Does God exist? Was the universe intelligently designed? Or has it developed by natural, random happenings that created life itself and a vast universe by evolving over billions of years? Is there any overwhelming evidence one way or the other? Does it even matter? These are some big questions that underlie our understanding of the world and everything in it. And because the answers to these questions influence how we live and how our lives are molded, it seems they absolutely DO matter – a lot. Let’s talk about some important questions for which every person needs answers.
Does it even matter?
So why do the big questions I just asked even matter in our everyday lives? The quick answer is that everyone has a faith (or set of beliefs) of some sort that shapes their lives. Beliefs are thoughts we’ve accepted as true – even if they aren’t actually true. And so, we make our daily choices, both big and small, based on these beliefs.
For example, beliefs about our own self-worth affect the quality of our choices. We choose based on what we believe we’re worth. We even choose to protect or forfeit our own valuable freedom to choose based on these beliefs. Beliefs about our purpose for being alive are particularly responsible for our ability to self-motivate and correct our course when necessary. What’s more, we live in a world that’s changing fast, we are seeing philosophies and beliefs in an unprecedented state of flux. Just look at how fast and how often we change our beliefs about how to behave in the presence of a pandemic. Or consider how quickly the collective mindset has shifted in many areas of the country as to whether historical statues and monuments should be protected and preserved even if they commemorate people with flawed values and unlikable backstories.
Know what you believe and why you believe it.
Understanding just how fast beliefs can shift and change us, it becomes quite important to know more than just what you believe. You must also know why you believe those things. We need solid evidence with intelligent reasoning about the big questions so that we can:
- Defend our beliefs with confidence.
- Challenge our beliefs with an open mind.
- Change our beliefs when the demands of both our logic and emotions align to support that change is necessary.
- And perhaps most importantly, so that we know the difference between the latest half-baked philosophies that change with public opinion and principles that have stayed true throughout the tests of time and the human experience.
Answers to some big questions ultimately require faith.
In his latest book, “Compelling Evidence for God,” Dr. Ray Lincoln shares some intelligently acceptable answers to some of the biggest questions a human can ask. I recommend you grab a copy of the book at your earliest opportunity. But I want to give you a peek inside.
Here’s a big question: Can anyone scientifically prove that God exists?
In short, NO. Science is, to many people, their religion because it’s what they seem to believe more than anything else. But we can’t scientifically examine something that’s not made of an examinable substance. And the God of the Bible doesn’t exist in an examinable form. He has no physical existence; He is spirit. He’s unobservable and untouchable and, therefore, outside of the reach of scientific examination.
But don’t forget, the atheist cannot scientifically prove there is no God either — for the exact same reasons. So, when the atheist shouts at the theist, “You can’t prove that there’s a God,” he has just undermined his own stance if he then declares that he can prove there is no God. An act of faith is required for both the theist and the atheist. In other words, what people choose to believe for whatever reason is based on the evidence they choose to accept as true.
Genuinely search for satisfactory answers.
The answer to questions like, “Does God exist?” have exercised the best minds throughout the ages. Sincere seekers after truth cannot and should not rest without a genuine search for satisfactory answers. This is so because your belief in the answer shapes your choices and, ultimately, the course of your life. If you believe God exists, created the universe, and has a plan for you, you’re more likely to discover that plan… and follow it. Whereas, if you do not believe there’s a plan, you’re likely to rely more heavily on chance, your own current knowledge set, or the opinions of others. Either way, the answer matters.
Grab your copy of “Compelling Evidence for God,” and let’s keep going with some big questions.
If life is a chance happening, what does that mean for you?