I’ve become convinced that its important for the Church to inoculate our young people with a healthy dose of catechesis before we ship them off to college, just enough so that when they first hear about Nietzsche or really study Darwin they won’t freak out and presume that what the Church taught them in 6th grade confirmation is the only wisdom the Church has to offer.
Knowing most folks won’t read long boring books, I’ve been working on writing a catechism, a distillation of the faith into concise questions and answers with brief supporting scriptures that could be the starting point for a conversation.
You can find the previous posts here.
Questions 7 & 8~
I. The Father
7. Is belief in God credible?
While God cannot be proven, the case for God can be rationally persuasive. Belief in God is not superstition.
Indeed because God is the answer to the question ‘Why is there something instead of nothing?’ God is the most obvious thing of all.
“God is love.” – 1 John 4.8
8. What are some ways of demonstrating belief’s credibility?
The ancient Church called them ‘Ways’ of reasoning such that ‘God’ was the most credible conclusion. These ways derive from God’s self-revelation as Being itself in Exodus: ‘I Am He Who Is.”
The First Mover
Some things have been moved
All things that are moved are moved by a mover
An infinite regress of movers is impossible
There is an unmoved mover beyond creation from whom all motion proceeds
This Mover is what we call God
The First Cause
Some things are caused
Everything that is caused is caused by something else
An infinite regression of causation is impossible
There must be an uncaused cause of all that is caused
This Cause is what we call God
No things in the universe must necessarily exist; that is, all things are ‘contingent’ beings.
It is impossible for everything in the universe to be contingent because something cannot come of nothing, and, if traced back, eventually there must have been one thing from which all others have occurred.
There must be a necessary being whose existence is not contingent on any other being or beings.
This Necessary Being is whom we call God.
In all creatures and objects there is found some degree of beauty.
Something is called beautiful according to its nearness to some principal of beauty.
If an object possesses the property of beauty to a lesser extent, then there exists an entity which possesses the property of beauty to a maximal degree.
This Infinite Beauty we call God.
All natural bodies in the world act towards ends.
These objects are in themselves unintelligent.
Acting towards an end is characteristic of intelligence.
There exists an intelligent being that guides all natural bodies towards their ends.
This Intelligent Being is whom we call God.
“The heavens declare the glory of God…” – Psalm 19.1