Religion

[This was written by my son, Michael, for an English class assignment during his senior year in high school.]

I want to make a deal with you, the reader, before you read any of this paper. I want you to agree to keep an open mind while reading this. Assume that I have a chance of being right, that we are on common ground, and that, control your gasp, there might be more than science, and that science might be wrong! If you are ready to agree to this, keep reading. If not, stop now and walk away; don't waste your time.

My primary goal is to persuade you to believe. It doesn't matter what you believe in; I want you to believe. My secondary goal is to persuade you to believe in Christianity.

I will attempt to do this without quoting the Bible. It is hard not to, and some might say I need to, but I will try not for those who chose not to accept the bible as evidence.

My first point to you is Pascal's Wager. Pascal was a famous mathematician and theologian who said to a group of atheists (Pascal was Christian), "Suppose I'm wrong, Christianity is wrong, and atheism is right. And you die; what happens?" the atheists replied, "We die, and cease to exist."

Pascal said, "And I have lost nothing in life, because I am no more. But, suppose I am right, and you are wrong. What happens then? If I am correct, I go to heaven, and you have lost everything."

Pascal's Wager is one reason to believe in something. It does not need to be Christianity; I could replace Christianity in that conversation with any religion. The point is the same. By logical thought, the way we think in math and science, it is illogical to be an atheist.

Pascal's Wager gives us a logical reason to believe, but, for most people that doesn't cut it. Most people are stopped by the fact that believing requires faith. Faith means that you trust something that you cannot prove. I always hear, "Give me physical evidence of God, and I will believe." People do not want to have faith, and though there is physical evidence of god, they do not always accept it, though they shouldn't always need it. In order to be a religion you must have FAITH; that is in the definition of religion.

People shouldn't be scared of faith; We have faith in things we can't prove all the time. A common faith we have is in our mothers. When we are young children, we have faith in what our mothers do for us. You do not know if she is right or wrong. You do not understand everything she did, but you trust her. That is faith. And that is why we must have faith. Imagine what we are to God; we are children. He is all-knowing; we know very little. He knows more than we can ever understand, so, as we did with our mothers, we have to have faith that he is correct.

I know there are still people who are griping over not having physical evidence. Luckily for you, I will try to remedy this. I want you to think about the human body, and how incredibly complex it is. Take a second and try to collect as much information from you body as possible. Feel the air on your skin, feel every pin prick of pain, and every point not in pain. Feel your weight, feel the motion of your lungs, feel the movement of your eye as it focuses. Your body is sensing this all at once. Your brain is calculating all this calculation at once. Imagine, without a calculator, doing ten billion calculus problems at once. That is how complex we are. That is how complex everything in this world is. And this all happened by chance?

British astronomer, Sir Frederick Hoyle, attempted to calculate the probability of life occurring. He was able to find the probability for just the proteins the simplest cell would need. He found that to be 1 in 10 to the 40,000 power. You are more likely to win the lottery, twice, in one day, after finding the love of your life. And to top it off, this does not account for the DNA in a cell, something much more complex. The more of the cell we add on, the higher and higher the odds become against your existence. The number becomes so low that even billions of years do not give us enough time for this to occur, and to have solid proof. Evolution is weakened by this; if this was any other theory in science, everyone would be in an uproar about how unscientific it is to believe this.

Now, to compare, what are the odds of an all-powerful being, being able to create life? I can tell you that, it's one out of one. In math, something that is simpler is more probable. According to the mathematical principle, one of the foundations of modern science, Occam's Razor, the simpler explanation is probably the correct explanation.

I have given you a logical reason, Pascal's wager, and a physical reason, our own existence. I have given you a mathematical reason, and a scientific reason. I could go on and describe for you the wonder of God, and the emotional peace that trust in God brings you. I could go on to explain how humans are naturally morally corrupt, and how Christianity explains why and offers a solution to it. But they rarely change someone's mind.

So now I plead with you: open your mind up, tear down the concrete wall that blocks you from believing and blocks you from faith. I know that I can never completely prove God's existence to a non-believer. But when it comes down to it, I cannot prove anything to anyone. If I drop my pen, it falls; I have evidence of this, but, all I have is evidence, not proof. I do not really know that my pen will fall the next time. And maybe, just maybe, I have faith in my observations, that the pen will fall. If I can have faith myself, why can't I believe in God?


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