God Exists, But Is He Good?

In last Saturday’s debate with apologist William Lane Craig, atheist Christoper Hitchens said at one point that even if God did exist, there is no evidence that He cares about His creation, that He isn’t indifferent to humanity.

It’s hard for me to entertain such thoughts because I have and believe the special revelation God gave, namely the Bible. Simply, I find the Bible to be consistent with what I see in the world. It fills in the gaps and makes sense of the confusing. And there is lots of evidence to support the claims of the Bible.

Yes, at some point, the veracity of the Bible needs to be considered. But there are some other indicators that God is good, that He cares, that He isn’t indifferent. One is Beauty. A sunset, the glint of light captured in a drop of dew, a horse galloping across the plains, a gnarled tree atop a mountain crag, an icy-green lake at the bottom of a glacier, white-capped waves crashing onto a beach, and on and on and on.

But not only is Beauty in this world, apparently humans, and humans alone have this appreciation of Beauty.

Then there is pleasure. The joy and pride a new father expresses as he holds his infant son for the first time. The taste of apple pie that floods the senses and reminds one of visits with Grandma, now long gone. The swelling music that pierces the heart simultaneously with longing and elation. Again, these emotional pleasures seem to be for Mankind alone.

How about love or hope or truth or courage or generosity? The very existence of these traits indicates a Creator who embodied them.

Another evidence that God cares is the existence of objective morality. Yes, this is an evidence of God’s existence but also of His goodness. An amoral first cause would not have the capacity to instill in Mankind that which it does not possess.

But, you might say, what then about the evil? What about the atrocities Man commits against Man. Do these then indicate a cruel creator?

No. They indicate contradiction. Because there is hate in the world doesn’t mean there isn’t love. Because there is death in nature doesn’t mean there isn’t life.

So either God is a contradiction or there is another cause for the evil and cruelty around us.

To understand the contradiction, I think Special Revelation is necessary.

Cultures throughout time have feared God or gods because of the destructive power in nature they saw and couldn’t explain. Today, scientists explain this destructive power, so they no longer fear God or gods. They dismiss the notion of the supernatural by way of solving the contradiction.

But of course that opens up another set of unanswered questions. Why don’t animals hate? Why do humans worship?

The “most evolved species” seems capable of both greater evil and greater good than any evolutionist ought to expect. And apart from God, there is no reasonable explanation.

Since God is not indifferent, since He does care, He didn’t leave Mankind in this quagmire. From the beginning of time on earth, He communicated with humans one way or another—first person to person, then through messengers, including His Son. In addition, He provided spirit-breathed written revelation. And He gave the incredible gift of His Spirit’s presence in the life of every person who confesses with his mouth and believes in his heart that Jesus is Lord.

The restoration of communion with God is the very point of Jesus’s death and resurrection. The saving we need is the saving of our relationship with our Creator. Without Him we are undone.

So is He good? He actually defines the word.

Published in: on April 10, 2009 at 11:37 am  Comments (5)  
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