God in the Petri Dish


The challenge was issued:

“Sirius, please show us some physical evidence for your imaginary deity.

Until you do that, you are a liar.”

This brought to mind a similar conversation I’ve been having that was instigated by a post by Brooks Robinson on the obviousness of God.

Let’s face it. There are always guys who swear they’d change their mind if God was standing right in front of them or if He would submit himself to scientific verification. Who are they trying to fool? They don’t examine the evidence of His Incarnation and Resurrection [Luke 16:31]; why should we believe they’d change their minds if they had God in the petri dish?

Of course, they’re never going to find God in a petri dish [though He was found in a manger once!]

My remarks to to another blogger on this subject are pertinent:

The Christian position on God’s obviousness is typically based on Romans 1:18-25 and to a lesser extent on Psalm 19:1-6 and Acts 17:27. The general assertion that the evidence for God is there.

Here I must note that by God’s “obviousness,” the Christian cannot mean His utter undeniability. We may deny Him. We may ignore Him. Why? Because we must approach Him by faith. Hebrews 11:6 states “And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.”

It is a valid qustion to ask why this should be. Why should there be, as Pascal lamented, too much evidence to ignore but too little to be sure?

The answer lies in the concept of free will, specifically free will to choose and love God. The Christian concept of God is not such that you could deny Him worship if He made Himself undeniable. In fact, the Bible states that in the End, every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord [Isaiah 45:23; Romans 14:11; Phillipians 2:10-11], regardless of whether they are saved or not. At that point in history, God will reveal Himself in His full glory, the Books will be opened and the world will be judged.

Until the consummation of history, God seeks those who will worship Him in spirit and in truth [John 4:23] and assures us that we shall find Him if we seek him with all of our heart. [Deut 4:9; Jeremiah 29:13; Matt. 7:7; Acts 17:27].

Yet again the evidence strongly suggests that there is a God, so it behooves us to determine if the evidence is compelling and, if so, what sort of God there is and what He expects of us. A man lost in a dark forest may reject the bit of light given him, but he should not expect that another light source more to his preferences should be offered instead. He should respond to the light given him and follow it to its source if he expects to find greater light!

Again, this God cannot reveal Himself in all his undeniable glory or free will would be impossible. He does not want the “worship” of automatons. But He has stacked the deck in his favor and it is to this “obviousness” that Brooks Robinson refers. He has revealed himself in nature [in its complexity, order, existence, intelligent design, et cetera], by written revelation [the Bible] and by robing Himself in flesh in the incarnation [Jesus Christ]. “

–Sirius Knott

 

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Caleb & Sol says:

    Good Scripture reference with Luke 16:31. I can’t tell you how many times I have used that in conversation.

    Thanks for your words!

    -Sol
    http://www.calebandsol.com

  2. Neil says:

    The demand of some atheists for scientific evidence for God’s existence is born of either disingenuousness or a lack of understanding.

    They can’t use empirical testing to prove that only empirical testing qualifies as evidence, as that is a circular reference.

    They also make a category mistake. You don’t use a scale to weigh the color blue, because colors don’t have weight. In the same way, you don’t use methods designed to test material things if you want to determine the truth about immaterial things.

    Christians can point to all sorts of evidence for the existence of God, the resurrection of Jesus and the accuracy and reliability of the Bible: Cosmological, teleological, logical, moral, historical and more.

    If they want to debate the evidence, that is fine. But skeptics really tip their hands when they insist that only empirical evidence is permitted, or that we have no evidence or that they have the same amount of evidence for their Flying Spaghetti Monster.

    Also consider their typically dismissive reaction to the evidence of the testimony of eyewitnesses or reliable sources. They often insist that they only trust empirical evidence and not that of eyewitnesses, but that would mean they’d have to create their own test equipment and replicate every single experiment before they trusted the results. They obviously don’t do that. They use their judgment and experience to determine who they think is trustworthy and they rely on their conclusions.

    So even with their scientific evidence they are constantly relying on the evidence of eyewitnesses or what they deem as reliable sources.

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