4/23/2013 | Share this article: View CommentsBy WizenedSage (Galen Rose) ~
I think simple logic points the way to an excellent test of whether a god is a real or true god, as opposed to a human creation. Now this test may not be absolutely perfect, but the failure rate can easily be proven to be extremely low, less than 0.0004% (less than 1 part in 2,500).
I propose that any god who/which is claimed to be invisible is a false god.
How can we know this, you ask? Well, consider that all of the gods that man has invented throughout history, that have been believed in for any length of time, have been invisible to the common man - or at least out of sight, like the ancient Greek gods high up on Mount Olympus.
The following site lists the names of over 2,500 gods which have been believed in and worshiped by convinced followers in historic times: http://www.rationalresponders.com/a_big_list_of_gods_but_nowhere_near_all_of_them . This is where the 2,500 comes from in my error-rate calculation above. There are doubtless thousands of others we know nothing about because they are from prehistory and /or non-literate cultures.
Of course, legends have it that a few humans actually saw a god, as is claimed for Moses, but Moses was not a common man, so for all the rest of us, Bible-god is invisible.
But what about Jesus? Didn’t people see Jesus? Well, that is debatable. All anyone “knows” about Jesus has come to us second-hand, in the writings of others. He left no writings himself, and there are no pictures or video. But, if some people actually did see Jesus, it was a tiny fraction of the world’s population, and it was for a very brief period. While many Christians today claim to have a “relationship” with Jesus, he is nevertheless invisible to the common man. Even those who claim to have this relationship don’t actually see Jesus.
According to the Bible, Bible-god wants desperately for people to know that he exists and to worship him. Now consider that we really can only be absolutely certain of a god we can actually see or detect with instruments; a god who proves beyond a shadow of a doubt by his testable actions in the real, physical world that he exists.
So far, the only scientific, objective tests of Bible-god have had to do with prayer, and those tests have consistently failed to prove the existence of that god. (See http://new.exchristian.net/2011/03/personal-god.html for examples.)
I think it is safe to say that all of those gods listed in the link above, and those thousands more which couldn’t be listed, were claimed to be invisible to - or otherwise hidden from - the common man. We know this because any visible god could easily be tested, would have been tested, and thus would have been proven false, and those who created these gods were well aware of this. If we throw a rock at a visible god and it hits him, does he say “ouch?” Does he bruise like a human? Testing visible gods is ridiculously easy, and that’s why man has always invented invisible gods.
Since we now know that ALL gods other than Bible-god that were believed in for any length of time were invisible, and all were false, the odds are overwhelming, thousands-to-one, that Bible-god, being likewise invisible, is also a false god.
At this point some believers will claim that god wants us to prove our faith by believing in him despite our not being able to see him. Well, since it’s a fact that we can’t see him, shouldn’t we expect his cheerleaders to come up with something like this? What else could they do? Should we really just accept such an obviously transparent argument? If Jesus provided visible proof of his resurrection and deity status to Doubting Thomas, as the Bible contends, then he surely thought Thomas had a valid doubt. Why should we be expected to be satisfied with less evidence than Thomas was provided?
If Bible-god truly existed and wanted mankind to believe in him, as the Bible says, then the obvious way to accomplish this would be to make himself visible so that we could easily test him and then believe - all of us – without doubts. But, as attentive humans have noted, the invisible and the non-existent look very much alike. Invisibility has always been used as a cover for nonexistence, since the very first gods were created. Why should we think it would be any different for Bible-god?
And really, there’s no need to be afraid of incurring a god’s wrath for a mistake. At this late date in history, surely no reasonable god could expect us to believe in yet another invisible god.