Does God exist? Many people would answer yes, but some have never proved it to themselves. Here are four basic proofs that God exists.
Typical explanations people give for believing in God include:
- It’s what my parents believed.
- Believing in God gives meaning to life.
- It’s what my church teaches.
- It just makes sense.
But are these explanations all there is? Can you scientifically prove there is a God? Or do you just have to accept His existence on blind faith?
The answer is that you can prove there is a God—in the same way you prove anything—by answering three basic questions:
- Is it rational or logical?
- Does the physical evidence support it?
- Does it fit the evidence better than any alternative theory?
Proof 1: The origin of the universe—the First Cause
Until the beginning of the 20th century, it was generally thought that either the universe had always existed in a basically unchanged state or the universe was created at some time in the past and had remained much as we see it today. An explosion of scientific discoveries over the past 100 years has led to the conclusion that the universe did indeed have a beginning.
Scientific evidence indicates that the universe is expanding and will continue to expand indefinitely. Extrapolating backward, scientists came to the conclusion that at some point the universe must have been concentrated at a single point. The resulting big bang theory postulates that the universe began about 14 billion years ago with an unimaginable explosion in which space, time and all matter and energy were created.
This theory creates a dilemma for the atheist. How can something come from nothing? Logically, if the universe had a beginning, there must have been a first cause. Scientific evidence is uniformly consistent in demonstrating that everything that had a beginning had a cause. This is what scientists do—they search for causes.
So the question is this: What caused the creation of the universe? The characteristics of this first cause must include: unimaginable power, supreme intelligence, timelessness and nonmaterial composition.
Is there a better descriptive word for this first cause than “God”? The fact that creation requires a Creator is only one proof that God exists.
Proof 2: Design
A second proof of God also relates to creation, but it specifically addresses intelligence. Engineers and scientists who study and apply the laws of nature can be constantly amazed at the intricacies of the design of the universe. At all levels, from subatomic to astronomical, the design of the universe is obvious.
Who designed this marvelous universe? Who thought up photosynthesis—the process by which plants convert water and carbon dioxide into carbohydrates using sunlight as the source of energy and with the aid of chlorophyll? A byproduct of this process is oxygen. Without this process, there would be no food and no air to breathe.
Numerous such interrelationships in nature prove that the Creator is an intelligent Designer. Design requires a Designer—a supremely intelligent one: God.
Proof 3: Laws
A third proof of God relates to natural laws. All physical sciences are based on natural law. Scientists, in their investigations of the physical environment, seek to uncover the repeatable, unvarying principles that describe the existence and interactions of all matter, from the smallest particles within the atom to the relationships described in cosmology.
These natural laws are almost innumerable. They cover, for example, all the laws that govern the interaction of subatomic particles of all matter. They describe the laws and principles that determine all chemical reactions. Natural laws describe the functioning of all biological systems in all living things. These are just a few areas where natural laws exist.
Science begins by assuming that natural laws exist. The evidence of the big bang theory rests on the assumption that natural laws, such as the laws of thermodynamics and the law of gravity, have existed since the creation of the universe.
Where did these natural laws come from? Could they just have “happened” during the big bang? Laws require a Lawgiver.
Proof 4: Life
We now come to the question of life itself. What does science say about the creation of life? The answer to this question is a fourth proof of God. All scientific evidence points to the fact that life comes only from life.
The naturalistic claim is that the first one-cell organism was spontaneously generated. Yet scientists have no explanation as to how this could happen. Even the simplest known type of cell is so incredibly complex that to believe that the first cell “just happened” is an article of immense faith. There is no scientific evidence that life can be produced from nonlife.
So, if life comes only from life, what life was the first cause of life? Could it be anything but God?
Science has proposed an alternative to the existence of God—the theory of evolution. According to the theory, life began with a simple cell. Over millions of years, life-forms gradually increased in complexity and diversified until the variety of life we have today evolved.
This theory conveniently uses examples of changes within species (microevolution) to postulate that over a long period of time such changes can occur to create completely new species (macroevolution). However, there is no evidence that the large-scale differences we see in life today could have resulted from genetic mutations.
Actually, the very existence of the amazing genetic code is evidence of a supremely intelligent Creator!
Evolution’s unexplained challenges
The theory of evolution does not explain a number of issues. Can it explain the existence of genetic limits when attempts are made to cross different kinds of animals? What about the irreducible complexity of organs such as the eye? If only one of the many complex components of the eye evolved, there would be no vision. Consequently, there would be no evolutionary advantage for the process to continue.
Another issue is the lack of viability of transitional forms. How would a transitional form between a reptile and a bird survive if it lost its scales but had not yet evolved feathers?
Beyond that, evolution does not address the most fundamental question: Where did the first life-form come from?
Where did morality come from? And love?
Another failure of evolutionary theory is in explaining morality. All cultures have basic standards of morality—moral laws. Where did they come from?
Evolutionary theory would lead us to believe that altruistic behavior would be recognized as a positive attribute in mate selection. Yet we see just the opposite in the animal kingdom. The dominant male gets the female. Animals have no such sense of morality in the way humans do.
Science has no good explanation for the existence of morality. It has no satisfying explanation as to how love could have evolved. Morality doesn’t really fit evolutionary theory; however, it is rational to believe that there must be a source of moral law. For moral laws to exist, there must have been a Lawgiver—God.
God’s challenge to skeptics
The God of the Bible throws out a challenge to the skeptics: “Test all things; hold fast what is good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21). In another place, God inspired the apostle Paul to write: “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:20).
The Bible makes a clear case that God not only exists but His existence can be proven by what He created.
As scientists have come to a greater understanding of the universe we inhabit, the facts point more and more to a supreme being as the Creator of it all.
- Without God, the big bang theory implies that matter and energy came from nothing.
- Without God, science’s only explanation for the beginning of life is spontaneous generation.
- Without God, science cannot explain how complex organs, which are irreducibly complex, could have developed.
- Without God, science cannot explain the intricate design evident in every aspect of the universe, from subatomic to cosmic.
- Without God, science cannot explain how natural laws exist.
- Without God, science cannot explain the existence of moral and altruistic behavior.
In this article we have only scratched the surface of the proofs that God exists. For more depth on the proofs outlined here, as well as additional proofs of God, check out the links in the right column to other articles in this section.
However, proving God exists is only the first step. Once you are convinced that there is a God, there are fundamental questions you need to explore:
- How does God speak to us?
- Does God have a plan for all humanity?
- What does God expect of us?
- And can God teach you how to have a happy and fulfilled life?
We urge you to explore this website and your Bible for answers to these and other questions about God and your relationship with Him.