There's No Arguing It: We Can't KNOW If There's a God or Not
John ShoreBesides here on Crosswalk, John blogs on JohnShore.com.
- 2008 Feb 28
As we all know, the answer to the question of whether or not there's a God can generate lots o' debate. (As they did/are in my last two posts, An Atheist Asks: Why Did Christ Have to Sacrifice Himself to Himself? and Inquiring Atheists Want to Know: What, Exactly, Was the Sacrifice Jesus Made?) So I thought I'd say this:
The answer to the question of whether or not there's a God can only be yes or no, right? Either some Divine Intelligence created and sustains our world and us, or Nature Alone exists.
Passions aside, there is no way of knowing -- in any sort of objective, empirically verifiable way -- which of those two is true. Anyone who claims there is a way to positively know whether or not there's a God must be understood to have at some point become irrational. (No offense, fellow Christians, but we must acknowledge that the Bible isn't proof that our God exists. The Bible is an informing affirmation of the God in which we believe. I think we'd all do very well to remember that feeling certain that something is true doesn't make it so.)
Because the chances of God existing or not are even either way, and because none of us can know which of those two choices is the correct one, choosing one must make exactly as much sense as choosing the other. It's a 50-50, binary option. You could be right either way. Same as flipping a coin. Could be heads. Could be tails.
Could be a God. Could be no God. Could be complex and coincidental mechanics; could be intelligent design.
Can we at least agree that it's just as reasonable to choose to think there is a God as it is to choose to think there isn't? Since we can't know, and the chances are the same either way? Please understand that I'm not talking about any particular God, now -- not the specific God of the Christians, Jews, Muslims, or anyone else. I'm only talking about God generally.
Before dealing with the validity of any one God, can we at least agree that choosing to think there's a God is just as rational as choosing to think there's none? Because if we can't all agree on something that basic, and that obviously true, then I think we should be too embarrassed to talk about anything at all.
So can we at least start with that? Wouldn't that be nice? And sane?
Excercise your proclivity for rational thought here.