“In Him was life, and that life was the light of man” – John 1:4
Two men Dr. Francis Crick and Dr. Watson were credited with the discovery of the double-helical structure of DNA that lay the foundation to understand the secret of life. That happened in 1953 in Cambridge, UK and for that they were awarded the Nobel prize.
Dr Watson has told the story that when they made the breakthrough, Dr Crick burst into the local pub (the Eagle) and told everyone: “We have discovered the secret of life!”
Dr Crick was smart enough to know that, for all his achievements, while they could claim to have discovered the secret of life, he had not found the meaning of life. In other words they had discovered how life works, i.e. how living organisms, including ourselves, reproduce, pass on genetic characteristics to our descendants etc. These could be largely explained by chemical and physical processes etc.
Several decades have passed. Now scientists understand how genes/parts of our genes are responsible for many of our illnesses. We hope to use gene therapy to somehow improve our lives. Amazing indeed!
But as to the Meaning of life? The purpose of Life?
Is there a Grand Designer (a divine hand) such that our sun must be the one (out of trillions of stars) with intelligent life, intelligent enough to ask the age-old questions such as:
Who am I? Is there a purpose of our being here?
As for purpose, many will agree with the beautiful sentiment:
“If I have helped a broken heart
And help a fainting robin into it’s nest again
I have not live in vain..”
But, why is it that there seems to be a longing for something, someone bigger than ourselves that we cannot satisfy…not in and with the things around us?
While we congratulate ourselves on our human wisdom, no breakthroughs in the sciences nor in any human endeavor, can ever provide answers to these fundamental questions.
What better frame of philosophical reference best integrate the world if not one that has God as its beginning? Forget that and we may be engaged in fruitless philosophical shadow boxing.
Indeed the world overflows with both beauty and ugliness, with warm intimacy and cruel terror. How can those who think only from below (without taking into consideration the Existence and Sovereignty of God and the reality of Sin) sort this out (Ecc 9:2-3)?
In the words of CS Lewis: “I believe in the Sun as I see it rise, but also because I can see the things around by its light”
In the same way, Christianity helps us to integrate, explain the world, both material and spiritual very well. It explains the evil around us it also clearly states that it’s final destruction when good and righteousness will triumph. There is a Divine righteous Creator, our Heavenly Father and our God.
We are still lost and we will remain so until we acknowledge we are spiritual beings and bring our Creator God in. For did not St. Augustine remind us, “Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Him”
Our meaning can only be discovered and recovered in Jesus:
“I am the way, the truth and the life” (John 14:6), “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10)
“In Him was life, and that life was the light of man” (John 1:4)
We can only find the Why in Him who created us.
By Dr Leong Chee Lu (YCKC Bulletin 15&16 December 2018)