Living Theology #8 – The Existence of God

by Garrett Glende

It is perhaps one of the most asked questions in our day, and certainly the most passionately debated. Is there a God? The answer has profound impact on the world and our daily individual lives, but do we often consider how we should live in light of the existence and knowledge of our Creator? The Bible testifies to the reality of this triune God, telling the story of His marvelous work of redemption through His Son, Jesus Christ.

America used to be a nation founded on principles that took into account the existence of this God, yet today there are many who would discount the truth altogether, claiming that Christianity is immoral and, in fact, harmful to the world. They challenge the Bible’s authority and suppress the knowledge in their hearts, all the while proselytizing their own stream of intense atheism. What should the Christian response be to the likes of Christopher Hitchens and Dan Barker, who claim that the God of the Bible is immoral and repulsive? More importantly, knowing that God does indeed exist, how are our lives affected?

If there is to be a response to the naturalistic materialist, then certainly our argument must be based on what the Scripture says about the existence of God. First, we know that God exists because of the inner testimony of our hearts. We have been created in the image of God and are therefore able to think and act in ways that no other created thing can. Having been made in this way, God has written on our hearts an innate knowledge of Him. Those who deny His existence only prove that the Bible is true when it says that those who do not believe “suppress the truth in unrighteousness.” These men know that God exists, but they have “exchanged the truth about God for a lie” (Rom. 1:18, 25). The Bible’s stance on atheists is not that they are people who say “God doesn’t exist,” but rather as Douglas Wilson would say is the first tenet of atheism, “God doesn’t exist and I hate Him.” It is clear that our own sin causes us to deny God’s existence, a fact that our own hearts testify to.

Not only has God revealed Himself to us through our own inner knowledge, we are able to see Him through His creation. Psalm 19:1 says that “the heavens declare the glory of God and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” When we look up and see the stars and the clouds, we cannot help but be amazed at the character of God. His majesty and glory shine forth simply through what He has created. We can know of His creativity when we see the vast amount of life in a coral reef, and His power when we stand at the base of a mountain. Thus, Paul can write in Romans 1 that the existence of God, “namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world. So they are without excuse.” Since God has so clearly shown Himself to us, we can only say that the fool does not believe in Him (Psalm 14:1, Rom. 1:21).

How then shall we live? It is the most necessary question of this article. If we take in our knowledge of God and leave it at that, then it’s really of no use to us at all. We might be able to win an argument with a sophomore biology student on campus, but does God’s existence really change our hearts?

What does it all matter?

That’s the issue. It does matter. Life matters. If God is just a man-made construction intended to soothe our fearful consciences, then why live with any care for the future? If there is no God, then there is no ultimate purpose in life. We live our three-score-and-ten and its over with nothing to look forward to. Our life as a collection of living cells is over and no one cares because that’s all we were – a lump of cells. But no, God does exist and there is purpose in life. As God, He is necessarily the ultimate end of all things. We exist because of Him and we exist for Him (Col. 1:16). In this way, every aspect of our lives has meaning and we should use the greatest to the smallest parts of it to glorify Him (1 Cor. 10:31). The decisions about what to buy at the grocery store matter because God exists. What car we drive, what house we live in, what we watch on TV – it’s all significant in light of the existence of God. Ultimately, we will all stand before God and give an account for our lives here on earth. It is my prayer that we all can say that our lives were lived with a purpose – the glory of the true and living God.

Advertisements

About

The Beacon is the monthly newsletter for Lighthouse Bible Church in San Diego, California. It covers a variety of subjects including LBC events, church history, current events from a Christan perspective, ministry profiles, and messages from our pastors and elders. To join the Beacon ministry, please contact Stephen Rodgers.

Subscribe



%d bloggers like this: