The comforting thought of being wrong

58-a-couper-le-souffle-ambiance-estivale-sur-votre-bureau-copy

Skeptics should find it most comforting to consider the possibility that they may be wrong, and that there may be a God who made the world, and who one day will fix everything that’s wrong with it.

This thought is heartening because we all have dreams for a better world—dreams of freedom and beauty, of goodness and love. Most of us hope we can somehow make this world a better place.

But if, as naturalism claims, this material world is all humans have ever known, if this is “normal” and things have been this way for millions of years, then our dreams make very little sense. What do we mean by “better”? To what are we comparing this world?

However, our dreams make a lot of sense when we put them in a framework of belief in a God who created a perfect world that was ruined by sin, and who purposes to make everything right, and good, and beautiful. The Biblical narrative tells us that the Creator also happens to be a Redeemer and that paradise will one day be restored. The last chapter will be glorious.

Perhaps even skeptics could get excited about that.

–J. O. Schulz

Advertisements

We all long for Eden

garden_of_eden_by_encubed-d5w5rd4-1024x576 copy

Certainly there was an Eden on this very unhappy earth. We all long for it, and we are constantly glimpsing it: our whole nature at its best and least corrupted, its gentlest and most humane, is still soaked with the sense of ‘exile’.

–J.R.R. Tolkien,
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien

When materialists get muddled

Luc FerryI will say that the cross of materialism is that it never quite succeeds in believing what it preaches, in thinking its own thought. This may sound complicated, but is in fact simple: the materialist says, for example, that we are not free, though he is convinced, of course, that he asserts this freely, that no one is forcing him to state this view of the matter — neither parents, not social milieu, nor biological inheritance. He says that we are wholly determined by our history, but he never stops urging us to free ourselves, to change our destiny, to revolt where possible! He says that we must love the world as it is, turning our backs on past and future so as to live in the present, but he never stops trying, like you or me, when the present weighs upon us, to change it in hope of a better world. In brief, the materialist sets forth philosophical these that are profound, but always for you and me, never for himself. Always, he reintroduces transcendence — liberty, a vision for society, the ideal — because in truth he cannot not believe himself to be free, and therefore answerable to values higher than nature and history.

― Luc Ferry,
A Brief History of Thought:
A Philosophical Guide to Living