Friday, April 03, 2009

Doug Groothuis on Who or What Made God?

From the theistic standpoint the question of who or what made God is a nonsense question. Doug Groothuis addresses this in a piece called "WHO DESIGNED THE DESIGNER?: A DIALOGUE ON RICHARD DAWKINS’S THE GOD DELUSION."

Groothuis writes: God is understood in monotheism as self-existent. God does not depend on anything outside of himself for divine existence. That is, God is the ultimate explanation for the universe and its form, but to ask where God came from or who designed God from this perspective is a nonsense question, something like: ‘What is north of the North Pole?’ or ‘What word do you use when no words will do?’ So, Dawkins and Anthony to the contrary, this is a perfectly good concept. There is no infinite regress such that nothing gets explained. There is, rather, a finite regress to an infinite being; that is, a self-existence being. The technical term for self-existence is aseity. The Apostle Paul spoke of this when he said to the philosophers of Athens in Acts, chapter seventeen: ‘The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else’."

And, "there is a significant tradition in Christian theology that claims that God’s existence is simple. That is, God has no parts. So, while God is the ultimate being in existence, God is not composed of discrete sections or aspects, so to speak. If that view is correct, then God would not be complex at all, but perfectly simple." An absolutely simple being would not need "to be explained on the basis of something simpler than itself."