Who created God? This is a common objection thrown out by popular atheists in response to the Kalam Cosmological Argument. It is meant to show a flaw in not only the KCA, but in the nature of God Himself.
Kalam Cosmological Argument.
The Kalam Cosmological Argument was first postulated by the 11th century Muslim theologian and philosopher named Al-Ghazali. William Lane Craig revived the argument in the late 1970’s, and it has become a staple in his debates ever since. So what does the argument actually say?
The KCA is a simple syllogism meant to explain the beginning of the universe. It has 3 main points. Those points are:
- Everything that begins to exist has a cause.
- The universe began to exist.
- Therefore, the universe has a cause.
What’s The Cause?
While the argument makes a strong case for the beginning of the universe, it does not go into details about what that “Cause”, might be. From other lines of argument, we deduce that the cause is God.
“Ah, but wait a minute! If everything has a cause, then what caused God?”. This is the challenge that is usually put forward as a response by atheists to the KCA. But notice the problem. Take a careful look at point 1 in our syllogism. Does it say, “everything has a cause”? No, it doesn’t. It says “Everything that begins to exist” has a cause. These are two very different things.
The Uncaused First Cause
Scientists didn’t always believe the universe had a beginning. They used to think that the universe was eternal. Several discoveries lead to the realization that the universe (and all time, space and matter) came into existence at some point in the past. This realization led to the question “what caused the universe to come into being?”.
Whatever the cause was, it had to be spaceless, timeless and immaterial. This is why the KCA is valuable. It leads us to ask what could have created all time, space and matter. But it is not just theologians that ask these questions. It’s scientists as well. In other words, everyone is looking for the “uncaused first cause” of the universe.
So the problem with asking the question “who created God”, is that it misunderstands point 1 of the KCA. God did not come into being. He is the uncaused first cause of the universe. He is eternal. And this has been the position of classical Christianity, and its parent religion of Judaism, from the beginning.
Have you run across this objection before? How did you respond?
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