It is at this point that many readers will squirm, but such a reaction is simply not justified when considering the previous two premises. Though the idea of admitting the existence of God may not be palatable to certain readers, if they desire to base their beliefs off what is known rather than what stands in contradiction to reality, they must abandon naturalism and admit that God is the creator of the universe.
The conclusion is true because it logically follows from the premises and both premises are true. To review on why the conclusion is true:
1) All things are either mutable (movable and changeable) or immutable (immovable and unchangeable)
2) If something is movable then it requires a creator because an infinite regress is impossible
3) An infinite regress is impossible because it would never allow events to come about
4) Immutable objects are above an infinite regress because they do not move and therefore cannot be measured by time
5) Everything we experience is mutable, therefore requiring a creator
6) By definition, the creator must be God (due to what is needed in order to be immutable)
It is amazing that an argument formulated around 1,300 years ago still rings true for today and is validated by modern science. At the time St. John composed his argument, the prevalent belief among most scholars was that the universe was eternal. This is why the Epicureans had no problem saying that all matter arose randomly and that the universe was the subject of chaos and not order. It is against such Epicureanism that St. John and other Church Fathers wrote against and formulated their first cause arguments.
In our modern day Christians fight an ever-growing population of atheists, pagans, and weakness theologians. This argument seeks not only to demonstrate that God necessarily exists, but that He exists as theologians have said for the past two thousand years. For the atheist who would deny that God exists and cry out that Christians cannot prove God exists, we look to the very nature of matter to prove that God necessarily exists. This is not some creative “God of the gaps” argument, but instead shows that by using science and logic, we come to realize that the material world cannot be its own cause and requires an outside cause. By definition, that cause must be God.
Against pagans and weakness theologians, the Damascene argument shows us that we cannot have a multiplicity of gods or a weak god as the creator. If there were a multiplicity of gods then there is no promise that creation would get done, that order would remain, or that the gods could work together. If a weak god who simply moved matter together did creation, then he too would be subject to an infinite regress and wouldn’t be God.
Thus, the Damascene argument, using both observable evidence and logic, shows that the monotheistic God does exist. Not as a “God did it” argument or as a leap of faith, but as a necessary conclusion to the question, “Where did matter and energy come from?”
This was a scheduled post. I am currently out of town and subsequently have turned comments off since I cannot moderate or interact with commenters. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns about this post, please feel free to contact me.