child was Mary’s baby. The Son was God’s only begotten. He was God incarnate, that is, God in flesh. That is a miracle far more miraculous than any of the scientific ones.

This was done in order that He, the innocent one, might give His life for us the guilty ones. In order that whosoever believes in Him enough to make Him their Lord and Master might be saved. That is God at His best.

God – Part Four

Don’t be surprised if you don’t understand all about God. No one ever has. If we could we would be as great as He and that would dramatically diminish Him.

Though we do not fully understand Him we can know Him. Some of His attributes help us to know Him.

One of the most mystifying aspects about God is where He is.  

His center is everywhere, His circumference is nowhere. 

He is present in each event, though His presence is not quite the same as the presence of physical beings. God does not have a body; He is immaterial.  He is the ultimate spirit being.

His omnipresence means He is all present. It enables Him to be present with all of us at all times. That defies our imagination.

There is no science that enables us to be in more than one space at the time.

The fact we can be at only one place at a time makes it all the more challenging to conceive of God as being at all places at one time.

God being all present at all times means nothing escapes His notice. The Psalmist confirms this, “Where can I go from your Spirit?  Where can I escape from your presence?” (Psalm 139: 7 – 18) Though we cannot look on the face of God He continually looks upon each of us. It means you are never alone.

Some people can amazingly multitask, that is do several things at one time. God is the ultimate multitasker. He can give personal attention to every person at once. 

God is not spatially limited. We categorize everything along a timeline: past present and future. God is eternal. He always has been and always will be. With Him there is no time He is the creator of all things and will be the consummation of all things. He is the beginning and will be the ultimate end.

God’s omnipresence is not just a theory. It is a foundational truth of redemption. Although we have sinned and deserve God’s judgment, God comes to his faithful people and declares to them “I will be with you.” This means that God is here, wherever we are, but also that God is on our side. He is with us, not to destroy us, but to forgive and to save us from sin. 

Historically God came to us physically in the person of Jesus to declare and demonstrate His presence, power. And love.

If you can’t fully comprehend His omnipresence, rejoice. If you could you would be as great as He and that would not be good. Conversely, He would be equal to you and that would not be good.

Because God is omnipresent, you and I are never alone. Jesus Christ promises to be with us always and everywhere (Matthew 28:18-20).

“The eyes of the Lord are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.” (Proverbs 15: 3)

Feel the Uplifting Power

His name was Mr. Smith. I learned it the hard way. One day I was hanging out the back window of the upstairs of my dad’s store. I saw him in the alley and called out to him, “How are you doing Cid?” No sooner had I done it until I heard my dad’s reprimanding voice saying, “His name is Mr. Smith to you, son.” It was a proper bit of instruction. To dad, his peer, he was Cid. To me, a juvenile, he was Mr. Smith. It was a short course in respect for your elders.

Cid, uh Mr. Smith, held a responsible role in our agrarian society. With all of the farm implements that need sharpening the blacksmith was a vital person.

He had what was to me an intriguing device, simple as it was. Keep in mind this was before the days of popular magnets and Etch-a-Sketch.

Because of the friendship between dad and Mr. Cid I was allowed on occasion to play with his magnet, the only one in town. Beneath his emery wheel there was on the table a pile of iron filings, each smaller than a grain of sand.

I learned that if the magnet was held a few inches above the iron filings the force field of the magnet would cause the filings to move slightly. As the magnet drew closer to the filings the more they moved. When I got the magnet where its force field had its power influential enough the filings would jump up to meet it. Over and over I played the game to see how close the magnet had to be before the filings were caught up in the air.

Even in my childish mind I could see the likeness of the iron filings responding to the magnet by being caught to meet it and the second coming of Jesus. Every evidence is that we who know Jesus as savior will be caught up to meet him in the air. What a day that will be!

With the evidence of His coming ever nearer the more active we should be to His influence on us.

Scholars have identified 1,845 different biblical references to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ in the Bible. In the Old Testament, no less than seventeen books mention Christ’s return. The New Testament authors speak of it in 23 of the 27 books. Seven out of ten chapters in the New Testament refer to His return.

Bible scholars in considering the signs of His coming say all essential signs that are to precede His coming have been fulfilled. There is just enough time to prepare. Live with that expectation and be motivated by it to be and do your best in all things in order to be ready. 

Belief in the second coming  of Jesus should be a stimulus to joy, and discipline. Jesus has said, “I will come again…” As certainly as He came to Bethlehem He will come again to the Mount of Olives.

As He came to die so He will come to reign.

As He came to be crucified so He will come to be crowned.

You can almost hear the trumpet sound. Yet, He may delay another two thousand years. He may not. Regardless there is no disappointment in being ready.

The Wonderful You

Some stories are better appreciated if understood as occurring in the juvenile life of the storytellers, not his adult self. Remember, adolescence is about digging out the gold in the goal. Before reading further please promise to do so.

I had become obsessed with the role of Tarzan as played by Johnny Weissmuller in movies. I had to try my best to replicate the role, “Me Tarzan.” I put on my belt, pulled a towel between my legs, tucked the ends under my belt in the front and back and let the ends flap over. It was a perfect loin cloth.

On Cemetery Road there were three pine trees growing in a row. The forthcoming action involved “Tarzan” getting in the top of tree number one, starting it to sway enough to project him to tree number two, and then number two propelling him to tree number three. The sway action was even better than imagined as it easily propelled Tarzan 6 or 8 feet to the top of tree number two. Looking good. The problem was Tarzan and the loin cloth were in different trees. The loin cloth was still at the top of tree number one. Oops. It got caught on tree number one.

Jane was nowhere around… fortunately. Unfortunately a funeral procession came by. Tarzan was frozen trying not to be seen. Evidently he was successful in avoiding sight or there would have been laughter even around the grave site.

Tarzan was mortified as he retrieved the towel, wrapped himself in it, and made his way home, resolute on never playing the role again.

The moral of the story: don’t pretend to be who you are not. If you do, you are sure to be exposed.

True joy is found in being the original you, not a pretentious counterfeit. God had something good in mind when he created you. Don’t deny it by pretending to be something or someone else and robbing the world of you.

May this apothegm by Ralph Waldo Emerson remind you of life’s bounty when you are the best you, you were created to be. “This is my wish for you: Comfort on difficult days, smiles when sadness intrudes, rainbows to follow the clouds, laughter to kiss your lips, sunsets to warm your heart, hugs when spirits sag, beauty for your eyes to see, friendships to brighten your being, faith so that you can believe, confidence for when you doubt, courage to know yourself, patience to know the truth, Love to complete your life.” May this postscript enrich it all: May you have the faith in Jesus needed by you to enjoy life here and hereafter.

I hope you are living a life you will be proud of and the Lord pleased with. If not, it is not too late, start today becoming the most accurate person you were created with the capacity to be. If not, I hope you have love strong enough to turn to Jesus and embrace Him as Savior. 

Jesus warned against the eternal consequence of pretending to be what you are not in the faith. “ “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.”