Spiritual Sarcasm

Funny, you never know who is going to wind up in the news with something to say about God. The case of God was evoked again recently, and I found articles scattered all over my Facebook page about it. It’s only a couple names, but here are a few people weighing in on the God issue recently:

1. A former shock jock radio host.

2. An astrophysicist.

Now, God is a public good. Everyone can have a god, or gods or none at all. So far I don’t think anyone has tried to invoke a copyright (yet.) However, I do find it a little bit funny that the two big “God” stories I’ve heard in the news lately come from the mouth of a shock jock and a physicist.

Meanwhile, in another part of the country, Justin Bieber has just released a very important and official statement on the Hindu religion.

Now I have no ill feelings toward Stephen Hawking. I actually appreciate a lot of what I’ve read by him, I’m a HUGE physics geek, but it’s really sad and pathetic to see so many of my atheist friends leaping over a media statement he made regarding evidence against God. Why? Because Hawking is not a theologian. Every time I’ve heard him mention God it’s been like God were some missing particle or force in physics, the primum movens. And now it seems that, since he’s found the first cause “irrelevant” then he sees no place for God. That, simply, is just poor theology. Yet, that’s the kind of theology most atheists I know tend to buy.

And it is quite simply hypocritical. If I were to come out strong with a controversial statement from the Pope or Kirk Cameron regarding something science related, I’d be bombed with declarations that those men aren’t real scientists and therefore have no ground to talk. And that’s true. Yet, religion and theology in this society tend to be treated as subjects that anyone can speak of without any formal education. If anything, I think a lot of people are even more skeptical of “experts,” because they are “too deceitful” and feel it’s better to trust religious matters to non-experts like Richard Dawkins.

It’s plain foolishness is what it really is. Just some experts stepping way out of their field to come kick a theological dead horse. It’s fundamentally no different than if a bunch of bishops started talking about how stupid scientists and their calorics and philogistons are.

  1. While I appreciate your point, I think what Stephen Hawking is saying is that it is possible to explain the origins of the universe without resorting to an explanation that some divine force did it. It can all be explained via the laws of physics as we now understand them. In that sense, he is talking as a physicist.

  2. He is qualified to give an explanation for the origin of the universe, and as far as I am able to follow all the numbers look good to me. But the “without resorting to the divine” aspect is already taking a theological stance. I don’t think Hawking is able to qualify his statement because I think his understanding of theology is weak. He might think he’s just being a physicist, but whether he means to or not he’s also speaking as a theologian.

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