Imagine sitting in a cozy coffee shop called Credo House, sipping on a Luther Latte, a delightful vanilla latte exclusive to this quaint establishment. You strike up a conversation with an atheist friend over your warm caffeine. Eager to share the hope and love of Jesus, little do you know this chat will take an unexpected turn…
You are discussing your faith and the transformative power of the Gospel with your atheist friend and he sits quietly and nods politely. You believe you are having an effect as you share some of the ways God has brought you hope in the most despairing times. Drunk with enthusiasm, you believe you are getting to him. Little did you know, he was just biding his time. As you explain how God is the answer to everything, he suddenly puts his hand up signaling for you to stop. You think he is going to ask how to accept Christ as his personal Lord and Savior, but he throws you a curb ball.
Many Christians face doubt when presented with the God of the Gaps argument. But fear not, for we’re about to uncover an ironic twist in this insufficient answer.
Five Responses to the God of the Gaps Argument
1: Remain Calm: Acknowledge the Wonders of Science
Science has undeniably filled many gaps in our understanding. We’ve benefited from countless advancements—from medicine to tech. However, this progress doesn’t negate God. Christians see science not as an adversary, but as a tool to unveil the wonders of God’s creation. In other words, Christianity is not afraid of science.
2: Give Credit Where Credit is Due: Christians Created Science!
It’s essential to emphasize that many of the early pioneers of modern science were devout Christians who played a pivotal role in closing the gaps in our understanding. Mention individuals like Isaac Newton, who was not only a scientist but also a devout Christian. Newton saw his scientific pursuits as a means of exploring the intricacies of God’s creation. Highlight that the scientific method, a cornerstone of modern science, was developed by individuals who believed in a rational, orderly universe created by God. In essence, Christians played a central role in the birth and evolution of scientific exploration.
Furthermore, clarify that the scientific method, with its emphasis on empirical observation and systematic investigation, emerged from the assumption of an orderly universe created by God. It wasn’t science squeezing God out; instead, it was God introducing science to provide a deeper understanding of how He created the natural and miraculous worlds within the context of His universe.
3: Define Faith: Everyone Has Faith in Their System
Emphasize the fundamental role of faith in the very foundations of reasoning and scientific inquiry. Acknowledge that even those who consider themselves rational and grounded in the scientific method still place their faith in essential principles. This includes faith in the reliability of the scientific method, faith in the consistency of the laws of logic, and faith in the superiority of objective conclusions. Highlight that faith is not a blind leap into the dark but a step into the light of understanding. Faith, whether in scientific principles or religious beliefs, is an integral part of human experience, guiding us toward a deeper comprehension of the world.
4: Flip the Script: The Science of the Gaps
Let’s flip the narrative with a novel concept: the Science of the Gaps. Science, too, grapples with its knowledge gaps. Consider life’s origin, the resurrection of Christ, near-death experiences, or the universe’s fine-tuning. What about consciousness, purpose, or morality?—science is yet to meaningfully elucidate these mysteries. Or, as I argue below, Christians have no gaps while atheists have no holes filled at all without God
5: Applaud the Magician: Science Without God is Magic
Engage in a thoughtful comparison between religious faith and godless scientific inquiry. Address the common accusation of those who believe in God as having a “Magic man in the sky” who provides a full-stop answer to all questions. Emphasize that, in reality, it’s the atheistic scientific perspective that must resort to magic. While theists acknowledge the belief in a higher power capable of initiating existence, godless science is without a possible answer. In attempting to explain how something can come from nothing without any reason at all, how life emerges from non-life, or how intelligence can be birthed from non-intelligence, atheists find themselves on enigmatic terrain. Here is where the irony exists once again: Faced with gaps in scientific comprehension, skeptics inadvertently lean on ‘magical’ explanations.
Conclusion: God and the Ultimate Explanation of Everything
In the end, one thing becomes abundantly clear. The unbeliever does not reject God because the Christian answers are insufficient while their atheistic answers fill all the gaps.
Imagine a scenario where this atheist in our story stands before God resolute in following his methodology. He asks God all the questions that science has yet to answer and those that create all the gaps that Christians have filled with God. God, in His infinite knowledge and understanding, does not say, “I don’t know how I raised Jesus from the dead or how I created everything from nothing. I just did.” He actually provides answers, sharing the divine formulas and methods he used to create and sustain the universe and raise Jesus from death’s grip. Yet, instead of embracing this revelation as a confirmation of God’s existence, the scientist turns to a fellow human and exclaims, ‘I just figured it out! I don’t need God to fill those gaps anymore. Science can explain it.” Such is the stubbornness of some skeptics. No answer will satisfy.
God isn’t just a gap-filler; He’s the very foundation of our knowledge and understanding. Science is his and impossible without him.