Believing In God

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Is there a God?

Theism- Someone who believes in God

  • Science is good, but it can not disprove the existence of God.
  • A lot of people have succeeded in communicating to God through prayer.
  • God has answered many people's prayer which has made a difference to their lives.
  • The world can't have happened by chance or accident.
  • There are similarities between so many religions, this cannot be a coincidence.

Agnosticism- Someone who is not sure whether God exists

  •  I want to know why we are here.
  • I want to see more proof to be sure whether God exists.
  • All religions cannot be wrong.
  • I want to know what was there before the big bang.
  • What about all the prayer which are not answered?
  • There are so many people who believe that God exists, they can't all be wrong.
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Is there a God?

Atheism- Someone who does not belive in God.

  • If God exists, why are there so many terrible disasters?
  • Miracles are just coincidences and illusions.
  • There is so much evil in the world.
  • People have made up God to feel safe and turn to God when things go wrong.
  • There is no evidence that God exists, no-one has seen God.
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Features of a Christian

  • Baptsim- The child is introduced to the Church, the family of God, the god parents and the congregation who promise to bring the child up in Christian faith.
  • Worship- Young children are taken to Church on a regular basis They are encouraged to read and learn the Bible.
  • Adulthood- As a child grows into an adult, their Christian beliefs stay with them. When they have children, they will believe that a Christian upbringing offers stability.
  • Being part of the community- Churches provide social events that binds the community together; including prayer meetings, Bible study groups or purely social events.
  • Going to Church- The most memoriable events in a child's life will be special occassions celebrated; these will usually be Christian festivals like Christmas & Easter.
  • Sunday School- Children are taught important stories about Jesus, God and the early Church. Majority of children meet belief in God and encourage the developing faith.
  • Church school- Christian parents will often choose a church school. The child will be taught about the Christian faith and will be encouraged to make a commitment to this in confirmation.
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How can religious experiences lead to belief in Go

  • Numinous- The feeling that there is something greater than you.
  • Prayer- Direct communication with God, usually through words.
  • Conversion- When yor life is changed by giving yourself to God.
  • Miracle- Something which breaks the laws of science, & only God could have done it.

Features of a conversion - 1).Learn about the religion, 2).Be commited, 3).Have full faith & belief

Miracles- Examples:  1). Visions of Virgin Mary at lourdes. 2). Jesus feeding 5000 people.

Answered Prayer-  Example: 2). An answer to prayer for intervention.

Numinous experience- This feeling many convince people that God exists.

Conversion- A person is confronted with a coice of whether to believe in God or not.

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The Design Argument

Also known as the Telelogical Argument.

William Paley's argument:

  • To design something takes intelligence & thought.
  • The universe shoes evidence of design.
  • Therefore, a being with intelligence and thought must  have designed it.
  • Only God could have the intelligence & thought enough to design the universe.
  • Therefore, as the universe exists, God must exist.

The problem with God being compared to a watchmaker is that God should never be compare to a human. This may be an insult to a religious person's beliefs. Also, Paley is assuming that the pattern in nature must be evidence of design, assuming that there is a God.

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Was the Universe designed?

Seven Days of Creation:

  • Day 1: Light
  • Day 2: Water
  • Day3: Dry land to produce fruit & vegetables.
  • Day 4: Sun, moon & stars (day and night).
  • Day 5:  Living creatures in the sea and air.
  • Day 6: Animals & mankind (Adam and Eve).
  • Day 7: God rested.

The Big Bang Theory:

  • Atoms exisitng
  • 17,500,000,000 years ago; a tiny dot exploded.
  • Sun, planets, gravity, solar system, galaxy, universe
  • The Earth, a planet with an atmosphere. Single cell life (amoeba).
  • Multi- cell oragnisms, what we now call life.
  • 14,500,000 years of life on Earth (evolution) leads to mankind.
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The problem of evil & suffering


  • Starvation - moral evil
  • Earthqaukes - natural evil
  • Bullying - moral evil
  • Child Labour - moral evil
  • Slavery - moral evil
  • Discrimination - moral evil

If God is omnipotent, He would stop all of this evil from happening. If God is omnibenevolent, He wouldn't let this happen to the people He loves. If God is omniscient, He would stop evil from happening in the future.

  • Chrsitains believe that it is actually Satan who is spreading evil & suffering. Howvere, they may just be using him as someone to blame it on.
  • If Jesus can go through all of that pain to repent peoeople's sins, they can go through the little things in life whilst keeping faith in God.
  • Adam & Eve's story suggests that this was the cause of all evil. By them picking the applke, they have caused a lifetime of evil & suffering. However, some people use this story to blame women and not trust them. This theory is called Augustinian Theodicy.
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Religion & the Media

  • Songs Of Praise:

This programme shows hymns that are being sung by Chrsitians. It also talks about the Christian faith. In my opinion, religious people weren't represented fairly because there were only White Chrsiatians shown in the programme.

  • Vicar Of Dibley:

The main issue: 'Should women be allowed to become priests? The issue was dealt with in a humerous way. The Christians in the programme gave the impression that they were sexist becaus ethey did not agree with this idea.

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Key Words

  • Agnosticism- Not being sure whether God exists.
  • Atheism- Belieiving that God does not exist.
  • Conversion- When your life is changed by giving yourself to God.
  • Free Will- The idea that human beings are free to make their own choices.
  • Miracle- Something which seems to break a law of science and makes you think only God could have done it.
  • Moral evil- Actions done by humans which cause suffering.
  • Natural evil- Things which cause suffering but have nothing to do with humans.
  • Numinous- The feeling of the presence of somehting greater than you.
  • Omnibenevolent- The belief that God is all good.
  • Omnipotent- The belief that God is all powerful.
  • Omniscient- The belief that God knows everything that has happened & everything that is going to happen.
  • Prayer- An attempt to contact God, usually through words.
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