A Perpetual Motion Machine 
by M.C. Escher

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Copyright © April 20, 2012 Douglas W. Jerving.
All Rights Reserved.

On my way home from work the other night I listened to a bit of the Coast to Coast radio show. Host George Noory was discussing Christianity with an atheist (who’s name I did not catch). The atheist made an interesting point that ran like this:

Christians say that the universe had a beginning. But if that is true, what existed before it? Theists answer that God existed before the universe, which was created by Him. Then where did God come from? The theist’s answer is that God exists from eternity. The atheist’s reply is that if we assume a god has always preexisted, and is the cause of all that exists because he preexists, it is no less possible that the material universe has always pre-existed and is the cause of all that exists. Therefore, we may trade one eternally existent cause for the other without ending in a logical dilemma. Although faith was never discussed by the atheist, either argument is simply a matter of belief in a set of unprovable philosophical presuppositions.

I must give the atheist credit for at least recognizing the (seemingly) logical inconsistency in the theist’s argument. If there is a preexistence of anything, then why can it not be merely the preexistence of everything? Why does there have to be a god? It is logical that if God always existed from eternity, that the universe may have existed from all eternity as well, or even that the only truly eternally existent “thing” may very well be the universe. Hence, to the atheist, materialism seems to be as logical, or even “more logical”, (can one be “less logical”?), than God.

I suspect that the atheist is already aware of the basic facts that run contrary to his belief in an eternally existent universe. He won’t admit them on the airwaves however, basically because he is an evangelist for his religion. First, the laws of thermodynamics say that matter can neither be created nor destroyed, but only that it changes state. That much may lend itself to the atheistic hope in the eternalness of matter. But that is just the first part of thermodynamics, since, as matter continuously changes state, it continues to lose energy, going from more complex to less complex. The universe shows all the signs of growing old and decaying; of getting colder and darker and ultimately dying. This implies that the universe must have had a beginning, and that it will have an end. If the universe had a beginning, and we know scientifically that it did, what was before it? Materialism just does not work. You may not want to believe in God, but you really can’t be honest if you insist on an eternal material universe. At least you can’t be honest if you insist on scientific verifiability, and the validity of the first and second laws of thermodynamics, and then you toss in a fairytale preexistent matter.

Even more important, the Atheist’s argument quickly disintegrates when the human race’s general sense of ethics is considered. Ethics implies that there is nothing that exists without ethics no matter whose ethical system is in place. We live in an ethical universe. It is not possible to have ethics without having an ethical standard. Keep in mind that ethics is not mystical, ethereal, pie in the sky stuff. It is where rubber and road meet. It is where mind and body come together and challenge each other to an arm wrestle. Mind and matter coexisting is a kind of empirical data sheet that implies the existence of an ethical standard. Ethics is not just a list of dos and don’t s. Ethics are why we do or don’t. Ethics implies a presupposed list of non-material things not explained by materialism. Things like love, hate, joy, peace, angst, pride, lust, revulsion, fear, animosity, forgiveness, indebtedness, freedom, concern, dismay, and so on. Our five senses may begin in the body, but they really do not exist independent of our minds that interpret the data.

It is illogical to believe in an eternally existent material universe without God while at the same time assuming the existence of these immaterial “things” that we all know and experience. Since all these immaterial things exist, and only a solipsist in a Humpty-Dumpty world would deny their real existence, then materialism is a farce. Materialism does not explain the authorship of things that are immaterial and every atheist knows it! The atheist believes in a Cheshire cat that he can make appear or disappear at his own whim just by smiling the right way. However cunning the stunt, ethics is the proof that atheism is just a one ring circus.

Ethics is an eternal factor that the atheist can never reconcile to his philosophy despite the fact that it is so simple and obvious. That is why the Bible says “The fool has said in his heart there is no God.” Despite what on the surface appears to maintain logical consistency, the common man knows he is being lied to by the evangelists of Atheism. We see clearly, and know truly that the followers of the religion of materialism conveniently ignore the evidences against their claim. They are charlatans moving empty shells around the table. But they are only lying to themselves. The rest of the human race obviously has more common sense than them.


Doug Jerving is the publisher of the You may contact him at


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