I recently heard Ravi Zacharias discuss the (3) main reasons he believes people become anti-theistic in their worldview. I refactored them (slightly) to form an acronym I could remember: AHA
Ravi claims in all his years of ministry, all doubt from anti-theists roots (primarily) into one of these (3) categories. They have some PERSONAL ANGER towards God, rooted in the circumstances of their life or in someone they have known, someone close to them. It could be a wide range of things, from an absent father, an abusive peer, a seemingly pointless cancer or a friend losing a child. In the end, that circumstance presents a large gap in the understanding of justice; that is, the chasm between their personal sense of fairness and God’s responsibility to us is seemingly uncrossable.
The second reason (I do not know if these were ordered in priority) is OBSERVATIONAL HYPOCRISY towards Christians (or any faith in general). Unlike subjective personal anger, this is objective reality. People who profess a faith with their mouths act differently with their lives. Their actions are their true testimony and the chasm between the way they actually behave (actions) and the way they claim to live (lip service) is seemingly uncrossable.
The third reason is INSUFFICIENT ANSWERS to various questions. Whether, “How old is the Earth?” or “Did Jonah really get swallowed by a whale?” or “How can a good and loving God allow evil and suffering?” the answers given are insufficiently small bridges that leave the chasm between their mental unease about the understanding of humanity and the nature of our Creator’s purpose for our lives seemingly uncrossable.
As I listened to it, the question I started to ask is which letter and I most guilty of contributing to my anti-theist friends? Undoubtedly hypocrisy. I can paint a pretty picture of how perfect my life is with the best of them, when the truth is that facade is fleeting. It will fade away, unveiling the ugly mess of who I really am. In that unveiling though, you know what happens? I quit being a hypocrite and God glory begins to shine outward, revealing a bridge to the left that’s been there all along, making at least one of those chasms now crossable.
Do I have enough knowledge to provide sufficient answers to challenging questions? Idk. In one way, for those (I think) who are ANGRY enough, there may be NO set of answers that provide sufficiency, but in the other way, there are less angry ones who might just see the bridge off to the right if I had better answers. That is what ServiceSecond.com is mostly about – education and knowledge about God so that we can, at least, provide sufficiency when asked interesting questions.
Do I have enough compassion to love those who are angry? Only God can heal that type of wounded heart, the responsibility is on Him and Him alone, but am I willing to let my worship towards him be sufficient enough to love them in spite and through their anger?