The Reality of God
Faith is vitally important and essential. In fact, we are told "But without faith it is impossible to please him…" (Heb. 11: 6). In the case of Jesus’ resurrection, the apostles and others were presented empirical evidence that Jesus had been triumphant over death. "…reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side," said Jesus to Thomas, "and be not faithless, but believing" (John 20: 27). Others observed tangible proof of Jesus overcoming death and hades (I Cor. 15: 4-9). Yet, the walk of the Christian is "by faith" (2 Cor. 5: 7). Man has not seen God or been able to examine him in the climate of a scientific laboratory. Notwithstanding, the reality of God is all around us if we would only look and discern. The fact of creation is indicative of a Creator. The Psalmist wrote:
"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge" (Ps. 19: 1, 2).
Some make the mistake of thinking that God and science are totally divorced and that the reality of God cannot be scientifically established. In this study, we shall examine scientific or empirical evidence as to the existence of God.
The innumerable stars. I recall when a boy, I would spend hours just gazing up into the heavens. I especially looked at the stars at night and wondered about the vastness of the universe. "How many stars are there," I would ask. God told Abram the following:
"And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them, and he said unto him, so shall thy seed be" (Gen. 15: 5).
God is the creator of the starry hosts and is so acquainted with his creation that he and he alone knows the number of the stars (Isa. 40: 17-26). In fact, not only does he know the number but he has named them.
"He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names. Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite" (Ps. 147: 4, 5).
Man could not appreciate what the Bible said about the stars until science produced the ability through powerful telescopes for man to explore the enormity of the universe. Yet, the Bible revealed such knowledge long before the telescope.
The fact of the earth being suspended. Science tells the story of man groping for knowledge mostly through the process of trial and error. It was not long ago that most in the scientific community held the view that the earth was flat or supported on some huge foundation. As is often the case, the Bible was far ahead of science. In about 1500 B. C. we read the following:
"He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, and hangeth the earth upon nothing" (Job 26: 7).
How could the man Job only through natural means have possessed such knowledge? The prophet Isaiah wrote of the "circle of the earth" (Isa. 40: 22). The spherical shape of the earth appears to be the idea. Even if we translate the Hebrew as "vault about the earth," the spherical (circular) shape of the earth is still suggested. The Hebrew word translated "circle" or "vault" appears in Genesis 13: 10 and is used to describe the surrounded (circular) plain of Jordon. The knowledge of the earth being suspended on nothing and circular in shape pre-dated science by many centuries and is only a rather relatively recent discovery. Such knowledge points to the reality of God.
The existence of springs in the sea. A fascinating science is oceanography. This is enticing because man is just now really making progress with the development of the ability to go down deep. Pertaining to the great Noachian flood we read:
"In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened" (Gen. 7: 11, cp. 8: 2).
A while back, I was watching a special documentary about the ocean and what modern science is learning. The particular segment of the documentary pertained to man now for the first time being able to explore great depths and the consequent discoveries. They showed species of fish about which they had no previous knowledge swimming on the bottoms of the great depths. They then focused their under water camera on the bottom and showed great crevices and rises. This they said were, "The fountains of the great deep." They went on to say, "These fountains of the great deep were broken up." The narrator appeared to be an atheist and yet he used wording straight out of the Bible! This was the first time that science had discovered the "fountains of the great deep," yet, the Bible spoke of such thousands of years anterior to this recent scientific finding.
The paths of the seas. Creation not only implies a Creator, but also shows that the Creator is a Being of order and system. When various facets of our universe are closely and scientifically considered, it becomes apparent that there is minute symmetry, harmony, and working. Look at our oceans and you would think that they are simply vast bodies of water, this is what man thought for centuries. However, there is so much more involved.
"The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth though the paths of the seas" (Ps. 8: 8).
The Psalmist had just mentioned the greatness of the Lord (vs. 1). The fact of man’s creation is also affirmed in the text, as well as the fact of God having created the "heavens," "moon," and "stars" (vs. 3-6). The oceans are not stagnant, but alive with movement and direction. When man was able to study the oceans (satellites orbiting the earth have made tremendous advancement in the study of the paths of the sea), some men have come to appreciate even more the fact that the Bible set forth the idea of paths in the sea long before science ever discovered such.
The hydrologic cycle. Again, our universe is intricate and continues to operate based on precise laws that were obviously set into place and motion at the beginning of creation. While the Bible identifies many of these matters, science takes time to make such discoveries. Job made a statement aeons ago that pre-dated science by centuries.
"He bindeth up the waters in his thick clouds; and the cloud is not rent under them….For he maketh small the drops of water: they pour down rain according to the vapour thereof; which the clouds do drop and distil upon man abundantly….Dost thou know the balanceings of the clouds, the wondrous works of him which is perfect in knowledge….Who hath divided a watercourse for the overflowing of waters, or a way for the lightning of thunder; To cause it to rain on the earth, where no man is; on the wilderness, wherein there is no man….Hath the rain a father? Or who hath begotten the drops of dew?" (Job 26: 8; 36: 27, 28; 37: 16; 38: 25-28).
How can the earth and system continue with just the right amount of water and distribution? The answer is seen in the above statements. Such did not just happen or evolve, such marvelous workings are indicative of the reality of God, the Intelligent Designer of the universe! (Ps. 135: 5-7.) The Wise Man made the following statement that is replete with profundity of thought, surpassing mere man of the time:
"The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits. All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again" (Eccl. 1: 6, 7).
All living things produce after their kind. Organic evolution is not of God and, in fact, it is not even scientific. If man evolved from a one cell ameba, where are all the multitudinous transitional forms that would obviously exist if such occurred? Man is man, a dog is a dog, and a cat is a cat, this is biblical and scientific. The order of the universe began and is maintained through the law that the Creator put in place at the inception. Consider the original creation:
"21: And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 22: And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. 23: And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. 24: And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. 25: And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good" (Gen. 1).
Such an account of creation is tenable and scientific. Man left to his own devices and imagination cannot come up with such an intelligent account. Hence, the reality of God is presupposed.
Laws of sanitation. Much of what we know as a result of medical science is relatively recent in origin. For instance, man was without a concept of germs and much of what we now accept as laws of sanitation. However, the ancient Book of Leviticus sets forth a basic concept of germs, contagion, and the consequent need of quarantined that it took man alone centuries to ever understand and appreciate. Consider some of this teaching regarding leprosy:
"44: Then the priest shall come and look, and, behold, if the plague be spread in the house, it is a fretting leprosy in the house: it is unclean. 45: And he shall break down the house, the stones of it, and the timber thereof, and all the morter of the house; and he shall carry them forth out of the city into an unclean place. 46: Moreover he that goeth into the house all the while that it is shut up shall be unclean until the even. 47: And he that lieth in the house shall wash his clothes; and he that eateth in the house shall wash his clothes" (Lev. 14).
Contemporary science had no understanding that could produce such instruction, but God knew.
Life is in the blood. Another fact that is now scientifically known is that life is in the blood. Yet, this truth was stated by God in Leviticus 17: 10-16. How could the passage so state, unless the Creator who made man and placed life in the blood knew? When we understand that life is in the blood, the statement made by Jesus regarding giving his blood takes on more meaning (Matt. 26: 28).
The law of entropy. The law of entropy is often termed the "second law of thermodynamics. It is the law that in an open system, all tends to decline. The universe is an open system, as opposed to a closed system. I have said that organic evolution is unscientific and the law of entropy proves it. Organic evolution is based on natural selection that results in improvement. The idea is everything moving toward perfection and sublimation. However, such is not correct because the universe is an open system. Rather than working toward perfection, the universe is in the process of decline, based on the law of entropy. The Bible taught the law of entropy many centuries ago.
"25: Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. 26: They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: 27: But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end" (Ps. 102: 25-27).
By Paul using the present tense in describing man’s state of perishing, he is stating the law of entropy (cp. Rom. 8: 18-23).
Intelligent reader, without God supplying the knowledge, Moses, Job, David, Solomon, and Paul could not have known what they did. The only way that we can understand the making of such revolutionary statements that pre-dated science by many centuries, is that God supplied the information. The Bible does claim to be from the All Wise Creator (2 Tim. 3: 16, 17). When one looks around, seeing the stars, the enormity of the universe and the order and complexity of nature, one sees the fact of God. When one considers the teaching of God’s Book, one observes the reality of God! Jesus said to Thomas after Thomas physically examined the resurrected Jesus, "Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed" (John 20: 29).