Does God Exist?
Prepared text by John Rankin for a mini-forum on WTIC Radio (1080 AM Hartford), February 9, 2010: guest, Dr. Ed Buckner, president of American Atheists, Inc. Monday, February 8, 2010.
Does God Exist?
Yes – the God of the Bible. Let’s consider four angles in four minutes.
- First, we need to define “existence.”
Yahweh Elohim (the LORD God in the Hebrew text) revealed his Name to Moses: I AM WHO I AM, or simply, I AM. This is the very definition of the Existence that defines existence. I AM = I EXIST. The name Yahweh is rooted in the verb “to be,” “he who is, and who was, and who is to come.” Thirty times in the Gospel of John, Jesus calls himself I AM, where we see God’s existence face to face.
None of us can define boundaries to space, time and number, and this is the reality of finite human existence. The only place in history where infinite Existence is defined, one that is greater than space, time and number, is in Yahweh Elohim, whose power is unlimited, whose nature is good.
- Second, the existence of God is essentially a moral question.
In Psalm 14, David says: “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ ” The Hebrew word for “fool” refers to the moral nature of Nabal’s name, a man who dealt with David treacherously, only to suffer a deadly heart attack. He was morally foolish to begin with, living apart from Yahweh Elohim, the One who had delivered Israel from slavery in Egypt. Today, the main reasons people deny God are a) broken trust due to the chosen absence of the biological father, or other family pain, b) hypocrisy in the church, and/or c) the existence of evil.
Thus, this debate focuses on the moral questions of truth and falsehood, good and evil, love and hate, life and death, freedom and slavery, beauty and corruption, and human sexuality.
- Third, the existence of God can be tested.
Intellectually, we know about cause and effect, and in tracing our humanity, the ecosphere and the universe back to the Hot Big Bang. But who or what pulled the trigger? In order for us to be persons, there must be a greater person prior to creation, and the only concept in history is the person of Yahweh Elohim.
Experientially, in an agnostic Unitarian setting at age eight, I was taught that miracles could not occur, that Genesis was a myth. But I was skeptical of such a reactionary skepticism. I wondered about the reality of space, time and number, and my existence. At age 14, I looked at the Milky Way, as a white paint stroke against a black canvas, on an invigoratingly cold, clear and moonless November night in the Housatonic Highlands. I pondered the existence of God, and he supernaturally showed up in a way where all my critical faculties were alive.
Biblically, the true and beautiful order of creation provides the basis for a positive and tested grasp of God’s nature, communication, human nature, human freedom, hard questions, human sexuality, science and the scientific method, verifiable history, covenantal law and unalienable rights.
- And fourth, apart from the existence of the God of the Bible, we have no basis for a healthy political order.
The unalienable rights to life, liberty and property, and hence the power to pursue happiness, are rooted uniquely as the gift of the Creator revealed in Genesis 1-2. Apart from this reality, all political order devolves into “might makes right.”
We have three choices: 1) unity without diversity in Allah’s nature; 2) diversity without unity in polytheism and secular constructs; or 3) diversity in service to unity in the nature of Yahweh Elohim, revealed to us in the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This biblical choice provides for the reality of checks and balances on power, as seen in the Law of Moses, the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.
The God of the Bible exists, we exist, and all reality confirms it.