Is God Real?

The Creation of Adam, Michelangelo (1511)

Yes, most fortunately, God is real! In fact, He is more real that we are.

St. Paul teaches in Acts 17:28 that “We live and move and have our being in Him”. In other words, we exist in Him. This means that it’s not us thinking about God that makes Him real. It’s God thinking about us that makes us real. We only exist because God is thinking us into existence.

But, aside from God being more real than us, there are many ways to know that God is real.

By looking at Creation

In the first way, we can tell just by looking at the world around us. As St. Paul teaches in Romans 1:20, “Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made.”

In other words, if we just look at the world around us, the mighty mountains, the beauty of the moon, the shade of the trees, the awesomeness of the rising sun, the terror of thunderstorms and tornadoes, and the peace of tranquil pond, we can tell there must be a great Creator who created this magnificent work of art.

And if we even just look at ourselves, the complexity of our brains and heart and our eyes and the human body in general, we can tell we must be engineered by some great Creator.

By thinking about existence

In the second way, we can tell just by looking at the concept of existence. You and I exist. We know we exist because we’re aware of our being here. Anything that exists is called an entity. Now, existence itself must also exist, otherwise there would be no existence and there would be no you and me. Because existence also exists, then existence is also an entity. This entity, we call God. God is existence.1, 2

By looking at movement

In the third way, St. Thomas Aquinas looks at movement. If something is moving, it’s because something else pushed it. But if something else pushed it, something else must have pushed that something else. And this goes on until it reaches the first mover to push everything else. That first mover, we call God.

By looking at causation

In the fourth way, St. Thomas Aquinas looks at causation. We are not here because we created ourselves. We are here because our parents made us. Our parents were made by their parents. And so on until we reach Adam and Eve.

And if we keep going, we can ask where did the Earth come from? And we can say that movements of the Solar System made the Earth. And the movements of the Milky Way galaxy made our Solar System. And the movements of the Local Group made the Milky Way. And the movements of the Laniakea Supercluster made the Local Group. And the movements of the Virgo Supercluster made the Laniakea Supercluster.1

And this goes on until we reach the first cause to create everything else. That first cause, we call God.2

By looking at goodness

In the fifth way, St. Thomas Aquinas looks at gradation. There is always a higher level (a higher “grade”) of some thing. For example, the highest grade of an acorn is a tree, and the highest grade of a baby is an adult human.

Further, the highest version of some thing is the cause of everything below it. So, the acorn is caused by its higher version, the tree. The baby is caused by its higher version, the adult human.

Now, if we apply this to goodness, the highest level of goodness is pure goodness itself. And so everything good is caused by this pure goodness. This source of pure goodness, we call God.1

By looking at intelligence

In the sixth way, we can look at order. If I were to take a deck of loose cards and drop it on the floor, no matter how many times I drop it, it will always fall in some random assortment. It will never land fully ordered and facing the same direction. But, if I did find a deck of cards neatly arranged, I would assume a person arranged it.

If I walked into the desert, and found a pocket watch, I wouldn’t think the desert made it. I would assume some person created it and it was dropped here.

If I walked into an open field and found an airplane, I wouldn’t think the open field made it. I would assume some person created it and left it there.

In the same way, when I look at the order of the world, if it there was no intelligence designer, everything would fall apart. And yet, we see order. We see forests and animals and humans and buildings and cities and space travel. This must mean an intelligence is behind this order and maintaining order. This intelligence, we call God.

As you can see, God is real. If you are reading this, you are real. If you are real, God must be real, because we cannot exist without existence, and God is existence. But, even more profound than God being real, is that God loves you and me.