Thoughts on Apologetics: God's Goodness in Creation
Dr. Paul Dean is a pastor, cultural commentator, and author. He serves as a Regional Mentor with the International Association of Biblical Counselors, speaks at several conferences throughout the year, and provides training for ministers and churches on a regular basis. Paul resides in the Upstate of South Carolina with his wife and three children.
- 2008 Feb 13
A host of angles are available to us when it comes to defending the faith both from evidence and philosophical argument from a presuppositional approach. As believers think through the comprehensive nature of the Christian worldview as contrasted with other worldviews, lines of defense suggest themselves that are well worth further investigation and elaboration. At the same time, the mere suggestion is that which spurs us to more thinking on the subject. Consider a line of thought, albeit undeveloped, connected to God’s goodness in creation for a Christian apologetic.
God’s goodness is on display in the fact that He created the universe when He was not required to do so and it was good. Not only was God before all things (Gen. 1:1), and not only did He create the universe out of nothing (1:1), but He also declared that creation to be good (1:31). Among other things, if God created the universe, He Himself is outside of the universe and does not exist in time and space. This fact speaks to His otherness; His eternality; His omnipotence; etc. That this particular God would create is owing to, among other things, the glory of His goodness.
Contrast God’s reality with an evolutionary worldview grounded in naturalism or materialism. That worldview seeks to explain ultimate questions within the framework of a physical universe only. All that exists is that which we can observe. There is nothing beyond the physical. Yet, the evolutionist does not live consistently in accordance with that worldview. There are things that are not physical that he believes in such as laws of logic, certain moral standards, etc. He must appeal to a Christian worldview to hold such things.
For example, on an evolutionary worldview, we came from nothing by accident. That belief then necessitates that we have no real purpose in life, that there is no universal moral standard, and that when we die there is nothing after. Therefore, life is meaningless. Life is not good. Yet, evolutionists try to inject meaning and/or goodness into life. To do so is philosophically impossible on their worldview.
However, on the Christian worldview, God created us. That means we have a purpose: to glorify Him. We have a moral standard: His standard. And, when we die, we will be with Him forever through Christ. That makes it possible for us to experience the goodness of God. Moreover, our worldview makes philosophical sense. It has no inherent contradictions as the evolutionary worldview does.
Further, God created the universe out of “nothing.” There was no dust, no light, no darkness, no space, no time, etc. That is not a philosophical problem for us because God exists outside of all those things. Yet, the evolutionist says that the universe came to be out of nothing by virtue of a big bang. If there was “nothing,” not even space, where did that big bang come from? Since the evolutionist says there is nothing outside of the physical universe, his theory falls to the ground. Not only that, scientifically, something cannot come from nothing. We Christians truly have the answers that explain our existence and that too is good (and flows from God’s goodness toward us).
If a given worldview cannot give coherent answers to ultimate questions, then how can anything truly be said to be good on that worldview? If we do not really know where we come from, why we are here, how to live now that we are here, and what happens when we die, that is not good nor is life itself good. Again, God’s goodness in creation is one of the dynamics that makes life good in any sense and that’s why the Christian worldview is the only worldview that makes sense of our experience. And that’s good.
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