God spurs many questions

I am not a religious person. However, I am by no means an atheist. I rarely go to church, and when I do, I end up being bored.

That being said, I do believe in God. He proves Himself to me constantly. I do not understand who or what God is. I just believe there is an all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving ruler of the universe.

I know the Bible says that the only way to get to heaven is to believe that Jesus was the son of God, died for our sins and was resurrected.

This is where I run into trouble.

I trust God. I do not trust man when it comes to telling me who and what Jesus was. Not all men who wrote the Bible knew Jesus personally. Because of human nature, man has a way of distorting facts and exaggerating claims. It’s hard-wired into our DNA.

Jesus was supposedly the ultimate sacrifice. Once he gave up his life, sins were now able to be forgiven. Before his sacrifice, we used animal blood to appease God so our sins could be forgiven.

I find this a rather bizarre custom. As an animal lover, I can’t imagine killing an animal for no other reason than to please God and wash away my sins. I also can’t picture God forgiving sins just because we slit a lamb’s throat and let its blood trickle down an altar.

Does killing an animal for no other reason than to please God make sense?

One line in the Bible refers to burnt offerings: “The smell was pleasing to God.” Does this mean God is a meat-eater? I’m not trying to be funny. I just don’t understand.

Another thing is that people who grow up Christian know that their religion is the true one. Is it because this is what they have been taught since childhood?

The same could be said about Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists. If a Muslim or Hindu has been taught since childhood that his religion is the true one, I feel safe to say they feel the same way about their faith as Christians feel about theirs. I’m not talking about fanatics – just everyday Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists.

One thing I am adamant about is never questioning someone’s faith. What someone believes is very powerful and private, and I have no right to question any part of his faith.

There either is a God or there is not. I choose to believe there is. Life for me would have no meaning without my belief in a Supreme being. My philosophy is simple. There is a God. I don’t need to understand Him. I just need to love Him and my neighbor as myself.

John Glover

Augusta

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