Saturday, September 11, 2010

Why I Believe, or, How I Know that God Exists

(Originally posted September 11, 2007)

I believe in Truth, in Reason, and in Love. I believe that there is truth, not only physical truth, transcendent moral truth -– right and wrong, good and evil -– and that this morality is not relative, otherwise, it would not be truth. In a world without God, any evil thing is possible. But in a world with God, love and salvation and freedom are possible; life is possible.

Indeed, Christ has already saved the world in a very tangible way. He has redeemed the world. Without Christian love and forgiveness and reconciliation, the world would have destroyed itself long ago. One wrong would lead to retaliation, which would lead only to retaliation for that act, in never-ending cycles of wars of vengeance, on both a personal and national level. We only need to look at some non-Christian cultures in the world today to see that they differ from Christian values and morality.

Yet, although I believe, I am also a sinner. My sins are great and many, and I am greatly in need of a savior to pay my debts, to ransom me. Maybe others believe that they can live well without Christ, and that they can have eternal life without Him. Maybe they don’t need Him. But I do need Him. I do need, not only His forgiveness, but His grace –- the power to do things that I could never do or accomplish on my own, things like love and forgiveness and perseverance and peace of heart and hope.

If it were just me, I’d probably want to nuke the entire Muslim world as payback for the bastards that do things like fly planes into buildings and set off car bombs and suicide bombs, killing thousands of innocent people. But Christ commands me to love my enemies, and He gives me the grace to do the impossible -- to let go of hate, to let go of the thirst for vengeance. He gives me the grace to do things like love and forgive such people.

Yes, forgive. I forgive those who did this evil thing. He gives me the grace to be able, when we hopefully have peace, to live together with them as children of God. Left to myself, I would not want to accomplish any of these things, and I could not do any of these things myself. It is only because God does exist, that such things are possible. We do not have peace now, and because peace requires both sides to set aside their arms, it may still be necessary to implement the tragic tools of war, but we should do so, not out of hate and vengeance, but only in order to gain that peace.

So, pray for true peace. Pray for our enemy, that God grant them grace and wisdom to choose peace. Pray for us, that, as we must necessarily destroy that enemy to obtain the peace, that God grant us grace and strength to not hate those He commands us to love, that we kill not for vengeance, but to end the violence and the capacity and will of the enemy to make war on us, until the day we again may live in peace with these children of God.
Eternal and Merciful God, at times of tragedy our intellects seek understanding, our hearts seek healing, and our souls turn to You: our source of hope and solace. Heal our troubled nation as our nation turns its eyes to You and comfort those whose lives are changed forever: those who have perished, those who have lost family, friends or loved ones, and those who now live in the aftermath of these acts of terror. May God bless our national leadership, may God bless our servicemen and women, and may God bless America. Amen

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, let thy protection be upon all those who are in the service of our country; guard them from all harm and danger of body and soul; sustain and comfort those at home, especially in their hours of loneliness, anxiety, and sorrow; prepare the dying for death and the living for your service; give success to our arms on land and sea and in the air; and grant unto us and all nations a speedy, just and lasting peace. Amen.

No comments: