Proof That God Exists

If you’ve never visited presuppositional apologist Sye TenBruggencate’s web page, then it’s a must that you do.  He provides an easy-to-understand interactive tool to fundamentally prove the existence of God through logic.  For a little while now, I’ve been interested in studying presuppositional apologetics so to strengthen my understanding of logic to be used in witnessing encounters.  I’ve been able to pick up things here and there (thanks to Chad Williams and Dustin Segers), and finding Sye’s website has helped me understand it more systematically.  I’m really eager to study this more in depth.

From the website, Sye states:

You have likely heard that it is impossible to prove that God exists. You have heard wrong. Not only can the existence of God be proven, denying the proof undermines rational thought. It is true that God does not need anyone, let alone this website, to prove His existence. The Bible teaches that the existence of God is so obvious that we are without excuse for denying Him. No one needs proof that God exists, I simply offer these 8 steps to the logical proof of God’s existence in addition to what you already know (and may be suppressing).

Whether you are an unbeliever or someone desiring to sharpen their understanding of the nature of laws  and how they are necessary to prove anything, then please do visit Sye’s website, Proof That God Exists.  If one doesn’t start with God, then they have no basis for rational thought unless they borrow from the Christian worldview, which states God is the author of truth, logic, mathematical laws, scientific laws, and moral laws .  You will find this basic proof very useful when engaging Atheists and/or moral relativists on the street and elsewhere.

You may also find the following from CARM helpful:  The Christian Worldview, the Atheist Worldview, and Logic.

On the Box hosted Sye as a guest on Episode 105 last week – check it out below as they discuss presuppositional apologetics:

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Comments
20 Responses to “Proof That God Exists”
  1. Me says:

    The only thing this “proves” is the invalidity of self-referential, circular “logic” to prove anything. Step eight? Give me a break…

  2. Me says:

    I guess if we replace the word “God” with the word “Thor,” we now have irrefutable proof of Thor’s existence, huh?

  3. The Judge says:

    The proof has some fairly serious flaws. If you don’t, for example, acknowledge that moral laws are absolute it breaks down. It offers no evidence that moral law is on the same footing as logical or mathematical law.What evidence is there that moral laws are absolute? The only reason too believe that moral laws are absolute is if you presuppose God–which isn’t helpful here because this is an attempt to prove God’s existence.

    • Hi Judge,

      Thanks for the comment. Actually, without acknowledging that moral laws are absolute you cannot account for morality at all because there would be no standard for which we can base our judgments. Deeper than this, without God’s existence, we couldn’t make sense or account for anything. So yes, I presuppose God. You presuppose He doesn’t exist, but you must borrow from the Christian worldview (logic) to even argue to the contrary.

      So, it’s not that the proof breaks down if you don’t acknowledge that moral laws are absolute, rather, your worldview breaks down with inconsistencies and contradictions if you suppress the truth that God exists as the absolute moral law giver.

  4. The judge says:

    I wasn’t clear. The actual proof breaks down. If you don’t agree with the author’s presumptions about morality he cannot go any further. He shouldn’t be ashamed, philosophers have been arguing this point for thousands of years. Absolute moral law is impossible without God–but it is cheating to turn around and try to use it to boot-strap a proof of God’s existence.

    I think you should use the Ontological argument, it is much more impressive.

    • Again, the proof doesn’t break down at all just because your worldview clouds your judgment of reality. Let’s use an example – please finish the sentence, “It is OK to rape and murder children when _____________.”

  5. The Judge says:

    God commands it.”

    That is another big problem with this attempted proof. Any proof of God that relies on morality being absolute has the dual problem of explaining how morality could be absolute without a God (which it clearly can’t) and how it could be absolute with a God who can change the rules at will(which undermines their absoluteness).

    Morality simply isn’t absolute in any meaningful sense. Just daring someone to disagree with various horribles isnt proof, it is a rhetorical move meant to intimidate someone into agreeing.

    So help me to understand. How do we demonstrate that moral truths are absolute?

    • Hi Judge,

      You said, “So help me to understand. How do we demonstrate that moral truths are absolute?”

      I believe I’ve done that – please fill in the blank from my previous comment. If you cannot, my point is well-proven, and more importantly, there is at least one moral absolute.

      • The Judge says:

        My response was that if God commands you to rape and murder a child (or any other act you want to imagine) then it is automatically moral ( hence morality isn’t absolute, it is simply a word for conduct approved by God).) If there is no God then morality is merely convention springing from various social relationships and therefore, again, not absolute.

        • Judge, who said God would command such a reprehensible thing? It would be against His very nature. You’re still not answering the question. Can you or can you not fill in the blank? I trust you cannot, but I would like confirmation from you.

  6. the Judge says:

    The issue is not if God would do such a thing, but if he could. Clearly, God can do what he wants. God could command a person to rape a child, or murder a child, or any other thing and it would be perfectly moral to do so. It would make no sense to say that “what God commands me to do is immoral.” Therefore, even presuposing God morality isn’t absolute, it is just how God prefers you act.

    Therefore…

    “It is OK to rape and murder children when God says to do so.

    Here is another way to fill in your blank. If there is no God and morality is therefore conventional then it would be perfectly moral to rape and murder a child if it was an accepted convention. For a large part of history it was perfectly moral for a man to marry a child an compel her to sleep with him. In fact, the whole idea that you can rape your wife is a fairly new thing. Further, in many societies it was and is legal to kill your wife for various honor killings, etc. Some remnets of which remain in Islam, etc. For example, in some Islamic areas you could marry a 10 year old, force her to sleep with you, and kill her if she dishonored you by sleeping with someone else, etc. These thing depend on various factors like literacy, affluence, which religion the group happens to believe in, etc. What is moral and immoral evolves over time which is why it can never be absolute.

    Therefore…

    “It is OK to rape and murder children when society says it is ok to do so.”

    And these are just a few. You could generate an endless parade of exceptions to your example.

    So we return to the begining. How can we demonstrate that moral law is abolute?

    • You begin with a false premise in that God can do anything He wants. Where do you get that information? The truth is, God cannot do anything that contradicts His nature, so He would never and could never command someone to commit a detestable act such as raping and murdering a child. God also cannot lie, contradict Himself, or overlook sin just to name a few things that God cannot do.

      Let’s get a little more personal on the matter. If you are married, or have a daughter, or have/had a loving relationship with your mother, and any of these three were raped and murdered, according to your worldview, you could not pass judgment on the criminal because there would be no absolute standard for which to do so. Furthermore, you could not make the claim that Hitler’s murder of 6 million Jews was wrong because the German society at the time believed it was morally acceptable. And if one day child molestation was legalized in America because society as a whole deemed it acceptable, you could not judge a man who molested your grandchildren.

      These are just a few examples showing the flaw of your worldview and why there must be moral absolutes. Without a moral Law Giver, society could not even function.

  7. the Judge says:

    Addressing your first point. Why do you believe that God could not order you to kill a child? What do you base this on? And let me ask you, is it only children that God is restrained from ordering you to rape or kill? Can he order you to rape a woman? Is is only women? Could he order you to kill a man?

    And again, although it may be fun to talk about what we don’t think God has the power to do, it is a red-herring. If he did so, whether he chooses to or not, it would automatically be moral. And if he later instructed you no to, that also would be moral. Therefore, morality based on God’s command is not absolute in any meaningful sense.

    Moving on to your next point. You are correct in saying that if there is no absolute morality then there is no way to say that any particular act is moraly wrong in the absolute sense. But that isn’t an argument, it is just two ways of saying the same thing. Basically, you are saying if things aren’t absolutely wrong then they aren’t absolutely wrong. Agreed.

    Saying that you wouldn’t be happy if something isn’t the case doesn’t make it so. We know that morality isn’t absolute because it changes depending on the circumstance. I have cited examples of how even your preferred horrible, the rape and murder of children, would be deemed a moral act depending on the time period and culture you find yourself in. And even if you could find an example of somthing that hasn’t yet been condoned by society, that in and of itself proves nothing.

    So here we go:

    1. If God exists, then morality is what he says it is. Therefore, if God changes the rules then what is moral changes. Therefore it isn’t absolute.

    2. If we don’t assume a God (as we can’t in this scenario because we are trying to prove God’s existence in part by saying that morality is absolute) then we are forced to acknowledge that morality is a function of where you find yourself in history and civilization. Therefore it isn’t absolute.

    • You did not answer my first question – where do you get the information that God can do anything He wants?

      How do I know God would not order me to kill a child or commit murder period? Because God said,

      You shall not murder. – Exodus 20:13

      Why could God never order me to rape a person? Because God said,

      The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” – Mark 12:31

      The reason why these things are absolute is because God does not change. The following verses address the rest of your comment, in particular your point 1:

      For I the LORD do not change… – Malachi 3:6

      Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. – Hebrews 13:8

      Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. – James 1:17

      God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it? – Numbers 23:19

      As to God’s Law, He says,

      The works of his hands are faithful and just;
      all his precepts are trustworthy;
      they are established forever and ever,
      to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness. – Psalm 111:7-8

      Therefore, because God does not change and His moral law is eternal, He could never command that which opposes His nature. This is why morality is absolute.

      The Lord loves righteousness and justice, which is why we can have hope people who rape and murder will be held accountable for their evil deeds on the day of judgment. The downside is, however, those who suppress the truth and disobey the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ will also face the judgment of God for every thought, word, and deed contrary to the holiness and righteousness of God. Every lie you’ve told, every lustful thought you’ve had, and every time you have not loved God with all of your heart or perfectly loved those you engage, these things will be the evidence against you in God’s Holy Courtroom.

      This means, judge, you will face the Holy Judge of Creation when you die, and should you die in your sins, you will face the same wrath of God the murderer and rapist face for all eternity. I do not want that for you, so please consider watching the following message. There is hope for you, judge, if you repent and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ to forgive you your sins against Him: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=UkCa4Xh70sM

  8. the Judge says:

    Good stuff. Now we are getting somewhere.

    1. We know there is a God because morality is absolute.
    2. How do we know it is absolute? Because the Bible tells me so.

    Not a foundation on which to build a logical proof of God’s existence.

    We have now returned to the flaw in this proof. The only way we can reach the conclusion that morality is truly absolute is if we presupose God’s existence.The whole idea of a logical proof of God’s existence is that you don’t have to begin with the presumption that he exists–that defeats the purpose.

    Again, look to the various ontological arguments. I personally don’t think it has ever been satisfactoraly answered. It is famous for stumping (at least temporarily) Bertrand Russell, arguably the formost logician of the early 20th century who said ” it is much easier to be persuaded that ontological arguments are no good than it is to say exactly what is wrong with them. “

    • Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. The reason we must presuppose God is that you cannot make sense of anything unless you do. Again, you must borrow from the Christian worldview to even argue your points. Man knows God exists, some just suppress the truth more than others. Here’s why:

      Romans 1:18-25 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,7 in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of rthe immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

      “24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.”

      You still have yet to answer my question as to where you get the information that God can do anything that would oppose His nature.

  9. The judge says:

    This is the whole issue:

    Do you agree that a proof cannot presuppose its conclusion as a premise?

    In answer to your question: The purpose in proposing that God could do what he wanted was to get you to acknowledge that your beliefs about morality assumed
    God–therefore the premise presupposed the conclusion.

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