A new atheist teenager recently linked a friend of mine to www.godisimaginary.com, where the first “proof” of God’s nonexistence is that he doesn’t answer prayers, and the second is that scientific, statistical analysis of prayer shows it has no effect on events.
Now, pretty much any Christian knows from experience that God answers prayers—and the longer you’ve been a Christian the more obvious it is because the pattern of providence starts to emerge in your life. So as far as convincing believers to throw in the towel, this seems like a pretty misguided place to start.
But it’s really much worse than that, because when you sit down to think of an analogy to prayer studies, you quickly realize how bizarre the idea even is. So while this website extols the virtues of intelligent, critical, rational, scientific thought, the first thing it does is use an unintelligent, uncritical, irrational and unscientific “proof”. Par for the course, I’m afraid.
Here’s what I mean. Imagine running a study on the effectiveness of letter-writing campaigns to the prime minister, where:
- There’s no way to check whether the letter-writers stamped their envelopes, or even addressed them correctly
- The control group is comprised of many people whose friends and family might write letters on their behalf without the knowledge of either them or the scientists running the study
- The prime minister has already stated unequivocally that not all letters will be answered in the way that their writers hope (nor within the timeframe of the study)
- The prime minister already knows every detail of what he is going to do, and even knows that he will do much of it to honor some of the letters he receives
- And he is fully aware of which letters are part of the study to test his response
It’s hard to imagine anyone seriously thinking such a study would be worthwhile, let alone scientific. It’s even harder to imagine an intelligent, critical, rational and scientific person seriously suggesting that the results of such a study prove anything about the efficacy of letter-writing campaigns.
Yet when it comes to running a study on whether a supreme intellect with a highly detailed plan responds to requests in the same way as a vending machine or some other regulated process, that’s a slam dunk?
This is what teenagers today think constitutes intelligent, scientific opposition to belief in God. Better homeschool your kids.