Is God needy?
There is much about theism that simply makes no sense to me. And particular strands of that concept are particularly bizarre.
Consider the idea that this deity is all-powerful, all-knowing, etc. This is the most perfect being that supposedly one could imagine. And what are we supposed to be in comparison.
We are allegedly as far removed from this being as we could possible be. We would be like some child’s Play dough sculpture put up against Michelangelo’s magnificent David. The comparison would be comedic, perhaps even tragic. We are told we are horrible flawed creatures while the deity is total and complete perfection.
One Christian web site says that god “is the great and powerful Creator, and we, the insignificant and weak creation. Therefore, we humble ourselves and submit.” They say Jesus is god and “the knees of everyone born or created will bend in reverent homage to him.” They also note,”we must worship God because he commands it!” And if you look at the various web sites of different Christian sects they pretty much agree on this. God wants worship.
We are supposed to worship this deity because he commands us to do so and because he is worthy of worship.
Now I can almost understand why we humans would want to worship such a being -- if he existed. But what I don’t understand is how any perfect being would need our worship. Surely such a being has no needs. There can be no benefit to him at all. He would have no need of praise. Yet he commands us to praise him. Can a perfect being have any wants at all?
Not only does he apparently need this worship but he needs it for eternity. One contemporary gospel song says: “I was created to worship you.” A Baptist Church says: “Humans were created to worship God!” Another fundamentalist site says: “Man and woman were created to worship God and even the hosts of Heaven worship Him.”
So we are left with this perfect being who existed for an eternity and then suddenly creates hosts of heaven and humans. He creates them to worship him. What drove him to do that? Action takes places due to dissatisfaction. A perfect being can have no dissatisfaction and thus no motivation to act. He certainly would not need pathetic and sad creatures constantly telling him how wonderful he is. Is God the ultimate narcissist?
Humans love praise but then we are told we are frail and sinful. I see no reason that a perfect being would have any need of worship.
Now I supposed the typical Christian has not considered this issue. And when faced with this question will reply it is done for our own good. We were created to worship this deity because of our needs not his. But we only have needs because we were created. Certainly prior to our “creation” we could not have needs at all. It was not done to make our lives “better” than they were prior to the institution of worship since we didn’t exist then.
And most of us apparently worship the wrong deity or don’t worship him properly and sufficiently. And for that we are told, by many believers, that we will be tortured for eternity. Not really a good deal if you ask me. If you make an error and worship the wrong god it’s eternal damnation. If you make an error and don’t believe in any deity it’s eternal damnation as well. And unless one is a universalists then Christian theology says that most humans who have ever lived, are living, or will ever live will be tortured for eternity because they were not sufficiently worshipful and believing.
Well, that doesn’t sound like something that was created for our own good. It sounds like something created because this deity was a very needy being indeed. Is this god suffering from an inferiority complex?
Consider the cockroach. Of what benefit would it be to you if the cockroach worshipped you? In fact, what benefit would it be to the cockroach? Yet the chasm between being human and being a deity is supposedly much greater than that between the cockroach and man.
A perfect being must be perfectly content. A perfectly content being would have no reason to do anything. He certainly would not have a reason to create sad, pathetic, sinful creatures for the express purpose of telling him how wonderful he is. A real god would have no need of worship. Our words and worship would mean nothing.