When I was growing up, my dad never let me win at anything. On the other hand, if we’d been playing, say, chess, and I was about to make a dumb move, dad would sometimes say, “You sure you wanna make that move?” That was as close as he’d come to giving me a break.
Someone aught to do the same for Richard Dawkins and many of his closest atheist followers. In their endless fight to deny the existence of God, Dawkins has made what may very well be his dumbest move yet. As a way of explaining, I’ll first give you my moves and then I’ll give you the atheist’s latest dumb move.
If God exists we could expect that He would leave us with hints of His existence.
If God did not exist we would not expect to find ANY hints of His existence.
If Creator God exists, then we would expect that there would be “something” as opposed to nothing.
If Creator God does not exist, then there is no reason for there to be anything at all.
Yet, the universe exists. And since matter cannot exist from eternity past, nor can matter create itself, the existence of the universe is just what one would expect if Creator God exists.
If Creator God exists, then we would expect whatever He created, in this case the universe, to be mathematically precise.
If Creator God did not exist, then we would not expect to find any universe at all - BUT if there was an accidental universe we would certainly expect it to be chaotic and unpredictable. After all, from everything we know and observe, the bigger the bang the bigger the mess.
Yet, the universe that exists is so precise that inductive reasoning and learning and planning is possible. Just as one would expect if Creator God exists.
If Creator God exists, we would expect our universe to be life-sustaining
If Creator God does not exist, we should expect a life-prohibiting universe
Yet our universe does host life. Science tells us that to have a universe so finely tuned as ours is a 1 in a trillion-trillion chance. Science also tells us that 1 chance in 10 ^ 50 against, is the same as impossible. Each and every one of the constants and qualities found in our universe are needed to be exactly as they are for life to exist in our universe. Not a single one of them can be different than they are. This is what one would expect if Creator God exists.
If Creator God exists, then we would expect to find order, predictable order, the kind of order by which you could launch space probes with precision and expect them to go where you tell them to go. All scientific, inductive reasoning is based on the assumption of our predictable order.
If Creator God does not exist, then there is not the slightest rational justification for us to count on anything being tomorrow as it is today or as it was a thousand years ago. If Creator God does not exist, we could not expect to generalise from observed cases to all cases of the same kind. Yet we are able to do precisely that.
Without predictable order we couldn’t learn from experience or rely on our memories, yet we do this all the time because we live in a universe of order and predictability. Just as one would expect if Creator God exists.
If Creator God exists, then we could expect to possess a sense of meaning and context and purpose. We would know at some level that our being here is not accidental.
If Creator God exists, if we are in fact meant for more than just this life, then we could expect to have deep and profound unfulfilled longings for security, value, worth and belonging. These are longings that nothing in this world can satiate.
If Creator God exists, we would sense that we were built for greatness and we would vigorously resist any attempts to “put us down.”
If Creator God does not exist, and everything in this world is the product of “an accidental collocation of atoms,” (B. Russell) then there is no actual purpose. Life is in fact absurd. There is nothing special about us. We are just one accidental species among many.
While atheists tell us this is true, even they don’t live as though this is true. Instead, our sense of greatness, our drive for greatness is so powerful that, under the atheist world-view we have to purposely and with great effort teach ourselves that life does not have meaning or purpose. Just as one would expect if Creator God exists.
If Creator God exists, we could expect to have a longing to connect with Him, to know Him, to learn about Him and from Him. This is true for 95% of the people in this world.
If Creator God exists, those who reject the very idea of His reality would have to spend a great deal of time thinking about, talking about and blogging about ways in which they might deny His existence.
If Creator God does not exist, then we would have to assume that this desire to know Him and to be known by Him must be an illusion; or worse, something we invented to help us survive.
This is in fact what atheists like Richard Dawkins tell us is true.
Atheist’s Dumb Move:
Atheists say that our religious, aesthetic and moral intuitions are there only because they helped our ancestors survive. In fact what Dawkins and others like him are saying is that in the past, false beliefs were MORE effective at helping our ancestors survive than accurate beliefs. They tell us that we humans are genetically prone from a socio-bio-evolutionary standpoint to acting on false beliefs; in fact we are hardwired to do so. Daniel Dennett tells us that evolution can only be trusted to give us cognitive faculties that help us live on, NOT to provide us with faculties that give us an accurate and true picture of the world around us.
I don’t think these atheist leaders understand the implications of what they’re saying? The important question is, do you?
Modern atheists are telling us that laws of reason have to make sense to us ONLY because they help us survive, not because they tell us the truth. Dawkins is saying that if God makes sense to us, if hints of God’s existence draw us to the conclusion that He exists, it’s only because that belief helped our ancestors survive and so we’re hardwired for seeing hints of God’s existence where no hints actually exist.
“Atheists are saying that we can’t trust our cognitive faculties.”
“No, no, no. Not at all. Our cognitive faculties work just fine. We just can’t trust them when it comes to knowing about God.”
That boys and girls is the atheist’s really dumb move, and I don't think that you really want to make it. If our cognitive faculties only tell us what we need to survive, not what is true, then we can’t trust them about ANYTHING at all. You can’t have it both ways. It can’t be one and not the other. Here is the reality.
. If we CAN trust our cognitive faculties about anything, then we can also trust them when they direct us to believe in evidence that points us to Creator God.
. If we CAN’T trust our cognitive faculties when they provide us with hints of Creator God’s existence, then we can’t trust them about anything at all.
It’s one or the other.
Alvin Plantinga tells us:
“People like Dawkins hold that there is a conflict between science and religion. The truth of the matter, however, is that the conflict is between science and naturalism.”
Recognising the flaw in the new atheist’s dumb argument, atheist, Leon Wieseltier, editor of The New Republic points out:
“Daniel Dennett portrays reason in service to natural selection, and as a product of natural selection. But if reason is just a product of natural selection, then how much confidence can we have in a rational argument FOR [the theory of] natural selection? The power of reason is owed to the independence of reason, and to nothing else. . . evolutionary biology cannot invoke the power of reason even as it destroys it.”
Our Cognitive Faculties are the greatest hint of all regarding the existence of Creator God. We are not only unique among all the species of the world. Each of us is unique amidst our own species. Each of us has been given cognitive faculties that we can trust. In fact, we do trust our cognitive faculties and well we should. God has made us able to form true beliefs based upon true knowledge. He has given us clues to His existence, clues that we can trust. We can logically and rationally reach conclusions based on evidence that would ONLY be there if Creator God exists.
If Creator God exists then there is no mystery to the Big Bang (which is a working definition of a miracle), or the fine-tuning of the universe, or the regularity and precision with which our universe operates. In fact, if Creator God exists, these things can and should be expected to be present.
If Creator God exists then our intuitions about meaning and context and purpose can and should be expected and trusted.
On the other hand, if Creator God does not exist, the Big Bang, the fine tuning of the universe, our awareness of objective morals, values and obligations, our ability to discern truth and to reason are absolutely inexplicable.
. Yet the Big Bang did happen, the fine tuning makes perfect sense in a life sustaining universe, we live by clearly objective morals, values and obligations, we reason and compute with great dexterity and we do so because Creator God does exist.
If Creator God did not exist then there would be no reason to believe your rational faculties.
. Yet we do believe them and we do use them because He does exist.
If Creator God did not exist then there would be no ability to trust that there would be regularity of the universe.
. Yet we continue to use inductive reasoning based on the regularity of the universe because He does exist.
If Creator God did not exist then there would be no reason for trusting our senses that love and beauty matter.
. But we do trust that those things matter and we do so in a deeply profound and personal way. We behave this way because Creator God does exist.
Of course a person can admit that our universe has intelligent observers who thrive in a biosphere perfectly suited to our existence and a person can try to believe that this all came about by accident.
. But it makes much more sense to believe that it is not an accident.
. It makes much more sense to believe that Creator God exists.