The God Who Wasn’t There

The God Who Wasn’t There

We know we have come to know him if we obey his commands.  The man who says “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him.  This is how we know we are in him.  — 1 John 2:3-5

I recently watched this documentary called “The God Who Wasn’t There.”  In no way do I suggest that you watch this…it is highly NOT recommended.  Great…I just made you want to watch it.  Anyway, it is about this dude who grew up in a Christian home and attended a Christian school.  He “accepted” the Lord at that school.  For whatever reason, he decided that God wasn’t there, and Christianity is simply another form of many other ancient religions and should be treated no differently.  He spends about 45 minutes trying to convince the viewer that he or she is absolutely foolish to believe in Jesus.  He implies that all Christians are “blood thirsty” because it seems that our preference of Jesus is of Him bloody, beaten and crucified.  Apparently, since he thinks that is weird, the whole world should think that is weird.  He, of course, gets a whole bunch of his “smart” buddies to side with him and bash all of us “small minded,” “unthinking” Christians.

He concludes the documentary by filming the little chapel and showing the seat where he got “saved.”  He moves the camera further back on the pews and talks about how he moved back the more he became “backslidden.”  He mentioned he had been “saved” at least four or five times in that little chapel.  He talked of Matthew 12:31 where it says “blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.”  He turns the camera on himself and whispers “I deny you Holy Spirit!”  Then the words “I am not afraid” comes on the screen and it goes off.

Now, here’s why I tell you this.  Watching this actually poisoned my mind for a bit.  There were times that doubt struck me big time…this guy was no dummy, he had done a lot of work and research to make his points look good.  I went to the Lord in prayer and I went to my Bible to repair all the damage I did by watching the hour long documentary.  God showed me a couple of things.

First, the guy never talked about what he was living for now.  If he was going to walk away from Christianity, what did he replace it with?  Apparently, he chooses to replace it with a whole lot of  time and effort trying to convince people that it isn’t true.  Unfortunately for him, 1 Peter 1:25 says “the word of the Lord stands forever.”  I felt sorry for the guy for the first time.  In a hundred years he will be long forgotten, but there will be a Bible in most people’s homes.  Yes, the word of the Lord stands forever!

Lastly, God asked me “Adam, if you left…where would you go?”  I thought of how Jesus asked his disciples “do you want to quit, too?” in John 6:67.  Peter said in the next verse “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.   We believe and know that you are the holy one of God.”

To answer that question, I only needed to look at what I’ve lived for in the past.  At one time, I lived for sex, drugs, and rock and roll…well, minus the drugs except for alcohol (I was pretty afraid when they brought out hardcore stuff).  I found that stuff to always leave me “bored” when there was no party, no girlfriend, or no place to play music.  I found that I was always wanting more…someplace else, someplace better.  Then, I remember how I sunk my heart into stuff.  I loved golf stuff, guitar stuff, entertainment stuff…just stuff.  Every time I accumulated a new piece of equipment, I was so happy for a little bit.  Then, I would see the ad for something shinier and better.  If I walked away from my Lord today, is this the junk that I would go back to?  I found absolutely no real satisfaction in that stuff.

The truth is, I like serving the Lord.  It took a while.  It took a whole lot of self denial.  It took a whole lot of obeying His commands even though I didn’t understand (or want to) at the time.  It took a whole lot of failure.  It took a whole lot of me not thinking I was good enough and Him picking me up and saying “try again.”  I am still quite a work in progress.  But, I KNOW Him!  What a cool thing to be able to say!   I can say that because I obey His commands.  Do I fail sometimes?  Yep.  Do I get it right all the time?  Nope.  But, here is the difference.  As a beginning Christian, I HAD to follow His commands.  I thought God was fierce, mean, and oppressive…much like documentary dude did.  I thought He was waiting for me to mess up so He could strike me with lightning, or cancer, or something else really bad…mainly God was just looking for a reason to dangle me over the fires of Hell.  But, now that I’ve been in this thing whole heartedly for several years…I WANT to serve Him.  I WANT to keep His commands.  Everything I have ever given up for Him has only been returned with 10 times a greater blessing for me.  He has been so good to me!

I guess I say all that to say this:  If you aren’t serving God, who, or what are you serving?  You can serve yourself, you can serve vengeance, you can serve sex, you can serve stuff, you can serve money…you can serve all kinds of temporary stuff that will leave you fulfilled for a very short time.  But even if you had all of that stuff in unlimited supply…would it really satisfy you?  Now that he has forsaken the Lord, is documentary dude really satisfied?  It is obvious that he is still searching…BIG time!  But as for me….

As for me and my house…oh yeah…we will serve Lord!

Later

Adam

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About wednesdaymorningdevotional

I am currently the pastor of Lifeline Community Church in Fair Play, South Carolina. I also teach mathematics to middle schoolers. I have been publishing devotionals every Wednesday morning for about 7 years now. If you would like to listen to any of my actual sermons, visit www.lifelinecc.com.
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