Okay, so that's a pretty bold statement in the title, but here's the thing: I have run into this thinking much of my life. And, since it is part of US politics and often makes it into an attempt to influence current events, I've put it into that forum, in order to keep it in a more moderated section. When I was a kid, my aunt was getting all worked up about evolution. I was probably about 8 years old, and I asked her about how her views on the age of the dinosaurs and what she thought about radiocarbon dating. She said that God made things look like they were older. I asked... so, you mean God uses the tools of the Deceiver, in order to deceive deliberately? Because I wouldn't worship a God who was deceitful, because you would never know if that God was telling the truth. And she got really mad, but didn't have an answer. ---- And now I'm running across those same arguments, that God has made things look like they're older in order to deceive. The latest place where I've been exposed to the idea of Yahweh the Trickster is some friends who are upset at the show Cosmos. The Latest "Cosmos" Episode Has the Best Argument Yet Against Creationism | Mother Jones In a nutshell, if the universe is only around 6000 years old, then we'd only be able to see the Crab Nebula and a few other things, but all the other stars wouldn't be visible, because their light wouldn't have had time to cross the necessary distance to make it to Earth. And so my friends said that God made it so the light was created already en route, so the universe would look like it was much older. Same thing with the recent evidence which appears to confirm the Big Bang theory. God did it so it would look just like it would if it were following natural law. And again, my question was the same as when I was 8. "So, God is using the tools of the Deceiver in order to tempt people into not believe in Him based on the evidence they can perceive, using their God-given senses? What a terrible thing for God to do, no? How do you know if any of the Bible is similarly deceit on God's part?" ---- The Catholic Church has managed to embrace the opposite view, that one shouldn't deny what one can perceive, and the Church has had a history of accepting evolution. In 2005, Fr. George Coyne (the Vatican's cheif astronomer) wrote, "Intelligent design isn't science even though it pretends to be. If you want to teach it in schools, intelligent design should be taught when religion or cultural history is taught, not science." CardinalPaul Poupard added a warning about the permanent lesson learned from the Galileo affair, and that "we also know the dangers of a religion that severs its links with reason and becomes prey to fundamentalism." (Is it any wonder that I considered being either a Catholic brother or joining the Jesuits? The Jesuits have produced some amazing scientists.The Vatican has a chief astronomer, for goodness' sakes, while the current Christian fundamentalism in the US raves about the evils of modern astronomy, which produces observable evidence in conflict with their interpretation of Scripture. No wonder they don't like the Catholics..... *laugh*) ---- Anyway, here's the question: Am I the only one who regularly has contact with people who need Yahweh to be deceitful? Or, moving closer to home, do you personally believe that God fabricates evidence which might potentially lead people onto the road to Hell?