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RE:QUEST

A space for resources to help RE teachers and their students explore the Christian faith

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Christian Responses to Non-religious Views

The design argument

Non-religious Attitudes to the Design Argument

Non-religious people, such as atheists and humanists, believe that the design argument doesn't offer proof of the existence of God. This is because they have a tendency to only believe things that can be proved scientifically

  • There is no real evidence to prove that the world was planned or designed.
  • There is a lot of evidence that the world happened by chance.
  • Yes, the world is complex, but that doesn't mean there has to be a designer.
  • Even if there was verifiable evidence for design, there is no proof that God was the designer.
  • The idea that God created the world is outdated; science gives a better explanation about the origin of the universe, such as the big bang theory and the theory of evolution.
  • The world is so imperfect; if God designed it then surely he'd have created one which didn't have evil and suffering in it? Why would a good God create volcanoes and horrific weather conditions?

Christian Responses

Many Christians believe science and the design argument can complement each other. Science actually supports the design argument. Some Christians believe that God created the world through the big bang, and that evolution was a process that God put into place.

They point to concrete evidence of design, such as Fibonacci's golden ratio. Whilst accepting that this is not scientific evidence of God as the designer, they would suggest that there is nobody powerful enough to have designed the world but God.

Furthermore, they argue that scientific theories around the origin of the universe are just theories. Although there is evidence to support them, these theories - the big bang and evolution - are not actually provable either. 

Non-religious people might argue that there is 'bad design' in the world, however, problems in the environment are sometimes down to the poor way that humans have treated the planet.

Additionally, Christians believe that God cannot be fully understood. We can't know everything that God has planned for the world, therefore we have to trust him, reaching out to those who experience suffering.