The Most Important Question of All
“COULD there be a more important question in all of human existence than ‘Is there a God?’” asked geneticist Francis S. Collins. He makes a powerful point. If there is no God, then there is no life beyond the present one, no higher authority on moral issues.
The reason some people doubt that God exists is because many scientists do not believe in him. However, popular views can sometimes be very wrong, as the next article will show.
Regrettably, many of the world’s religions have added to the confusion by teaching things that contradict well-established scientific knowledge. A notable example is the unbiblical notion that God created the world in six 24-hour days a few thousand years ago.
Faced with conflicting theories and philosophies, many give up their search for the truth about God’s existence. But what could be more worthwhile—and of greater consequence—than finding a trustworthy answer to such a fundamental question? Of course, none of us have seen God, nor were we present when the universe and life came into existence. So whether we believe in God or not, our views involve a degree of faith. But what kind of faith?
True Faith Rests on Solid Evidence
Faith—at least in some measure—is an important part of our lives. We accept employment, expecting that we will get paid. We plant crops with the assurance that the seeds will sprout. We trust our friends. And we have confidence in the laws that govern the universe. This is an informed faith, for it is based on evidence. Likewise, faith that God exists rests on evidence.
At Hebrews 11:1, the Bible says: “Faith is . . . the evident demonstration of realities though not beheld.” Another version says: “Faith . . . makes us certain of realities we do not see.” (The New English Bible) To illustrate: You are walking along a beach when, suddenly, you feel the ground quake. Then you see the water rush out to sea. You recognize the significance of these phenomena and that they warn of a tsunami. In this case, the quake and the vanishing water together form an “evident demonstration” of the yet unseen reality, the approaching waves. Your informed faith, in turn, moves you to flee to high ground and safety.
Faith in God too should be an informed faith, a response to convincing evidence. Only then can God become an ‘unseen reality’ to you. Must you be a scientist to examine and weigh such evidence? Nobel laureate Vladimir Prelog acknowledged that even “winners of the Nobel Prize are not more competent about God, religion, and life after death than other people.”
An honest heart and a thirst for truth should move you to examine the evidence fairly and let that evidence lead you in the right direction. What evidence is available for examination?
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A farmer has faith that seeds will germinate and grow