We’ve all heard the typical Atheist, Secularist, Humanist, Deist, Agnostic, or New-Age argument. “If you don’t have any absolute proof of your every claim, you have no reason to believe what you believe… which makes you a stupid, monstrous liar.” Of course, most of these individuals have no “absolute proof” for any of their alternative assertions, but that’s not the point (or, rather, they won’t let it be the point, because it shames them to think they’re actually worse-off than the Christian in these regards)… the point is whether or not there is any good reason, at all, to believe anything the Bible claims. If there is, one must then decide if the Bible can truly be the Word of God; because every passage of the Bible is based on the veracity of the entire collection, and either stands upon or falls by it.
First, one must realize that there is no such thing as absolute, indisputable proof… especially when contending with a hopeless denialist (a.k.a., the “skeptic”). At every turn, all the evidence – no matter what side of the argument you support, – is disputable. This fact is evidenced in the interactions between Socrates and the Sophists. The Sophists were philosophers who claimed to have learned the truth about something or other, and were willing to share their advice for a nominal fee. They claimed to have proof of this truth; mainly, in the forms of empirical evidence, and valid experience. Along comes Socrates: arguably, the most tortured philosopher in history. Here was a man who admitted to loving wisdom and knowledge, but couldn’t get any: at every turn, no matter what the proof – how peer-reviewed and authenticated, – or personal experience, Socrates could honestly, and logically, question it into oblivion… leaving his opponent to scream out, “I don’t know anymore!” Eventually, the oracle of Pytha, which was alleged to have been controlled by Apollo, claimed that Socrates was the wisest man in their world. Socrates realized that he didn’t know anything for a fact, and couldn’t prove anything conclusively or absolutely… yet, here was an oracle – whose honor was based on the idea that it couldn’t lie, or be mistaken, – claiming he was the wisest man in the Greek world! Socrates wondered how this was possible. It seemed to be a paradox! Unless… Eureka! Socrates realized that wisdom comes only when you realize that you don’t know anything for certain, and must take everything you believe on the basis of faith… sometimes, a convincing faith, based on whatever is most obvious; but faith, nonetheless. This is, in fact, what led Socrates to make his famous statement, paraphrased by Dr. Orpheus in The Venture Brothers: “I only know enough to know that I know nothing”. In the end, all one has is faith. However, is this faith reasonable, or is it blind?