Another of the commonest mistakes people – believers and non-believers alike – make about God is this:
“If I can’t figure it out how it works, I don’t believe it.”
This manifests in a number of subjects such as
“God’s Sovereign Will vs. Personal Responsibility and Choice”
“God’s Creation of the Universe vs. Scientific concepts of ‘The Big Bang’ and ‘Evolution’ ” and,
“If God is good, why do I suffer?” (This is sometimes disguised as “Why do children die?” or “What about people in China going to Hell?”)
Consider this: How many things do any of us do everyday using artifacts and concepts we don’t understand?
Television, for instance. How many out there understand the underlying principles of how a television set works? A crucial underlying principle is Quantum Mechanics, which includes the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. Everyone is completely conversant with both QM and Uncertainty, right? Everyone has a total awareness of how images and sounds are codified into electronic data, transmitted through either cable or through the air and then decoded and presented through a screen and speakers.
But we all turn on the TV anyway.
Scientists deal with two major concepts in terms of the physical Universe: Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. However, no scientist has yet figured out how those two concepts – both fairly well understood in the scientific and technical world and used all the time – interact. They seem to be mutually exclusive. The quest for what Albert Einstein called the “Unified Field Theory” and more recently termed the “Theory of Everything” has been in progress since at least the early 1950s and much longer than that in different terms. Still no worky.
But most of modern technology hinges on those two concepts. The television, for one.
How about cars? How many folks know more about the mechanical operation of an automobile than “… put gas in and turn the key…”? I’m not even going to address the complications of turn signals, lane integrity and making turns. Doesn’t stop folks from driving, does it? (Whether some people should drive at all is another discussion. My blood pressure does not allow me to discuss that.)
Back to God. Does the question of God’s Sovereign Will ever stop anyone from ordering lunch at a restaurant? I must confess, I never agonize over the question of “Do I like steak because I like steak or because God ordained I like steak?” Nor do I spend hours in prayer every morning over the choice of socks to wear. I rather imagine not many others do either.
The Bible – Old and New Testaments – speaks of God’s Will being Sovereign. At the same time, the Bible speaks of man’s choices and the repercussions and penalties for sin. Since that is so, both must be important. Both must exist. The mere fact we do not completely understand how ‘both’ can be true – as it seems contradictory – does not change the reality.
Is a light photon – a single ‘bit’ of light – a particle or a wave function? The answer is ‘yes’. If light is measured or observed in one manner, light photons appear to be particles. F’rinstance, a sheet of paper will block light. This is to be expected if photons were particles. A solid object blocks passage, just like a sheet of paper will block small particles of sand. But, observed from a different perspective, a photon takes on the properties of a wave function. Check out the ‘two hole experiment’ if you don’t believe that.
The best science has been able to do so far is to suggest a photon might be a ‘wavicle’. That’s mostly a gag, as it does not explain why photons behave as they do. Want to hear something really screwy? A photon has no mass, but is affected by gravity.
Do you understand all that? Does that keep you from reading a book or seeing things, all because of light and light’s properties?
All this leads to the greatest mistake people make about God.
No one can have a working knowledge of God, who He is and why He does what He does, without a personal relationship with God. It’s like trying to determine the inner workings of – Charley Sheen – without ever having met him. One can observe many things about him from the news items, but without spending some time with him, no one can really claim to know him.
One can reasonably say, “Well, from what I’ve read of Sheen, I’m not interested in meeting him.” By the same token, one can also say “Well, from what I’ve read of God, I’m not interested in meeting him, either.”
The difference being Charley Sheen didn’t create and doesn’t maintain the Universe. Mr. Sheen is not the sole judge of my life.
God did, does and is.
I submit it is worth one’s while to fully encounter God and get to know Him. He’s really a pretty cool entity. Overwhelming, but cool.