Wow. Finally saw the movie. There’s not much to say but, LOVED IT! Well, I guess there’s a whole lot more to say, I’m just not sure how to go about it. I laughed, I cried, I prayed, I worshipped, I prayed some more. A part of me was glad that I was nearly alone (there were only about a dozen people at the afternoon showing) in a dark theater, and another part of me wished that there had been people everywhere and that we had gasped and cried together and leaped and cheered together at the appropriate points.
One of the points of the movie, I believe, is that many of the staunch atheists used to be christian, but were somehow deeply disappointed or hurt by God. Instead of simply venting that disappointment in a rant of some sort the way David did in the Psalms, they decide to flip the switch and turn God off. But God can’t be turned on and off. He’s always on, everywhere, all the time. In the case of the character in the movie, he finally admits that his believing Mom was not healed of cancer and died when he was 12. And so he blames cancer on God.
That’s actually a question that many ask, “If God made everything, why did He make cancer?” God didn’t make cancer. That’s the short answer. The longer answer gets a bit more involved. And it starts at the beginning, in Genesis. I won’t detail it all out, if you want to check it out, pull your Bible off the shelf and crack it open. There’s some really good stuff in there. So, when God made everything, He looked at it, and it was good. And when He made us in His image He said that it was very good. And He set Adam and Eve to tend the Garden and commune with Him. That was the original plan. But…
God did not create us to be automaton replicas of Himself, He made us in His IMAGE. (Father, Son, Holy Spirit – body, mind, spirit). Bill Johnson says it very well in his book Hosting The Presence when he says, “God did not create us to be robots. We were made in His image as co-laborers, working with Him to demonstrate His goodness over all that He made.” (pg. 33) He gave us free will, a choice to say yes to Him or not. He would love for each and every one of us to say yes, but He will never force us to do so. He gave Adam and Eve the Garden to tend, and to eat from, everything in the Garden but the fruit of one tree, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. (Yes, much as my omnivorous self does not want to acknowledge it, the ORIGINAL plan was that we all be vegetarians! It was not until after the fall and sin entered the world that He gave us meat.) The instruction was originally given to Adam, but when Eve was deceived by the serpent, Adam didn’t stop her. He willingly went along with it, even though he knew God said not to, and he ate of the fruit as well. And that was sin, open rebellion against God. It’s like when your Mom says don’t and you look right at her and you DO. Rebellion!
But where did the serpent come from? If everything God made was good, how did this evil, lying snake get there?