“Why does God need our worship?”

This question keeps cropping up in various forms lately in different quadrants of the internet, so I figured I’d blog about it in a post all of its own.  I mentioned this before in another post, but it does keep rearing its head, so here is another go at it.

First, I have to admit that the phrasing of the question itself is a bit puzzling, as I don’t know of anyone or any scripture that claims that God needs our worship in the least.  God doesn’t need anything.  Even if you want to discuss God from the general philosophical point of view of God being the sum of all perfections, that leaves no room for a need, which implies a lack.

There was one atheist/agnostic that seemed to keep returning to the idea of, “maybe God needs our worship because He draws power from it?” asked in a hypothetical way of course.  This reads just like a plotline from Stargate; SG-1 with the Ori.  No, God’s power doesn’t come from outside of ourselves, and this way of trying to figure it out shows human arrogance once more.  The implication is that God is really relying on us for His power, which makes no sense at all.  He had absolutely no issues in creating from nothing without us around, nor in making any of the major decisions about life, the universe and everything.

I feel the question in it’s legitimate form is closer to, “why does God request/command our worship?”  I’m absolutely positive there are many reasons.  Another popular reason non-believers put forth is that God is somehow ego-maniacal…that He demands worship to somehow stroke His ego.  Again, this would imply a lack which does not fit.  Many non-believers delight in trying to paint God as some kind of petulant tyrant.  I do believe that is why this question occasionally makes the rounds.

I think that one of the main reasons that God requests/commands our worship is that it is good for us, as I’ve mentioned before.  Anything else we worship doesn’t work out to benefit us, and in fact, brings harm.  Once more; food, money, other humans, nature, false gods, etc… it never works out.  Stick with worshiping The Perfect Being who loves and cares about you, it works out a lot better in the end.   Another aspect came up when a non-believer insisted that worship is really what keeps someone out of Hell, basically they presented a straw man argument about the nature of entrance into Heaven, or winding up in Hell.  Here is a very revealing bit of scripture:

Matthew 15:1 Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying, 2 Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. 3 But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? 4 For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death. 5 But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; 6 And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. 7 Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, 8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. 9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

10 And he called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: 11 Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man. 12 Then came his disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying? 13 But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. 14 Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.

It isn’t all about worship folks.  There can be those that worship in a way that is completely meaningless.  The worship is in vain.  Salvation isn’t about worship, it is about faith, trust, love, etc…  Worship flows so naturally from these things that many Christians get a bit confused when non-believers get stuck on the idea of worship.   Yes, we get it, you don’t want to bow down to God, but don’t try to twist the idea of worship into something negative, nor some kind of lack in God.

I enjoy this passage too because the disciples are still learning, “but, but, but, you offended the Pharisees.”  Many miss Jesus’ straightforward answer, “Let them alone,” don’t bother with their offended pride, and off they go, the blind leading the blind, let ‘em fall in the ditch.  You see, it was the Pharisees caught up in this fake style of worship that was done, not from love, but from some odd sense of self-pride.  They worshipped all right, but that worship didn’t amount to a hill of beans; again, worship itself is not the point.

Does God deserve worship?  Now, there’s a question.  The answer is absolutely 100% yes, He alone deserves worship.  He’s the Alpha, and the Omega, He is absolutely Holy, Righteous, Just, He is Love, He is our Saviour.  Worshipping in spirit and in truth flows naturally from faith, love and trust.  It is never a negative thing when directed at God from the proper motivation.

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58 Comments

Filed under Atheism, Christianity, Philosophy, Theology

58 responses to ““Why does God need our worship?”

  1. Martin

    But doesn’t Exodus tell us that God is subject to a particular petty human emotion?

    “You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God…”

    Exodus 20:5

    • Kliska

      Quite the contrary, the term jealous here does not carry any of those negative associations most modern English speakers would tie to it. You have to turn to the original context and language to understand that “jealousy,” far from being seen as a petty reaction is really a plus, especially coming from a perfect being. Here’s a good article that touches upon several adjectives as they are applied to God: http://www.christian-thinktank.com/madgod.html

      You also seem to have this idea that God and humans can’t and don’t share any emotions at all, this is not true; the difference is in its outpouring, in its righteousness, in its vastness, etc… The difference between jealousy seen in its proper context, and need for something (such as a “need” for worship) is obvious; the need for something denotes a lack.

  2. Great post with a great wrap up!
    God is worthy of worship!!!

    God bless,
    Terry Michaels
    http://www.strategicbookpublishing.com/ThatIMayKnowYou.html

  3. SEM

    As a mother of four, I had to stop myself from being disappointed when all the things I did for my family were rarely acknowledged. In particular, trying to produce an extra special meal; in spite of battling through a chronic illness to achieve it. Once I walked around town to find a special birthday present using a walking stick while gritting my teeth. I later discovered my knee was broken. At the risk of sounding pathetic, it would have meant so much for a word of heartfelt thanks and a quick hug – . It made no difference that I was not appreciated, I still continued to do my best for my family from a full heart of love – still do.
    The comparison is poor, but I think I understand just a little of why God deserves, and maybe desires, the acknowledgement of our praise and worship. For who He is, and all that He has done, and keeps doing, regardless of our persistent indifference.

    • Kliska

      Yes, and on the other side of things, it is a blessing to us to know that God does see when His light in us leads us to help others even when there is no thanks involved!

  4. Mike Roth

    Why should we worship anything?
    Can’t we just live without groveling?
    Who or what came up with the whole worship concept anyway?

    • Kliska

      Read the post; Why should we worship anything? We should worship God for our own good, and because it is the right thing to do. Can’t we just live without groveling? Worship isn’t groveling, it is showing someone or something that you value it (worth-ship). Yes, you can choose not to worship God, and that means you are also choosing the consequences of your non-belief. Who or what came up with it? That’s an odd question, kind of like asking Who or what came up with love, happiness, awe, etc… Everything good originates with God.

    • I do not believe that God needs to be worshipped. But he wishes for us to love him and one another; love is what holds the universe together. It is in our own best interests to love him and our fellow man; he has destined us to be co-creators with him. Our happiness is his happiness. I don’t know how the worship concept started; certainly he does not want us to grovel.

  5. Pingback: Why Does GOD Need Our Worship? « The Truth Foundation

  6. Neil

    Why do we need to worship? What is the good that comes from it? You say it is the right thing to do, but why is it the right thing to do? Can one believe in God and not worship Him? Why is non-belief bad? <- I know this is a simple question but my understanding is God loves all, and if you are good you go to heaven? You can be morally good and not be a believer, and you can be bad and be a believer.
    Also, in your response to Mike Roth's comment you say everything good originates with God, surely everything bad does too?

    • Kliska

      Read the article again; It is good to do, not only because God commands us to, but also because it is good for us. How is it good for us? It reminds us that we are not the end-all, be-all of creation. We are not perfect, nor really even good, nor really even just…but we know the One who is. Worship is simply showing worth; so we show what we value through what we worship. It is good to worship God, for He is Good and Just and Holy and Right.

      Sure one can believe in God and not worship Him, one can also believe and not trust Him, and those are unbelievers. Going to Heaven has nothing to do with works, but rather if you do or do not have faith (trust) in Jesus. Someone’s morality is only logical if they believe in God; sure an unbeliever can be moral, but they don’t have a logical reason for being so.

      No, evil does not originate with God, but rather is an option based in free will. Free will springs from God and then the creatures with free will have the ability to choose evil over good.

  7. “why does God request/command our worship?… I think that one of the main reasons that God requests/commands our worship is that it is good for us” – I absolutely agree! God asks us to worship Him so we can learn how to open ourselves to receive His love. God loves us all, but not all people know how to receive it.

    I’m not just saying this because I read it in a book or because someone says so. I’m saying this because I was a former Atheist who experienced God’s love and power first-hand. I blogged about it – http://danmarksee.wordpress.com/2012/04/08/an-easter-confession/

  8. ben

    why would a god need worship if he knows what’s in our hearts? is it because doesn’t know everything!? it’s nice to tell a parent you appreciate what they do for you since your parents probably don’t read minds & are not empathic, but god can do so.
    I’m sure god had a reason for the current war in israel & hurricane sandy, but i believe the reason is because god is an a**hole. i haven’t read the catholic church donating 100 million or any temple doing so either.

    • Kliska

      I approved this comment for only one reason; to show how silly it is. First, actually read the article, it tells clearly that God doesn’t need our worship.

      The current war in Israel is being fought by humans who have free-will. Hurricane Sandy was a natural occurrence, you can go google how hurricanes form if you like. God is the creator of all things, and also died for you, to cover your sin so that you can have a relationship with Him if you so choose, it’s up to you.

      BTW, Religious individuals give far more money to charity than other groups, the Catholics are doing their part for victims, as is the Red Cross, as is World Vision and many other Christian affiliated organizations. Quit griping, do some research, and start bringing something positive to the table.

  9. Patty

    Worship brings us closer to God. It develops our relationship with Him. Worship can bring peace and blessings to our lives. It’s unfortunate that so many cannot see the value of worship for their lives. True worship will also bring His presence and when that happens, nothing can compare to that feeling that you’ve touched the heavenly realm. Worship brings the Lord’s power into your life.

    • Kliska

      Exactly. As I mentioned, worship directed at its proper target (God) is good for us, and fulfills an aspect of our human existence. You are entirely correct in that God inhabits the praises of His people.

      • ben

        Worship makes the individual feel good, god reads minds so he doesn’t need formal worship.
        I personally do not need god, I am a grown man who is capable of fending for myself. If i need god to create rain & grow crops then i would have to also blame god for the lives destroyed in earthquakes & hurricanes.
        I find for me instead of wasting time praying to god, i use the time to help others that god doesn’t help.

      • Kliska

        Every now and again I “approve” a comment I normally wouldn’t for example purposes, this is one such comment. You need to reread the article; God doesn’t need worship at all. You owe your very existence to God, and you do indeed need Him, otherwise your life is going to turn out meaningless. As for your idea of “blaming” God for natural acts, that is a bit silly. Our world is set up to sustain life, and this is done through natural processes. Can God intervene in miraculous ways? Sure, but for the main bulk of time, He set up the world to run in a natural manner, and that includes plate tectonics and weather patterns.

        Time is an interesting thing to bring up; you are running out of it. Someday you will die, as I’m sure you agree with, and you will be unable to then help yourself or anyone else. You will indeed come face-to-face with God and condemn yourself. God became man and walked among us, dying for sin, including your sin. Take the time to examine and research the evidence of Jesus and His resurrection. He can be trusted, not just with your present life, but with your eternal one. He is the only one that can help you or anyone else. I pray you come to trust Him.

        To worship is to show something worth; He is the only thing in existence worth anything, therefore all worship belongs to Him, it just has the added benefit of fulfilling us.

      • Kliska

        Ben, as I said, I don’t normally approve comments like yours, and your latest one wound up in the trash. Don’t continue on with a foolish heart, or in such a manner that gives atheists a bad name.

        Here is a link you should read to combat your ignorance of Christianity, an the evidence presented for it. http://thechristianscribbler.com/2009/03/12/feedback-what-evidence-is-out-there/

  10. Scott

    It all in how you interpret this thing.. Personally any true God would never ask for respect or worship let along demand it. Worship is a human quality.. People cannot help but to humanize everything. I canno help but to believe in God.. Can I question things.. Yes of course I can.. Am I going to be punished if I do have questions. I don’t think so. If God wanted sheep then he would stopped at the creation of sheep. I take a very simplistic view of religion no matter what discipline .. Golden rule. It cannot be more simple nor more complicated.

    • Kliska

      Showing worth toward a thing isn’t just a human quality; other beings display it as well, including angels. I don’t think anyone is punished for questioning, but they punish themselves when they get a true answer and choose to deny or ignore it. It’s true that we are not literal sheep, but we are like sheep in our shortsightedness and stubborn natures.

      The Golden rule is the second most important concept, the first is to love God with all of our beings. Love God, love our neighbor as ourselves. To truly love God is to pay attention to His nature, learn His name, and have a personal relationship with Him. Gratefully He came and walked amongst us, as Jesus the Son, lived and died for us so that we could do just that.

  11. ben

    yes i am an atheist & this is one of the reasons why: “For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.”
    this is what you wrote in your 6th paragraph. Well the only interpretation i can conclude from that is U.S. laws should be changed,( since God is a higher authority) so next time my 17 year old curses at me & goes into a rage because i won’t let him drink in my house or cut the grass I should now be allowed to kill him. Of course this goes against Matthew 5:38 verse an eye for an eye which is translated to mean An eye for an eye is the principle that a person who has injured another person is penalized to a similar degree.
    I will fully support you in your quest to allow parents to KILL their disobedient children that curse or swear at their parents. Kliska, please let me know when you talk to your congressman about this.
    Now if you don’t agree with god’s commandment of death then perhaps you should take it up with god or rewrite the bible.
    Ben

    • Kliska

      Ben, let me say right off that any reply you send me will not be published so please read carefully and don’t fire off a knee-jerk reaction, but I am putting this one out there to showcase the attitude and ignorance of a certain brand of atheists. I’ve met many considerate, respectful, and knowledgeable non-believers, but this is a perfect example of the approach within the fundamentalist atheistic majority.

      First, dear readers, notice that the person cites this particular Old Testament scripture as a reason they don’t believe, so right off, this is not a logical argument, but an emotional one. Ben feels offended that the God of the whole universe gets to set the rules, and also hints that he can out moral God. This displays a complete lack of an education on New Testament teaching, and clarification of the old covenant (which is what is contained in the Old Testament). Please see how Jesus handled the case of the woman caught in adultery. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

      Second, Ben, your anger is wasted; you are not under the old covenant, as you have heard of Jesus. You are now making a choice about the new covenant. Right now, you are living in an age of grace, meaning that this death penalty is no longer in effect. You have one choice and one alone; do you trust Jesus or not? That simple. If you do, you are not under the law, but under grace (which is unmerited favor). You see, I would never contact my congressman about an old covenant law that wasn’t even applied to gentiles, and is in fact now null and void.

      Finally, I really do mean this, I would suggest taking a comparative religions course whenever you are able to, so that you can get some basic knowledge about each of the major world religions.

  12. Taekinuru

    Wait, so the Old Testament is largely irrelevant because certain aspects of what the deity and protagonists in that section of the assorted texts that make up what we now call the Bible have said has been overridden by things in later tales? Huh. Never heard of that before.
    In any case, I personally see the worship as being more of a psychological thing that got wrapped up in the stories: it feels good to thank someone for what fortune you recieve, even if that someone is someone who has been described as something of a grumpy sort who would eradicate most of life on earth because they do not match his or her moral values.
    Although, again, Old Testament.
    I seem to not fully understand though, so did Jesus then, as the avatar/demigod offspring/flesh based copy with some data degradation to ensure humanoid mortal form do something that made those that documented his life after his death decide that the older stuff was irrelevant? Or is this a relatively more recent thing to retcon the whole ‘vengeful god’ thing which immediately puts doubts as to the actual power levels of this deity, as a deity that bothers to deal with humans likely has an agenda which they will not naturally do on their own (putting doubt into the whole ‘perfect’ thing this god has going on according to some accounts), or is some kind of monster hazardous to the continued survival of the human race.

    • Kliska

      Your lack of knowledge on this is kind of strange, but if you haven’t studied the core beliefs of the various world faiths, I guess I can understand your confusion. God has always made covenants with mankind, think about covenants as agreements, or contracts, where each party involved agrees to certain things. Just as with man, contracts can be replaced. The old testament is the old covenant, the new testament… is the new.

      Jesus is none of those things that you mentioned; He is God the Son, the very Wisdom of God made flesh. His life, death, and resurrection (all of which has plenty of objective evidence to show that it is a historical happening) fulfilled the old covenant, and made way for the new.

      Changing moral value is irrelevant, God’s righteousness stems from His very character, not changing whim. Far from being grumpy, God is described as absolutely Holy, Righteous, Just and Loving. Justice and Mercy meet at the cross of Christ. I pray that you come to know Him, and to trust Him. Put your blind faith aside and really study the evidence and worldview of Christianity, get to know Jesus, He’s quite alive.

      • ben

        *note: edited for language
        I hear so many Christians now a days claim that the Old Testament is defunct for Jesus was the “lamb” to clear away its rules and regulations. This is just another {moderated edit} scapegoat that Christians use to ignore the atrocities and bizarre laws commanded by their god. Their preachers spoon feed them that the Old Testament is no longer binding so that they can excuse the majority of evil that the bible promotes. I am so tired of Christians manipulating the scriptures so that they can assign a kinder nature to their God, that I have assembled a BRIEF list of verses which clearly show that the Old Testament is not to be ignored. Its laws should indeed be adhered to, for the New Testament demands it!
        I’m sure this will be edited or deleted as the truth is always hidden by those in power.

        ___________________________________________________
        1) “For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV) Clearly the Old Testament is to be abided by until the end of human existence itself. None other then Jesus said so.

        2) All of the vicious Old Testament laws will be binding forever. “It is easier for Heaven and Earth to pass away than for the smallest part of the letter of the law to become invalid.” (Luke 16:17 NAB)

        3) Jesus strongly approves of the law and the prophets. He hasn’t the slightest objection to the cruelties of the Old Testament. “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place.” (Matthew 5:17 NAB)

        So this is just a few things that say the old testament should be followed, Kliska you really should read the bible more so you don’t make mistakes.

      • OE HUBCAPS

        kliska, thank you for posting it in it’s entirety, i wait to see what others comment on my posting. p.s. do you now agree that the old testament is not a covenant to be renegotiated.

      • Kliska

        ‘caps, as you can see from my reply to “ben,” The old testament means “old covenant.” That old covenant isn’t to be renegotiated, it is to be fulfilled, and Jesus fulfilled it. That contract was nailed to the cross along with Christ.

        It is as though you are renting a house and you sign a contract to pay $500.00 a month for 12 months. Once that contract is paid, it is done, and then a new contract can be drawn up. If you want out of the contract, there are instructions about how you can meet those requirements. Biblically speaking, Jesus fulfilled the old contract.

      • OE HUBCAPS

        For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV) Clearly the Old Testament is to be abided by UNTIL THE END OF HUMAN EXISTENCE itself. None other then Jesus said so.

        Date: Sat, 30 Mar 2013 14:01:52 +0000 To: oehubcaps@hotmail.com

      • Kliska

        Are you ready to give your life to Jesus, or at least to study the scripture if you are wrong? One more answer one more time with the scripture you quoted:

        For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:18-19 RSV)

        KJV: Matthew 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. 19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

        He fulfilled it. Now, it can pass away. Now, there is a new covenant offered you.

        How can your righteousness exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees? These individuals studied and kept the law. Your righteousness is nothing, unless it is the righteousness of Jesus that exceeds all other Righteousness. How do you get that righteousness? By trusting Jesus. Praying for you.

      • OE HUBCAPS

        Tell me, how was all fulfilled?

      • Kliska

        First, before I take any more of my or your time, a question from me: Are you willing to re-evaluate your beliefs based on the truthful answers to your questions?

      • OE HUBCAPS

        YES I Am, but what about you, can you accept the truth & reality when presented to you or will you just come up with an excuse

      • Kliska

        Dear ‘caps, I HAVE accepted the truth; Jesus is the Truth.

        Read your scriptures; Jesus Himself declared it finished. He lived a perfect life, fulfilling every law, every jot, every tittle (did you know that the jot and tittles are the small markings in the Hebrew alphabet?) He fulfilled all of it, He shed His blood, He was “kin” to us, as He was human, yet also divine so His sacrifice is infinite, all of those things are required to pay the debt of the law. He did it for any human who would trust that fact. Trust it ‘caps, it will change your life here, and also grant you eternal life in the life to come.

      • Kliska

        Unfortunately now I cannot approve your latest post. Why? Because look at your attitude and your heart. You aren’t interested in the Truth, but just in arguing your point… to what effect? I’ve spent my life studying religions, and the Truth is indeed in Christianity because it teaches Jesus; the Son of God, the Lamb that takes away the sin of the world, the One that paid the price and fulfilled the law for my sake.

        Take your time and read my other Apologetics articles, they already answer your other questions. Again, I’m praying for you and for whatever has caused you to be closed minded and angry. God is very much real, and the evidence is all around you, figuratively and literally.

      • Kliska

        Note to other readers, ‘caps was copying and pasting from an atheist apologetics site. These were not even his own words or arguments. They are the same old arguments that Christians have answered again and again and again. Vitriol and closemindedness doesn’t lend itself to actual conversation, truly disappointing.

      • OE HUBCAPS

        I’M sorry, i wasn’t asking you to print any of this, i was asking you……… as for my attitude, it is believer’s who have an attitude when you dispute anything that makes them or their god look bad.

        I have given you proof from YOUR bible that you are wrong, you have not yet proven me wrong in any way except you say i have an attitude. you have the same attitude when muslims present their belief of god to you or greeks or romans of their god. if belief is enough then you are aware that christ is a minority god on this planet today, just ask any buddhist. and 1 more thing, why can’t protestants, catholics(the original christians) & mormans even agree amongst themselves about jesus & god? It is your own disagreements among the followers of christ that make me an atheist & the ignorance of most not even remembering that jesus is a jew which makes all christians jews.

      • Kliska

        You aren’t asking sincere questions in your own words, you are copying and pasting stuff from a proselytizing fundamentalist atheist website. If you have a sincere question, ask me. You can’t make God look bad, so no fear of that. You haven’t given proof of anything, you’ve quoted a debunked website written by someone that has issues with logic and discourse.

        Christianity is the majority belief ‘caps. Jesus’ followers number in the billions.

        It’s not the disagreements you should be focusing on, it is the bits that we do agree on: Jesus lived a perfect life. He was crucified. He rose 3 days later. Don’t you think He’s worth a look? This is a link to MY OWN article, please read it and the links it contains: What Evidence is out there?

      • ben

        i noticed you didn’t print the bible quotes that might prove my point. you are doing exactly as expected, editing out that which would prove my point & make you and your bible look bad or just prove to be a hipocrit.
        Thank you very much for showing my friends that i forwarded our emails to so they too know that what i say is the truth.

      • Kliska

        ben, I honestly have no idea of what you are talking about. I edited out a foul word, nothing else. Thank you for keeping the stereotype of atheists up.

      • Kliska

        BTW, your also lying by commenting under two different names, while being the same person. Nice try. I wish you would look at all the evidence and facts, Jesus could heal you of that doubt, fear, and anger.

        For my reader’s clarity: “ben” = “OE HUBCAPS”

      • Kliska

        Ben, part of respect is not using foul language to express yourself to strangers, especially when you know that type of language is offensive to many people. Also, take a step back. Amidst all the possibilities there are two to consider here; first that you, who are not a believer, have studied the actual scriptures more than me, OR I have studied not only my own beliefs and scriptures but also all the other major religions, since I teach religions at a college level as a professor in a secular college. I would hope that you could at least admit to yourself that it is possible that I have studied my religion and scripture more than you have, having given my life to God, the Creator of all.

        You need a primer on contract law. Notice that Jesus said that the previous contract will indeed be in effect until all has been fulfilled. He fulfilled the contract ben, so it is no longer in effect. There is now a new covenant in effect. This is not a new teaching, His apostles and disciples taught the same thing. Read the book of Galatians.

        God is kind in that He is just; the old testament is full of truth, and the whole point of it is to point toward Jesus. You really should read the Bible, all the books, all the words. God is not kind in the puppydog sense, He is Holy, Just, Righteous, and completely Loving. God’s Justice and Mercy meet at the cross of Jesus. Please study this historical happening of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Read of Jesus’ words on the cross; it is finished. The contract is paid, the debt is wiped out, you no longer are held to the old law; however, there is a new contract.

        You, ben, to have you sins wiped away, need to place your faith on Jesus. If you don’t come to trust Him, you are not claiming His sacrifice to pay your debt, and you will have to pay it. If you think you can pay it on your own, you are welcome to try, but you will fail. Please take the time to read the scriptures and study the fact of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Praying for you.

  13. jim

    this is such a lame “proof”. first you side stepped the question by fixing its wording and then when you went back to the real question just to say that you told us the answer. even if you consider it an answer that it is good for us – so what? what does god care?

    • Kliska

      My advice “jim,” reread the article it answers your “questions.” Why does God need worship? Answer: He doesn’t. What does God care if it is good for you? Answer; jim, He loves you and desires to have a relationship with you. You are His creation and He would like you to have eternal life in a good and meaningful way. You can accept His gift by simply trusting Him, and faithing on Jesus Christ who lived and died and rose again for you jim, and for anyone who is willing to trust. Why do you need Jesus? Because you are human and I guarantee you have sinned, you have missed the mark of true righteousness and goodness. Therefore, Jesus lived a perfect life for you, and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice to cover YOUR wrongdoings. Why? Because He loves you and the whole world. Accept the gift or not, it’s up to you.

  14. T.Shane

    I say…. Go Kliska!!!! Its clear to me that Ben, caps, or whoever isn’t willing to listen. They only want to be heard. I was brought up with the saying ” God gave us two ears to hear and one mouth to speak” now regardless if your a Christian or not we do have 2 ears and 1 mouth and that kinda makes you think, maybe we should listen more than we speak….. Just sayin. I’m praying that caps, Ben and whoever soften there heart. I love how you answered in kind and with facts Kliska. Keep doing what you are doing. They might not want to hear you know but we will keep praying that the Holy Spirit gets a hold of them later. I believe you planted some significant seed.

    Your Brother in Christ,

    T. Shane

  15. Obviously one does not need a belief in a supreme being to worship, nor, as this post states, does god NEED our worship. So perhaps a good first step here is to ask ourselves what is the purpose of worship. I will contend that worship, sincere or not, is a demonstration of a focus of intent. That when sincere, worship serves to focus one’s intent on that which is the object of worship and works as a vehicle of transformation and that when worship is insincere and self-serving it is arguably NOT worship at all and does little in the way of fostering positive growth. This is an excellent reason why no one should ever be “forced” to worship.

    • joe

      Like Santa Claus, the central theory for Christianity is “believe and be good” and you’ll be rewarded.

      If you don’t believe, you’re going to Hell to burn and be tortured for all eternity. That’s pretty cut and dry.

      Even if an Atheist does good deeds, donates, and does charity work for his whole life out of the goodness of his heart (and not because he’ll be rewarded; in fact, the opposite), he is still not good enough for God and for Heaven. Whereas, a Christian who does bad things, is dogmatic *******, and may even commit a crime or two automatically is welcomed into Heaven because he simply “believed.” That is not just. That is not love.

      Why does God so desperately need our belief in him, our worship? And if you say he doesn’t, consider that if you don’t, he sends you to Hell…which, logically points to him really needing it—since that’s the “biggest sin” you could commit against God—is not believing in him.

      If he wanted us to believe in him so badly, he would’ve shown himself, he would’ve given us evidence, he would’ve popped by and said hello—perhaps fed a few starving children while he was at it.

      • Kliska

        Joe, normally your immature use of language and demeanor would not cut it as far as what comments I allow through. This will serve as a good example to other readers, but I will tell you up front that this is not an invitation to repeat your rant, and in fact, any reply you make to this comment will not be posted. I hope to show you, and the other readers, your mistakes.

        First, you don’t understand Christian theology at all. We don’t go to Hell because we don’t believe in God, we go to Hell because we have sinned. That is every single human’s default destination; mine, yours, Mother Theresa, Mahatma Gandhi, Hitler, etc… We are not good people; humans are self-centered, shortsighted, we lie, we get angry without just cause, and on and on.

        Second, works do not factor into salvation, you said “believe and be good.”

        Third, belief is not enough. The Greek word should be translated to “faith” and the verb “faithe.” That is categorically different than belief. As is pointed out in scripture itself, the demons believe and they are not saved. Humans believe, and yet if they don’t have faith they don’t avoid Hell.

        Forth, the way all of this works is fairly simple. For sin comes death. To avoid this, a sacrifice must be made because where there is sin, there is death, and you will die unless you have a sacrifice that stands in for you. Because you are human, the sacrifice must be human, and because God is perfect and infinite, the sacrifice must also be infinite. The only answer is Jesus Who is both God and man. He is the sacrifice that stood in for your sin. You sin has been totally paid for, it’s a gift to you, and all you have to do is have faith in Jesus and what He did for you. You have to trust it. That’s how you accept the gift.

        Fifth, Justice and Love meet at the Cross. A Just God must punish wrongdoing. We’ve all done wrong. A loving God figures out a way to save us from OURSELVES. Hence, Jesus and His sacrifice. He is not sending anyone to Hell, they choose it. The atheist brags that if God is real he doesn’t want to be where God is. God lets them have their way. The atheist is angry at God for being God, and for being different than they think God should be. That is the creation thinking it can judge the creator. Good luck with that, for God is utter perfection.

        Six, He did all those things you asked for, read the Bible. You have all the evidence you need, and our faith isn’t blind. Study the evidence for the resurrection. Take the time and do your own research.

      • Joe, the new pope has stated that moral atheists of the ilk you have described can indeed make it to heaven. Congratulations.

      • Kliska

        lol Now we have to see if the Pope actually calls the shots or if God does. ;)

  16. Kliska, Is there any reason to believe that we only have one lifetime to get things like this right? If not, what’s up with that? If yes, then doesn’t much of this hand ringing over the specifics of “god’s will” become a mute point? Surely if it is our natural tendency to be drawn to god, then one would imagine that after each successive lifetime one would inevitably get closer and closer, which is not to say that some backsliding couldn’t occur. I believe there are mentions in the Bible which seems to refer to reincarnation, and I do believe a Rabi once told me that it is still a part of Jewish tradition. I certainly believe that if it were in a person’s nature to be a good Christian, that for the vast us of folks, several lifetimes of “trying to get it right” would produce much better results than just one of groping around in the darkness of disbelief and ignorance.

    • Kliska

      There is no reincarnation taught in Scripture, so from a Christian perspective, which is my perspective, the answer to your question is no. We get one life, and after that is the judgment. Scripture teaches that each human has an innate knowledge of God that can be voluntarily shoved out of awareness, so we don’t need multiple lifetimes to be drawn to God, it only takes one, and then our choices have a true impact. Romans teaches that there is literally no excuse to not believe in God, that He has provided both evidence and knowledge of Himself to all of humankind.

      In effect we have one life at this point, but once born as humans we are eternal beings. Christianity teaches that our souls and our bodies will be reunited. The idea of being “born again” preached by Jesus is a spiritual rebirth, not a physical one. We become born again by placing our faith on Jesus, and then we become a new creature in Christ. Traditional reincarnation would teach a cycle of physical birth and death, and that isn’t found in Christian scripture. There is some belief, if I recall correctly, in reincarnation in some Jewish mystical texts.

  17. I believe that should read “Rabbi.” :)

  18. Kliska, thank you for your thoughtful response. As a child, I regularly heard the following passage from Mathew being read in Church, “When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” (Matthew 16:13–4). Even as a child it seemed to me that the implication here was that the contemporaries of Jesus believed in reincarnation. I am actually not aware of any Biblical prohibition to this belief, nor am I aware of any aspect of Christian belief that actually contradicts or conflicts with a belief in reincarnation. In fact, an argument can be made that if one reasonably categorizes “raising of the dead” as reincarnation, the Bible and contemporary Christian belief both seem to embrace the concept.

    • Kliska

      The Jewish mindframe often rests on typologies. What is meant is to see the same parallels in character, actions, personality, etc… that does not express literal reincarnation. As I mentioned, mainstream Judaism never embraced reincarnation, but rather the mystical branches of Judaism are the ones that entertained the idea.

      There are writings in Job and Ecclesiastes that show death is a one time deal, and Hebrews. Specific parts of Hebrews (read chapters 8, 9, 10 for example) explicitly lines out that death occurs once and then the judgment. Further, I’d recommend reading the story of the rich man and Lazarus. Notice I say story and not parable. If one reads that story, and reads of judgment in the new testament, the conclusion is that you die and your fate is sealed, with no do-overs.

      Raising of the dead is actually the antithesis of reincarnation. With a raising of the dead you have restoration (same person, same soul, same body), not a cyclical rebirth. Cyclical rebirth would also be against the ideas of grace and faith vs. works. There is no special set of works you have to achieve for salvation, but rather a faith in the once and for all sacrifice of Jesus, and scripture shows us that we have one shot at it.

      • maximo hudson

        Dear Kliska, thank you for your response which is not only well-thought out, but thought provoking. I think our discussion now involves semantics. Are “raising of the dead” and resurrection (for that matter) forms of reincarnation or are they not? Certainly, they involve the process of reanimation as does the process of cyclic rebirth you’ve referenced. You are correct in pointing out that many Christians believe that this reanimation/reincarnation PROCESS includes the reanimation/reincarnation of some aspect of their current physical body, but this belief seems more related to the mechanics of the process (rebirth) rather than a refutation of the process itself.

      • Kliska

        If we are arguing semantics, that would be word meanings, so we should look at word meanings; Reincarnation is “coming back” in a different body or form. As such, resurrection is not the same as resurrection. In fact, those two things are fundamentally different, so no, they are not the same in form or in function. Reincarnation is separation, while resurrection is rejoining. So, for example, scripture clearly teaches a resurrection and on that day, my body and my soul are reunited. It is never taught that we inhabit a foreign or different body, as with the Atman in Hinduism (for example).

        Definition thanks to the dictionary; Reincarnation: the idea or belief that people are born again with a different body after death

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