A Legal Proof for the Existence of God (Part I)
The most compelling evidence for the existence of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker is not our places of worship, but the human quest for justice. From the earliest legal codes of Ur-Nammu (2050 BC) and Hammurabi (1754 BC), through the Ten Commandments and the Edicts of Asoka (250 BC), to our modern day charters and declarations of human rights and freedoms, the quest for justice reveals a search for a Supreme law and a Supreme Lawmaker.
The principles underlying these various endeavours to establish justice are consistent throughout history, even though the consequences for transgression reflect the historical times.
This series of articles will adduce the evidence to show that the reason for the remarkable universal consistency in the underlying principles of justice is to be found in the way God chose to reveal Himself to us, and how that enables us to know His Law and His Will. Later articles will also address the questions of good and evil, the origin of human consciousness, and the inevitability of a judgment for our actions.
The aim of this first article is to outline the arguments to provide a general reference point for subsequent articles.
What we are
Human beings are in every respect a manifestation of the fundamental laws that govern the universe. But those laws are also imprinted into our brains in mathematical form, and our brains have mechanisms to convert the mathematical raw data into words, images and concepts.
One of those mechanisms converts the raw mathematical data into moral principles. We will refer to this mechanism as the ‘neurological moral network’.
It is this network that tells us that freedom is the Fundamental Principle of Morality and Justice. And it is this Principle that speaks to us of a Supreme Lawmaker that we call God.
In other words, if there is a God, then He must have chosen to reveal Himself to us through mathematical principles which we have an ability to comprehend. Most of us act on this mathematical data subconsciously. There are some, however, like the Prophets, who could consciously convert this raw data into an accurate account of the origin of the universe and life, and God’s omnipotent hand in that creation.
A good analogy would be a digital TV. The digital code is fed into the TV where it is converted into words and images. Very few of us would be able to make any sense of the digital code itself – we just hear the words and see the pictures.
In order to understand how the Principle of Freedom speaks to us of God, we first need to consider what that Principle is, and what obligations operate to limit it.
The Principle of Freedom and the limiting obligations
The Principle of Freedom is that no one person, or group of people, has any natural authority over any other person.
But that principle has a reciprocal obligation – ‘if no other human being has any natural authority over me, then I can’t have any natural authority over any other human being either’. That reflects the reciprocity found in a mathematical equation, and it is Newton’s Third Law – for every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction.
That then gives us the negative moral obligation that tells us that we must refrain from interfering with the freedom of others. And if we reflect on that for a second, the world would be a much better place if we all lived by that simple principle.
However, the evidence shows that we also recognize positive obligations – obligations to help others. But we do not recognize these obligations because some other person tells us that we should. We simply know that we have these obligations. And the evidence for these positive obligations comes from the creation of new life.
The only time in life that we freely and voluntarily assume onerous obligations, not out of fear of punishment, or the prospect of some advantage, or because we are told by some ‘authority’ to assume them, but out of unconditional love, is when we create new human life in our own image.
But that is only the case if we are not so totally in bondage to our primitive instincts that we cannot recognize those obligations. We will consider that point more fully when we deal with the principles of morality.
When we recognize the obligations we have towards the life we create, we also recognize that all human life must be deserving of the same obligations, especially the life that is least able to fend for itself.
However, as later articles will show, that does not mean that we can only recognize these positive obligations when we create new life. It simply means that the one time in life when we automatically recognize these obligations is when we create new life. That is because the obligations are imprinted into our brains as raw mathematical data, and are accessible to all of us if we choose to look for them.
How Freedom speaks to us of God and His Law
Freedom cannot recognize as law the commands, doctrines and opinions of other human beings.
Yet we still recognize that we do have certain fundamental obligations, not because someone tells us that we have those obligations, but because they are imprinted into our brains as a moral law.
So the only way freedom and law can coexist is under the authority of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker. Anything else would render some of us slaves, and the others masters.
We find the same thing in physics.
Fundamental particles, like electrons and quarks, are free to choose from an infinite number of probabilities. Scientists call this property a particle’s wavefunction.
In his book Parallel Worlds, the popular TV physicist, Michio Kaku, describes this property of particles as follows: “In a quantum play, the actors suddenly throw away the script and act on their own. The puppets cut their strings. Free will has been established.”
That puts freedom as the fundamental principle of the laws that govern the universe.
However, if freedom is the foundation of the law, some other aspect of the law cannot compel particles to form the structures that create the world we see all around us. That would violate the symmetry that underlies the whole concept of a law.
Only something above the law can do that.
But can the probabilities of fundamental particles be manipulated or controlled to form the structures required to create the universe and life? According to Michio Kaku, that is almost certainly the case. He notes that physicists realize that if they could manipulate the probabilities of fundamental particles, then anything would be possible. Although that is still beyond the technical capabilities of science, it does suggest that the probabilities can be controlled.
However, if the probabilities can be controlled to ensure that particles form the structures necessary to create the universe and life, how could they be compelled to maintain those structures so that the order in the universe does not disintegrate into chaos?
That is where the second aspect to particle behavior comes into play. Particles can only assume a particular position when they are observed; literally, when they are looked at. That creates what the physicist Andrei Sakharov described as the “irreversible effect” which was crucial in the early stages of the universe.
It is this two-fold aspect of particle behavior that speaks of a Supreme Lawmaker. Only a Supreme Lawmaker can compel free particles to form the structures necessary to create an ordered and stable universe capable of creating and sustaining life, and that ordered state is made permanent with an observation.
That brings us to the first instance of convergence between science and religion.
The very first verses of Genesis exactly mirror this process with the words “And God said …” followed by “And God saw …”
We should imagine for a minute the author or authors of Genesis sitting down to write an account of the origins of the universe several thousand years ago. To come up with the idea that it all happened when God spoke to matter (“the earth”) that was “without form, and void” and told it to become “light”, and then “saw” the light and decided “that it was good”, would be a rather peculiar way to convince people of a God. In fact, that description didn’t even make any sense just a couple of hundred years ago. It has only been since the advent of quantum physics that the Genesis account does not seem that ridiculous any longer. And as we shall see in the next articles that look at the first few chapters of Genesis, not just verse by verse, but word by word, Genesis has pre-empted science in every respect, and continues to do so.
How the author/s of Genesis could have known all this will be the subject of a subsequent article on insight.
But first, we need to consider how science, philosophy and religion all reveal the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker.
Science, philosophy and religion all reveal the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker
In religion the search for a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker is quite obvious.
In science we find exactly the same thing, except scientists don’t express it in that way.
Today we hear much from scientists about what they call “The Theory of Everything”, or “The Final Theory”. They believe that such a theory could provide a comprehensive explanation of how the universe and life came about by reference to certain, as yet undiscovered, fundamental principles. So the ‘Supreme Law’ in science is the elusive “Final Theory”.
However, the issue of probabilities causes a problem. What scientists find is that if there is only this one universe, the probability that it would have ended up this way is just too remote.
So they get round that problem by simply multiplying the number of universes, and then claim that a universe like ours was bound to emerge somewhere, and it just happens to be here.
This is what scientists today call the multiverse theory. The multiverse is science’s ‘Supreme Lawmaker’. A ‘Supreme Lawmaker’ that really comes down to probabilities.
An analogy would be a Multi-Lottery. Instead of multiplying the number of entries into one lottery, we multiply the number of lotteries, and then argue that our numbers must come up in one of those lotteries.
They won’t, of course, unless a draw is made, and we can check our numbers. That relates to the problem of the observation element of the properties of fundamental particles.
When we get to philosophy, we find that on the whole, especially in ‘modern’ philosophy, the arguments are so impenetrable that they are really quite incomprehensible to ordinary people. Much of this ‘modern’ philosophy is little less than an extravagant academic indulgence. Interesting, perhaps, to fellow philosophers, but quite irrelevant to anyone else in their daily lives.
Yet earlier philosophical theories do impact our lives to a considerable extent. Most governments today operate on a version of the Social Contract theory set out by John Locke and others.
The Social Contract theory finds a ‘Supreme Lawmaker’ in the majority electing the government, and the government then making the ‘Supreme Law’.
The existence of an actual Supreme Law and Supreme Lawmaker is therefore important to the way we govern ourselves.
The Relevance of the Existence of a Supreme Law and a Supreme Lawmaker
It was the French philosopher, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, another proponent of the Social Contract theory, who said that anyone can scribble his opinions on stone, or in some book or declaration, then claim that God told him to do it and that we all have an obligation to do as he says.
That is a valid point, although making the majority the ‘Supreme Lawmaker’ has exactly the same effect, unless there are specific and strict limitations to what government can do as a lawmaker. But if there are such limitations, then the government cannot properly be considered a Supreme Lawmaker, and we are back to square one.
The problem is not with the majority electing the government. The problem arises when the government then imposes obligations on the people that violate the fundamental principles of the Universal Law.
That is the critical issue that the Founding Fathers so clearly recognized.
This series of articles will demonstrate that the Founding Fathers were exactly right when they proclaimed that there are certain fundamental and inviolable principles that were handed down to us by our Creator. These articles set out the evidence that proves them right, while also putting meat on the bones of those principles. The evidence and arguments set out in these articles aims to be a guide to the more detailed evidence and arguments set out in my book, A ‘Final Theory’ of God.
However, the evidence for a Supreme Lawmaker as the author of a Supreme Law is not simply a matter of curiosity. It has profound implications for government. It means that if government passes laws that violate the fundamental principles of the Supreme Law, those laws are by definition invalid. They are unjust laws that lead by natural tendency to oppression and tyranny, and we have an obligation, and a duty, as human beings, to oppose and resist those laws, within the bounds of the moral law, in order to preserve our freedom, and uphold the Supreme Law.
That is an obligation imposed on us by the Supreme Law itself. And it is a duty we have to the Supreme Lawmaker in order that His “will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.”
The Next Article
The next article examines the convergence of science and Genesis with an analysis of the “first day”.
This series of articles is based on the book A ‘Final Theory’ of God by Joseph BH McMillan
Copyright © Joseph BH McMillan 2015 All Rights Reserved