Even if the laws of physics were unique, it doesn't follow that the physical universe itself is unique. There is nothing in present ideas about 'laws of initial conditions' remotely to suggest that their consistency with the laws of physics would imply uniqueness. Far from it. For example, the most promising candidate for a T. In fact, string theory allows a "cosmic landscape" of around different universes governed by the present laws of nature, so that it does nothing to render the observed values of the constants and quantities physically necessary.
The problem with this alternative is that the odds against the universe's being life-permitting are so incomprehensibly great that they cannot be reasonably faced. Even though there will be a huge number of life-permitting universes lying within the cosmic landscape, nevertheless the number of life-permitting worlds will be unfathomably tiny compared to the entire landscape, so that the existence of a life-permitting universe is fantastically improbable.
Students or laymen who blithely assert, "It could have happened by chance! They would never embrace such a hypothesis in any other area of their lives—for example, in order to explain how there came to be overnight a car in one's driveway. Some people have tried to escape this problem by claiming that we really shouldn't be surprised at the finely-tuned conditions of the universe, for if the universe were not fine-tuned, then we wouldn't be here to be surprised about it!
Given that we are here, we should expect the universe to be fine-tuned. But such reasoning is logically fallacious. We can show this by means of a parallel illustration. Imagine you're traveling abroad and are arrested on trumped-up drug charges and dragged in front of a firing squad of trained marksmen, all with rifles aimed at your heart, to be executed. You hear the command given: "Ready! And then you observe that you are still alive, that all of the trained marksmen missed! After all, if they hadn't all missed, then I wouldn't be here to be surprised about it!
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Given that I am here, I should expect them all to miss. You would immediately suspect that they all missed on purpose, that the whole thing was a set-up, engineered for some reason by someone. While you wouldn't be surprised that you don't observe that you are dead, you'd be very surprised, indeed, that you do observe that you are alive. In the same way, given the incredible improbability of the fine-tuning of the universe for intelligent life, it is reasonable to conclude that this is not due to chance, but to design.
In order to rescue the alternative of chance, its proponents have therefore been forced to adopt the hypothesis that there exists an infinite number of randomly ordered universes composing a sort of World Ensemble or multiverse of which our universe is but a part. Somewhere in this infinite World Ensemble finely-tuned universes will appear by chance alone, and we happen to be one such world.
First, there's no evidence that such a World Ensemble exists. No one knows if there are other worlds. Moreover, recall that Borde, Guth, and Vilenkin proved that any universe in a state of continuous cosmic expansion cannot be infinite in the past. Their theorem applies to the multiverse, too.
Therefore, since the past is finite, only a finite number of other worlds can have been generated by now, so that there's no guarantee that a finely-tuned world will have appeared in the ensemble. Second, if our universe is just a random member of an infinite World Ensemble, then it is overwhelmingly more probable that we should be observing a much different universe than what we in fact observe. Roger Penrose has calculated that it is inconceivably more probable that our solar system should suddenly form by the random collision of particles than that a finely-tuned universe should exist.
Penrose calls it "utter chicken feed" by comparison. Or again, if our universe were just a random member of a World Ensemble, then we ought to be observing highly extraordinary events, like horses' popping into and out of existence by random collisions, or perpetual motion machines, since such things are vastly more probable than all of nature's constants and quantities' falling by chance into the virtually infinitesimal life-permitting range.
Observable universes like those are much more plenteous in the World Ensemble than worlds like ours and, therefore, ought to be observed by us. Since we do not have such observations, that fact strongly disconfirms the multiverse hypothesis. On atheism, at least, it is therefore highly probable that there is no World Ensemble. So once again, the view that Christian theists have always held, that there is an intelligent designer of the universe, seems to make much more sense than the atheistic view that the universe just happens to be by chance fine-tuned to an incomprehensible precision for the existence of intelligent life.
If God does not exist, then objective moral values do not exist. To say that there are objective moral values is to say that something is right or wrong independently of whether anybody believes it to be so. It is to say, for example, that Nazi anti-Semitism was morally wrong, even though the Nazis who carried out the Holocaust thought that it was good; and it would still be wrong even if the Nazis had won World War II and succeeded in exterminating or brainwashing everybody who disagreed with them. And the claim is that in the absence of God, moral values are not objective in this sense.
For example, the late J. Mackie of Oxford University, one of the most influential atheists of our time, admitted: "If. Thus, we have a defensible argument from morality to the existence of a God. He wrote, "It is easy to explain this moral sense as a natural product of biological and social evolution. Morality is a biological adaptation no less than are hands and feet and teeth.
Moral Arguments for the Existence of God
Considered as a rationally justifiable set of claims about an objective something, ethics is illusory. I appreciate that when somebody says "love thy neighbor as thyself," they think they are referring above and beyond themselves. Nevertheless, such reference is truly without foundation. Morality is just an aid to survival and reproduction. And any deeper meaning is illusory. Friedrich Nietzsche, the great 19th century atheist who proclaimed the death of God, understood that the death of God meant the destruction of all meaning and value in life. But we must be very careful here.
The question here is not: "must we believe in God in order to live moral lives? Nor is the question: "Can we recognize objective moral values without believing in God? Rather the question is: "If God does not exist, do objective moral values exist? After all, if there is no God, then what's so special about human beings? They're just accidental by-products of nature which have evolved relatively recently on an infinitesimal speck of dust lost somewhere in a hostile and mindless universe and which are doomed to perish individually and collectively in a relatively short time.
On the atheistic view, some action, say, rape, may not be socially advantageous and so in the course of evolution has become taboo; but that does absolutely nothing to prove that rape is really wrong. On the atheistic view, apart from the social consequences, there's nothing really wrong with your raping someone.
But the problem is that objective values do exist, and deep down we all know it. There's no more reason to deny the objective reality of moral values than the objective reality of the physical world. The reasoning of Ruse at best proves only that our subjective perception of objective moral values has evolved. But if moral values are gradually discovered, not invented, then our gradual and fallible apprehension of the moral realm no more undermines the objective reality of that realm than our gradual, fallible perception of the physical world undermines the objectivity of that realm.
Most of us think that we do apprehend objective values. Actions like rape, torture, and child abuse aren't just socially unacceptable behavior—they're moral abominations. Some things are really wrong. Similarly love, equality, and self-sacrifice are really good. But if objective values cannot exist without God, and objective values do exist, then it follows logically and inescapably that God exists.
New Testament critics have reached something of a consensus that the historical Jesus came on the scene with an unprecedented sense of divine authority, the authority to stand and speak in God's place. That's why the Jewish leadership instigated his crucifixion for the charge of blasphemy. He claimed that in himself the Kingdom of God had come, and as visible demonstrations of this fact he carried out a ministry of miracles and exorcisms.
But the supreme confirmation of his claim was his resurrection from the dead. If Jesus did rise from the dead, then it would seem that we have a divine miracle on our hands and, thus, evidence for the existence of God. Now most people would probably think that the resurrection of Jesus is something you just accept on faith or not. But there are actually three established facts, recognized by the majority of New Testament historians today, which I believe are best explained by the resurrection of Jesus: His empty tomb, his post-mortem appearances and the origin of the disciples' belief in his resurrection.
Let's look briefly at each one of these. Fact 1: Jesus' tomb was found empty by a group of his women followers on Sunday morning. According to Jacob Kremer, an Austrian scholar who has specialized in the study of the resurrection, "by far most scholars hold firmly to the reliability of the biblical statements about the empty tomb. Van Daalen, it is extremely difficult to object to the empty tomb on historical grounds; those who deny it do so on the basis of theological or philosophical assumptions. Fact 2: On separate occasions different individuals and groups saw appearances of Jesus alive after his death.
Fact 3: The original disciples suddenly came to believe in the resurrection of Jesus despite having every predisposition to the contrary. Think of the situation the disciples faced following Jesus' crucifixion:. Their leader was dead, and Jewish Messianic expectations included no idea of a Messiah who, instead of triumphing over Israel's enemies, would be shamefully executed by them as a criminal.
Jewish beliefs about the afterlife precluded anyone's rising from the dead to glory and immortality before the general resurrection of the dead at the end of the world. Nevertheless, the original disciples suddenly came to believe so strongly that God had raised Jesus from the dead that they were willing to die for the truth of that belief.
Luke Johnson, a New Testament scholar at Emory University, states, "Some sort of powerful, transformative experience is required to generate the sort of movement earliest Christianity was. Wright, an eminent British scholar, concludes, "That is why, as an historian, I cannot explain the rise of early Christianity unless Jesus rose again, leaving an empty tomb behind him.
Attempts to explain away these three great facts—like the disciples stole the body or Jesus wasn't really dead—have been universally rejected by contemporary scholarship. Therefore, it seems to me, the Christian is amply justified in believing that Jesus rose from the dead and was who he claimed to be. But that entails that God exists. This isn't really an argument for God's existence; rather it's the claim that you can know God exists wholly apart from arguments simply by immediately experiencing him.
This was the way people in the Bible knew God, as professor John Hick explains:. God was known to them as a dynamic will interacting with their own wills, a sheer given reality, as inescapably to be reckoned with as destructive storm and life-giving sunshine. They did not think of God as an inferred entity but as an experienced reality. To them God was not. Philosophers call beliefs like this "properly basic beliefs. Other properly basic beliefs would be the belief in the reality of the past, the existence of the external world, and the presence of other minds like your own.
When you think about it, none of these beliefs can be proved.
Evidence for God’s Existence – Grad Resources
How could you prove that the world was not created five minutes ago with built-in appearances of age like food in our stomachs from the breakfasts we never really ate and memory traces in our brains of events we never really experienced? How could you prove that you are not a brain in a vat of chemicals being stimulated with electrodes by some mad scientist to believe that you are here listening to this lecture? How could you prove that other people are not really androids who exhibit all the external behavior of persons with minds, when in reality they are soulless, robot-like entities?
Although these sorts of beliefs are basic for us, that doesn't mean that they're arbitrary. Rather they are grounded in the sense that they're formed in the context of certain experiences. In the experiential context of seeing and feeling and hearing things, I naturally form the belief that there are certain physical objects which I am sensing. Thus, my basic beliefs are not arbitrary, but appropriately grounded in experience. There may be no way to prove such beliefs, and yet it is perfectly rational to hold them.
You'd have to be crazy to think that the world was created five minutes ago or to believe that you are a brain in a vat! Such beliefs are thus not merely basic, but properly basic. In the same way, belief in God is for those who seek Him a properly basic belief grounded in our experience of God. Now if this is right, then there's a danger that arguments for the existence of God could actually distract one's attention from God Himself. If you're sincerely seeking God, God will make His existence evident to you.
The Bible says, "draw near to God and he will draw near to you" James 4. We mustn't so concentrate on the proofs that we fail to hear the inner voice of God speaking to our heart. For those who listen, God becomes an immediate reality in their lives. These are only a part of the evidence for God's existence. Alvin Plantinga, one of the world's leading philosophers, has laid out two dozen or so arguments for God's existence. Therefore, I think that Christian theism is a plausible worldview which commends itself to the thoughtful consideration of every rational human being.
Isham, R. Penrose, and D. Sciama Oxford: Clarendon Press, , p. Knopf, , pp.
John Bowden Louisville, Kent. Does God Exist? William Lane Craig. Summary Does God exist? Here are five good reasons to think that God exists: God makes sense of the origin of the universe. God makes sense of the fine-tuning of the universe for intelligent life. God makes sense of objective moral values in the world.
Existence of God
God makes sense of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. God can be immediately known and experienced. After all, if God does not exist, there's no reason to be interested in God at all. Let me mention just three reasons why it makes a big difference whether God exists. Thus, if atheism is true, life is ultimately meaningless. Think of it! God makes sense of the origin of the universe Have you ever asked yourself where the universe came from?
This conclusion has been confirmed by remarkable discoveries in astronomy and astrophysics. Vilenkin pulls no punches: It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. We can summarize our argument thus far as follows: Whatever begins to exist has a cause. The universe began to exist.
Therefore, the universe has a cause.
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Given the truth of the two premises, the conclusion necessarily follows. This fine-tuning is of two sorts. The book, The Probability of God: A simple calculation that proves the ultimate truth, will be published later this month. Dr Unwin said he was interested in bridging the gap between science and religion. He argues that rather than being a theological issue, the question of God's existence is simply a matter of statistics. In many ways, this project was for me a journey home - a reconciliation of my faith and education. However, Graham Sharp, media relations director at William Hill, said there were technical problems with giving odds on the existence of God.
With the Loch Ness monster we require confirmation from the Natural History Museum to pay out, but who are we going to ask about God? The church would definitely confirm his existence. For this confirmation is needed from the Archbishop of Canterbury.