Most people regard atheism as the opposite of faith. But it’s not; it takes a lot of faith to be an atheist. Atheists claim to trust scientific observation and natural processes. They deny there’s a God who created life because the supernatural is outside the realm of natural processes and scientific observation.
Based on observation, scientists believe there was a beginning to the universe called the Big Bang. If the universe had a beginning, how did life begin within the universe? Atheists have a dilemma answering the question, “How did life begin?”. There are two prominent theories:
Theory #1: Life on Earth sprang suddenly from a mixture of just the right chemical ingredients and an initiating source of energy such as lightning.
Amino acids, the basic building blocks of DNA, have been produced in a laboratory from naturally-occurring chemicals and an electrical spark. However, they weren’t alive. Scientific observation tells us that life comes from life, through reproduction. To believe that life sprang suddenly from a chemical mixture and lightning requires a leap of faith.
Theory #2: Life on Earth originated elsewhere in the universe and was transplanted here.
This belief is popular among some scientists, including Carl Sagan. However, it doesn’t address the fundamental question: “How did life begin?”. It only transfers the question to another place in the universe. Furthermore, since no one was around to observe whether life on Earth was transplanted from elsewhere, this belief also requires a leap of faith.
Any response to the question, “How did life begin?” is not based on scientific observation; it’s based on faith. As you can see, it takes faith to be an atheist.