Did you know that God has been proven not to exist?
It was on the eve of the nineteenth century that renowned scientist Pierre-Simon Laplace met with Napoleon to discuss his research. On review of Laplace’s work, Napoleon remarked that there was no mention of the Creator. Laplace famously replied, “I have no need of that hypothesis.”
Startled? You should be! That this would be taken in any way as an argument against the existence of God is asinine. We may as well argue that there is no need to talk about an artist in regard to a painting, because the brush is explanation enough.
In his book, The Grand Design, Stephen Hawking says, “spontaneous creation is the reason why there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist.” His statement almost sounds like an explanation, much as Laplace’s comment. But it is clear that calling the existence of the universe “spontaneous” is no explanation at all. Rather it is the absence of all reason; ironic for such a brilliant scientist.
Likewise, a new book called A Universe from Nothing by Lawrence Krauss and Richard Dawkins, argues that even the nothingness of space has weight and mass. They also describe a process by which particles spontaneously appear from literal nothingness. “Oo!” they say, “here is evidence that God did not create, but it randomly appeared.” Sorry, guys, but that is not a reasonable or logical conclusion to make; in fact it is no conclusion at all. It is simply a sophisticated way of saying, “Duh, we don’t know.”
No, what Laplace said, whether he meant to or not, is that he does not need to give a supernatural explanation to fill in the proverbial “gaps” of his research. He found a logical and natural process.
Logical and natural does not mean that God is not involved. Somehow somewhere someone decided that God only could do the supernatural, when in fact, the Bible teaches that God is intimately involved in all natural processes as well, essentially writing all the laws of the physical universe.
God does not only stand in the gaps. He is all in all. The gospel of John, Colossians, and Romans all teach that creation, all of it, was created for him, by him, through him, to give him all glory and honor.
A special note to my readers: my break for the last four months has given me time to rest, recharge, and refocus my purpose in writing this blog. Thanks for hanging with me. What better way to start back in with a post on something from nothing?
As I picked up The God Delusion a few years ago, I have to say I was intimated. Richard Dawkins is well-known and well-established as not only an atheist and intellectual, but he is also a sort of crusader for the cause of New Atheism. While I do not doubt his intellect, his arguments against there being a God (we can’t explain Him, we can’t ascertain His origin, we can’t locate Him) and against religion in general (all religion leads to violence) are laughable at best.
In extremely accessible language, Alister McGrath finds these and other gaping holes in the New Atheist rhetoric. These are not your typical atheists. While classic atheism simply argued against any sort of “higher power” and practiced religious tolerance, often even embracing it for its propagation of morality and community, the New Atheists see religion as only leading us off a cliff.
Making his rounds this week to promote his new show, Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman, the actor who twice portrayed the God of the Bible said that he is not sure if there is a god at all. The series is intended to explore the limits of what science can explain and exploring the expanse of space and time to learn all that is possible.
In an interview with CNN, Freeman responded to a comment about him being “a man of God” with a series of “no”s followed by an explanation of his views of science and faith. Faith, he said, is where the lack of scientific explanation causes us to have to create assumptions about reality. What has not been explained we have to take on “faith.” This is certainly a different notion than the biblical concept of faith so hardly makes him a man of faith either.
Freeman further discusses with CNN his ambivalence on the existence of God: either God exists or it is “a cosmic crap shoot.” He says that life likely evolved in many other planets, including this one, and implies that science will surely some day be able to explain it all. Freeman is sure that one day we will discover how to bend space and time so that we can explore far off planets and potentially other galaxies for those answers.
Over the past several months I have had a unique opportunity to interact with atheists on matters of faith (or “lack of faith” as it were). It is interesting to me how time and time again they tend to be keenly aware of the problems in the church, although not always a full understanding of what biblical Christianity is all about.
One recent observation was made by Hemant Mehta in his post titled “God Doesn’t Have a Plan for Your Life.” You may be inclined to quickly react against that, but before you do consider the fact that it is essentially a line taken from another post, of which Mehta’s is a critique. Donald Miller, famed Christian and author of Blue Like Jazz, wrote a post titled “Does God Have a Specific Plan for Your Life? Probably Not,” where he explains that unless you have heard a donkey talk to you or have become pregnant in spite of never having had sex, God probably does not have a specific program for you to follow.