I believe life itself is a test; that our free will acting within a cause-and-effect reality creates a self-perpetuating system that does not need any sort of intervention or maintenance from higher deity. God’s intervention was no longer necessary after he created the Laws of Nature to facilitate the existence of his creation as they act in his place.
To expound on my belief that life is a test, I don’t mean it’s a test to achieve some kind of reward in the end; but rather, a test to see what possible outcomes could happen in this universe. In other words, I think God is running some sort of test simulation in which we are all part; each of us being a point of consciousness to gather information during our entire lives via our personal experiences. I believe that we are all like cameramen recording our lives onto an external, metaphysical hard-drive where all experience is uploaded to the Mind of God. In order for this experiment to serve its purpose, God cannot intervene, lest he’d alter the results and change the experiences of the subjects (us) which negates the entire purpose of the experiment.
However, many believers reject the idea that we are on our own and actually believe that God does intervene in our personal lives, but the Deist understands that with free will comes great responsibility; fully accepting the events in his life, both the good and the bad. We believe that God will not comfort us in our journey and it is up to us to persevere; whereas, other theists reject this idea because it seems they do not want to be responsible for their actions nor to face their challenges alone.
Naturally, it is more comforting to believe that God will take care of everything; that he has some sort of plan for each of us, and is looking after us, but one must truly turn a blind eye to reality when it is clear that the evils and horrors of the world strongly suggests otherwise. Regardless, these theists will still kneel down and pray, hoping that God will manipulate the test to favor them – to help them cheat on it in a sense – and make it easier.
Frankly, I find this sort of importuning disgraceful and illogical, for if God did have a plan, why would he alter it in their favor? If free will exists there can be no plan. And if there is a plan, it would have to include all the evils of the world as well, which he allows to happen.
These theists who cannot accept that God would allow evil to happen, had to also create a scapegoat, namely the Devil, who is responsible for all the evil things; including their temptations and misfortunes. These people had to create the Devil in order to account for hardest question any theists is faced with: Why is there evil in the world? If God has a master plan, evil must be part of it as well, and this is not congruent with a omnipotent, benevolent god. Thus, the Devil steps in to exonerate God, and comforts these theists as he is the reason for all evil in their lives and others.
Again, the Deist rejects this nonsense and realizes that our actions are the results of our will; no one else’s. In this finite, cause-and-effect universe, we know that everything must come to an end and that destruction, decay, pain and death are inexorably weaved into its fabric in order to facilitate change and maintain its cyclical nature. Furthermore, in order for our reality to even be a duality, evil must exist by necessity, otherwise how could we even know what is good or not? Thus, just knowing the nature of our reality and accepting that it just simply is what it is, removes the need for any master plan or demonic entity reeking havoc on mankind.
To conclude my thoughts, if you believe in free will, then you believe like I do that we are on our own and it is up to make our world a better place without the assistance of God. Thus, the greatest gift of freedom is also our greatest responsibility. Though many may see this as a burden, I believe it is a truly wonderful thing; for this means that we are the ones who can take charge and make the world how we see fit; we can become co-creators like our father, who gave us the ability to do so when he gave us our reason.