Why would we think that God is real?
We live in a universe where we can see, touch, smell, feel and hear many things. When we start to think about where the physical world comes from and why it is the way it is, we discover that there exists more than what we can see, touch, smell, feel or hear! Think about questions like the following (see On Guard, 2010):
- Why does anything at all exist? (See John 1:1,3)
- Why did the universe begin? (See Psalm 19:1 and Genesis 1:1)
- Why is the universe so perfectly balanced and ordered so that life can exist? (See Romans 1:20)
- Why do we experience things as good and evil, wrong and right? (See Mark 10:18)
In thinking hard about questions like these, it seems that the best explanation points to the existence of a being like God. The apostle Paul writes in Romans 1:20: “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”
Philosopher Richard Swinburne observes: “In fact, the hypothesis of the existence of God makes sense of the whole of our experience, and it does so better than any other explanation which can be put forward, and that is the grounds for believing it to be true.”
It seems that God hasn’t left us without any good reasons to think that He really exists (Hebrews 11:6). Unfortunately it is no guarantee that even if people are perhaps persuaded that God exists, that they also desire after him in the sense of wanting to get to know him in an intimate relationship (see for eg. James 2:19).
I would say that God is the best explanation for
- why anything at all exists rather than nothing (see here),
- for the beginning of the universe (see here and here),
- for the fine-tuning of the universe for the existence of intelligent life (see here and here),
- for the existence of objective moral values and duties in the world (see here and here),
- for the historical facts concerning Jesus of Nazareth (see here and here),
- and that even the very possibility of God’s existence implies that He exists (see here).
- But most significant of all is that God can be personally known and experienced (see here and here).
This would be some of the reasons for believing that God, who cannot be experienced by the senses, is real.