Reason for God – Part 10

In Chapter 8 of Tim Keller’s, The Reason for God, he takes up the title, The Clues for God.  He starts with a powerful quote from Somerset Maugham (author of The Painted Veil which has also become a popular movie):

If one puts aside the existence of God and the survival after life as too doubtful…one has to make up one’s mind as to the use of life.  If death ends all, if I have neither to hope for good nor to fear evil, I must ask myself what I am here for, and how in these circumstances I must conduct myself.  Now the answer is plain, but so unpalatable that most will not face it.  There is no meaning for life, and [thus] life has no meaning.

Moving on from a powerful opening quote, the following are some excerpts from Chapter 8 (pp 127-142).

  • How can we believe in Christianity if we don’t even know whether God exists?  Though there cannot be irrefutable proof for the existence of God, many people have found strong clues for his reality — divine fingerprints — in many places.
  • Something had to make the Big Bang happen — but what?
    • If we are looking at this as an argument proving the existence of a personal God, it doesn’t get us all the way there.  However, if we are looking for a clue — a clue that there is something besides the natural world — it is very provocative for many people.
  • For organic life to exist, the fundamental regularities and constants of physics — the speed of light, the gravitational constant, the strength of the week and strong nuclear forces — must all have values that together fall into an extremely narrow range.  The probability of this perfect calibration happening by chance is so tiny as to be statistically negligible.
    • Although organic life could have just happened without a Creator, does it make sense to live as if that infinitely remote chance is true?
  • To put it another way, science cannot prove the continued regularity of nature, it can only take it on faith.
  • If we are the product of accidental natural forces, then what we call “beauty” is nothing by a neurological hardwired response to particular data.
    • Love too must be sen in this light.  If we are the result of blind natural forces, then what we call “love” is simply a biochemical response, inherited from ancestors who survived because this trait helped them survive.
    • We have a longing for joy, love, and beauty that no amount or quality of food, sex, friendship, or success can satisfy.  We want something that nothing in this world can fulfill.  Isn’t that at least a clue that this “something” that we want exists?
    • This unfulfillable longing, then, qualifies as a deep, innate human desire, and that makes it a major clue that God is there.
  • Evolutionists say that if God makes sense to us, it is not because he is really there, it’s only because that belief helped us survive and so we are hardwired for it.
    • However, if we can’t trust our belief-forming faculties to tell us the truth about God, why should we trust them to tell us the truth about anything, including evolutionary science?
    • If our cognitive faculties only tell us what we need to survive, not what is true, why trust them about anything at all?

~ by toddbumgarner on April 14, 2008 5:39 am.

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