|By: Dr. John Ankerberg and Dr. John Weldon; ©2002|
|In the end, a creator God is our only logically possible explanation for origins. The authors list four options to be considered for the origin of the universe, then point out that only one—that it was created by something self-existent—does not contradict the laws of logic.|
In the end, a creator God is our only logically possible explanation for origins. How do we know this? In order to answer this question, we must first make one assumption that is crucial to almost everything else. Dr. Sproul has pointed out the necessity of not only assuming the validity of the laws of logic but the necessity of adhering to them. Without this, even science is impossible and must end up teaching nonsense, as it does now in the area of origins.
To argue validity to logic is an assumption, but an absolutely necessary one. If logic has no validity, even the words used to argue against logic have no meaning:
Put another way, “How do we know that the real is rational? We don’t. What we do know is that if it isn’t rational, we have no possible way of knowing anything about reality. That the real is rational is an assumption. It is the classical assumption of science. Again, it is a necessary assumption for science to be possible. If the assumption is valid and reality is rational and intelligible, then the falsifying power of logic can play a major role in scientific inquiry.” 
In other words, if we reject the laws of logic, we reject everything and all knowledge becomes impossible. But if we accept the laws of logic, as we must, then this leaves us only one valid option for explaining the origin of the universe—creation by God. Let’s see why.
As Sproul points out, there are really only four options to consider for the origin of the universe: 1) that the universe is an illusion—it does not exist; 2) that it is self-created; 3) that it is self-existent and eternal by itself; and 4) that it was created by something self-existent. He further argues out that there are no other options: “Are there are options I’ve overlooked? I’ve puzzled over this for decades and sought the counsel of philosophers, theologians, and scientists, and I have been unable to locate any other theoretical options that cannot be subsumed under these four options.”  For example, the idea of spontaneous generation inherent to naturalistic evolution is the same as option 3, self-creation; philosopher Bertrand Russell’s concept of an infinite regress, an infinite series of finite causes, is simply a camouflaged form of self-creation disguised to infinity.
Dr. Sproul proceeds to show that the first three options concerning the origin of the universe must logically be eliminated as rational options.
Option 1 must be eliminated for two reasons. First, if the universe is an illusion, the illusion must somehow be accounted for. If it’s a false illusion then it isn’t an illusion; if it’s a “true” illusion then someone or something must be existing to have the illusion. If this is the case then that which is having the illusion must either be self-created, self-existent, or caused by something ultimately self-existent, i.e., again, everything is not an illusion.
The second reason for eliminating option 1 is that if we assume the illusion is absolute (that nothing exists), including that which is having the illusion, then there is no question of origins even to answer because literally nothing exists. But if something exists, then whatever exists must either be self-created, self-existent or created by something that is self-existent.
The problem with option 2, self-creation, is that “it is formally false. It is contradictory and logically impossible.”  In essence, self-creation requires the existence of something before it exists: “For something to come from nothing it must, in effect, create itself. Self-creation is a logical and rational impossibility.... For something to create itself it must be before it is.
This is impossible. It is impossible for solids, liquids, and gases. It is impossible for atoms, and subatomic particles. It is impossible for light and heat. It is impossible for God. Nothing anywhere, anytime, can create itself.”  Sproul points out that an entity can be self-existent and not violate logic but it can’t be self-created. Again, when scientists’ claim that 15 to 20 billion years ago “the universe exploded into being” what are they really saying? If it exploded from nonbeing into being then what exploded?
Sproul summarizes his reasoning in six points. First, chance is not an entity. Second, non-entities are powerless because they have no being. Third, to argue that something is caused by chance attributes instrumental power to nothing. Fourth, something caused by nothing is self-created. Fifth, the idea of self-creation is irrational and violates the law of noncontradiction. Sixth, to retain a theory of self-creation requires the rejection of logic and rationality.  While the concept of self-creation can be believed, it cannot be argued rationally. It is as rationally inconceivable as a round square or a four-sided triangle. 
The problem with option 3, that the universe is self-existent and eternal, is that the discoveries of modern science force us to reject it. And there are other problems.
Again, how did the universe exist forever and then do in time (i.e., create life) what it had not done forever? Are all parts of the cosmos self-existent and eternal or only some parts? If we say all parts, that includes ourselves and every single man-made item that exists. But
we know these cannot be self-existent and eternal. Cars, watches, chairs and all people were brought into existence at some point in time. If we say some parts of the material cosmos are self-existent and that they created other parts, we have essentially transferred the attributes of a transcendent God to the self-existent, eternal parts of the universe and thereby rejected our own assumption of materialism. Besides, it simply is not rational to argue that matter created life.
All the laws of science, logic and common sense show that life does not originate from non-life.
Finally, if there were ever a “time” when nothing existed, what would exist now? Clearly, nothing would exist—unless we argue something can come from nothing—more magic that places us back at self-creation, a logical impossibility. So if things exist now, then something is self-existent, and it must either be God or matter. If it can’t be matter, and it can’t, then it must be God. 
Sproul continues to point out that the remaining concept of a self-existent reality, i.e., God, is not only logically possible it is logically necessary:
After logically demonstrating option 4 as the only reasonable option available in the realm of the debate over origins, Sproul also shows that the classic arguments by Kant and Hume against the cosmological argument are invalid. Indeed, Kant and Hume are vastly overrated by skeptics, and, in fact their theories are actually antithetical to science. For example, Roy Abraham Varghese comments as follows:
In sum, based upon the law of non-contradiction and its extension, the law of causality, Sproul demonstrates that we have no other rational option than option 4, that the universe was created by something that is self-existent, i.e., God.  But it is also a necessary and practical conclusion that this God be personal, not impersonal. “Can there be an impersonal cause of personality ultimately?”  No. Of course, many people today prefer the idea that God is impersonal, whether we have the Brahman of Hinduism, some other form of pantheism, or the essentially illogical “deification” of matter as in naturalistic evolution. (Again, if the universe is created, then pantheism is impossible for this would mean God was created.)
The reason for this preference for impersonality is evident. If God is impersonal, we are off the hook and accountable to no one. The concept of an impersonal origin is attractive because it allows us to think we escape moral responsibility to a personal God. We can live as we wish and do what we want. Biblically, of course, and often practically, this is the ultimate exercise in self-delusion.
Sproul concludes by stating, “Chance as a real force is a myth. It has no basis in reality and no place in scientific inquiry. For science and philosophy to continue the advance in knowledge, chance must be demythologized once and for all.” 
If the results of a Gallup poll reported on a CNN “factoid” are correct, only 9% of Americans believe that life on earth arose by chance anyway. This would seem to imply that most Americans are better informed about origins than most scientists. Of course, most Americans also believe in evolution; they simply believe God used the evolutionary processes to create life. The reasoning is that, if life exists, it is much more reasonable to think it came from God than from nothing, regardless of the process. At this point, unfortunately, most Americans have also bought into the second level of modern scientific myth making, the garnering of scientific data in such a manner as to make evolution seem possible. In other words, if chance is rejected, and we assume God used the process of evolution to create life, then all the “evidence” scientists claim for evolution “must” be valid. Biblically, however, it is impossible that God could have used the process of evolution, and this explains why its claimed evidences are found to be non-existent.
In conclusion, once we have God on board, it is simply a matter of logically employing Christian evidences to prove that the Christian God is the one true self-existent being. Indeed, what other rational, comprehensive, convincing worldviews do we have as options? Apart from Christianity, there are none.  For example, Eastern religions are philosophically self-refuting and nihilistic; modern materialism/secularism/atheism/humanism is bankrupt philosophically, morally, and in most other ways, as demonstrated by a number of modern philosophers and theologians.  Polytheism, deism, pantheism, panentheism, and other worldviews are also inadequate or logically deficient.  Only Christianity survives the tests of logic, rationality and empirical, historical verification as a comprehensive worldview.