1. I am happy to profess that I believe in God...
a. Such faith is a source of great comfort - 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
b. And according to the Bible, necessary to pleasing God - Hebrews 11:6
2. Why do I believe in God?
a. I cannot see Him, I've never heard His voice
b. Yet I believe it is more reasonable to believe in God than not to
3. What reasons are there for believing in God? While not exhaustive, here are several reasons, the first commonly referred to as the teleological argument for God
1. Orderly movement of heavenly bodies, making space travel possible
2. Animal instinct, such as the migration patterns of birds, eels, and salmon
3. The human body itself, the complexity of the eye
1. Design suggests a designer
2. Design suggests a Being with intelligence possessing purpose; for example:
a. A watch shows design, and implies a watchmaker
b. To credit such intricate and precise workmanship to blind chance is unreasonable
1. Everywhere people have a sense of ought
2. That in certain circumstances, certain things should be done
3. People are concerned:
a. That people should act a certain way
b. That people do not often act the way they should
4. Even atheists and agnostics have a sense of justice, and are angered when it is violated as in the case of rape and murder
1. This moral nature in man suggests a Moral Being as the Original Cause
2. If there is no God, there is no right or wrong, good or evil
3. If there is no God, no atheist can object on moral grounds if want to kill them
C. A similar reason to believe in God is called the general argument
1. "Men in all the world, and throughout all time, not only believe in deity, but also engage in acts of worship and devotion."
2. "The religious principle is extremely potent in all nations, dominating their thought and history."
3. "Everywhere the human heart has a craving for God. There will be exceptions as individuals, but the exceptions do not invalidate the rule. The atheist is an exception in every society!"
1. For every deepest longing of man, there is something that satisfies it
a. E.g., food satisfies man's hunger
b. E.g., water satisfies man's thirst
2. There must be a reality (i.e., God) that complements and meets the universal craving for a Supreme Being
3. Paul says this longing for God was placed in man by God Himself - Acts 17:26-27
C. Then there is the cosmological argument for believing in God
1. This is also called the argument from first cause
2. It is based upon the premise that every effect must have a cause
1. The cosmos (universe) is an effect that has adequate cause
2. The Bible reveals that adequate cause: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." - Genesis 1:1
3. A common objection is often raised: "Who created God?"
a. The law which states every effect has a cause applies to things that are "physical"
b. God by definition is not physical, and therefore not bound by laws which we may discern to apply to physical things
1) God is a spiritual being - cf. John 4:24
2) His omnipresence is an example of how He defies laws of nature - cf. Jeremiah 23:23-24
c. So the argument does not apply to Him; He is the Uncaused Cause of all things!
C. There is also the aesthetic argument for believing in God
1. This argument is based upon the presence of beauty and sublimity in the universe
2. It observes that you have both:
a. The presence of beauty in nature itself, and in art produced by man
b. The response of man to such beauty (appreciation and awe)
1. How did this "beauty", and the "ability to appreciate" it, develop?
2. Were both the result of blind chance?
3. Or did it come from a Supreme Being, who is:
a. Intelligent (an argument from design)
b. Moral (an argument from our sense of ought)
c. Artistic (an argument from beauty and our sense of it) - Psalm 96:4-6
2. Other arguments can be offered to support the existence of God:
a. Fulfilled prophecies in the Scriptures
b. Scientific foreknowledge of the Scriptures
c. Uniformity of the Scriptures
d. Evidences for the resurrection of Jesus from the dead
-- We shall examine these when we talk about believing in the Bible, Jesus, etc.
3. Do you believe in God?
a. Faith in God is a choice that we make between two alternatives.
1) The river of evidence for God's reality runs strong and deep, but its current is not irresistible.
2) Many people do swim against it, at least for awhile.
b. Choosing to believe that God exists is a voluntary act of trust.
1) We believe not because we think the reality of God is absolutely unequivocal, but because we judge the evidence to be greatly in its favor.
2) After careful thought, faith puts its trust and confidence in a premise that is seen to be supported by the weight of the evidence.
3) Faced with the ultimate fork in the road, faith understands that a decision must be made, and it responsibly chooses one alternative.
c. But the decision to believe isn't merely the adoption of an intellectual position. It's the courageous taking of a stand.
1) Like all ideas, the idea of God has consequences
2) Faith dares us to accept those consequences. It says: "I have considered the Matter and am prepared to make my choice. What I have seen has taught me to trust this thing which I can't see, the reality of God. I not only believe, I am prepared to follow my faith wherever it leads." -- Diligently Seeking God
3. Are you willing to make the decision to believe in God?
a. The time is coming, however, when the reality of God will no longer be a matter of faith.
b. It will be an overwhelming fact, impossible to deny and terrifying in its implications for those who have tried to deny it.
c. "As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to God." - Romans 14:11
d. Only the purposely ignorant would suppress the evidence for the existence of God. "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse" - Romans 1:20
-- Don Treadway, March 2006 --