The Failure of Atheism to Account for Existence

As a worldview, atheism is intellectually bankrupt and is wrought with philosophical problems.  One of the biggest is its lack of ability to account for our own existence.

Okay, so we exist.  That's obvious.  And though atheists like to tout the evolutionary flag, evolution isn't the issue here.  Instead, we need to go way back and ask, where did the universe come from?  You see, whatever has come into existence was caused to come into existence by something else.  The universe came into existence.  So, what caused it to come into existence?

When answering this question, there are only two possibilities to account for the cause of the universe:  an impersonal cause and a personal cause. This is an antonymic pair that exhausts all possibilities.  It is either one or the other.  There is no third option.  Let’s first look at the atheist option to explain the universe: an impersonal cause. 

If the atheist were to say that the universe brought itself into existence, then that would be illogical since something that does not exist has no nature; and with no nature, there are no attributes; and with no attributes, actions can’t be performed such as bringing itself into existence.  So, that doesn’t work.

If the atheist said the universe has always existed, that doesn’t work either because that would mean the universe was infinitely old.  If it is infinitely old, then why hasn’t it run out of useable energy by now as the 2nd law of thermodynamics would state.  Also, in order to get to the present in an infinitely old universe, an infinite amount of time would have to be crossed.  But, it is impossible to cross an infinite amount of time to get to now.  These problems would also mean that there could not be an infinite amount of past cycles of the universe where it expands and contracts forever. So, those explanations can’t work.

If the atheist says that matter and/or energy have somehow eternally existed before the universe, just in different forms, then the same issue of crossing an infinite amount of time to get to now would negate that idea.  But, this explanation would pose yet another problem.  If the necessary conditions for the cause of the universe have always existed within the pre-existent matter and energy, then the effect of the universe being formed is a necessary result of that matter and energy; and the universe would have been formed an infinitely long time ago.  But this can’t work since it would mean the universe would have already run out of useable energy by now (entropy problem again)--not to mention the perpetual problem of crossing an infinite amount of time to get to now.  So, that explanation doesn’t work either.

Okay, so the universe, which is comprised of matter and energy, cannot be infinitely old in its present form or any other form.  So, how did it and ultimately we get here?  Atheism can’t help us here.  So, let’s turn our attention to the other option: a personal cause.  If there is a personal influence, which means a personal being that acted upon the universe, then we have an explanation for the cause of the universe.  Let me explain.

A rock doesn't suddenly change from being a rock into say an axe head unless acted upon by something else.  For matter and energy to change and form something new, they must be acted upon from the outside. So we must ask what acted upon matter and energy and caused the universe to exist?

Whatever caused the universe existed before the universe.  Since the universe had a beginning in time and since matter and energy do not spontaneously change and arrange themselves into something new, then the best explanation for the cause of the universe is an action that was a decision.

In other words, a decision to act at a specific time in the past is the best explanation of the existence of the universe. Of course, we Christians would say this decision was made by a personal being whom we call God.

You see?  The atheists have nothing to offer us with the important issue of explaining how we got here.  Atheism can’t answer one of the most important philosophical questions pertaining to our own existence.  It is deficient and lacking and at best can offer us only ignorance and guesses.

Okay, finally, even though it isn’t necessary in this video, I’ll deal with one of the standard objections atheists have when this topic comes up.  What brought God into existence?

The answer is simple.  Nothing brought him into existence.  He has always existed.  He is the uncaused cause.  Think about it.  You cannot have an infinite regression of causes.  It’s like having an infinite line of dominos falling one after another.  If you go back infinitely in time to try to find the first domino that started it all, you’d never find it because you’d have to cross an infinite amount of time to get to it which is impossible to do.  This would also mean that there you can’t have an infinite regression of causes.  Furthermore, this would mean there would never be a first cause.  If there is no first cause, then there can’t be a second, or a third, and so on; and you wouldn’t have any of them falling at all.  But since they are falling, there had to be a first cause--that itself was uncaused that started the whole thing moving at a specific time in the past.  So, too, with the universe.  It was caused to exist at a specific point in time.  The uncaused cause is God, who decided to create the universe and who, as the Bible says in Psalm 90:2, “is from everlasting to everlasting.”

 

 

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CARM ison