Chapter One – There is No God and Other Tall Tales

Forgive Me for Waiting so Long to Tell You This, Chapter 1

I’m wearing a very unusual wristwatch as I type these words. Although it looks like an ordinary Seiko, it didn’t originate from a factory in Japan as do other Seiko watches.

My watch wasn’t designed by anyone, nor did anyone have anything to do with its assembly. My Seiko watch just happened.

Let me tell you about it.

A few summers ago, I was walking barefoot along a beach in northern Oregon. The weather was perfect. The view was breathtaking. I can still picture the rugged grandeur of the coastline and the massive cliffs standing against the tide of the surging ocean.

Finding a comfortable spot, I sat down on the warm sand and leaned against the base of a high cliff. As I rested there enjoying the sunshine, suddenly a small rock broke loose from the edge of the cliff and began tumbling down toward me. (I later realized that little rock must have been high in iron and tin content.)

What happened next was amazing to witness. That little rock tumbled at a perfect velocity and bounced at such precise angles that little cogs, springs, hammers, a stem and a watch casing broke off from it-all perfectly formed! You can imagine my surprise.

Even more amazing was the fact that the wind was blowing in such an unusual manner that all those perfectly-formed pieces landed together on the beach beside me. I watched in wonder as they fell on top of one another in such a way that a wristwatch was assembled and immediately began ticking! Not only that-the hands of the watch just happened to fall in place at the correct time! I could scarcely believe my eyes.

One chunk had apparently broken off from the rock during its tumble and had amazingly struck a piece of flint near a bird’s nest in a crag. As a result, a spark had ignited the straw-filled nest! The heat from the fire had fused the zinc and copper portion of that small rock and formed liquid brass, which began dripping from its height to the beach below. As it did, some drops of liquified brass just happened to drop on the casing of that newly-formed watch, coating it perfectly.

As I stared at the gleaming timepiece lying in the sand beside me, I suddenly felt a tremor like a small earthquake. Soon a small crack formed behind me at the base of the cliff.

I watched in astonishment as molten magma poured out of the crack and trickled in a small stream down the beach to the water. Due to the magma’s intense heat some of the silicon particles in the sand melted, forming a small piece of transparent glass. I marveled when I realized it would fit perfectly over the face of the wristwatch.

Before I could reach for the small, round piece of glass, a wave from the incoming tide washed ashore and picked it up. To my surprise the surf gently tumbled the crystal onto the watch, where it snapped perfectly into place!

I was ecstatic to see all these coincidences happening before my eyes. But there is still more to tell.

Strangely enough, a cow, which must have somehow escaped from its pasture, came wandering up the beach. To my utter shock, when it stood before me, the cow suddenly suffered a heart attack and died. As the animal fell in its final death throes, it landed on two sharp pieces of rock jutting out of the sand.

I watched in astonishment as two thin pieces of leather were simultaneously ripped from the cow’s hide. Not only that, both leather strips fell off in such a way that they attached themselves to the newly-formed watch on either side, forming a perfect-looking watchband!

I know this all seems difficult to believe, but I saw it happen with my own eyes.

Finally, I witnessed six red ants march out from a nearby rock and dutifully eat six little holes, all in a row, through one of those leather bands. These, of course, made precise openings for the brass clasp. (I forgot to mention that the clasp had also formed from the brass drippings and had fallen in such a way that it was perfectly attached to the other leather band!)

So now you know the origin of my wristwatch.

Do you believe my story? Of course you don’t, and neither do I. The truth is, my Seiko watch was manufactured. Although I’ve never seen any of the Japanese men and women who designed and assembled it, I’m quite sure they exist.

I’m convinced there were intelligent watch designers and assemblers because I can see an intelligent design and assembly in the final product. To believe that somehow my wristwatch “just happened” is irrational and requires a leap of faith that transcends all sound logic. If I sincerely believed my watch just happened, you’d be forced to question my intelligence.

You probably realize what I’m leading up to: We know that God exists because He is plainly revealed in His amazing creation. Anyone who is honest with himself will have to admit there is a Creator.

God Doesn’t Believe in Atheists

Isaac Newton was undoubtedly one of the most intelligent men of his day and is still revered by the learned. It is reported that he once constructed a small model of our solar system, using globes that all revolved around one central sphere. By means of rods, cogwheels and belts, all the model planets simultaneously orbited the model sun in this ingenious contraption. Even the orbits of the planets were to some degree proportionate to the orbits of the actual planets in our solar system.

An agnostic friend, upon seeing the contraption remarked, “Newton, what an amazing little invention! Who made it for you?”

Newton replied, “Nobody!”

“What do you mean, ‘Nobody’?”

“I mean, nobody made it for me! It just happened! All these cogs and belts and rods and spheres just came together, and by coincidence, they all began revolving in their set orbits just like the planets they represent!”

His unbelieving friend got the message.

According to a Gallup Poll, ninety-four percent of all Americans believe there is a God. Six percent say they don’t believe or are unsure. If you put those six percent on an airplane that is about to crash-land, the majority will become believers in God before the plane hits the ground. And all the remaining ones will become believers within moments after their death. In fact, every single atheist or agnostic who has died is now a believer in God.

Please, if you are one of those six percent, while you are still alive, give me a chance to persuade you of God’s existence before you have no choice but to believe it!

If you already believe in God, let me strengthen your intelligent conviction.

God’s Recipe for Apples

Have you ever bitten into a crisp autumn apple and thought about the fact that a good portion of what you are eating is made from the soil ? It’s true. Apples, as well as all other fruits and vegetables, are primarily formed from substances within the ground.

How do those substances travel through the roots, trunk, and branches of the apple tree, against gravity? And how does the apple tree know to form apples, rather than oranges or watermelons? Why doesn’t it occasionally make a lemon by mistake?

Not only does the apple tree produce apples from soil, but the apple tree itself is primarily formed from the same-the wood, the bark, the leaves, and even the soft white petals of the apple blossoms. How is that possible?

Even more remarkable is the fact that the fragrance of the blossoms is soil that has experienced an aromatic metamorphosis! When you think about what God is doing every day with raw earth, the story of Adam being formed from the dust of the ground isn’t so hard to swallow.

You probably know the apple tree can’t produce its crop without some outside help. Someone determined that the lowly honeybee, seeking nectar for its comb, would unwittingly pollinate the apple blossoms.

The little bee himself is quite remarkable. Once he discovers a tree full of blossoms, he travels back to his hive and performs a mysterious dance. That bee ballet enlightens a buzzing audience, and off they fly, knowing the proper direction and exact distance of the waiting nectar.

How does the apple tree know when to blossom? Who programmed it to monitor the temperature and period of the daylight so that it doesn’t blossom in the winter or fall?

Possibly the most astonishing fact about the apple tree is this: Protected within each fruit there are little data banks of information-we call them seeds-that contain all the secrets needed to grow another apple tree. Who among the human race has been able to unlock the secrets of a single apple seed?

Of course, the apple tree is not the Creator’s only witness. There are an infinite variety of mysteries under the sun, and each one calls our attention to an amazing God. He’s left His signature on everything He’s designed.

Other “Coincidences” of Nature

How does the salmon, after swimming two thousand miles in the open sea, find the river, then the tributary, and finally the stream of her birth, where, as her ancestors, she will lay her eggs? And what is it that motivates her to fight relentless rapids and return to a place she hasn’t seen in years only to spawn and quickly die?

The water that forms those rapids hides some secrets of its own. You probably know that sidewalks and bridges contract as they get colder and expand when they get warmer. But why is it that water, unlike practically every other substance, expands just before it freezes? No one knows, but it’s a good thing it does, or else ice would be denser than water and wouldn’t float.

If ice didn’t float, it would sink to the bottom of lakes after crystallizing on the surface. When the spring thaw arrived, some ice on the lake bottoms would remain frozen. As this cycle repeated itself over a period of years, eventually every northern lake, and then every southern lake, would be frozen solid. Earth would enter a permanent and progressively harsher ice-age. As a result, life wouldn’t be so pleasant in the Bahamas, or any place else for that matter.

I’m glad God designed the molecular structure of water a little differently than He did everything else!

There are so many other “coincidences” of nature that volumes could be written detailing them.

Think about our sun for a moment. As big as it looks, it’s actually much larger than you can imagine. If it were hollow, it could contain 1,300,000 Earths. Although it is about ninety-three million miles away, you can feel its warmth on your face. The light that illuminates our days takes about eight minutes to reach us from the sun, traveling at a speed of 186,000 miles per second.

What if the sun were closer? You only have to ask someone who’s been to the next-closest planet to the sun, Venus. The surface temperature of Venus averages about 875 degrees. They say that vacationers tan rather quickly there.

What if the sun were further away? On Mars, the next-farthest planet from the sun, the mercury dips to about minus 200. The folks in Minnesota ought to count their blessings.

Speaking of distances, did you know that the moon, too, is obviously positioned very strategically for our sakes? If it were just a little bit closer (relatively speaking), the tides would tend to put a damper on everything. Miami would be under water for twelve hours each day due to the moon’s increased gravitational pull on the Atlantic Ocean. And when the tide came in, it would rush like a tidal wave.

Countless other integral phenomena-from the speed of Earth’s rotation to the Earth’s specific diameter-indicate that Someone carefully calculated what would be needed for life on this planet. Honest, intelligent people just can’t stick their heads in the sand and pretend the facts aren’t there. In fact, we don’t need to look further than our own bodies to see ample evidence of God’s handiwork.

The Amazing Human Machine

The human body is made up of a hundred trillion amazingly complex cells. Each cell is comprised of an organized grouping of molecules, which are in themselves highly structured and complex.

Every cell nucleus contains an identical strand of what scientists call DNA, the hereditary set of molecules that instructs every cell in the body as to its function. It is estimated that if the instructions of each strand of DNA were written out, they would fill at least one thousand, six-hundred-page volumes.

Think about that. Your entire body could be reassembled from the information contained in a single cell!

The DNA strands are less than a trillionth of an inch thick, but if unwound, each cell contains a strand that would stretch about two yards. If all the DNA in your body were attached end to end, it would stretch from the earth to the sun over eight hundred times!

Every cell in your body has a certain specific function. Let’s consider the cells in your eyes for a moment. How is it possible that you can read these words? It requires millions of miracles.

Inside your eyeball there are about 107,000,000 cells. About seven million of those cells are called cones, which you use to see in daylight. They are color-sensitive, and you can distinguish a thousand different shades of color. The other one hundred million are called rods, which you use to see in dim light. They aren’t color-sensitive, which is why things tend to look black and white at night.

As light enters the eye, the lens refracts an upside-down image upon the cones and rods. These images are then translated into little electronic messages that travel along some five hundred thousand neurons and nerve paths to take their information to the brain.

The computer inside your head then assembles millions of simultaneous bits of data, merges them with the slightly different data from the other eye, and assembles it into one three-dimensional picture. Then your brain flips the image over so that everything is right-side-up, and somehow sight is accomplished!

The front of the eye always needs to stay moist, so the brain monitors its dryness and sends a signal to activate the eye lid whenever it’s needed. A person might blink three billion times during his life but never needs to think consciously about doing it.

Incidentally, every cell in your body at this moment, except the brain and nerve cells, has been replaced within the last ten years. Quite literally, you’re not the person you used to be! You’ve been replaced! And every cell contains the identical DNA instructions you inherited at conception, when you were comprised of only two cells.

Those two cells divided and duplicated themselves until you were seven pounds of the most complex species God ever created, complete with integrated circulatory, glandular, digestive, nervous, immune, skeletal, lymphatic, respiratory, muscular, and reproductive systems!

The Blind Faith of Atheism

Speaking of conception, I’m always sadly amused when I read some skeptic’s objections to the virgin birth of Jesus Christ.

They say, “How is such a birth possible?”

I say, “How is any birth possible?”

There must be a million individual miracles connected with the conception, development, and birth of a baby. Why would anyone doubt the virgin birth just because God eliminated one miracle, one time, from the millions of miracles necessary for every baby to be born?

Pulling off the virgin birth was no more difficult for God than any other birth; in fact, it might have been a little easier, requiring one less miracle. Personally, I’d like to meet someone who can simply explain how a five-minute-old baby knows how to nurse.

The atheist actually displays more faith than the most zealous religious fanatic. To believe that there is no God takes infinitely more faith than to believe God exists, because all the evidence must be ignored. Atheism is the epitome of blind faith.

Why do some people remain steadfast atheists in the light of so much evidence that is contrary to their belief? Simply because they are smart enough to realize that if there is a God, then He shouldn’t be ignored. If He created us, then He has a right to tell us how we should live.

Hopefully, since I started this chapter, the already small percentage of atheists has now grown even smaller, and we’re ready to go on to the next chapter.

“In the absence of any other proof, the thumb alone would convince me of God’s existence.” Isaac Newton