THE EVIDENCE OF REALITY

We do not wish to dissuade you from continuing to read this; yet, in the spirit of complete honesty, we should state that there is, in a sense, just one good reason to believe in God: it is true.
There are numerous such evidences, but they all contribute to our understanding of the reality of the God of the Bible. However, when we introduce reality or truth into the topic of God, many people become uneasy. When asked who won the 1961 World Series, what proportion of the American population is 65 years or older, or how to launch a rocket to the moon, everyone expects sober responses that are relevant to the actual world. Gasoline, not lemonade, goes in the fuel tank of your car; we would all regard someone as insane if he believed that putting lemonade in his car and drinking gasoline was a “personal lifestyle choice.” In the majority of cases, people speak and act as though reality is irrelevant. However, when it comes to God, this is not the case. Somehow, when it comes to religion, spirituality, faith, or God, people seem to feel that it doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you’re sincere and don’t cause harm to others. Indeed, many individuals are puzzled by statements that a particular religious belief is objectively true—that it conforms to reality—and is not only a subjective sensation or point of view held by its adherents.

What could be the rationale behind this notion? Consider the following possibility: The notion that no religious belief may claim to describe reality may imply that there is no discernible religious reality. For instance, the notion that religious ideas about God cannot be said to correlate to reality may imply that there is no such thing as a genuine God. If this were true, God would not exist at all. Rather than that, God would be a myth or a figure of speech, the ultimate Imaginary Friend. When people pray to God, they are actually communicating with themselves. At most, God would be a consoling fantasy, something people believe in to escape from reality. To be honest, if we believed this view of God was true, we would not bother you with evidences supporting believing in Him. Indeed, we would not bother believing in God. We have no use for escapism. If God does not exist, we should convert all churches into movies, bowling alleys, and libraries. Our entire interest in Christianity is in its ability to keep its promises—which cannot happen unless Christianity is true. Christianity, as C. S. Lewis expressed it, is not a patent medication. Christianity asserts that it provides an account of facts—that it describes the true nature of the universe. Its account of the universe may be truthful or false, and once you are confronted with the question, your inherent inquisitiveness must drive you to seek a solution. If Christianity is false, no honest man will want to accept it, regardless of how beneficial it may be; if Christianity is real, every honest man will want to believe it, even if it provides no benefit. You may be wondering why Lewis would make such a statement. Isn’t it possible for Christianity to be a positive, beneficial religion even if it isn’t strictly true? And why believe in anything if it isn’t beneficial? The response is that Christianity ultimately claims only one thing: to inform us of what the true, living God has done to restore us to a connection with Him that will endure beyond death for all eternity. If this God does not exist, the entire enterprise is evidently a fraud. While some people may find “comfort” in believing a falsehood, this is not the proper way to live. On the other hand, even if this God exists and you believe in Him, you are not assured quick access to a rose garden devoid of thorns. Thus, the only issues at stake here are the truthfulness of Christianity and the existence of the God of the Christian religion.

NO ESCAPE

When Keanu Reeves stars in the famous science-fiction film The Matrix, portrays an average guy who turns out to be everything from ordinary. However, everything that seems to be normal turns out to be a fabrication. After learning that his entire world is a virtual reality illusion created by artificial intelligence machines that have taken over the Earth, Reeve’s character, named Neo (which serves as a hint that he is the first of a new kind of man), learns that he has been trapped in a virtual reality illusion known as “the Matrix.” He and the rest of mankind have been deceived and have been living a lie. First, Neo finds it difficult to comprehend the reality of his situation, and the shift from the virtual world to the actual world proves to be much more difficult for him.

On a variety of levels, The Matrix is an entertaining and thought-provoking picture. Taking things too seriously, on the other hand, is a certain method of destroying the experience completely. A parable, as is the case with most science fiction, is the best way to understand The Matrix. The main argument is neither that extraterrestrial robots might exist or that virtual reality could one day completely replace life in the physical world (although many people take both of these ideas seriously at the present time). With this in mind, the movie invites the audience to contemplate the idea that reality is more expansive than the familiar material world that we see with our five senses. However, it would still be a grave error to accept the situation portrayed in the film at its face value.

A part of the appeal of films like The Matrix and many others is their ability to provide escape. Essentially, they provide their viewers the chance to escape from the actual world into a cinematic virtual reality in which their lives are either more thrilling, more romantic, or in some other manner more pleasant than their everyday existence. Good escapist films provide us with an emotional lift that allows us to return to our everyday routines with more vigor and a sense of accomplishment. That is, escapism in movies (or literature or television) is not truly about avoiding reality, but rather about empowering us to cope with it. Escapism in movies is entertaining and usually harmless, but escaping into other worldviews, ideologies, or religious traditions is idiotic and may be very destructive. The attempt to hide the truth about who and what we are, as well as the reason for our being in this planet, is futile. If there is a God who created us and who has expectations of what we should do, we need to know about him. If God is nothing more than a figment of our imagination, on the level of Santa Claus or the tooth fairy, we need to be aware of that as well.

The film The Matrix serves as an illustration of the fact that reality exists and is unavoidable. According to the plot, the machines have taken over the world, and the lives that Neo and his human companions have been living are virtual-reality fiction world. When Neo discovers that this is the truth of his universe, he does not come to the conclusion that there is no such thing as reality, but rather that what he had believed to be reality was just an illusion. Because an illusion is a distortion or deceit that conceals the way things actually are, the very notion of an illusion implies the existence of reality, as defined above. Eventually, one must reach a point when all illusions are dispelled and just truth is left. As a result, reality must exist, and we will eventually be unable to escape it. This is the reality that defines humanity even as we try to avoid its ‘truths.’

FAITH FOUNDED ON FACT

In the marketplace of ideas, there are many different faiths to choose from. Why should one believe in one religion rather than another? Let us begin by reducing the field down to those who are worthy of our consideration. Here’s something to think about: Begin by removing any faiths that demonstrate a complete disdain for the realities of everyday life. Take, for example, the proposition that we encourage you to believe in the Great Chicken. Naturally, you would start asking questions regarding facts, such as: Has anybody ever seen the Great Chicken? or Has anyone ever heard of the Great Chicken? Is it true that he ever left you candy? Consider the possibility that we not only did not have any information about the Great Chicken to share with you, but that we also considered your inquiries to be useless and disrespectful. What if we told you that “The Great Chicken comes only to those who ask no questions” meant that you should take Chikenism seriously? Without a doubt, this is not the case. However, for some strange reason, people are frequently willing to tolerate this kind of disregard for truth in the name of religion. Many faiths urge their adherents to base their views on their own convictions that something is correct. The claims of other faiths are founded on tradition: “We’ve been passing these tales down for generations,” they assert, “and they’re a part of our history.” Please keep in mind that we are not disparaging emotions or tradition. They are both critical components of our life, and we would be unable to operate properly without them. Our argument is that neither emotions nor tradition should serve as the foundation for adopting a religion; rather, it is the responsibility of the individual. Believers should accept their beliefs because they are correct—because they are founded on truth. In reality, Christianity is one of just a handful of faiths that claims to be founded on truths that can be verified in the real world—things that can be read about, investigated, and that are backed up by a substantial body of evidence. A religion that thinks people are capable of knowing these truths and being held responsible for their actions in the face of these facts is also known as pantheism. The Christian religion, in the words of John Warwick Montgomery, is a “faith based on truth.” The gullible believe anything, but the wise analyses his or her actions carefully. —PROVERBS 14:15 NKJV

Many people are shocked to learn that Christianity places such a high value on empirical evidence. The Bible, on the other hand, is unequivocal on the subject. The book of Proverbs cautions readers against being naive (Proverbs 1:22; 8:5; 14:15, 18; 22:3) and encourages them to learn more (Proverbs 1:22, 8:5, 14:15, 18; 22:3). (Proverbs 2:10; 8:9; 10:14; 12:1). “The truth,” Jesus said, “will set you free” (John 8:32 KJV). As early as Luke 1:1–4, John 19:35, and John 21:24, both writers maintained that everything they had written about Jesus was historical truth. When the apostles spoke, they cautioned people not to believe tales or myths (1 Timothy 1:4–7; 2 Timothy 4:3–4; Titus 1:14), but they also declared firmly that their teaching was founded on truth (Acts 26:25–26; 2 Peter 1:16). Consequently, unlike many other faiths, Christianity promotes the asking of probing questions, discourages naiveté, and provides real explanations or proof to support its astonishing promises. The sheer nature of these assertions—that God has intervened in our physical reality and left tangible traces throughout history—is a basic, fundamental reason to take such claims seriously on a fundamental level. That Christianity takes reality seriously is the first piece of evidence. It does not show that Christianity alone is true, but it does place Christianity in the range of possibilities for serious truth seekers. It is only after examining additional particular evidence that we can decide whether or not it is true. Assuming the evidence for the existence of God is convincing, the only rational course of action is to have faith in the biblical God. But hold on a second! What is reality, and is it possible for us to know what that reality really is? Is it possible for us to know what reality really is? Is it possible to have knowledge?



Categories: atheism, Behold The Man, christianity, english

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