Presence of a God

This essay has a total of 6085 words and 19 pages.


Presence of a God





Proof Of The Exsistence of God

Either God exists or He doesn't. There is no middle ground. Any attempt to remain neutral
in relation to God's existence is automatically synonymous with unbelief. It is far from a
"moot" question, for if God does exist, then nothing else really matters; if He does not
exist, then nothing really matters at all. If He does exist, then there is an eternal
heaven to be gained (Hebrews 11:16) and an eternal Hell to be avoided (Revelation 21:8).
The question for God's existence is an extremely important one. One might wonder why it is
necessary to present evidence for the existence of God. As Edward Thomson so beautifully
stated it: "...the doctrine of the one living and true God, Creator, Preserver, and
Benefactor of the universe, as it solves so many problems, resolves so many doubts,
banishes so many fears, inspires so many hopes, gives such sublimity to all things, and
such spring to all noble powers, we might presume would, as soon as it was announced, be
received by every healthy mind." Some, however, contrary to their higher interests, have
refused to have God in their knowledge and thus have become vain in their reasonings and
foolish in their philosophy (Romans 1:21,22,28). They do not see the folly (Psalm 14:1) of
saying there is no God. The Christian has not only the obligation to "give answer to every
man that asketh you a reason concerning the hope that is in you..." (I Peter 3:15), but an
obligation to carry the Gospel message to a lost and dying world (Mark 16:15-16, et al.).
There will be times when carrying the Gospel message to the world will entail setting
forth the case for the existence of God. In addition, we need to remember that Christians
are not agnostics. The agnostic is the person who says that God's existence is unknowable.
As difficult as it is to believe, some Christians take that same stance in regard to God's
existence. They assert that they "believe" there is a God, but that they cannot know it.
They state that God's existence cannot be proved. 'This is false!' God's existence is both
'knowable' and 'provable.' Acceptance of God's existence is not some "blind leap into the
dark" as so many have erroneously asserted. The Christian's faith is not a purely
emotional, subjective "leap," but instead is a 'firm conviction' regarding facts based
upon reasonable evidence. God's existence can be proved to any fair-minded person.
Granted, we do not mean by the word "proved" that God's existence can be scientifically
demonstrated to human senses as one might, for example, prove that a sack of potatoes
weighs ten pounds. But we need to be reminded (especially in our day of scientific
intimidation) that empirical evidence (that based solely upon experiment and/or
observation) is not the only basis for establishing a provable case. Legal authorities
recognize the validity of a 'prima facie' case. Such a case exists when adequate evidence
is available to establish the presumption of a fact which, unless such can be refuted,
'legally stands as a fact'. Inferential proof (the culmination of many lines of evidence
into only one possible conclusion) is an invaluable part of a 'prima facie' case which
simply cannot be refuted. But an important question which serves as a "preface" to the
case for God's existence is this: "From whence has come the idea of God in man's mind?"
The inclination to be religious is universally and peculiarly a human trait. As one writer
observed, even today the evidence indicates that "no race or tribe of men, however
degraded and apparently atheistic, lacks that spark of religious capacity which may be
fanned and fed into a mighty flame." If, therefore, man is incurably religious--and has
the idea of God in his mind--and if we assume that the world is rational, it is impossible
that a phenomenon so universal as religion could be founded upon illusion. The question is
highly appropriate therefore: what is the source of this religious tendency within man?
Alexander Campbell, in his celebrated debate April 13-23, 1829 in Cincinnati, Ohio with
Robert Owen, provided the answer to this question in a very positive fashion. He asked
Owen from whence the idea of God had come in man's mind. Owen (and all skeptics) had
(have) stated that the idea of God has not come from reason (skeptics hold, of course,
that the concept is unreasonable), and that it has not come from revelation. Campbell
pressed Owen to tell him from whence the idea of God 'had' come. Owen retorted, "by
imagination." Campbell then quoted both John Locke and David Hume, two philosophers who
are highly respected in the secular community. Hume stated that the "creative power of the
mind amounts to nothing more than the faculty of combining, transposing, augmenting and
diminishing the materials afforded to us by sense and experience." The imagination, it
turns out, has 'no creative power'. Neither reason nor imagination create. Reason, like a
carpenter's yardstick, is a measure, not an originator. Imagination works only on those
items already in the mind; it does not "create" anything new. [Sigmund Freud, German
psychoanalyst of the first part of the 20th century, attempted to explain God's existence
by stating that man had indeed formed the "heavenly father" from the idea in his mind of
his "earthly father." But this idea will not suffice either. Is the God of the Bible the
God man would "invent" if asked to do so? Hardly. Look around at the "god" man invents
when left to his own devices--the "god" of hedonism, epicurianism, subjectivism, or the
"god" of "if it feels good, do it." The God of the Bible is not the God man would invent,
if left to his own devices. Freud's attempt to explain the idea of God in man's mind
failed miserably.] Campbell pointed out to Owen, in a very forceful way, that the idea of
God in man's mind could only have come through revelation. There is no other choice. The
concept of God, therefore, though greatly perverted in heathen hands, is ultimately
traceable to an original communication between the Creator and the creature. There is no
other alternative, all the disclaimers of the atheist notwithstanding. But suppose the
unbeliever objects: "If the idea of God is basic to human nature, we would not be able to
deny it; we do deny it, however; therefore it is not intuitive." It is sufficient to
observe in rebuttal to such a claim that man, under the enchantment of a deceptive
philosophy, can deny the most obvious of things. Those deluded, for example, by "Christian
Science" religion deny the existence of matter and death. Some today deny that the earth
is spherical or that man has ever been to the moon. But a denial of facts does not
automatically negate the facts. Man's attitude toward Truth does not change Truth. Can
God's existence be proven? Can we 'know' God exists? The answer is a resounding "YES!" The
psalmist said, "Be still and 'know' that I am God" (Psalm 46:10) as he echoed the
Creator's sentiments to man. The allusions to th e manifestations of Deity in the created
world are profuse. David exclaimed, "O Jehovah, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all
the earth, Who has set thy glory upon the heavens?" (Psalm 8:1). In the same psalm, the
inspired writer was constrained to say that the heavens are "the work of thy fingers" and
the moon and stars "thou hast ordained" (Psalm 8:3). Later David was to utter the
beautiful words of Psalm 19:1--"The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament
showeth his handiwork." Isaiah graphically portrayed the majesty and power of nature's God
when he wrote that God "hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out
heaven with a span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the
mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance" (40:12). Dr. E.A. Maness once remarked,
"If the word God were written upon every blowing leaf, embossed on every passing cloud,
engraved on every granite rock, the inductive evidence of God in the world would be no
stronger than it is." John C. Monsma, in the text which he edited entitled, 'The Evidence
of God in an Expanding Universe' (which is a compilation of testimony from forty
outstanding American scientists), affirmed "that science can establish, by the observed
facts of Nature and intellectual argumentation, that a super-human power exists." . Dr. A.
Cressy Morrison, former President of the New York Academy of Sciences, affirmed that "so
many essential conditions are necessary for life to exist on our earth that it is
mathematically impossible that all of them could exist in proper relationship by chance on
any one earth at one time." Dr. Arthur H. Compton, Professor of Physics at the University
of Chicago and Nobel laureate, wrote: "It is not difficult for me to have this faith, for
it is incontrovertible that where there is a plan there is intelligence--an orderly,
unfolding universe testifies to the truth of the most majestic statement ever uttered--'In
the beginning, God.'" . Louis Agassiz, M.D., Ph.D., Harvard University (and a life-long
opponent of Darwinian evolution), made these remarks:.. "Though I know those who hold it
to be very unscientific to believe that thinking is not something inherent in matter, and
that there is an essential difference between inorganic and living and thinking beings, I
shall not be prevent ed by any such pretentions of a false philosophy from expressing my
conviction that as long as it cannot be shown that matter or physical forces do actually
reason, I shall consider any manifestation of physical thought as an evidence of the
existence of a thinking being as the author of such thought, and shall look upon
intelligent and intelligible connection between the facts of nature as direct proof of a
thinking God....' All these facts in their natural connection proclaim aloud the one God
whom man may know, adore, and love, and natural history must in good time become the
analysis of the thoughts of the Creator of the universe' as manifested in the animal and
vegetable kingdoms." Lord Kelvin, the famed English thermodynamicist once said, "I cannot
admit that, with regard to the origin of life, science neither affirms nor denies Creative
Power. 'Science positively affirms Creative Power'. It is not in dead matter that we live
and move and have our being, but in the creating and directing Power which science compels
us to accept as an article of belief.... There is nothing between absolute scientific
belief in a Creative Power, and the acceptance of the theory of a fortuitous concourse of
atoms.... Forty years ago I asked Liebig [famed chemist Justus von Liebig--BT], walking
some-where in the country, if he believed that the grass and flowers that we saw around us
grew by mere chemical forces. He answered, 'No, no more than I could believe that a book
of botany describing them could grow by mere chemical forces'.... Do not be afraid of
being free thinkers! 'If you think strongly enough you will be forced by science to the
belief in God', which is the foundation all religion. 'You will find science not
antagonistic but helpful to religion.'" . One cannot help but wonder what has caused many
of the most prominent and brilliant minds of both days gone by and of our day to make such
statements. No doubt, at least a partial explanation lies in the fact that they saw a few,
or many, of the thousands of "signposts" or "ensigns" scattered throughout the natural
world which point clearly to the unseen Designer of nature. These "signposts" are
multitudinous in our world, and plainly obvious to those whose minds have not been blinded
by the "god of this world" (II Corinthians 4:4), "refusing to have God in their knowledge"
(Romans 1:28). An examination of these "ensigns" makes for a profitable and edifying
study. NATURE'S HOME: THE UNIVERSE When the writer of Hebrews stated that, "...every house
is builded by someone..." (Hebrews 3:4), he suggested the well-known principle of cause
and effect. Today the Law of Causality is the fundamental law of science. Every effect
must have an adequate cause. Further indicated is the fact that no effect can be
qualitatively superior to or quantitatively greater than the cause. The universe is here,
and is a tremendous effect. Hence, it must be explained in terms of an adequate cause.
There are four possible explanations for the universe. (1) It is but an illusion, and does
not really exist. This is hardly worthy of consideration. (2) It spontaneously arose out
of nothing. This view is absurd, and cannot be entertained scientifically. Dr. George E.
Davis, prominent physicist, has declared:"No material thing can create itself." . (3) It
has always existed. This theory, though held by many atheistic scientists of our day, is
scientifically untenable. Many evidences (e.g., the Second Law of Thermodynamics) reveal
that the stars are burning up, the sun is cooling off, the earth is wearing out, etc. Such
facts indicate that the universe had a beginning; otherwise it would long ago have already
reached a state of deadness. Dr. Robert Jastrow, of NASA, states in his book, 'God and the
Astronomers : "I am fascinated by some strange developments going on in astronomy.... The
essence of the strange developments is that the Universe had, in some sense, a
beginning--that it began at a certain moment in time.... And concurrently there was a
great deal of discussion about the fact that the second law of thermodynamics, applied to
the Cosmos, indicates that the Universe is running down like a clock. If it is running
down, there must have been a time when it was fully wound up....The astronomer comes to a
time when the Universe contained nothing but hydrogen--no carbon, no oxygen, and none of
the other elements out of which planets and life are made. This point in time must have
marked the beginning of the Universe." (4) It was created. This is the only remaining
alternative and the only reasonable view of the origin of the universe. Since our finite,
dependent (and contingent) universe (of matter/energy) did not cause itself, it was
obviously caused by an infinite, independent, eternal Mind. God, speaking through Moses
(Genesis 15:5) and Jeremiah (33:32), mentioned that "the host of heaven cannot be
numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured ...." Little did we know how true those
statements were. Johann Bayer (1603) devised a system to indicate the brightness, or
magnitude, of the stars, using the Greek and Roman alphabets to denote their brightness.
[Remember Paul's statement to the Corinthians (I Corinthians 15:41): "...for one star
differeth from another star in glory."] Men before and after Bayer tried to count the
stars. Hipparchus the astronomer, in 128 B.C. counted the stars and said there were 1,026.
In 150 A.D., the famous astronomer Ptolemy counted the stars and arrived at the number of
1,056. Years later, in 1575 A.D., the renowned Danish astronomer, Tyco Brah, counted the
stars and said there were 777. In 1600 A.D. the German astronomer Johannes Kepler counted
the stars and gave the number 1,005. At last counting (and we are nowhere near finished
yet) the number of stars stood at '25 sextillion'. That's a 25 with twenty-one zeroes
after it! There are an estimated one billion galaxies,. and most of them contain billions
of stars (the Milky Way galaxy in which we live, for example, contains over '100 billion
stars'). It is so large that travelling at the speed of light (186,317.6 miles per second)
it would take you 100,000 years to go across just the diameter of the galaxy. Light
travels in one year approximately 5.87 x 1O.MDSU/12' miles. In 100,000 years, that would
be 5.87 x 1O.MDSU/17' miles, or 587 quadrillion miles. Our nearest neighboring galaxy is
the Andromeda galaxy, which is an estimated 2,000,000 light years away. That's so far that
a radio wave which goes around the earth approximately 8.2 times in one second would
require over 1 million years to get there, and a return message would take another 1
million years. The observable universe has an estimated diameter of 20 billion light
years. But it isn't simply the size of the universe that is so marvelous. The size is
important, of course, but so is the 'design'. The earth, for example, in orbiting the sun,
departs from a straight line by only one-ninth of an inch every 18 miles--a very straight
line in human terms. If the orbit changed by one-tenth of an inch every 18 miles, our
orbit would be vastly larger and we would all freeze to death. If it changed by one-eighth
of an inch, we would come so close to the sun w e would all be incinerated.. Are we to
believe that such precision "just happened by accident"? The sun is burning at
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