Our existence as humans is most certainly a cosmic accident if there is no personal Creator. We exist by chance, not by design or purpose. And, if this is an accurate accounting for our existence, several facts follow:
- All notions of ultimate meaning are based on wishful thinking and irrational fantasy.
- There is no ultimate morality; no right or wrong; no transcendent morality. Morals are simply matters of personal taste or societal opinion. The so-called problem of evil cannot be addressed and cannot (on rational grounds) really be called a problem.
- Death is both the irreversible cessation of organismic functioning and the irreversible loss of personhood. There is no hope of anything outside of this life.
Apart from the existence of a Creator, we exist by chance in a deterministic universe governed by raw natural selection. If, on the other hand, there is a Creator, a personal God who made us male and female in His own image, then at least three truths follow:
- Life has value, meaning and dignity beyond the limitation of human opinion.
- Personal identity, human freedom and responsibility become genuine markers of our existence. We have been endowed by our Creator with these qualities.
- The transcendent (which we intuitively recognize) elevates us out of the despair of human relativism and the limitations of human inquiry.
Statement of life:
In the beginning, when time itself began, God made the universe out of nothing. Among the planets, he created earth, its land and seas and all its creatures. As the climax of his creative activity, he made humans, male and female, in his own image. The godlikeness of humankind emerges as the story unfolds: men and women are rational and moral beings (able to understand and respond to God’s commands), responsible beings (exercising dominion over nature), social beings (with a capacity to love and be loved), and spiritual beings (finding their highest fulfillment in knowing and worshipping their Creator). Indeed, the Creator and his human creatures are depicted as walking and talking together in the garden. All this was the godlikeness which gave Adam and Eve their unique worth and dignity.
Three statements of truths in relation to belief in God:
- I believe in God as Creator of a good world (accounting for the goodness and beauty in the world) Genesis 1:1ff.
- I believe in God as Creator of humans in His image — male and female (accounting for the gender and marital structure of society) Genesis 1:26-28.
- I believe in the fall of humanity and the resulting curse on the earth (accounting for the moral structure—“you shall” – ”you shall not” and all the suffering and sorrow on the planet) Genesis 2, 3, 4; Romans 5:12.
“If a being like God exists, all of this astonishing fine-tuning, interrelated complexity, and so on isn’t shocking in the least. If no God-like being exists, then shock is thoroughly warranted. We can look at lots of other arguments—not just one—to reinforce and broaden our understanding of what may be behind our/the universe’s existence, human dignity and worth, the trustworthiness of our minds/reason, the existence of moral duties, the existence of beauty, and so on. Of course, much depends on our openness to considering whether something beyond our senses exists. The Big Bang offers one such clue that it does!” (Paul Copan)
Is it possible that people resist belief in God primarily because it threatens their desire for autonomy and self-sufficiency? Perhaps atheists would be more honest if they joined philosopher, Thomas Nagel in saying, “I hope there is no God.”