“Let's begin with you. Your life. What is the purpose of your life Christopher?”
This was easy – his life was his work, and he knew that better than anything. “My mission in life is to use my knowledge of science to enhance the quality of life for mankind.”
“How are you accomplishing this?” asked Jesus.
“If we can unravel the mystery of gravity and anti-gravity, life will never be the same. It will revolutionize transportation, construction, production – nearly everything we do will be made easier.”
“Yes – very admirable – and very soon you will succeed, but how will that really make the quality of life better for mankind? How will it make them happier? How will is make them better people?”
“Transportation will be efficient, rapid, and environmentally friendly. Highways will no longer mar the landscape. Accidents will be reduced. The disabled will be free to move about with less stress on their families. There will be less time spent in menial tasks and more time to pursue other interests,” said Christopher with passion.
“Indeed,” agreed Jesus, “life would be different and easier. Let me ask you something Christopher, would people be happier than they were before technology?”
“Of course. Technology and science has cured diseases and prolonged life. It has given mankind the ability to learn about the origins of life. People are indeed happier now and will be in the future with further advancements.”
“Christopher, I have allowed science and technology to flourish for my own purpose. There is a purpose behind every ‘discovery’ that man claims is his own. Sometimes mankind uses these advancements for good and sometimes they use them to promote evil – that is the free agency of man to choose how they use what they are given. But the overall question remains about whether people are happier, and are better people now, than they were 1000, 2000, 3000 years ago. I suppose the real question is, what makes a person happy?”
“Simplicity, ease, peace of mind, lack of suffering,” Christopher stated.
“Most would say money or power are the things that make people happy,” stated Jesus.
“Not from what I've seen. Money seems to change most people. They become careless and wasteful. And sometimes I really don't think mankind can handle power. It seems to make them more miserable and promotes compromise of ideals to enable them to remain in power.”
“You are very observant Christopher. I have always enjoyed hearing your point of view and seeing how you are grounded in good principles. I am certainly proud of you.” Jesus smiled warmly at him.
A strange but pleasant feeling spread through Christopher. He felt as though this man truly knew him and appreciated him for who he was, rather than just his knowledge of physics. “uh... thank you,” said Christopher, almost shyly, and he suddenly felt like a school boy being praised.
“May I tell you my thoughts about happiness?” inquired Jesus.
“Absolutely. You'll find me to be very open minded.” replied Christopher.
“Although many things in this modern age save effort and time, it doesn't bring true happiness. Happiness comes from the heart, from being around those you love, from serving one another, from helping someone do something that they cannot do for themselves. In short, from loving others.”
Jesus continued, “But when things get easy, people tend to get lazy, selfish, and... careless, as you said. These are damaging to the soul. Life today, with its marvelous conveniences, provides more time than ever for people to pursue leisure and entertainment that is distracting to man's real purpose.”
Christopher thought, “Now this man understands me.” Looking into the eyes of Jesus, Christopher saw them beginning to glisten, but he didn't know why.
“People worship what they pursue - their possessions, their knowledge, their accomplishments, and even other people. The knowledge of life's purpose has been lost in the flotsam and jetsam of the fast moving tide of selfish pursuits and instant gratification.” A tear ran down Jesus' cheek. He looked out the window for a few moments, then looked back at Christopher. “They have forgotten me Christopher, and the real reason why they are on earth.”
Jesus looked at Christopher for a moment, then looked back out the window thoughtfully. “Christopher, why don't you believe in me?”
This direct question of such a personal nature set Christopher aback. He quickly looked back to Jesus and was speechless for a moment. After gathering his thoughts he said, “It may seem a bit foolish to say you don't exist when you are sitting in front of me. But I'm not sure I'm really even here – I don't even know where we are?” He cleared his throat and continued, “I am a man of science as you well know. If there is no physical proof, there is no basis of fact to presume you do exist. In all my years of research I have found no evidence whatsoever that there is a god, or a supreme being, or a divine architect to indicate an intelligent design. We simply exist because of some incredible chance occurrences and evolution spanning billions of years.”
“An accident, as it were,” said Jesus.
“Yes – if you want to put it that way. Given enough time and materials, anything is possible – and the origin of the universe and of earth is proof of that. Any other explanation is simply conjecture and is founded upon man's fantasy and a desire to explain his existence.”
Jesus just looked Christopher in the eyes with no change of emotion.
“Sir, I have delved into the very core of matter and understand the workings of particulates so minute that we are only beginning to understand them – after billions of years of existence. There is much we are still yet to discover, but I have seen enough to know that we have a very good hypothesis about the origins of life and the universe.”
“Indeed,” said Jesus, in a respectful manner.
“Besides the physical evidence I have found to disprove a ‘god’, I have also seen the devastation that religion has had upon this world. Most of the destruction, wars, hatred, malice, and violence has come about because of religion – because mankind thinks his actions are performing a service to their god.”
Christopher took a deep breath – thoroughly enjoying the ability to share his knowledge of something he felt so passionately about. This man, whoever he was, would drop this facade and understand fully that religious philosophy is a waste of time and resources. Good for nothing but creating sorrow and pain for everyone.
“If religion can do that much damage,” said Christopher, “there could be no god that would allow such devastation to come because of those who believe in him. Of course religion is not my expertise, so this is simply my observation.”
Christopher had finished his speech and looked Jesus in the eyes for his reaction.
Jesus looked deeply into his eyes for a moment, then replied, “You have brought up many points I would like to address Christopher – and you have said you have an open mind. I request that you be willing to listen with that open mind.”
Christopher nodded tentatively. He had heard the ravings of religious fanatics before and it was never enjoyable – but he agreed to listen, so he would.
“The times you live in are truly incredible. Mankind has knowledge that could not even be imagined 100 or even 50 years ago. There have been many through the ages that have been willing to listen to inspiration and were blessed with minds to comprehend what they were given. Some of them have given credit to God and have recognized that the ideas they were given were greater than themselves. While others are puffed up in pride and give credit to their own genius. I have given man their free agency so they are free to choose how to use the knowledge given to them – whether for good or evil.”
Jesus paused a moment before continuing.
“Christopher, you are one of those chosen to bring forth a great work. You have received knowledge willingly – however you have not recognized the source. Do you recall as a young graduate student when your mind was so sharp that you could not only recall with exactness everything that was said and everything you read, but you understood it. Particle physics was no challenge to you – quantum chromodynamics, quantum and effective field theories, advanced mathematics – nothing seemed to be a challenge. It all made perfect sense. I'm sure you recall.” Jesus said with a smile.
Dr. Jenkins nodded as humbly as he could, but was very proud to be recognized as the marvel that he was.
“Before you were born you knew you would be blessed with a superior intellect. You also knew the challenges associated with it, but you were willing to accept it. You knew that through you would come the knowledge that would bring about a mighty change for mankind. You have already told me of the miracles that anti-gravity will bring about – but what you don't know is that these are only the beginning. Discoveries brought about through you are allowed to be brought forth at this time not by accident, but for a purpose that it necessary to further my work. Unfortunately, others will use it for selfish purposes – to corrupt and oppress, just as computer technology is used for both good and evil.”
Christopher didn't quite know how to respond. This man was claiming to have knowledge of him before he was born – he had never heard such an outlandish claim. Even though he wanted to refute this man, he had agreed to listen - so he continued to look at Jesus.
“Your heart is still hard my good friend, but I appreciate your willingness to listen.”
Christopher nodded slightly.
“There has always been a chasm between science and religion.”
This Christopher could agree with, so he smiled slightly.
“This gap has come about because of the fear of mankind to justify their beliefs which for the most part are a misunderstanding of who I am. They fail to understand that science can be used as a physical proof of me.”
“I must stop you there,” exclaimed Christopher, “you seem to know my understanding of physics, which should also prove to you that I have never seen any proof of you in any of my work.”
“You are a great mathematician Christopher. Can you tell me the odds that life could be brought about by accident? Not only life, but millions of distinct life forms – vegetable, insect, aquatic, animal – with the variety of species you know and many you are not aware of. Even given billions of years of random events, what are the odds that we could end up with this variety of life? Add into that equation that there would only be a single life form – man – that is intelligent enough to not only communicate, but to have sufficient intellect to begin to understand their own nature. You have a brilliant enough mind to understand that the odds of this occurring are so unfathomable that not even you can calculate it.”
Christopher had heard this argument before – many times. He simply said, “the odds are very low. However, it did happen didn't it – despite the odds.”
“The earth where you live Christopher is fragile. The slightest variance in attitude, distance from the sun, position of the moon – all would have disastrous effects. And everything remains in perpetual motion. Is this also a product of chance? Not only our solar system, but billions of solar systems existing in harmony. You have even witnessed the creation of stars within nebula's and still you attribute this to chance and natural occurrence. And not just at the cosmic level, but on the subatomic level. You have seen properties in a single atom that you cannot explain – you only know that that's the way it is. You have seen patterns occur that you have admitted yourself, are so uniform that it would seem to be impossible if left to chance. What about the naturally occurring e and pi and how they are so vital to your everyday calculations. Christopher, think! Your brilliant mind cannot comprehend many things and yet you still attribute them to chance.”
Christopher could see the frustration building in Jesus, but nothing had been said that Christopher had not heard before. “However, it is the way it is. I do not claim to know all things.”
“Will you ever know all things Christopher? Is it possible for the human mind to know all things, understand all things?”
“I do not believe it is possible.” answered Christopher.
“You are correct – no human mind can possibly understand all things. Yet although you say this, you deny that it is possible that I exist, that there is an architect of all things. Yet without the sustaining power of some entity unknown to you, the entire universe would collapse. How many signs can I give mankind and still be denied?”
Christopher sat silent. He had on occasion marveled at the properties of mathematics, physics, and even the human body – how it all seems to work together so well. Yet when one variable changes, the results can be unpredictable. Could it be improbable that random events could bring about such continuity and order?
“Why is it,” continued Jesus as he turned and walked toward the window, “that the more brilliant the mind, the more difficult it is to understand and accept what even the most humble of men have the ability to understand?”
“This chasm between science and religion,” said Christopher, “has come about because there are too many conflicts between the two.”
“Let's discuss them,” said Jesus as he walked back to Christopher and sat down beside him. “Name one.”
“Religionists profess that the earth is only a few thousand years old, yet we have proven through science that the earth is billions of years old.”
“I'm glad you asked that question – indeed the time discrepancy cannot be ignored. This misnomer stems from the misunderstanding of the writings of Moses and others regarding the creation. It has been said by some that a ‘day’ is anywhere from 24 hours to 1 thousand years. In some writings there is an accurate reference to a day meaning 1000 years, but that is not the case with the creation.”
Christopher sat up with this statement. He had always understood that religionists claim that the creation took 6,000 years with 1,000 years of a resting period afterward.
“You can imagine the complexity of creating a balanced ecosystem that contains soil with the correct balance of bacteria, enzymes and proteins. This ecosystem also needs to sustain life with natural resources such as minerals, oil, natural gas and so forth. This all takes time – a vast amount of time. I work with natural properties Christopher. I command the elements to obey and they obey, but there are some things where there is no substitution for time. Yes, the earth is billions of years old. It was created with great care and in the proper order. Of course, my time is not linear – so although tests confirm that the elements of the earth are very old, I didn't stand around for billions of years waiting for it to be finished.” Jesus smiled at Christopher who also grinned.
“Are you saying that dinosaurs roamed the earth?” asked Christopher. Any religious person couldn't quite answer that question.
“Absolutely. Like I said – natural resources had to be developed. There is a process for everything and everything I place on the earth has a purpose – whether man can determine that purpose or not.”
“What about evolution?” asked Christopher.
“Evolution as defined by mankind has many facets. We could spend a lot of time discussing those facets, but suffice it to say that evolution, in its most general meaning, does occur naturally. Genetic drift and mutations are a reality. However – one thing I want to make perfectly clear – human beings were created in my image. They are not a mistake or a product of mutation from other species. The principle of common descent which states that all organisms on earth are descended from a common ancestral gene pool is accurate. And all living cells use the same basic set of nucleotides and amino acids. Natural laws cannot be broken, and living organisms do indeed have common properties – and man is no exception.”
Christopher looked a bit bewildered. Could he accept that religionists had just misunderstood their scripture so it appeared that science and religion could not mix? Yet if he understood this man, they do correlate. They are compatible.
“This is as far as I will go – you are not prepared to understand how creation of life is accomplished – and I tell you Christopher, as bright as you are, you would not understand it. There are laws and principles that man will never know until the appointed time, and only for those who are worthy to learn them. But it cannot happen while in mortality.”
“But if we cannot learn it while we are alive – it will never be learned. I do not believe in any type of after-life.” stated Christopher.
There is no doctrinal evidence that the earth took billions of years to create and that the dinosaurs roamed the earth. We do know that the elements of the earth are much older than 6,000 years however, so the author purports that logically the creation period was lengthy according to man's time, but could be but a few 'days' according to God's time. With regard to the life and death of the dinosaurs before death was introduced to the earth by the fall of Adam, it is conjecture that the dinosaurs were part of the creation period. And that they were allowed to live and die according to natural laws to bring about God's purposes of creating an earth with resources that could sustain vast numbers of people.