Ligon Duncan on the Non-Negotiables of the Gospel

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  • Tuesday, October 02, 2007

    "If God Exists, There Would Be Evidence" Argument

    Often the argument is made that "If God exists, there should(/would) be unbelievable (i.e. believable) evidence." Usually, this argument when made, if not proclaimed with an air of authority or provoking sarcasm, is immediately followed with one of the same or both as the maker of the argument asserts that "no such evidence exists."

    While the argument for incredulity has been made repeatedly ...,

    (I was reminded on my walk this morning) isn't it true that as far as man is able to look in the sky, with all our telescopes and sophisticated equipment, that though we detect stars and galaxies far away, in fact far, far, far away, we cannot see the end, nor even come to suspect we will ever find an end...And it all works and fits together with such intricacy and laws and relationships, etc.... and "no such evidence exists."

    When I read about things in the other direction, about the DNA and the components that form it, and our trying to figure out why these things do what they do, and so forth, and then there's the question of what's even smaller and what's at work beyond what we're able to observe and understand today, and the question that's always lying beyond these questions as to why do they do what they do and where do they come from and what causes them to do what they do, and where does it all point back to? Man continues to search, and grow, and understand, and then there's more, and we grow more only to find more, so we continue to search and grow and see, and then there's more and more and more, and then even more... and yet "no evidence exists."

    Certainly, those make a point who suggest that if a God exists who can do all this, then surely he could manifest himself in such a form that we would all yell "eureka, it's true" and all bow down before him. Yet, shouldn't man consider that if this being with such infinite wisdom, power, and authority also possesses infinite holiness, judgment and wrath; then short of his possessing and exerting infinite patience, love and commitment, it would not be to our advantage for him to show his infinite being, justice and rule until such time as his wrath could be appeased and his righteous demands satisfied, even to the end that redemption itself is accomplished, to which revelation which both communicated and interpreted that redemption would prove not only helpful and beneficial but necessary and desirable. It's no small wonder this is exactly the message revealed in the holy Scripture (regardless of what others may proclaim or put their hope in).

    It's not always wise, especially when dealing with the realm of existence or intentions, to assume that "just because one could do something but hasn't" suggests (or proves) that one does not exist, or intends to do so at a later point. Sometimes, as is the case with God, it behooves people to ask a few more questions, before claiming superior intellect and incomparable standing on such a matter.

    It reminds me of the experience of my son yesterday, who after we stopped at a light adjacent to a graveyard and I made the remark "it looks like someone was buried recently" looked in the direction of the graveyard and kept asking "Where", "Where, Dad?", "Where", to which I responded "there under the fresh mound of dirt with the flowers placed on it." If only he had known what he was looking for, he would not have responded as if "no evidence exists."

    4 comments:

    Steve Burri said...

    I often ask atheists to use the same requirements upon their own beliefs that they use upon the Christian's. I sometimes ask if they believe that Abraham Lincoln existed. If they do, how do they know? They have never met, seen, or heard him. They must use the eye-witness of others and writings of historians as well as those purported to be written by Lincoln himself. Why is that good enough for belief in this case, but in reference to Christ, the same deference is not given?

    One atheist, in exasperation, stated, "He's on my penny, that's how I know!" I responded, "My penny also states, "In God We Trust!"" Went downhill from there.

    JD Longmire said...

    LOL!

    swordbearer said...

    Steve,

    I love it!

    Your points are good!

    Be on the look for an upcoming post I'm working on that deals with the definition and requirements of atheists. I'm not sure when I'll finish & post it, but it will expose their errors and the arguments they seek to hide behind.

    Thanks for your comments,
    Tim

    August said...

    What is evidence? And what constitutes evidence? How do we know evidence is true? How do we go from facts to beliefs, or from suspicion to denial?

    Before an atheist can start demanding evidence, he needs to describe what it is, and why his definitions of evidence are the necessarily correct ones.

    Otherwise the debate is dead from the start.