This past weekend my church started a new series that you can see in the picture about. If you would like to watch the sermon, click on the words below the picture.
This is a timely series as a new movie is out called, "The Case for Christ," which is based on a book by the same name, written by a once atheist journalist who came to belief. I've read the book myself and highly recommend it.
The sermon was good as always, as I had already worked out in my mind and heart why I believe. The pastor talked about how there seems to be a dichotomy between science and religion. But I think both can co-exist. I do think that evolution has a place, as we can see that animals and humans adapt to their surroundings over time and space. But I do believe we are not evolved from animals. The proof for me is our sense of morality and theory of mind. Theory of mind is our conscious thinking. We know we are thinking about our thoughts, feelings, values, etc. Animals don't have a sense of morality, they act on instinct. They do have thoughts and feelings, but not like we do. It's hard for me to explain. People might think I don't love animals because of this. But it is my love for animals that contribute to this. It is not fair to humanize animals, expecting from them what they are not able to give us. Yes, they are far more intelligent than we give them credit for, but as I've said, their thinking is different than ours. They don't think about God, eternity, etc. It is because we are higher than animals that we are commanded to take care of them and respect them. It does not mean that we can use them for our own purposes, or to make them more human.
But I digress. One more pint about science. Even if the big bang were true, what caused the big bang? Eventually you have to admit that something or someone created the circumstances for that to happen. Noting exists out of a vacuum. Therefore, I believe God created the world and all that is in it.
This makes all life have value. At the turn of the century (1900), eugenics was very popular, which was based on evolution. Eugenics is the belief of a superior race overcoming an inferior one. This fit nicely with the Nazi's goal of creating a pure race and eliminating what they perceived as inferior. There is no value in individual life in this theory. On the other hand, being created by God gives value to all people and things. Personally, I like this as I would have no value in the eugenics theory. My life would not matter, and if not eliminated, as least not given the chance to pass on my progeny.
Morality exists, whether we want to admit it or not. Most of us believe that murder and abuse are wrong. We have laws to punish those who do this. We may disagree on other actions that may or may not be explicitly wrong, but that doesn't mean we do away with all morality. Most religions have a sense of right or wrong. These religions form the basis of governments around the world. Communism is anti-religious. No one life has value. All are for the country. No one has rights. No one can exercise free will.
It is true that religion sometimes has caused harm, like in the Crusades or the Inquisition, but those are caused by people, not religion. Religion does good. It brought the plight of the poor, disabled, and mentally ill to the forefront. It stopped slavery. It brought the civil rights movement. My point is, again, you can't throw all of something away because of the few bad people that would use anything to take power from the people.
My beliefs have been developed over years of study. I don't just believe what others tell me, I want to find out through research and study. God gave me a brain, He expects me to use it. The more I study about Him, the more I am convinced He is real. History, science, and literature tells me so.