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For many of years, there has been a great debate on the existence of God. Most people conclude that, in one way or another, there is no prove to show His existence. Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) was one of the most influential opponents of Christianity. In March 1927, Professor Russell delivered a speech titled, “Why I am not a Christian.” This was the onset of his objection for the Christian faith. Russell believes that Christianity along with other religions is both untrue and harmful. He also has opposes teaching children aspects of religion. He argues that religion prevents children from thinking clearly and prevents them from co-operating with others who have a different opinion from what they have. Russell feels that be a Christian he has to believe in God and immortality, but he says he does not believe in God and in immortality. He also argues that all those who proclaim Christianity believe that Christ was divine and the wisest man. To him, Christ was neither the wisest man nor the best man that ever lived. Back in the days, the existence of God was not an issue of debate. His presence and His existence was evident from the miracles and faith of believers. Time and advancements have created doubts in the minds of many. The truth is that God exists, and Christianity is a true religion.
Majority of people believe in the existence of God using their common intelligence. There is no empirical proof on the existence of God. Throughout the existence of man, there has always been a belief in the existence of a superhuman personal power. Logically speaking, there is an adequate cause for every effect. This is the basis of all cause. Basing on the origin of the universe, how can we explain its origin? Its source must have either been someone’s creation or self-created. If someone created the universe, it has to be someone of a nature different from material. Material cannot create itself, therefore, the source of the universe is a great thinker, and this is the mind of God.
Russell’s argument on the existence of God falls in different categories. These are cosmological, teleological, and moral. In cosmological argument states, that there has to be a cause for the universe and the cause is most likely God. In teleological argument, it states that the nature in which organizes himself daily is not accidental. There must be someone responsible, and it must be God. Moral argument states that God must be the source of moral standards. It also states that moral injustice of history needs rectification by post-historical judgement.
In cosmological type, Russell argues that if Christians believe in God who needs no cause for his actions than he is also right to believe in the universe that needs no cause. In the teleological argument, Russell states that the world does not need a lawgiver to have laws. To him the world is not impressive as it has evils. In moral argument, he feels that humans do not need God for morality. According to Russell, there must be a standard for morality and evil apart from God.
There are several other proofs for the existence of God. Life itself is a mystery that no one can comprehend naturally. The human body is an organized machine with over sixty trillion cells. Each cell is an industry with numerous components that working harmony with great skill. We cannot take this as an accident, there has to be God for all this to take place. An average adult has 206 bones. These provide an internal framework for the body protecting the crucial organs. They function as attachments for muscles and produce chemical elements for the welfare of the body. The body does not build itself by nature. This is also another proof for the existence of God. The circulatory system is a body pipeline system of about one hundred thousand miles around the body. It consists of arteries, veins, and capillaries, which provide the body cells with food, oxygen and remove wastes. This system cannot function on its own by chance. The nervous system contains the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. Transformation of information takes place by nerve impulses at a speed of 300 miles per hour from the brain to various parts of the body (Jackson).
Lastly, we may say that if God exists, and created the human family, we expect that this was a former communication with those made in his image. The truth is that God spoke at this time, and he has made concrete communications. More revelation on the existence of God is through David the King of Israel. He declared, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows his works” . The visible universe testifies of the power and wisdom of its creator.
Revolution of the earth on its orbit, which is about six hundred million miles long, around the sun takes place at a speed of one thousand miles per minute. At times, the earth is closer to the sun that at other times. When the earth is closer to the sun, it moves faster than when it is far away. As the earth moves, it digresses from a straight line one-ninth of an inch every eighteen miles. If the turn would be one tenth, the earth would freeze, and if it were one-eighth, the earth would burn. Therefore, there is a balance. This is obvious a creation of God.
To understand who God is, and if he exists, requires more than abstraction. In the olden days, God spoke to selected persons like Noah, Abraham, and Moses directly. Through them, he communicated his will. Through Moses, there was a written law handed to the Hebrew nation. The Hebrew was selected to influence the nations of the world, and they did it admirably.
Looking at Christianity as a religion, Russell feels that most people believe in God simply because from their childhood, they have learnt to do so. He goes on to point that through this belief most individual have a feeling of protection. Russell feels that religion is based on fear. To him, this is fear of the unknown. People believe out of fear and not on personal intellectual basis of their faith.
If Christianity is true, then there is no problem for Russell to apply for logic. Christians do not believe that there can be exhaustion in man’s understanding. Man can by no means perfectly knows himself, the world, or God. However, man can understand the world because God has created man in such a way that the world reveals the truth to man. God has given man a special revelation power so that he could learn from creation and be able to make correct interpretations.
Russell rejects the biblical view, but at the same time he has his own rational view of the biblical interpretations. Christianity teaches of the ethical absolutes that transcend time and place. Russell objects all this. Christ spoke of the presence of hell. Russell reputed this stating that anyone with full humanity cannot believe in everlasting punishment. Hell is a sign of cruelty. Russell acknowledged the importance of punishment to evil doers but he feels that Hell is extreme punishment. Russell did not agree with the story where Christ cast out demons and send them to the swine. According to Russell, casting evil spirits into the swine is destruction of animals, which is part of creation.
Despite the views of Russell on Christianity, it is a true religion. In Christianity, salvation is termed as a gift given by God. In other religions, one obtains salvation through hard work and good thoughts. It is only in Christianity that the leader dies for the sins of the believers. This action demonstrates eternal life we can have. Another important aspect of Christianity is that it is the only religion where love including love for enemies is the major theme. Further to that, it is only Christianity that assures one of heaven and eternal life. It is only in Christianity that God personally suffers with the people. One can be born a Jew, born a Hindu, but not born a Christian. Being born into a Christian family does not make one a Christian. Therefore, Christianity was created by God and it is a unique religion with aspects and characteristics central to Christianity alone but different in other religions.