In previous bulletin articles we’ve been looking at common objections to Christianity. This week I want to look at the objection that we are all part of God and so we are safe.

Some religions teach that everything is God. The rocks are god, the sun is god, the animals are god and humans are part of god too. Therefore humans do not have to worry about the wrath of God against them because of their sin. When we die we will simply go to be another part of God in a different way. The technical name for this teaching is pantheism coming from the Greek word for ‘all’ and the Greek word for ‘god’.

But such teaching leads to a loss of identity. If everyone is God, then what makes you distinct from anyone else?  And what makes you more important than a cat, a tree or a pebble? If everything is God then there is no difference in value.

Thus pantheism ultimately leads to depression. Nobody wants their identity obliterated by simply being part of one great cosmic deity. To lose your identity is a horrible experience – ask someone with amnesia.

Whereas the Scriptures clearly teach that God is distinct from everything else. God is the creator, you are created: ‘Yet, O LORD, you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand’ (Isaiah 64:8). And God treats you differently from the way he treats his other creatures. The Bible teaches that animals and plants are below humans in the created order. So when God relates to you, he is not relating to another part of himself, but to you as a personal human being.

So when Jesus Christ died on the cross for you, he died for you as an individual who God loves greatly. The cross was not simply one part of God relating to another part of God. Such a thought empties the cross of true love – an act of selflessness for another personal being. Thus the way God relates to you as an individual is a wonderful source of joy, not depression. He loves you – you!

Do you recognise that God is distinct from you? Do you recognise that Jesus died for you as an individual? Is this your source of joy?        

Joel Radford.