The Mice In The Piano
Pastor Joseph Clark - June 19, 2020
“He who denies the existence of God, has some reason for wishing that God did not
- Saint Augustine
“Whoever acknowledges Me before others, I will also acknowledge before My
Father in heaven. But whoever disowns Me before others, I will disown before My
Father in heaven.
- Matthew 10:32-33
Once upon a time there were two little mice. They were brothers, and they lived
their entire lives in a piano. This was the only world that they knew. Their parents
and siblings had all died of old age. However, they were the youngest and so they
were still healthy and were all that remained of their family. They spent most of
their days in awe, enjoying the wonderful music that filled their piano world. The
music came from someone and somewhere invisible to them. They were raised by
their parents to believe that the music came from a great giant being who played the
piano. The two mice loved to think about and talk about the great player who made
the wondrous music.
One day, one of the mice went exploring throughout the piano and came back very
thoughtful and sullen. “There is no great player,” he told his brother mouse. “It is
all a myth. The music is not made by a great player, it is made by wires, and
hammers, and some form of grand mechanical assembly. I have seen it with my
own eyes!” The mice gave up believing in a great player. They felt that they were
very smart and had figured it all out, since they had discovered the design and
construct of the piano. They examined the wires, and the mechanics of the piano
frequently and had a good handle on how the music was made. Life changed for
them. Now that they had knowledge, they had no need for a silly fairy tale such as
a giant music maker who played the piano. It seemed that knowing how the piano
worked made them feel smart and independent. They never inquired amongst
themselves about who constructed the piano or what the origin of the wires and
assembly truly was, because that question hurt their pride and threatened their egos,
which now were inflated by the feeling of independence and knowledge. They
enjoyed the feeling that they were in control of everything.
Meanwhile, outside of their tiny world inside the piano, the great player continued
to play on....
The Holy Spirit tells us in The Word:
And He said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you
will never enter the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 18:3)
But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me and do not hinder them, for to
such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 19:14)
Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall
not enter it.” (Luke 18:17)
And they were bringing children to him that He might touch them, and the disciples
rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the
children come to Me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God.
Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall
not enter it.” And He took them in His arms and blessed them, laying His hands on
them. (Mark 10:13-16)
Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up
into salvation— (1 Peter 2:2)
Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. (Ephesians 5:1)
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written,
“The righteous shall live by faith.” (Romans 1:17)
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it
is the gift of God, (Ephesian 2:8)
In 1897, New York Sun veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church wrote the
following words to eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon:
“VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the
skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except what they see. They think
that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds,
Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s, are little. In this great universe of ours
man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world
about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth
Although in the case of Mr. Church’s article he was addressing the question of a
myth, the existence of Santa Claus, his initial words ring true today of our World.
In our present day 21 st Century information society, more than ever, we live in a
skeptical age. Some of our leading academics and intellectuals do not believe in that
which they cannot themselves see, measure, or prove. All too often, men and
women of this age cannot believe in that which is incomprehensible by their little
minds. All of our minds are little in comparison to the grandeur and glory of God
and His creation.
A close friend of mine who is an Archbishop told me a humorous story of how when
he was a small boy he went to the park with his mother. While he was playing he
ran up to where she was seated on a bench and he said to her: “Mommy did you
know that our sun is just a star and that all of the stars in the sky are also suns?” His
mother looked at him indignantly, took a lit cigarette out of her mouth, and
reprimanded him, saying, “Now you listen to me and you listen good. My bloody
life is complicated enough. The sun is the bloody sun. the stars are the bloody stars,
and that’s the end of it!”
What do we do amidst such closed mindedness? What do we do when those closest
to us attack our faith in the form of making objective statements such as:
“We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in.
Some of us just go one god further.”
— Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion
“To you, I'm an atheist. To God, I'm the loyal opposition.”
— Woody Allen
“Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived.”
— Isaac Asimov
“The Bible has noble poetry in it... and some good morals and a wealth of
obscenity, and upwards of a thousand lies.”
— Mark Twain
“I would love to believe that when I die, I will live again, that some thinking,
feeling, remembering part of me will continue. But as much as I want to believe
that, and despite the ancient and worldwide cultural traditions that assert an
afterlife, I know of nothing to suggest that it is more than wishful thinking.”
— Carl Sagan
Richard, Woody, Isaac, Mark, Carl, you are all mice in a piano.
What do we do when others make such statements? The answer: Forgive them. Pray
for them. Share the Good News of Jesus Christ with them. Be strong in your
conviction and have the faith of a child. Anyone who is a saved Christian knows
that: we see it when we believe it , not the other way around. God does not need us
to debate His existence. That is as pointless as debating the existence of oxygen. If
others reject the Gospel of Christ, there is no need to stubbornly drive your point
home. We are told what to do by our Lord and Savior Himself:
“Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they
trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.
- (Matthew 7:6)
“If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town
and shake the dust off your feet.”
- (Matthew 10:14)
Frequently I am asked “How can you believe in a God of love if that same God flings
us into Hell?”
My answer: “If you are homeless and I offer to give you $1 million, and you refuse
to receive it from me, do not blame me for your poverty. God loves us so much that
He sent His only son to die for us and secure our eternal salvation. If anyone chooses
to reject that gift, they have condemned themselves.”
Or if I am asked, “How can I believe in a God of love who punishes us for doing
what comes naturally?”
My answer: “If your spouse cheats on you, who is responsible? Your spouse for
doing what comes naturally? Or you for holding her to a standard of loyalty and
Or if I am asked, “Why should I believe in God if he causes or permits so much
My answer: “If you never had to work a day on your life, would you really appreciate
a summer vacation? Is anything of value if you never have to earn it?”
The late Ravi Zacharias stated it this way: “One simple example will be how a baby
will need some shots for vaccination purposes. It will hurt, but the mom knows that
it is for the good of the child and it is out of love. Even to raise the question of evil
and suffering assumes that there is good. If you assume that there is good, you
assume a moral law. If you assume a moral law, then you must assume a moral law¬
giver. And that is what people are trying to disprove, which in the end breaks down
the whole question. If there is no moral law-giver, there's no such thing as good. If
there's no such thing as good, then there's no such thing as evil. If there’s no such
thing as evil, then the question of evil will disappear. In other words, the question
of evil cannot stand on its own without the reality of God.”
Many still need to realize that pain and suffering leads us to Christ. C.S. Lewis
stated it as “Pain and suffering are God's megaphone."
Our lives on Earth are the equivalent to the thickness of a single page of the Bible
compared to eternity being the thickness of the rest of the entire book. This life is
full of suffering and Christ advises us that to follow Him we must take up our cross.
But the rewards are not just eternal salvation, but the joy of becoming part of Christ’s
kingdom now, on Earth, and to join Him spiritually in His Heavenly kingdom when
our bodies die.
There are many who doubt the existence of God despite the fact that the evidence of
his creation and existence surrounds us. Despite the fact that mathematical
probabilities demonstrate that there is no likelihood of creation happening by
accident. Despite the fact that physics, biology, history, science, and math all lead
to a dead-end when they attempt to discount God. Why should this be surprising?
Who invented math, science, biology, physics, etc.? The merciful creator. God.
Yet there are atheists who believe that they know better, than:
John Eccles - Winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his work on
the physiology of synapses. Devoted Christian.
Samuel Morse - Took part in the invention of a single-wire telegraph and patented
it. Developed the Morse code. Devoted Christian.
John Fleming - Founded the electronic age with his invention of the vacuum tube
(thermionic valve); devised the hand rules for electric motors and generators.
Arthur Eddington - Experimentally verified Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity.
Werner JJeisenberg - Formulated the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. Devoted
Charles Babbage - The father of the computer, invented the Analytical Engine, a
Turing Complete computer in 1837 -the first general purpose computer. Devoted
William Thomson (Lord Kelvin) - Codified the first two laws of thermodynamics,
deduced the absolute zero of temperature is -273.15 °C. On the Kelvin scale,
absolute zero is found at 0 kelvin. Invented the signalling equipment used in the first
transatlantic telegraph via an undersea cable. Devoted Christian.
J.J. Thomson - Discovered the electron; invented one of the most powerful tools in
analytical chemistry -the mass spectrometer; obtained the first evidence for isotopes
of stable elements. Devoted Christian.
Florence Nightingale - Transformed nursing into a respected, highly trained
profession; used statistics to analyze wider health outcomes; advocated sanitary
reforms largely credited with adding 20 years to life expectancy between 1871 and
1935. Devoted Christian.
Francis Collins - Took part in discovery of the genes for cystic fibrosis, Huntington’s
disease, and neurofibromatosis. Directed National Human Genome Research
Institute for 15 years. Devoted Christian.
Willard Gibbs - Invented vector analysis and founded the sciences of modem
statistical mechanics and chemical thermodynamics. Devoted Christian.
Charles Townes - Invented the laser and maser. Established that the Milky Way has
a supermassive black hole at its center. Devoted Christian.
Isaac Newton - Profoundly changed our understanding of nature with his law of
universal gravitation and his laws of motion; invented calculus; built the first ever
reflecting telescope; showed sunlight is made of all the colors of the rainbow.
Georges Lamaitre - Discovered that space and the universe are expanding;
discovered Hubble’s law; proposed the universe began with the explosion of a
‘primeval atom’ whose matter spread and evolved to form the galaxies and stars we
observe today. Devoted Christian.
Gregor Mendel - Founded the science of genetics; identified many of the
mathematical rules of heredity; identified recessive and dominant traits. Catholic
Robert Boyle - “A deeper understanding of science is a higher glorification of God.”
Defined elements, compounds, and mixtures. Discovered the first gas law - Boyle’s
Law. Devoted Christian.
And this is just scratching the surface of the vast list of advanced minds who have
accepted the reality of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
Believers are in pretty-smart company. The challenge of debating the existence of
God with atheists is not that they do not believe in God. It is not that they think that
they are too smart to believe in God, nor is it that they possess some secret
information. For a debate is not won by who is right. It is won by who is the better
debater. Or in some cases, who yells the loudest. No, the challenge of debating with
atheists is that unlike Christians, they are not a single homogeneous, monolithic group
of humanity. They are a broad group of humanity who subscribe to varying degrees of
different value systems. It is far more challenging to be on the atheist end of the
argument, for to quote Ralph Lewis, M.D. “Theism must explain the problem of evil;
atheism must explain everything else.”
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