Daily Devotional – I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries
“To promote Godly living in a culture committed to destroying it”
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Remember the Future
Stephen Hawking is one of the world’s most famous and influential physicists. Popularized by his best-selling book, “A Brief History of Time”, he has pioneered many areas of modern physics with his unique way of thinking and his innovative perspectives. God blessed Stephen Hawking with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, forcing Mr. Hawking to consider the world differently, simply due to his exceptional physical state.
Most of what Mr. Hawking writes about is over my head – astronomical physics, the theories of relativity, quantum mechanics, and similar topics. However, he posed a question that puzzled me for years. “Why is it,” he asked, “that we can remember the past but we cannot remember the future?” This question seemed strange at first, but I rationalized it by remembering that physicists deal with topics so far beyond our everyday world that such questions pop up frequently and seem logical. Thus, it didn’t seem like a strange question for Mr. Hawking. I’ve since concluded this is a very normal question.
As any child in kindergarten can tell you, we can’t remember the future because it hasn’t happened yet. This reality was self-evident until I came to faith in Jesus Christ. After accepting Jesus Christ as LORD, however, my perspective was altered in many ways and I changed my thinking about Mr. Hawking’s question. Through the study of God’s Holy Word, I discovered that God has a great memory for the future. Moreover, He has it planned in many ways and has remembered to make it happen the way He remembers it before it even takes place. The ability to remember the future is called prophesy.
A quick survey of the Biblical prophets testifies to God’s perfect memory. Certainly He did a great job remembering to send His Son, Jesus Christ. Remembering what He told us through the prophets, His Son was born of the root of Jesse (Isaiah 11:1, 10), born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14), born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2). God also remembered to have John the Baptist announce Jesus’ arrival (Isaiah 40:3), to have Jesus ride into Jerusalem on a donkey (Zechariah 9:9), to have His Son crucified as described in Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53, to have His Son placed in a new grave where He would not decay (Psalm 16), and He remembered to resurrect His Son from the dead on the third day as prophesied (Matthew 12:40, 16:4, John 2:19). These are but a few of the many promises God has remembered to have fulfilled. What a memory!
In His normal way, God also remembers the future to come. In fact, He has allowed us to share in some of the knowledge regarding future happenings. We, too, can remember the future. In fact, we not only can, we must because we are called to do so. We must remember the end times and that Jesus Christ is coming again. When He is coming, we do not know, but God told us He remembers that Jesus will come again and so He shall. When He says it, it will happen. Jesus will come, riding on a cloud with trumpets sounding (Luke 21:27). It’s the surest thing you can remember about the future, yet it often slips our mind.
In his book, “The Grand Design”, Mr. Hawking asserts that, given the existence of gravity, “the Universe can and will create itself from nothing. Spontaneous creation is the reason why there is something rather than nothing, why the Universe exists, why we exist,” he writes in the excerpt. “It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper [fuse] and set the universe going”, he writes.
Mr. Hawking’s argument appears to me to be flawed. To illustrate, the law of gravity is one of the fundamental laws of physics. All laws have writers or creators; therefore, someone wrote the laws of physics. If not God, whom? Even if the laws of gravity could arrange the molecules from the Big Bang to create the celestial objects and the organic matter necessary for life, how was a mass of protoplasm jump-started from non-living to living? This is the “Frankenstein problem” – only God can give life. Moreover, there is the issue of a soul. Myriad creatures have life, but only man has a soul. The skeptic has only evolution to answer the question, When and how was a soul imparted to man? The believer knows the answer without doubt – God gave man his soul.
Science dominates the realm of cause and effect. Science can tell us what happens when gravity in one mass exerts force on another mass. Science can tell us what happens to light when it passes through a prism, what causes lightning, and many other physical phenomena. However, science will never tell us why we are here. It cannot tell us our purpose. Only God can give meaning and purpose to life, and our purpose is to glorify Him.
Mr. Hawking is difficult to read spiritually. Some of his colleagues claim Mr. Hawking is not trying to deny God and that his views do not exclude a Creator God. To be charitable, one can only hope this is true. However, anyone who knows God and has a personal relationship with Him would be wary to use clever or obscure semantics to marginalize God’s contribution to the Universe. A true believer’s words would be full of praise and quick to give Him all the glory. At a minimum, Mr. Hawking’s phrasing diminishes God’s majesty.
Many great physicists and astronomers are atheists. They can deal with some of the Universe’s most mind-boggling concepts and not blink an eye. For most physicists, it’s their lack of faith that prevents them from remembering the future, not their lack of knowledge. It is normal for the God of the Bible, who created all they study, to remember the future. It’s also normal for His followers to remember the portions of the future revealed to us. Be sure to remember the future and to tell others that Jesus Christ is coming again. Be secure in knowing that He will remember to take you to His Heavenly home in the future (John 14:2-4), as we all, no doubt, remember.
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
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