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People who reject God

 

 

If we take a look at the Acts of the Apostles, we can see in chapter 13, how Paul’s own people rejected the Gospel, Christ, and the possibility of turning to God. People of that time didn’t think much of the gift that is the eternal life, which was offered to them. They took a negative attitude towards the idea that one could join the kingdom of God through His Son, Jesus Christ:

 

- (Acts 13:45,46) But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spoke against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.

46 Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing you put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, see, we turn to the Gentiles.

 

Many people of today also reject God and Christianity. We have been headed to a direction over the last couple of hundred years, where the fundamental truths of Christianity have been questioned to a growing extent. The Book of Genesis, especially, has been under fire. People have thought that if Darwin’s evolution theory is an accurate depiction of the past, then the Bible cannot be true. This is a fairly logical conclusion, because two completely opposing views cannot simultaneously be true.

After Darwin’s theory was adopted, there have been many other views that have obscured people’s perceptions of Christian faith. There has been a slow change that is if we go back just a few decades, schools and societies were teaching more about Christianity. The fundamentals of it were clear to people and Christian teaching was respected.  Now people have slowly quit teaching about Christianity and it has become more questionable to teach it. Change towards the current state has been going on the whole time.

On the next rows we will discuss some fundamental truths of Christianity and reasons to why people reject the Gospel about Jesus Christ and eternal life. The purpose of this is to get people to better understand these fundamental truths and that they would one day be able to join the kingdom of God. We will discuss the following topics:

 

• Creation and the beginning

• What comes after this life?

• Moral questions

• Get to terms with God

 

CREATION AND THE BEGINNING. When it comes to the accuracy of creation, everyone knows that atheist scientists don’t believe in it. They don’t believe that God exists, that He created all and everything and especially that creating everything would have taken a little time and happened around some thousands of years ago. Instead, these scientists believe that the universe came into existence by itself from nothing and that all current species derive from one single original cell. These are in summary the basic assumptions, which these scientists believe in.

What about the rationality of these explanations? If these materialistic accounts are true, our scientists should provide explanations to the following questions. They should be easy to answer, provided that these are scientific theories.

 

How could anything come out of nothing? Scientists should be able to tell us, how it is possible that something comes out of nothingness, as is presumed in the Big Bang theory. This notion goes against the laws of physics and common sense.  Never has anyone seen stones, rocks, street signs or any other objects appear from nothing. Why would the universe, which is immensely larger than anything else, would make an exception? Why would the universe be able to appear out of nothing, when we haven’t witnessed it happen with any other object or matter? Scientists don’t look at this with their common sense, and thus rely on fiction if they believe these theories. It is insane to stick with this kind of false theory, which suggests that everything came out of nothing for no reason at all. Furthermore, it would be a mathematical impossibility. If there is nothing, then nothing can come out of it by itself. If you divide zero with any given number, the result will always be zero. David Berlinski, a mathematician, and Roland Nash have stated their opinions on the matter:

 

”It is pointless to argue that something comes into existence out of nothing, when any given mathematician understands this to be complete nonsense” (Ron Rosenbaum: ”Is the Big Bang Just a Big Hoax? David Berlinski Challenges Everyone.” New York Observer 7.7.1998)

 

Philosopher Roland Nash: …one does not need to be a theist (one that believes in God) to see the problem in understanding or accepting the belief that the universe came into existence without any reason and out of nowhere. (1)

 

Many other researchers question the whole Big Bang theory. They think it goes against real science. What best describes the situation is, when some secular researcher, who doubted Big Bang, wrote an open letter to the New Science magazine in 2004. There were over hundred other cosmologists, who supported the letter. This is what was on the letter: “There is a lack of open exchange in ideas, and there’s no tolerance towards suspicion and dissidence. There are no other areas of physics, where one could constantly rely on new hypothesis, in order to close gaps between theory and observations.”

The following comments also show how Big Bang is a questionable concept. One should not fall for it:

 

New data differs enough from the theory’s prediction to destroy the Big Bang-cosmology (Fred Hoyle, The Big Bang in Astronomy, 92 New Scientist 521, 522-23 / 1981)

 

As an old cosmologist, I see the current observational data repealing theories about the beginning of the universe, and also the many theories about the beginning of the Solar System. (H. Bondi, Letter, 87 New Scientist 611 / 1980)

 

There has been considerably little discussion about the possibility of the Big Bang theory… many of the observations that conflict it are explained through numerous unfounded assumptions or they are simply ignored. (nobelisti [nobelist] H. Alfven, Cosmic Plasma 125 / 1981)

 

Physicist Eric Lerner: ”Big Bang is merely an interesting tale, which is maintained for a certain reason” (Eric Lerner: A Startling Refutation of the Dominant Theory of the Origin of the Universe, The Big Bang Never Happened, NY: Times Books, 1991).

 

How did life get started? Scientists should also be able to tell us, how life began by itself. Life cannot be everlasting, because the Sun has not always existed. And without the Sun earth’s temperature would be almost at -273 Celsius degrees, all water would be frozen and it would be dark everywhere. Life would not be able to survive in those kinds of conditions.

Hence, when people admit that life has had a beginning, they should also provide us concrete evidence, which would prove that life really did begin to exist by itself. If no one can come up with an explanation, then why do so-called science books still say that life came about by itself, despite, everything? Isn’t that a conscious lie and an assumption that is based on wishful thinking?

This notion also goes against what we’ve been able to scientifically observe, which is that the existence of every plant and animal is dependent on previous life. They don’t exist because of themselves, as life can only come from an already existing life. No one has found any exceptions to this rule, so it must clearly suggest that our planet has an external source (in terms of first plants and animals), which is God. That is why naturalistic theories are built on weak foundations. The more knowledge we have acquired, the more difficult it has become for us to solve the problem with life coming into existence by itself. The only reasonable explanation to the existing life would be that God created it, which is what the following passages suggest. Only an almighty God can and could have created all this diverse life that we have on our planet:

 

- (Gen 1:1) In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

 

- (Rom 1:19,20) Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God has showed it to them.

20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse

 

- (Rev 4:11) You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for you have created all things, and for your pleasure they are and were created.

 

- (Rev 10:5,6) And the angel which I saw stand on the sea and on the earth lifted up his hand to heaven,

6 And swore by him that lives for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer

 

- (Rev 14:7) Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.

 

Stanley Miller’s statement allows us to better understand the problem with life beginning by itself. Miller has become famous for his experiments concerning the origin of life, and these experiments have been discussed in thousands of books. However, later in life he admitted in an interview that science may never find a solution to this problem:

 

He was indifferent about all suggestions about the origins of life, considering them “nonsense” or “paper chemistry”. He was so contemptuous about certain hypotheses that when I asked his opinion about them, he only shook his head, sighed deeply and sniggered – like trying to reject the madness of the human race. He admitted that scientists may never know exactly when and how life started. “We try to discuss a historical event that is clearly different from normal science”, he noted. (2)

 

Where are the transitional forms? In the preface we mentioned, how many doubt Christianity due to Darwin. They think that if what Darwin says is right, then the Book of Genesis must be wrong. They believe that life developed from a simple original cell into our current diverse forms.

However, these people ought to question Darwin and the prerequisite for his evolution theory, which is the idea that our current diverse plants and animals all derive from the same simple original cell. It’s not that Darwin didn’t make precise and exquisite observations. Surely he did, but his basic assumption (from simple to diverse) still remains unproven. Darwin’s examples (finches’ beaks etc.) and examples proposed today (the immunity of bacteria etc.) are only cases where variation occurs only within the created-kinds. It is not the same, as in the from-simple-to-diverse theory. Variation does occur, but it seems to happen only within set parameters. Mutation experiments that have lasted for decades have confirmed the constancy of species. Breeding has also shown that variation has its limits, which are quickly met and cannot be crossed.

How about transitional forms in fossils and in current species? Scientists should be able to show us these transitional forms that exist between fossils, and their semi-developed wings, arms, legs, senses and other organs. Provided that Darwin’s theory holds true, we should be able to find plenty of these transitional forms in the nature and in fossils (over one hundred million fossils have been dug up from the ground so far).

The problem is that we don’t see them, because species are fully complete.

Even Richard Dawkins, who is a well-known atheist scientist, has admitted that current structures are adequate for their purpose and organisms are fully functional, without being partially developed. Dawkins’ comment strongly suggests towards creation and that species have been complete from the beginning and not just partially developed. Why else are we only seeing complete and functioning structures in fossils and in the current nature?

 

The reality based on observations is that every species and every organ inside a species that so far has been examined is good at what it does. The wings on birds, bees and bats are good for flying. Eyes are good at seeing. Leaves are good at photosynthesis. We live on a planet, where we are surrounded by perhaps ten million species, which all independently indicate a strong illusion of apparent design. Every species fits well into its special lifestyle. (3)

 

The following statements describe well the absence of transitional forms. They discuss what evidence natural history museums have for evolution, or more precisely, what they don’t have:

 

Dr. Etheridge, world-famous curator of the British Museum: In this whole museum, there is not even the smallest thing that would prove the origin of species from intermediate forms. The theory of evolution is not based on observations and facts. As comes to speaking about the age of the human race, the situation is the same. This museum is full of evidence showing how mindless these theories are. (4)

 

None of the officials in five large paleontological museums can present even one simple example of an organism that could be regarded as a piece of evidence of gradual evolution from one species to another. (Dr. Luther Sunderland’s summary in his book Darwin's enigma. He interviewed many representatives of natural history museums for this book and wrote to them aiming at finding out what sort of evidence they had to prove evolution. [5])

 

The following statement will continue on the issue at hand. Late Dr. Colin Patterson was an older paleontologist for the British Museum (natural history) – he was also a supporter of evolution and a fossil expert. He wrote a book about evolution – but when someone asked him, why his book didn’t contain any pictures of transitional forms (organisms in the intermediate state), he wrote the following response. In this response he refers to atheist scientist Stephen J. Gould, who is possibly the most famous paleontologist:

 

"I agree completely with your opinion concerning the lack of illustrations in my book about organisms which are evolutionarily in the transitional stage. If I were conscious of any such, of a fossil or of living, I would have willingly included them in my book. You propose that I should use an artist to illustrate such intermediate forms but from where would he get information for his drawings? Honestly saying, I could not offer him this information, and if I should leave the matter for an artist, would it not lead the reader astray?

   I wrote the text of my book four years ago [in the book he tells that he believes in some intermediate forms]. If I were to write it now, I think that the book would be rather different. Gradualism (changing gradually) is a concept in which I do believe. Not just because of the prestige of Darwin but because my comprehension of the genetics seems to require it. However, it is difficult to claim against [famous fossil expert Stephen J.] Gould and other people of the American museum when they say that there are no intermediate forms. As a palaeontologist, I work much with philosophical problems when recognizing ancient forms of organisms from the fossil material. You say that I should also at least 'present a photo of a fossil, from which the certain organism group evolved.' I speak directly – there is no fossil that would be a watertight piece of evidence." (6)

 

WHAT COMES AFTER THIS LIFE? Creation was the first pivotal subject we discussed above. It is one of the fundamental teachings in Christianity, and it has been attacked many times ever since Darwin came up with his evolution theory. However, existing evidence much rather suggests towards creation, rather than towards any naturalistic theories. None of the scientific observations to our knowledge support the option that the universe and life would have came about by themselves from nothing. Also, we have not been able to prove the theory that all current species would have descended from a shared original cell. It is wise not to fall for these naturalistic theories, which don’t even have proper evidence.

Another crucial matter everyone should think about is what comes after this life? There are three common views regarding this, which all contradict each other. It is likely that you believe in one of them. The said views are as follows:

 

1. We will be reborn here on Earth again and again. Moreover, according to some teachings, we can spend some time as spirits on the other side in the betweens of our rebirths.

2. Another option is that life ends in death, meaning that when the body dies, everything ends. There is nothing after that. This view is favored by atheists.

3. The third view is that after death life will go on in another form. It is also what the New Testament teaches us, because dozens if not even hundreds of passages talk about it.

 

What is your opinion on the matter; which theory do you believe? Everyone might have their own personal favorite, but I doubt the truth will bend to our liking. After all, it is all about the absolute truth and not all options can be true at the same time. That is why we’ll be looking at each of these options separately.

 

1. Are we reborn on Earth time and again? If we consider option number one, it contains one unsolved problem. That fact alone makes this view questionable. The problem is that if we have lived here on Earth before or as spirits on the other side, then why don’t we remember anything from those times? It should be a personal experience for everyone, but why does our memory not work? In our current life we are able to remember thousands of events, but nothing from previous lives. This would suggest that there hasn’t been anything before this life. It must be a fraudulent belief, as there is no concrete evidence. Even the founder of Theosophical Society, H.B. Blavatsky, who was possibly the most influential person at popularizing the rebirth doctrine in Western countries during the 19th century, also admitted that she didn’t have any recollections of her previous lives.

 

2. Life ends in death. Another option is that life ends after we die. However, those who believe in this cannot prove it. They don’t have any personal information about it, because it is their unproved belief. This belief is based on a naturalistic world view, where matter is all that exists. That is why they don’t consider it possible that life could continue in any kind of form after the body’s death. For the same reason, these people don’t usually believe in God or in the existence of spirit world. 

On the other hand, if life truly does go on after death and we really are eternal beings, then these people are not well prepared for the future at all. They are taking quite the risk. It’s as if they’re venturing into the unknown or going on a long trip without knowing any of the dangers that might lie ahead.

 

3. Life goes on. If the two options above are false, then the only option left is that humans are eternal beings and life continues after we die. Think about it! It is very likely that we are eternal beings, because we’ve not been able to prove the former views. And this view is also represented in many religions. For example, Buddhists and Muslims also believe in the existence of hell.

Is it possible to prove eternity then? Not directly. However, people’s experiences from the verge of death give us a heavy reason to take this seriously. Many have described how they have seen their bodies being operated during a surgery, or resuscitation when their heart has stopped. It suggests the soul is a separate entity to the body.

People who have not just been close to death, but actually been dead for a longer time, provide us more convincing experiences. One such experience can be found in the book Like a mighty wind, by Mel Tari. The book tells about a person, who was dead for a few days and had their body already smelling, due to tropical conditions in Indonesia. This person, who rose from the dead, told about heaven and hell:

 

When we arrived, we noticed that there were over a thousand people. The deceased had been dead for two days and had begun to smell heavily. In our tropical land, the dead start to rot six hours after death. But after two days – oh, it is almost impossible to be closer than thirty metres from the body. The smell is awful. In America, you cannot understand this because your funerals are organized so well. But they also cost you 2,000 dollars. In Indonesia we do not have the possibility to make the dead look attractive. The local dead look terrible two days after death. (…)

   We went and stood around this dead man. We started to sing. (…)

   Nothing happened even after the fifth song. But during the sixth song, the man started to move his toes – and the group was afraid. There is a story in Indonesia that sometimes the dead may wake up and come back to life. They will suffocate some person between the lid of their coffin and then die again. Despite of that we continued our singing. When we were singing the seventh and eighth songs, the dead brother woke up, looked around him, and smiled.

  He did not suffocate anyone. He opened his mouth and said, 'Jesus has brought me back to life. Brothers and sisters, I want to tell you something. Firstly, life does not end when you die. I have been dead for two days and I have experienced it. Hell and Heaven are real. I have experienced it. The third thing that I want to tell you is that unless you find Jesus in this life, you can never get into Heaven. You will then certainly be judged to hell.’

 

We can find a description of the afterlife in a book called “Visions of Heaven and Hell” written by preacher John Bunyan, who lived in the 17th century (The same man also wrote the well-known book called “The Pilgrim’s Progress”, which is one of the most widespread books in the world.). This book mentions a lost person, who constantly rejected God’s grace and help. Don’t follow in his footsteps, let God save you and turn to Him before it’s too late!

 

Oh, damnable, nasty! Damned for ever! How foolishly have I done to myself! Of what stupid absurdity was I guilty as I chose the pleasure of sin for a short time at the price of high eternal torment? How often to me was said that it would happen like this? How often was I warned to give up the paths of sin that certainly would lead me to cells of eternal death! But I, like a deaf, did not listen to those warnings even though they warned so wisely. They said to me often that my short pleasure will soon change into eternal torment. And now my too sad experience says to me it, it really says, but it is too late to help because my eternal part has been determined for ever.

   "Why was I given the chance? Why had I been equipped with an immortal soul? Why did I not care about it? Oh, how my own neglect pierces me so dreadfully and I still know that I cannot and will not die. But to live a deadly life is worse than ten thousand deaths, and I still could have been helped once but I did not want to! Oh, this is the gnawing worm that never dies. Once, I could have been happy; once I was offered salvation but I rejected it. If it had happened only once and I would have rejected it, even that would have been unforgivable foolishness, but it was offered to me a thousand times, and I resisted it as often (so lousy I was). Damn the sin, which with its deceitful enjoyment enchants mankind to eternal destruction! God called me often but I resisted Him as often. He reached out his hands but I did not care. How often did I go against His commands, how often I resisted His reprimands! But now, the situation has changed, for now He follows my accident and mocks the ruin that has come for my part. He could have helped me then, but I did not want His help. Therefore, these eternal pains are just a reward for my own deeds and I am condemned to suffer."  (John Bunyan, Näkyjä taivaasta ja helvetistä [Visions of Heaven and Hell], p. 66-68)

 

MORAL QUESTIONS. Moving on to moral questions, which can sometimes be the reason, why many abandon Christianity and the Gospel. This is happening, due to disputes concerning sex, abortion and sexual minorities, and these disputes have become more common, especially, over the last decades. There didn’t use to be as much disagreement over these things in the past, but now they have become more prevalent. When discussing this matter, the following aspect should, however, be noted:

 

In the end it is a question of right and wrong

 

- (Isa 5:20) Woe to them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

 

Ultimately, many disputes come down to what is right and wrong. Can all our actions be right or can there be some that might be wrong? Usually, it is agreed by everyone that there are moral values, which concern everybody, but there are still a few cases being dispute over on, whether they cross the line that separates moral from immoral. Thus, some secular people might say the following:

 

• “Sex without marriage is not wrong”

• “Abortion is not wrong”

• “Having homosexual sex is not wrong”

 

But a Christian trusting in the teachings of Jesus and the disciples also holds them in the position of highest authority. Hence, he determines what’s right and wrong based on the teachings, such as in the following list of passages. They tell us which acts are wrong and separate us from God if done deliberately. Many agree that murder and theft, for example, are wrong from the things mentioned in the list of passages. They admit that those acts belong in the immoral area:

 

- (Gal 5:19-21) Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,

20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, jealousies, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

21 Contentions, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

 

- (1 Cor 6:9,10) Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?  Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortionists, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

 

- (Rev 22:15) For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and fornicators, and murderers, and idolaters, and whoever loves and makes a lie.

 

Hence, it is not that some Christians today would be better than other people and that they would determine their own rights and wrongs. Instead, it is about the reliability of the texts that were delivered to us by Jesus’ chosen disciples. Are they true or false? Christians believe them to be true, but secular people might deny their verity and that their applying to the current day. That is the quintessential reason for disagreement on this matter.

 

Consequences. If we disregard the Bible and abandon the teachings of Jesus and the disciples, we can still draw some conclusions from the consequences of certain acts. That is, if the action comes with bad consequences, then the act itself must be bad. Thus, if we look at, for example, the belief “sex without marriage is wrong”, meaning that “it is right to have sex when you’re not married”, which has the following consequences:

 

• If people practice having sex with many different people, diseases will spread more easily. For example, in Africa AIDS has killed hundreds of thousands of people, because the disease has been able to spread due to people having sex with multiple different people. AIDS also spread heavily in the USA around 20 years ago among homosexuals, because they tend to have more sexual relations than the rest.

• The more affairs people are having, the more likely it is that families fall apart. Infidelity and cheating on your spouse are not good for the couple, because they tear marriages apart. Children will also suffer from the choices that adults make if they decide to break the family. This also has an economical effect, because it will increase social costs. For example, research in the USA conducted in 2008 showed that divorces and children born outside of marriage cost tax payers 112 billion dollars annually (Girgis et al 2012:46).  Similarly, Etelä-Suomen sanomat explained on 31/10/2010 what the situation looks like in Finland: Institutional care for children and teens will soon require a billion, Children’s problems have heavily increased since the beginning of the 1990s... Institutional care for one child costs as much as 100 000 Euros per year... Additionally, Aamulehti reported on 3/3/2013 the following: marginalized teen costs 1,8 million. If we get even one back to society, the results will be a lot more positive.

• Parents having affairs is not a good place to start for a new born child. That is, if the parents are not fully committed to each other first, the child might often fall victim to abortion, adoption, or growing up with a single parent.

 

How about homosexuality and transsexuality? Many sincerely support these ways of life and demonstrate for them, but in reality, these orientations are thoughts and desires that people have in their heads. Every one of us has wrong thoughts and desires, but God invites us to life where we can be free of those thoughts. Unfortunately, more often than not we are far away from perfection, but God’s desire is that we wouldn’t live by those wrong thoughts and desires:

 

- (Mark 7:21-23) For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders,

22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:

23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.

 

- (Matt 5:28) But I say to you, That whoever looks on a woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her already in his heart.

 

- (Mark 4:18,19) And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word,

19 And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.

 

- (Rom 6:12) Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in the lusts thereof.

 

- (Rom 13:14) But put you on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.

 

- (Gal 5:16) This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

 

- (Eph 4:22) That you put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;

 

- (Col 3:5) Mortify therefore your members which are on the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:

 

- (1 Tim 6:9,10) But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.

10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

 

- (2 Tim 2:22) Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

 

- (1 Peter 1:14) As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:

 

- (2 Peter 3:3) Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,

 

- (1 John 2:16,17) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

17 And the world passes away, and the lust thereof: but he that does the will of God stays for ever.

 

- (James 1:14,15) But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

15 Then when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, brings forth death.

 

- (Jude 17,18) But, beloved, remember you the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;

18 How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.

 

Usually there are certain reasons behind desires and twisted thoughts (e.g. eating disorder anorexia nervosa is a good example of twisted thinking. A person might think that they are fat, although they were actually extremely thin) and some of those reasons could come from experiencing difficult relationships, sexual abuse and other similar causes. For example, female homosexuality could be partly explained by many those women not having a mother in their childhood. Homosexuality is reportedly more common amongst those kinds of women than among other women:

 

The study by Marcel T. Saghiri and Eli Robins (1973) was not based on a patient sample; instead, they recruited their homosexual interviewees through homosexual organisations. They noted that 27% of lesbians and 2% of heterosexual women had lost their mother before the age of 10. The relationship between lesbian women and their mothers had often been broken or was distant or indifferent. However, they had a warm relationship with their father. (7)

 

What about so-called sexually neutral marriages, and their ethicalness? From children’s perspective it is problematic. Because in cases, where homosexual partners want to have children (which is made possible, e.g., by sperm banks and surrogate pregnancies, or one of the homosexuals in the couple having been in a temporary heterosexual relationship), these children are being stripped away from their biological fathers and mothers from birth, simply because adults think such partnership is their right. Sexually neutral marriage law, thus, discriminates against children at the expense of adults. Adults’ freedom is placed before the fundamental rights of children.

Those, who have grown up in a homosexual family, have also criticized the system, which allows mothers and fathers to be taken away from children. Jean-Dominique Bunel, who grew up with his lesbian mother and his mother’s female spouse, tells us how he felt about it. He suffered from not having a father. He also says that if the sexually neutral marriage law would have been standing when he was growing up, he would have sued the whole state, because it would have enabled the violation of his child rights:

 

Not having a father felt almost like having an amputated limb… I suffered from not having a father, from the lack of his daily presence, his masculine character and example, which would have balanced my mother’s relationship with her lover. I was fully aware of these feelings from early on. (8)

 

How about the ethicalness of abortion? Why do so many people support abortion and consider it to be a good choice in certain situations? Why do they stand behind it? Probably because they don’t see abortion as something that is bad. These people should, however, consider the following questions:

 

- Do you think killing a person is acceptable?

- How do you argue that a fetus in the womb is not a human?

 

As such, when some try to support abortion, they might say that fetuses in the womb are not humans. They’ll end up thinking this, regardless of the fact that fetuses have the same body parts as new born babies: eyes, hands, feet, mouth, nose… Aren’t they simply letting go of clear scientific facts here? Isn’t it obvious that a fetus in the womb is the same person that is later born, meaning that it is now outside the womb? You should also remember that some prematurely born children are not much older than late-term aborted children.

 

If it is so that a developing fetus is morally equivalent to a child, then abortion is morally equivalent to infanticide. Only a few think that the government should let parents decide on their own, whether they want to be responsible for killing their child… Those, who are willing to defend women’s right to abortion, should make a statement on the argument that a developing fetus is equivalent to a human being, and then try to demonstrate, why the argument is wrong. It is not enough to say that the law should be neutral when it comes to moral and religious questions. Defending the right to abortion is equally as unneutral as demanding to ban it. Both parties await for an answer for this moral and religious dispute, which lies in the background. (9)

 

PreConceptions towards Christianity. Above we discussed - in addition to moral questions - two fundamentals of Christianity: creation and life after death. They are essential in understanding Christianity.

If people don’t believe in creation, they might also doubt the existence of God. These two things usually go hand in hand. How can there be a God if everything came into existence by itself? If that is the case, then it is quite unlikely that He would exist.

If people don’t believe in life after death, they won’t seek answers from Christianity. They won’t feel the need to do so, because they believe everything ends after this life. Their perception of death prevents them from turning to God.

Having preconceptions towards Christianity is, therefore, common and the reason for why people reject God. They don’t understand what it is all about. Instead, they might consider themselves wise and rational after having adopted a rejecting attitude. They are certain of their current perceptions and do not even want to learn about the fundamentals of Christianity and figure everything out.

What is Christianity about then? It can be summarized into one point, which we’ll be discussing next. This point is: Get to terms with God. We will familiarize ourselves with this important matter.

 

Get to terms with God. When reading the Bible, the following fundamental lesson pops up on each page: God exists. It is said from the Book of Genesis all the way to the Book of Revelation. The existence of God is a self-evident fact. For example, the beginning of the universe and life and also their existence – one of the topics in this text – all suggest that there is a God. Everyone can figure this out merely by thinking logically.

However, that does not include everything. The Bible also tells us, how we can get to good terms with God, be forgiven for our sins and it tells about the eternal life. In fact, the whole New Testament is based on the notion of people having been separated from God and being lost, but despite all that, still can experience the formerly mentioned things. The only thing that prevents us from receiving those things is our own negative attitude. If we act like Paul’s people did, our denial will hold us from God and eternal life.

 

- (Acts 13:45,46) But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spoke against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.

46 Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing you put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, see, we turn to the Gentiles.

 

How can people connect with God, have their sins forgiven and receive eternal life? There are generally three options, but only one of them is right. These are the options:

 

1. Acceptance comes through creation.

2. What we do.

3. Acceptance comes through the act of God through Jesus Christ. We will receive salvation through grace.

 

1. Acceptance comes through creation. Many support option number one, which is that God accepts us because He is the creator. Every road leads to God. And every person on earth will automatically be saved, although they didn’t care about God or did wrong things on purpose. This view is quite common in the modern society.

The former, however, is not from the New Testament. It clearly teaches us that we don’t automatically receive salvation. Everyone can be forgiven for their sins, but if someone doesn’t repent their sins and express repentance for their wrongdoings, they will not be forgiven. Otherwise, God would be giving His acceptance to injustice. You could not expect that from a good God. There are some verses that are related to this issue. They clearly tell us that unrepentant sinners will be separated from God. They will end up in hell:

 

- (1 Cor 6:9,10) Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?  Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortionists, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

 

- (Rev 21:6-8) And he said to me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to him that is thirsty of the fountain of the water of life freely.

7 He that overcomes shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and fornicators, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

 

- (Rev 22:14,15) Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and fornicators, and murderers, and idolaters, and whoever loves and makes a lie.

 

2. What we do. The other alternative is that people can receive salvation through their actions and by being as good as they can be. This teaching is quite common in most religions. In those religions many strive to receive God’s acceptance through their own selves by being morally good.

However, that’s not a Christian teaching and it doesn’t lead anyone to God. Because good actions and moral – despite being valuable and important – have one major weakness: they don’t guarantee salvation for anyone. We will never know if we’ve done enough good deeds, if we’ve been good enough, and whether God will accept our efforts. We won’t find certainty if we try to find it in ourselves or by doing the best we can. This is a fact for all major religions that don’t take seriously the Atonement of Jesus, including Christianity. Paul Little explains what he has noticed:

 

The Muslims do not have an assurance of salvation either. I have often asked the Hindus, Muslims and Buddhists whether they are going to nirvana or heaven after they die. None of them has been able to give me a definitive answer. They have rather referred to the incompleteness of their life, which is an impediment in reaching this goal. (10)

 

The reason why people can’t find guaranteed salvation from themselves is simple: we are sinful and imperfect beings, as the following passages will show us. It’s impossible to find certainty in a situation if we aren’t one hundred percent perfect:

 

- (Rom 3:23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God

 

- (1 John 1:8) If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

 

The following quotation will further showcase how deep the gap between us and God’s perfection is. Some might be better than others, but that does not carry much meaning. The gap is still there and it is impossible to bridge that gap. Our actions will not help us to receive salvation and to be forgiven for our sins, because we are too from perfection. The quotation will also introduce what will be discussed in the next chapter, which will explain how we can receive acceptance despite our imperfect nature:

 

Wait, I’ll give you one example: the average man can jump, for example, two meters. A person who has practiced sports and is fit may jump perhaps five meters. And if he is an Olympic winner, he can jump almost nine meters, but jumping any longer will be quite impossible in our generation. Let’s suppose then that we are all standing at the edge of a canyon with 200 meters to the other side. None of us has the ability to jump over that abyss, right? Now then, let’s study the same in the form of an allegory: That abyss is the abyss of sin and God is on the other side. He inspected as poor crickets just as we are and started pity us. He knew that it was quite impossible for us to get to Him by our own powers; for this reason, He sent for us His own Son, Jesus, who is a bridge between God and man. Jesus is the mediator between God and man. We can go with Him safely, because according to His own words He is 'the way and the truth and the life’! I know that there are many, who will reject this divine solution as too easy. They’ll rather try to do something by their own power to save themselves, but no effort of man can take him to God, our destiny is to fall into that yawning abyss!  (11)

 

3. Acceptance comes through the act of God through Jesus Christ. We will receive salvation through grace. Our third alternative is based on what God has done for us, and how we are can receive grace.

The same thing that applies to creation also applies here: God has done everything. He did the same with salvation, as He did, when creating the living and non-living world: He didn’t leave it in the hands of us imperfect people, instead He became a man through Jesus Christ and took away our sins. His love for people worked as His motive. We will look at passages relating to both creation and salvation:

 

Creation: God created everything for us:

 

- (Gen 1:1) In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

 

- (Rev 4:11) You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for you have created all things, and for your pleasure they are and were created.

 

- (Rev 10:5,6) And the angel which I saw stand on the sea and on the earth lifted up his hand to heaven,

6 And swore by him that lives for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer

 

- (Rev 14:7) Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.

 

Salvation: God prepared salvation for us

 

- (John 3:16,17) 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.

17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

 

- (Rom 5:6-8) For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.

7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.

8 But God commends his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

 

- (1 John 4:9,10) In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.

10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

 

- (2 Cor 5:18-20) And all things are of God, who has reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation;

19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, not imputing their trespasses to them; and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be you reconciled to God.

 

The following chapters will further discuss the subject. They’ll show that salvation, forgiving sins and eternal life are received through grace, because they are gifted to us by God. Salvation is not based on how well we have succeeded. This is a good message for everyone, who has recognized their imperfection.

 

- (Eph 2:8,9) For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

 

- (Rom 3:24) Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus

 

- (Rev 21:6) And he said to me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to him that is thirsty of the fountain of the water of life freely.

 

- (Rev 22:17) And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that hears say, Come. And let him that is thirsty come. And whoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

 

How can we receive forgiveness for our sins and eternal life? The New Testament provides us with a clear answer, and in that answer we can see the fundamental message of Christianity. Receiving happens through Jesus Christ, the Son of God. When we turn to Him and confess our sins, we will be forgiven for everything and we will receive eternal life. It is as simple as that. Don’t reject Jesus Christ, when you have the oppotunity to turn to Him! We’ll be looking at a few passages related to this:

 

- (John 5:39,40) Search the scriptures; for in them you think you have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

40 And you will not come to me, that you might have life.

 

- (John 14:1-6) Let not your heart be troubled: you believe in God, believe also in me.

2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

4 And where I go you know, and the way you know.

5 Thomas said to him, Lord, we know not where you go; and how can we know the way?

6 Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes to the Father, but by me.

 

- (Rev 3:20) Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.

 

So, if you have turned to Jesus Christ and received Him in your life, you are a child of God and have eternal life. You have the eternal life regardless of what you feel right now. Do not base your assurance of salvation on your ever-changing emotions, but rest in the word of the Bible and on Jesus Christ, just like the anchor of a ship is never thrown inside the ship but always outside.

 

- (John 1:12) But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name

 

 - (1 John 5:11-13) And this is the record, that God has given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

12 He that has the Son has life; and he that has not the Son of God has not life.

13 These things have I written to you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may believe on the name of the Son of God.

 

The prayer of salvation: Lord, Jesus, I turn to You. I confess that I have sinned against You and have not lived according to Your will. However, I want to turn away from my sins and follow You with all my heart. I also believe that my sins have been forgiven through Your atonement and I have received eternal life through You. I thank You for the salvation that You have given me. Amen.

 

 

OtherreasonswhypeoplerejectGod

 

 

REFERENCES:

 

1. Ronald Nash: ”Miracles and Conceptual Systems”, Douglas Geivettin & Gary Habermasin (toim.) teoksessa In Defence of Miracles (Grand Rapids, IVP, 1997), p. 122

2. J. Morgan: The End of Science: Facing the Limits of Knowledge in the Twilight of Scientific Age (1996). Reading: Addison-Wesley

3. Richard Dawkins: Jumalharha (The God Delusion), p. 153

4. Thoralf Gulbrandsen: Puuttuva rengas, p. 94

5. Sit. kirjasta "Taustaa tekijänoikeudesta maailmaan", Kimmo Pälikkö ja Markku Särelä, p. 19.

6. Carl Wieland: Kiviä ja luita (Stones and Bones), p. 15,16

7. Ari Puonti: Homoseksuaalisuus – hämmennyksestä selkeyteen, p. 101

8. Jean-Marc Guénois: “J’ai été élevé par deux femmes”, Le Figaro 1.10.2013

9. Michael J. Sandel: Oikeudenmukaisuus (Justice. What’s the Right Thing to Do?), p. 283,284

10. Paul Little: Tiedä miksi uskot (Know Why You Believe), p. 129.

11. Jakov Damkani: Siionin poika, p. 107,108

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jesus is the way, the truth and the life

 

 

  

 

Grap to eternal life!