Compare God and Baal

A reply to the first bonus proof of God is Imaginary.

In the first of three bonus “proofs” added to God is Imaginary, the anonymous author compares God and the pagan deity Baal using the story found in 1 Kings 18:16-40. The story concludes with Baal being proved imaginary by Elijah and the prophets of Baal being killed.

On that premise, the following conclusion is drawn:

What should we do today when, upon calling on God to show himself, nothing ever happens? As we saw in proof #1 and proof #2, praying to God has absolutely no effect. Asking God to display any sort of supernatural force in public (like, say, lighting a fire) has absolutely no effect. God has absolutely no effect in our world today.

What we should do is exactly what the people in the Bible did with Baal. The lack of any evidence for God’s existence should lead us to the obvious conclusion that God is imaginary, just like Baal is imaginary.

This assumes that God has no effect on the world around us. If one accepts methodological naturalism, as this critic does, then one would conclude exactly that–God is imaginary. But methodological naturalism has its own problems, and is not the worldview that most people accept.

God has had a profound effect on the world around us, and those effects are chronicled for us in the Bible.

The apostle Paul has said that men are “without excuse” for not seeing the evidence in favor of God’s existence. That is, the very universe in which we live.

This proof further assumes that because we know a little bit more than the ancient people about the world around us, that God somehow becomes unnecessary. The ancient people are explicitly called “inhuman barbarians.” The question is this: do we really expect that anything has a supernatural explanation, or does God exercise his sovereignty over natural processes? I would say the latter, and the Bible backs me up:

I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning  and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,  and I will accomplish all my purpose,’ calling a bird of prey from the east, the man of my counsel from a far country. I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass; I have purposed, and I will do it. (Is 46:9-11, emphasis added)

Given these facts, it is unreasonable to conclude that God does not exist based on the fact that we see natural processes at work. We expect to see that.