“The one who comes from above is superior to all. The one who is from the earth belongs to the earth and speaks about earthly things. The one who comes from heaven is superior to all. He testifies about what he has seen and heard, but no one accepts his testimony. The one who has accepted his testimony has confirmed clearly that God is truthful. For the one whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for he does not give the Spirit sparingly. The Father loves the Son and has placed all things under his authority. The one who believes in the Son has eternal life. The one who rejects the Son will not see life, but God’s wrath remains on him.”
John 3: 31-36
I don’t understand how anyone can look at the world we live in today and think, “We need less God.”
I realize there are non-believers, atheists and others who choose to live their lives without faith. The most outspoken among them claim religion is the cause for much of what is wrong with our world. These naysayers can run down a list of wars and other travesties where they site religion as the fruit of the destruction. Their lists begin with the crusades and go through World War II to modern day ISIS.
What I see most flawed about this position isn’t the argument so much as what happens after these naysayers have made their point. When these individuals are at home, what are their lives like? What basis are they founding the morals on which they raise their children (if they have children)? How are they personally contributing to a better world — in an extraordinary way that goes beyond merely recycling plastic and cardboard once a week on trash day? What do they really believe in and how does it improve their lives or the lives of their families?
Atheists can be involved in important community causes. Non-believers can serve as foster parents or adopt children from other nations. But the body of Christ is doing more.
I look at my Christian friends and I see a huge whole in the world that would appear if they suddenly vanished. Anti-Christian proponents aren’t going to fill in for the three teens I know personally who are serving in Guatemala and Uganda right now. Why? Because the naysayers don’t have the heart for it. They would rather spend their time shouting down the beliefs of others than raising up others around them. I see this tendency in atheists I know and I see it in the people they idolize, namely celebrities who make a living at mocking the beliefs of Christians and popularizing anti-religious positions. Mocking, though, requires little action and no original thought.
Around the globe, there are millions of Christians every day who make contributions to the world that better it in small ways — and sometimes large. What would the world be without these faith-based acts of kindness? Or the relief and love we deliver to third world countries? This domain would be an even colder, darker place than it already is if you can imagine that.
The world needs people of faith to carry it forward. We need more God. Our hearts are in the right place to bring about the change we want to see, but we have to live better lives so that the ones who challenge our views will understand the light Christ brings to us. A Christian who lives a life that is not Christlike is contributing to the opposition’s argument.