Saturday, April 19, 2008

Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed

Stacie and I were able to get to the movies tonight for the first time in quite awhile. We had heard about Ben Stein's new movie "Expelled" from a friend's blog and decided to check it out.

We both thought this movie was exceptionally well done. We weren't the only ones who thought so; this is the only movie we have gone to where the audience applauded when the movie was over. Here is a YouTube trailer that someone modified a bit to get a preview.

Though the movie was addressing Intelligent Design versus Evolution from an academic perspective, there was one comment from Richard Dawkins (the prominent evolutionist and author of "The God Delusion") that I want to comment on from a Biblical perspective. Near the end of the movie there is a scene where Ben Stein is interviewing him, and he made the comment that getting rid of God is "liberating." This "liberation" in my opinion is the central theme of the religion of atheism.

I have friends that are professed atheists that I have spoken with several times over the last few years. If there is one thing that is true of all of them it is that they desparately want to believe there is no God. They want the liberation that Richard Dawkins speaks of.

The apostle Paul sheds considerable light on this issue in Romans 1:18-25.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

I personally don't believe there are really any true atheists. The evidence of God is clearly revealed in creation and is enough to know there is a God. Additionally, the more scientists learn and study the creation and the complexity of things like cells and DNA, it is evident that these highly complex organisims are by design, not from a chance encounter in a primordial mud puddle. There is also a remnant of truth deep down in all humans beings made in the image of God that knows there is a Creator, but to acknowledge that would by necessity presuppose some standard of moral accountability and worship of that Creator. As a result, they suppress that truth (some much more than others) and worship the creature rather than the Creator.

Atheism is supposedly "liberating" because it frees its adherents from any moral culpability. The truth from the apostle Paul is that in this suppression of truth, God gives them up to the lusts of their hearts and over to a debased mind. The liberation they seek is really a bondage to the sinful nature we all inherited at birth. The good news of the Gospel is that there is new birth in Christ!

If you get a chance to see the movie, take the time to meditate on Romans 1 before you go. You will see the suppression of truth that Paul talks about, and the fallout that results from it very clearly.

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