I have a Facebook friend who is a sincere and very loving Christian. He likes to post inspirational messages. If perchance he posts something I can agree with, I make a point of telling him so. I would never get into a religious wrangle with him, because he’s too nice a person.
Today he posted this quote from Malcolm Muggeridge: “Every happening, great and small, is a parable whereby God speaks to us, and the art of life is to get the message.” I suggested, mildly enough, that I thought this was a bit self-aggrandizing — a bit lacking in humility. To my surprise, he and one of his friends defended the point that Muggeridge was making.
After meditating on it for a few minutes, I’ve decided that this is one of the defining flaws of Christianity. Certainly not the only flaw, but a more important one than I had heretofore considered.
It would appear that many Christians sincerely believe that the entire Universe is about us — about you and me and the rest of the human crew. There’s God, who created the whole thing, and we humans are his super-duper special creation, with whom he is uniquely concerned. The rest of the Universe exists solely as a backdrop for the giant morality play that unfolds here among us. God’s primary concern, in all of Creation, is to guide us in making the moral choices of which he approves. Everything else is of secondary concern, at most.
I think that sums up Muggeridge’s view. Entire galaxies, spinning in the heavens, exist not in their own right but solely and entirely as illustrations for our benefit of God’s infinite power or sense of beauty.
On alternate Thursday afternoons, from 2:00 to 4:00, I have a stab at believing in God. One of the things I’ve concluded is that if there is such an entity (a proposition that Read more