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The Absurdity of Atheism

There are many great arguments in favor of theism which have been offered and defended for thousands of years. Standing beside these, I believe, is one particular argument that demonstrates the absurdity of the atheistic worldview: that since atheism denies any and all immaterial, universal laws of logic and reason, atheism is absurd.

You may be taken back by that statement, but it remains true nonetheless. On an atheistic, materialistic worldview—that no transcendent, absolute, immaterial laws exist—the appeal to transcendent, absolute, immaterial laws of logic and reason is inconsistent with the worldview and thus self-defeating. The problem is found in that atheists presuppose the existence of laws of logic and reason by borrowing from the Christian worldview in order to argue against it; but in reality, the atheist, if he or she is consistent in his or her worldview, must deny the existence of all immaterial things, including laws of logic and reason.

“Well,” you ask, “what’s the problem with denying the laws of logic and reason?” The problem with denying the laws of logic and reason is that the pursuit of knowledge then becomes impossible. The laws of logic and reason are necessary for any statement to have meaning. Without the law of noncontradiction, the statement of “that is an apple” could mean something contradictory like “that is not an apple” or something completely arbitrary like “my toe is too big.” Without the laws of logic and reason, the result is the impossibility of knowledge and meaning, which means that one cannot even disagree with that statement if he or she denies the existence of the laws of logic and reason.

But atheists do affirm the existence of laws of logic and meaning, and I do not disagree that most do. The problem is that they affirm them contrary to their own worldview which denies them. Many atheists have tried defending the existence of these laws in contrast to their worldview by asserting that they simply exist without giving any proper reason as to how or why they exist. How would they like it if, in my worldview, I just insist that God exists without giving any proper defense as to why he exists? Atheists assume the laws of logic and reason—along with many other immaterial things like morality, truth, and the principle of induction—because they are created in the image of God and know him to be real yet suppress that truth so that they can remain in their rebellion (Romans 1:18-23).

Based on this, Christians are often accused of presupposing the existence of God when appealing to the laws of reason and logic, and to that we agree. This is called presuppositionalism and everyone, both theists and nontheists alike, presupposes things when entering into conversation. The reason Christians are eager to presuppose the existence of God is because without his existence, any and all immaterial principles cannot exist and thus renders discourse invalid and absurd. Only by assuming that there exists a transcendent being who has created this universe to be governed by the immaterial laws of reason, logic, mathematics, and morality can we appeal to those principles. On the atheistic worldview where there is no transcendent being who has created this universe to be governed by these immaterial laws, appealing to them in discourse or the pursuit of knowledge is inconsistent and absurd because that worldview cannot give an account for their existence; thus, the atheist must step out of his or her worldview and assume the Christian worldview in order to appeal to these immaterial laws. The final result is that atheism cannot even defend itself as a rational, coherent worldview and must be rejected by those who wish to remain sound, logical, and honest.

I want to ask then that if you affirm an atheistic, naturalistic worldview, how do you account for the existence of the transcendent, absolute, immaterial laws of logic and reason? And if you do not affirm their existence yet continue to operate in life as if they do exist, why do you live in contradiction to your own worldview?

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