Has Science Proved
There is no God?
Some people say, ?Science has proved that God does not exist.? I ask them, ?What scientist using what scientific experiment proved that God does not exist?? Of course, they can?t tell me because there isn?t one. We simply can?t devise an experiment or a measuring instrument to observe God or see that there is no God out there. I have a deep respect for the scientific process and an awe over what has been discovered and accomplished. However, the above assertion is laughable, in that the way science "progresses" is by replacing one theory for a new one. Pick up any science oriented publication from popular to academic and notice how often the authors say something like, "this new finding disproves/challenges/stands on its head/etc our previous theory that..." With this in mind, why should we trust any scientific statement about God?
Unfortunately, most people and even many scientists incorrectly assume that science is able to prove things with 100% certainty. But that is not the case. Thomas Kuhn wrote a book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions which has become required reading for many science students in their doctoral programs. He wrote,
Few philosophers of science still seek absolute criteria for the verification of scientific theories. Noting that no theory can ever be exposed to all possible relevant tests, they ask not whether a theory has been verified but rather about its probability in the light of the evidence that actually exists.
Since scientists are not able to have 100% certainty they must accept their conclusions by faith. We hope that they have good reasons to believe their conclusions but ultimately it is an act of faith. In a similar way, it is not possible to use science to prove or disprove God’s existence. We can only use it to gather evidence and ask, “Is it more reasonable to believe that God exists or that God doesn’t exist?”
We don’t need to be intimidated by people’s claims that science has proved God doesn’t exist because we understand that science can neither prove or disprove the existence of God, only how reasonable it is to believe. The rest of this article will introduce various scientific and non-scientific evidences for God's existence.
The Design Argument states that the universe exhibits obvious qualities of intelligent design; therefore there must be an Intelligent Designer.
A Christian astrophysicist, Hugh Ross writes in The Creator and the Cosmos , “imagine the possibility of a Boeing 747 aircraft being completely assembled as a result of a tornado striking a junkyard.” He uses this to illustrate how “the building blocks necessary for life to come into existence and the possibility of that happening without someone or some thing designing them stretches the imagination beyond the breaking point.”
Ross illustrates this further with the various physical parameters that characterize the universe and how they have to be exactly the way they are in order for atoms, planets, stars, galaxies and life itself to exist. For example, if the forces that hold an atom?s nucleus together, the force of gravity and the electromagnetic force were slightly different the heavier elements necessary for life could not exist. If the ratio of the mass of an electron to the mass of a proton was either larger or smaller then chemical bonding could not occur. If the polarity of the water molecule was larger or smaller life would not be possible.
In 1993, Dr. Ross listed a total of 26 of these physical constants. Since then, he has accumulated hundreds. If any one of them was a little smaller or larger life could not exist.
This is all so truly amazing that the only reasonable explanation is that the universe has an intelligent designer. So how have the scientists responded to all this. A large number have turned from atheism to believing there is an intelligent designer. Not all have concluded that designer is the God of the Bible, but they?ve taken a big step nevertheless. Physicist Paul Davies used to promote atheism. Now he concedes that ?the laws of [physics] ? seem themselves to be the product of exceedingly ingenious design.? He further testifies:
[There] is for me powerful evidence that there is something going on behind it all….It seems as though somebody has fine-tuned nature’s numbers to make the Universe….The impression of design is overwhelming.
I have read many similar statements from other scientists. There are several books on the subject I can point you to.
In another chapter Dr. Ross, lists 33 parameters involving planets stars and galaxies. If these parameters were any different than what they are life would not be possible. We have just the right galaxy, the right kind of star, the right kind of solar system, the right kind of planet and even the right kind of moon to support life on earth. It is amazing how dependent we are on the whole universe being the way it is in order to have life on even one planet. He concludes:
Thus, with considerable security, we can draw the conclusion that much fewer than a trillionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a percent of all stars could possibly possess, without divine intervention, a planet capable of sustaining advanced life. Considering that the observable universe contains less than a trillion galaxies, each averaging a hundred-billion stars, we can see that not even one planet would be expected, by natural processes alone, to possess the necessary conditions to sustain life. Astronomers are discovering planets orbiting distant stars, but so far, none are the type that would be able to sustain life as we know it.
And finally, Dr. Ross concludes that God went to an awful lot of trouble to create an ideal environment for man. In other words, to do things the way God did it required that He make an entire universe in order to produce one planet that would support human life. A bumper sticker I saw recently sums it up well: ?Good planets are hard to find.? Are we important or what? Is what God is doing through the human race important? More than we can imagine!
When I think about how God made the whole universe just so we could exist I can’t help but praise God like King David in Psalm 19:1 when he sang,
The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
He also wrote in Psalm 8:1-5:
Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
. . .
When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
the son of man that you care for him?
You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.
To summarize, we've seen how scientific evidence through the Design Argument makes belief in God’s existence very reasonable.
For now I will be much more brief on the rest of the arguments for God’s existence. I'll add to these in the future.
Does all this result in an absolutely certain proof of God? No. But does that mean that we don?t have any right to believe in God until someone comes along with absolute proof? No. In the end, it requires faith that God?s exists or doesn?t exist. And that?s OK.
Hebrews 11:6 says,
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
But is this faith a giant ?leap of faith? as some say? Well, let?s look at that analogy so we can learn about what faith involves. Let?s say you want to cross a fast flowing stream but are not sure if you can jump that far. Let?s also say that someone is building a bridge across the stream, but it is not complete. However, even though it is not complete you would only have to take a small step off the unfinished end of the bridge onto the other shore. Would you rather cross the bridge and take a small step to the other shore or risk falling into the rushing water by trying to jump the whole way across?
What is the difference in the faith required to try to jump across and the faith required to walk across the bridge and take a small step to the other shore? The faith required to jump across is a foolish faith based on little support and a lot of uncertainty. It will be based on only a feeling of courage and impulsive risk taking. But there are more uncertainties. You might slip as you plant your foot to jump. You might catch your foot on a stump and trip. You might misjudge the distance and so on. But the faith required to walk across the bridge and take a small step is a wise faith that is based on solid evidence that the bridge, not your feelings, is worthy of your trust. You can examine the bridge to see how well it is built. You can test the strength of the part of the bridge that is finished. The last step doesn?t take as many calculations and effort. So crossing the stream using the bridge has fewer uncertainties. It is not a leap of faith, rather, only a small step.
This shows us that it does not matter how much faith you have but what your faith is based on. You can have great faith that you can jump off a building and not fall to the ground. You can psych yourself up to have a feeling of power and control over your destiny, but the feeling is not going to hold you up once your feet leave the roof. By contrast, you can instead entrust yourself to a parachute that has been tested over and over. You are still taking a chance it won?t open this time, but you know it is a very very very small risk. So now your faith is based on facts. It is based on the trustworthiness of the parachute, which is the object of your faith.
Now, back to faith in God’s existence. If you examine all the evidence for God’s existence it is like having a strong bridge that almost closes the gap and for that reason it is not difficult or risky to believe. The evidence is solid and has proven itself to be worthy of your trust. And as you get to know God more personally and intimately you will then see that His character is worthy of our fullest trust.
Now, we can reply to the skeptic by saying, ?You can?t prove with absolute certainty that God does exist and neither can you prove with absolute certainty that He doesn?t exist. But given the facts and the logical arguments, what is the most reasonable choice? We are most certainly entitled to believe in God. By contrast, the atheist who believes there is no God and the agnostic who is not sure if there is a God must take a leap of faith to deny that all the evidence is best explained by the existence of God.?
For other logocial arguments for God's existence read the article "Does God Even Exist?"
Dembski, William A. Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press. 1999.
Jastrow, Robert. God and the Astronomers. New York: W.W. Norton and Company. 1978.
Kuhn, Thomas. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. 3 ed. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. 1996.
Moreland, J. P. Christianity and the Nature of Science. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House. 1989.
Moreland, J. P. Scaling the Secular City. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.
Moreland, J. P. and Kai Nielsen. Does God Exist?: The Great Debate. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers. 1990.
Ross, Hugh. The Creator and the Cosmos: How the Greatest Discoveries of the Century Reveal God. Colorado Springs: NavPress. 1993.
Ross, Hugh. The Fingerprint of God. Orange: Promise Publishing Co. 1989.
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