Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Arguments From Atheists, Part 3

Atheists are determined to disprove the existence of God. They attempt to promote arguments that suggest there is evidence that God does not exist. A reader, in the comment section of one of my articles, supplied me with several of these arguments.  While everyone will not accept all of my reasons, they are offered in the spirit of love with the hope that those who are truly seeking answers will realize that they do exist for these challenges and that believing in God is not unreasonable.

Atheist Argument: The omnipotence paradox suggests that the concept of an omnipotent God is logically contradictory, from considering a question like: “Can God create a rock so big that He cannot move it?” or “If God is all powerful, could God create a being more powerful than Himself?”.
Response: This argument proves that the atheist asking them does not truly want an answer.  These are simply smokescreens meant to muddy up real discussion about God, His character, and His attributes.  J. Warner Wallace writes, “When someone asks, “Can the all-powerful Christian God create a stone so heavy he cannot lift it?” they are asking a logically incoherent question. It is the equivalent of asking, “Can God create a ‘square circle’?” Circles and squares are mutually exclusive by their very definition. As a result, the question nonsensically queries the creation of something similarly nonsensical. God cannot create square circles for the same reason He cannot sin; He acts dependably in a manner consistent with His moral and logical nature, and our universe is the beneficiary of God’s dependable nature. Those who ask logically incoherent questions of this kind are requiring God to violate His nature (His logical coherency) in order to demonstrate His nature (His power)” [1].  Logic is a reflection of God’s unchanging nature; therefore, He will act in a logical manner.  Although God is omnipotent, the Bible does say that there are certain things He cannot do. He cannot sin (James 1:3); He cannot change (Malachi 3:6; James 1:17); He cannot deny Himself (II Timothy 2:13).  Does this mean God is not omnipotent?  No, it simply means that He acts according to His nature. 

Atheist Argument: The Omniscience paradox. “If God is omnipotent, then he should be able to change the future to an “alternate future” that is unknown to him, conflicting with his omniscience” Similarly, an omniscient God would know the position of all atoms in the universe over its ~14 billion-year history as well as its infinite future. To know that, God’s memory needs to be bigger than the infinite set of possible states in the current Universe.
Response: Simply because we cannot comprehend the immense power and ability of God does not mean He does not/cannot exist.  It makes good sense to consider that God, Who is capable of creating the universe, is able to do far more than we are able to wrap our minds around.  The argument about an omniscient (all-knowing) God creating something He does not know is a self-defeating argument; much like “can God create something that is uncreated”, simply an exercise in word play…nothing more.  There are also many unfounded assumptions contained in this argument: the universe has not been proven to be 14 billion years old, yet this argument makes that assumption in an attempt to bolster its case.  One could also contend that humans do not know how big God’s memory needs to be to do anything.  These are meaningless shots in the dark that do not contain facts, only fantasy.

Atheist Argument: The “No Reason” Argument tries to show that an omnipotent and omniscient God would not have any reason to act in any way, specifically by creating the universe, because He would have no needs, wants, or desires since these very concepts are subjectively human. Since the Universe exists, there is a contradiction, and therefore, an omnipotent God cannot exist.
Response: The only reason God has for acting in a certain way is simply because He chooses to act in that way.  It is amazing that we sometimes think we have the right to determine how God should or should not act.  If God cannot act as He chooses, He is not God.  Humanity shows its arrogance when we say that we have decided, by using our fallible reasoning capabilities, that God should have done this or that He shouldn’t have done that.  God asked Job, “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding...” (Job 38:4 NASB).  God is pointing out the fact that He did not ask our opinion when He created the universe and everything in it; therefore, who do we think we are to question Him? 
As to the idea that ‘need, wants or desires’ are ‘subjectively human’; is it reasonable to believe that an all mighty God has no feelings?  The Bible clearly says that God loves us, it speaks of His anger and His wrath against sin and evil doers, He can grieve…are these not feelings?  He certainly would have no needs because He is God, but we know He has desires because the Bible clearly says so, “God, our savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (I Timothy 2:3-4 NASB).  Whereas many of our wants and desires are sinful, God has no wants or desires that are contrary to His holy nature.  But it is not we who decide God’s nature; He created us, not the other way around.

There will come a time when we are all judged by God, are you ready? “...the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes to be glorified...” (II Thessalonians 1:7-10 NASB).