The meaning of life is one of those age-old questions that has plagued mankind since the dawn of existence. After all, why are we here? Do we have a purpose? Does the universe have meaning within it’s vast array of matter and energy? Or are we products of meaningless natural scientific processes?
It doesn’t matter what your individual beliefs are, the meaning of life is something that strikes a chord with all of us at some point. As I often point out, if there is a purpose and meaning to our existence, then that means something to us as human beings. If not, then life is really pointless and worthless anyway.
If God Exists, What is the Meaning of Life?
If God exists, then we can immediately assign a meaning and purpose for our existence. A God (or The God) created us for a reason, we have a purpose, and everything makes sense. What is that meaning? What is that purpose? It is to fulfill God’s will, live our lives, have a career, make a family, have fun, and then die at the time God appointed for us to die. After death, we are judged by this God, and He chooses our eternal destiny. From that point, we live in an eternal state of existence–either with God, or out if His presence in the eternal lake of fire.
I think most people can agree on the point that if God does exist, we have a purpose, and life has a meaning and that meaning and purpose is defined by God. God, as our creator, gives meaning, and God IS meaning. Some atheists may try to question God’s purpose or meaning, but then it becomes a game of trying to know God’s mind, and frankly, a God I can understand totally is not much of a God. Why should my small mind be able to fathom something like God, when I cannot even fathom how my computer works in its totality.
So the argument then gets kind of pointless because it goes nowhere. All we can do is speculate about God’s nature, how God “is” and what God “is.” But if a supreme God exists outside of all creation and has ever-existed, then we can assume that God Himself has some meaning, some consciousness, and some purpose. Since everything in creation came from this God, it too would automatically have meaning and purpose.
God’s own individual purpose or meaning is unknown to us, except we know that God creates us, loves us, and wants to fellowship with us in eternity. He is the only supreme God, and He has always existed. In the beginning, God is the only thing that existed. If God has meaning, we can assume all other things have meaning. If God has a plan, then we can assume everything else that has come into existence has a purpose in that plan. God is sovereign.
This is similar to a person building something. If a person collect wood, buy tools, and then proceed to hammer the wood together, we can assume that the creation is going to be there for a reason. He or she may be building a house, or a storage building, etc. But none of us would suggest that the man is building it for nothing. Any reasonable person would logically conclude that the man has a purpose for his creation. It was created with purpose in mind.
In this same way, God is the creator of everything that exists. He is the only un-created thing. His creation, then, has purpose and has meaning. It is to be used by Him and for Him. We are a design created by a designer. We were made with meaning, intent, and purpose. The scriptures declare boldly that God has a purpose for us. Look at our Lord’s sweet words to Jeremiah the prophet:
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Anything in creation by itself cannot truly have a purpose. A knife has no purpose unless we create a purpose for that knife (to cut steaks). Humans can have no purpose, unless a higher power created us for a reason. But the good news is that God did create us for a reason: Fellowship and love. Just like a couple of young newlyweds get a strong urge to create children, so God desired to have fellowship with His creation.
In fact, I would take it a step further. We don’t have just one purpose in life, we in fact have tons of purposes in life. We have a purpose to love our family. We have a purpose to find our careers and talents and work at them. We have a purpose as friends. We have a spiritual purpose to choose or reject God’s will. We have so many purposes!! The fun part of life is then fulfilling those purposes, and trying to do the best we can with this gift of life given by God.
I enjoy having a purpose in life. In some of my darkest days of my life, I rejected a belief in God. Those were hard days. When you truly reject God, it can lead to some very dark thoughts (as I will explain in detail later). On those days I felt the worse, I also felt as if life was pointless and meaningless. On the days I felt like I was a part of God’s plan, and my life had a purpose, my spirit overflowed with ecstasy. Having complete faith in God is the best drug in the world, and now I know why the Bible says to have faith. God knows we need that feeling of assurance.
What Is the Meaning of Life if There Is No God?
Atheism is the only belief system I know where they totally reject any God(s) specifically. Of course, other religions (such as Buddhism) may not have a teaching on deities. But atheism literally means (no God or “without God”).
Saying there is no God is no big deal, really. I mean, just saying it doesn’t change anything. But when people really start to consider the implications of this belief, it can be far more dangerous than any suicide-bomber ever hoped of being. I’ll explain why.
What Atheism Teaches About the Meaning of Life
Atheists can be divided on philosophical beliefs about life and human existence. However, most prominent atheists will generally reject the idea of a God existing. Since there is no God, they must have an alternative explanation of how the world got here. That explanation for most is evolution and the big bang. They explain the miracle of life and the existence of the universe as a natural and explainable scientific process that happens in the absence of a God. They suggest this all occurred without a deity (God) guiding the process, and it is completely self-sustaining and natural.
Granted, not all atheists may believe what I am about to say, but most hard-core atheists will agree with these basic assertions about evolution and life (I know because I am copying arguments used by them). This is the big point that atheists will state about evolution:
Things Atheists Often Claim About Evolution:
Evolution has no goal, no purpose, no meaning—This is what they repeatedly say during debates, in their books, and in speeches, and it has huge implications.
First, why do they say this? They generally say this because they reject any notion of God. If an atheist was to say that a force may be guiding evolution, in fact, that is not atheism at all. It is more like Theistic Evolution or Deism (which does accept a “force” or “God” laying the foundation for life). So for an atheist to truly be an atheist, they must reject any notion that a conscious force causes evolution to happen, that a force guided the universe, or that a conscious force did anything at all. Again, anything other than a full rejection of these changes them from an atheist to something else (a deist, theist, etc.). So right now if you are an atheist reading this, but suggest a force is acting upon life or set it in motion, you are not atheist at all.
Second, what does it mean that evolution has no goal, purpose, or meaning? What they are saying is that evolution never had a “goal” to create humans or other creatures. Humans just happened by chance of mutations and natural selection of atoms, proteins, etc. Evolution is not a conscious thing that has a goal to ultimately become something super-evolved. In fact, it has no goals or consciousness. It isn’t trying to do anything. It isn’t trying to become anything. It is nothing more than a blob filling the shape of the container it is given. Furthermore, nothing started evolution. It just happened (allegedly) by completely unconscious and naturally occurring scientific processes and non-living matter. Therefore, it has no meaning, no purpose, and no goals. It means nothing at all really!
This is exactly what any biologist, scientists, or atheist will likely tell you about the nature of evolution (or as some say EVILution). It always creeped me out by the way, how Richard Dawkins always seems to pronounce it EVILution. As if he knows it is evil or something?
Third, what are the implications of this belief system? Here comes the bad news. If the universe simply exists, and it is an unconscious and natural scientific force, then life has no meaning whatsoever. We have no purpose, and life just “happened.” If we are nothing more than evolved goo, then we don’t matter for one second. Just like a glass of water has no purpose or meaning, it just is. We humans have no purpose (if evolution/atheism is correct), and we in fact mean nothing more than a pebble or grain of sand.
If evolution didn’t have a goal, we (as existing creatures) have no goal. If evolution didn’t have a purpose, we (as supposed evolved creatures) don’t have a purpose. If evolution doesn’t have a meaning, then life itself is meaningless. Are you with me here? Good! If you doubt those points, then you don’t fully understand what atheism means.
Okay, so far this is all true of what the mainstream belief that atheists hold. Again, maybe some atheists are more like agnostics and aren’t sure if there is a God and suspect there may well be an underlying purpose to life. And not everyone who believes in evolution is an atheist. But in general, atheists generally accept evolution and believe the things I mentioned above. If you doubt this, read one of their books, listen to a speech, or debate them and ask why evolution happens. They will very quickly point out that it didn’t have a purpose or goal.
So If No God Exists, Why Are Pointless & Meaningless Atheists Still Here?
Now, the funny thing is this: atheists hate for you to take this teaching and point out that they are meaningless and pointless, and they get terribly offended. But my points stand. If evolution has no goals, an evolved creature has no ultimate goal. If evolution has no meaning, life itself has no meaning. If evolution has no purpose in the universe, then life has no purpose.
Let me stop right here, because they will deny this very strongly, and use a few arguments against it.
Arguments by Atheists Who Declare Life Has Meaning or Purpose with No God
- I can make my own meaning in life. I can create my own purpose. I Don’t need a God to have purpose. This is a common answer from atheists after showing how their belief system makes them pointless. This excuse is nothing more than a cop-out to try to make themselves feel better. Sure, everyone can set a goal as we are conscious beings. But that goal means nothing in the grand scheme of things. We are going to die anyway, and in the scheme of the entire universe, your life will have meant nothing (according to atheism, not God). Not only that, but thinking that your life has meaning, when you teach it doesn’t, is a delusion. An atheist who tries to say their life has meaning or purpose is suffering from a delusion far greater than those who believe in a God (as alleged by the “God Delusion” book). Again, an ant may set a goal of doing something, but does that ant truly have a purpose or meaning if evolution is true? Of course not. The ant just happened to come into existence, and it has no purpose or meaning at all, other than what it may perceive in it’s own tiny mind. The same applies to humans. You can set a goal to make lots of money, get famous, feed the needy, love your children, or whatever. Does that mean you or your goals matter even an ounce? Not at all! At least, not if atheism is correct. If atheism is correct, then no matter how badly you want your life to matter, it simply doesn’t. You have no more meaning or purpose to the universe or world than a bacteria, grain of sand, ant, or rain drop. Again, you can save the world, feed all the hungry, etc. But that doesn’t change the fact that it meant nothing at all. The very best you could ever achieve as an atheist is to make the world a better place to go to hell from. All will be lost in death, and the Earth shall surely not survive forever (regardless of your belief system, we all agree on that). Those homeless people will die one day anyway, why not sooner than later?
- The Point of Life is to Live— This argument is used a lot as well. Really? The point of an evolved creature is to live? Wait, I thought life and evolution had no point? See how they want to have their cake and eat it too? On one hand they want to explain how God doesn’t exist at all, but when you point out that they are pointless and may as well jump off of a cliff today (since they are pointless according to their beliefs), it bothers them. They get all “ency” and start shuffling around and getting upset. They don’t like to hear their own beliefs in the context of their own life! When you take their beliefs and apply it to their own life, they don’t like the implications for even one minute!
- The Point of Life is to Have Offspring or Reproduce–Once again, they can’t have their cake and eat it too. If evolution has a goal to reproduce for a creature to continue to exist, then a force must be behind it. Procreation is a goal. If reproduction is a random mutation caused by natural forces only, then it must surely not have a goal. If it has a goal, then it must have some form of consciousness. That would make evolution a type of God. Yet, don’t you find it interesting how life really tries hard to exist. It doesn’t matter if it is an animal, human, or insect. We all strive to exist, and fight to stay alive. I find that so strange for something that allegedly isn’t “trying” to do anything.
- The Point of Life is to Love My Family or Help Others— No it’s not! There is no point at all if evolution is true. You can perceive in your mind that you have a purpose to do those things, but it is a delusion. In fact, it is the “atheistic delusion”. So if you truly believe that there is no God, and evolution has no goals or purpose, then you yourself have no true or transcendent purpose beyond your own mind. Again, anyone can make believe that they are doing something good, or the savior of the planet. But isn’t that really only a delusion that exists within the mind of an evolved creature with no purpose? Of course it is….that is, if atheism is true.
These are the most common replies they use, but as you can see, it is nothing more than a delusion. To create a purpose or to define meaning in life, is nothing more than a delusion or “made-up” thing in the mind of a pointless creature. Few people really take the time to consider this fact, but it is true nonetheless if you fully embrace the implications of atheism.
So pretend you are an atheist for just a moment. What if I came up to you on some street, or in the middle of a crowded place, and pointed my finger at your face and said, “Hey, you are a pointless and meaningless blob. Your entire life is pointless, and you may as well have never existed.” What would your reaction be? Probably an atheist would be upset, right? But here is the funny part, that is exactly what their belief system teaches! Yes, atheists really believe they are nothing more than meaningless creatures. They don’t like to really consider this fact, but it is true if you buy into their belief system. No wonder atheistic dictators like Stalin and others killed people by the millions like they are nothing more than a meaningless ant.
I can tell you right now that I will never buy into that garbage! Who could really be happy deep down believing they are completely pointless and worthless, and doomed to remain that way for eternity? Again, they probably create a delusion in their mind to make them feel as if they actually do have meaning, but they don’t really have meaning if atheism is true.
The “Dark Side” Of Atheism, and What Atheism Means
As I have mentioned before, I myself was an atheist for a brief period of time. After having came to faith in Christ in my mid-teens, I rejected God totally by my early 20’s, and believed in all of the atheist propaganda. What happened next surprised me.
My life over the next few months started to slowly become very cold, lonely, depressing. Why? Because I really dwelled on the implications of the atheistic belief system I mentioned above. If they are right, life is pointless. Life has no meaning, my existence has no meaning, and why even live at all? Why suffer? Why watch everyone I love die? Why struggle to have a career and make money? It certainly isn’t fun every day to do so. Sure, life may have its good moments, but we cannot escape the negative facts of life (pain, suffering, death, failures, etc.).
I am not suggesting every atheist is a depressed or unhappy person, but most I know are bitter or on anti-depressants. As the Bible says, “There is no peace, saith the LORD, unto the wicked” (Isaiah 48:22) But even though some atheists may find a shred of happiness in the pleasures of life, I find it hard to believe that any atheist who really thinks about what I have pointed out above can find the level of joy that a person who believes in God can have. Jesus brings joy. He brings peace. I know.
In fact, have you ever noticed how most of them have a really bitter look on their faces? Take Richard Dawkins for example. It is almost as if his face looks sad and depressed when I look at it. In fact, I Googled his name under Google images, and in almost every picture his smiles do not look genuine. He looks very unhappy in most pictures to me, and even has a distinctive “frown” expression on his face in many pictures, where his lips curve downward.
Who can blame a depressed atheist? I mean, it really makes life lose its luster when you realize it is nothing more than a mistake or natural occurrence with no meaning behind it at all, right? As I myself dwelled on that fact, I became so bitter towards life. I began to hate people with a passion. I grew cold in my heart. Sarcasm and cynicism began to take over my once upbeat and optimistic views. Within a short period of time, I hated even being alive. When anything bad would happen, I would get extremely upset and wish that I had never even came into existence. Then I started to really dwell on what Atheism means. After all, if no God exists, why follow moral teachings at all? Who cares?
I started to realize that atheism itself can’t define morals, nor can it enforce morals. If God does not exist, and life has no meaning, then anything goes, and morals are nothing more than a creation or delusion in the mind of meaningless creatures. Believing that life has no meaning or purpose is the most dangerous belief system in the world, far more dangerous than any suicide bomber hoping to get to heaven with 70 virgins.
If life has no higher meaning than what we create in our minds, then we are free to do what we want at any time. Now, again, I know some “reasonably moral” atheists exist out there (I say “relatively” because we have all sinned and have fallen short of God’s glory). But my question would be, what would it take for that moral atheist to become immoral, and at that point, what is next?
At what point does a moral atheist not commit adultery? When does the urge consume them, and then they just give in and have sex with another person? At what point does an atheist steal? At what point does an atheist murder? At what point does an atheist fully realize that they have no limits, no moral line they must follow? I would argue that when atheists truly understand that concept, then they are a dangerous person.
Some of you may say, “Most atheists I know would never do that.” Or you may point out an example of a religious extremist person who believes that if they kill innocent people they will get untold virgins in heaven. But I would quickly point out that at least that terrorist who did that unGodly act at least recognized something greater than themselves existed. They at least had that right, even though they had everything else totally wrong.
What about an atheist? What happens when we get another Hitler on steroids? Or a Stalin with more power? Or another beast that will rise in the future? Think about it: If nothing has meaning, why not take over the world? Why not kill your enemies and chop them up into little pieces? Why not nuke the world? Why not steal if you won’t get caught? Why not have sex if you won’t get caught? I can’t help but think this is exactly the thinking behind some of the world’s most deadly serial killers. After all, with the state of mind that nothing really matters, and there is no all-powerful God there to judge them, and they cannot escape Him, who can blame them? Why be a moral atheist. That is non-sense. I say if you are truly an atheist, live it up! Go crazy. Have fun. You die anyways. (Note: Please don’t actually do that, I am just making a point).
To illustrate my point, I want you to consider what serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer said:
‘If a person doesn’t think there is a God to be accountable to, then—then what’s the point of trying to modify your behavior to keep it within acceptable ranges? That’s how I thought anyway. I always believed the theory of evolution as truth, that we all just came from the slime. When we, when we died, you know, that was it, there is nothing. . .’
Jeffrey Dahmer, in an interview with Stone Phillips, Dateline NBC, Nov. 29, 1994.
What stops a “moral” atheist in those situations when morality comes into play? What stops a “moral” atheist who realizes life (according to their beliefs) has no meaning? The day a person with power, intelligence, and money realize those facts and choose to act on them, that will be a monster far greater than any religious terrorist. For the atheist does wrong on his own desire, and believes there is no punishment for the deeds they do. The only reward is the instant gratification they can feel while they are living. They die anyway eventually, so why not do what they please?
A “moral” atheist can only be moral for so long if they truly realize those facts. Eventually their own desires would consume them. They already think they are animals, how long before they begin behaving like them? Even mature Christians sin, what restrains the atheist?
Keep in mind that the majority of the world population still has a religious belief system. Atheism is a minority belief system, a “cult” of sorts. But can you imagine billions of atheists running the world? It is those that I worry about. The terrorist on the plane is scary, but at least he submits to some higher power with some rules. He is just some guy with misguided beliefs, but he at least has beliefs in something greater than himself.
A Buddhist may not believe in God, but fears to do wrong in fear of bad karma. The atheist with a desire to do evil is a serious problem. They’ll cut your head off and stuff it in a freezer like Jeffrey Dahmer. They act out of evil on their own account,and yet do not believe in any kind of punishment or great consequence after death. And they believe there is no higher power they must answer to.
The person I fear most in the future is not an extremist religious person, or a Buddhist humming in a cave all day. No, not by a long shot. The person I fear is the person who has no regard for love, no fear of punishment, and does only his or her own will–regardless of the consequences. The person I fear believes he or she can do whatever they please, and if things get tough, they can end their life (and don’t have to face a God). Now that is the belief system to be feared!
The Next Hitler or Stalin is Coming: Beware…
Jesus Christ perfectly did God’s will. The Bible teaches that Jesus never sinned. He submitted to God the Father in all things. He put off his own will to follow God’s will. In doing this, Jesus Christ fulfilled God’s will for His life. We could say that out of all the good people that ever existed (prophets, saints, etc.), Christ in fact was the most pure, most loving, and best example of all. He did what was right. He is our example.
There may be loads of other excellent people in the world, but out of all of them, Christ was the representation of perfect love, and perfect obedience to what God required of him. You could say he was the word of God.
There are many extremes that exist in life. Cold and hot. Dark and light. Jesus was pure light, and the coming Anti-Christ will be pure darkness.
Can you image what the world would have been like if Hitler had succeeded? Or if Stalin took over the world? Yikes! That is a scary place to live. But we are destined to experience this epitome of satan (or evil).
Just like Christ, one day someone will come and will be the exact epitome or embodiment of evil. The Bible refers to this person as the “Anti-Christ,” meaning it is completely against and/or opposed to all of what Christ represented & taught.
Consider the Hierarchy of Life for a Moment:
Have you ever really stopped to consider how living things operate? In a colony of bees, one queen assumes the leadership position. In a business, one leader assumes main authority over the workers. In a pack of wolves, one male assumes the leadership role. In a country, one king or one president rules above all. In other words, it is the nature of living things to have a social hierarchy, with one leader who is best fit to rule at the top.
Since the creation of the Earth, there have been separate countries and cities. There has never been one true world-wide leadership that every single group of people submit to, as they have all been able to quickly spread out from each other and dwell in distant territories. However, beware, it is coming eventually.
When we look at the hierarchy of life, we know that Earth itself is destined to become one people, with one world leader, one currency, and probably one language (after-all, it would get pointless to use translators for eternity). It only makes perfect sense. If we are one world, why not have 1 currency, language, and more?
Now we have a group of countries coming together which is laying the groundwork for this to be possible. The United Nations is but one small step in this process, and I am sure this will continue to grow over the next several years (or even hundreds of years) until the ultimate goal is reached.
Consider in the Bible the story of the tower of Babel. The people all had the same language, and knowledge was easily transferred between them. So they decided to build a tower to reach into the heavens, and to worship false Gods. This activity displeased God, so he confused the language & gave them all a desire to spread out. Since this event, humans have been separated by language, seas, and lands.
Yet today, we as a human race have only now fully been able to come back together from this old historic event in Babel. Now, we can read a web page from China (after a quick translation), or chat to someone live in the UK, or email a person in Australia. Communication has now came back, and once again we as a people are forming that one ultimate union and government. Once again, mankind is reaching into the heavens trying to make himself a God.
Technology has allowed us to re-unite with the world. It is now only a matter of time until we all work together to form that one world-wide social order & government. At the top of that government, there will logically be one leader.
Conclusion: Life is Meaningless Without God, But So Fulfilling with Him
God gives life meaning. God is meaning. Without God, life literally has no meaning whatsoever. The only possible meaning life could ever have (in the absence of God), is a delusion created in the constructs of our minds, which will quickly end upon entering death.
But God is eternal, and there has never been a time when our creator ceased to exist. God always was, God always is, God always will be. And the good news is that our God is a holy God. God has a plan and purpose for you. God knitted you together in your mother’s womb.
We may try to perceive or sense that we have a purpose. We may try to perceive that we have meaning. We can perceive that we can make happy memories and enjoy life while we have it, but all of those things are a delusion without the reality of God in the picture. Solomon realized this fact, and wrote about it in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Solomon’s conclusion on the matter was this:
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
If anyone truly believes in atheism, yet finds a reason to live, that is nothing more than a grand delusion. They may as well also believe that they are Santa Claus, or the Easter Bunny, because it would be no less of a delusion. Atheism teaches everything exists without a higher power (God). If evolution didn’t have a purpose or goal, you cannot (by definition) have a purpose or goal since you were allegedly created by something with no purpose or goals.
I hope no one ever really buys into that scam. That is the scam of all scams to suggest your life has no meaning. I tell you the truth, your life has meaning. Your life has purpose. There is a God that created you for a reason.
No one ever creates something without having an ultimate reason or purpose. Would you create a building for no reason? Why would God create you without having a meaning or purpose for your life. Why would God create such a vast universe and complex planet if there was no reason behind it? The answer is, He wouldn’t! God created you to have fellowship with Him, and to fulfill His will.
Without God, life is pointless, miserable, sad, and lonely. You’re gonna die some day. In fact, you dying a very slow death right now. We all are dying (some just sooner than others).
Don’t fall for that crap way of thinking that there is no God, or your life is pointless. Instead, put on the Armor of God & fight against that non-sense. I tell you the truth….God is the only thing in existence worth fighting for. Turn to Christ today.