I will begin this post with two postulates:
1) God has created this universe;
2) He has brought man in this universe with some purpose.
I am not claiming here that these two postulates are true, or that I can prove them to be true. But I want to show here that if these two postulates are true, then God will always be the God of the gaps. Anyone who will be reading this post should not forget that there is an “if” clause in the last sentence.
Now I will begin with the supposition that God has created this universe. If God has created this universe, then he could have created it in four different ways:
1) He created it in such a way that there was no necessity for Him to intervene in it after creation;
2) After creation he intervened in it, but these interventions were a bare minimum, that is, he intervened only when these were absolutely necessary. In order to clarify my point here, I will say that he intervened only when he found that without his intervention the universe would come to a standstill;
3) He created the universe in such a way that in order to keep it going he had to make very frequent interventions in it;
4) God’s total intervention after creation.
If it was the purpose of God to keep mankind crippled in every possible way, then he would have adopted either the third or the fourth way while creating the universe. This is because in these two cases mankind, in spite of her having sufficient intelligence and reasoning power, will fail to unveil the secrets of nature, because in almost every phenomenon of nature that she will decide to study she will ultimately find that there always remains an unknown factor, for which she will have no explanation. For her the book of nature will thus remain closed forever. But if it was God’s purpose that mankind be master of his creation, then it is quite natural for him that he would try to keep the book of nature as much open to her as possible, so that with the little intelligence human species has been endowed with she will be able to decipher the language of nature, and with that acquired knowledge she will also be able to improve the material conditions of her life. In that case God will try to adopt the policy of maximum withdrawal from his creation. He will create the universe in such a way that without his intervention the created world will be able to unfold itself. However, that does not mean that he will never intervene. He will definitely intervene when without his intervention the created world would become stagnant. In such a scenario human beings will be able to give an explanation of almost all physical events in scientific language. But in those cases where God has actually intervened, she will fail to do so.
So I think there is no reason for us to be ashamed of the “God of the gaps” argument. Yes, if God has created the universe, and if God’s purpose was that mankind be master of his creation, then he would try to keep as little gap in his creation as possible. But the minimum gap that would be ultimately left can never be bridged by any sort of scientific explanation. God will also reside in that gap. Why should we be ashamed of that?
The whole matter can be seen from another angle. Those who strongly believe that God has created this universe also believe that he created it alone. Now is it reasonable to believe that a God, who is capable of creating such a vast universe alone, is not capable enough to keep a proof of his existence in the created world? So I think it is more reasonable to believe that while creating the universe God has also kept a proof of his existence in something created. This proof is open to us all, but we have not found it, because we have not searched for it. So even if it is the case that God has never intervened in the created world after its creation, still there will be a gap in this natural world, purposefully left by God, for which science will find no explanation. This will be the ultimate gap that can only be filled up by invoking God.
So it is quite logical that a God who will create human beings with a purpose will always prefer to be the God of the gaps. Yes, if we were really created by some God, and if it was not God’s desire that we be some sort of semi-savage beast with no knowledge about how nature works, then it makes quite a good sense if I say that in that case God would try to keep the book of nature as much open to us as possible (policy of maximum withdrawal). In such a case mankind will also be able to explain almost everything of nature without invoking God. But then this “ability to explain almost everything of nature without invoking God” will not prove that there is no God, because it might also be the case that this ability is God’s design, God’s plan.
Let me give one example for making my point clear. Let A be one most obvious fact of nature, and let D be one natural phenomenon that follows from A. Let us also suppose that D does not directly follow from A, but that there are some intermediate steps. A causes B, then B causes C, then C causes D. In order to be more precise here let us say that A means dark clouds gathering in the sky, and that D means lightning. We know very well that lightning does not always take place whenever there are dark clouds in the sky. So we will modify the above chain from A to D in this way: A causes B, but B does not always cause C. Instead of C, it sometimes causes C1. When B causes C1, there is no lightning. But when B causes C, in that case only lightning occurs.
A – B – C – D (Lightning)
A – B – C1– No lightning
Now let us suppose that there is a God, and let us also suppose that after creating the universe he has not intervened in it at all. So, all the processes from A to D will be natural. In that case if man wills, then one day she will be able to understand the whole natural process here. She will understand what lightning is, how and when it occurs, and with that knowledge it can be hoped that one day she will also be able to protect herself and her property from lightning.
Now let us suppose that after creation God has frequently intervened in his creation, but his intervention is not total, but only partial. Let us also suppose that God has chosen the above case of lightning for his intervention. That means lightning can never take place unless he wills. When he decides to punish mankind by sending lightning, then only B can cause C; otherwise in every other case B causes C1. In this case the whole chain from A to D will be broken at B. Human beings will never understand how B can naturally cause C, and so she will never understand how D naturally follows from A. So lightning will forever remain a mystery to her.
Now let us suppose that God’s intervention in this universe is total, that is, behind every natural phenomenon there is the hand of God. In that case mankind will understand nothing of nature, and she will remain as ignorant as a savage. In this world her fate will be no better than birds and beasts, and her condition will remain as miserable and helpless as those birds and beasts in front of natural calamities.
But if God wills that mankind be almost equal to him in the knowledge of things in nature, and if he also wills that she live in this world with some dignity and not like birds and beasts, then he will create the universe in such a way that almost all the phenomena in nature can take place naturally without his intervention. In that case he will adopt the policy of maximum withdrawal. He will intervene only in those cases where his intervention is absolutely necessary. One such case is the genetic code. Genetic code is information code, and those who believe that there is a God try to make a point here.
It is said that information code cannot naturally arise from space, time, force, field, matter and energy. Some intelligence is required, and nature does not possess that intelligence. Only God possesses that intelligence, and therefore only God can generate information code. If what is said is true, then I will say that mankind will never understand how information code can naturally arise from space, time, force, field, matter and energy. It will forever remain a mystery to her.
My thesis presented here has at least one merit. It can successfully explain as to why nature has opened her secrets to mankind, whereas proponents of accidental origin of man cannot give any reason as to why nature has done so. If their theory was correct, then human beings also could have led a life just like other higher primates; chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas and orangutans. That mankind has not done so and that instead she has been able to raise a civilization and lead a life with some dignity and self-respect shows that nature has taken a special care for us and equipped us accordingly.