A Second Look at Design

I recently heard a skeptic dismiss out of hand the idea that there is evidence of design in nature that supports the existence of God. He considered it an already-refuted argument that could be safely ignored. Can it? Let’s work through that today.

Despite the dismissals of skeptics, the argument for God’s existence based on evidence of design persists. Why is that? Perhaps it’s that detection of design is so intuitive. Design tends to stand out to us because we can recognize the twin hallmarks of design: choice and purpose. We can see that something is a certain way instead of an alternate way; and even when we can’t recognize the purpose of something, we can still often recognize that something has a purpose. If you’ve ever cleaned out an old storage shed and found some unidentified antique tool, you might have thought to yourself, “I can’t imagine what this was used for, but it clearly was made for some specific task.” We also see this in archaeology when people find artifacts and don’t assume they are natural formations. We see it in games of chance where we become suspicious when someone “happens” to make all the right choices and achieve the very beneficial purpose of winning lots of money. We begin to suspect a designed – or “rigged” – outcome. Crop circles were another instance of rightly suspecting design, whether you believe them to be of alien or human origin.

Recently, I was walking in the woods behind an old abandoned industrial facility, and came across the artifact in the picture above…
 

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A Second Look at Design