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Thursday, May 15, 2014

Is God involved in what's going on down here?

In remarks directed at my Mother's Day comments, "The Skeptic" wrote: "Objective observation shows no 'affection', 'fondness', 'faithfulness' or any other involvement by God. While I don't claim to have the answer, evidence suggest either the Atheists or the Deists have got it right. God is just plain not involved in the present happenings on planet earth." --http://otagosh.blogspot.com/2014/05/why-do-people-leave-church.html

What about that? Is God a remote, indifferent, uncaring entity that has absolutely no involvement in what's happening on earth?

The answer depends on who you ask! We all form our beliefs based on hearsay, experiences and observations. As hearsay is generally regarded as being inadmissible in a court of law, we will dispense with it here - We will ignore what Scripture has to say about the subject (even though the original post was based on Scripture).

First, isn't it just a little arrogant to suggest that anyone who observes God as being affectionate, caring and faithful is being subjective? Couldn't I turn around and say that anyone who fails to observe these qualities in the Divine is being subjective?

The Skeptic says that an objective observation of the evidence demonstrates none of these qualities. In other words, when this person looks at what we know about the history of this planet, he/she doesn't see any evidence that God has demonstrated these qualities. Indeed, he/she implies that the available evidence hasn't even demonstrated that God exists.

This individual implies that things like the Big Bang, Inflation and the formation of galaxies, stars and planets do not demonstrate anything about the Creator (if the Creator even exists!) Apparently, the Skeptic sees the formation and evolution of life on this planet in a similar fashion - that none of it gives us any insight into God. The Skeptic appears to dismiss the extinction of the dinosaurs, climatic changes and the relatively recent arrival of humans on the surface of this globe as indicative of absolutely nothing about the character or nature of our Creator. Likewise, he/she implies that a review of the rise and fall of empires, religious and political institutions, the course of wars and the rise of technology have nothing to teach us about the Divine. The Skeptic appears to believe that famine, disease, storms, earthquakes and random strikes by meteors are evidence of God's indifference or nonexistence.

I, however, look at the exact same evidence and see God's fingerprints on a great many of the events that have transpired down through the ages. It's all a matter of perspective and how one interprets the evidence at our disposal. For me, these events demonstrate active involvement by the Creator. When I look at the beautiful world around me and consider all of the things that went on before my arrival here, I am in awe of the Creator's compassion, patience and concern for us. For me, a calm, rational and objective review of the evidence demonstrates God's existence and involvement in the Universe and this world. It really is a matter of perspective!

Relative to personal experience, I haven't walked a mile in the Skeptic's shoes. I don't know what this person has witnessed in his/her lifetime. If I had lost a child in a tornado or witnessed my mother succumb to cancer, I might respond differently to our question. Each of us brings a whole host of personal experiences to the formation of our beliefs. My personal experience includes miraculous protection from a tornado, healing, supernatural experiences, inspiration and extraordinary events too numerous to mention here. These experiences are my evidence of God's care and concern. For others, the same events would seem like random, coincidental and meaningless events that demonstrate nothing about God.

How you answer our question depends on you - on your perspective - on the way that you evaluate/interpret the evidence. So please don't pretend that your answer was obtained in a fashion that is any more objective than the way I reached mine! The Skeptic claimed that he/she didn't have the answer, but didn't he/she provide his/her answer to our question when stating "God is just plain not involved in the present happenings on planet earth."

The Skeptic's answer to our question is different from mine, but it is not superior to or better than mine. Aren't we all objective and subjective when we answer questions like this one?

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