In nomine patris, et filii, et spiritus sancti. Amen.

WHY I BELIEVE IN GOD

There is no way to prove or disprove the existence of God.  Proof does not exist outside of mathematics.  In philosophy and science, all we have is evidence and logic.  So, when someone makes a claim about truth, it is the job of the educated to evaluate that claim and decide whether or not the claim has any basis in reality.  The default position is skepticism, or, the default position is that the claim is false and the claim should only be accepted when evidence supporting the claim can be demonstrated; therefore the default position is atheism, not theism.  Everyone and EVERYONE should remain an atheist until it can be demonstrated to them either with physical or logical evidence.

No physical evidence for God exists, and for this reason many people remain atheists claiming that because evidence for God does not manifest itself, then god must not exist.  However, no physical evidence manifests itself concerning historical facts, yet we accept them because we have ancient writing and the like.  Evidence for God is only logical evidence, in other words, God is the best explanation of a set of data.  Two sub-groups of evidence exist inside the realm of logical evidence: subjective and objective.  Subjective evidence for God would be like “Born Again” stories or “God came to me in a vision” stories.  Although they may prove it to an individual, a story like that is not likely to convince anyone else.  In this article, I will examine objective evidence, or, evidence not relying on an individual’s personal experiences.  Logical claims that apply to everyone who can think and has the ability to reason.

I believe in God for three reasons:

  1. All stories come from somewhere
  2. Certain acts are self-evidently evil
  3. Something cannot come from nothing

ALL STORIES COME FROM SOMEWHERE

            Anyone who has written a work of fiction knows the above statement to be true.  When dreaming up a story, even the most outrageous and bizarre fantasy tales are based on something in reality.  J.R.R. Tolkien’s dead marshes of The Lord of the Rings, though unlike anything actually on earth, are obviously inspired by his experience of seeing dead soldiers face up in the trenches in World War I.  People perceive the physical world around them, and all imagination is based somewhat upon that physical material world that manifests itself.  Like it has oft been said, all stories come from somewhere.  I believe in God for the same reason I believe that there must have been some sort of great flood as described in the Bible (though not necessarily worldwide): not only because I believe the Bible to be inerrant, but also because virtually every civilization history has ever known has a story of a great flood.  I find it very hard to believe that every single group of people dreamed up a story of the earth being flooded all by their lonesome without any basis in reality.  This same principle applies to the story of God.  Every culture mankind has ever hosted has had a belief in a divine being or beings.  All stories come from somewhere.  I doubt that men living in Mesopotamia would have dreamed up a man in the sky simply by wondering about the manifesting world around them.  No, I find it extremely unlikely that man would have even considered God had God not first considered man.  All stories are based in reality, and God is no exception.  Since every culture since the beginning of human history has had a legend of a divine being, it seems perfectly logical to conclude that the divine being or beings manifested themselves in some way at least once in the saga of man.  All stories come from somewhere.

CERTAIN ACTS ARE SELF-EVIDENTLY EVIL

            Why do humans judge other humans’ actions as either morally good or morally evil?  Why is murder such an atrocity?  Animals do it all the time as a means of regulating the population.  What makes us humans so different?  I ask all atheists out there, “Was Adolf Hitler evil?” If they say, “No” then they are equally as depraved.  If they say, “Yes,” then the next question to ask is, “How do you know.”  Without a moral lawmaker, there is no answer to the second question.  If there were no God to give us a conscience and guilt and the ability to judge an act as either right or wrong, then all moral compassing is pointless hogwash.  Without God, the moral lawmaker, you have no right to judge what Adolf Hitler did as wrong.  You may not agree with what he did, but if there is no moral lawgiver and therefore no moral laws, what Hitler did was simply what he felt like doing.  Without God, murdering six million Jews is neither good nor bad because neither exists.  God, in all his glory, is the only reason why we can put vile criminals to death or judge what is good and what is evil.  Atheists would do well to consider this when they claim that they “try to be the best people we can be.” Without God, who are you to say you are good?

SOMETHING CANNOT COME FROM NOTHING

            “Something cannot come from nothing.”  Well duh!  From scientific research we know that the universe had a beginning, yet no matter how far back scientists go, whether it be to the big bang or to membranes bumping into each other, they cannot seem to explain how something (the perceivable universe with all its physical laws and forces) came from nothing.  If we were to rewind to the beginning of space, time, and matter, there would be a point where something disappeared into nothing.  Absolutely NOTHING!  It is illogical to say that something can come from nothing.  We know from the law of conservation of matter and from the law of conservation of energy that matter and energy cannot create themselves.  There is a set amount of matter in the universe—there always has been and there always will be—and it makes no difference how many chemical reactions you perform, no new matter will ever be created from existing matter.  When two substances combine in a reaction, a new substance is formed, but no new matter.  The same is true for energy.  Energy and matter cannot generate themselves.  Nature cannot be blamed for its existence.  While we in the natural world cannot create anything natural out of anything natural, we can create things “sub-natural” out of natural materials.  In other words, while cannot create matter out of matter, we can create virtual words and computer programs that seems to function as naturally as we do ourselves.  I’m sure the simulated people have stories about a creator on the other side of Binary Street much like we do about God.  Since matter cannot come about of itself, it requires a force that is above nature to put it into existence.  We call this the supernatural.  In order for the natural to come into existence, logic demands that there be a supernatural.  At one time there was nothing—no nature, no matter, no time, no space, no energy—and then there was something.  The best explanation I’ve encountered so far is that a supernatural force set it all into existence.  The natural requires a supernatural, and God fits the bill for the perfect supernatural.

One’s belief or unbelief in God becomes relevant in film criticism when judging the intended message of a film.  To look at film’s through a Christian’s eyes is to discern the projected worldview of the film, not only for faith-based films but for secular or at least not overtly religious pictures as well.  ‘Twould be a sad thing to watch The Lord of the Rings and miss the religious parallels and Catholic symbolism.  Films like Signs and Moby Dick, though both secular, certainly make quite a few allusions to religion.  To watch a film through religious eyes is to open up new worlds of possibilities for analysis.

Deus te benedicas

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2 Responses to In nomine patris, et filii, et spiritus sancti. Amen.

  1. gsuzi says:

    very interesting. I’ll be thinking about this. I may have to have some discussion on this. S.

  2. Jenna Smith says:

    very interesting. you have some very deep thoughts.

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