[Excerpt from IS JESUS “GOD”? Copyright © 2017 Edward K. Watson. All rights reserved. Section 7.2.]
Superficially, the Bible’s claim that Jesus is God seems silly, but if one contemplates the claim and follows the logical process; the absurdity disappears:
Believer: Jesus is God and created the universe.
Skeptic: That’s ridiculous.
Skeptic: The universe is billions of years old and is unimaginably large. It’s absurd to think someone who lived and died 2000 years ago created it.
Skeptic: The odds are nearly infinite that the universe’s creator, if he exists, would come to our planet given the number of planets it contains and its age.
Believer: If God’s intention for experiencing mortality is to bridge the mortal with the divine and save intelligent beings with moral agency; the sample size for determining probability is one, since, as far as we know, we’re the only planet with self-aware beings capable of moral agency.
Skeptic: That’s an enormous assumption.
Believer: I agree. The burden of proof is on me as the claimant, but to be fair, neither can you prove the existence of intelligent, moral extraterrestrials which is needed to invalidate my assumption.
Skeptic: Prove it. Prove your claim Jesus created the universe.
Believer: I can’t. I acknowledge I can never prove my claim is true, only provide arguments that show probable, not provable evidence. All I can do is show logical internal consistency of the assumption; the challenge posed by the New Testament as the world’s only unedited, frameless, correlative anthology; and the undeniable fact that the religion that taught Jesus is God has given mankind nearly all the tangible benefits we enjoy today.
Skeptic: Belief in him is not the same as proving he really is God and created the universe.
Believer: I agree. You’re free to believe or disbelieve just as I am free to believe or not believe. But since the beneficial results of belief in Jesus are so overwhelming—every technology or modern convenience you see around you and every right and inherent dignity you enjoy—can be shown to come from those who believed in Jesus; to me, the likelihood that the Bible’s claim is true is drastically better than the alternative.
Skeptic: The world’s debt to Christianity is undeniable, but it does not make the Christian message true.
Believer: I agree. I choose to believe primarily because of how the Christian message affects me personally—how I find peace and happiness, a sense of belonging to something good and powerful, feel that my sins have been forgiven—and how I view others and desire to do good while on this earth. Its incontrovertible track record of being the greatest thing that has ever happened to mankind tells me the positives of becoming a real Christian vastly outweighs any negatives. But ultimately, it does not matter that Christianity has been the greatest force for good in humanity’s history; what matters is how I respond to Christ’s message. I choose to believe.
One cannot prove Jesus is God – it is a matter of faith. One can either accept or reject him, but since that faith has given very real benefits to mankind and it causes an undeniable positive change in people; rejecting him “Just because,” can be viewed as more illogical than believing he is God made flesh.