What is the Meaning of Life
Fill up the Void in Your Life
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WHAT IS THE MEANING OF LIFE? Program 92 Fill up the Void in Your Life by Ernest O’Neill
Do you have a camera? Yes, a camera. A Nikon, or a Canon, or some other kind of camera? Do you? Would you sell it to me? I’ll give you $50.00 for it (30 or 35 pounds). I’ll give you a $100.00 (60 or 65 pounds). What would you sell it to me for? You’ll settle on a price, I’m sure, and make a little profit.
Now, would you sell me your eye? You say to me, “My eye! No, I’ll sell you my camera if you give me enough for it. But my eye! I can’t replace my eye. No! I wouldn’t dream of selling my eye.” Why wouldn’t you sell your eye? “Well, I need it.” Well, couldn’t you get another one? “No, probably not.”
Even with transplants? “No, I wouldn’t risk exchanging my eye for another eye. No! It’s too valuable for me. I depend on my eye. I don’t depend on my camera the way I depend on my eye.” But your eye is just another camera. It just has a focusing mechanism, the same as a camera. Why wouldn’t you sell me it? You’ll say, “Well, I wouldn’t dream of selling it. I mean, first of all, it’s far better than any camera. Yes, it has a focusing system, but it’s far more advanced than the latest electronic focusing system that we have invented. I couldn’t. It’s invaluable! My eye is beyond value.”
Well, where did you get it? “Where did I get my camera? I got it in the photography shop. Where’d I get my eye? It came with the territory. I just got it. It was with me. I wakened up and there it was. Well, it came from my mother’s body.” Well, where did your mother get it? “Well, she made it.” Well, did your dad and mum make it? Do they know how to make –“No, no, they’re not in the eye business, they’re in the child — well, they’re not in the child business.” Well, how did it come about? You know that you’re forced to say, “Well, I don’t know. It’s kind of a mystery.”
If I said to you, “Well, can you explain where the things like your eye and your ears came from? What about your brain and the other gifts you have? Where did they come from?” The best you can kind of mumble is, “Oh well, well, evolution, you know, evolution. Ã‰lan vital, Big Bang Theory, explosion in the universe, decomposing substance, that’s where it came from.”
Of course, if I said to you, “Your camera — where did it come from?” and you mumbled, “Evolution. Ã‰lan vital. Decomposing substance. Big Bang Theory. Explosion.” You know you would begin to feel that I was looking at you strangely, and you would begin to feel stupid. I would say to you, “Now wait a minute. You know the camera didn’t come from an explosion. You know what explosions produce, and cameras are not some of the things that explosions produce. Now, be sensible. Where did the camera come from?”
You say, “Well, it came from the factory in West Germany,” or “It came from the factory in Japan.” You mention the maker, the Nikon people – they designed it. You can see that it’s carefully designed. You can see how cleverly it’s done. You can see it must have had very intricate hands and very clever minds to design it.
Then, I say to you, “What about the eye?” You say, “Well, it is cleverer than the camera. It is more cleverly designed. It is more compact. It is more spontaneous and natural in its operation. It does last longer. Yes, it must have had some kind of design or designer behind it.” That’s, of course, what we’ve been saying over these past months on this broadcast. All the evidence points to the fact there is an intelligent mind behind the universe who has made and given you the presents that are the most valuable presents you have ever received.
You remember what we said yesterday that the Being behind the universe has shown Himself in this Son of His who lived over 1,960 years ago. This Son of His, who is known, you remember, as Jesus, said that his Father gave us these presents because He loves us. That’s why you have an eye which is better than your Canon or Nikon camera. That’s why you have hearing that is better modulated than the best Bang and Olufsen sound system you could buy.
That’s why you have hands which are cleverer than the most recent thinking robots that we have produced. Because you have a dear Creator who knows you and who has counted even the hairs on your head, and loves you. That’s why He has given you these things. He’s given you these presents not just so that He could see roses being smelled, or so He could see your nose smelling. He gave you these presents because He really thinks a lot of you, and He loves you.
He wants you to be His friend. He wants you to live life with Him beside you as your friend. He wants actually to take part in it. He knows why He put you here. He has thoughts to feed down to you, if you will just listen for them. This is what we’ve been saying. Of course, we shared yesterday that what we have done is refused that whole plan.
We’ve said, “No! We’re not going to depend on Him feeding us thoughts down to us. We can decide for ourselves what to do!” So, we have determined to live life on our own in this world. The result is, of course, we’ve missed something that is vital to us. That is, love! We were made for His love.
That’s why we were made. We were made for the love of the Creator. That’s what gives us our sense of meaning in life. That’s what gives us our sense of value — when we know that He, the Creator of the world, has not only made us as another of the billion little flies in the universe, but that He loves us personally.
That’s why His Son said, “Look! There isn’t a sparrow that falls to the ground –not a little sparrow — that falls to the ground but your heavenly Father knows. Are you not of much more value than many sparrows?” So you are! When you are without that love through ignoring the Creator and living life as if there were no God, and as if you were god, then you miss that love. You have a great lack in your life, a great emptiness. As somebody has said you have a “great God-shaped void” in your life. There’s a great emptiness, a great lack of love. It doesn’t matter how you go through the machinations of your mind, saying, “Oh! I’m not a dependent creature. I don’t need love.” You do need love. This is why you were made. Of course, we have to fill that space somehow, and that’s what we have done from the very beginning of the world. We men and women have tried to fill the void that is left by that lack of love from our Creator.
Because we have ignored Him, He’s been unable to communicate Himself to us. He doesn’t force Himself upon us. This is why He gave us free wills. So, He doesn’t force Himself upon us. If we ignore Him and reject Him, He has to accept that. So, we have lacked His love, and we have a great sense of a need of love. What we have done, of course, is we’ve turned to the world itself to try to get a substitute for that love.
I don’t know if you understand anything of the record of history that you find at the very beginning of the Bible. There’s been so much cynical talk about those early stories being myths, that of course we’ve kind of ignored them. We can talk about that whole charge of being myths in these coming broadcasts. But it is important to see that they actually are the deepest explanation of reality we have.
They’re a very good description of what we’ve done in order to find a substitute for God’s own love. Actually, it’s put there in the form of a Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, you remember. God presented it that way because He was presenting it to mankind in his childhood. It reads like this, “So, when woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one
wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband, and he ate.”
That explains where we looked for to find a substitute for the love we were made for. I’d like to try to explain that tomorrow. Maybe you’d think about it yourself, until we talk again tomorrow.