It’s not so uncommon these days to turn on the television or other media outlet and find an argument between a Christian and a non-believer regarding the existence of God and the legitimacy of the Christian Faith. The non-believer may try to point out the lack of empirical evidence supporting God’s existence. The topic of the universe’s creation may come up. Of course the Believer will acknowledge that God created the universe, which, not coincidentally, is why Believers are often referred to as Creationists. The non-believer will invoke the Big Bang Theory. The Believer, if savvy, may point out that the Big Bang Theory really only proposes how the universe came to be; it doesn’t give the cause. The non-believer, if well-read, may bring up quantum fluctuations, a mathematically backed theory that claims the universe could have come from nothing. Maybe then, the Believer asks who or what created the circumstances where such quantum fluctuations would even come into play? In this hypothetical scenario, the two sides involved could debate back and forth for hours with no real resolution. The non-believer would likely come away believing he or she won the debate, and unfortunately many who witnessed the debate, especially other non-believers, would probably agree with that assessment. Believers are often portrayed as the losers of such debates.
It’s not that Believers are not as smart as non-believers or inferior debaters. The reason is that winning such debates require “unequivocal” empirical data. Non-believers cannot prove that God doesn’t exist, but therein lies their advantage in such meetings of the minds. They don’t have to prove that God doesn’t exist. They only have to provide information that suggests that God’s existence is not necessary. Quantum fluctuations don’t definitively prove that there is no God. They only provide an explanation of how the universe could have come to be without any direct action (i.e., God commanding it). Non-believers seem to have the advantage when it comes to these debates.
Occam’s Razor, a logical principle, dictates that in a situation where many explanations exist, the one that requires the fewest assumptions is most likely the correct one. Few would argue that belief in God requires the fewest assumptions. However, such discussions are ultimately about the nature of the physical world, and those arguing against God are using the rules agreed upon by the science world. By definition knowing something in a physical sense implies that you have access to information that can be verified by empirical data or observation. In other words, worldly knowing is akin to “believing it when you see it,” but that is not how our relationship with God works.
In John 20:29: Then Jesus told him,
Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.
Therein lies the crux of the dilemma. By trying to debate over God’s existence, Believers must enter the realm of logic and reason. However, our belief in God is based on faith not the world’s logic. To many non-believers, blind faith is illogical and unreasonable, but for Believers, faith is everything. However, it is anything but blind. According to Hebrews 11:1,
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
Those who follow God don’t do so because they have physical proof of his existence.
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. – Hebrews 11:6
If God wanted, he could come down to Earth and provide unmistakable evidence of his existence winning all arguments for Believers forever, but God is not out to give us the ammo we need to win human debates. We do know that in the Old Testament he made himself known in ways that could not be argued against, and the people still turned against him time and time again. God wants us to choose him.
It is important to understand that God wants us to do things that society at large won’t necessarily understand. By this world’s standards, believing in a being we can’t see, or interact with in a physical sense is foolish. Then again, by human standards much of what Christians are tasked to do seems foolish. We are to love our enemies even when those enemies want to kill us. We are not supposed to pursue earthly riches even though we need money to survive just like non-believers. We are to sacrifice for the benefit of others even when we have no real relationship with them and get nothing from it. We are to do the right thing always, even when it seems to be to our detriment. In many cases, these actions may defy human logic. That is okay because it is our faith that guides us. Maybe when others witness us living our lives fully and abundantly by faith, they too will find a reason to believe even if it does not seem to be the logical thing to do. We may lose arguments, but we’ll win souls for God. That’s what matters.