Believing in God

To have successfully revised for this topic you need to know the following:

  • The main features of a religious upbringing in one religion and how it may lead to belief in God. 
  • How religious experiences, as seen in the numinous, conversion, miracles and prayer, may lead to belief in God. 
  • The argument from design and how it may, or may not, lead to belief in God. 
  • The argument from causation and how it may, or may not, lead to belief in God. 
  • Why scientific explanations of the origins of the world may lead some people not to believe in God. 
  • How one religion responds to scientific explanations of the origins of the world. 
  • Why unanswered prayers may lead some people not to believe in God. 
  • How one religion responds to the problem of unanswered prayers. 
  • Why evil and suffering may lead some people not to believe in God. 
  • How one religion responds to the problem of evil and suffering. 
  • How two television and/or radio programmes and/or films about religion may affect a person’s attitude to belief in God.

Required keywords:

  • agnosticism
  • atheism
  • conversion
  • free will
  • miracle
  • moral evil
  • natural evil
  • numinous
  • omni-benevolent
  • omnipotent
  • omniscient
  • prayer

Take a definitions spin quiz:


B questions

Give two reasons for your opinion

  • Do you think that scientific explanations of the origins of the world lead to atheism?
  • Do you think that the design argument proves the existence of God?
  • Do you think there is enough evidence for scientific explanations of the origins of the world?
  • Do you think religious parents should raise their children to believe in God?
  • Do you think religious experiences lead to a belief in God?
  • Do you think the world is designed?
  • Do you think the causation argument proves that God exists?
  • Do you think the Big Bang theory explains how the universe was created?
  • Do you think there should only be one religious response to the scientific explanations of the world?
  • Do you unanswered prayers lead people to not believe in God?
  • Do you think there are good reasons to explain why God does not seem to answer prayers?
  • Do you think that suffering and evil mean that God does not exist?
  • Do you think natural evil proves that God does not exist?
  • Do you think films affect someone's faith in God?

C questions

  • Explain how Christians respond to the problem of evil & suffering
  • Explain why a religious upbringing may lead to belief in God/to not believing in God.
  • Explain why an answered prayer may lead to a belief in God/to not believe in God.
  • Explain why the argument from design may lead to belief in God.
  • Explain the argument from causation.
  • Explain why the scientific explanation of the origin of the world may lead some people not to believe in God.
  • Explain why some religious people agree with the scientific explanations of the origin of the world.
  • Explain how some religious people respond to the problem of unanswered prayers. 
  • Explain why suffering and evil cause problems for people who believe in God.
  • Explain how one programme or film may affect a person's attitude to belief in God.

D questions

  • “Miracles do not happen today”
  • "Religious experiences do not prove the existence of God."
  • "All children should have a religious upbringing."
  • "Religious experiences do not prove the existence of God."
  • "The design argument proves the existence of God."
  • "The causation argument does not prove the existence of God."
  • "Scientific explanations for the creation of the universe have proved that God does not exist."
  • "Religious responses to scientific cosmology prove God exists."
  • "Unanswered prayers are proof that God does not exist."
  • "Unanswered prayers do not cause a problem for religious people."
  • "Humans are the cause of all suffering and evil."
  • "God should not allow evil and suffering to happen."
  • "Programmes and films cannot affect a person's belief in God."

In your answer you should refer to at least one religion.

(i) Do you agree? Give reasons for your opinion.(3)

(ii) Give reasons why some people may disagree with you.(3)


Previous lesson materials

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