On A Personal Relationship With God

Recently I was asked by a friend:

“Dave, if God were actually real, wouldn’t you want to have a relationship with him?”

This is a most interesting question, Intriguing actually.

The question presupposes a PERSONAL God in that the question is founded upon the principle of “a relationship”.

In that regard, this question dismisses the concept of a strictly impersonal god.

Which is quite unfortunate, for the concept of god as an impersonal being with no feelings whatsoever as to effect or outcome, might at least be a plausible theory in the light of circumstances as they are.

Such a view of God might be classified as “Naturalism”, or “Pantheism” (I have a difficult time distinguishing the two), in that such would identify a deity in the context of our materialistic reality.

For regardless of one’s perspective, surely it is evident that we exist in a Universe which in and of itself is indifferent as to our well being in any given situation.

For example, if you are in the path of a tornado, the tornado will not “have a change of heart” and alter its course so as to not inflict bodily harm upon you or to prevent your untimely demise. Indeed not. If you are in the path of a tornado, it will either alter its course due to some action of natural physics, or else you and tornado will meet head on.

Similarly, the tree that falls in the direction of a baby will not alter its course to save the baby.

Such is the nature of our Universe.

The principle of physics as they are do not reveal evidence of anything other than an impersonal reality with no concerns whatsoever for effect or outcome. If one is inclined to envision this impersonal phenomena as a deity, then such a deity is non personal, and thus not given to being in a “relationship” with anyone as such.

On the other hand, if there is a god with whom someone can have a “relationship”, then we are talking a “personal” God.

Now, with that premise in mind, I revisit the question that my friend posed to me:

“Dave, if God were actually real, wouldn’t you want to have a relationship with him?”

Now, as the person who posed this question is a Christian, then I can safely assume (he confirmed this by the way), that he refers to Jehovah, the God of the Bible.

With that thought in mind, let us role play the conversation as though I had never even heard of or even knew anything about Jehovah:

Friend: Hey Dave, would you be interested in meeting someone?

Me: I don’t know. Who is it?

Friend: His name is Jehovah.

Me: Well, tell me a little about this Jehovah.

Friend: Well, once he drowned all the babies in the world, and most of the animals while in the process of drowning people whose lives he did not approve of. (Genesis 6-8)

Me: Well, that does not sound very nice. Anything else you can tell me about him?

Friend: Well, another time he commanded his army to kill all the men, women, and children of 60 cities so his people could possess their land. No survivors remaining was the goal. So they killed all the men, and all the women, and all the children in all 60 cities, just as instructed by Jehovah. (Deuteronomy 2:31-3:7)

Me: Wow. Sounds brutal. Anything else I should know about this Jehovah?

Friend: Well, another time he endorsed the killing of men, women, and children by the edge of the sword (Joshua 6:21)

Me: Hmmm…. I don’t know man. This guy is a baby killer and animal abuser, and you want me to meet him? I don’t think so.

Friend: Well… why not? I mean he has some other redeeming qualities that you should take into consideration.

Me: Look, nothing personal man. You have told me enough to know that I really do not want to meet this guy. Frankly, from what you have already told me about this Jehovah guy, it sounds like we do not belong to the same “karass”.

Friend: Huh?

Me: “Karass”. Its a slang term that I once read in a Kurt Vonnegut novel. I guess what I am saying is that based upon what you are telling me, this Jehovah guy and me simply do not have much in common.

Friend: So you don’t think you want a relationship with Him?

Me: Again, nothing personal. But.. no, not really.

———————————————————————————————————————————————–
In closing, let me say this:

I am by nature a gregarious person, who loves to meet and get to know other folks. However, were a person to move into my community who had done and endorsed the things that Jehovah is alleged to have done and endorsed, I honestly do not think I would be a part of any neighborhood welcoming committee.

I don’t mean to be negative. I don’t mean to be disrespectful.

But, frankly, after years of studying the Old Testament, and then finally visualizing what I have read and thought about the suffering and the brutal treatment of babies and animals alike recorded therein and openly attributed to Jehovah; I have come to a conclusion:

I really do not want a relationship with Jehovah.

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8 thoughts on “On A Personal Relationship With God

  1. This is a great post. Thanks!
    Of course this “conversation” could go on and on, as it usually does. A Christian is usually quick to point out the “redeeming” factors quite quickly.

    Friend: But he LOVES you and I so much he gave his only son as a sacrifice to save us from our sins.

    Me: What do you mean, “sacrifice”?

    Friend: Like an offering. Technically it’s a blood sacrifice. His son was beaten, tortured and literally nailed to a wooden cross, suffocated and died. Then he came back.

    Me: Uh…. that’s kind of extreme. Is that why you wear a cross around your neck?

    Etc., etc.

  2. I don’t have to think about it. My answer is “no”. My experience with the god of the bible is that he either doesn’t exist or doesn’t care about the world and the people he supposedly created. I’ll go with “doesn’t exist” because there’s so much more scientific proof that he doesn’t and none that he does. It makes me feel like a nicer person to not feel there’s a hateful, murdering, vindictive god who’s been doing uncaring acts since Day 1. And for those who’ve said people who don’t believe are really egotistical to believe they do everything on their own, “We have to try a lot harder to be the best we can be and treat others as we’d like to be treated.” We don’t have a god to blame our mistakes on or believe anyone but other humans are going to forgive us. While I’m on the subject, humans and other animals are all made of energy and energy never disappears. Energy doesn’t go to an imaginary heaven…..energy is around us everywhere. People who’ve gone before us exist as energy and they can help us, just as we can help them. This is another entire essay, though.

    • This is excellent. You laid out the very process of my own deconversion:

      1. Attempted to reconcile a “good god” w/ A) an indifferent universe, and B) horrible concepts in Bible such as infanticide, genocide, misogyny homophobia, and some of the most horrific of all war crimes.

      2. THAT lead me to FINALLY start paying attention to nature and connecting reasonable dots. I am no Scientist, and even though I do read and watch more material related to the cosmos/nature/universe; still, it doesn’t not require even a Scientist to observe and realize that the concept that “there has to be a divine creator” is a preconception without merit.

      3. Ultimately, I concluded that not only is there no god, that we are better off for the experience.

      Excellent, EXCELLENT comment buttchops. Thank you so much for reading and for your fantastic brief but spot on and to the point commentary in reply!

      Dave

  3. Dave, would you delete my comments in the box above please? I’m over my rant……it’s almost June and it’s safe again for a few months. (o:

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