by Sean McDowell
Some time ago I was speaking on the evidence for intelligent design at a family camp in Michigan. Immediately after my talk—in which I discussed the evidence for design from DNA, fine-tuning, and more—a woman approached me and asked, “The evidence is really powerful. Do you think we will ever get to a point when people will have to concede there’s a God?”
This is an important question that I have been asked on a number of occasions. And it deserves a thoughtful response. Her underlying assumption seemed to be that if people hear the compelling evidence for design, then they would believe. In other words, unbelief is the result of simply not having enough evidence.
While many people have been drawn to Christ through encountering the evidence for God from nature, conscience, Scripture, the miraculous and more, conversion is not a matter solely of intellectual assent. The call to follow Jesus is not merely to logically believe certain facts, but to turn to God in repentance and to love God with your heart, soul, strength, and mind (Mark 12:28-34).
Why Not Believe?
If someone were presented with evidence for the identity of Jesus as the Messiah, why would he or she resist? While there are a number of different reasons, consider an example from Mark 3:22-30. In this story, the scribes were trying to trick Jesus by claiming that his powers came from “Beelzebub” (Satan) rather than God.
Jesus responds with a story about how a divided house cannot stand. In other words, if Jesus’ power were from Satan, why would he cast out demons? Such a divided house would crumble. And then Jesus warns them not to “blaspheme the Holy Spirit,” which, given the context, means claiming that Jesus is empowered by Satan rather than God.
Interestingly, the scribes do not question the power of Jesus over demons. In other words, they accept that Jesus did miracles and could cast out demons. Rather, they question the source…
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