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Reasons why I think God exists

Over the past year I created a little text file on my computer listing the reasons why I think God exists. Whenever I think of another good reason I add it to the list, and the same is true whenever I stumble across another good reason in my day to day, mostly while browsing Christian websites. I refer to my list whenever I start to doubt and it's actually been very useful for me because it means I can treat God's existence as a given and move on to more important things, like living the Christian life and working with the Spirit, who is no doubt amused when I load it up.

Some of the reasons on my list are really, really good. For example, it's fair to say that God almost certainly exists philosophically speaking. Other reasons are simply based on observations and high probability. For example, Israel's regathering is a pretty powerful statement in discussions about the modern fulfilment of ancient Bible prophecy. Finally, some of my reasons are rather personal, perhaps a bit contrived, yet useful to me even though they can seem a bit daft to others. For example: numerical calculations and colours of flags as evidence of the fulfilment of Bible prophecy.

I think it's time to publish this list and therefore provide what is essentially a very brief but hopefully compelling proof for the existence of the Christian God. I won't be the first to do so, it's been done before by many people, some compelling and some not.

It is my intention to write about some, if not all of these points in much greater detail in subsequent articles.

So, on to my list:

  • The moral, fine-tuning and cosmological arguments for God's existence are quite convincing.
  • C. S. Lewis' argument from desire is emotionally convincing.
  • A belief in Jesus' resurrection is a reasonable conclusion for anyone who sincerely considers it a possibility and then thoroughly analyses all of the available evidence.
  • Daniel 9 gives a specific, dated prophecy about the appearance of Jesus and the destruction of Jerusalem, which no reasonable scholar would deny actually happened.
  • Jews are a civilization that maintained their identity for 2,000 years, without land or leadership as per Hosea 3:4.
  • After 70 AD, Jerusalem was conquered many times by many different civilizations as per Luke 21:24.
  • The Balfour Declaration in 1917 is similar to the commands to rebuild Jerusalem in Ezra (particularly chapter 7) and Nehemiah.
  • Possibility of 50 year gap between 1917 and 1967 being a "jubilee".
  • Israel was regathered from all nations, a second time, as per Isaiah 11:11.
  • Declaration of independent state of Israel seems to fulfil the prophecy of Israel being born in a single day as per Isaiah 66:7-8. News report of the day actually uses the term "born", likely unintentionally.
  • Ezekiel 4 specifies 430 years of punishment for Israel but Israel only served 70 years in exile. It's worth considering the possibility that the remaining 360 years, multiplied by 7 (as per Leviticus 26), takes us to 1948.
  • There were 19 years between declaration of state in 1948 and the capture of Jerusalem in 1967, which is the same amount of time between Babylon conquering Israel and capturing Jerusalem.
  • Interestingly, Israel's most important recent war was the Six Day War in 1967 which only lasted six days and ended on a Sabbath. Jerusalem was conquered almost "accidentally" in 1967.
  • Israel has survived multiple wars from coalitions of surrounding enemy nations and in fact has prospered in defensive war, almost entirely without external support.
  • Israel has existed for less than 50 years yet is at the front of technological advancement, and is a desirable place to live when considering the surrounding nations.
  • Israel and the Jews generally attract an unusual amount of contempt that is not easily explained. It can be said objectively that the UN is heavily biased against Israel.
  • God now wants to be known for His regathering rather than the original Exodus as per Jeremiah 23:7-8.
  • The east gate in Jerusalem remains closed.
  • Hebrew is the official language of Israel as per Zeph 3:9. Christianity may have been the strange bedfellow to ensure its survival.
  • The colours of the four horsemen of the apocalypse (white, black, red and green) are the exclusive colours of the flags of Islamic nations surrounding Israel today.
  • The Christ/Antichrist relationships in Islam and Revelation are set up so perfectly many can be easily deceived by Islam during the end times.
  • One of the few distinct earthquake fault lines run through the right side of Israel, especially over the Mount of Olives (Zech 14:4).
  • Consciousness is baffling.
  • The bible states things that were only recently known scientifically (i.e. Isa 42:5, especially Job 38:31).
  • There is no objectively good evidence that aliens exist.
  • Regular, accurate and impossible-by-human-means exhorting prophetic ministry by the likes of Shawn Bolz.
  • It's hard to completely disown the sheer number of people who claim to have experienced a miracle.
  • The terse nature of this bullet-point list does not do the arguments justice, but each is worth considering. As I said earlier, I therefore intend to explore some or all of these points in future articles!

    I've opened up comments on this article. Why do you think God exists?

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    Comments


    Ex-Biblical Scholar - 22/11/2017 19:19

    Oh I get that Bolz may or may not be used by God in the eyes of many - We know the company Jesus kept, and as Christians we should likewise refrain from judgement based on that alone. My issue is more it calls into question his own prophecies, before going into the whole minefield of historic accounts of hot/cold reading and utilising technology to have information sent to him. Let's not even go into any previous admissions of fraudulence on his part. He does little to discredit those whom are committing fraud upon a people. I deliberately kept my Bolz response short, because I have paragraphs upon paragraphs of commentary on his work and his... well... legacy, one might call it.

    Again, I'm not here to dispute God's existence - It's a personal matter and I have a personal belief myself. It's important to be aware, however, where a shield has cracks. As someone who used to spend a lot of time deliberately testing the evidence, there is a lot of grievous misunderstanding of the core texts and of just how much the Old Testament in the Christian Bible comes from around 300AD, as opposed to before the birth of Christ... One also has to be careful with regards to moral arguments, as these are more philosophical than evidence-based in nature. Might I recommend the writings of Werner Keller as a good starting point?

    Nicholas Hill - 22/11/2017 17:43 - Author

    OK, so I've fixed the rendering issues and your response looks nice and lovely and spaced out now instead of tiny and compressed.

    I think the prophetic evidence is very good, but I know not everyone will agree. Your response is in-depth and it would be a challenge for me to engage with it fully, but perhaps I will do it in a future article! I think we could spend a long time discussing prophetic evidence, but honestly at this time I would prefer instead to point out that there are other, better arguments for God's existence (moral, teleological, ontological, cosmological, historic evidence for the resurrection).

    What jumped out at me was your comment regarding Shawn Bolz. It didn't seem like a comment regarding whether or not God uses him, but rather it seemed to be about his character and the people he associates with. In his book, "Translating God", he talks about this a little and I would agree with him that it should not matter who you associate with. He doesn't say it explicitly (perhaps he does, I don't remember), but I wouldn't be surprised if he thought the same thing could have been said about Jesus.

    Nicholas Hill - 22/11/2017 17:23 - Author

    Thanks for your response Ex-Biblical Scholar, I appreciate the input! And yes, I'll immediately fix the comment rendering issues!

    Ex-Biblical Scholar - 22/11/2017 17:17

    Also please allow your comments to allow for new lines, because my comment looks horrendous.

    Ex-Biblical Scholar - 22/11/2017 17:17

    Christian and ex-scholar here. Your arguments are interesting, although they are open to a few notable flaws...

    - Daniel 9 is a questionable chapter itself. There is a significant body of work pointing to how, like with many other aspects of the Old Testament, this prophecy was amended after events. If we consider that many, at the time of its amendment, did not believe in (or even know of) the threats to editors (paraphrasing) that removing from the Word of God would see equal measure of their place in heaven removed... Well, after examining its structure, it's likely Daniel 9 was created to confirm past events, whilst still maintaining a vague-ness in its presentation. Furthermore, there is a lot of study which infers that this rewritten passage (As it doesn't meet the other structural or linguistic standards of the chapter) may have been in fact reappropriated in part from other prophecies, again giving weight to the idea of amendment. Not a certainty, but it's there.

    - Luke 21:24 is a common theme in the history of many people at the time. Indeed, such a stance was so prolific that by law of averages one race could succeed.

    - The contempt for Israel and the Jews has a long and deep-rooted history in Europe, African, and Arabic society. A lot of the historic hatred (Pre-100AD) can actually be explained with three key points: Land disputes, the prevalence of Jewish mercenary forces in early history, and their unusual stance as a people in not accepting the local customs in places they expanded to. If we go by geographical descriptions, as given in the bible, it would actually seem that the Jewish population in its earliest years were aggressive in their expansion and spread much farther than they do today - Only meeting their comeuppance each time their population was too thinly spread out in order to deal with an aggressor with a centralised control structure rather than the tribal allegiances that the Jewish people themselves held firm to. On top of this, Jewish mercenaries were held in high regard for their combat abilities, yet were also seen to be aggressors themselves as they would often establish colonies in foreign lands after serving a superior power without due process. Finally, there are a myriad of sources from Greek and Arabic historians which point to how the Jewish population would refuse to integrate into societies they emigrated in to. When we couple this with the post-200AD agenda of the "Jewish people being detrimental to Christianity" (with a healthy smattering of "They killed Christ" and "Roman Emperors need to subjugate a population further"), that such hatred remains ingrained in populations to this day remains unsurprising. Indeed, this is why you end up with some of the last true descendants of Solomonic tradition being in Ethiopia, as opposed to Israel.

    - Zephaniah 3:9 refers to a spiritual language, not a physical language. Specifically, that the language of the people will turn away from the vitrol, instead moving to one of faith and hope. There are further arguments to this, but this is widely understood to refer to the "Language of the Peoples spirits" as opposed to "The Literal Language of the People". Of note, however, is that some people now begin to argue that if it was a literal language, it might actually be English... This is a fringe argument, but it does unite the Christian world in a way Hebrew does not.

    - Many references to Israel being "born" were in fact intentional. Many leaders of the Western World, at the time, were influencing reports so as to encourage a rebirth of Israel as according to the bible. There are some excellent interviews with journalists and civil servants which go into great detail about how the public presentation of the "Birth of Israel" was forcefully shaped to meet the expectations - All thanks to Theologians who were consulted with extensively on the issue, so as to neither upset the Israeli-populace nor the hard Christian sentiments post-war.

    - Your colours for the four horsemen are questionable in their interpretation, as the specific colours mentioned in the earliest texts we have would not accurately match those of the surrounding nations. Rather, those four colours in fact DO accurately reflect flags relating to those flown by British vessels between 1940-1944, when they were trying to in fact prevent further immigration of Jewish people into Mandatory Palestine. It may be worth reading into the background of Mossad LeAliyah Bet, as at the time many believed that it was in fact the British who were acting as possible agents of the Apocalypse.

    - Shawn Bolz has been called into question many times, and has been caught up in his associations with other individuals whom have turned out to be fraudulent.

    - Islam and the Qu'ran in fact go hand-in-hand with Revelations as, if we look at literal translations, it is highly likely that Islam remains the vanguard of faith whilst Christians act as a bulwark. This is something scholars were well aware of as far back as the original Crusades (Hence the Papal missive that Islam must not be allowed to steal this role from Christians). Also bear in mind that the bible explicitly states that the Anti-Christ will be of Roman origin - Arguably, Revelations is actually an argument against allowing the church to be taken over by the "Drunk whore" of Rome whom spreads herself across the lands, which also explains the reference to the Seven Mountains which would have clearly been Rome. Much as Rome enticed others with promises of glory, greed, and power, so it was believed that a Rome-led church would lead to end-times. Indeed, there is rising evidence that, in fact, Revelations is a cautionary advisement written as an advisory against letting Rome take the church and edit the bible for their own means (Much as they had other religions). This is something I've been writing about over the last 4 years, and the deeper you look at it the more fascinating it becomes. If anything, the corruption of the Roman Catholic church is actually predicted here -its recent fall from grace in the last 100 years matching up greater to Revelations than any other possibility at this time... But then Revelations is, in itself, a peculiar book.

    - The bible at no point discounts aliens or life elsewhere. We do have strong indications that single-cell forms can-and-do exist in space, but no indication of where they came from... But this is irrelevant, as the bible does not discount life elsewhere.