Aug 1 2012
Our monthly feature excerpted from Dave Hunt's book of the same title.
Beware of Trying to "Force" Yourself to Believe
Question: I have struggled with this thing called “faith” all of my life. I want to “believe” in God and the Bible but can’t make myself do it. I keep having these nagging doubts. What am I supposed to do?
Response: By all means, don’t “make” yourself believe in God or the Bible. Let me suggest that you begin by facing the logical necessity of God’s existence. Without God, neither the universe nor we ourselves would exist, and there would be no purpose or meaning for anything. The Bible begins like this: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis:1:1). It doesn’t argue God’s existence, because that fact is self-evident from the universe we see around us and has been implanted by God in every person’s conscience.
The Bible unapologetically declares, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God” (Psalm:14:1; 53:1). Any thinking human being must agree with this pronouncement. Only a fool could believe that the universe came into existence by chance. Just one living cell in the human body is, according to Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling, “more complex than New York City.” To imagine that life itself (which is a mystery beyond the capability of science to fathom) and the incredible complexity of matter that sustains life could happen by chance is absurd.
All the Evidence Points to God
Suppose two survivors of a ship that sank have drifted for days in a life raft across the South Pacific and at last are washed ashore on an island. Their great hope, of course, is that the island is inhabited so they can find food, medical attention, and a means of returning to their distant homes. Pushing their way into the jungle, they suddenly come upon an automated factory operating full tilt. Though no person is visible, products are being manufactured, packaged, and labeled for shipping.
One of the parties exclaims, “Praise God! The island is inhabited! Someone must have made and oversees this factory!”
“You’re crazy,” replies his companion. “You’ve been out in the sun too long. There’s absolutely no reason to believe that this thing was designed and put together by some intelligent being. It just happened by chance over who-knows-how-many billions of years.”
The first man looks down at his feet and sees a watch with a broken wristband lying in the dirt. Again he exclaims, “Look! A watch! This proves the island’s inhabited!”
“You’ve got to be kidding,” retorts his companion. “That thing is just a conglomeration of atoms that happened to come together in that form by chance plus billions of years of random selection.”
No person in his right mind could imagine that a factory or a watch could just happen by chance. Then how could any rational person insist that the universe came into existence by chance, much less that the complex life forms on earth did so! A single cell in a leaf or in an animal’s body is thousands of times more complex than the factory and the watch put together. The human body consists of trillions of cells, thousands of different kinds, all working together in perfect balance. Our top scientists can’t produce a human brain even with all of the computers and technology that exist today. Only God could do so. Chance certainly could not!
Nor does it make sense that God would create man without having a definite purpose for him. Nothing is so frustrating to an intelligent person as having no purpose in life. Yet the very idea of purpose could not arise by chance, for purpose and chance are opposites. There can’t be design without a designer. We know, therefore, that God had a purpose for creating us. And if so, He must have a way to communicate that purpose.
The Bible claims to be the Word of God to mankind and explains God’s purpose and plan. We are not expected to believe that claim without sufficient evidence, but in fact that claim is supported by a vast body of evidence, much of it held in museums around the world and so irrefutable that no one capable of reading the Bible has any excuse for doubting its claims. We will present many such proofs throughout this book.
The major proof of God’s existence that the Bible offers is the fulfillment of hundreds of specific prophecies. In Isaiah:46:9–10, God says that He will prove His existence by telling what will happen before it happens. In Isaiah:43:10, God tells Israel that she is His witness, both to herself and to the world, that He is God. How is that so? Because of the many prophecies God made concerning Israel that have come to pass: that the Jews would be scattered to every nation on earth; that they would be hated and persecuted and killed as no other people (anti-Semitism); that they would be preserved in spite of a thousand Hitlers trying to exterminate them; that they would be brought back to their land in the last days . . . and many other prophecies that have clearly been fulfilled and are in the process of being fulfilled before our very eyes.
We won’t go into these details here because we have dealt thoroughly with prophecy in other books. The point, however, is that no one should believe anything without a solid reason for doing so, and the evidence compelling mankind to believe in God and the Bible is absolutely overwhelming.