Now that we have the preliminaries out of the way, let’s jump right into it. There are several lines of reasoning that, to me, offer compelling evidence to believe in the God of the Bible, in Jesus of Nazareth, and the veracity of the Old and New Testament historical accounts.
Belief in a Creator God
This issue is the easiest to address in my mind. There are several philosophical arguments that one can use to come to the conclusion that it is more reasonable to believe in a creator God than it is to hold there is no such being. First, in my mind, is the fact that there is anything at all. When we look at the “stuff” around us we realize that everything we see is temporal (finitely existing in time) and that it had a cause. If we trace the causation of each thing back, we realize that the cause had a cause, and etc. At this point we can infer one of two things: either there is an unbroken and infinite causal chain, going back into eternity past, or, more parsimoniously and probably, at some point in the finite past, there was a first cause.
Science actually confirms, as nearly as possible, that there is indeed a first cause. Here’s how: back in the early twentieth century, a man named Edwin Hubble discovered that our universe is undergoing constant expansion. Everything in the observable universe is actually moving farther apart from everything else. This was a huge surprise for scientists at the time, because if you simply “rewind the tape” you inevitably come to the conclusion that there had to be an absolute beginning. Many scientists of that day (and this day as well) did not like that implication and there have been several theories proposed to try to “rescue” the universe from an absolute beginning, but to this day all of the evidence we have from science (via observation and testable and repeatable experimentation) is that the universe did indeed have an absolute beginning.
In my article on the subject I walked through the reasons why positing God as the “Big Banger” is the most reasonable inference for the beginning of the universe. The most compelling and easily understood philosophical argument, in my mind, is what is commonly referred to as the Kalaam Cosmological Argument. It posits two premises followed by the conclusion that most naturally follows. Here it is in its simplest form:
Kalaam Cosmological Argument
1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause.
2. The universe began to exist.
3. God is the most reasonable explanation for the existence of the universe.
In my article entitled “Why is there SOMEthing and not NOthing?” I explain the reasoning behind the first two premises, and flesh out the conclusion.
There are similar arguments that trade on the need for a contingent being, and they follow through as well, but they are also more nuanced than the Kalaam. Perhaps down the road we can look at those types of arguments more closely. However, the Kalaam Cosmological Argument serves to show that belief in a creator God is indeed the most reasonable conclusion, given the evidence from science and observation that is available to us today.
I’d love to discuss these things with you. Any questions and comments that are in line with this page’s Commenting Policy will be published and responded to (to the best of my ability). For more information on how I keep my worldview informed please go to Cross Roads Church.