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Flashcards in Believing In God Deck (25):


Not being sure whether God exists



Believing that God does not exist



When your life is changed by giving yourself to God


Free will

The idea that human beings are free to make their own choices



Something which seems to break a law of science and makes you think only God could have done it


Moral evil

Actions done by humans which cause suffering


Natural evil

Things which cause suffering but have nothing to do with humans



The feeling of the presence of something greater than you



The belief that God is all-good



The belief that God is all powerful



The belief that God is all-powerful



An attempt to contact God, usually through words


Ways of Christians aid Religious A bringing

• some Christians baptise their children at a young age
• the child is usually taught to pray when they go to church
• families usually celebrate Christmas and Easter (and the meaning of those festivals around them)
• some parents arrange for their children to attend 'Sunday school' where there is encouragement to be a good Christians and lead a Christian life


What can a religious experience do?

Can convince people that God exists without an religious upbringing


Examples of religious experiences

• numinous - for some this some thing that takes their breath away, this could be felt by looking up at a starry sky and convinced that God is behind it all
• prayer - is an important and personal way for some people to communicate with God. If a prayer is answered then it can strengthen someone's faith in God
• miracles - can also convince people that God exists e.g. Surviving a plane crash
• happens after an event where people believe they have experienced God and want to commit their life to God e.g. St. Paul on the way to Damascus


The design argument

• Several hundred years ago William Paley said that if somebody happened to find a watch and had never seen them before, they would be astounded.
• the fact that finding something so tiny with lots of mechanisms inside it had been made by someone very special (a designer) and could have not been made by accident
• Paley said that the same argument could be said about the universe which is even more complicated than the watch!
• the universe must have been designed by an extremely clever being, not by accident. The only possible designer of the universe must be God - therefore God exists. E.g.s of design = DNA, evolution


Causation argument

• things do not happen by themselves; e.g. If we drop an egg it may smash (the cause would be us dropping it - the effect would be the smashing of the egg)
• the causation argument says that the existence of the universe proves that God exists
• if the universe has a beginning then someone must have caused it, it did not happen by accident so something must have caused it and brought it into existence - this is God therefore God exists


Scientific explanation of the world

Science can explain how the universe began without the need for God e.g. The Big Bang says how the universe began and evolution explains where animals and humans came from


How do Christians respond to scientific explanations of the world

1. Science is true but God controlled the process e.g. Not strictly due to chance
2. Science and the bible are correct. Main point me fit e.g. 7 days of creations could be 7 periods of time
3. Science is wrong! God made the world look older apparent age theory
4. Unanswered prayers


Arguments against God - problem of evil

Christians believe that God is all-powerful, all-loving and all-knowing so evil should not exist. Because evil does exist it leads to a number of possibilities:
1) God is simply not powerful enough to stop evil
2) God does not know that it is happening
3) God simply does not love us enough to stop evil to stop the evil. Christians retell us that he can do all things so God allows not exists or he would stop evil!


How Christians respond to evil and suffering

• God created people with free will and because people are by programmed like computers l, they can choose whether they want to do good or evil. When they choose evil, suffering happens
• To some Christians life is a test. The way people react to the suffering and evil determines whether they will go to heaven or hell in the afterlife. For example job
• others say that God works in mysterious ways and he has reasons for letting evil and suffering happened, but humans will never be able to understand the mind of God


How do Christians respond to evil and suffering?

• prayer: (asking God to help those who are suffering – this type of prayer is good in the session and is found in nearly all types of Christian worship).
• Service: (actively helping those who suffer) many Christians out in hospitals and hospices, organise food and clothing for homeless in the UK, raise money to help less developed countries, etc. Some charities such as children's society to help children from broken homes


Summary of Bruce Almighty

Bruce feels that life is not fair and badmouths God. God gives him his powers. Bruce all sorts out his own life but things are starting to go wrong. Eventually he can no longer cope as a town falls apart due to him giving everyone what they want. In the end he realises that his life was not that bad.


How does Bruce Almighty support gods existence

1.even with God's power is Bruce messes up a.G.the town riots as everyone wins $17 on the lottery. As such it shows how hard God's job is and says that we can't all get what we want
2. Gods existence is never questioned. It acknowledges from the start that God is real.
3. Shows the problems with free will. God exists and bad things happen is because humans may bad decisions and choose to do evil things
4. Shows that God hears or bread and response to Sam. Shows what I got does not answer all press (which is a major reason for doubting his existence).


How Bruce Almighty God does not exist

1. Ultimately he answers Bruce's prayers but throughout the film his rude to God. If he is helped then why not help others.
2. Mocks a lot of the miracles in the Bible e.g. turning water into wine, walking on water.
3. Sure as God in human form. Christians believe that God is everywhere. This is not possible if God is human