- Humans Reject the Truth
- God Put the Invisible in Plain Sight
- Moral Creator, Moral Creation: Why Atheists Deny God
- To Reject God is to Dismiss Your Humanity
- Our Strange New World of Foolishness
- Worship God or Creation: The Great Exchange
- Life Brings Its Own Rewards
- Pagan Beliefs Produce Pagan Behaviors
- All Sexual Behavior Has Consequences
- The Defiance of Evil: Human Behavior Hits Bottom
We muddle and even dismiss our humanity when we reject God.
The truth of God’s existence has been revealed with such clarity that people who refuse to acknowledge God must suppress the truth. They must repeatedly and actively submerge the reality that continues to confront them, like a child pushing the jack back in the box.
We find such denial in the writing of the notable French biologist and Nobel Prize winner Jacques Monod. In his groundbreaking book Chance and Necessity he writes that all living beings are designed with a purpose in mind, pointing out that
… one of the fundamental characteristics common to all living beings without exception [is] that of being objects endowed with a purpose or project, which at the same time they exhibit in their structure and carry out in their performance.
Every living organism shows that it has a purpose by its design and function. This is so clear that any rational and objective observer would conclude that there is a Designer or a Purposer in the universe. But Monod professes to be an atheist. As such, he cannot live with this conclusion. So how does he deal with this inconsistency?
Objectivity nevertheless obliges us to recognize the teleonomic character of living organisms, to admit that in their structure and performance they act projectively — realize and pursue a purpose. Here therefore, at least in appearance, lies a profound epistemological contradiction. In fact the central problem of biology lies with this very contradiction, which, if it is only apparent, must be resolved; or else proven to be utterly insoluble, if that should turn out indeed to be the case.
Monod sees an inconsistency in modern biology. He says that the modern scientist must categorically assume what science cannot demonstrate, i.e. that there is no God. And at the same time, the scientist cannot deny—indeed, he must affirm—the design of living things. In their structure and performance he observes that they are purposeful.
This juxtaposition of opposing conclusions—the absence of a Designer in a universe replete with design—leaves him without a place to stand. Uncomfortably pressed against the reality of Truth, he cannot deal with this inconsistency at the level of scientific inquiry. His only solution is to label it “a profound epistemological contradiction.”
Only the atheist experiences this clash. If we begin with the assumption of no God, we will be perplexed by the design everywhere around us. The theist finds no contradiction in this discovery. Rather, he sees an affirmation of Truth. God exists and He is the great Designer and Purposer.
Monod and his fellow atheistic scientists are busy suppressing the truth. What the apostle says about mankind is true of Monod, et al: they had knowledge about God, but did not acknowledge him as God.
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Romans 1:21
Paul argues that when natural man denies God in the face of His revelation in creation, the rejection has four parts, a two-fold inaction and a corresponding two-fold result.
- The inaction
- They did not glorify him as God
- They did not give thanks
- The result
- Their thinking became futile (empty or vain, thoughtless)
- Their hearts were darkened (or hardened)
What should be the natural reaction when we realize that …
- We are not alone in the universe,
- The Creator God exists,
- We discover Him in our reflection on His creation,
- Our own design and function indicates we have been made for a purpose?
But instead, the rebellious heart of natural man suppresses the truth and denies the glory and thanksgiving that is God’s reasonable due.
Such neglect has consequence, both in our hearts and our heads.
God’s deity and our humanity are inextricably linked
Our heads become thoughtless, our thinking empty. We become, in C.S. Lewis’s term, “dumb animals.” We give our minds to trivialities.
And our hearts became dark, without understanding. In Ephesians, Paul writes: “They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts.” Hearts that should be soft and pliable are instead as hard as stone.
What a price to pay. In rejecting God, we become less than human, we become vain in our thinking and lack compassion in our lives. Our humanity is contingent on acknowledging God’s deity.
To put it another way, as we will see in the next post, we give up wisdom for folly.
- Darrow Miller