For centuries people have tried to settle the issue of whether or not God exists. One of the methods used by Christians in the past and present has been to formulate philosophical “proofs” for the existence of God. There are serious problems with some of the traditional approaches to this endeavor.
Traditional proofs for the existence of God do not require that God exists. Instead, they show that the existence of God may be possible or even probable. God is not seen as the only ultimate all-conditioning cause of everything that happens.
In the Garden of Eden Adam and Eve interpreted creation through the things that God told them directly. God is the only Being who knows all of the facts of existence and has properly interpreted them. Humanity knows things as they are only when it thinks God’s thoughts after Him. Traditional proofs for the existence of God assume that humanity can understand the facts without God. It is not true that looking at God’s revelation in nature can be properly understood without reference to God. It is also calling God a liar when a proof is used that starts with nature and then comes to the conclusion that God’s existence is “probable”. This is because God’s revelation of Himself in nature is clear and it is man who sinfully concludes that it is not so that only “probability” is assumed. God has provided abundant and clear evidence for His existence and tells us so in His Word.
Traditional proofs for the existence of God deny the self-attesting authority of the Word of God. Arguments from human reasoning and experience are thought to be able to properly judge whether or not God’s Word is God’s Word. God’s Word is thought to be unable to identify itself as God’s Word, so it is up to man to decide what is God’s Word and what is not. The authority of scripture takes second place to the authority of humanity. How then can God’s Word be the final authority if humanity gets to make the decision as to whether or not it is what it says it is?
The idea that human reason was left untouched by the results of the Fall of humanity is unbiblical and a poor foundation for communicating with unbelievers. Humanity is created in the image of God and is not independent of God, but traditional proofs for the existence of God often deny this in methodology. In reality humanity has to think God’s thoughts after Him or else have no knowledge at all.
Humanity is totally depraved, meaning that every part of every man and woman was affected by the Fall. This includes thoughts and attitudes as well. The problem with humanity is not primarily an intellectual one; it is primarily a moral one. Traditional proofs do not take this into account as they should. The grace of God is the only way that anyone can be saved and remade in a way that knowledge is possible. People cannot use their reasoning and finally “find God” and jump into believing in Him because human reasoning has been corrupt and immoral ever since Eve thought of herself as an ultimate authority in weighing the Word of God against that of the serpent. A right use of reason comes only through salvation by the grace of God.