Bondage and freedom

John A. Braun

“Prove that there is a God!” We all have heard the challenge. After all the data measured by the first Soviet satellites, some boasted that the satellites discovered no evidence of God. Since then we have sent men to the moon and probes all over our solar system. Still no proof of God in all that data. 

So some claim such probing is clear evidence that there is no God. Richard Dawkins and other atheists build their concepts without God and aggressively proclaim that all who believe in God are weak; superstitious; and, to put it mildly, stupid. Stephen Hawking* may have been a little more tolerant of those who believe in God, but he also said, “The laws [of science] may have been decreed by God, but God does not intervene to break the laws.”  

I thought about this as I listened to the sermon on Easter Sunday. It struck me that the scientists who abandon God are bound and confined by their own self-imposed principles. They are slaves of scientific thinking that can only observe the world and understand it based on the evidence that human senses can provide. I understand that and accept the value of science and the advances made in all the sciences. I even await new advances. Yet all these advances are based on observation, experimentation, and evidence measured and verified by instruments. 

That thinking not only does not see anything beyond the physical world, but it also refuses to assume that something more exists. It will not allow the idea that something exists that cannot be measured or observed. In their view, belief in God is a foolish crutch without any scientific evidence or proof. That’s true if you only accept proofs verified by the scientific method. Yet scientists who abandon God are in bondage, and they fail to see their own bondage. They are limited to the one vision of life without anything more or beyond the horizon of human observation. Their worldview has a hard ceiling that science cannot penetrate because they refuse to entertain any ideas beyond their own. 

While listening to the Easter sermon, I heard again that Jesus has defied the natural laws. He arose from the dead, and he even predicted that resurrection before it happened. I have no scientific evidence of these events. But the Holy Spirit has smashed the ceiling of limited human thought and allowed me to think beyond such physical evidence. God is above this physical world, and he is superior to all human thinking and speculation. He has revealed his love for me through Jesus (Hebrews 1:2). He intervened to break not only the ceiling of my thinking, but he also allowed me to think beyond the natural laws that govern earthly life and death.  

But we must be careful here. I can’t simply imagine anything and claim it is true. The only reliable guidebook I can depend on is the Scriptures.  

With that guidebook, I soar to explore God’s grace. I circle around it as I read the Scriptures, and by its words I marvel at the majesty of his love and his limitless power. The Holy Spirit has given me wings. I glide on those wings and depend on his power in dark and difficult days, as he promises in the Scriptures. Like an eagle, I have a clear vision of Christ crucified and risen again. That vision provides hope for another life in a world no one can yet see except on the pages of God’s Word. I am free because in Christ I can see beyond death and beyond this physical world.  

*Stephen Hawking died on March 14, 2018.


John Braun is executive editor of the Forward in Christ magazine.


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Author: John A. Braun
Volume 105, Number 6
Issue: June 2018

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