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Does God even exist?

"Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made." John 1.3

It is all very well to ponder the nature of God but what answer have we for those who dispute his very existence? Friedrich Nietzsche gleefully proclaimed the death of God, while Jean-Paul Sartre insisted that humanity needed to dispense with faith in a divine being in order to grow up and assume responsibility for ourselves.

Various arguments have been advanced in support of theistic faith. At one level one could argue that merely talking about God grants him a certain reality. But that would put God in the same category as Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. Another approach is to say that God is proved is the relationship which believers have with him, in the same way that love exists within a family or between a couple. This too doesn't go the whole distance in proving the reality of God beyond those who choose to believe in him, reducing the Almighty to a private deity. Yet one could say that if God does exist as the ultimate and supreme being then it is no more possible to prove his existence than it is to prove the existence of the universe.

Because it is not possible to conceive of a situation in which the universe is absent, if God is the "ground of all being" in his absence everything would cease to exist too. So much for logic - but how to convey it convincingly? This has exercised the greatest minds and produced a series of classical arguments for the proof of God's existence. Despite none being completely satisfactory (otherwise there would be no atheists or agnostics!) they deserve our attention because of the insights they provide in how we think about God...



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