Thoughts on Atheism and Faith: The Problem of Evil

Atheists are quick to point out the existence of evil as proof of the non-existence of a loving God, if any God at all.

The short argument goes like this: “If God is good, why would he allow babies to die?”

It’s a good question. Diseas, murder, mayhem, disaster, getting hit by a bus, …how could a loving God create such a world?

There’s an ocean of books on the subject. I read quite a few and even the ones I like are rather unsatisfactory. So here’s where I have come ashore on the problem of evil as evidence for the non-existence of God:

I believe the clock is ticking up, not down.

If you believe the clock is ticking down, —that life comes to an end, and that’s it, then I understand why you don’t believe in God. That kind of God would suck.

lewis1But I believe the clocking is ticking up… that physical death is not the final chapter in our lives. That God has more in store for us and every* soul than we can ever imagine, including babies.

I feel that is true, but more importantly, I must hope that it true, otherwise, death makes everything meaningless. Death renders right and wrong a moot point.  Whereas the painful experiences of life can point us.

Oddly enough, most atheists I know do not find solace in this “eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die” philosophy (which is from Ecclesiastes in the Bible, btw). And the few who do -tend to be self-centered and miserable.  Know quite a few people who call themselves Christians that act this way too, which is sad.

While it may be hard to believe in something that sounds extraordinarily wishful, personally, I would find it harder to live my life knowing all my choices are relative, and nothing really matters but trying to have a good time before its over.  Instead, I choose to believe that there is something to this extraordinary hunger that has ached in the human soul across the millenia.  That there is soul-shaper at the heart of the universe, for whom time is not ticking down, but up, -who gives life and renews life. Atheists believe this spiritual desire is the brain’s wishful thinking.  I believe it is a compass.godcompass

In First Corinthians 13 Paul addresses our INABILITY to completely understand the subject, and so redirects us to a topic more important than belief or hope, and that is love.

For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known.

And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.

Show me an atheist who’s way is love, and I will show you someone on the way to God.

-Neil MacQueen

Yes, I said “every” soul, ..even the souls of atheists. 
When our names are called up yonder, plan on being humbled by the discovery that the difference between atheists and believers from God’s perspective is humorously little. “All fall short,” said Paul. Thank God we get picked back up again, whether we believe it will happen, or not.


 

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