I was corresponding with an unbeliever the other day and he said, “…until I see something that proves there is a higher power beyond a shadow of a doubt, I can’t believe in a God.”
I replied to him that “beyond a shadow of a doubt” is not a standard you apply to a lot of things you believe to be true. Most things we believe, we believe based on the preponderance of the evidence. We are inherently limited in our capacity to know with absolute assurance (beyond a shadow of a doubt) much of anything.
Epistemology is a long philosophical discussion. The point is, it is entirely reasonable to believe what has the greatest likelihood of being true based on the preponderance of the evidence. That is how all of life is lived by the rational person.
I offered him the following arguments for the existence of God:
1. Creation. This fantastically designed creation had a Designer. It did not and could not have happened by blind chance, as evolution asserts. Science (which Christians are huge supporters of) has never proved that blind chance has produced anything with life. The irreducible complexity of even a single cell that can reproduce requires that it had to come into existence all at once: no natural process could have produced it out of non-living matter.
2. Conscience. God has placed in every man the knowledge of Himself and of His moral code. That is why the vast, vast majority of humanity always has and always will acknowledge and worship a God of some kind. Men the world over from the most primitive to the most educated are religious; they all acknowledge a universal moral code at a basic level and the existence of a God who will hold them accountable to that code. God built the knowledge of Himself in us, and no amount of philosophical reasoning can shake it out of us.
3. Christ. God has revealed Himself to us in the person of Jesus Christ. The way we know there is a God, is that He has come and visited us and walked among us for 33 years. He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, was crucified, died, and was buried. He rose again from the grave after three days, and forty days later He ascended into heaven. Jesus was God in human flesh. His birth, His perfect life, His teachings, His miracles, and His resurrection cannot be explained any other way than by concluding He is God. No mere human could have led His life.
4. Communication. God has communicated with us through the Bible. This book is the revelation of God. For 40 different human authors to write 66 different books over a period of 1500 years; and yet to have a unified non-contradictory revelation that has consistency in its design, its doctrine, and its central theme of redemption through God’s promised and revealed Son is the indication that a single divine author and mind was inspiring it and bringing it all together. The perfectly fulfilled prophecies in the Bible that came true 100% of the time in all their details shows that an omniscient mind was revealing the future before those future events ever occurred.
5. Conversion. The proof of the existence of God is in the radical transformation He worked in my life and in the lives of millions of others when we were born again, placed our faith in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins, and were transformed into new people who now have a personal relationship with God. God exists because He changed my life radically, decisively, and comprehensively when I was born again; and He has done the same for millions of others.
The first 4 proofs are objective and the last is subjective. All of them added together form a solid basis for concluding there is a God; and therefore makes invalid the charge that we are believing in something with no evidence. We have a large body of evidence for what we believe which far outweighs any arguments that deny the existence of God.
I hope these five C’s will be easy for you to remember when confronted with the question: How do you know there is a God? We will never argue anybody into the kingdom of God, but we should be able to provide every man a reason for the hope that is in us.
Pastor Max Doner
Sovereign Grace Bible Church