William Lane Craig, one of the best known Christian apologists, gives five reasons for believing in the existence of God:
First, God provides the best explanation of the origin of the universe.
Given the scientific evidence we have about our universe and its
origins, and bolstered by arguments presented by philosophers for
centuries, it is highly probable that the universe had an absolute
beginning. Since the universe, like everything else, could not have
merely popped into being without a cause, there must exist a
transcendent reality beyond time and space that brought the universe
into existence. This entity must therefore be enormously powerful. Only a
transcendent, unembodied mind suitably fits that description.
Second, God provides the best explanation for the fine-tuning of the universe. Contemporary
physics has established that the universe is fine-tuned for the
existence of intelligent, interactive life. That is to say, in order
for intelligent, interactive life to exist, the fundamental constants
and quantities of nature must fall into an incomprehensibly narrow
life-permitting range. There are three competing explanations of this
remarkable fine-tuning: physical necessity, chance, or design. The first
two are highly implausible, given the independence of the fundamental
constants and quantities from nature's laws and the desperate manoeuvres
needed to save the hypothesis of chance. That leaves design as the best
Third, God provides the best explanation of objective moral values and duties.
Even atheists recognize that some things, for example, the Holocaust,
are objectively evil. But if atheism is true, what basis is there for
the objectivity of the moral values we affirm? Evolution? Social
conditioning? These factors may at best produce in us the subjective feeling
that there are objective moral values and duties, but they do nothing
to provide a basis for them. If human evolution had taken a different
path, a very different set of moral feelings might have evolved. By
contrast, God Himself serves as the paradigm of goodness, and His
commandments constitute our moral duties. Thus, theism provides a better
explanation of objective moral values and duties.
Fourth, God provides the best explanation of the historical facts concerning Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.
Historians have reached something of consensus that the historical
Jesus thought that in Himself God’s Kingdom had broken into human
history, and He carried out a ministry of miracle-working and exorcisms
as evidence of that fact. Moreover, most historical scholars agree that
after His crucifixion Jesus’ tomb was discovered empty by a group of
female disciples, that various individuals and groups saw appearances of
Jesus alive after His death, and that the original disciples suddenly
and sincerely came to believe in Jesus’ resurrection despite their every
predisposition to the contrary. I can think of no better explanation of
these facts than the one the original disciples gave: God raised Jesus
from the dead.
Fifth, God can be personally known and experienced. The proof of the
pudding is in the tasting. Down through history Christians have found
through Jesus a personal acquaintance with God that has transformed
The good thing is that atheists tend to be very passionate people and
want to believe in something. If they would only put aside the slogans
for a moment and reexamine their worldview in light of the best
philosophical, scientific, and historical evidence we have today, then
they, too, would find Christmas worth celebrating!
Something to think about as we enter a new year.