The Modern Theory of Idolatry, Or Atheists don't Exist

Have you seen Prof Brian Cox's Wonders of the Universe? He's the young and 'hard science' version of Sir David Attenborough and his wildlife documentaries, which have for decades wonderfied the world. Brian Cox has done with the same breathtaking beauty, but with images of stars and the physics of stellar evolution, what David Attenborough has done with biology and the theory of evolution.

Of course, people have been in awe at life on our planet and the wonders of our skies since the most ancient times. Today, science has if anything only increased our wonder; and given a new basis for our idolatry.

The modern mind, just like ancient peoples, idolises creation; our society still looks to the stars and to images of animals, rather than listening to the voice of the Creator. Modern science teaches that the Cosmos is our Father, and Nature is our Mother. They believe this because cosmology teaches that the life-cycle of star birth and death seeded the elements of the creation of life on this planet; and in turn the theory of evolution teaches that the environment's processes of constant change gave birth to life itself and eventually created all the kinds of creatures that have ever developed. In other words, our creator is none other than our wonderful world.

As D. Broughton Knox, in The Everlasting God (1982), pointed out:

"In our own times idolatry, which was a universal substitute for the creator God, has been replaced by the widely held theory of evolution. Both are substitutes for the concept of the creator God. Just as the ancients and the heathen today deified and worshipped the creature as the creator, modeling images of man or birds or animals or reptiles and worshipping these, so for western secular man the modern theory of evolution deifies nature, and acknowledges it as creator of all we see around us. All the beauty and intricacy and all the marvelous arrangements of the natural world are supposed to have evolved by a thoughtless, purposeless, mechanical operation of nature, and in this way the God who made the world is as effectively shut out of the minds of those who are enjoying the blessings of his creation as he was by the false religions of idolatry. Just as the idolaters could not see the foolishness, indeed the stupidity of worshipping gods of wood and stone, which have no life nor purpose nor mind, so modern believers in the theory of evolution cannot see the foolishness of that theory..." (p. 30-31)
For the theory of evolution does not merely acknowledge, as we do, the natural process we see by observation in the changing creation around us -- that the process of natural selection has adapted and continues to shape creatures to survive in their changing environment --but the theory theorises that by this process alone, the 'laws' of the Universe and Nature have created us; that is, the Creation is our Creator, the Universe is itself 'God', the real and only and 'living' deity behind all in the past, causing all in the present, controlling all of the future. This is idolatry, new improved.

D. Broughton Knox was right to also point out:

"Creation implies purpose. In contrast, impersonal evolution is purposeless -- things happen by accident without plan. But creation is a personal activity of an almighty supreme God. Personal action implies purpose and this in turn implies assessment. The doctrine of judgement is closely related to that of creation (p. 34)...

"Creation and judgement are the two focal points around which human life moves. These two truths, closely related because they both spring from a supreme purposeful Creator, should not be far from the thoughts of any. They are central in the Christian gospel, but neither purposeful creation nor future assessment finds any place in the alternative explanation of reality which the modern world embraces and which goes by the name of [the theory of ] evolution." (p. 38)
Brian Cox and David Attenborough are both atheists. They answer, "I do not believe in a Creator; I believe God does not exist." But the Bible's reply of course is, "You believe in a Creator, the Universe; the Creation is your God."

This is the modern idolater; they in fact commit in essence the ancient practice of idolatry. But by making creation the creator, they can call themselves atheists in order to deny the existence of a God who is outside and above Creation, who can and will give judgement. And of course the denial of judgement is the whole purpose of ditching the God who is over all in favour of worshipping his creation instead. But this is not really atheism; they don't exist.


D. Broughton Knox, The Everlasting God, Evangelical Press, 1982.

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