By Ron Halbrook
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. … So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Gen. 1:1,27). “In the beginning there was no God, but after a while man imagined and invented God.” Which account is accurate?
A former nun who says man created God is none too smart. Karen Armstrong recently wrote A History of God which claims that God, in the words of a reviewer, “is a product of humankind’s creative imagination” (Time Magazine, 27 September 1993, pp. 77-78). Such nonsense is the product of Armstrong’s not so creative imagination. Solomon wrote about such vain imaginations when he said, “God hath made man upright; but they have sought many inventions” (Eccl. 7:29).
There is no history of God because he dwells in eternity, not in the limitations of time. God rules over history (Acts 17:26). History is the story of man living on earth in the presence of God, at times imagining that God is imaginary.
The charge that man created God banishes man to utter darkness about God, himself, and proper conduct. According to Armstrong’s reviewer, she grants that “the one and only God” found in the Bible gives “meaning and value” to human life and establishes “the dignity of the individual.” Truly, man’s whole meaning and purpose in life is grounded in the reality that he was created by God and in God’s image, and was told by God, “Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man”
(Eccl. 12:13). Man’s meaning, value, and dignity are reduced by Armstrong to the byproduct of his own imagination. In other words, when God is dead, man is dead.
Armstrong is a monotheist who prays “with Jews and Muslims.” Why worship the product of one’s own imagination? How does this differ from worshipping oneself? If there is no God, then man is the highest order of creation and thus assumes the place of God. Satan told Eve, “Ye shall be as gods,” and we are still suffering the consequences (Gen. 3:5). Past generations “who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator,” turned to rampant immorality, violence, and ungodly conduct of every kind (Rom. 1:18-32).
To reveal and confirm his existence, God autographed the universe. “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth his handiwork” (Ps. 19:1-6). The intricate design and harmonious functioning of the universe remind us of its Creator and Sustainer. “For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God” (Heb. 3:4).
God revealed and confirmed his will to man in the Bible. He left his autograph upon its pages.
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
Like the universe, the Bible is made up of many parts which function in perfect harmony to accomplish God’s purpose. Its sixty-six books were written by forty authors over a period of fifteen hundred years and it tells the story of God’s plan to redeem man from sin through His Son Jesus Christ (Jn. 20:30-31). Of all books, it alone reveals man’s origin, nature, duty, happiness, and destiny as ordained by God. The reality of God, the deity of Jesus Christ, and the divine inspiration of the Bible are con-firmed by its fulfilled prophecies and other miracles recorded upon its pages.
“The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God” (Ps. 14:1). Such claims are the result of the deceitfulness of sin, and of men turning from God. Thank God, we can turn back to God and be forgiven of our sins through the blood of his Son. We receive God’s grace when we believe the gospel, repent of our sins, confess Christ as his Son, and are baptized in water for the remission of our sins (Jn. 3:16; Rom. 10:10; Acts 2:38). We cannot “imagine” our sins away by imagining that man created God. “When they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened” (Rom. 1:21). GI
Guardian of Truth XXXVIII: 1, p. 15
January 6, 1994