In Biology classes across America, the Bible is often mocked because it is seen as unscientific and ignorant. Genesis is explained as a fairy tale; evolution and the big bang are the theories put forward as the best explanation of our existence. Is this actually true, though? Do the Big Bang and Evolution explain our existence?
This past Wednesday night, Pastor Jason covered this question, explaining how the Big Bang points to a Creator and how evolution cannot be the way that life came about. Here is a quick summary of what he spoke on:
The Big Bang
The Big Bang is a theory that suggests that the Universe began at a certain point in time with a rapid expansion from a point of singularity. This theory is held in high esteem by the scientific community, but it does not give all of the answers. If there were no intelligent designer behind this cosmic expansion, it would have been impossible for it to produce all of the complexity that we see in the world. There are five things that cause us to believe that the big bang points to a creator, rather than suggesting that the Universe came about on its own. If we assume that there was no creator behind this incident, we must say these five things:
1. Nothing created something
Before the big bang occurred, nothing existed. We must ask, “who or what brought the something into existence?” It is inadequate to say that “nothing exploded and produced something.”
2. Death produced life
Death has never been observed to bring about life, but without God, that’s what we are forced to say about the beginning of the Universe.
3. Disorder produce order
The second law of thermodynamics states that things tend toward disorder, but proponents of an atheistic Big Bang must say that disorder produced order—chaos caused complexity.
4. Matter produced a mind
Random matter has never been observed to produce a mind, but that’s what we must assume without God.
5. Information without a mind
Whenever we see information, we know that there is a mind behind it. For example, if you see “Will You Marry Me?” written in the clouds, you know that it was written out by an airplane; it was not a random chance. Information is always communicated with a mind.
These five points show us that a Big Bang could not have happened without the intervention of an intelligent designer. To quote one of the physicist who came up with the theory of the big bang, Arno Penzias, “The best data we have concerning the Big Bang are exactly what I would have predicted had I nothing to go on but the five books of Moses, the Psalms, and the Bible as a whole”
Most people today blindly accept the idea that all life-forms came about by random evolutionary mutation, but there are several reasons to doubt that this could cause our existence as we know it.
Listed below are some assumptions that are made concerning evolution. These are all a far leap to believe:
1. Non-living things gave rise to living material, i.e., spontaneous generation occurred.
2. Spontaneous generation occurred only once.
3. Viruses, bacteria, plants and animals are interrelated.
4. Protozoa gave rise to the Metazoa
5. Various invertebrate phyla are interrelated.
6. Invertebrates gave rise to vertebrates
7. Within the vertebrates the fish gave rise to the amphibia, the amphibia to the reptiles, and the reptiles to the birds and mammals.
Because of these great assumptions, it makes more sense to say that life was produced by an intelligent mind—by God.
Christians base all of their beliefs on one book: the Bible. Secular culture mocks this reliance on Scripture, and many believe that the Bible is inaccurate and unreliable. How exactly can we know that the Bible is true?
This past Wednesday night, Pastor Jason continued our series called “Contend” by giving several reasons why we can believe the Bible. There are two ways to verify the truth of a document: external evidence and internal evidence. The Bible’s internal and external evidence can be summarized in two acronyms, “SAT” and “RPM.”
External Evidence — SAT’s
Though the Bible is not a science book, it is completely accurate any time that it makes scientific observations. For example, thousands of years before mankind discovered that the earth was round, Isaiah wrote that, “The Lord sits on the circle of the earth” (40:22). Leviticus 17:11 says that “the life of the flesh is in the blood,” signifying that blood is extremely important to the life of human beings and animals. However, even in the 1700’s doctors still drained people’s blood in order to cure them of sickness. It was this procedure that took the life of our first President, George Washington.
Because the Bible has spoken more accurately about science, even when the people of its day would not have agreed, we must conclude that the Bible was written by someone who knows more about nature than the rest of mankind.
The Bible has continually proven to be a reliable guide to discovering the remains of ancient civilizations. Nelson Glueck, a renowned Jewish archaeologist, stated that “No archaeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference.” For centuries, historians and archeologists doubted the existence of the Biblical Roman Governor, Pontius Pilate, until they discovered a seat in a coliseum with his name engraved on it. This discovery validated the historical accuracy of the New Testament, and there are literally thousands of similar examples.
While some people may attempt to argue against any evidence for the bible, nobody can argue against its power to change lives. Millions of people have been positively changed by the message of the gospel contained in the pages of Scripture.
Internal Evidence — RPM’s
Discovering if Jesus really did rise again from the dead is of utmost importance to knowing whether or not to believe the Bible. The entire story of redemption is contingent on the resurrection occurring; if it did not, Christianity is meaningless.
We can, by historical means, see that the resurrection is something that actually happened. One simple reasons is because of the disciples faith. Every single one of the disciples was tortured, and all but John were killed, for the belief that Jesus rose again from the dead. There is no reason that these 12 men would go through so much suffering if it were not true.
For more arguments for the resurrection, you can read one of these articles:
No other book has predicted the future as often and as accurately as the Bible. To give one example, Jesus claimed that the temple would be dismantle brick by brick, a prediction that many would have mocked at the time (Luke 21:5-7). Thirty years later, this very thing occurred when the Roman general Titus sieged Jerusalem and began to burn the temple. Once he saw that there was gold inside, he commanded his army to tear it down brick by brick, fulfilling exactly what Jesus said.
For a more thorough list of fulfilled Bible prophecies, you can read this article: http://www.reasons.org/articles/articles/fulfilled-prophecy-evidence-for-the-reliability-of-the-bible
Even though the Bible was written thousands of years ago, we can still know we have the original words in our Bible today. The New Testament is better preserved and has more documentation than any other book of antiquity; there is no comparison. Trusted documents, such as Plato or Aristotle’s writings, have less than 50 manuscripts to support the accuracy of our copies. The New Testament has 5600 copies, which show us that the New Testament has not changed.
Even with these short examples of why we can trust the Bible, it becomes clear that this was not a book merely written by man, but it has been inspired by God.
World famous Atheist Richard Dawkins wrote that “Faith is the great cop-out, the great excuse to evade the need to think and evaluate evidence. Faith is belief in spite of . . . the lack of evidence.”
This statement completely misses the point of what faith is. Faith is not belief instead of thinking; it is belief because of thinking. We have great reasons to believe that Christianity is true and that God exists, and it is our responsibility, as Christians, to know and be able to defend those reasons.
This past Wednesday night, Pastor Jason discussed the question, “Does God exist?” In our short time together, he gave three arguments for the existence of God: the Cosmological Argument, the Teleological Argument and the Biblical Argument. Here is quick, simplified summary of each:
1. The Cosmological Argument
This can be summarized in a three statement syllogism
1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause
2. The Universe began to exist
3. Therefore, the Universe has a cause
At one point in time, there was nothing. Nothing existed at all. Then, something came into existence. How did we get from Nothing to Something? This step would require a timeless, spaceless, immaterial mind to create something out of nothing and form the material Universe.
2. Teleological Argument
If you were walking on a beach and saw a watch in the sand, you would not imagine that it had formed over millions of years from sand particles. You would assume that someone designed and created it. It is the same thing with our Universe. The Universe displays a tremendous amount of complexity that can only be explained by the existence of a divine designer. Some examples of this can be found in what are called Anthropic Constants. These are fine details that are essential for life to exist on earth. If any of these 122 Anthropic Constants were changed at all, life could not exist.
1. The Oxygen levels on earth are at 21%, which is perfectly tuned for life to exist. If they were to be any lower, we would suffocate; if they were to be any higher, we would be highly combustable.
2. The gravitational force, or the law of universal gravitation, is finely tuned for the Universe to exist. Scientists have found that if it were altered by 0.0000000000000000000000001, the Universe could not survive.
There are a hundred more, and each of them demonstrates that this world was not a product of chance, but it was designed by God.
3. Biblical Argument
God has made himself known through Creation, Conscience and Christ. Creation reveals that there is a creator. Our conscience reveals that there is a moral law giver—a God who has written his law on our hearts. Christ reveals that God intervenes in our world and has shown his power by the resurrection. Our beliefs should be based on evidence, and a belief in God has a substantial amount of evidence. Christianity is not just wishful thinking or an ignorant “faith,” but it is based on clear evidence and a search for truth.
Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist by Norman Geisler
Article: Five Arguments for the Existence of God
Evidence for God: 50 Arguments for Faith from the Bible, History, Philosophy, and Science by Michael Licona and William A. Dembski
The truths of Christianity are attacked viciously in secular schools and mocked by many in our culture today. Universities teach that Jesus’ resurrection is a myth, that the world began without a Creator and that homosexuality is acceptable, and students often struggle to respond to these assertions. Instead of “being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks” (1 Peter 3:15), many Christians find themselves unable to withstand the constant objections to their faith.
At Activate, we are beginning a new series called “Contend,” which will aim to equip our students to stand up to those who oppose Christianity. Jude tells us “to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3), and this series will help us to do that. Every night we will have a message on a specific topic followed by a Q&A portion, where anyone can ask about what was said.
Not only will this be great time of learning for Christians, but it is a great opportunity to bring out skeptical or non-believing friends to hear answers to some of the most controversial and difficult questions.
Listed below are the dates of each topic that will be covered:
- May 1: Does God Exist?
- May 8: How can we know the Bible is true?
- May 15: Does the Big Bang and evolution explain our existence?
- May 22: Is homosexuality a sin?
- May 29: Why is there suffering?
- June 5: What about other religions? Drugs? Abortion?
- June 12: Is sex before marriage wrong?
We need to have answers for those who ask. We need to defend the truth against the lies of this world. We need to contend. Join us every Wednesday at 7pm in the Loft at Harvest Riverside.
“He must become greater; I must become less” (John 3:30).
The Bread of Life – Jesus gives satisfaction
“I am the bread of life; whoever comes to Me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in Me shall never thirst” (John 6:35).
The Light of the World – Jesus gives illumination
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12)
The Door – Jesus gives salvation
“I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture” (John 10:9).
The Good Shepherd – Jesus gives direction and protection
”I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:14-15).
The Resurrection and the Life – Jesus gives glorification
“I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in Me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26).
The Way, and the Truth, and the Life – Jesus gives reconciliation
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).
The Vine – Jesus gives sanctification
“I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in Me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
Jesus is greater than anyone or anything else. As the I AM, He claims superiority and supremacy over all things. Jesus gives us everything we need for this life and for eternal life. As Paul said, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 1:3). When you trust and treasure Jesus with all of your life, watch and see how the I AM changes who you are!
*Click below to hear the messages or read the study guide to He is Greater: The Claims of Christ
In our study of He is Greater: The Claims of Christ, we’ve learned how Jesus is greater than anyone or anything else. We have seen how Jesus is the I AM, who alone provides satisfaction, salvation, and sanctification. The “I AM” statements in the Gospel of John show us who Jesus is and what He does for those who believe in Him, and in this Gospel is also the most famous verse in all of Scripture, John 3:16. Even though you probably have it memorized, try reading it in light of the theme “Greater.” You’ll see that…
“God” – The greatest Lover
“So loved” – The greatest degree
“The world” – The greatest number
“That He gave” – The greatest act
“His only Son” – The greatest gift
“That whoever” – The greatest invitation
“Believes” – The greatest simplicity
“In Him” – The greatest Person
“Should not perish” – The greatest deliverance
“But” – The greatest difference
“Have” – The greatest certainty
“Eternal life” – The greatest possession
We see the greatness of God in one of the greatest passages of the Bible. And our response should be like those of Scripture:
“Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable” (Psalm 145:3).
“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and how inscrutable His ways! … For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:33, 36).