What Follows if God Does not Exist?
by guest blogger Randy Everist
This is not an apologetic argument for non-believers. That is, I fully expect some or even all of the premises to be denied by non-Christians. This is more of an “intellectual devotion” time. I am examining the claim that God is logically necessary, and without God, nothing would exist, neither would anything be true. I claim if God is the ultimate explanation of why anything is true, then the lack of that explanation necessitates nothing is true. But then it would be true something is true. Hence, the conditional is impossible.
It’s not merely the antecedent’s being false that makes this problematic, but rather the antecedent’s being logically impossible that creates the problem. What we are really saying is the state of affairs of nothing being true cannot exist. But if God is logically necessary and the ground of all being/truth, then that’s just what it means: it means there is no truth without God (else God just happens to be the source of this truth, rather than being the source of necessity). I don’t find calling the impossibility of his non-existence to be very controversial, for that is all it means to say that one is logically necessary. Consider the following argument:
1. If God is logically necessary, then he cannot fail to exist.
2. If God is the source of all truth, then he is so necessarily.
3. God is logically necessary.
4. God is the source of all truth.
5. Therefore, God cannot fail to exist.
6. Therefore, God is the source of all truth necessarily.
It follows analytically from (5-6) that:
7. If God did not exist, then truth does not exist.
8. Truth does exist.
9. Therefore, God exists.
If one questions (7), consider a parallel premise:
10. If numbers do not exist, then mathematics do not exist.
By (10) I mean the concept of numbers. Yet we can use and conceptualize numbers and movements all the time: the very numbering of the premise makes the antecedent false. Further, most people believe the antecedent is necessarily false, and hence impossible to be true. Yet it seems to be true as a datum that mathematics would not exist without numbers, even if it is impossible for mathematics to fail to exist! In the same way, I maintain it is true that without God, nothing would be true. The Christian should embrace this as a thought for devotional reflection.