In my recent Internet meanderings, I came upon a summary of a book called the God Delusion, by Richard Dawkins. Having no inclination to read the book I do, however, wish to respond to a few summary points that are the premise of the atheists’ point of view.
Argument #1: Who Created the Creator?
For creationists, an intelligent God is the ultimate and simple explanation for everything. But this is where the “simple” theistic position begins to fall apart. If all things can be said to have their root cause in an intelligent God, then one must raise the obvious question—what is the root cause of God? Who designed the designer? You can postulate an infinite regression of the physical universe that terminates with God. But if you cannot explain the existence of God in the first place, the argument collapses.
The atheists’ reasoning is not sound. Scientists basically agree that the universe had a beginning. In that, they are in agreement with the Bible, which opens with the words: “In the beginning.”
It is postulated that in the beginning all of the atomic matter that exists had a single point of origin. That makes sense. Scientists euphemistically call it the Big Bang, referring to the moment when the super-concentrated mass exploded and is still expanding through empty space.
Okay, fine. There was a big bang and now here we are. So, where did the teaspoon of atomic concentrate come from? No one has an answer for that—at least not one that atheists are willing to accept.
Einstein revealed the correlation between matter and energy with his E=MC2 formula, which is the basis for releasing energy from matter, which, conversely, means that energy is the source of matter. The question then is simple. Where did the energy come from? No one knows. And yet atheists accept the reality that the universe exists even though they cannot satisfactorily explain where the energy came from that is at the core of all matter.
The atheists’ argument that God cannot exist because everything has to have a designer collapses.
There is a world that cannot be measured by human senses. It is the realm of energy. And although it is beyond human imagination the unseen realm is actually the real world inhabited by creatures of a higher order. God has actually tried to convey some idea to us of the nature of the real world. One of the Psalms states, simply: “He makes his angels spirits, his ministers a consuming fire.”
In other words, creatures inhabiting the spirit realm are forms of energy, sort of like fire. Fire is a form of energy, a plasma that intimates the existence of a higher plane of existence. And the Author of the Bible who calls himself the Creator long ago informed us that he is abundant in dynamic energy. Logically, the Creator of the universe would have to be the source of the energy that is locked into every swirling atom which are the building blocks of everything.
It is infantile to suppose that God cannot exist because in order for him to exist he would have had to be created too. Jesus referred to his Father as the only true God for the very reason that God has always existed. Just because it is beyond human comprehension that God was not created does not mean it is not true.
Argument #2: The Unreliability of the Bible
The Bible was written and compiled by several different authors, writing centuries after the events they purported to describe. As such, it is riddled with inconsistencies and is not considered a reliable historical account by scholars. For example, the Bible is unclear about whether Jesus was born in Bethlehem or Nazareth. That the Bible is unable to even get the facts straight on where the supposed son of God was born argues strongly against relying upon it as a historical source, and as “proof” of God’s existence.
The Bible was compiled by a few dozen men in three different languages over a period of 1,600 years. The physical scrolls have seemingly miraculously survived down through the ages, through numerous invasions by marauding armies and attempts to destroy the Bible. It has never been proven to be contradictory, only misunderstood. The supposed contradiction over the place of Jesus’ birth is ridiculous. The Bible does not say Jesus was born in Nazareth. It says his family moved there when he was a child.
Whereas, it is true that some accounts were written long after the events related. Obviously, Moses was not on hand when God created Adam and Eve or when Noah constructed the ark. He wrote about those things hundreds of years later by means of divine inspiration. However, let the atheist chew on this fact: some parts of the Bible were written centuries before the events occurred. That is what is known as prophecy.
In regards to the birth of Jesus a Hebrew by the name of Micah who lived about 700 years before Christ was inspired to write down in a scroll that the future ruler of Israel would come from the tiny hamlet of Bethlehem: “And you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, the one too little to be among the thousands of Judah, from you will come out for me the one to be ruler in Israel, whose origin is from ancient times, from the days of long ago.”
The gospel writers confirm that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, but he was not from there. After the Persian astrologers came to Jerusalem looking for the newborn child Herod was alarmed and called the Jewish priests to determine where the Messiah was expected to originate. The gospel of Matthew states: “On gathering together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They said to him: “In Bethlehem of Judea, for this is how it has been written through the prophet…” — Mathew 2:4-5
So, even the Jewish religious establishment accepted that Micah had long before foretold that Christ was to be born in Bethlehem. However, the gospel of Luke reveals that Jesus’ parents were from Nazareth, about 60 miles north. They made the trek down to Bethlehem because the Roman rulers imposed some sort of mandatory registration upon the Jews, which evidently required them to register in the place of their tribal ancestry. Luke explains that Mary and Joesph traveled down from Nazareth to Bethlehem and that is where Mary went into labor and gave birth to Jesus in a cattle stall. Due to Herod’s murderous rage, an angel instructed Joesph to take his family to Egypt for their safety. After the death of Herod Joesph then took his family back to Nazareth in the region of Galilee. That is where Jesus grew up. That is where he began his ministry. That is why the Messiah was called Jesus of Nazareth.
I wonder if the “scholars” are really so ignorant or are they dishonest? Perhaps it is just to sell books?
Argument #3: Natural Selection and the Improbability of God
Natural selection offers a far more logical, testable, and likely explanation for why the world is the way it is. Before Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection, intelligent design seemed to offer a much stronger explanation for the complexity we observe in the natural world. It was impossible to imagine that the variety and intricacy of the universe could have come about by any means other than through the conscious will of a supremely intelligent deity.
Evolution is presented as a fact when in reality there is not a shred of proof that any plant, animal, or any living thing has ever mutated or developed into another kind of species. True science requires a theory to be tested experimentally in order to validate the postulate. Science has never demonstrated that living things evolve. Sure, adaptability is designed into every living thing. If a plant or animal cannot adapt to the environment then they become extinct.
Besides, natural selection does not address the question of how life came about originally. If life spontaneously sprang from a bowl of bubbling, primordial soup, or whatever, why doesn’t the same process happen now? Even within a laboratory setting scientists cannot conjure life from non-living matter. The reason why is explained in the Bible: “O Jehovah, your loyal love reaches to the heavens… With you is the source of life…” (Psalms 36)
The wonders of nature cannot be so easily explained away as casual accidents and mutations. Look at the lowly seed. Life on earth would not exist without plants having the ability to reproduce themselves. Every plant produces a genetic blueprint of itself and encodes the information in seeds. And the seeds have special designs that use various techniques for distributing themselves away from the parent plant.
Most plants have two aspects. There is the above-ground part and there is the root below ground. The seed provides enough food for the seedling to survive until it becomes rooted and unfurls its solar panels to commence photosynthesis in order to create its own food. The seed will only germinate and begin the reproduction of the parent plant when there is sufficient water. Once germination begins it is critical for the plant to send the root down and the stem up. Here is a question for those who would mock the suggestion of intelligent design: How does the seed know which way is up? The germination of the seed would fail if the roots went up and the stem grew down. Again, how does the seed detect which way is up and which way is down? Did seeds figure this out or is it evidence of a masterful Designer?
There is evidence all around that a higher intelligence exists. The Christian writer summed it up well, saying: “What may be known about God is clearly evident among them, for God made it clear to them. For his invisible qualities are clearly seen from the world’s creation onward, because they are perceived by the things made, even his eternal power and Godship, so that they are inexcusable. For although they knew God, they did not glorify him as God nor did they thank him, but they became empty-headed in their reasonings and their senseless hearts became darkened.” — Romans 1:19-21
Atheists are empty-headed in their reasonings. They claim to be wise but are really senseless.
One of the most important teachings of Jesus is one of the most ignored. Jesus plainly taught that a creature called Satan exists. He is not the king of some underground inferno who tortures hapless souls for eternity. According to Christ, the Devil is the ruler of the world. His influence is all-pervasive. Of him, Jesus said he is a liar and murderer. That explains why something as empty-headed and preposterous as evolution is enshrined as the truth. The wicked god of this dark world demands it.
In reality, evolution is a religion. Its adherents believe in a delusion. They have ardent faith in a myth. They are inexcusable.