That’s happened so many times before - both online and in real life… A well-meaning coworker/neighbor/stranger with a zealous look in his eyes (and it’s usually his, not hers) starts telling me that if I only sat down and gave them a minute/hour/day of my time, they’d give me their unique, foolproof, absolutely indisputable argument why God is real. (And/or how the aliens walk among us, and/or why Elvis shot JFK, and/or why Bigfoot is actually an unshaven Chuck Norris.)
You see, there’s this beautiful phrase, “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” The bigger your claim, the more evidence you need to provide to support it. For example, if you accuse a man of murder, you need to be able to prove it beyond the shadow of doubt by providing the murder weapon, the motive, the forensic evidence, etc. If you claim that your elderly neighbor is a former SS executioner who has avoided capture for 70 years, you’ll need to obtain his fingerprints, DNA samples, testimony of surviving witnesses, prove that his papers are fake, and so on.
The bigger the claim, the more evidence you need. Therefore, when you make the biggest claim of them all (there’s an invisible man in the sky who sends forth ghosts to impregnate unsuspecting Middle-Eastern virgins), you need to have enough evidence to fill a dozen stadiums. And no, dear crusader, before you interrupt - philosophical questions, deliberate misinterpretations of scientific data and hallucinations experienced by people in the wilderness do not count as proof. They’re not what one would call ordinary evidence, to be sure, but that’s not quite the “extraordinary” we’re going for here.
If you want my undivided attention, show me a miracle. Pray and bring my dog back to life. Sprinkle some holy water and get an amputee’s limb to grow back. At the very least, turn my Subway foot-long into a thousand delicious sandwiches. (And/or multiply a thousandfold this here tray of sushi.) But you can’t. I will say that’s because those are just stories and allegories written down by shepherds over 2,000 years ago. You will say that’s because “God works in mysterious ways” and that’s not how faith works, anyway. And you know what? I’m fine with that. But until you can give me an extraordinary proof for your extraordinary claim, let’s just go our separate ways, shall we?