Photo Credit: morcommwww.sxc.hu

"Christian theism must be rejected by any person with even a shred of respect for reason."
George H. Smith, atheist

"Christian faith is not an irrational leap. Examined objectively, the claims of the Bible are rational propositions well supported by reason and evidence."
Charles Colson, Christian

I’m an ardent antagonist of religious people in my teenage years. I laughed at their boring practices and holier-than-thou attitude. My paradigm was so twisted that I saw them as mere network marketers thirsting for new converts so there will be more tithes (I can’t conceal my laughter when they recite Malachi 3:10 again and again, what a nice business guilt inducing tactic) for their business, how clever. I’ve always thought that religion is an invention of the monkeys for the monkeys.

Then an unthinkable twist of fate happened: I became one.

I’ve realized that I’m not really opposed to the idea that there is a God (an idea that I believed now is true), I’m just opposed to the people who don’t practice what they preach. I’m not a smart atheist, I’m just an irritated antagonist.

I assumed that when I became a believer, all of my doubts and questions (even awkward ones) will eventually evaporate. Who can blame me? This is one of the image that the church is always professing: “Come and believe! We believe in the power of God. There are no such a thing that will shake our faith. Open the eyes of my heart Lord, whooh, yeah”

But the stereotypes never came to me. Daily, I’m bombarded by questions of faith. Sometimes, half of my consciousness are entangled with the issues of faith while I’m walking. Here are some of the sticky questions:

One God. Three persons. What?

What happened to the dinosaurs?

If God is all powerful and all knowing, then why an egotistical angel named Satan got the third of His angels. Does God needs some leadership lessons?

How can be Jesus be God and man at the same time?

Does God loves a cannibal like Jeffrey Dahmer?

Where is God when it hurts?

How can a loving God let His one and only Son died?

Does Christians have a right to look down to ‘sinners’, especially the homosexuals?

Why there are so many hypocrites and ‘holier-than-thou’ in the church.

How can that ministry leader be that insensitive?

If Christians are called to be united, then why there are more denominations than the species of fish?

Why Christians are so allergic to the ‘worldly’ things while living as a head-on worldly?

Is science superior to theology? Or are they friends?

Why the Pastor’s preaching are so archaic? Why they assumed that we understand that theo-churchy-greek-omni-aramaic-omega-hebrew phrases? (The Heath brothers called this tendency in their book Made to Stick as the ‘Curse of Knowledge’)

Does aborted children goes to hell?

In a world with hundreds of religion, why Jesus is the only way to God? Are we not ignorant and arrogant in claiming so?

How can a loving God tortures someone in hell for not believing in Him?

The Church history was stained with deliberate blood and violence, how can someone believe that we are the haven of love?


I can hear the answers of pastors, Sunday school teachers, and theologians in my head right now. Somehow, I’m also hearing that I just lacked ‘the faith’ to believe. Being a Christian, do I lose the right to entertain these questions?

I’ve read number of books dealing with these very questions. I’ve delve to Christian books, philosophy books, atheist authored books, honest-to-heart-and-mouth books, I’ve even read thick theology books while eating. And yes, the Bible is my ultimate answer book, because I believe that God speak primarily through His Word.

Some questions are answered. Others are still lurking. Others resurrect from time to time.

I believe that some of these questions will never be resolved while we are still in this life. Maybe they are never meant to be answered, maybe, just maybe, they are meant to be endured. Think of it, if there are no more questions, no ‘what’ and ‘why’ bothering our faith, can it still be called faith?

When all answers are given, does holding on still retain its significance?

Faith summons the image of a man holding to an Anchor in the midst of storms. Faith means hustling and persevering to believe not because you’re disillusioned, but because you saw and experienced the Truth. And you as a follower of Jesus are willing to follow and hold on to the Truth no matter what life throws at you.

Let’s seek the answers that we can find in this life. Don’t be intellectually dishonest. Hundreds of believers have shared their perspectives to some of the questions. Folks like C.S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton, Ravi Zacharias, Norman Geisler, Frank Turek, Lee Strobel, Philip Yancey, and Timothy Keller are used by God to be the apostles to the skeptics. Here are the books that I believe will help you in your quest for answers:

C.S. Lewis

Mere Christianity

The Screwtape Letters

The Weight of Glory

Surprised by Joy

The Abolition of Man

God in the Dock

Miracles

The Great Divorce

The Problem of Pain

A Grief Observed


G.K. Chesterton

The Everlasting Man

Orthodoxy


Ravi Zacharias

Can Man Live Without God?

Jesus Among Other Gods

The End of Reason


Norman Geisler and Frank Turek

I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist


Philip Yancey

What’s So Amazing About Grace

Soul Survivor

The Jesus I Never Knew

Where Is God When It Hurts?

Disappointment with God

What Good Is God?

Reaching for the Invisible God


Lee Strobel

The Case for Christ

The Case for Faith

The Case for a Creator

The Case for the Real Jesus


Timothy Keller

The Reason for God

The Prodigal God

But know that when some of the answers are concealed by Him, He wants us to trust in Him and hold on to His promises. Don’t be succumbed to the tyranny of the questions, have the courage to look up and seek our ultimate answer - God.

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
-Jesus

You may also like:
Where Is God When It Hurts?
Recommended Books

0 comments:

Post a Comment