How do you know there is a personal God, and not just a force?


In an attempt to keep what is sure to be a long answer already as short as possible, I am going to assume the existence of a God and focus on what the nature of said God is, which I think is in line with the spirit of this question.  I find it interesting as well, that the question shows no preference to either creationism or evolution.  I would argue that belief in a God of any kind lends itself to a creationist perspective though not necessarily in the biblical sense.  For the purposes of this response, I will assume the existence of a God who played a role in the creation of the universe.  Whether that role was active and intentional, or passive and unintentional, will be defined through the response.

Let us assume that the universe was created by an all powerful yet unintelligent, impersonal, and unguided force instead of a personal God.  In this scenario, we should be able to find a scientific record of similar and more recent spontaneous acts of creation.  What we see instead is secular science proving in recent years that not only the universe, but also time itself had a singular point of origin.  This points to an intelligent being who is able to not only create at will, but also restrain the powers of creation until a chosen time and for a chosen purpose.

If we were to approach the existence of a personal God from a logical standpoint, we would see that if God isn’t personal and has no traits of personality, then we have already surpassed God since we are personal beings.  Anyone who knows me could make a good argument against my deity.  I am mortal, and most definitely cannot create life.  I think it is safe to say that I have not surpassed God.

Interestingly enough even Webster’s dictionary lacks a definition of God as purely a force.  The closest one is “the incorporeal divine Principal ruling over all as eternal spirit: Infinite mind.”  The phrase “Infinite mind” denotes thought, reasoning, understanding, and personality.  The idea of a power great enough to create the universe and all the life therein being incapable of independent thought seems in itself a contradiction.  Of course there is another option.  What if God does have a personality including independent thought, reason, and a will of His own, but He just isn’t interested in any sort of personal relationship with us?  This school of thought is called Deism.

Deism is defined as “a movement or system of thought advocating natural religion, emphasizing morality, and denying the interference of the creator with the laws of the universe.”  The idea is that God is personal, but He isn’t personally concerned with you or the general state of the earth, or on a larger scale, the universe.  A good analogy for Deism is that of a watch and a watchmaker.  The creator or “watchmaker” creates the universe or “watch.”  The gears are all put into place representing the scientific laws of nature.  The watchmaker then winds the watch, setting the gears in motion, and then steps back to let it run its course.  The creator has no further impact on or intervention in the natural universe.

Deism rose in popularity in the 17th and 18th centuries during what is known as the “Age of Enlightenment.”  The original Deists were people who had been raised Christian, but found that they couldn’t come to terms with some of the basic tenants of the faith such as the Triune Godhead, the divinity of Jesus Christ, the inerrancy of the scriptures, and the virgin birth.  In an effort to avoid throwing out the baby with the bathwater, Deism become a viable alternative by which one could continue to believe in one creator god while sidestepping all of the uncomfortable issues of faith.  However, even Deism breaks down to a matter of faith at an atomic level.

The atoms that comprise all matter whether living or inanimate are made up of particles known as protons, neutrons, and electrons.  Protons and electrons both have a fixed magnetic charge with protons being positively charged and electrons being negatively charged. Every atom consists of a nucleus orbited by electrons.  The nucleus itself is made of positively charged protons, and neutrons that carry no charge at all.  It takes little more than a rudimentary understanding of the laws of magnetism to see that it should not be possible for a nucleus full of positively charged particles to stay intact.  We have all played with magnets enough to know that like charges repel each other and that the forces of repulsion between the two magnets only increases as the distance between the like charged magnets decreases.  The distance between the protons in the nucleus of an atom is very small and as such, the forces of repulsion between protons are astronomical.  Scientists are unable to explain how it is possible for the nucleus of an atom to stay intact.  What they do know is that it has to be held together by the strongest force in the known universe. They have named this force, “The Strong Force.”  It’s brilliant I know.  As Christians we have a different name for that force…Jesus! Colossians 1:17 speaking of Jesus says, “And He is before all things and in Him all things hold together.”

The bible makes it very clear that we have a personal God who knows us intimately and who plays an active role in the day-to-day aspects of the universe. According to Hebrews 1:3, He “upholds all things by the word of His power.”  In Jeremiah 1:5, we see the Lord say “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.”  Not only is God intimately involved with our physical formation within our mother’s wombs, before He even began that process He already consecrated us for a specific purpose that He had in mind.  Ephesians 2:10 tells us that “we are His workmanship, created in Christ for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”  It’s not just the big stuff that concerns God though.  We see in Matthew 10 that He has numbered the hairs on our head and Psalm 121:8 says that He guards our going out and our coming in.  Talk about being concerned with the minutiae of our lives!   1 Peter 5:7 tells us in no uncertain terms to cast our anxiety on Him because He cares for us.  As wonderful as all these verses are, the greatest proof and the clearest example of His love for us is found in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John and in their accounts of the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.  In Jesus we see the full extent of God’s love for us put on display.  The Son of God stepped down from heaven and draped Himself in human flesh.  He lived the perfect sinless life that we are incapable of living.  Then in the purest act of love known to man, Jesus went willingly to the cross to die a substitutionary death on our behalf so that His perfect, sinless life could be credited to our account allowing us to stand righteous and blameless before God.  If that’s not proof of a personal, compassionate, and loving God who is intimately concerned with you personally, I don’t know what is.

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About Brandon Cantello

Husband to Nicole, Lover of God, Dependent on the Spirit, Passion for His Church. My name is Brandon. I love Jesus. For more visit My Blog

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