There will never be proof of God.
For if there is proof
...then where is faith?
If there is no faith
...then where is religion?
If there is no religion
...then where is god?
And what, afterall,
...is the point of god?
It is a common and favorite debating tactic of atheists to demand of the Christian proof that there is a god, evidence for a supreme being, something that will satisfy the rational, reasoning brain. There are even offers of monetary rewards for scientific evidence or proof of god’s existence:
The James Randi Educational Foundation has a One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge “to anyone who can show, under proper observing conditions, evidence of any paranormal, supernatural, or occult power or event.”
GodsReward.com offers $100,000 for proof God exists and has extensive details about what does and does not constitute scientific proof and details the claims that have been submitted thus far.
I thought I remembered a prominent atheist (Dawkins, Hitchens, Harris) had also offered a reward for god, but couldn't find the link or remember any more details and in the five minutes I spent looking for it, I came across a very different reward.
Aus. $3 million dollar reward offered for a live and uninjured specimen of the Thylacine or Tasmanian Tiger. It’s funny, I have a book on Australia, published in 1964, by LIFE (before it became the mega corporate media monster it is today: AOL Time LIFE Warner) that refers to the thylocine as the Tasmanian Wolf (through convergent evolution it has many canine-like attributes). But for the Aussies, because its hind quarters are tiger striped, they went with Tasmanian Tiger. Good ole Aussies. :)
Now where was I? Oh yes, proof of God! How did I get onto Aussie Tigers? That's right, because the reward for a Tassie Tiger is actually greater than the reward for proving god exists! *snerk* And I was talking about proof that god exists because of the juxtaposition between proof and faith.
What is faith? "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen"(Hebrews 11:1).
And why does the Bible say a person must have faith? But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. (Hebrews 11:6)
While looking for the Hebrews verse on faith, I came across these two articles discussing faith and the evidence for god.
The first: What is Faith? by Keith Sharp.
In his bit Keith asserts “Saving faith is not a blind acceptance of unprovable opinions. It is not based on feeling, emotion, or a "blind leap." It is conviction supported by evidence.”
So I’m thinking, hmmm, wonder what ole Keith has to say, what his evidence is, how convincing his conviction is? I pulled apart his article, was in the process of fisking it when I realized it was dull as dirt and could be summed up thusly...
Proof there is a God (according to Keith Sharp)
1- the universe
2- the Bible (which “not only tells me about God, it gives evidence to demonstrate that there is a God, that the Bible is the word of God, and that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.")
And I’m thinking oh come now Keith, ole boy! What specifically about the Bible proves all that? “Some of these powerful proofs are the harmony of the Scriptures, fulfilled prophecies both about ancient nations and about Christ, and the evidence Christ has been raised from the dead.
He got a different translation then I did.
So when an atheist says, "Prove there is a god." Keith replies, "Sure no problem. Look a tree! Look the Milky Way Galaxy! Look a cat! And check out this gnarly book divinely inspired by god himself." Uh huh. I guess I’ll be seeing everyone in church this Sunday. NOT! Unless it is to leaflet the cars with some atheist tracks from NormalBobSmith.com. Now that would be a good time!
The second article: Substance and Evidence: A Study on Faith by John Wright Follette.
My mind instantly turned that into John’s Right FullO’It- naughty Fiery! Obviously I'm approaching this one with an open mind! *snerk*
According to John, “There are three things which must be established and settled in any situation in which faith is to be exercised.”
Ok, good. Lists. Lists are good. They proceed logically.
“First, the object of our faith must be beyond our ability to achieve. If it were not so, faith would be unnecessary as human effort could accomplish the desired end. Natural impossibility is the atmosphere in which faith works.”
Right- so with faith, you want the impossible. Check. I want $1 million.
“Second, the unseen object of our faith must be hoped for through a yearning heart with a pure motive.”
As the driven snow, mate, as the driven snow! Of course in Minnesota we are often plagued by snirt so the purity part might be a bit tricky.
“And third, there must be a personal conviction that the object believed for is as real as if it was already attained.”
I know what $1 million is, and I believe with all my heart that it is real. Plus, I know exactly what I would do with it, oh please oh please!!!!!!
"Faith is that exercise of mind and soul, which has for its object things not seen, but hoped for. And instead of sinking under them due to their difficulty or uncertainty, it stands firmly under them and sustains their becoming reality.”
So I should start writing the checks now? Sounds to me like faith will drive you insane. It demands that you believe in that which is unreal and encourages you to act as if it is real.
My favorite quote from John concerns the faith it takes to walk on the water as Peter did. “We should never venture out upon the water until we have the divine "come" under our feet. We must listen for His voice, and once we have heard, we have substance upon which we can walk into the impossible.”
May you go forth with the divine “come” under your feet, may it be as a light upon your path.