The Double Standard of “Who Made God?”

Posted: June 5, 2015 in Blog Post
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“Oh yeah, well if God created everything, then who created God?”

It’s the question a Christian will almost inevitably have posed to them in any kind of interaction with an atheist or agnostic. In fact, I had this very thing asked of me a couple of days ago, and it seemed that my response was one that my friend had never thought of before.

When it comes to this topic, there is often a failure on the part of the atheist to recognize that he or she has to answer the problem from their worldview as well. In their attempt to push the Christian back into an uncomfortable position, the atheist opens themselves up to a similar problem that they usually are not aware of.

Both Christian theism and atheism have a stopping point. The furthest back one can go in the history of the universe from the Christian standpoint, is the timeless, space-less, immaterial, moral, intelligent, first cause – also known as God. For the atheist it is particles…….or a quantum vacuum……or whatever else they feel like inserting as their stopping point.

In either worldview, there is no going any further back than this point. For the Christian, this is not as big of a problem in my view, as our definition of God entails that he is un-created. He is the un-caused first cause of all that exists. Asking who created God is like asking what the colour blue smells like. It is the wrong kind of question.

Most atheists I have talked to don’t seem to like this answer. It seems to be frustrating to many that we don’t feel the need to answer the question. This was the response that I received from the atheist I was speaking with, and our interaction continued from there.

“Oh yeah, well if God created everything, then who created God?”

No one created God. God has always existed. The definition of God is someone who is uncreated.”

Oh Come on! Someone must have made him?

“Well I don’t think so, but I have a question for you: On your view of things, what is the first thing that ever existed? What caused everything else to come into existence?”

“I don’t know. Just matter and energy I guess.”

“What created that?”

“Nothing did.”

“Ah so you see, we both have a point where we can’t go back any further don’t we? Seems like a bit of a double standard to think I am the only one with a problem.”

“I guess I never thought of it that way.”

“Most people don’t, and it seems at this point that the only way to test which view is correct is to start with the first thing – either an intelligent creator or unconscious matter and energy – and play out the implications of each. The one that most closely matches reality is likely the better explanation. If unconscious random particles and energy are what started everything, then it makes no sense that we live in a universe like ours. Actually, it makes no sense that you and I exist at all. Do you really think that random particles clashing in the universe are capable of creating life, let alone human beings with consciousness and morality? Are you aware that the best scientists in the world cannot create even the simplest life from non-life? How could mindless particles do what scientific geniuses cannot?”

“That’s a good point. It doesn’t really make sense.”

“No, it certainly doesn’t from what I can tell. However, if we start with an uncreated mind, outside of time, who is all powerful, perfectly moral, and intelligent beyond our comprehension, then we should not be surprised at all by what we see around us. The universe’s existence, our existence, our consciousness, our sense of morality, etc. all fit perfectly within the Christian worldview, but not so well into yours.”

“Well, you have certainly given me something to think about….”

This is just another reminder of why a Christian’s ability to defend their faith is so important. By being prepared with more than just an emotional response to my friend’s objections, I was able to put a stone in his shoe and get him thinking about God in a way he never had before.

As a Christian, one long look at the expanse of all that reality contains, is more than enough to show me that my belief in God is not in vain. I don’t have to take the wildly counter-intuitive position of believing that all the complex life around me is an accident caused by inanimate particles. I don’t have to believe that everything popped into existence out of nothing for no reason. I can simply look at the way God described the world He made, and see that reality matches that description. The atheist on the other hand does not have this ability, and must explain everything as one big accident that was caused by nothing.

If there is one skill I have found most useful in explaining these realities to others, it has been learning to point out double standards with objections like “Who made God?” Don’t let atheists get away with thinking they are the only ones with some “splaining” to do. They have a worldview, just like you do. Making them try to explain theirs, might just show them that they have never really thought it through in the first place.

 

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Comments
  1. mclasper says:

    God, if he exists, was never created and existed indefinitely (in this case eternally = space and time do exist, indefinitely = space and time do not exist, so therefor no time passes) Why can’t the matter or energy that caused the big bang exist eternally?

    This reminds me of a quote from an unknown source: “If you are content in believing in an uncaused deity, I am content in believing in an uncaused universe. Your deity does not need a cause? Then neither does the universe! I can demonstrate that the universe exists, can you demonstrate that your deity exists?”

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    • defendingyourfaith says:

      The problem is not that the universe exists, which it obviously does. The problem is that all the scientific evidence thus far shows it had a beginning. Matter and energy did not cause the Big Bang, they were caused by it. Therefor it would seem that whatever caused the universe to come into existence was spaceless, timeless, immaterial, and very powerful. I would include intelligent as well based on the finely tuned parameters that have been observed for life to exist.

      The main thrust of my article was not argue cosmology however, but simply point to the double standard raised by the question, “Who made God?” If you believe that matter is the starting point, with nothing before it, then I can believe that God is the starting point, with nothing before Him. We can not go back any further in either of our worldviews, and so must test the starting point by the implications it has on the rest of reality. The question “who made God?” is irrelevant. Who made matter?

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    • mclasper says:

      The question of what caused the Big Bang is for the most part unanswered. Scientists do not yet know what caused it, and the big bang does not explain its own cause. We can only make guesses and hypothesis at the time, and perhaps we will ever know. There is no evidence for us to observe what caused the big bang, so it might forever remain a mystery.
      Likewise we do not know what made the expansion begin. The hypothesis I support is that all of the matter of the universe was not ‘created’ in the big bang, it existed indefinitely within the singularity. This means that some sort of reaction would need to occur, probably on a quantum level, to create the sudden expansion.

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