Falsify, Brother! (Amen?)
As I’ve been discussing with Atheists on Twitter the issues of God and presuppositions, an issue which has arisen a few times is the issue of falsifiability. The issue if often raised in the form of rejection of supernatural causes, as the supernatural is not falsifiable. What this means in more plain terms is that the issue is not able to be proven false by means of examination or testing.
Therefore, since the supernatural is unfalsifiable, it is not a valid way to understand anything (hence the pink unicorns, flying teapots, monsters of various pasta shapes and sizes, etc…). Since the supernatural (i.e. God) cannot be falsified, and is rendered unfit for a scientific source, then there obviously is only one way left to go–atheistic naturalism.
A Different System
The problem with this comes in the fact that with Christianity, you are dealing with a much different system of trust than with any other religion. With other religions, the followers are led to trust the words of a man who has heard from their god, and the people are then responsible to trust in the words of the leader and his experience with the god. Many atheists would say that this is the same within Christianity, but it isn’t, based upon one simple understanding–our Witness has been raised from the dead.
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All the other religions have the same problem inherent within their system. Their prophet or leader has spent his days upon earth long ago, and has gone from this world, leaving only their words behind. The difference with Christianity, is that the Prophet rose from the dead before He left, and gave His followers even more words to read beyond the point of His death.
See, Jesus Christ wasn’t just a prophet who heard from God on occasion and wrote down what He heard as best as He could understand it. Instead, He said things like, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30) and, “before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:58). Now, the people of Jesus’ day understood what these claims meant pretty well, as in both cases, they picked up stones to kill Him on the spot. John 10:32 says, “The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.”
Declaring yourself God is a pretty big claim, and the Jews didn’t take it very well. They understood that the only way to get rid of the problem, and to falsify His claims was to kill Him, and that’s what they did. Jesus was crucified, and it wasn’t underground. He was crucified outside. In public. Naked. Dead.
Jesus was crucified before all the people of the nation, and the many thousands (possibly hundreds of thousands) of witnesses who would have been in Jerusalem for Passover at the time would probably have been able to falsify the account of Jesus’ death if it were not the case that He was indeed dead (He did travel around as a witness to the fact…). Or it could have been one of the Roman soldiers who watched Him die (maybe the one who thrust the spear through His side?) who could have falsified His death with a, “He’s not really dead, just in a deep coma-like state.” Any one of these people could have testified about this, but they didn’t…