Ligon Duncan on the Non-Negotiables of the Gospel

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  • Friday, April 27, 2007

    Miracles and Non Theist Skeptics

    Ever thought about how ridiculous and unreasonable non theist skeptics are when they seek to disprove God on the basis or denial of miracles?

    Some state that science disproves miracles. Other non theists, seek to disprove God by attempting to limit or define by dichotomy the difference between what occurs according to the normal laws and principles we see at work in the universe with God's ability to will and/or to act apart from those laws. Others prove more circular suggesting miracles don't exist because God doesn't exist.

    Has it ever occured to these folks that...

    1. God, who is above the laws and principles which he established and put in place for the good and regular government and use of mankind, is free not only to act in keeping with those laws but to act above or apart from those laws (and along with those laws).

    For example, while the normal laws provide such that a rotation is experienced between the planets and sun, that nothing stops God from stopping this rotation anytime he chooses. I know some have scientifically tried to argue all the physical effects that would necessarily occur if the rotation stopped even for a brief period of time, but is it not reasonable that if one were wise and powerful and sovereign enough to stop the rotation of the planets at will, that he also could not prevent or zero out these other effects at will.

    The point being that God is not limited to the dichotomy of either acting within the laws of the universe or acting apart from them, God is free and does act in both manners, both being normal and not extraordinary (on one level) to Him.

    2. Even those things that occur in keeping with the normal laws and principles of the universe are extraordinary on one level. Is it not amazing that a person can throw a ball up and have that ball return to them, for while gravity has received a name and appears normal to us, what is it that ultimately causes gravity to work the way it does? Does eternal mass provide satisfactory answers for this? The point being this: While non theists seek to set the miraculous apart from the normal laws and principles, even the normal laws and principles operate on the basis of the miraculous and extraordinary.

    3. Something lies behind the sustenance and operation of the things we experience in the physical realm.

    For example, while science might explain that a wind blew against a particular sail because of an approaching storm, one must ask why was the storm approaching, and why is that, and why is that, etc.? Are we to suppose that the universe itself is the ultimate watchmaker? Or, doesn't it appear to me more reasonable that a purposeful, intelligent, sovereign creator and being not only created and began things in motion, but remains involved in all things, whether they appear "normal or not"?

    4. While science can provide physical explanations for many that take place, can non theists distinguish and/or disprove the existence and participation of the metaphysical behind them?

    Seekers, don't fall for the rhetoric often found among non theist apologists. As the writer of Proverbs states "The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him."

    1 comment:

    jdlongmire said...

    Excellent point, Tim - I often point out that God is the Ultimate Programmer - that is - we don't think a thing of the fantastic ideas and images we are exposed to through the magic of Computer Generated images these days in movies, television or on-line - so why try to tie down God to natural laws when He creates the environment?