Tuesday, February 12, 2013

One Less God?

There exists an atheist explanation of their world view that makes us "not-so-different" when you boil things down.  I've made a similar claim with THIS video but on a completely different basis.  In this presentation, the atheist invites you to analyze your views of deity.  You don't believe in Allah, you don't believe in Vishnu, and you don't believe in Zeus, right?  Well, we just take it one step further and also fail to believe in Yahweh.  We believe in one less god than you.

I must admit, even as I type those words it appears to make some sense.  It appears to truly capture the difference between us and render it a thin veil.  But is that what we actually believe?  Not at all.  Or at least that isn't what I believe.  When taking a look at other world religions, I don't take so haughty a stance as to say they have NO good reason to believe god X exists.  Some have personal encounters with these beings just like many Christians claim to have with their Father in heaven.  So are they justified in following their object of worship?  Is their object of worship truly nothing or is it perhaps a competitor of our God?

Let's look to Scripture for an answer.  And it seems we have two potential possibilities as both the Old and New testaments contain explanations of what "idols" actually are.

1. Case One - they are nothing.  In this scenario, the atheist's one less god argument gains a bit of steam and merit.  One of the funniest verses in the Bible describes this humorous scene: Isaiah 44:14-17  Here we have a man that cuts down a tree.  He uses half of it fuel a fire, keeping himself warm and allowing him to cook some meat.  The other half he carves into an idol that he falls down to worship.  So apparently this god of his  doesn't mind being chopped and burnt, so long as a portion of him is reserved for proper adoration.  It's safe to say this kind of idol is, indeed, a man-made object with nothing of substance behind it.

2.  Case Two - they are actual entities.  Notice I didn't say actual gods. It's true there is only One God.  But Lucifer's great sin was to desire that title, counting himself more worthy and deserving of it.  He took a 1/3 of the angels in heaven and got them to follow him and support the idea before being kicked out.  Where did they fall?  Indeed, the earth.  And do you think these demons or Satan have stopped desiring to set themselves up as gods? Of course not.  Consider these verses as support for my point that many idols are indeed real entities posing as gods: 1 Cor 10:20,28 | 1 Cor 8:4-6 | Acts 17:16-18 | Psalms 106:36-39 | Deut 32:16-24.

One less god is partly true, like just about every good lie.  There is only One that has the title and no others that can rightly claim it.  There are cases of people worshiping objects that have no entity associated with it.  But as you can see, that's not the entire story.  And if End Times narratives soon come to pass, we are headed for a time when the demonic activity only gets more interesting.  Movies and many modern cultural references seem to be preparing us for a time when the gods of the ancient days return.  Revelation boldly predicts that if God didn't cut the time short, that even the elect (His people) might be deceived.  Perhaps some of the prevailing predictions that they will "pretend to be extra terrestrials" bringing us new knowledge and technologies isn't as far fetched as it once seemed.  Something on that level of spectacular would need to happen if even the elect could be deceived.


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