If you’ve been online for more than a few weeks, you’ve probably gotten into a debate with someone about something. If you’ve been online for more than a few months, you’ve probably gotten into a debate with someone about something bizarre; an issue where you thought there was no debate.
In other words, you’ve likely run face-first into the realization that we live in an age of unbelievable skepticism. I’m guessing that you’ve been surprised at just how many ideas are doubted by someone, somewhere. The annoying thing about the internet is that it unites all the someones and somewheres and gives them an equally public forum for their ideas.
Given that fact, it’s not really surprising that a lot of people doubt everything from the existence of God to the the idea that the earth is round. Beyond the theological reasons for the wild-eyed doubt everywhere (i.e. the suppression of truth in unrighteousness, i.e. Rom. 1:18-30), people are flooded with information via the internet. People often lack the ability to filter out truth from error, and that filtering is made more difficult when there are clever, irrational, or even willfully deceitful people stringing together ideas into conspiracy theories.
How confusing can things get?
Let me give you a hint.
Some people are skeptical enough that they don’t just doubt the existence of people who lived 2,000 years ago and did amazing things. Some doubt the existence of anyone who’s ever done anything amazing, whether it’s writing poetry or rising from the dead. Sadly, some of those people have constructed elaborate and confusing theories that seem overwhelming to most common folks.
Bizarre skepticism, about things that seem to be almost common sense, is all over the place.
So what is a person to do in an increasingly pagan age where far too many people will believe anything?
What hope for Christians is there?
Remember two things:
A. People have always been irrational skeptics.
“Then a demon-oppressed man who was blind and mute was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the man spoke and saw. And all the people were amazed, and said, ‘Can this be the Son of David?’ But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, ‘It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons.’ ” – Matt. 12:22-24
“And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house—for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’ ” – Luke 16:27-31
B. Belief in the gospel is a divine work of God.
“For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake” – Phil. 1:29
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” – Eph. 2:8-9
In our modern era, where a scary amount of people think they have a PhD in all things from Google U, nothing has really changed.
God’s word still penetrates hearts and God still redeems rebel sinners.
Until Next Time,
Lyndon “God’s wisdom is greater than our ignorance” Unger