Monday, May 18, 2009

"Proving" God's Existence and Free Will

> No, I cannot "prove" there is a God...

While I am far from an expert in theological issues, I believe that there are serious theological problems with the existence of a "proof" for God's existence.

**IF** such a "proof" existed it would effectively eliminate our "free choice" option to believe in God.

Consider the sun. There are no sun atheists. That's because we see the sun. We feel the sun. We see the effects of the sun all around us. The existence of the sun has been "proven" as much as the existence of anything can be proven.

But, that means that we don't have really have "free will" to believe in the sun. We are forced to believe in it. That's not to say that anyone is twisting our arm, but because its existence is "proven", as rational human beings we don't have a choice. It isn’t rational not to believe in the existence of the sun.

Of course the existence of the sun doesn't have any particular philosophical or theological import. If there was nothing to warm the Earth we simply wouldn't exist. Other than that it doesn't affect our actions (except when we are reminded to put on sun block).

But the existence or non-existence of God DOES have significant philosophical and theological implications.

**IF** the existence of God could be proven beyond any doubt then there would be no "free will" in regard to believing in him. We would be forced to do so by the implications of the logical argument presented to us. But then Christian theology, which depends on free will, would be deemed largely pointless.

So, it seems to me, that claiming that God's existence can be "proven" is inconsistent with Christianity.

When people claim that they can "prove" God's existence because there is order in the universe or all things need a creator, then they are supporting ideas that are fundamentally anti-Christian. They NEED such a "proof" because their faith is very weak (effectively non-existent) but to actually promote such ideas must be some sort of a sin.

Note that it is quite reasonable to believe in God yourself because of the order in the universe or because you believe that all things need a creator. You can even use the fallacy of Pascal's Wager. But that's not the same thing as claiming that you can "prove" the existence of God because of those things. So in my view, creationists who deny such a proof have exactly the right perspective.

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