Easier to not believe

2814818487436554_AKjxRH8F_bWhy do you gloat? You act proud of not believing in God. You call yourself open-minded, unfettered by religion, etc.

But I don’t see the higher moral ground of not believing in God because it’s as easy as giving up — and there’s no heroism in surrendering. It is enough that the devil assails our faith constantly. It is enough that it is hard to muster faith in the midst of adversity.Β  And then the intellectual world constantly 9007267975137310_SqILL0gD_bbombards us with darts of discouragement.

It would be easy for me to give up, to give place to the negativity inside me, to cease from faith and blame God (called lack thereof). It is a struggle to believe for finances, for healing, for restoration. To me, struggling against unbelief is heroic. Losing faith is easy — sorry, no kudos for that.

If you are fighting for faith, you are my brother. If you are an atheist, you are my friend, but I don’t understand you.

53 responses to “Easier to not believe

  1. Having faith, the kind that can move mountains, does take work. The toil is well worth the effort.

  2. criticofchristianity

    Losing my faith is the hardest thing I’ve ever been through. I wouldn’t call it easy at all. I never wanted to become an atheist. I’ve become excluded from my family and much of my community, I’ve lost the comfort and reassurance of knowing God has my back. I don’t have Jesus’s love anymore. It’s been incredibly difficult, especially as a teenager with so many other changes happening. I don’t understand how you can say it’s easy. Atheism was a moral necessity for me. The God of the Bible has commanded the slaughter of children and would condemn me for Hell because I am honestly searching for truth. I couldn’t love a God like that, even if on the off chance that he does exist. Please don’t think that I am taking the easy way out. I am looking for answers. I’m reading books. I’m doing my best. I would love for God to exist if He is truly loving, I would accept Him with all my heart, but at the moment, I can’t see any way that could be compatible with some of the things said in the Bible. I hope it’s okay for me to comment. I understand if you don’t want any atheism on your page.

    • Hi Critic! Well, yes! If you put it that way, I can understand! No, I don’t think you are condemned for seeking. To the contrary, I congratulate you. AND,I have no problem with people who struggle: with the Bible, with traumas, with whatever. I think that most, if not all, problems with the Bible can be resolved simply by study, contextualizing, understanding better. “Slaughter of children?” Not sure what that refers to.
      Also, your mention of “moral necesity” doesn’t register with me. Thanks for your sincerity, your honest search. I have searched some issues but on this side of the equation, on the side of faith, but maybe many of them are the same doubts that you might have. I’m gonna be honest, not all of my questions about the Bible are resolved satisfactorily. I just haven’t jettisoned God as a result. I continue believing in God. I believe in God because of what I have seen (miracles). I believe in God because all of creations SCREAMS (to me) of the existence of a Creator. Sorry, I can’t do otherwise. I can’t just make the huge leap of faith to assume that the whole universe and the beauty of this world has no Architect. That makes absolutely no sense to me. But I heartily welcome discussion, and I try to be empathetic. Obviously there are some in my camp (Christians) who are quite annoying and holier than thou. And there are some in your camp who take up the very same attitude. I hope that I don’t come across as shrill when I issue a challenge to atheists to re-think their positions. Yours, Mike

      • criticofchristianity

        Slaughter of children – verses like Ezekiel 9:5 and 1 Samuel 15:2-3 as well as the killing of the first born egyptian child. Also, the great flood. Surely I am condemned if my seeking has led me to atheism? As it has so far. I have read some books and talked to people who have studied the Bible and I’ve done my best to figure out the context of verses such as these. But when it comes down to it, I can’t find any context where it could be morally acceptable to command such atrocities. Unless the verses are an extreme form of hyperbole, and therefore God didn’t command such things, which some apologists such as Paul Copan argue. I am doing more research into this. But even then, some of the laws and other commandments in the Old Testament, and the idea of salvation by grace, give me grave doubts about the goodness of God.

        Fair enough, if I’d seen miracles then maybe I would believe. I think maybe that if it’s possible to believe in an uncreated creator than it’s no crazier to believe in an uncreated universe. I would have thought that if we were designed then our bodies would be better – have less problems with sickness and such. I also feel like it would be wrong for me to trust scientists when they produce cures for diseases but then ignore them when it comes to their other ideas, like evolution. But when it comes down to it, I know it’s impossible to prove/disprove God through science. Maybe God did it through evolution. God’s character is my main objection to Christianity, the science of it is secondary.

        I understand what you’re saying about not taking the leap of faith to become an atheist, I felt the same way for a long time. In my case, I’d been taught to think like a Christian all my life, so everything else seemed ridiculous. Thanks for taking the time to respond to my comment.

        • Ivegotconfidence

          Having read some of your comments, criticofchristianity, I felt I had to jump in for a minute. I will grant you that there are plenty of things in the Old Testament that are hard to understand, comprehend, or are down right confusing. That’s why He desires that we study His Word, pray and ask for His help to understand. He gives us a lifetime to delve into it all and as we grow in understanding, He’ll bring the answers as we’re ready to hear them. But, ultimately, Israel was His chosen nation, out of whom His Son Jesus came, and He was the Savior and Lord of all…to those who will believe and receive Him into their hearts. God was protective of Israel, jealous over them as a father over his children if you will, and the nations He instructed them to totally destroy down to the last little animal, were nations that could have thwarted His Heavenly plan for you.

          He can see the total picture. We can see such a finite piece of it and that limits our understanding that what He does, He does with an eternal purpose in mind. You may recall that Pharoah was the one who ordered the deaths of all of the Israelites first born children under the age of two years of age, but God miraculously spared Moses who would be their leader as they went to build a nation of their own once freed from Pharoah’s bondage. But, God chose the deaths of the Egytian first born to be symbolic of what would happen a few thousand years down the road with Jesus. The Israelites sprinkled the blood of the perfect lamb on their door posts and lintels (the sign of the Cross) the night the Egytian first born died. This was to be called Passover, the night God passed over the Hebrews to save them. Thousands of years later, God sacrificed His first born Son on a cross and 3 days later raised Him from the dead. Now God applies His blood to our hearts when we receive His forgiveness of sins.

          A lot of what happens in the Old Testament is “naturally” symbolic of what happens “spiritually”. If you can accept it in that context, it might make things easier, but ultimately, the Word of God must be taken by faith. In the natural, we cannot understand or fully accept what is written. But if we will accept even what we don’t understand, by faith…God will help us to understand in time. Keep searching, keep reaching out to Him for answers. You’ll find them if you don’t give up! God bless, criticofchristianity!

        • first of all I am a Christian and I do not believe in hell. second you must understand that all the judgments on the Egyptians were directed at their false gods which caused them to do many evil things and kept them from the truth about God. for example, God ordered the deaths of men, women and children at the hands of Saul. but those societies were totally morally depraved and wicked and God gave them over 400 years to repent. should He continue to allow children to grow up in such societies? would that have been merciful?

          you put to much trust in science. there have been many false theories in the past that were supposed to be rock solid truths but were merely prejudices of very human minds.

          God’s character is pure and loving. I think you are judging God based on your very limited knowledge. Sort of like a child judging an adult. but I also know that no one can believe without the gift of faith and you can’t force yourself to believe. your sign indicates that you are not really searching for the truth but something that you are comfortable with when in fact the truth is very rarely something that makes us comfortable.

          if you honestly seek the truth God will show it to you.

          • criticofchristianity

            Slaughtering children is NEVER OKAY. I think it is extremely dangerous to be so subjective with morality. The 9/11 bombers would have thought they were doing the right thing because of this kind of thinking: America is excessively evil, Allah has given them years and years to repent so let’s go kill them. Such a mindset can never be considered acceptable. Anyway, even if it was necessary to kill the adults, surely Israel could have taken the children into their own care and raised them Jewish, wouldn’t that have been the better thing to do?

            Maybe I do put too much trust in science, but I think their methods are the best we have for discovering truth: logic, testing hypotheses, evidence, peer revision etc. If I can’t trust those things, then I can’t trust anything.

            If my knowledge is so limited than how can I trust God? I’m not going to take a leap of faith unless I know He is good and He is real. I can’t see how a good, reasonable God would expect me to do so. As you say, I can’t believe without the gift of faith and that comes from God alone. Apparently He hasn’t given it to me.

            Haha nope you are wrong there. I am honestly searching for truth. If I’m uncomfortable with anything it would be atheism. I want a good God to exist. I want the universe to be just. But I can’t figure out how it can make sense with verses like those I mentioned above. I just cannot sing the praises of a God who commanded such things, no matter how evil the people were. So I guess I am uncomfortable with a baby-killing God, but I’m not apologising for that.

            If God exists, I hope He will show me the truth, but He certainly seems to be taking His time.

            You’re a Christian that doesn’t believe in Hell? Surely that isn’t Biblical? I don’t know though, that’s just what I’ve been taught.

            • I’m late to this converation, but I need to speak. You have a lot of questions that take note of the evil in the world. Evil permeates our world of time and space. Many of the stories in the Bible which sound horrific to us are battles between good and evil worked out in the lives of human beings. The most crucial battle of that type took place when Judas betrayed Jesus and Jesus was nailed to a cross. God is good; Satan is evil. I believe in Satan and I believe he works with any material that comes to hand in order to deceive us and make us think God is our enemy. Or he makes us think God doesn’t exist, which is to say, he weighs us down with hopelessness in the face of the evil in the worl by making us believe there is no power for good.
              I have known God’s presence in ferocious storms at sea, and I have known God’s presence in ferocious family storms. Most of all, when I was avoiding him and pretending I didn’t need him, he came and walked beside me till I turned and fell into his arms. In Christ, God gave himself for us. Because of Christ, God wipes out all the guilt we feel because we know we are not perfect. We know that try as we will, we simply can’t clean up enough for him to love us. Our heavenly father looks for us the way the prodigal’s father looked for him, and when we finally come running back, he forgives us, not because we deserve it, but for Jesus’ sake. Christ fought that terrible battle with Satan for us. I know, because he fought it for me. He fought it for you, too. You may have lost your way for now, but he is right there beside you just waiting. Christ suffered Satan’s attack for you. He loves you, and he wants you to have the confidence and peace that is eluding you. I will pray that you find it.

    • Heather Mertens - 40YearWanderer

      Respectful conversation is how we all learn. πŸ™‚ There is NOT enough of it. Re: God’s moral character and the later comment about Hell and condemnation –
      I would just like to say that Scripture tells in Rev 21:8 (among many others) – 8 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liarsβ€”they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”

      So “hell” does exist. I see Scripture describing it as the ultimate separation from God for eternity. We may not like how God has done things in the past, now, and what He will do in those future days as described, but our ways are not His ways – and that means we can’t and shouldn’t attach our moral beliefs as humans to the character of God. His moral character is so much higher than ours that we can’t fathom – as is His love, His grace, His forgiveness, His Plan. Ask for the Truth to be given to you, knowledge, miracles… Ask and receive. I have seen so many that NOT believing would just be the most difficult thing to do within my existence. Miracles are happening all around us – they don’t have to carry the atribute of “big” to be a miracle. God created science and medicine… It all fits. It’s just that man has distorted so much of it. Man’s science contradicts itself. God’s does not. Miracles are what man experiences when we notice … When we are looking.

  3. It takes more faith not to believe, or they simple do not want to submit to God’s will. At any rate I agree with overall analyzing of the situation, right on.

  4. Amen! Faith is a fight… but thank God He is the author & perfector πŸ˜‰

  5. A fight but most definitely one worth fighting! Tried the other way…no thanks πŸ™‚

  6. They struggle not against god as they claim. They follow plenty of gods. But instead they struggle against THE God. The Truth. Until it moves 1 foot they won’t be set free by the Truth. One foot – from their head to their heart. You might be interested in the book I am writing called Live, Learn, Love – Q&A for the Soul. I have 50 panelists from all over the country with different belief systems who are diving in with me to discuss how faith and God factor into their lives. Their is non-belief discussed – agnostic/athiest – in a very respectful manner. God keeps me on my spiritual toes in this one! You can – and anyone you know – be a part too since I will be putting anonymous multiple choice Q&A on the book’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LiveLearnLove.QandA.FortheSoul. You can read more about it at my blog: http://www.40YearWanderer.wordpress.com πŸ™‚ – I love reading your posts! They make me think!

  7. I think some atheists would be better called agnostics in that they really don’t know if God exists and really don’t care to find out. It is truly puzzling with all the evidence surrounding us how some can say there is no God, but it’s up to us to help them to that realization. It may not happen for them until the next life, but that’s okay because our duty is only to be the best example of a true believer for them. We’ve got to show them that they can be included in our communities, in our neighborhoods, in our lives. We’ve got to reach out to them and understand them and love them as God would have us love them. It is in doing this, not by preaching any sort of hellfire or damnation that they will ever change their minds. If we are bothered by their pompous attitudes I wonder if it is we that are insecure in our beliefs rather than them. For if we know God lives what does it matter what anyone else thinks?

    • Yes absolutely! Agreed. In issueing them a challenge, hope I didn’t come off as pompous myself. Yeah, I try to stir them up a bit to challenge their thinking, but I don’t want to be a Pharisee. Thanks for the feedback. It is greatly appreciated!!!

      • I wouldn’t say pompous, but it felt a bit excluding. I’ve read your blog long enough, I know your intentions are good, so please don’t take it as any harsh judgement from me. I just think more atheists might consider God if we focus on showing them how it’s been so positive and helpful in our lives (something you often do anyways). Having a few atheist acquaintances myself, I think it’s better to lead by example, completely allowing them the freedom to lead their lives as they please. The important thing is to find common ground and I think most atheists would agree leading a good life is important. They like better to feel understood than preached at, ya know?

  8. Ivegotconfidence

    Thanks so much for stopping by and liking one of my latest posts on Ivegotconfidence! Your blog looks very interesting and fulfills a great need in the Body of Christ. Keep up the good work for the Kingdom! If you ever get the chance to stop by and say hello again, I’d love for you and your readers to check out my thoughts on having confidence in God. He is so good!

  9. Here’s a review of a recent UK TV program that implies that science has superseded God. The review points out the fallacious arguments and emotive methods employed. http://philhemsley.wordpress.com/2013/02/02/brian-coxs-wonders-of-life-what-is-life-a-review/

  10. Struggling against unbelief is heroic…so well said…whether the unbelief is outside or within..I agree. In order for faith to stay during onslaughts of lies of enemy, we must stand on the promises and declare: “It is Written”…ah then faith takes wings and rises to meet the challenges of our day. Thanks so much for sharing.

  11. I’m always amazed how many do NOT believe in God until they want to blame someone (Him) for a tragedy! To me that’s a “Christianity of convenience.”

  12. This post really resonated with me today. I have been in this place. I have searched. I have studied. I believe in the healing power of Jesus Christ. I have also seen miracles because of His name. Blessed are those who have not seen and STILL believe… perhaps if some believe first they will begin to see. That’s why J.C. says it takes child-like faith. But the worldly person rejects this concept as “childish” instead of child-like – open, flexible, joyful, having a teachable heart. It is good to have these conversations. There are many people searching for truth… there is a lot of thirst and a lot of hunger. Deep, deep hunger.

  13. Faith is from God… it is a gift… it is under continual attack from the enemy of our souls. Satan hates everything about God. Jesus prayed for Peter that his “faith fail not.” I noted as i read through all the comments that so many of us are trying to “get” or “keep” faith and we use our faculties to do that. If “Critic” is searching for God he will find Him; if he is searching for a god of his liking, he may find one… or he may make one up.

    thank you for stopping at my blog. Don’t back down.

  14. My sentiments exactly! Nice

  15. Well said! A long time ago, my prayer was, “God, please make yourself real to me– more real than anything I can experience with my 5 senses.” It is amazing to live out my life as He answers that prayer! It is a gift that He has indeed made Himself real to me. Yet, still, as you say, it can be hard to believe for my own provision, healing, etc. Please check out my husband’s blog, Art & Life Notes (wordpress). He has some posts called “On Making Biblical Faith Seem Stupid.” He’s a good writer, so it’s fun to read his blog! (I am only a little biased.)

  16. God is good…religion not so much…

  17. We all fight the good faith but it is His faith that He reveals to us as each day we face, and it allows us to draw near to Him, I slide, I try to not sin, satan is alive, and praise God that I can repent and receive forgiveness, knowing that in each storm He is there right with me. God Bless!

  18. Unbelief is the hardest spiritual battle to overcome. Well said! Thank you!

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