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Various World Views
Arguments for God’s Existence

Objections to God’s Existence


Arguments for God’s Existence

Everyone at some point wonders whether God exists. Among the reasons God fascinates us
is that “all men by nature desire to know” (Aristotle, M, I, 1), and knowing the greatest truth
commands our greatest desire. Consequently, as long as man desires to know, he will seek to
know the truth about God. Those who believe in one God who intervenes in the world have
proposed many arguments to demonstrate that such a God exists. Most of these arguments are
variations on a few types of arguments for God’s existence. This chapter will not serve as a
comprehensive survey of every argument but rather will concentrate on those classical
arguments that historically have the most compelling presentations: the cosmological argument,
the teleological argument, and the moral argument.1

I. Cosmological Argument
A. General Summary
There are two forms of the cosmological argument. One form argues for an Original Cause
that caused the universe to come to be. This is the “horizontal” approach of the cosmological
argument, better known as the Kalaam argument. Medieval Arab philosophers as well as St.
There are both classical arguments for God’s existence and experiential arguments. As the names suggest,
classical arguments are those which have considerable precedent in the history of philosophy while experiential
arguments are more recent formulations by existentialists that focus only on what is internal to man rather than
including what is external as well. There are four classical arguments: the cosmological argument, the teleological
argument, the ontological argument, and the moral argument. I have chosen to omit the ontological argument
because it does not prove anything about the existence of God but rather demonstrates certain verities about His
nature. Concerning the experiential arguments, their greatest contribution lies not in proving that God exists but
rather in persuading someone to know God once His existence has been proven.

Bonaventure presented and defended this view. The other form argues for an Operational Cause
that causes the universe to continue to be. This “vertical” form of the cosmological argument has
Thomas Aquinas as its chief historical proponent. Various contemporary philosophers defend
versions of both types of the argument.
The general form of the horizontal argument is as follows:
1. Every event that had a beginning had a cause.
2. The universe had a beginning.
3. Therefore, the universe had a Cause. (Geisler, ST1, 27)

The general form of the vertical argument is as follows:

1. Every effect has a cause.
2. The universe is an effect.
3. Therefore, the universe has a Cause. (Geisler, WA, 54)

B. Particular Arguments
1. Aristotle’s Argument for an Unmoved Mover
Aristotle understands reality in terms of what actually is (actuality) and what potentially
could be (potentiality). The movement from potentiality to actuality is (efficient) causality,
which something purely potential cannot perform on itself. In other words, something cannot
make itself exist. Therefore, something must exist which is not made to exist. Though Aristotle
believed that there was a plurality of uncaused, self-existent actualities, his reasoning is an
important first step that launched the thoughts of future philosophers concerning God.
The first principle or primary being is not movable either in itself or accidentally, but produces the primary
eternal and single movement. And since that which is moved must be moved by something, and the first
mover must be in itself unmovable, and eternal movement must be produced by something eternal and a
single movement be a single thing, and since we see that besides the simple spatial movement of the
universe, which we say the first and unmovable substance produces, there are other spatial movements—
those of the planets—which are eternal. . . each of these movements also must be caused by a substance
unmovable in itself and eternal. (Aristotle, Metaphysics, 12.8, 1073a24-34)
But the primary essence has not matter; for it is fulfillment. So the unmovable first mover is one both in
formula and in number; therefore also that which is moved always and continuously is one alone; therefore
there is one heaven alone. (Aristotle, Metaphysics, 12.8, 1074a35-38)

2. Anselm’s Arguments
Though better known for the ontological argument, Anselm did articulate a number of lesser-
known cosmological type arguments. These a posteriori arguments begin with existing things
and reason inductively to their cause, which he sees as God.
It follows, therefore, that all other goods are good through another being than that which they themselves
are, and this being alone is good through itself. Hence, this alone is supremely good, which is alone good
through itself. For it is supreme, in that it so surpasses other beings, that it is neither equaled nor excelled.
But that which is supremely good is also supremely great. There is, therefore, some one being which is
supremely good, and supremely great, that is, the highest of all existing beings. (Anselm, “M” in SABW,
chap. 1)
But whatever exists through another is less than that, through which all things are, and which alone exists

through itself. Therefore, that which exists through itself exists in the greatest degree of all things. There is,
then, some one being which alone exists in the greatest and highest degree of all. But that which is greatest
of all, and through which exists whatever is good or great, and, in short, whatever has any existence—that
must be supremely good, and supremely great, and the highest of all existing beings. (Anselm, “M” in
SABW, chap. 3)

3. Avicenna’s First Cause

A number of Muslim philosophers also argued for the existence of the theistic God.
Avicenna was one such philosopher. Central to Avicenna’s cosmological argument is the notion
that anything that comes into existence has a reason (meaning existential cause) for its existence.
In other words, a Necessary Being is existentially self-sufficient; it must exist.
Whatever has being must either have a reason for its being, or have no reason for it. If it has reason, then it
is contingent . . . . If on the other hand it has no reason for its being in any way whatsoever, then it is
necessary in its being. . . . A necessary being has no cause whatsoever. (Avicenna, AT, 25, 26)
Following these assumptions, Avicenna argues that a Necessary Being, or God, exists.
If the reason is also contingent, there is then a chain of contingents linked one to the other, and there is no
being at all; for this being which is the subject of our hypotheses cannot enter into being so long as it is not
preceded by an infinite succession of beings, which is absurd. Therefore contingent beings end in a
Necessary Being. (Avicenna, AT, 25)

4. Aquinas’ Five Ways to Prove God’s Existence

Probably the most famous of the classical cosmological arguments for God’s existence come
from Thomas Aquinas. In his massive Summa Theologica, Aquinas supplies five demonstrations,
or “ways,” of God’s existence, arguing from various effects we see in the world to their ultimate
Cause. These arguments illustrate the vertical form of the cosmological argument, which is that
God is the Present Cause sustaining the existence of all things in the world.

a. The First Way: Argument from Motion

The first and more manifest way is the argument from motion. It is certain, and evident to our senses, that
in the world some things are in motion. Now whatever is in motion is put in motion by another, for nothing
can be in motion except it is in potentiality to that towards which it is in motion; whereas a thing moves
inasmuch as it is in act. For motion is nothing else than the reduction of something from potentiality to
actuality. But nothing can be reduced from potentiality to actuality, except by something in a state of
actuality. Thus that which is actually hot, as fire, makes wood, which is potentially hot, to be actually hot,
and thereby moves and changes it. Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at once in actuality
and potentiality in the same respect, but only in different respects. For what is actually hot cannot
simultaneously be potentially hot; but it is simultaneously potentially cold. It is therefore impossible that in
the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved, i.e. that it should move
itself. Therefore, whatever is in motion must be put in motion by another. If that by which it is put in
motion be itself put in motion, then this also must needs be put in motion by another, and that by another
again. But this cannot go on to infinity, because then there would be no first mover, and, consequently, no
other mover; seeing that subsequent movers move only inasmuch as they are put in motion by the first
mover; as the staff moves only because it is put in motion by the hand. Therefore it is necessary to arrive at
a first mover, put in motion by no other; and this everyone understands to be God. (Aquinas, ST, Pt. 1Q. 2
Art. 3)

b. The Second Way: Argument from Efficient Causality
The second way is from the nature of the efficient cause. In the world of sense we find there is an order of
efficient causes. There is no case known (neither is it, indeed, possible) in which a thing is found to be the
efficient cause of itself; for so it would be prior to itself, which is impossible. Now in efficient causes it is
not possible to go on to infinity, because in all efficient causes following in order, the first is the cause of
the intermediate cause, and the intermediate is the cause of the ultimate cause, whether the intermediate
cause be several, or only one. Now to take away the cause is to take away the effect. Therefore, if there be
no first cause among efficient causes, there will be no ultimate, nor any intermediate cause. But if in
efficient causes it is possible to go on to infinity, there will be no first efficient cause, neither will there be
an ultimate effect, nor any intermediate efficient causes; all of which is plainly false. Therefore it is
necessary to admit a first efficient cause, to which everyone gives the name of God. (Aquinas, ST, 1.2.3)

c. The Third Way: Argument from Contingency

The third way is taken from possibility and necessity, and runs thus. We find in nature things that are
possible to be and not to be, since they are found to be generated, and to corrupt, and consequently, they
are possible to be and not to be. But it is impossible for these always to exist, for that which is possible not
to be at some time is not. Therefore, if everything is possible not to be, then at one time there could have
been nothing in existence. Now if this were true, even now there would be nothing in existence, because
that which does not exist only begins to exist by something already existing. Therefore, if at one time
nothing was in existence, it would have been impossible for anything to have begun to exist; and thus even
now nothing would be in existence—which is absurd. Therefore, not all beings are merely possible, but
there must exist something the existence of which is necessary. But every necessary thing either has its
necessity caused by another, or not. Now it is impossible to go on to infinity in necessary things which
have their necessity caused by another, as has been already proved in regard to efficient causes. Therefore
we cannot but postulate the existence of some being having of itself its own necessity, and not receiving it
from another, but rather causing in others their necessity. This all men speak of as God. (Aquinas, ST,

d. The Fourth Way: Argument from Goodness

The fourth way is taken from the gradation to be found in things. Among beings there are some more and
some less good, true, noble and the like. But "more" and "less" are predicated of different things, according
as they resemble in their different ways something which is the maximum, as a thing is said to be hotter
according as it more nearly resembles that which is hottest; so that there is something which is truest,
something best, something noblest and, consequently, something which is uttermost being; for those things
that are greatest in truth are greatest in being, as it is written in Metaph. ii. Now the maximum in any genus
is the cause of all in that genus; as fire, which is the maximum heat, is the cause of all hot things. Therefore
there must also be something which is to all beings the cause of their being, goodness, and every other
perfection; and this we call God. (Aquinas, ST, 1.2.3)

e. The Fifth Way: Argument from Final Causality

The fifth way is taken from the governance of the world. We see that things which lack intelligence, such
as natural bodies, act for an end, and this is evident from their acting always, or nearly always, in the same
way, so as to obtain the best result. Hence it is plain that not fortuitously, but designedly, do they achieve
their end. Now whatever lacks intelligence cannot move towards an end, unless it be directed by some
being endowed with knowledge and intelligence; as the arrow is shot to its mark by the archer. Therefore
some intelligent being exists by whom all natural things are directed to their end; and this being we call

God. (Aquinas, ST, 1.2.3)

5. Reichenbach’s Argument
A more recent formulation of the cosmological argument comes from Bruce Reichenbach,
who states his case for God in terms of contingency and necessity, which is similar to Aquinas’
Third Way. Central to Reichenbach’s argument is contingency. As he explains,
That which is contingent is dependent on something else for the explanation of its existence. But if an
infinite series of contingent beings is incapable of yielding this, we must appeal to the only remaining
alternative, namely that there exists a non-contingent (necessary) being which provides the sufficient
reason for any contingent being. (Reichenbach, CA, 18)
We may summarize the detailed argument as follows:
1. A contingent being exists.
This contingent being is caused either (1) by itself, or (2) by another. If it were caused by itself, it
would have to precede itself in existence, which is impossible.
2. Therefore, this contingent being (2) is caused by another, i.e. depends on something else for its
3. That which causes (provides the sufficient reason for) the existence of any contingent being must
be either (3) another contingent being, or (4) a non-contingent (necessary) being.
If 3, then this contingent cause must itself be caused by another, and so on to infinity.
4. Therefore, that which causes (provides the sufficient reason for) the existence of any contingent
being must be either (5) an infinite series of contingent beings, or (4) a necessary being.
5. An infinite series of contingent beings (5) is incapable of yielding a sufficient reason for the
existence of any being.
6. Therefore, a necessary being (4) exists. (Reichenbach, CA, 19-20)

6. Taylor’s Argument for God

Richard Taylor explains in his argument for God’s existence the absurdity of something
coming into existence from nothing. In his anecdotal manner, Taylor shows that something that
comes to be must come to be from something, not nothing. As he summarizes, “That no world
should ever exist at all is perfectly comprehensible and seems to express not the slightest
absurdity” (Taylor, “MG” as cited in Burrill,, CASO, 284).
Suppose you were strolling in the woods and, in addition to the sticks, stones, and other accustomed litter
of the forest floor, you one day came upon some quite unaccustomed object, something not quite like what
you had ever seen before and would never expect to find in such a place. Suppose, for example, that it is a
large ball, about your own height, perfectly and mysterious, certainly, but if one considers the matter, it is
no more inherently mysterious that such a thing should exist than that anything else should exist. If you
were quite accustomed to finding such objects of various sizes around you most of the time, but had never
seen an ordinary rock, then upon finding a large rock in the woods one day you would be just as puzzled
and mystified. This illustrates the fact that something that is mysterious ceases to seem so simply by its
accustomed presence. It is strange indeed, for example, that a world such as ours should exist; yet few men
are very often struck by this strangeness, but simply take it for granted. . . . Suppose, then, that you have
found this translucent ball and are mystified by it. Now whatever else you might wonder about it, there is
one thing you would hardly question; namely, that it did not appear there all by itself, that it owes its
existence to something. You might not have the remotest idea whence and how it came to be there, but you
would hardly doubt that there was an explanation. The idea that it might have come from nothing at all,
that it might without there being any explanation of its existence, is one that few people would consider
worthy of entertaining. . . . This illustrates a metaphysical belief that seems to be almost a part of reason

itself, even though few men ever think upon it; the belief, namely, that there is some explanation for the
existence of anything whatever, some reason why it should exist rather than not. The sheer nonexistence of
anything, which is not to be confused with the passing out of existence of something, never requires a
reason; but existence does.
If one were to look upon a barren plain and ask why there is not and never has been any large translucent
ball there, the natural response would be to ask why there should be; but if one finds such a ball, and
wonders why it is there, it is not quite so natural to ask why it should not be, as though existence should
simply be taken for granted.
Consider again the strange ball that we imagine has been found in the forest. Now we can hardly doubt that
there must be an explanation for the existence of such a thing, though we may have no notion what that
explanation is.
It matters not in the least where it happens to be, for our question is not how it happens to be there but how
it happens to exist at all.
If we now imagine the field to be annihilated, and in fact everything else as well to vanish into
nothingness, leaving only this ball to constitute the entire physical universe, then we cannot for a moment
suppose that its existence has thereby been explained, or the need of any explanation eliminated, or that its
existence is suddenly rendered self-explanatory.
Now if we suppose that the world - i.e., the totality of all things except God - contains within itself the
reason for its existence, we are supposing that it exists by its very nature, that is, that it is a necessary
being. . . This, however, is implausible, for we find nothing about the world or anything in it to suggest that
it exists by its own nature, and we do find, on the contrary, ever so many things to suggest that it does not.
For in the first place, anything which exists by its very nature must necessarily be eternal and
indestructible. It would be a self-contradiction to say of anything that it exist by its own nature, or is a
necessarily existing thing, and at the same time to say that it comes into being or passes away, or that it
could ever come into being or pass away.
In fact, everything in the world appears to be quite plainly the opposite, namely, something that not only
need not exist, but at some time or other, past or future or both does not in fact exist. Everything in the
world seems to have a finite duration, whether long or short.
Everything in the world is capable of perishing and nothing in it, however long it may already have existed
and however long it may yet remain, exists by its own nature, but depends instead upon something else.
It would seem, then, that the world . . . is contingent and thus dependent upon something other than itself
for its existence, if it depends upon anything at all.
If it does not exist by its own nature, then it, in turn, depends for its existence upon something else, and so
on. Now then, we can say either of two things; namely, (1) that the world depends for its existence upon
something else, which in turn depends on still another thing, this depending upon still another, ad
infinitum; or (2) that the world derives as existence from something that exists by its own nature and which
is accordingly eternal and imperishable, and is the creator of heaven and earth. The first of these
alternatives, however, is impossible, for it does not render a sufficient reason why anything should exist in
the first place. Instead of supplying a reason why any world should exist, it repeatedly begs of giving a
Ultimately, then it would seem that the world, . . . must depend upon something that is necessary and
imperishable, and which accordingly exists, not in dependence upon something else, but by its own nature
(Taylor, “MG” as cited in Burrill, CASO, 282-93).

7. Hackett’s Cosmological Argument

Following the Thomistic tradition of arguing for the existence of God based on First

Principles, Stuart Hackett’s argument for God’s existence begins with the Law of
Noncontradiction (which is a First Principle) and then shows why the existence of anything that
has come into being implies the existence of God, who made it come into being.
If I understand, for example, what the law of contradiction or the principle of causal connectedness means,
it will be clear that these principles retain there objective status and validity independently of particular
minds and objects, in the sense that the adequate propositional or judgmental expression of them would
remain true whether or not any finite minds and/or objects existed.
From this analysis, it follows that a cosmos or world order is logically possible and conceivable only
through the validity of those a priori principles of reason.
Now what follows from this, in general, is that there could be no world order, unless logically and
ontologically (but not temporally, of course) prior to that order there were also all those essences or natures
which make the existence of the determinate types of entities which compose that order actually possible
and logically conceivable—no metaphysically transcendent realm of essences, no world order (as clearly
there is one)!
If we reflect on those ultimate presuppositions, principles, or categories which make thought and existence
possible in general, it becomes reasonably clear that these principles are such that, while particular objects
like trees and stones could only exist in conformity with them, nevertheless the principles provide no
distinctive clue as to the positive nature of these objects and other analogous ones. But the situation is
strikingly different in the case of thought as a function of mind, for those ultimate principles of reason
constitute the very essence of the structure of mind in its capacity for thinking and consciousness. To be
mind is precisely to be structurally constituted through those interpretive principles and categories which
essentially characterize mind a priori, that is, logically prior to and independently of particular facts of
Whatever exists must have an adequate explanatory ground which accounts for its existence
and properties: “Nothing can exist unless it possesses an adequate explanatory ground.”
Any existing entity must be either contingent (and have an external cause) or necessary (and
be self-existent):
Now if the entity in question is contingent (that is dependent in its existence), then the adequate cause. . . of
its existence, nature, and relations, will be extraneous or external to the entity itself. On the other hand, if
the entity is self-existent and therefore self-explanatory, then that would mean that it contains the ground of
its existence in its own nature, so that both the fact that it exists and the properties that it possesses are
intrinsic to that nature.
Further, something, either contingent or necessary, exists, though the actual existence of
anything necessary is not here presupposed.
Such an entity would be precisely what I have previously defined as an absolutely necessary being—or, in
religious language, God, in one of his basic aspects, as God is construed in my understanding of theism.
Premise 1: If anything exists, an absolutely necessary and transcendent being exists.
Premise 2: Something (I, at least, as a thinker) exists. Conclusion: Therefore, an absolutely necessary
and transcendent being (i.e., God, as partly defined by theism) exists (Hackett, RCRC, 93-98).

8. Craig’s Kalaam Argument

Perhaps the most influential cosmological argument of the day is William Lane Craig’s
cosmological argument. This is perhaps the best example of the horizontal form of the
cosmological argument (sometimes called the Kalaam argument), which reasons that there must

be an original cause to the universe, and this cause is God. Craig summarizes his argument as
1. Everything that begins to exist had a cause of its existence.
2. The universe began to exist.
3. Therefore the universe had a cause of its existence. (Craig, TABBC, 4)

The key to the above syllogism is the second premise, and so the most attention needs to go
to this premise. By its nature, the notion that the universe began to exist requires by two kinds of
evidence: philosophical and scientific. First, the philosophical evidence shows that the universe
cannot cause itself to exist. Therefore, there must have been caused by something outside and
independent of the universe.

(1) Everything That Begins to Exist Had a Cause of its Existence

Applied to the universe, we are asking, Was the beginning of the universe caused or uncaused? In this
book I do not propose to construct an elaborate defense of this first premise. For the first premise is so
intuitively obvious, especially when applied to the universe, that probably no one in his right mind really
believes it to be false. Even Hume himself confessed that his academic denial of the principle’s
demonstrability could not eradicate his belief that it was nonetheless true. Indeed the idea that anything,
especially the whole universe, could pop into existence uncaused is so repugnant that most thinkers
intuitively recognize that the universe’s beginning to exist entirely uncaused out of nothing is incapable of
sincere affirmation. (Craig, TABBC, 57)
That the universe began to exist is true enough, but that it should begin to exist utterly uncaused out of
nothing is too incredible to be believed. (Craig, TABBC, 58)
At this point, Craig has an ally in Stuart Hackett. Hackett articulates a key ingredient to
Craig’s argument, namely, that in a series of causes, there must have been a beginning;
otherwise, there could not be the present causes we observe.
It would be analogous to writing a bank check to cover a debt and then writing another check to cover the
first and so on indefinitely without ever involving any actual monetary deposit to cover any of the checks--
just as, in such a case, it could be reasonably argued that no debt had actually been paid at all, so in the
case of contingent causes which must themselves in turn be construed as effects, it may, by parallel
reasoning, be argued that no causal explanation of anything has actually been provided at all. Checks, after
all, are only intermediate and not ultimate units of explanation in the context of causality. (Hackett, RCRC,
I see clearly that the actually infinite series, about which I am raising the intelligibility question, is certainly
not the sort of indefinitely extended series which mathematicians refer to as infinite. (Hackett, RCRC, 100)

(2) The Universe Began to Exist

In defending the notion that the universe began to exist, Craig first marshals the
philosophical reasons why there must be a beginning to the universe. Then, he presents a
weighty scientific case.

i. First Philosophical Argument

Our first argument in support of the premise that the universe began to exist is based upon the impossibility
of the existence of an actual infinite. We may present the argument in this way.
1. An actual infinite cannot exist.
2. An infinite temporal regress of events is an actual infinite.
3. Therefore an infinite temporal regress of events cannot exist.
It is usually alleged that this sort of argument has been invalidated by Cantor’s work on the actual infinite
and by subsequent developments in set theory. But this allegation seriously misconstrues the nature of both
Cantor’s system and modern set theory, for our argument does not contradict a single tenet of either. The
reason is this: Cantor’s system and set theory are concerned exclusively with the mathematical world,
whereas our argument concerns the real world. What I shall argue is that while the actual infinite may be a
fruitful and consistent concept in the mathematical realm, it cannot be translated from the mathematical
world into the real world, for this would involve counter-intuitive absurdities. (Craig, TABBC, 9)

ii. Second Philosophical Argument

We may now turn to our second philosophical argument in support of the premise that the universe began
to exist, the argument from the impossibility of the formation of an actual infinite by successive addition.
The argument may be exhibited in this way:
1. The temporal series of events is a collection formed by successive addition.
2. A collection formed by successive addition cannot be an actual infinite.
3. Therefore the temporal series of events cannot be an actual infinite.
The collection in the first premise, . . . is not a collection whose members all coexist. Rather it is a
collection that is instantiated sequentially or successively in time, one event following upon the heels of
another. Secondly, nor is the series formed by subtraction or division but by addition of one element after
another. (Craig, TABBC, 30-31)

(I) The Second Premise in the Second Philosophical Argument

Sometimes this is described as the impossibility of counting to infinity. For each new element added to the
collection can be counted as it is added. It is important to understand exactly why it is impossible to form
an actual infinite by successive addition. The reason is that for every element one adds, one can always add
one more. Therefore, one can never arrive at infinity. (Craig, TABBC, 31)
We may now return to a consideration of our first premise, that everything that begins to exist has a cause
of its existence. The phrase ‘cause of existence’ needs clarification. Here I do not mean sustaining or
conserving cause, but creating cause. (Craig, TABBC, 57)
Kreeft echoes Craig’s point here with an observation.
Can an infinite task ever be done or completed? If, in order to reach a certain end, infinitely many steps had
to precede it, could the end ever be reached? Of course not - not even in an infinite time. For an infinite
time would be unending, just as the steps would be. In other words, no end would ever be reached. The
task would - could - never be completed. (Kreeft, HCA, 59)

(II) Support for The Beginning of the Universe Via The Big Bang
At this point, the second type of evidence, namely, the scientific evidence, becomes useful.
Modern cosmology posits a beginning to the universe based on physical findings. Astrophysicist

Hugh Ross provides some insight that backs Craig’s claim that the universe came to be.
The triumph of special relativity gave Einstein the boldness to extend his theory beyond velocity effects
and on to acceleration effects between observers. The results were the ten equations of general relativity.
Subtracting one set of these equations from another yielded yet another equation, whose solution led to
another surprising result that everything in the universe is simultaneously expanding and decelerating. The
only physical phenomenon in which expansion and deceleration occur at the same time is an explosion. But
if the universe is the aftermath of an explosion, then sometime in the past it must have had a beginning.
There must have been a moment at which the explosion began. If it had a beginning, then through the
principle of cause and effect this beginning implies the existence of a Beginner.
Confronted with the evidence that the galaxies are moving away from one another, “Einstein gave
grudging acceptance to ‘the necessity for a beginning’ and to ‘the presence of a superior reasoning power.”
(Ross, “AEPTG” as cited in Moreland, CH, 145)
No theory of physics has been tested as rigorously and as comprehensively as general relativity. Because
general relativity has passed all its tests, we can be confident in the conclusions. . . It gives us a remarkable
degree of certainty that the biblical doctrine of creation and the Creator is true. Our faith is and will remain
securely rooted in factual reality. (Ross, “SN,” 1, 3)
Renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking explains how his own research and Hubble’s
discoveries solidified Einstein’s conclusions about the beginning of the universe.
But in 1929, Edwin Hubble made the landmark observation that wherever you look, distant galaxies are
moving. . . . Hubble’s observation suggested that there was a time, called the big bang, when the universe
was infinitesimally small and infinitely dense.
The final result was a joint paper by Penrose and myself in 1970, which at last proved that there must have
been a big bang singularity provided only that general relativity is correct and the universe contains as
much matter as we observe. (Hawking, BHT, 8, 50)
Astronomer Robert Jastrow explains that the discovery of cosmic background radiation also
confirms the universe had a beginning. This disproves the Steady State Theory, which says the
universe is expanding while its average density remains constant.
In 1965 Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson of the Bell Laboratories discovered that the earth is bathed in a
faint glow of radiation coming form every direction in the heavens. The measurements showed that the
earth itself could not be the origin of this radiation, nor could the radiation come from the direction of the
moon, the sun, or any other particular object in the sky. The entire Universe seemed to be the source.
No explanation other than the Big Bang has been found for the fireball radiation. The clincher, which has
convinced almost the last doubting Thomas, is that the radiation discovered by Penzias and Wilson has
exactly the pattern of wavelengths expected for the light and heat produced in a great explosion. Supporters
of the Steady State theory have tried desperately to find an alternative explanation, but they have failed. At
the present time, the Big Bang theory has no competitors. (Jastrow, GA, 14-16)

(III) The Universe Is Not Static

Jastrow continues to support Craig’s claim that the universe had a beginning based on the red
shift of the galaxies that Edwin Hubble discovered in the early twentieth century. (The red shift
is a reading of electromagnetism indicating that the observed entity in the universe is moving
away from the point of observation.) The fact that the universe is expanding implies that it was
once denser and more compact – facts that support the beginning of the universe, since what is
flying apart must have a cause for its moving apart, and the evidence shows that this cause is the
Big Bang.

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He [Einstein] studied Hubble’s plates, looked through his telescope, and announced himself convinced. He
said, ‘New observations by Hubble and Humanson concerning the red shift of light in distant nebulae make
it appear likely that the general structure of the Universe is not static.’ (Jastrow, GA, 48)

(3) Conclusion: the Universe Had a Cause of its Existence

Based on philosophical and scientific findings by both theists and nontheists (like Hawking
and Jastrow), the universe does have a beginning, and this points back to its cause, which is God.
We conclude, therefore, that the universe has a cause of its existence. We ought to ponder long and hard
over this truly remarkable conclusion, for it means that transcending the entire universe there exists a cause
which brought the universe into being ex nihilo. If our discussion has been more than a mere academic
exercise, this conclusion ought to stagger us, ought to fill us with a sense of awe and wonder at the
knowledge that our whole universe was caused to exist by something beyond it and greater than it. For it is
no secret that one of the most important conceptions of what theists mean by ‘God’ is Creator of heaven
and earth. (Craig, TABBC, 64-65)

9. Geisler’s Cosmological Argument

Another form of the vertical cosmological argument comes from philosopher Norman
Geisler. Of particular note is the beginning of the argument, which states in personal terms that
some things exist. Aquinas and others assumed this to be true, but in the contemporary scene,
philosophers do not universally agree upon such a common sense notion. Because “I” exists,
Geisler argues that God exists.

1. Some things undeniably exist (e.g., I cannot deny my own existence).

2. My nonexistence is possible.
3. Whatever has the possibility not to exist is currently caused to exist by another.
4. There cannot be an infinite regress of current causes of existence.
5. Therefore, a first uncaused cause of my current existence exists.
6. This uncaused cause must be infinite, unchanging, all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-perfect.
7. This infinitely perfect Being is appropriately called “God.”
8. Therefore, God exists.
9. This God who exists is identical to the God described in the Christian Scriptures.
10. Therefore, the God described in the Bible exists. (Geisler, CA, 238-39)

10. Kreeft’s Argument from Change

Peter Kreeft applies Aquinas’ First Way using the language of change and constancy.
Because things change, the Cause of change must reside independently of the change. Since
existential self-causation is impossible, there must be an Ultimate Cause, who is God.
1. Nothing can give itself what it does not have, and the changing thing cannot have now, already,
what it will come to have then. The result of change cannot actually exist before the change. The
changing thing begins with only the potential to change, but it needs to be acted on by other things
outside of that potential is to be made actual. Otherwise, it cannot change. . . .
2. Nothing changes itself. Apparently self-moving things, like animal bodies, are moved by desire or
will - something other than mere molecules. And when the animal or human dies, the molecules
remain, but the body no longer moves because the desire or will is no longer present to move it. . .

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3. The universe is the sum total of all these moving things, however many there are. The whole
universe is in the process of change. But we have already seen that change in any being requires
an outside force to actualize it. Therefore, there is some force outside (in addition to) the universe,
some real being transcendent to the universe. This is one of the things meant by ‘God.’ (Kreeft,
HCA, 50-51).

Briefly, if there is nothing outside the material universe, then there is nothing that can cause the universe to
change. But it does change. Therefore, there must be something in addition to the material universe. But
the universe is the sum total of all matter, space and time. These three things depend on each other.
Therefore this being outside the universe is outside matter, space and time. It is not a changing thing; it is
the unchanging Source of change. (Kreeft, HCA, 50-51)

II. Teleological Argument

The teleological argument for the existence of God argues that the teleology, or purpose
evident in things, points to a Cause able to give them such purpose. Stated another way, the
design of the universe and the things in it argue for a grand Designer, for design indicating
intelligence cannot occur without an intelligent Designer. Norman Geisler states the argument in
its most basic form.
1. Every design has a designer.
2. The universe manifests design.
3. Therefore, the universe has a designer. (Geisler, WA, 54)

1. Paley’s Watchmaker
William Paley’s formulation of the argument is the most famous in the modern era. Although
Aquinas’ Fifth Way is essentially teleological, the teleological argument found its prominent
application in the modern age since it utilizes many scientific findings. In his initial argument,
Paley speaks plainly of the sense it makes to believe that a watch found in the forest has a
watchmaker than to believe that it was assembled by natural causes.

a. Initial Argument
In crossing a heath, suppose I pitched my foot against a stone, and were asked how the stone came to be
there, I might possible answer, that, for anything I knew to the contrary, it had lain there for ever; nor
would it, perhaps, be very easy to show the absurdity of this answer. But suppose I found a watch upon the
ground, and it should be inquired how the watch happened to be in that place, I should hardly think of the
answer which I had before given - that, . . . the watch might have always been there. Yet, why should not
this answer serve for the watch as well as for the stone? Why is it not as admissible in the second case as in
the first? For this reason, and for no other, viz., that, when we come to inspect the watch, we perceive
(what we could not discover in the stone) that its several parts are framed and put together for a purpose . .
. This mechanism being observed . . . the inference, we think, is inevitable, that the watch must have had a
maker; that there must have existed, at some time, and at some place or other, an artificer or artificers who
formed it for the purpose which we find it actually to answer; who comprehended its construction, and
designed its use. . . . There cannot be design without a designer; contrivance without a contriver; order
without choice; arrangement without anything capable of arranging; subserviency and relation to a purpose
without that which could intend a purpose; means suitable to an end, and executing their office in
accomplishing that end, without the end ever having been contemplated or the means accommodated to it
(Paley, NT, 3-4, 8-9).

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In reflecting on the argument, Paley notes that thinking about what is reasonable to believe
about making a watch reveals the answer.
. . . Nor, fourthly, would any man in his senses think the existence of the watch, with its various machinery,
accounted for, by being told that it was one out of possible combinations of material forms.
Nor, fifthly, would it yield his inquiry more satisfaction to be answered, that there existed in things a
principle of order, which had disposed the parts of the watch into their present form and situation. He never
knew a watch made by the principle of order; nor can he even form to himself and idea of what is meant by
a principle of order, distinct from the intelligence of the watchmaker.
The conclusion which the . . .examination of the watch, of its works, construction, and movement,
suggested, was, that it must have had, for the cause and author of that construction, an artificer, who
understood its mechanism, and designed its use. (Paley, NT, as cited in Burrill, CASO, 169)
Every indication of contrivance, every manifestation of design, which existed in the watch, exists in the
works of nature; with the difference, on the side of nature, of being greater and more, and that in a degree
which exceeds all computations. (Paley, NT as cited in Hick, EG, 103)
Richard Swinburne comments that the order of the world is not merely a subjective
perception but an objective reality. Rather than explaining metaphysics with epistemology, as
most modern philosophy attempts to do, Swinburne reminds us that metaphysics is the basis of
epistemology. Stated another way, we see order in the world rather than, as Kant would say,
seeing how our mind organizes information from a world we can never actually know. This is an
important point, because it argues that the order in nature is not merely what someone
subjectively and haphazardly wants it to be, but rather that the world itself is an orderly system
that can best be accounted for by an Intelligent Designer.
The theist’s starting-point is not that we perceive order rather than disorder, but that order rather than
disorder is there. Maybe only if order is there can we know what is there, but that makes what is there no
less extraordinary and in need of explanation.
The very success of science in showing us how deeply orderly the natural world is provides strong grounds
for believing that there is an even deeper cause of that order.
I suggest that the order of the world is evidence of the existence of God . . . because its occurrence would
be very improbable a priori. (Swinburne, EG, 67, 68, 147)

b. Updated Argument
Norman Geisler provides a refinement of the teleological argument in the same style as
Paley. He uses the example of seeing Mount Rushmore and pondering its cause. In his argument,
Geisler says that only an intelligent cause can produce effects that display intelligent design. It is
unreasonable to conclude that the faces carved in the side of Mount Rushmore came about by
natural causes because of the nature of the features themselves as well as the inadequacy of any
nonintelligent explanation to satisfy.
In crossing a valley, suppose I come upon a round stratified stone and were asked how it came to be such, I
might plausibly answer that it was once laid down by water in layers which later solidified by chemical
action. One day it broke from a larger section of rock and was subsequently rounded by the natural
erosional processes of tumbling in water. Suppose then, upon walking further, I come upon Mount
Rushmore where the forms of four human faces appear on a granite cliff. Even if I knew nothing about the
origin of the faces, would I not come immediately to believe it was an intelligent production and not the
result of natural processes of erosion?

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Yet why should a natural cause serve for the stone but not for the faces? For this reason, namely, that when
we come to inspect the faces on the mountain we perceive-what we could not discover in the stone-that
they manifest intelligent contrivance, that they convey specifically complex information. The stone has
redundant patterns or strata easily explainable by the observed natural process of sedimentation. The faces,
however, have specially formed features, not merely repeated lines. The stone has rounded features like
those we observe to result from natural erosion. The faces, on the other hand, have sharply defined features
contrary to those made by erosion. In fact, the faces resemble things known to be made by intelligent
artisans. These differences being observed, we would rightly conclude there must have existed at some
time and at some place or other some intelligence that formed them.

Nor would it, I apprehend, weaken the conclusion if we had never seen such a face being chiseled in
granite, that we had never known an artisan capable of making one, or that we were wholly incapable of
executing such a piece of workmanship ourselves. All this is no more than what is true of some lost art or
of some of the more curious productions of modern technology.

Neither, secondly, would it invalidate our conclusion that upon closer examination of the faces they turn
out to be imperfectly formed. It is not necessary that a representation be perfect in order to show it was

Nor, thirdly would it bring any uncertainty in the argument if we were not able to recognize the identity of
the faces. Even if we had never known of any such person portrayed, we would still conclude it took
intelligence to produce them.

Nor, fourthly would any man in his senses think the existence of the faces on the rock was accounted for
by being told that they were one out of many possible combinations or forms rocks may take, and that this
configuration might be exhibited as well as a different structure.

Nor, fifthly, would it yield our inquiry more satisfaction to be answered that there exists in granite a law or
principle of order which had disposed it toward forming facial features. We never knew a sculpture made
by such a principle of order, nor can we even form an idea of what is meant by such a principle of order
distinct from intelligence.

Sixthly, we would be surprised to hear that configurations like this on a mountainside were not proof of
intelligent creation but were only to induce the mind to think so.

Seventhly, we would be not less surprised to be informed that the faces

Nor, eighthly, would it change our conclusion were we to discover that certain natural objects or powers
were utilized in producing the faces. Still the managing of these forces, the pointing and directing them to
form such specific faces, demands intelligence.

Neither, ninthly, would it make the slightest difference in our conclusion were we to discover these natural
laws were set up by some intelligent being. For nothing is added to the power of natural laws by positing
an original designer for them. Designed or not, the natural powers of wind and rain erosion

Even the principle of “natural selection” never produces an entirely new form of life (see chap. 7). Natural
selection is a principle known to be helpful in the conservation of existing organisms, but not in the
production of totally new ones. Darwinians admit that the famous peppered-moth “experiments beautifully
demonstrate natural selection--or survival of the fittest--in action. But they do not show evolution in
progress. For however the populations may alter in their content of light, intermediate, or dark forms, all
the moths remain from beginning to end biston betularia.” L. Harrison Matthews, “Introduction,” Charles
Darwin, Origin of Species (London: Dent, 1971), p. xi.
Nor, tenthly, would it change the matter were we to discover that behind the forehead of a stone face was a

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computer capable of reproducing other faces on nearby cliffs by laser beams. This would only enhance our
respect for the intelligence which designed such a computer.

And, furthermore, were we to find that this computer was designed by another computer we would still not
give up our belief in an intelligent cause. In fact, we would have an even greater admiration for the
intelligence it takes to create computers which can also create.

Further, would we not consider it strange if anyone suggested there was no need for an intelligent cause
because there might be an infinite regress of computers designing computers? We know that increasing the
number of computers in the series does not diminish the need for intelligence to program the whole series.

Neither would we allow any limitation on our conclusion (that it takes intelligence to create such specific
and complex information) by the claim that this principle applies only to events of the near past but not the
most remote past. For what is remote to us was near to those remote from us. (Geisler, OS, 159-61).

2. Hick’s Argument
John Hick, a noted religious pluralist, has argued that the an Intelligent Designer is self-
evident because an ordered world points to an Orderer of the world as its cause.
As conscious minds we can accept the existence of purposive intelligence as an ultimate fact, neither
requiring nor permitting explanation in terms of anything more ultimate than itself. . . . As minds, we can
rest in the thought of an eternal and infinite self-existent Mind behind the contingent phenomena of a
physical universe within which our own finite minds have emerged. . . . Hence it is both logically
permissible and a very natural view that if the existence of the universe, as an ordered cosmos, is ultimately
explicable or intelligible it must be so in virtue of its dependence upon an eternal self-existent reality which
is of the same order as conscious mind. (Hick, AEG, 50)

3. Kreeft’s Teleological Argument

Most of the teleological arguments up to this point have argued for an Intelligent Designer
required by an orderly universe. Kreeft explores what a denial of an Intelligent Designer implies
for the order of the universe as well as the reasonableness of accepting such a proposition.
If all this order is not in some way the product of intelligent design - then what? Obviously, it ‘just
happened.’ Things just fell out that way ‘by chance.’ Alternatively, if all this order is not the product of
blind, purposeless forces, then it has resulted from some kind of purpose. That purpose can only be
intelligent design. So the second stands. It is of course the third that is crucial. Ultimately, nonbelievers tell
us, it is indeed by chance and not by any design that the universe of our experience exists the way it does.
It just happens to have this order, and the burden of proof is on believers to demonstrate why this could not
be so by chance alone. (Kreeft, HCA, 55-56)

4. Argument from Information

In essence, the argument from information is an evidential support for the teleological
argument. Because information by its nature is communication from one intelligence to another,
any information found in the universe argues for an intelligent origin. DNA and SETI (the
Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) assume that information discovered implies an
Intelligent Designer.

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a. DNA Contains a Complex Message
Charles Thaxton and William Dembski write about the complexity of DNA with regard to
the amount of specified information just one strand contains. Molecular biology, they argue,
provides evidence for an Intelligent Designer.
A structural identity has been discovered between the genetic message on DNA and the written messages
of a human language. (Thaxton, “NDA” as cited in CP, 18)
There is an identity of structure between DNA (and protein) and written linguistic messages. Since we
know by experience that intelligence produces written messages, and no other cause is known, the
implication, according to the abductive method, is that intelligent cause produced DNA and protein. The
significance of this result lies in the security of it, for it is much stronger than if the structures were merely
similar. We are not dealing with anything like a superficial resemblance between DNA and a written text.
We are not saying DNA is like a message. Rather, DNA is a message. True design thus returns to biology.
(Yockey, JTB, as cited in Thaxton, “NDA,” 19)
Within biology, Intelligent Design is a theory of biological origins and development. Its fundamental claim
is that intelligent causes are necessary to explain the complex, information-rich structures of biology, and
that these causes are empirically detectable. (Dembski, “IDM,” 24)

b. Some Events in the Universe Can Be Explained Only by Intelligence

The world contains events, objects, and structures which exhaust the explanatory resources of undirected
natural causes, and which can be adequately explained only by recourse to intelligent causes. Scientists are
now in a position to demonstrate this rigorously. Thus what has been a longstanding philosophical intuition
is now being cashed out as a scientific research program. (Dembski, “IDM,” 25)
In particular, Michael Behe argues that there are no nonintelligent explanations for certain
biological phenomena in the human body and other organisms. These functions are, according to
Behe, irreducibly complex, meaning that such phenomena cannot occur in incremental changes
via evolution. In a candid moment, Charles Darwin admits, “If it could be demonstrated that any
complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive,
slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down” (Darwin, OOS, 6th ed., 154).
No one at Harvard University, no one at the National Institutes of Health, no member of the National
Academy of Sciences, no Nobel Prize winner – no one at all can give a detailed account of how the cilium,
or vision, or blood clotting, or any complex biochemical process might have developed in a Darwinian
fashion. But here we are. All these things got here somehow; if not in a Darwinian fashion, then how?
(Behe, DBB, 187)
Other examples of irreducible complexity abound, including aspects of DNA reduplication, electron
transport, telomere synthesis, photosynthesis, transcription regulation, and more. . . . [Hence,] life on earth
at its most fundamental level, in its most critical components, is the product of intelligent activity. (Behe,
DBB, 160, 193)
The conclusion of intelligent design flows naturally from the data itself – not from sacred books or
sectarian beliefs. Inferring that biochemical systems were designed by an intelligent agent is a humdrum
process that requires no new principles of logic or science. . . . [Thus,] the result of these requires no new
efforts to investigate the cell – to investigate life at the molecular level – is a loud, clear piercing cry of
‘design!’ The result is so unambiguous and so significant that it must be ranked as one of the greatest
achievements in the history of science. The discovery rivals those of Newton and Einstein. (Behe, DBB,
Another piece of evidence for intelligent design comes from someone who would deny it.

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The late astronomer Carl Sagan, founder of SETI, based the entire program on the premise that
even one recognizable message from outer space would prove that there is life outside of earth.
Hence, the same principle evident in the information discovered in the universe would argue for
an Intelligence that created it.
The receipt of a message from space is, even before we decode it, a profoundly hopeful sign. It means that
someone has learned to live with high technology; that it is possible to survive technological adolescence.
This alone, quite apart from the contents of the message, provides a powerful justification for the search for
other civilizations.
It would be easy for extraterrestrials to make an unambiguously artificial interstellar message. For example,
the first ten prime numbers – numbers divisible only by themselves and by one – are 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 13, 17,
19, 23. It is extremely unlikely that any natural physical process could transmit radio messages containing
prime numbers only. If we received such a message we would deduce a civilization out there that was at
lest fond of prime numbers. (Sagan, C, 302, 314)
Thus, if receiving a message as simple as ten prime numbers would prove an intelligent
cause, surely the amount of information in the human brain, which has “the equivalent of twenty
million books” within us (Sagan, C, 278), provides strong evidence for an exceedingly great
Designer of the world and of humans.

5. Evidence from Life

Since the time of Louis Pasteur, man has been certain that life cannot come from inorganic
material. The cause of life is something living. Yet, according to evolutionists, the exception is
that evolution is true. Life itself has a very powerful testimony that it came from another living
thing, as is the case when we observe it and consider its origins.
I think if you look at the structure of our living system, micro-organisms or ourselves under the
microscope, as it were (not literally), if you investigate a living system that is before us, that is accessible to
us, one is driven to the conclusion, inescapably, that living systems could not have been generated by
random processes, within a finite time-scale, in a finite universe. I think the evidence from life is very hard,
a hard fact, from the nature of a living system as you study it in the lab. The information content in the
living system that we have on the earth is perhaps the hardest cosmological fact. You can’t get away from
that, in the sense that the Universe has to in some way discover this arrangement. I would put that datum
above the cosmological datum in quality of information. (Wickramasinghe, “SDOL” as cited in Varghese,
ISOAG, 33)
Can other universes explain the origin of life and complex information? No, says Hugh Ross,
because the multi-universe scenario requires complete independence of universes, that is, there is
no way for these universes to interact. Further, even granting this does not explain how these
other civilizations originated, for there has to be some way these other civilizations came into
being, which falls into the cosmological argument.
Invoking other universes cannot solve the problem. All multi-universe models require that the additional
universes remain totally out of contact with one another; that is, their space-time manifolds cannot overlap.
Therefore, they cannot help resolve origin of life problems on Earth. The only explanation left for how
living organisms received their complex and ordered configurations is that an intelligent, transcendent
Creator personally infused this information” (Ross, FG, 138).

6. The Anthropic Principle

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a. Modern Science Introduces the Anthropic Principle
The Anthropic Principle states that the universe is fitted for life. Even slight variations in a
very few things would make biological life impossible. Astronomer Stanley Jaki provides many
scientific observations that, when considered together, argue very definitely for a Designer.
Is it reasonable to assume that an Intelligence which produced a universe, a totality of consistently
interacting things, is not consistent to the point of acting for a purpose? To speak of purpose may seem,
since Darwin, the most reprehensible procedure before the tribunal of science. Bafflingly enough, it is
science in its most advanced and comprehensive form scientific cosmology which reinstates today
references to purpose into scientific discourse. Shortly after the discovery of the 2.7o K radiation
cosmologists began to wonder at the extremely narrow margin allowed for cosmic evolution. The universe
began to appear to them more and more as if placed on an extremely narrow track, a track laid down so that
ultimately man may appear on the scene. For if that cosmic soup had been slightly different, not only the
chemical elements, of which all organic bodies are made, would have failed to be formed. Inert matter
would have also been subject to an interaction different from the one required for the coagulation of large
lumps of matter, such as protostars and proto-solar systems. . . . At any rate, the emergence of life on earth
is, from the purely scientific viewpoint, an outcome of immense improbability. No wonder that in view of
this quite a few cosmologists, who are unwilling to sacrifice forever at the altar of blind chance, began to
speak of the Anthropic Principle. Recognition of that principle was prompted by the nagging suspicion that
the universe may have after all been specifically tailored for the sake of man (Jaki, “FSCC” as cited in
Varghese, ISOAG, 71-72).
Hugh Ross explains how the universe shows that it has not randomly come together. Even
scientists who are not theists have acknowledged this point, including the founder of the Steady
State theory of the universe, Fred Hoyle.
Astronomers have discovered that the characteristics of the universe, of our galaxy and of our solar system
are so finely tuned to support life that the only reasonable explanation for this is the forethought of a
personal, intelligent Creator whose involvement explains the degree of fine-tunedness. It requires power
and purpose. . . . Fred Hoyle concluded in 1982 that ‘a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well
as with chemistry and biology’. It is not just the universe that bears evidence for design. The sun and the
earth also reveal such evidence. Frank Drake, Carl Sagan, and Josef Shklovskii were among the first
astronomers to make this point. They attempted to estimate the number of planets (in the universe) with
environments favorable for life support. In the early 1960s they recognized that only a certain kind of star
with a planet just the right distance from that star would provide the necessary conditions for life. (Ross,
“AEPTG” as cited in Moreland, CH, 160, 163-64)
Considering that the observable universe contains less than a trillion galaxies, each averaging a hundred
billion stars, we can see that not even one planet would be expected, by natural processes alone, to possess
the necessary conditions to sustain life. No wonder Robert Rood and James Trefil, among others, have
surmised that intelligent physical life exists only on the earth. (Ross, “AEPTG” as cited in Moreland, CH,
Meithe similarly notes, “It is this increasing amazement that has led many astronomers and
physicists to change the Anthropic principle somewhat and announce with Sir Fred Hoyle that
‘there must be a God’“ (Varghese 1984, pp. viii, 23-37). (Miethe, DGE, 165).
Robert Jastrow comments that the Anthropic Principle is the most obvious evidence of
theism modern science has produced.

Thus, according to the physicist and the astronomer, it appears that the Universe was constructed within
very narrow limits, in such a way that man could dwell in it. This result is called the Anthropic principle. It
is the most theistic result ever to come out of science, in my view. (Jastrow, “AG” as cited in Varghese,

- 18 -
ISOAG, 22)
Stephen Hawking again notes that the conditions for life necessary at a subatomic level give
evidence for design, even God. He even says that it is difficult to conceive of any other
alternative than intelligent design for the universe once the evidence has been examined.
The laws of science, as we know them at present, contain many fundamental numbers, like the size of the
electric charge of the electron and the ratio of the masses of the proton and the electron. The remarkable
fact is that the values of these numbers seem to have been very finely adjusted to make possible the
development of life. . . . Nevertheless, it seems clear that there are relatively few ranges of values for the
numbers that would allow the development of any form of intelligent life. . . . One can take this either as
evidence of a divine purpose in Creation and the choice of the laws of science or as support for the strong
Anthropic principle. . . . This means that the initial state of the universe must have been very carefully
chosen indeed if the hot big bang model was correct right back to the beginning of time. It would be very
difficult to explain why the universe should have begun in just this way, except as the act of a God who
intended to create beings like us. (Hawking, BHT, 125, 127)
Gordon Clark writes that, once we inspect the facts of the universe, noting its irreducible
complexity, all the conditions necessary to be exactly accurate for life, and common sense lead
to the conclusion that God intelligently designed the universe.
It is hard to believe that the vastness and grandeur of nature is all a matter of chance. Are the properties of
the chemical elements just a matter of chance too--carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and the rest? Are the
remarkable properties of water and carbon dioxide again due to chance? Yet again, is science pointing to
an unknown God? Even the atheistic scientist rarely cracks a joke about what is behind nature. (Clark, SC,
Hugh Ross echoes the same sentiment.
Again we see that a personal, transcendent Creator must have brought the universe into existence. A
personal, transcendent Creator must have designed the universe. A personal, transcendent Creator must
have designed planet Earth. A personal, transcendent Creator must have designed life. (Ross, FG, 138)

b. Anthropic Principle and Multiple Universes

As introduced briefly above, come have introduced the idea that our universe may not be the
only one in existence. The motive behind such a suggestion is often to avoid the force of the
Anthropic Principle in our universe. However, the flaw in such an approach is that it merely
passes on the required explanation for a cause of intelligent design to not only explain our
universe finely tuned for life but also others that may or may not support life. If anything, the
suggestion of multiple universes reinforced the teleological argument.
Robert Jastraw addresses multiple universes by saying that it is an unprovable untestable
theory that serves only to distract scientists away from the evidence at hand supporting the
universe’s intelligent design.
Some scientists suggest, in an effort to avoid a theistic or teleological implication in their findings, that
there must be an infinite number of universes, representing all possible combinations of basic forces and
conditions, and that our Universe is one of an infinitely small fraction, in this great plentitude of universes,
in which life exists. . . . But I find this to be a rather formal solution to the philosophical dilemma created
for scientists by the anthropic principle - a typical theorist’s solution. In any case, it is an untestable
proposition, because all these are forever beyond the range of our observations; they are outside the
borders of the visible universe, and can never be seen. (Jastrow, “AG” as cited in Varghese, ISOAG, 22 )

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Hugh Ross argues that multiple universes that support life only means that there must have
been intelligent design for those universes, too, which does nothing for those who would object
to the teleological argument.
Invoking other universes cannot solve the problem. All multi-universe models require that the additional
universes remain totally out of contact with one another; that is, their space-time manifolds cannot overlap.
Therefore, they cannot help resolve origin of life problems on Earth. The only explanation left for how
living organisms received their complex and ordered configurations is that an intelligent, transcendent
Creator personally infused this information. Again we see that a personal, transcendent Creator must have
brought the universe into existence. A personal, transcendent Creator must have designed the universe. A
personal, transcendent Creator must have designed planet Earth. A personal, transcendent Creator must
have designed life (Ross, FG, 138).

c. Finely Tuned Natural Laws Imply Purpose

The laws of nature operate with such regularity in maintaining the universe we see that
intelligence rather than nonintelligence seems a more reasonable explanation of the origin of the
When you realize that the laws of nature must be incredibly finely tuned to produce the universe we see . . .
that conspires to plant the idea that the universe did not just happen, but that there must be a purpose
behind it. (Polkinghorne, as cited in Begley, “SFG,” 48)
[Recent discoveries in cosmology reveal] a universe that fits religious views [- specifically, that] somehow
intelligence must have been involved in the laws of the universe. (Townes, as cited in Begley, “SFG,” 49)
. . . I think one is driven again to postulate an intelligence. The logically easiest way of beating the
improbability is to say that an intelligence intervened. (Wickramasinghe, “SDOL” as cited in Varghese,
ISOAG, 32)
[Today] intellectuals are beginning to find it respectable [to talk about how physical law seems to favor
life]. (Barbour, as cited in “CD,” 52)
The fact that these relations [fine-tuned universe] are necessary for our existence is one of the most
fascinating discoveries of modern science. . . . All this prompts the question of why, from the infinite range
of possible values that nature could have selected for the fundamental constants, and from the infinite
variety of initial conditions that could have characterized the primeval universe, the actual values and
conditions conspire to produce the particular range of very special features that we observe. For clearly the
universe is a very special place: exceedingly uniform on a large scale, yet not so precisely uniform that
galaxies could not form; . . . an expansion rate tuned to the energy content to unbelievable accuracy; values
for the strengths of its forces that permit nuclei to exist, yet do not burn up all the cosmic hydrogen, and
many more apparent accidents of fortune. (Davies, “AU” as cited in Plantinga, “MN”, 111)
In answering the question, “How do you find the Anthropic Principle?” Wickramasinghe
I think it is certainly, objectively true that the number of carbon atoms and oxygen atoms and nitrogen
atoms in the universe have an appropriate proportion for life to start on a planet like the earth. That is
certainly true. Whether that means anything much deeper than that those proportions have been controlled
by an Intelligence, I don’t know. I tend to think that they are, that they have been. (Wickramasinghe, as
cited in Varghese, ISOAG, 36)
Fred Heeren adds that since science can expect order and rationality in nature, “scientists
have found that they can actually predict the values of certain constants - within narrow
parameters - based on life’s need of them, as Fred Holye did when he accurately predicted the

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resonance of the carbon atom” (Heeren, “DMCPBC,” 39).

d. The Universe Designed for Life

In particular, the universe appears to be designed with the exact conditions to support life.
Since the probability is much higher for the conditions in the universe to not favor life than to
favor it, the best explanation appears to be that God made the our universe suitable for life.
[The universe is] apparently designed for the development of life and destined to live forever, neither to fly
apart into dying cinders nor collapse. (Sternglass, as cited in “CD,” 52)
Had the expansion rate at the beginning been faster or slower - by mere 1 part in 1060 - life would not have
been possible. . . . One matter atheists and Bible believers agree on is that our universe has been finely
tuned, against astronomical odds, in a way that permits conscious beings to exist. (Heeren, “DMCPBC,”
39, 42)

e. Fine Tuning of Events at the Time of the Big Bang

The same reasoning regarding life can also be applied to the Bog Bang. The conditions
present at the Big Bang, astrophysicists think, had to be exactly right for the universe to develop
the way it did. A minute adjustment in any one of a multitude of factors would have imperiled
the universe as we know it.
We know that there has to have been a very close balance between the competing events of explosive
expansion and gravitational contraction which, at the very earliest epoch about which we can even pretend
to speak (called the Planck time, 1043 sec. after the big bang), would have corresponded to the incredible
degree of accuracy represented by a deviation in their ratio from unity by only one part in 10 to the sixtieth.
(Polkinghorne, SC as cited in Plantinga, “MN”, 22)

f. The Specificity of the Universe Must Involve a Supercosmic Intelligence

Specified complexity, as stated before, argues for a Designer. Within the Anthropic
Principle, so many variables from the supercosmic to the subatomic had to occur just so in order
for organisms to develop. The gradual formation of numerous irreducibly complex entities point
to an Intelligence planning it all to come together as it has.
The actual specificity of the universe is a striking reminder of such a dependence. Precisely because the
actual cosmos is so specific, it should be easy to see the possibility of an immensely large number of other
specificities. The actual specificity of the universe, which cannot be necessary, reveals therefore its
dependence on a choice beyond the universe. Since the specificity of the universe is highly understandable,
the choice underlying that specificity, a choice which also gives the universe its actual existence, must
involve an intelligence and power which is supercosmic, that is, beyond that cosmos which for science is
the totality of consistently interacting things. (Jaki, “FSCCU” as cited in Varghese, ISOAG, 71)

g. Creation Ex Nihilo (Out Of Nothing) Does Not Contradict Modern Science

In answering the question, “How much more plausible is belief in a Creator of the universe in
the light of the advancement of modem science,” Margenau says,
Maybe there are two points I should make. In the first place, if there was no Creator, how did the universe

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come into being? I don’t believe, I could simply not get myself to think that it all happened by accident. . . .
After all, the Creation of the universe had to obey the Law of the Conservation of Energy, of Mass, and so
forth. That was St. Thomas. It now happens, and this is not known to many people, that the Creation of the
universe out of nothing does not contradict the laws of Nature. If you write down the equation for the total
energy of the mass of all matter, of radius, let’s say, R and Mass M, you find the following. The energy,
according to Einstein, is Mass times C2, MC2 . This ball of matter also has gravitational energy.
Gravitational forces are attractive. Therefore the gravitational energy has a negative sign, it’s a negative
energy. The total energy consists of two parts: MC2 and the second one happens to be Newton’s constant
of universal gravitation, G, times the square of M divided by R plus MC2 minus the latter term. Now if this
difference was zero, the ball could spring into existence out of nothing and not violate the principle of
conservation of energy. Well, it turns out that if you put the equation, the first term minus the second term
equals zero, you get almost exactly the condition of the black hole. Therefore the Creation of the universe
out of nothing is by no means contradictory to modem science; Relativity and Quantum Mechanics have
shown us that it isn’t. . . . It is absolutely unreasonable [for someone to reject the notion of a Creator by
appealing to science]. [Rather, the modern science] has definitively shown [the non-contradiction of
Creation out of nothing]. This is not widely known. [Furthermore, the Anthropic Principle] is absolutely
convincing to me. . . . Do you see Purpose in the universe and, if so, what is its relation to the Creator?
‘There my argument is extremely simple. What is the difference between cause and purpose? Cause is
determination of future events by the past. Purpose is determination of future events by a vision of the
future. You can’t have a purpose unless you visualize what you want to do. Therefore, purpose requires a
mind’” (Margenau, “MPBG” as cited in Varghese, ISOAG, 41-42).
In continuing, Margenau was asked if the leading scientists opposed to religion. The question
assumes that the Anthropic Principle has adequately demonstrated the truth of the teleological
argument. Numerous scientists are convinced and have become believers, showing that faith and
reason can coexist in intermingled harmony.
The leading scientists [Eccles, Wigner, Heisenberg, Schroedinger, Einstein, etc.], the people who have
made the contributions which has made science grow so vastly in the last fifty years, are, so far as I know,
all religious in their beliefs. None of these men had any objection to religion. They didn’t write about
religion much Heisenberg did occasionally - but they were certainly not atheists. So what I’m saying is
that, if you take the topnotch scientists, you find very few atheists among them. [On other occasion
Margenau said] . . . if you take the outstanding physicists, the ones who have done the most to advance
modem physics, especially Heisenberg, Schroedinger, Dirac (a Nobel Prize winner) you find them all
interested in religion. All these men were intensely interested in religion. (Margenau, “MPBG” as cited in
Varghese, ISOAG, 43-44).

III. Moral Argument

A. General Summary
There are many versions of the moral argument, but its basic form recognizes two elements:
the reality of objective morality and the source of laws in a lawmaker. Norman Geisler provides
the following summary of the argument.
1. There are objective moral laws.
2. Moral laws come from a moral lawgiver.
3. Therefore, a moral lawgiver exists. (Geisler, WA, 54)

B. Particular Arguments
1. Kant’s God Posited from Moral Necessity
Immanuel Kant did not believe the preceding two arguments were valid, and so most

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consider him an agnostic. However, in his Critique of Practical Reason, he makes an argument
for God based on morality. Moral duty, Kant says, means that God exists, for God is connected
with the highest good and we in pursuing the highest good (moral duty) pursue God.
Happiness . . . must lead to the supposition of the existence of a cause adequate to this effect, that is, it
must postulate the existence of God as belonging necessarily to the possibility of the highest good. . . . in
the practical task of pure reason, that is, in the necessary pursuit of the highest good, such a connection
[between morality and the proportionate happiness] is postulated as necessary: we ought to strive to
promote the highest good. . . . The highest good in the world is possible only insofar as a supreme cause of
nature having a causality in keeping with the moral disposition is assumed. Now, a being capable of
actions in accordance with the representation of laws is an intelligence (a rational being), and the causality
of such a being in accordance with this representation of laws is his will. . . . Now, it was a duty for us to
promote the highest good; hence there is in us not merely the warrant but also the necessity, as a need
connected with duty, to presuppose the possibility of this highest good, which, since it is possible only
under the condition of the existence of God, connects the presupposition of the existence of God
inseparably with duty; that is, it is morally necessary to assume the existence of God. (Kant, CPR, 104-5)

2. Rashdall’s Argument from Rational Necessity

In order to make morality a meaningful term, Rashdall says, we must say that God exists.
“We may be able, perhaps, to give some meaning to Morality without the postulate of God, but
not its true or full meaning. If the existence of God is not a postulate of all Morality, it is a
postulate of a sound Morality” (Rashdall, “TGE” as cited in Hick, EG, 150). Further, “A
Morality which is not absolute or unconditional is not Morality as it presents itself to the
developed moral consciousness” (Rashdall, “TGE” as cited in Hick, EG, 152).

3. Lewis’ Expansion of the Moral Argument

C.S. Lewis popularized the moral argument in the last century through his book Mere
Christianity. In it, he makes the claim that there is a universal moral law, and that this law takes
the form of a message: “You shall” or “You shall not.” This is a form of communication, which
can only come from a Moral Intelligence who communicates right and wrong to us through the
manifestations of the universal moral law. Hence, God exists.
First, “The Moral Law, or Law of Human Nature, is not simply a fact about human behavior in the same
way as the Law of Gravitation is, or may be, simply a fact about how heavy objects behave. On the other
hand, it is not a mere fancy, for we cannot get rid of the idea, and most of the things we say and think about
men would be reduced to nonsense if we did. And it is not simple a statement about how we should like
men to behave for our own convenience; for the behavior we call bad or unfair is not exactly the same as
the behavior we find inconvenient, and may even be the opposite. Consequently, the rule of Right and
Wrong, or Law of Human Nature, or whatever you call it, must somehow or other be a real thing – a thing
that is really there, not made up by ourselves” (Lewis, MC, 30)
Second, “I find that I do not exist on m own, that I am under a law; that somebody or something wants me
to behave in a certain way” (Lewis, MC 34).
Therefore, “[There is] Something which is directing the universe, and which appears in me as a law urging
me to do right and making me feel responsible and uncomfortable when I do wrong. I think we have to
assume it is more like a mind that it is like anything else we know - because after all the only other thing
we know is matter and you can hardly imagine a bit of matter giving instructions.” (Lewis, MC, 34)

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4. Dostoevsky’s Argument from the Consequences of Atheism
One effective way of arguing for theism is to show the absurdity of the alternatives. The
nineteenth century Russian novelist Dostoevsky made use of this method when he wrote in The
Brothers Karamazov. Briefly stated, he argues for the following:
1. If atheism is true then man is “the chief of the earth.”
2. If man is “the chief of the earth” then he can abandon absolute standards (i.e., morality).
3. If man can abandon the absolute standards then “everything is permissible.”
4. Therefore, if atheism is true, everything is permissible.

Below is his argument from the absurdity of atheistic morality.

‘But what will become of men then?’ . . . ‘without God and immortal life? All things are lawful then, they
can do what they like?’ ‘Didn’t you know?’” (Dostoevsky, BK, 312)
It’s God that’s worrying me. That’s the only thing that’s worrying me. What if he doesn’t exist? What if
Rakitin’s right - that it’s an idea made up by men? Then if He doesn’t exist, man is the chief of the earth, of
the universe. Magnificent! Only how is he going to be good without God? That’s the question. I always
come back to that. For whom is man going to love then? To whom will he be thankful? To whom will he
sing the hymn? Rakitin laughs. Rakitin says that one can love humanity without God. Well, only a
sniveling idiot can maintain that. Life’s easy for Rakitin. ‘You’d better think about the extension of civic
rights, or even of keeping down the price of meat. You will show your love for humanity more simply and
directly by that, than by philosophy.’ I answered him, ‘Well, but you, without God, are more likely to raise
the price of meat, if it suits you, and make a rouble on every copeck.’ (Dostoevsky, BK, 314)
‘I [devil in Ivan’s dream] maintain that nothing need be destroyed, that we only need to destroy the idea of
God in man, that’s how we have to set to work. . . . As soon as men have all of them denied God . . . the
old conception of the universe will fall of itself without cannibalism, and, what’s more, the old morality,
and everything will begin anew. Men will unite to take from life all it can give, but only for joy and
happiness in the present world. Man will be lifted up with a spirit of divine Titanic pride and the man-god
will appear. . . . Love will be sufficient only for a moment of life, but the very consciousness of its
momentariness will intensify its fire, which now is dissipated in dreams of eternal love beyond the grave’. .
. What’s more, even if this period [of destruction of the idea of God] never comes to pass, since there is
anyway no God and no immortality, the new man may well become the man-god, even if he is the only one
in the whole world, and promoted to his new position, he may lightheartedly overstep all the barriers of the
old morality of the old slaveman, if necessary. There is no law for God. Where God stands, the place is
holy. Where I stand will be at once the foremost place . . . ‘all things are lawful’ and that’s the end of it
(Dostoevsky, BK, 345)

5. The Argument from Conscience

Peter Kreeft explores the possibilities for the source of morality felt in the human conscience.
He says that there are only four possibilities: something less than me, me, something equal to
me, or something greater than me. By asking a series of rhetorical questions, Kreeft concludes
that reason reveals that God is the source of the morality in our conscience.
Isn’t it remarkable that no one, even the most consistent subjectivist believes that it is ever good for anyone
to deliberately and knowingly disobey his or her conscience? Even if different people’s consciences tell
them to do or avoid totally different things, there remains one moral absolute for everyone: never disobey
your own conscience. . . . [There are only four possibilities of the origin of the authority of the conscience:]
1. From something less than me (nature).

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2. From me (individual).
3. From others equal to me (society).
4. From something above me (God).

Let us consider each of these possibilities in order.

1. How can I be absolutely obligated by something less than me - for example, by animal instinct or
practical need for material survival?
2. How can I obligate myself absolutely? Am I absolute? Do I have the right to demand absolute
obedience from anyone, even myself? And if I am the one who locked myself in this prison of
obligation, I can also let myself out, thus destroying the absoluteness of the obligation which we
admitted as our premise.
3. How can society obligate me? What right do my equals have to impose their values on me? Does
quantity make quality? Do a million human beings make a relative into an absolute? Is ‘society’
4. The only source of absolute moral obligation left is something superior to me. This binds my will,
morally, with rightful demands for complete obedience. Thus God, or something like God, is the
only adequate source and ground for the absolute moral obligation we all feel to obey our
conscience. Conscience is thus explainable only as the voice of God in the soul.”
(Kreeft, HCA, 74-75)

The question of whether God exists is one that human can answer. We have the necessary
information with which to reasonably conclude that God exists. Through the cosmological
argument, we have seen that the nature of the things in the world testify to the fact that a Creator
causes it to come to be and continue to be. Through the teleological argument, we have seen that
the exquisite specified complexity along with the Anthropic Principle argue for an Intelligent
Designer. Through the moral argument, we have seen that the nature of morality is objective and
prescriptive, which points to the Moral Lawgiver. It is reasonable to conclude that God exists,
and to conclude against it rubs against reality itself.

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