Don’t we all want scientific, verifiable evidence that God exists? The seeming lack of evidence can drive people to dismiss the possibility of God’s existence, especially those with a more scientific or logical bent. Christians, when confronted with the accusation that no tangible evidence of God exists, often find themselves confused because it sounds like an atheist “throwing down the gauntlet.”
Hard, tangible evidence that God exists is necessary to believe in God.
Whether evidence is “hard, tangible” can be determined objectively.
God, if he exists, can be verified via “hard, tangible” means.
Science is capable of evaluating matters of faith.
Begin with: “What in your mind constitutes hard, tangible evidence that God exists?” [Alternative wording: “If God were to exist, what kind of hard, tangible evidence would you expect to find?”] (You need to reach mutual agreement on the definition of hard, tangible evidence before you can have a meaningful conversation.)
Then, proceed with one of the following:
1. “Just because you cannot find such evidence doesn’t mean that God doesn’t exist. Have you ever been in love before? There is no hard, tangible evidence for the existence of love, yet most of us would appeal to our life experience to say that we believe in love.” (Highlighting the logical fallacy of ‘if there isn’t evidence, then God doesn’t exist’)
2. “God, as we typically picture him, is someone who has immense power and can do things that normal human beings cannot. God can break rules that we can’t, such as defying death or gravity or time. In that case, then, God exists outside such rules, which means that he also exists outside scientific rules. Thus, to try to prove God using hard, scientific evidence is a futile cause—God cannot be bound by such rules.” (Here, you are highlighting the impossibility of proving the supernatural from the natural. This is important especially if the person is equating hard, tangible evidence with scientific evidence)
3. “Although hard, tangible evidence for God’s existence may be hard to find, there are many other forms of evidence that have led scientists and philosophers to believe in God’s existence.” Then go on to share arguments such as intelligent design, ontological argument, etc. (See Resources)
4. “Can you show me hard, tangible evidence that he doesn’t exist?” “So you see, both of our positions require faith. I think that given the intricate design of our universe and even our planet, maybe it takes less faith to believe God exists than that it all happened by chance.” (See the intelligent design argument from point 3)
5. “We all want hard, tangible evidence that God exists, but over time, despite not having all the evidence I want, I’ve come to believe that God exists. Can I tell you why?” Then, bring up your reasons, especially ones such as how God has spoken to you, ways in which you’ve experienced God, etc. (Scientific or philosophical evidence can be challenged, but your personal experience cannot be disputed. Thus, this type of personal evidence may be even more powerful and convincing.)