Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Analysis of Christianity Part 2 - "Believing in God is Only Logical"

(Previous: Part 1 – “Introduction: The Logic Behind Faith”)

In the Introduction (Part 1), I discussed about how a Christian’s faith is actually based on logic.  And the reason why those who dismiss faith can’t see how the logic of it all works is that they do not agree with two basic premises: that God exists and that the Bible is God’s Word.  In this essay, I would have to make the case that the premise of God existing is appropriate and valid.  Or to put it simply, to make the case that God exists.   I will also be writing in the future a section exclusively for the Bible, but I don’t need to defend it as a premise.  I already made the case on why the Bible is an appropriate premise for this series of analysis of Christianity in Part 1.

Let me start this part with a quote from a legendary movie franchise, the Matrix Trilogy, and a thesis from a brilliant French mathematician, to whom a law about pressure was named after.


"Then tomorrow we may all be dead, but how would that be different from any other day? This is a war, and we are soldiers. Death can come for us at any time, in any place. Now consider the alternative. What if I am right? What if the prophecy is true? What if tomorrow the war could be over? Isn't that worth fighting for? Isn't that worth dying for?"

That was a quote by Morpheus in a Matrix movie (from “Reloaded”, if I got it right).  I consider it as the ultimate epitomic quote of life scenarios in which the "you got nothing to lose anyway, therefore go all in" philosophy applies (I had talked about an application of this philosophy in the story on how I won a quiz bowl medal in college).      

(You know where this is going… ) The logic of this can be applied on the belief in God.  We will all end up dead anyway.  But what if God does exist?  What if there’s an afterlife?  What if it’s all true?  Isn’t it worth it?

This was Blaise Pascal’s point when he coined his Pascal’s Wager.  The main point (or one of the main points) of the thesis is summarized in this matrix:

So in a hypothetical scenario in which God does not exist, humanity – both Christians and non-Christians - will have the same end: no afterlife, just death – existence ceases.   However, in the scenario in which God does exist, there are two different ends: A Christian “gains all” (heaven) and a non-Christian gets “misery” (hell). 

Therefore, actually believing in God is only logical.  “Wagering” for God’s existence logically dominates “wagering” against God’s existence.  If God does not exist, the one who “wagered” for God’s existence will earn the same result (status quo) as with the one who “won the wager” – the one who “wagered” against God’s existence.  But if God does exist, then the one who “wagered” for God’s existence will earn a reward, while the one who “wagered” against God’s existence gets a punishment.          

HOWEVER, Pascal’s wager is incomplete and in some ways flawed.  This is because of three reasons: a) the format of the logic is actually applicable to arguing for faith in a God or gods in general and not actually exclusively applicable to argue for a Christian God (though, that was the intention of Pascal), b) belief in an existence of God is not enough to get the “reward”, that is not how Christianity works, and c) a Christian does not “wager” for God’s existence just because it’s the practical option even if he does not actually believe that God exists.  No.  A Christian believes and knows that his God exists.

But I start with this because this is something basic.  That in this context and perspective, when a Christian believes that God that can't be seen exists, it is not actually illogical as the world perceives. 

Moreover, since a Christian really believes in God and already knows the outcome of the battle, they, then, know that “it’s all worth fighting and dying for.” 

But, let us move on.  This time, we interrogate the “star witness” of God’s existence: Creation.


God’s fingerprints are left in his Creation.  Still, some (or most?) Men of Science deny it.   They say that it’s “illogical and ridiculous” to have just mere faith to believe that Someone that can’t be seen by the eye created the universe.  However, these people are the ones who have an illogical and ridiculous faith in their beliefs.  They have no empirical proof for their beliefs of the universe being created in a span of billions of years (contrary to the Biblical 6 days) or their concept of evolution.

“But we have mathematics,” they say, “By equation, we had arrived in a rational conclusion that the universe had expanded in billions of years.”  Unless they have empirical and testable proof of that, they really can’t validate anything.  It’s all theory.  And theory based on math does not mean it is always true to reality (see “Achilles and the Tortoise” paradox or Zeno’s paradoxes).  There are actually plenty of logical and scientific arguments that point the flaws of this “just happened” theory (in which, Big Bang is the most popular form), but, really, to claim that the universe “just happened” without cause or design defies common sense.  In the law of this universe, there has still nothing that had been observed that proves what “just happened” theory claims: that something from a chaotic bang can create an eventual purposeful order without being directed.

And it’s also what transpires in the evolution debate.  Abiogenesis (life existing from inanimate matter) or macroevolution (man descended from ape-like ancestors) has no empirical or testable evidences in any form.   Any “decent” arguments or points for evolution are all based on microevolution.  And microevolution can’t be associated at all with abiogenesis or macroevolution.  In microevolution, a living thing may “evolve” to adapt to environmental conditions, but it still has its nature intact – the toad might had become larger or had changed color, but the toad remains a toad, it did not evolve to become a lizard (which is macroevolution concept).            

Logically, these scientists that think that believing in a God that created everything is ridiculous are functioning with unsound premises.  Their premises or evidences are all based on “circle of information.”  It means that the books or articles arguing their point have references almost limited to each other.   They just source each other out.  Any first-hand or first tier evidences are just assumptions that their theory is the only workable model.      

But still, even if the arguments on an anti-Creationism perspective are incomplete and flawed, they are still considered “scientific” which puzzles me.  At least they should teach the Biblical point of view –which has some scientific evidences – with the same exposure as Theory of Evolution or Big Bang – which has a case that is as comparable to the “faith” on unseen data as proposed by Creationism.  Though, these scientific evidences for the Bible-point of view of Creation is not really that strong.  But that’s the point.  Why is anti-Creationism theories more accepted “scientifically” in our academic circles when its case is as strong or as weak as Creationism?  It is only fair for Creationism to get equal exposure as anti-Creationism.    

These scientists that deny the existence of God and insist that Creation just happened by cumulative chances and accidents of circumstance and situations are actually dwelling on ridiculous odds of clear impossibility.  Their point of view is comparable to – in the words of Ian Malcolm (protagonist of Michael Crichton’s “The Lost World) – “imagining that a tornado can hit a junkyard and assemble the parts into a working 747.”  Ridiculous compared to believing God created the universe.  In the dictum of Sherlock Holmes which say “if you eliminate the impossible (the odds of creation “just happening”), whatever remains, whether improbable (a Creator creating Creation), must be the truth,” this time, “wagering” for the existence of God begins to make more and more sense.  For something that appears to be a chaotic event to have a result of order, there must be an Engineer that planned and designed all the details.         

But these “science guys” will not at all surrender.  They are likely to point out…

“What of dinosaurs?” they ask, “The evidences of existence of dinosaurs destroy the idea of Creationism.”  My reply is, “How?”

Anti-Creationism theories dwell on the premise that the universe existed for billions of years, while the Christian point of view of Creation (or Creationism) estimate existence of Creation to mere 6,000 years.  Now, since the fact that dinosaurs existed in the past is true, this is used as an argument against Creationism because evolutionists estimated that dinosaurs lived 235 millions of years ago and became extinct 65 million of years ago.  However, the dating methods on how they estimated the time are flawed (look it up!  Do not assume that carbon dating is perfect).  These methods rely on untestable assumptions as its factors to estimate the time.   Thus, different assumptions result to different results.  They are inconsistent, thus unreliable. 

In both carbon 14 dating and radiometric dating, the first step is to ESTIMATE – and when I mean estimate, it means just picking a random number you like – the age of time before running the test.  Then they will run the test.  You see the absurdity?  They operate in an unscientific manner of biasing the result by determining the desired result before starting.  It’s like using their conclusion to validate the premises of the logic instead of the other way around.    So, evolutionists would give the parameters of millions of years as parameters, and the method’s result would be something in that parameter.  Thus, they estimated dinosaurs to had lived hundreds of millions of years ago because they want to believe that dinosaurs had lived hundreds of millions of years ago.      

In the Bible, it is mentioned that all land animals have been created in the 6th day – this would include dinosaurs (note: the "dinosaurs" like Pterodactyl [“flying dinosaur”] or Ichthyosaur [“sea dinosaur”] are technically not dinosaurs at all.  Only the land giant reptiles are considered dinosaurs.).  Thus, contrary to evolutionist view, humans did walk with dinosaurs.  In fact, what appears to be human footprints were found in limestone along with dinosaur footprints near the Paluxy River in Texas.  In the Bible, we can find creatures like “behemoth” and “leviathan” having the same descriptions with dinosaurs.  “Dragons” were also mentioned in the Bible, as well as ancient traditions and accounts.  Wouldn’t it be possible that these were references to dinosaurs?  Many of these descriptions would fit dinosaurs nicely

The idea of this earth existing for billions of years is already contradictory to the fact that our moon is a young moon.  If 14,300,000 tons of meteoric dust falls on the Earth each year, the same amount of dust will also fall on the moon each year.  In 5 billion years, it should be 137 feet deep.  But Neil Armstrong’s footprint only went 1/8 inch of dust.  Unless the Moon Landings are indeed a hoax, as conspiracy theorists point out, then this fact should destroy the idea that the Earth existed for billions of years.   Another fact: it would take 14 million years for erosion to wash away the continents, thus, if the Earth is at least one billion years old, it should had been eroded away at least 70 times over.

Now, let’s go to the question on how dinosaurs became extinct.  Meteors, volcanoes, etc. are all speculations.  Now consider a Biblical event called the Flood.  This could explain the fossils we find.  The swift burial in mud would ensure that most of the animals would be preserved into fossils.  But, still, the Bible said that God sent two – seven on some kinds – of every kind of animals into Noah’s Ark.  These include dinosaurs.  “But they are too large,” the evolutionist may point, “Not all kinds of dinosaurs can fit in the Ark along with the other kinds of animals.”  There are hundreds of dinosaur names, but in reality, there are probably about only 50 kinds of dinosaurs.  Many of those dinosaur names are just attributed to bones found which could be of the same kind of dinosaur.  This is like the fact that there are many breeds of dogs but they are all the same kind of animal - dog.  Take that all into consideration and it is very possible for dinosaurs to fit in the Ark.  Some dinosaurs still existed after the Flood (again, the reference of “behemoth” and “dragons” in the Bible and ancient accounts).   Extinction might had happened – not only to dinosaurs, but to other kinds of animals as well – because of difference in post-Flood climatic conditions and pre-Flood climatic conditions that they were not able to adapt to.   Consider also the other factors on documented extinction of animals: lack of food, diseases, and human activity.  Extinction had always been a part of the ecosystem.  Animals die out.  Why should the dinosaurs’ be a special mystery?


I am not saying that Creationism has more scientific evidences than anti-Creationism theories like Big Bang and Theory of Evolution (but it is definitely logically sounder!).  But Creationism is as scientific – or as less scientific – as anti-Creationism.  My point is that the arguments brought by anti-Creationism are weak and not credible to use to deny God’s existence since it dwells on a “faith” itself. Creationism is operating in a premise of faith in an invisible God.  Anti-Creationism is operating in a premise of faith in unempirical and untestable assumptions  


If they can’t win through Science, they will use Philosophy to dismiss God’s existence.  One clever argument to “disprove” the existence of God is the Omnipotence Paradox, which I had already explained as invalid in my essay on some manipulation techniques.  Same with science, those who deny God’s existence through philosophical logic use invalid premises which are inapplicable for God.  

Here is a very popular Internet anecdote (that is falsely attributed to Einstein’s experience as a student).  There are many versions of this story (and it has also been used to argue for other faiths like Hare Krishna).  It is purely fictional but we can derive valuable points from it.  The aim of Omnipotence Paradox is to argue that God can’t exist because an omnipotent God is logically impossible.  In this story, the professor follows the same clever (but flawed) line of thought as Omnipotence Paradox’s logical structure: that a God can’t exist since if he does, then he is evil. 

So, here’s one of its version (I combined ideas of two different variation of the anecdote to make it comprehensive for discussion):

An atheist professor of philosophy speaks to his class on the problem science has with God. He asks one of his new students – a Christian – to stand.
Professor: “You are a Christian, aren't you, son?”
Student: “Yes, sir.”
Prof: “So you believe in God?”
Student: “Absolutely, sir.”
Prof: “Is God good?”
Student: “Sure.”
Prof: “Is God all-powerful?
Student: “Yes.”
Prof: “My brother died of cancer even though he prayed to God to heal him. Most of us would attempt to help others who are ill. But God didn't. How is this God good then?”
(The student was silent.)
Prof: “You can't answer, can you? Let's start again, young fella. Is God good?”
Student: “Yes.”
Prof: “Is Satan good?”
Student: “No.”
Prof: “Where does Satan come from?”
Student: “From...God...”
Prof: “That's right. Tell me son, is there evil in this world?”
Student: “Yes.”
Prof: “Evil is everywhere, isn't it? And God did make everything. Correct?”
Student: “Yes.”
Prof: “So who created evil?”
(The Christian student does not answer.)
Prof: “Is there sickness? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All these terrible things exist in the world, don't they?”
Student: “Yes, sir.”
Prof: “So, who created them?”
(Christian student still has no answer.)
Prof: “Science says you have 5 senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. Have you ever seen God?”
Student: “No, sir.”
Prof: “Have you ever had any sensory perception of God for that matter?”
Student: “No, sir. I'm afraid I haven't.”
Prof: “Yet you still believe in Him?”
Student: “Yes.”
Prof: “According to empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol, science says God doesn't exist. What do you say to that, son?”
Student: “Nothing. I only have my faith.”
Prof: “Yes. Faith. And that is the problem science has with God.”
Student: “Professor, is there such a thing as heat?”
Prof: “Yes.”
Student: “And is there such a thing as cold?”
Prof: “Yes.”
Student: “No sir. There isn't.”
(The lecture theatre becomes very quiet with this turn of events.)
Student: “In fact, sir, cold does not exist. According to the laws of physics, what we consider cold is in reality the absence of heat. Every body or object is susceptible to study when it has or transmits energy, and heat is what makes a body or matter have or transmit energy. Absolute zero (-460 F) is the total absence of heat; and all matter becomes inert and incapable of reaction at that temperature. Cold does not exist. We have created this word to describe how we feel if we have no heat.”
(There is pin-drop silence in the lecture theatre.)
Student: “What about darkness, Professor? Is there such a thing as darkness?”
Prof: “Yes. What is night if there isn't darkness?”
Student: “Once again you are wrong, sir, darkness does not exist, either. Darkness is in reality the absence of light. Light we can study, but not darkness. In fact, we can use Newton's prism to break white light into many colors and study the various wave lengths of each color. You cannot measure darkness. A simple ray of light can break into a world of darkness and illuminate it. How can you know how dark a certain space is? You measure the amount of light present. Isn't this correct? Darkness is a term used by man to describe what happens when there is no light present.  Darkness can’t be measured.  If it can be, you would be able to make darkness darker.”
Prof: “So what is the point you are making, young man?”
Student: “Sir, my point is your philosophical premise is flawed.”
Prof: “Flawed? Can you explain how?”
Student: “Sir, you are working on the premise of duality. You argue there is life and then there is death, a good God and a bad God. You are viewing the concept of God as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, science can't even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism, but has never seen, much less fully understood either one. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing. Death is not the opposite of life: just the absence of it. Now tell me, Professor, does evil exist, then?”
Prof: “Of course, as I have already said. We see it every day. It is in the daily examples of man's inhumanity to man. It is in the multitude of crime and violence everywhere in the world. These manifestations are nothing else but evil.”
Student: “Evil does not exist, sir, or at least it does not exist unto itself. Evil is simply the absence of God. It is just like darkness and cold, a word that man has created to describe the absence of God. God did not create evil. Evil is the result of what happens when man does not have God present in his heart. It's like the cold that comes when there is no heat, or the darkness that comes when there is no light.”
(The professor was, this time, the one silent)
Student:  “Do you teach your students that they evolved from apes?”
Prof: “If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, yes, of course, I do.”
Student: “Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?”
(The Professor shakes his head, beginning to realize where the argument is going.)
Student: “Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor, are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you not a scientist but a preacher?”
(The class is in uproar.)
Student: “Is there anyone in the class who has ever seen the Professor's brain?”
(The class breaks out into laughter.)
Student: “Is there anyone here who has ever heard the Professor's brain, felt it, touched or smelt it? No one appears to have done so. Therefore, according to the established rules of empirical, stable, demonstrable protocol, science says that you have no brain, sir. With all due respect, sir, how do we then trust your lectures, sir?”
(The room is silent. The professor stares at the student, his face unfathomable.)
Prof: “I guess you'll have to take them on faith, son.”
Student: “That is it sir. The link between man and God is FAITH. That is all that keeps things moving and alive.”

The professor made the error of logical arguing against God’s existence by using an invalid premise that God is something finite and measurable.  God transcends creation and time, and he alone has the wisdom to know what the ends of things are.   Man can only grasp as much as what the present condition is, he can only state it as it is, but he can’t really judge it as a good thing or a bad thing.  So, men’s concept of good or bad might not be the same as what God thinks as good or bad.  The professor’s concept of good is (physical) life and bad is (physical) death.  However, death is not an actual opposite of life as a substantial thing by itself, since it’s actually the absence – not opposite – of life.  Then, branding life as good and death is bad crumbles in its logic.  Can the professor really determine if his brother’s death by cancer is a bad thing?  If there is an afterlife, his brother could have now escaped suffering and now experience eternal peace in the hands of his Maker – and that would be a good thing.  Thus, the professor can only state the event as it is: that his brother died of cancer, nothing more and nothing less.  He can’t really judge it as good or bad.  His concept of “good or bad” is not the same as God’s concept of “good and bad.”

The second idea of bad or evil – as presented by the professor (The first is his brother’s death) – is of it being the manifestation of immorality, crime, hatred, violence, etc. exercised by mankind in this world.  Now, the student had already presented the idea of an infinite and immeasurable God by invalidating his professor’s line of argument of using a premise of duality.  The student already established that some ideas or terms exist because it is the state of absence of something.  The student now used this established standing to dismiss evil as a concrete form by itself as an opposite of good when it is actually the absence of good.  Now since there is evil, then there is a God.  Evil existed in mankind because of God’s absence in their hearts.  Very much the idea of what the Fall brought in the nutshell.             
Thirdly, the student destroyed the professor’s argument that only something empirical is actual truth by applying it to the latter’s belief in evolution (I had already argued earlier that belief in evolution is just as a faith as a belief in an invisible God) and the existence of his brain.  His conclusion: faith in the existence of God is not ridiculous, then.    

Every philosophy that argues that God does not exist operates like Omnipotence Paradox and the professor’s arguments.  They operate in premises that are contradictory to their ideas or the premises they use are inappropriate.


By all the arguments I presented above, to believe in God’s existence is only logical.  And nobody can have the credibility nor has the right idea to dismiss that believing in God is something silly.  For them to dismiss God’s existence, they should have a concrete explanation or idea about a non-existence of God to prove things –which they do not have.  They also have “faith” in untestable premises to use in their arguments. 

Atheism – or unbelief of God’s existence – is just ridiculous.  Atheists ridicule faith when they themselves also operate with faith.  Atheism actually needs faith itself to believe that a God does not exist.   In fact, an atheist requires a greater amount of faith to believe that a God does not exist than a Christian who believes that God exists.  It takes more faith to believe in Nothing rather than Something.  Christians’ belief in an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent God serves as a concrete “Deus Ex Machina” answer to every difficult question of life existence and purpose.  Atheists, however, have to believe in… nothing, thus, the answer to life questions is: life has no purpose.  Atheists have to believe that order can rise from chaos without someone ever directing it with purpose, that uniqueness of individuals can come from disorder, and that a design can happen without a designer.

Just judge for yourself what do you think is the more ridiculous kind of faith.  Christians have faith on a God that created and designed everything.  Atheists have faith that Creation existed from nothing and, without direction, developed as we know it today.  Thus, atheists believe that "a tornado can hit a junkyard and assemble the parts into a working 747” (which is something proven to be impossible in reality).

God exists.  The evidences are overwhelming. The argument that God exists is better than the argument that a God does not exists.  Anybody who thinks otherwise are fools (Psalm 14:1-2).
(Technically, this essay is like an extension to the Introduction [Part 1] since it still does not deal much on Christianity’s beliefs itself.  But Part 3’ll do it, starting with the basics: Part 3 – “Basics”)                 

1 comment:

Raven Whisper said...

I must admit that I hardly read any of that. I was just skimming the page while looking for a place to comment. Anyway, your tittle, I believe in God and that they (elohim [plural meaning both man and woman] the name of "I AM" at the burning bush)created the universe. My faith is rooted in music and detailed by quantam physics. This may seem odd to you, but all I want to ask is, when you say that you belive the bible is God's word, do you think of the bible which was edited over and over with so much taken out of it that people are brain washed to bealive that the word of their priest should be held higher then the 'word' (feelings) of their own heart? or the gospel as in all the writtings of the different people who were touched by the words of Christ? I hope you mean the second, and I probably will come back to read some of your blog when I'm not so tired. Honestly, either way I think it's pretty cool that you have a blog for your spirituality, recording the different stages of your spiritual growth for all to see. And, I just wanted to ask you that, I didnt actually want to publicly comment on this.