Have you ever shown up for a meeting at the wrong address? I mean, have you ever actually gone to the front door of someone's house, opened it, and innocently walked in only to discover-to the horror of all involved-that you unwittingly went into the wrong house? Can you imagine how the owners must have felt as they helplessly watched a perfect stranger leisurely stroll unchallenged into their house? Can you imagine how red your face looked when the truth flooded into your cheeks?
Well...our church holds weekly prayer meetings. They begin at 6am on Monday mornings at a certain elder's house. Now here in Canada it's still dark at 6am in the morning (at least in March). Anyway, a friend of mine was on his way to this prayer meeting, to a house he'd been at countless times before. It's a house located in a subdivision with several other similar-style houses. Upon arriving at 5:50am he parked his car, pulled himself out, rubbed his tired eyes and sleepily stumbled around the snow drifts and up the driveway.
Now I might have some of the details incorrect, but the story proceeds basically as follows: My friend claims he remembers noting a different vehicle in the yard. Clue #1. "Wow," he muttered to himself, "Jordy must have bought a new car." Then he noticed the garage door. Under the outside light he realized that it was a different color! Clue #2. "Man," he mumbled again, "Jordy must have painted the garage door this weekend! He's been busy!" As he passed the garage he went around to the front door and noticed that it too was different. Clue #3. Opening the door (without knocking, of course) and walking into the foyer, he noticed rather astutely that that too was different. Clue #4. Walking past all these clues, including different colors and pictures on the wall, he ran into clue # whatever in the kitchen...a person staring at him in her bathrobe! It was then that his dream was shattered and the nightmare began. I must confess...when I heard this story I never laughed so hard in all my life!
Sometimes, no matter how many clues we're given to the contrary, we still persist in believing an error. In our culture today, no matter how many clues God gives us, we persist in believing He doesn't exist. We're absolutely convinced that we're reading the "facts" correctly. But we're not. And the problem is not that there's a shortage of clues; the supply always exceeds the demand in God's world.
The fact is, we live in an age characterized by information explosion, doubling, even tripling our clues in the blink of an eye. The half-life of any college degree now makes the paper it's written on almost useless. But, people appear to be more confused than ever about life's important questions. "What is happiness?" "What is meaning?" "Why am I so given to materialism?" And, most important of all, "Does God exist?" It's like we're building an automated world of which we will have no part since we, by our very nature, are not machines! And it seems that God has no part in this world either.
Take science for example. Some scientists argue that we're only at the beginning of the scientific knowledge explosion, i.e., that we're only at the beginning of the avalanche of clues God will send our way. Of course, many of them don't believe God has anything to do with the clues, but therein lies the point of my story above.
Nonetheless, in many respects and in comparison to years past, the fields of astrophysics and mathematics-two fields which are inextricably bound up, one with the other-demonstrate the rapid advance in scientific clues that point away from evolutionary models toward a Designer.
Astrophysicists now generally agree that while the actual center of the universe cannot be known, it had an actual beginning and is finite. This is due in large measure to the ground-breaking work of the famous German physicist Albert Einstein and his theory of general and special relativity. Others such as Stephen Hawking later developed Einstein's equations to include not just matter and energy, but also space and time. Thus Einstein opened the door and paved the way for studies in unified field theory.
Studies as recent as the late 1990s have shown that the four forces of physics (namely, electromagnetism, the weak and strong nuclear forces, and gravity) can be unified. At first, the theory of supersymmetry demonstrated that electromagnetism and the weak and strong nuclear forces can be unified. That left only gravity to be integrated into the model. This occurred as recently as 1994, when in the wake of certain breakthroughs in mathematics and science, gravity was added to the unified field theory in a consistent way. One of the most significant advances in thought which made these discoveries possible was the idea that perhaps there are more dimensions than just the four readily apparent to us. The unified theory with its understanding of "strings" and "massless black holes" makes sense in a ten-dimensional realm.1
The famous theologian/medical doctor Albert Schweitzer summed up our situation quite well: "As we acquire knowledge, things do not become more comprehensible, but more mysterious." Fewer statements have proved more prophetic.
So the problem is not a shortage of clues as to God's existence. But, things will undoubtedly remain quite befuddling until we realize that we've been reading the clues wrongly and that we're in the wrong driveway at the wrong house. The various strands of atheism supported as they are by the multiple versions of evolution (and other reasonings) will always lead us to the wrong address. It's time to awake from the dream, lest it turn into a nightmare!
It seems to me that we've put God between a rock and hard place. If he showed up in dazzling array (which he certainly will someday), we'd cry out: "Unfair!" "Unfair!" "He's coerced us!" But as he drops clues here, there, and everywhere, we scream out: "Not enough information God!" "Not enough information!" I'm beginning to wonder, as in the case of my friend going to the prayer meeting, if the problem's not with the quality and quantity of the clues, but with us!
Now I realize there's a jump between basic theism, Christian theism, and the belief that God has definitely revealed himself in and through Jesus Christ. But if you're one of those people who believe that there are enough clues, then don't let the naysayers deprive you of your belief in God.
Further, if you believe in God, the One and Only supreme Being who created the entire universe, then I urge you to consider the claims of Jesus Christ. For while "seeing God through creation" is the first leg of a fascinating journey, you're really only half-way there. You need the connecting flight that gets you all the way into the Holy City.
Again, we learn about God's power, wisdom, and self-sufficiency in creation, but we learn about His love, mercy, and grace through Jesus Christ (His kindness, cross, and resurrection)-two chapters, as it were, in God's riveting story about Himself and His creatures. When God brings the two together for us, the bandages on our eyes are removed and our 3-D vision restored. The One whose hands I saw in creation is the very One who died and rose again...and whose face I now behold in Jesus.
Jesus claimed to be God, accepted worship as God, and did the works of God. From creation we learn of God's omnipotence, but in Jesus we learn that God has a face and a name. In short, we learn that He constantly thinks about us and that He wants to be known by us, even to the point where he gave His life to secure our love.
Are you willing to take the risk and pursue a relationship with the Creator through Jesus Christ? Jesus said, "Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28). He also said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through me" (John 14:6). Now is the time to determine to read the clues aright and to find the right house. He's there waiting...
1 See Hugh Ross, Beyond the Cosmos, rev. ed. (Colorado Springs: NavPress, 1999), 27-46.