Not Everyone Who Says To Me, “LORD, LORD” Will Enter The Kingdom Of Heaven…

Matthew 7:21-23 reads,

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

What is the will of God?

Part 1. God’s Will for All Believers

Bible Verses About God's WillJohn 7:17 If anyone’s will is to do God’s will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority.

Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit.

Part 2. Doing God’s Will Out of Trust and Obedience

Mark 3:34-35 And looking about at those who sat around him, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of God, he is my brother and sister and mother.

Romans 8:27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

2 Corinthians 8:1-6 We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints —and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us. Accordingly, we urged Titus that as he had started, so he should complete among you this act of grace.

Ephesians 6:5-7 Bondservants, obey your earthly masters with fear and trembling, with a sincere heart, as you would Christ, not by the way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart, rendering service with a good will as to the Lord and not to man

1 Thessalonians 4:2-4 For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor

1 Peter 2:13-16 Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.

1 Peter 3:17 For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.

1 John 2:16-17 For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world.  And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.

Part 3. Examples of God’s Will as a Plan (A Call)

Romans 1:9-11 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God’s will I may now at last succeed in coming to you.  For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you

Romans 8:28-29 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.

Romans 15:30-33 I appeal to you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God on my behalf, that I may be delivered from the unbelievers in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints, so that by God’s will I may come to you with joy and be refreshed in your company. May the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

1 Corinthians 1:1-3 Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus…

Ephesians 1:1-2 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God…

Colossians 1:1-2 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God…

2 Timothy 1:1-2 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God according to the promise of the life that is in Christ Jesus… 

Part 4. How Can You Know God’s Will?

Clearly the Bible tells us that it is God’s will for “all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1Timothy 2:4). Then as believers we are “to be conformed to the image of His Son” (Romans 8:29). We are taught things in the Bible that will help us to do the things that please God. When you are looking for God’s specific “plan” for your life you must fervently pray for God to show it to you. Remember when you are praying that God will open and close doors along the way. When God opens a door – walk through it. When God closes a door; do not open it back up. Make your plan as though God will bless it and then execute it. He will reveal to you what He wants for you and don’t ever forget that His grace is sufficient for whatever come what may. That’s a promise!

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How Churches Drive New Comers Away

If you attend a church regularly, you’ve probably noticed the phenomenon. A new person shows up for worship service, but he or she never returns. It is, unfortunately, a common issue in many churches.

One person created a Twitter poll to ask random first-time guests why they chose not to return to a particular church. While some of the responses were anticipated, I admit being a bit surprised with some of them.

Though my poll is not scientific, it is nevertheless fascinating and maybe eye opening to many church leaders. Here are the top ten responses in order of frequency.

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  1. Having a stand up and greet one another time in the worship service. People shouldn’t have to be told to get up and welcome new comers or each other. If the people in your church can’t be bothered to say good morning, or welcome a new face… then you have a real problem, and setting aside an official time of the service to force them to say good morning does nothing to fix that problem. We should naturally want to greet each other and not feel burdened to do so.
  2. Unfriendly church members. This response was anticipated. But the surprise was the number of respondents who included non-genuine friendliness in their answers. In other words, the guests perceived some of the church members to be fake.
  3. Unsafe and unclean children’s area. This response generated the greatest emotional reactions. If your church does not give a high priority to children, or it’s younger members don’t expect young families or young members to attend.
  4. No place to get information. If your church does not have a clear and obvious place to get information, you probably have lowered the chances of a return visit by half. There should also be someone to greet and assist guests at that information center as well.
  5. Bad church website. Most of the church guests went to the church website before they attended a worship service. Even if they attended the service after visiting a bad website, they attended with a prejudicial perspective. The two indispensable items guests want on a website are address and times of service. It’s just that basic.
  6. Poor signage. If you have been attending a church for a few weeks, you forget all about the signage. You don’t need it any more. But guests do. And they are frustrated when it’s not there.
  7. Insider church language. Most of the respondents were not referring to theological language as much as language that only the members know. My favorite example was: “The WMU will meet in the CLC in the room where the GAs usually meet.”
  8. Boring or bad service. People come to be encouraged, to be taught, to be challenged unfortunately the message, the music/praise are often of poor quality because many churches fail to provide what is needed – the Word of God. Many praise bands become there own “machine” instead of including others they fall in love with the stage and forget about their duty as praise team leaders.
  9. Members telling guests that they were in their seat or pew. Yes, this obviously still takes place in some churches.
  10. Dirty facilities. Some of the comments: “Didn’t look like it had been cleaned in a week.” “No trash cans anywhere.” Restrooms were worse than a bad truck stop.” “Pews had more stains than a Tide commercial.”

What should be done? What could be done?

Praising God In The Midst Of Disarray

One of the most important keys that will make it possible for us to walk in Heavenly Culture is our praise. Acts 17:6 talks about how Christians are those who turn the world upside down. As worldly people, we are prone to feeling sorrowful, disappointed and even angry towards God when things don’t work out the way we would like . The last thing I want to do when something goes awry in my life is praise God… however, the presence of praise is voiced continually in heaven.

  • Revelations 4:6 Day and night they never stop saying: “‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.”

Therefore, it is our heritage as citizens of the Heavenly Kingdom that our voices should also be lifted up in praise to our Lord.

  • 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 we are told to, “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

The Lord tells us here that we are to HAVE an attitude of joy, thanksgiving and prayer at all times, no matter what the conditions or circumstances are that surround us.

CLEARING THINGS UP: This verse does not mean that we are to thank God for bad things and tragedies that come our way. It means that we are to remain joyful no matter what is happening in our lives because we have the Lord, and in Him we shall overcome no matter what the devil is trying to do to us. The Lord does not want us to thank Him for the bad things that happen to us because He did not send them. He is NOT the author of evil. We are not to become bitter over life’s circumstances, but rather to continue to rejoice in the Lord. It is the will of God for us to rejoice no matter what comes. It is not the will of God to receive evil things as from Him. It is an insult to God to thank Him for accidents, sickness, tragedy, etc. He does not send those things to us, the devil does.

  • James 4:7 says, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” We are to love and rejoice in the Lord in spite of what the devil tries to do to us.

UNDERSTAND: That one of Satan’s most common tricks is to send something bad into someone’s life in order for us to and blame it on God. If he can get people to believe it is from the Lord, he has an easier time convincing them of his next lie, that God has failed them and deserted them. He follows this up with a further lie, “Why go on serving a God who does these kinds of things to you?” Satan’s real target is to destroy our faith in God. He just attacks different areas to get at different people.

Our prayers should be in an attitude of praise even in the midst of our trials. We should lift our voices and praise the Lord like this,“Father, I praise You and love You, and no matter what the devil is doing to me I know that You shall bring me through victoriously! Show me what I need to do, Lord. Show me the door that I have opened to the enemy. I resist him in the name of Jesus, and I command him to leave with all of his oppression and attacks. Jesus, You are the Lord of my life, and I submit to You and will never deny You no matter what happens. Praise God!”.

If you love music it may be because you have eternity in your heart

Music itself is an amazing thing. The right inspiring lyrics, the melody or even just the right chorus can give you awaken that slumbering spirit inside of you; music provides a quick pick me up to motivate you to accomplish your daily goals; sometimes it’s just a reminder about appreciating the beauty of the world that we live in and provides the lift that we occasionally need to get through the day.

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Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell  – “Don’t you know that there ain’t no mountain high enough. Ain’t no valley low enough, ain’t no river wide enough. To keep me from getting to you”

Swedish House Mafia – “Who’s gonna save the world tonight? Who’s gonna bring you back to life?”

Demi Lovato – “Go on and try to tear me down. I will be rising from the ground”.

Chumbawumba – “I get knocked down, But I get up again, You’re never going to keep me down”

Black Eyed Peas – “Take control of your mind and meditate”

Queen – “And bad mistakes I’ve made a few I’ve had my share of sand kicked in my face – But I’ve come through because we are the champions”.

Ben E. King – “No I won’t be afraid. Oh I won’t be afraid”.

When I listen to these songs the lyrics seem to have a common theme:

  • Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell – ain’t no mountain high enough that will keep God from getting to you. in other words…
    • Romans 8:39 “Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” —
  • Swedish House Mafia – Who’s gonna bring you back to life? 
    • Ezekiel 37:5-6 This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.
  • Demi Lovato –“Go on and try to tear me down. I will be rising from the ground”. 
    • John 2:19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”
  • Chumbawumba – “I get knocked down, But I get up again, You’re never going to keep me down”
    • Revelations 1:18 “I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave”
  • Black Eyed Peas – “Take control of your mind and meditate”
    • Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
  • Queen – W”e  got sand kicked in our face… we are the champions…”
    • Romans 8:36-37 As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”
  • Ben E. King – “No I won’t be afraid. Oh I won’t be afraid”.
    • Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you…”

This may sound weird but for me, everywhere I look, everything I hear is in some way worshiping God our Creator.

Praise and worship seems to be universal. Worshiping is built into our DNA and I believe it is a basic need for every person. A simple definition of worship is to regard with great devotion or to honor as a divine being. Take a second to think about what you are most devoted to in this life and ask yourself, “Is it worthy of my devotion; do I worship a divine being?”

EVERYONE worships something – however, we don’t all worship the same God, but everyone worships something or someone. Since we all worship, we should question the reason for this desire. The most logical conclusion is that we were created by a higher being for the very purpose of worship.

A Mothers earthly love versus the Fathers Heavenly Love

Mother dares anyone to criticize her for wishing she had aborted her son who has Down syndrome; “if I could go back in time, I would abort him in an instant”

A mother who dares anyone to criticize her for wishing she had aborted her son who was born with Down syndrome; “IF I could go back in time, I would abort him in an instant.”

Her argument is very simple…
“Because, while I do love my son, and am fiercely protective of him, I know my life would have been happier and far less complicated if he had never been born. I do wish I’d had an abortion. I wish it every day.

Many people would applaud this woman for her “bravery and honesty” while others may feel disgusted and disagree with her views… nevertheless wether we disagree or not — we should acknowledge the fact that many people today consider the word commitment as a curse word.

This is because we as a society agree with the worldly definition of words like commitment, love, sacrifice… To put it bluntly we as a society hate commitments, no one wants to be totally committed to anything or anyone because it demands too much of us. Look at today’s relationship between man and women — one night stands, instant gratification, divorce etc.., look at governments, companies and the way they run business… look at society as a whole. There is little to no commitment — it’s all about give me now no strings attached kind of relationships — and in this turmoil of self gratification, while the word love (in the true sense) is being lost and redefined as something we drink, today love is conditional something we earn on the basis of conscious or unconscious conditions being met by the lover, whereas in unconditional true love, love is “given freely” to the loved one “no matter what”.

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Even when we look at ourselves (let’s be honest here), commitment is sometimes something for someone else to do because it interferes with our schedules.

  • Webster’s dictionary defines Commitment as: to pledge to some particular course or use.
    In the Bible however, commitment to God is more than a definition, it requires: my life, my soul, my very being inside of me! Not twice a week, or even once a week, but all the time!

When I look at the cross I see just how committed Jesus was to His people and to His mission… even though His mission was inconvenient, even though it was troublesome, tiresome, burdensome, full of awkward moments, disappointments, betrayals, arguments etc… He continued, He persevered… why? Because of His great love for us.

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Many people these are not committed to anything other than their own self and there own desires. The things of God (true love, peace, acceptance, morals etc…) are hardly if ever talked about in a sincere thought out manner even between Christians because we live a life of what is CONVENIENT in God. A clear example of this lifestyle is this: “I go to church on Sunday morning, isn’t that enough?”

Webster’s dictionary defines the word convenient as: suited to one’s comfort or ease.

Are we living a life for Jesus that is suited to our comfort? Do we want to be committed as long at it is easy? What if Jesus decided not to die for our sins … where would we spend eternity today?

Bipolar Disorder: A Quick Recap

The mnemonic DIG FAST helps to outline the clinical presentation seen in mania (mood of an abnormally elevated arousal of energy level)

  • Distractibility
  • Insomnia
  • Grandiosity
  • Flight of ideas
  • Activities / psychomotor Agitation
  • Sexual indescretions
  • Talkative / pressured speech

Depressed Brain

While interviewing the patient suspected of having bipolar disorder it is helpful to pay attention to these signs – patients may report excessive engagement in pleasurable activities (excessive spending, sexual activity etc…)

This elated mood however may change to a low mood associated with low self esteem or even depression, and a restricted emotional expression… these patients who suffer from bipolar disorder are sometimes distrustful and suspicious — and occasionally interpret others’ motives as malevolent.

These patients who suffer from bipolar disorder are often involved in reckless behaviors (irrational anger, fighting, shouting, bragging, drug abuse marijuana, alcohol etc…)

These patients have ideas of grandiosity (an unrealistic sense of superiority), they may believe they have the next great invention or product in hand and spend many sleepless nights reading/studying watching T.V preparing for there “breakthrough”.  These patients are also highly distracted going from one topic to another  and when they speak their speech is pressured and often loud.

Treatment:

Mood stabilizers are needed for maintenance therapy

Lithium (first line treatment) watch out for narrow therapeutic window [ Lithium toxicity > 1.5 mEq/L] note ataxia, dysarthria, delirium, and acute renal failure — this is why we usually avoid Lithium in patients with poor renal function.

Carbamazepine is our (second line treatment) watch out for side effects such as nausea, skin rash (SJS), leukopenia…

Valproic acid and Lamotrigine can also be used

What is our true identity? How do we find our true purpose?

The most important thing is to be victorious over the fight against yourself. If you lose the fight against yourself you won’t be able to truly move forward… So forget about (comparing, competing) with everyone else…

today-i-will-not-stand-in-my-own-way-self-sabotage-failure-give-up-determination-eat-clean-reach-goals-he-and-she

When I was younger, I had no idea who I was and really had no interest in discovering who I was… I was too obsessed with material things, high school, dating, movies etc… but when I went to college I began having conflicts with these issues.

I remember reading many books that suggest ways to discover my identity and purpose in life. Many of the books I read could be classified as “self-help” books because they approached the subject from a self-centered viewpoint.

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All these books are really similar and have the same layout:

  1. Consider your dreams
  2. Clarify your values
  3. Set some goals
  4. Figure out what you’re good at – Aim high
  5. Go for it!

Believe in yourself and you can achieve your goals!!!

Of course, these are all good things to follow and can lead to success. You can usually succeed in reaching a goal if you work hard and put your mind to it. But being successful and fulfilling your life’s purpose are NOT at all the same issue! You could reach ALL of your personal goals, becoming an amazing success by the worlds standard, and still miss the purpose of your life because you never bothered to find out who YOU ARE.

I realized this later in my life that I needed more than what these “self-help” books had to offer.

The Bible says, in Mark 8:35 “self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way to finding yourself, your true self,”

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What is our true identity? How do we find our true purpose? Does a particular job, image, ethnicity, sexual orientation, temperament, or social status determine identity?

If we define identity as a simple list of personal characteristics, we ignore the issue of why we are here on this earth. There is no infinite purpose attached to a hollow and malleable definition of identity.

If you believe there is more to this life than whatever image we create for ourselves, you can look beyond this finite existence and peer into eternity — into some eternal identity. If you have an infinite existence-an after-life, surely your identity is fastened to something beyond this world and your natural life.

When we focus only on how we appear in this life, we can become enslaved to the superficial and limited pursuits adorned by media, culture and society which have no real lasting or satisfying meaning. Our invented images are poor substitutes for addressing our true needs.

The old adage “You can’t take it with you when you go” is an axiomatic phrase that begs the question “What can you take with you then?” There is only one lasting constant which transcends all boundaries from this finite, natural life to the next life – a relationship with the eternal and infinite God.

How Do You Behave Towards Unbelievers?

Colossians 4:5-6 “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Col. 4:5-6(NIV)

How do you behave with and toward unbelievers? Do you like them? Do you hate them? Do you tolerate them? Are you concerned about their salvation? Do you act like them when you aren’t in Christian company? Do you snub them if they aren’t holy? Some Christians think that being kind to unbelievers is like throwing pearls before swine. Then there are Christians who stand on street corners, in malls, and in front of abortion clinics to witness to unbelievers. Others just don’t care one way or another. Where do you fit in? Do you share your faith using hugs or headlocks? Honey or a hammer? Or do you even share your faith at all?

Today I received this message
[Online Person] “Christ never even existed because there are no historians who mention Jesus – this is not surprising since all religions are fake. Go ahead and try to prove me wrong I want to laugh as you try to prove your fairy tale religion go ahead find a historian that mentions Jesus”

Response: Dear truth seeker, here is the information you were looking for; I am giving you just one of the historians

Tacitus the Roman historian and senator. Tacitus referred to Christ, his execution by Pontius Pilate and the existence of early Christians in Rome in his final work, Annals (written ca. AD 116), book 15, chapter 44. Scholars generally consider Tacitus’s reference to the execution of Jesus by Pontius Pilate to be both authentic, and of historical value as an independent Roman source. Eddy and Boyd state that it is now “firmly established” that Tacitus provides a non-Christian confirmation of the crucifixion of Jesus.

Dear believer, do not shy away from hard questions but rather follow this verse from 1 Peter 3:15 “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect”

Your Time IS Your Life

Many things in this world aren’t equal… As I thought about inequality, a list sprung up in my mind:

1. Wage inequality

2. Homelessness

3. Child poverty

4. Health insurance

5. Racial discrimination and Racial gaps in education

6. Incarceration

7. Gender inequality (and we can go on and on) …

Even though all these inequalities are real, God has given everyone the same 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In order to make time for what we truly want.

Time is your most precious gift because you only have a set amount of it. You can invest your time to make more money, but you can’t make more time. When you give someone your time, you are giving them a portion of your life that you’ll never get back. Your time is your life. That is why the greatest gift you can give someone is your time.
Because it is not enough to just say relationships are important; we must prove it by investing time in them. Words alone are worthless. But true love, shows itself in action.

Jesus spoke about this investment of time and treasure in Matthew 6:19-21. Jesus said,

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. 

That is why Jesus says in Matthew 16:26, “What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet they lose their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?”

So I asked myself, what am I investing my time in?

What about you? are you investing your time in everlasting treasures or are you investing your time in things that perish with time?

Dark Matter, Quantum Entanglement and The Theory Of Everything…

Many years ago Hawking [(and most theoretical physicists claimed that the discovery of the Higgs Boson) a.k.a. – god particle ] would lead to ” The Theory of Everything“.

These men were instantly turned into gods – because they claimed that they would be able to understand completely AND explain completely the vast mysteries of the universe.

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Well guess what? The Origin of the Universe remains a mystery, no one, and I mean NO ONE, has a clue as to what happened or how it happened or why it happened. All known Laws of Physics be they Quantum or Classical breakdown at 10 to the minus 43 seconds After the Big Bang [3 Planck Times ].

No one has any clue as to what such a Singularity could have been or how dense . No one knows what becomes of matter once drawn into a Black Hole, nor what THAT singularity is.

No one can explain Quantum Entanglement.

No one has any idea of why the Galaxies are running away at the ever increasing speeds, the farther they are the faster.

Because no one has found any answers, many scientist INFER, that it must be Dark Matter.

Dark Matter? you can ask what is it really? Well… no one knows what it may be (even though many people will try to use big words to explain it — no one knows what it is and those who claim to know are liars), and by the way, no one has detected it… we simply have no explanation. Dark Matter is pure speculation. In fact the discovery of the Higgs Boson created more questions than it answered… which in my opinion is a good thing!

Job 38:4-5 God ask’s a question to those who think they know — “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know!

Truth of the matter is, we DON’T KNOW and everything — from the genesis of this universe to time all remain a total mystery for us, subject to wild human mathematical speculation and imagination. It is our task however, to seek answers and it is this sense of wonder that leads most scientists (and truth seekers) to an enlightenment that there IS in fact a Superior Being – der Alte, the Old One, as Einstein affectionately called the Deity – a Superior Intelligence, the Lord of all Creation and Natural Law.

A scientific discovery is also a religious discovery. There is no conflict between science and religion. Our knowledge of God is made larger with every discovery we make about the world.”

After reading this… Now you all know as much as Hawking.