Big Idea: God not only exists, He is passionately pursuing us…it is our brokenness that keeps Him at a distance.
Key Points to Consider:
We cannot prove that God exists—you cannot prove a court case. You can simply make a case for what probably happened by presenting evidence. We will offer some evidence for why God exists and why the world is the way it is. Then you can consider whether this fits or not. Just remember, the Bible is not primarily about proving God exists. If we try to use it ONLY for that purpose, we will be disappointed.
The evidence favors His existence. Seek to get the class to consider these ideas: The creation of the world shows there is a Designer behind the universe (Rom. 1:18-20). The conscience indicates a Lawgiver behind each human’s sense of right and wrong (Rom. 2:14-15). The creativity we express in music and art reflect the same attribute that the Creator possesses (Ex. 35:31-32). Christ reveals what God is like in human form (Heb. 1:1-4). And the communion or fellowship of the Spirit in the Christian heart manifests the reality of God (Gal. 5:22-23).
Arguments for God:
The intelligent design argument – how did this world get such beauty and complexity without an intelligent designer? Can you get all this by random mutation and luck? Can you get a fully-functioning watch by blowing up a watch factory a few million times?
The argument from conscience – Why do we all argue for right and wrong, and not only agree with others, but expect everyone to agree? Where did this conscience come from?
The argument from history—look at the Bible’s grand narrative and how it fits the evidence!
The argument of Jesus—in the Bible Jesus claims over and over to be God’s Son—the exact representation of God to mankind in a real, tangible, touchable form. Beyond His teaching and miracles, His death and resurrection convinced the world that He not only was a good teacher, He was God pursuing us! It’s hard to deny four accounts of this life. The evidence is in Jesus’ favor.
The argument from miracles—look at this unexplainable event that I am aware of. Look at His healing power, or the way everything once works perfectly in my favor when I asked them too. Look at the fact that I am still alive!
The argument from the love of God’s people—look at the change the Christianity has wrought in the world for the better. God’s people have something special and they prove that God is at work and cares about this world.
The argument from personal experience—look what God has done for me and for others. Look at the change He has brought to the lives of people, including my own. I can argue with facts, but its hard to argue with someone who says they have a tangible, personal relationship with God.
The problem: It’s Personal
Often people don’t deny God exists because they are convinced by other arguments. They deny He exists because they want to believe that He is good, but the world’s brokenness and the evil they have experienced in their lives have made it hard to reconcile the idea of a caring, good God to the present reality.
The explanation for where evil came from:
God created a perfect world, and He even gave us a source of eternal life—the tree of life in the garden of Eden. We chose the knowledge of good and evil in the garden instead. We chose not to trust God. That’s no small decision—it is the one we all reflect in our selfishness at present. We all chose our own good over the good of others, and ultimately, we choose not to respect or trust God.
We were tricked—there is an enemy in this world telling us not to trust God.
Our actions have caused the world to be corrupted. We refused to be under God’s authority, now the world does not obey our authority—animals, weather, even our own bodies fight us.
It is easy to lose hope in a world like ours. People deceive us and take advantage of us leaving us with lifelong emotional and physical scars. Our bodies don’t always cooperate. Tragedies occur due to the weather, warfare, and crime. Did you know that the Bible records stories like these? Did you know that the Psalms are a collection of prayers, many of them from people in dire circumstances? Did you know that this brokenness breaks God’s heart? Did you know He promises to fix all that’s broken one day?
It’s easy to think that if God is big enough to create everything, He is too big to care about individuals. “He is too busy to care about me and my life.” But it is not true. He cares about YOU. That’s the most astounding part about the creation story—it is focused on mankind. In every other ancient story, the humans are afterthoughts, mistakes, slaves, collateral damage between cosmic powers. God created us as the centerpiece of this world—we are the part that is most like Him. The part He is most interested in interacting with—even after we’ve sinned.
Questions to Write about:
- What makes you appreciate the majesty of this world? Landscapes? Animals?
- If God is big enough to create everything, why does He concern Himself with individuals?
- What do I hate most about this broken world?
- What have I done that stands between me and God?
- Make a list of times when you have asked the question: why God?