What is the Anthropic Principle and how does it prove that God exists?
We asked this question on our television show Christ in Prophecy of Carl Gallups, senior pastor of Hickory Hammock Baptist Church in Milton, Florida, and the author of the best-selling apologetics book, The Magic Man in the Sky. He is also the founder of the world famous PPSIMMONS YouTube channel and prominent Freedom Friday radio talk show host.
Dr. Reagan: Carl, one of my hobbies over the years has been collecting crazy church signs. I have over 450 of them now. One of my favorites is the one which uses the logic of the Atheist against them. It reads, “God does not believe in Atheists, therefore Atheists do not exist.” What do you think about that?
Carl Gallups: It brilliantly turns their own logic against them. Of course, the humor of it is we know the Atheist does exist, and so does God. Wonderful, I love it!
Nathan Jones: One of the evidences you use in your book for God existing is called the Anthropic Principle. Can you explain what that is, for I found it fascinating?
Carl Gallups: The Anthropic Principle comes from Anthropology, meaning having to do with Man, such as the study of Man and Man’s origins.
Concerning the discussion of the Anthropic Principle, in my book I come at it from a two-pronged approach.
Prong #1: Earth Exists for Man
The first prong is what most people know as the Anthropic Principle, that is when you look at the world in which we live. In fact, the world in which all two to twenty million species depending upon who is counting, the only life that we know of in the universe so far is all on this one ball floating in space — Earth. That’s it!
Look at all the life on Earth and it makes you wonder just what does it take for that life to exist and sustain itself? If we were just a little further away from the sun, or a little closer to the sun, what would happen? If the moon were a little further, or a little closer, what then?
If you took all the salt water of the earth away, the ecology would die. If you left the salt water and took all the freshwater off the earth, the ecology would die. If you took all the plants away so there are no plants, or never again there being a green plant, we know plants produce our oxygen. You’ve got to have plants or the earth will die.
If you took away all the insects of the world, the earth would die. If you took away all the bees, the earth is going to die eventually. It would take a long time, but you couldn’t have cross pollination, so then all the plants would die, eventually causing everything to die.
We can go through all of these different, what are called “anthropic constants,” that have to work in order for life to be on earth. We can go right down the list, taking away all of the animals, eventually the earth would die because of the shock to the ecology.
But, watch this! Take away Man and leave everything else, then what happens to the earth? It’s fine. The earth goes on and everything is fine. Logically speaking, when we realize that all these hundreds of factors must be in place for life to go on, and if you remove any one of them, eventually everything related to the sustaining of life winds down, but that the one thing that you can remove and everything is fine is mankind. You can only conclude then that Man was not made for the earth, rather the earth was made for Man.
The Anthropic Principle says it appears as though this whole ecosystem was designed for the purpose of sustaining mankind. That’s one prong.
Prong #2: Man’s Intelligence
The other prong is to look at mankind. Evolutionists are fond of saying that animals are so similar since we evolved from a common ancestor, like humans from a chimp, and that we are so similar to other animals. We are to Evolutionists not much more than a souped-up gorilla, and that there is no God, nor intelligent designer. And I say to that, “Really? Let’s take a look at that.”
In fact, there is a whole chapter in my book dedicated to this topic. Let’s take a look at this point. Let’s take a look at Man.
When you really examine this, Man is a universe apart from the next most intelligent creature on the face of the earth. Dolphins, whales and chimps are fascinating creatures and they are pretty intelligent. But, the smartest chimp in the world doesn’t hold a candle to a two year old human. Not only in their intelligence, but also in the world-changing capabilities that two year olds can have as they mature and grow.
A chimp swings in a tree, eats bananas, and slings poop. That’s all they do, and that’s all they’ve ever done. Humans on the other hand build space shuttles and go into space. We build spaceships and go to the Moon. We build airplanes and rocket ourselves around the planet. We build submarines and go under water. We build cities. We build automobiles. We build interstate highways. We build Internets and computers. We are as gods with a little “g” to the rest of the animal life on this planet. Humans are a universe apart from the next most intelligent living thing.
How did Evolution make that giant leap? Where in the world are the intermediate intelligent species? In my book I have this list titled, “We’re the Only Ones That…” I go down this list, and the list is astounding! It blows people away when they read it. They say, “I never thought of this.”
In the eighth segment of our interview with Pastor Carl Gallups concerning the existence of God, he’ll answer that difficult question, “What about those who have never heard the Gospel?”