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by Messianic Rabbi Loren Jacobs
Congregation Shema Yisrael, Southfield, MI

The Argument From Intelligent Design

Creation declares that there is compelling evidence that God exists: The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night reveals knowledge (Psalm 19:1-2). That which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse (Romans 1:19-20).

There is no excuse for ignorance about God because there is sufficient evidence all around us. Just as we infer an intelligent designer for any product in which we discern evidence of purposeful adaption to some end, so too the universe is full of purposeful design, order and regularity in the "laws of nature" that operate by precise mathematical formulas, which tells us that there is an intelligent Designer.

If you were walking on a path through a forest and saw a beautiful watch on the path that was in working order and keeping accurate time, would you assume that it came together over millions of years by chance processes? Since the watch gives evidence of intelligent design, you would correctly assume that a watchmaker purposely made it. If a visitor from outside the universe visited Earth, he would likewise correctly assume that there was a Creator. Since the universe is more complex than anything made by man, it must have a Designer who is greater than man.

Kerby Anderson, the President of Probe Ministries, writes in a recent letter: There are "new advances in the area of intelligent design. Astronomers are discovering that we have a ‘just right’ universe. The discoveries remind me of the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. One chair was too big, one was too small, and one was ‘just right.’ Scientists have begun to uncover evidence that the universe is ‘just right.’ They have found 29 fine-tuned parameters to the universe which are ‘just right.’ These would include such things as the constants in equations for gravity, electromagnetism, strong and weak nuclear forces, and even the ratio of proton to electron mass. If any of these parameters were just a little off, the universe as we know it wouldn’t exist!

They have also discovered another 51 fine-tuned parameters for our galaxy, solar system, and planet. These would include: the distance from the sun, the size, temperature, and type of the sun, the Earth’s size, axial tilt, rotation speed and moon. They have even discovered the importance of planets like Jupiter and Saturn in our solar system. Of course, the probability of all these parameters coming together by chance is astronomical. Scientists calculating these probabilities are coming to the stark conclusion that the presence of any life in the universe is a highly improbable event.

Scientists are also making similar discoveries in the area of biology. Much of this has been documented in a book by Michael Behe entitled Darwin’s Black Box. Michael Behe (who is a biochemistry professor at Lehigh University) introduced the concept of ‘irreducible complexity.’ He says that something is irreducibly complex if it is composed of two or more necessary parts. If you remove one part, function is not just impaired but destroyed. The example Behe uses is the mousetrap. A mousetrap is irreducibly complex. It consists of a hammer, catch, spring, platform and holding bar. Remove one part of the mousetrap and it no longer functions. Thus, a mousetrap cannot be formed through natural selection.

In The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin said, ‘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. But I can find no such case.’ Michael Behe believes he has found many such cases. He has identified approximately 1000 molecular motors within a cell which are like his mousetrap illustration. They are irreducibly complex and present a significant challenge to the theory of evolution. Behe argues that in Darwin’s day, the cell was a mysterious black box. But the last forty years of research in molecular and cell biology have opened that box. Example after example of complex molecular machines have been discovered that invalidate the theory of natural selection as a mechanism for the evolution of life."

For a donation of any size, Probe Ministries is willing to send a CD of a presentation by Dr. Ray Bohlin on the Intelligent Design movement. The CD contains an audio presentation and his PowerPoint slides. Contact Probe Ministries, 1900 Firman Drive, Suite 100, Richardson TX 75081; phone number 972-480-0204;

The Argument From Morality, Conscience, And Belief In God

Human beings are inherently moral. I don’t mean that human beings are inherently good, but rather that human beings intuitively have an idea of what is good or right that seems to be independent of us. We live in a moral universe. If we violate these laws or morality we suffer. Where did this sense of right and wrong come from? Only from the values learned from the societies in which we live? Also, there is a universal belief in God or gods in every society among mankind. Even after seventy years of atheistic communism belief in God in the former Soviet Union couldn't be stamped out.

Where does this intuitive knowledge of God come from? Where does man's conscience come from? Isn't it logical to think that there is a Supreme Being who is moral, who created this moral order, and gave us conscience and an intuitive awareness of Himself? Rabbi Paul asserts: When the Gentiles who do not have the Torah, do instinctively the things of the Torah, these, not having the Torah, are a Torah to themselves, in that they show the work of the Torah written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness, and their thoughts alternatively accusing them or else defending them (Romans 2:14-15).

The Argument From Existence And Personality

The universe exists. It is not personal: it has no mind, will, nor emotion. Either the universe always existed, or it had a beginning. The discoveries of modern science are indicating that the universe isn't eternal, but in fact had a point of beginning. Either we believe that an impersonal, non-intelligent universe always existed, or it created itself out of nothing (which is logically inconsistent, since by definition it’s impossible for anything to create itself out of nothing, since nothing can’t produce something), or a personal God created the universe. Since there is mind, will, emotion and personality in the universe, in the form of human beings, doesn’t it make more sense that "in the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth?"

Pascal's Wager

Being an atheist is logically inconsistent. How could a human being ever know with 100 percent certainty that there was no God? What if God was beyond the universe and chose not to reveal Himself? One would have to be knowledgeable about the entire universe and beyond it to have any credibility when making such a claim. It is "the fool who has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’" The fool may have a Ph.D., but if he denies the existence of God, when there is so much evidence for His existence, knowing that human beings have such limited knowledge of the universe, and with so much to lose if he is wrong, he is displaying ultimate stupidity.

Pascal reasoned that we should treat the issue of the existence of God like we would betting on a game. When the odds that God exists or does not exist are even, then the smart man will gamble that God exists. This is a bet that all men must make - the game is in progress and a bet must be laid. Since the odds are even, reason is not violated by either choice. Since there are reasons for both choices, reason cannot determine which bet to make. Therefore the choice should be made pragmatically, based in terms of maximizing one's happiness. If one wagers that God exists and He does, then one has gained eternal life and infinite happiness. If He does not exist, you have lost nothing. On the other hand, if one wagers that God does not exist and He does in fact exist, then you have suffered infinite loss. If He does not exist, then you have gained nothing. Therefore the only prudent choice is to believe that God exists, and start searching for Him. Therefore the intelligent, wise, rational individual is open to the possibility that God exists, and begin to seek for Him. God promised the Jewish people, "you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29:13).

Messianic Rabbi Loren Jacobs
Congregation Shema Yisrael
Southfield, Michigan

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