One of my readers, who calls himself Freethinker Rebuttal, posted this comment on my page:
Andy, you are “a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma”. I have been responding to your posts in a particular way because I was under the impression that you had a falling out with God and were trying to wrap your head around life. As I look at your latest postings, and, please correct me if I am wrong, it seems like you are no longer searching for truth. From the outside looking in on your life as posted through your articles, it really seems like you want to have a worldview that excludes any god, and you are bent on trying to skew things in a way that is belittling those that do believe in a god, specifically the God of the Bible that you got mad at.
If you seek a worldview, and start with the notion that there is no God, or, more specifically, no God of the Bible, then there is a chance that you will not come up with the right answer.
As far as your assessment of me, I can only assume one of several things. Your earlier claims of Christianity are unlike any I have seen. My views and beliefs are nothing like that. Or, you are intentionally distorting another truth, either to rile things up or because your views or so distorted. I like to find common interests or points of view with people, but that is taking things too far. Or you are trying to make a bigger point, saying “That burden is too much to bear for a lot of people.” Which is also incorrect. That may be the reason for some people, and we will never know this side of the grave how many, but, at this point, you cannot honestly believe that about me without having a few screws loose. I believe in God, the God of the Bible, because I cannot find one honest reason not to. I believe it is completely logical and consistent. I do not claim to know and understand everything completely, but I do see it as much better than anything else. I have also grown to know God and love Him from what i have seen from the Bible and from general revelation. Your arguments against it are nothing new, have been answered appropriately, and I could never conceive of anything better.
Your postings claim you will follow God if He winds up being who you want Him to be, or irrefutably proven beyond any doubt in your mind, yet you offer no explanation of what that would be. Christianity has proven to be more logically consistent than your worldview, yet you do not yield. Do you think it is time to admit that it is a matter of the heart and not the mind?
You can conceive of an atheist believing in God, but cannot conceive of a way to share this experience that drove you away from God without giving away other people who were involved? Or, do you think that it is too painful and you do not want to open old wounds? Or that it might be properly addressed and you might see an error in your thinking and have to admit that this crusade against God was wrong?
Here is my answer:
Oh no sir, I’m sorry but your problem is that you seem to think that your worldview is right and the only truth there is, despite your disclaimer that you do not claim to know everything completely.
The way you write your entire piece gives it away. Just because the direction I’m going is opposite yours leads you to conclude that I am “no longer searching for the truth.” Why? Because it’s not your version of truth? I recognize that you and many other Christians see the Bible as the truth, but that is not so for people of other religions or of no religion.
And this sentence says it all, “If you seek a worldview, and start with the notion that there is no God, or, more specifically, no God of the Bible, then there is a chance that you will not come up with the right answer.”
Wow. So in your mind, there already IS a “right” answer and no surprise here, it’s still YOUR version of the truth that’s “right.”
It is also not true that I am bent on having a worldview that excludes any god. I specifically wrote about this in A God I Can Believe In, and even the recent An Atheist Who Believes In God was another attempt to verbalize my ideas about god.
No, sir, I think it’s time for you to re-assess why it is you are responding the way you do. I am searching for the truth as best I can, no matter where it leads. Yes, it leads me to consider strange and absurd ideas at times, but that is what searching is all about.
It is not about staying in the comfortable confines of your own beliefs, but setting fire to them and seeing what kind of stuff they are really made of.
Let me leave you with a story that may either enlighten you or befuddle you more. It does not matter to me either way:
When the master lay on his deathbed, he called his disciple to his side.
“Take this notebook,” said the master. “It contains all that I have learned in this life. But only open it when I am already gone. May it serve you well.”
When the master finally died, the disciple was sad, but also excited to see what was inside the precious notebook. He hurried to his room, locked the door, and slowly, reverently opened the notebook.
That was when he discovered that the pages were all blank.
Originally published in Sunstar Davao.