Pantheism – What is it?
Pantheism is the belief that God is all and all is God. This belief extends beyond polytheism (belief in multiple gods) and states that every person, plant, animal, living and non-living thing, is part of the One. This perspective is held by a variety of religious belief systems. The largest of these include Hinduism and Buddhism, though New Age teachings and other spiritualties also teach this concept.
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What does the Bible teach about pantheism? In contrast with the teaching that God is all, the Bible teaches that God created all things (Genesis 1:1). He is present in all places (called omnipresent), but is still distinct from all things. For example, Psalm 139:7-8 teaches, "Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!" However, this does not mean God is everything. God is distinct, unique, and eternal. All other things are created by Him.
The most explicit teachings against pantheism in Scripture are found in the Bible's many commands not to worship anything but God. For example, if humans are not to worship idols of stone or wood, then it indicates that these items are not really God. If pantheism was true, a person could worship a worm, a car, a person, or the stars and each would equally exist as part of God.
Yet Scripture makes a distinction between the creation and the Creator (Romans 1:20). Those who worship creation are said to have forgotten worship of the one true God. While it may "seem" reasonable to think that everything around us is part of one God, there is a major difference. God is defined as an eternal being, yet every created thing has both been created and will not last indefinitely. Therefore, created things cannot be God.
Pantheism is also clearly condemned in Scripture, whereas worship to the one true God is often commanded (Deuteronomy 6:4-5). A biblical perspective makes clear that there is one God who created all other things, making Him unique from them and greater than them. As a result, we are called to give glory to God and to recognize Him as the Almighty, Creator God.
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Panentheism – What is it?
Polytheism – What is it?
Truth about Worldview and Apologetics