God's Existence, Science and Faith, Suffering and Evil, Jesus' Resurrection, and Book Reviews

From Laws of Physics to Reasonable Faith

Many may be surprised to find that knowledge is actually the foundation for faith in God.

A Blind Faith And God's Hiddenness

Two common challenges to the truth of the Christian worldview are the seeming hiddenness of God and the accusation that Christianity requires a blind faith. Many people see the great amount of suffering in the world and in their own lives and wonder where God is and why He doesn't seem to care to alleviate the suffering. Many skeptics also see Christians making claims about reality that are demonstrably false, and those people conclude that Christians' faith is a belief despite evidence to the contrary- a blind faith.

The skeptic knows that there must be continuity between the present and the past (and the future) for us to reasonably believe that what happens in the present can be used to infer what has happened in the past (or make predictions about what will happen in the future). Armed with knowledge of the past, there is a solid, logical foundation to conclude something about the future. This also means that without knowledge of the past, there is no solid foundation to trust something with the present or the future. 

This is how the skeptic believes they are being logical as they conclude that the Christian God is hidden (if not non-existent) and unfaithful, and how they also conclude that Christians' faith is blind. Today, I want to take some time to show an understanding of the physical world will demonstrate that the skeptic has made a mistake in their reasoning to both conclusions about God's supposed hiddenness and the supposed blind faith of Christianity. 

Is Faith In God Really Blind?

Let us start with the very book that claims to accurately describe the Christian God: the Bible, and with the actions of this God: creation. If the Bible accurately describes the Christian God, then we have this series of arguments regarding faith in God for present and future experiences:
  1. If the laws of physics are constant, then God's character is constant (Jeremiah 33:25-26).
  2. The laws of physics are constant.
  3. If God's character is constant, then His character can be trusted to be the same across all time.
  4. God's character is constant.
  5. If God's character has been faithful in the past, then His character will be faithful in the present and the future
  6. God's character has been faithful in the past.
  7. Therefore, God's character will be faithful in the present and the future.
This faith is a reasonable faith that is grounded in what we already know and have experienced. For the skeptic who wishes to claim that Christianity is an illogical and unreasonable faith, they must face in inconvenient reality: If they believe that Bible describes the Christian God, then it necessarily follows from Jeremiah 33:25-26 that the Christian God is faithful to His promises, and our trust in Him (faith) for present and future difficulties and sufferings is logically grounded in God's past faithfulness through difficulties and sufferings. This means that our faith in God is a most logical faith.

What If The Laws of Physics Are Not Constant?

However, the soundness of the argument and our trust in the constancy of God's character is dependent upon the reality of the constancy of the laws that govern the heavens and the earth (this universe). If these laws are not constant and have changed and if God is just as constant (the first premise in the argument), then God's character can change. This means that if the laws of physics change, then God's character changes, which necessarily implies that God's promises can be rescinded, His faithfulness is laughable, and He is certainly not to be trusted.

If the skeptic were to deny constant laws of physics to avoid the conclusion that the Christian faith is a reasonable and logical faith, then they would suffer the logical consequence of the collapse of the entire scientific enterprise. While some (non-scientific) skeptics may be willing to live with this logical implication, many would be unwilling to do so. But they would be unwilling to do so at the cost of logical consistency. Because consistency is a necessary feature of logic and because reality is consistent, both logic and reality are abandoned with such a philosophical move. 

Finding Common Ground In A Time of Stark Division

"While we all want to believe that we are committed to truth rather than a narrative, our actions in conversation—how we mistreat evidence, mischaracterize opposing views and arguments, and attack the challenger rather than the challenge—often tell a different story."- Luke Nix

Being taught to avoid talking about politics and religion has led to a lack of understanding of politics and religion. What we should have been taught was how to have a civil conversation about a difficult topic.

The Importance of Recognizing Common Ground

In these times of stark division, it is important that we not allow our disagreements to ultimately result in the destruction of our unity as a society, culture, and Church. There is nothing wrong with a society having a diversity of ideas, as long as those ideas are discussed and debated respectfully. When the wrong ideas are identified, such a respectful dialog can result in the dismissal of false ideas and the acceptance of true ideas. This is progress. Progress towards the objective goal of a society that has and lives according to the view of reality as it actually is and not some delusion. 

However, many times discussion is stifled because we do not recognize common ground with those in which we disagree. When we possess and recognize common ground, we have a connection to maintain a healthy relationship when we have stark disagreements and rigorously debate which view (if either) accurately reflect reality. Today I want to point out six different things that we all hold in common that, if recognized by even one side, can help keep relationships healthy despite disagreements.