The Instigator
Christian_Debater
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Seeksecularism
Con (against)
Winning
15 Points

Does God Exist?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Seeksecularism
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/6/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,451 times Debate No: 54138
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (42)
Votes (3)

 

Christian_Debater

Pro

This is a redo of my debate with Seeksecularism. I was busy and didn't have enough time to respond to the debate. We are restarting.

I will repost what Seeksecularism did for Round 1:

First round will be acceptance
Second round will be opening statements
Third round will be first rebuttal
Fourth round will be second rebuttal and closing statements

Definition of God: the omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent creator and sustainer of the universe as described in the Bible- I'll allow my opponent to choose which version of the bible to reference.

It is important to note that since this topic is in the form of a question, both sides will have a burden of proof.

Format is still the same, we are just starting over. May the LORD GOD bless you all, and thanks Seesecularism for your patience with me.
Seeksecularism

Con

I accept the debate challenge. I look forward to some stimulated exchanges that will hopefully challenge my worldview and better understand a competing one.
Debate Round No. 1
Christian_Debater

Pro

Sorry for procrastinating on this. So, let's get this debate started.

I believe God exists, but I can't fundamentally put a huge stamp and say, "There, he exists." It's more of a logical understanding to see God's existence in reality. So if my opponent is expecting a guaranteed, factual answer, then I am sorry to disappoint him.

To begin, if we look at how perfectly tuned existence is, it makes you wonder - can this all be just a fluke? Doesn't it just seem too perfect at times? Just what is the mathematical chance that existence could be the way it is? Can we even reliably calculate that? Regardless, I would like to just list a few things, and briefly summarize them.

1) Bees
Without bees we all basically die. They pollinate the plants and make them able to be eaten. Isn't that interesting? Their entire existence is key to our survival.

2) Condensation
Condensation has two key things in my opinion that are awesome for us. The first being it balances water. It is like a giant sprinkler. Water is absorbed and turned into clouds, and because of wind (which we can get into later), it moves clouds around the Earth. The clouds, once enough water is absorbed, rain down and water the Earth. Moreover, the clouds themselves protect us. They absorb the sun's rays which helps cool down the earth.

3) Instincts
A Cat knowing to eat specific parts when her babies are born, knowing to lick their gentiles to make sure they go to the bathroom, etc. Instincts are basically pre-programmed actions.

4) Trees
What we breathe out they breathe in. What they breathe out we breathe in. Trees are the reason we exist (besides bees of course). Without them we would have no air to breathe.

5) Laws
There are many laws to existence. There is the theory of gravity which basically theorizes why we are stuck to the ground. To keep this section short, there are things in existence that are put in place that cannot change - you jump you fall, you throw a ball and it travels a distance equivalent to the force you through it at, etc. These things were put in place, how?

I have limited it to 5 simple topics. This makes it easier for you to refute them and not run out of space. My main point is, there are things in existence that are too good to be a fluke. It can't be a coincidence.

Speaking on coincidences, I want to say one last thing before I end my opening statement. Person A and Person B meet at the store at the same time. What a coincidence. However, it is only a coincidence for Person A. Person B planned the entire scenario. They got Person A's schedule, knew they'd be at the store, and made sure to find them there. My point is that things that seem to be a coincidence can't always be a coincidence.

So in conclusion, my entire argument is that existence cannot be a coincidence. It has to be pre-planned when there are many things in existence that seem too perfect to be a fluke.

I'd like to thank my opponent for this debate, and apologize for the time I have made him wait for such a small argument on my side. I have just been busy, I apologize Seeksecularism and really admire your patience with me. Thank you and may the LORD GOD bless you.
Seeksecularism

Con

I want to first start off by thanking Christiandebater for setting up this debate. We had some issues with our previous debate due to time restrictions, and it was very generous of Christiandebater to set up another debate that would better adhere to both of our schedules. In the spirit of fairness, I will keep my 2 opening arguments from the previous debate encase Christiandebater has been pondering those arguments and his responses. Since Christiandebater also went first in this debate, I'll save my responses to his opening statements for round 2, so that we each get the same amount of rebuttal time. In accepting my burden of proof, I will be making a much stronger claim than my opponent and argue that the statement "God does not exist" is a factual claim and can be reasonably established as such by using factually true premises that logical conclude that God does not exist. In addition, I will also present an inductive case that God does not exist and preferable to Occam's Razor. So let me begin by presenting my first argument; the evidential argument from gratuitous suffering.

1) If God exists, gratuitous suffering does not exist.
2) Gratuitous suffering does exist
3) Therefore, God does not exist

The above argument is logically valid via Modus tollens, and the conclusion will necessarily follow if both premises are true.

Premise 1: This premise is true given the definition of God mentioned in round 1. I can explicitly demonstrate this as follows:

omnipotence: unlimited power to act
omniscience: unlimited knowledge
omnibenevolence: wholly good

An omnipotent being would have the power to eliminate or prevent any gratuitous suffering, otherwise he would not have unlimited power to act.
An omniscience being would know of any gratuitous suffering, otherwise he would not have unlimited knowledge.
An omnibenevolent being would want to prevent or eliminate any gratuitous suffering, otherwise he would not be wholly good.

I believe I've demonstrated that premise 1 is definitionaly true and will be uncontroversial. Should a deity lack any of the 3 properties above, then the conclusion of my argument would not follow, but that being would also not be the greatest conceivable being, not be worthy of worship, nor be God as defined in round 1 and would therefore be irrelevant to this debate.

Premise 2: This seems true as just an obvious fact about reality. Because this is an evidential argument, all that has to be shown is that this premise is more probably true then false to conclude that God probably does not exist. All that is necessary for God to not exist is one instance of gratuitous suffering as that would call into question either God's omniscience, omnipotence, or omnibenevolence. So why think it's more probably true then not?
1) Child suffering: all one needs to do is walk down the ICU of any children's hospital or cancer treatment center to see that children needlessly suffering and die agonizing deaths every day across the globe. Any trip to a 3rd world country will show children needlessly suffering by starvation, dying agonizing deaths to completely curable diseases, and dying in childbirth and infancy due to intolerable living conditions.
2) Natural disasters: Events such as tsunamis, earthquakes, and diseases are not limited to third world countries. These are natural events that would be under an omnipotent and omnibenevolent being's control. But it is not obvious why this being would inflict such seemingly needless suffering on its creations. Natural disasters actually seem arbitrary, and do not discriminate how, who, when, or where they inflict suffering.
3) Animal (non-human) suffering. For billions of years, biological organisms have been reproducing and dying due to the process of natural selection. The majority of species have gone extinct in the history of life on this planet and those that still remain still suffering immensely in nature today due to competition with one another and the struggle for survival in their natural habitats.

All three of these lines of evidence give us a powerful inductive case that gratuitous suffering is vastly more probable to exist then not. Giving us strong reason to believe that premise 2 is true and that it necessarily follows that god does not exist.

In addition, I'd like to give an inference to the best explanation case against the existence of God. What this means is a list of facts about reality and conclude that the thesis "God does not exist" better explains the facts of reality than the thesis "God does exist." Thus by Occam's Razor it is more reasonable to believe that God does not exist. Please examine the following facts:

1) If God existed, we'd expect religious beliefs to be universal, meaning they were uniform over geography and static unchanging with time. Though we observe religious beliefs to vary geographically and adapt over time. There are many competing and contradictory religions and god's hiddenness is still a problem.
2) If God existed, we'd expect religious doctrinal stability. Holy books would be eternal and unchanging unlike how scripture dealing with slavery and treatment of women has been affected by social progress and many unpleasant passages are ignored or explained away.
3) If God existed, we'd expect moral teachings to be transcendent and progressive across the globe. Instead we find inconsistent and tribal moral teachings geographically.
4) If God existed, we'd expect sacred texts to give us accurate and specific information about the nature of reality, not scattered and vague information that is explained by metaphor.
5) If God existed, we'd expect biological forms to be designed i.e. simple and efficient, not complex and inefficient, nor would they suffer from the twists and turns of evolution.
6) If God existed, we'd expect to find mind and body to be separate (dualism), and not have overwhelming evidence for monism and physicalism. Effecting your brain physically should not also effect your mind, but it does.
7) If God existed, you'd expect no evil, not the apparent random, gratuitous evil we observe.
8) If God existed, you'd expect the cosmos to be perfect, and not the random chaotic mess that we observe nor the appearance that life on earth is insignificant as far as the cosmos is concerned.

Now I have no doubt that a theist could give a defense for each and every one of these facts about reality. My argument is that by creating auxiliary hypothesis to explain away all these tensions, it makes the belief that "God exists" sufficiently ad hoc and therefore less likely to be true. And thus by Occam's Razor, the more preferable position would be that "God does not exist," as the inference to the best explanation of the facts we encounter in reality.

In anticipation of Christiandebater's rebuttals and in the interests of saving time and space, if he wishes to object to my arguments with the concept of Free Will, I'd only ask that he clearly define what he means by Free Will. Out of respect for him, I do not wish to attack positions of Free Will that he does not present. Thanks for your time, and I look forward to your response.
Debate Round No. 2
Christian_Debater

Pro

First, I"d like to just post the definitions my opponent used for his argument:

Omnipotent:
adjective
1.
almighty or infinite in power, as God.
2.
having very great or unlimited authority or power.
noun
3.
an omnipotent being.
4.
the Omnipotent, God.

Resource : http://dictionary.reference.com...

Omniscience:
noun
1.
the quality or state of being omniscient.
2.
infinite knowledge.
3.
( initial capital letter ) God.

Resource: http://dictionary.reference.com...

Omnibenevolent:

(Adjective) Perfectly good.

Resource : http://www.definition-of.com...

According to my opponent"s logic, all I have to do is disprove one of his premises, and then his argument are incorrect (this is because of Modus Tollens).

Premise 1: If God exists, gratuitous suffering does not exist.

Indeed, I agree with your three statements. You forget something though. An omnibenevolent being wouldn"t rape somebody, correct? Or force somebody to do something they didn"t want to, correct? That wouldn"t be perfectly good or all loving. Therefore, what you are asking is not omnibenevolent. Of course, God can still do his best to stop such situations, but because he is omnibenevolent, he does not force people to love him or force them to do his bidding. Therefore, suffering can exist while God has all three of those properties.

Premise 2: If any suffering can be proven to exist, God doesn"t exist.

This is an unfair statement again in my opinion. I have shown God cannot force people to do what they want if he is omnibenevolent. If he were, to say, possess someone and manipulate all their actions like they were his toy, would he still be omnibenevolent? No. So with that, I"ll address your points.

I can answer all of these at once. You assume all these things are bad, and then God must not be what you claim, correct? What if there is a reason behind these events that attributes to all the aspects you noted? If God is omniscience, then that means he has infinite knowledge. Therefore, there can be a loving reason behind all of these actions that you and I cannot comprehend. It is impossible for you to find an argument that disproves God with those attributes because with omniscience, God can always have a way to be omnibenevolent beyond our understanding.

1) So? You are assuming that all religions believe in God alone. Some religions worship things like the wind, does that mean they worship God? No. Religions don"t all worship God.

2) Well, since I"m Christian, I can honestly say it hasn"t changed. Moreover, when you do research on it, you find that the reason Catholicism and Protestantism exists is because people tried to change the original meaning. As for modern times changing definitions and what-not, that is true. However, even the Bible states not to do that.

3) Are you basically saying that we should be forced to do whatever God wants? Wouldn"t that be, if God purposely forced us all to do what he wanted, not omnibenevolent?

4) Depends on what text you are talking about. Actually, the Bible mentions cars in the future.

5) They don"t. You can try to prove evolution if you want. I have tons of sources for this.

6) That is not necessarily true. It is an opinionated statement. If you want to elaborate on this, that is fine.

7) That would be like God raping us to be good. Forcing us to do what he says. That wouldn"t be omnibenevolent.

8) Omniscience and omnipotent. It appears random to us, but it can be perfectly planned (especially when you look at earth).

I don"t need to go onto free will, but I"ll keep it in the back of my thoughts. My main argument is that you use the whole definitions of omnibenevolent and omniscience when it suits your argument, but not when it goes against your argument. You can never, ever, judge God"s actions when he is omniscience because you can never know his true meaning behind it. Therefore, it is impossible for you to state because of ____ God does not exist because he is omniscience. Basically, if he knows everything and can do anything (omnipotent),that means the reasons behind his actions can never be fully understood from our human perspective. Moreover, since he"s omnibenelovent, his kindness can never be understood because his kindness is on a level we will never understand either.

I thank my opponent again for this debate. I haven"t had much time, especially because I"ve been training a lot. I look forward to my opponent"s refutals. Moreover, I am curious to his response to my refutals. God bless you all and thanks again for reading this.
Seeksecularism

Con

I want to start by thanking my opponent for his rebuttals. I want to focus on the argument that he presented to examine if the theist burden of proof has been met.

My opponent is articulating what is known as the argument from design. This is an attempt to infer the existence of God from apparent design or "coincidence" found in the natural world. This is probably the more convincing argument to laymen who believe in God, because it appeals to our innate bias for design. Combined with confirmation bias and our notoriously inaccurate intuitions towards probabilities (especially coincidences), it's no wonder this argument is so common. But the argument doesn't hold up to philosophical scrutiny. The argument as formulated by my opponent takes the form of the logical fallacy know as "argument from personal incredulity" (a form of argument from ignorance or "God of the gaps"):

P is too incredible (or: I cannot imagine how P could possibly be true); therefore P must be false.

Where in my opponent's case, P would be coincidence or an example of a natural phenomenon provided not being coincidence. Just compare some of my opponent's quotes to the above form:

-"if we look at how perfectly tuned existence is, it makes you wonder - can this all be just a fluke?"
-"My point is that things that seem to be a coincidence can't always be a coincidence."
-"my entire argument is that existence cannot be a coincidence. It has to be pre-planned when there are many things in existence that seem too perfect to be a fluke."

This are very strong inference claims, but they are not justified. The inference falls short for 3 reasons.

1) The weak and misleading inference from coincidences to design
2) The fact that there are alternative explanations of how natural things came to be as they are.
3) The argument at best could only establish the existence of a designer- not God.

On the first point, appealing to a coincidence or probability is meaningless unless you know the same size. Highly improbable events happen all the time due to the large numbers of permutations within a known sample size. And probabilities can be made to seem even more spectacular as you move further back a causal chain. Our intuitions concerning probabilities are also notoriously unreliable. For example what do you think the probability is that you share a birthday with someone in your class? The answer may surprise you that it's greater than 50% as explained here:

http://m.youtube.com...

Not only are our intuitions concerning probability not reliable, but our intuitions concerning design are too. Humans have a bias to attribute design even when it may not exist due to being surrounded by designed things all the time. An inference to design is justified when a structure exhibits both simplicity and efficiency. By simplicity I mean the ability to easily duplicate the structure. Despite the complex appearance of a 747 airplane, they are still simple structures as drawings exists showing exactly how each part fits together and we can recreate them. A natural dam however would not be simple, as it would be very difficult to recreate every stick, mud pile, log, etc. By efficient I mean that each part is designed with as few as parts necessary in a logical pattern. But when we examine the natural world we find that nature (especially life) is very complex and inefficient. These complexities and inefficiencies give an atheist a mirror argument from poor design:

http://en.wikipedia.org...

Our poor intuitions involving coincidence and design make the inference from the appearance of design and coincidence to a designer one we cannot reliably make.

On the second point, all 5 examples that my opponent listed have natural explanations. This makes it highly susceptible to Occam's Razor which states to employ the least number of entities necessary for explanation. Since natural explanations all exist for my opponents 5 evidences, I will not dedicate anymore time here as they are not only compatible, but preferable under the statement "God does not exist."

On my third point, this argument at best leaves us with a designer- not God. There is no piece of logic that allows my opponent to reliably infer omnipotence, omniscience, omnibenevolence, nor the idea that this designer is personal, i.e. answers prayers etc from the appearance of design. We are also left with a question: who designed the designer? When you explain one unknown thing with another unknown thing, you've actually explained nothing.

It should come as no surprise that appeals to coincidences and design arguments have not withstood philosophical scrutiny historically either. One only needs to do a few brief searches on the web to find critiques of design arguments, the failures of creationism and intelligent design to penetrate the scientific community, and naturalistic explanations as to why there is an appearance of design. I think it is safe to attribute my opponents opening argument as a "God of the Gaps" move, and can be reasonably dismissed.

I want to turn my attention next to the defense of my argument from gratuitous suffering

Premise 1: I'm not sure what my opponents specific objection is here. I'm not suggesting that God control people or rape them. I'm also not saying that suffering can't exist, I'm saying gratuitous suffering can't exist- meaning needless suffering. If God is perfectly good, then why do we have evidence that needless suffering such as child suffering, natural disasters, and animal suffering exist? What is the reason for either causing this, or permitting this? I also find the statement "God can do is his best to stop such situations" strange. We are referring to an omnipotent being, but this sounds like you are implying he can fall short?

Premise 2: I don't think this is an unfair point as if one instance of needless suffering actually existed (regardless of if we knew about it) it would call into question the existence of God. If there was no reason for permitting the suffering and he didn't want to stop it, he wouldn't be omnibenevolent. If he couldn't stop it, he wouldn't be omnipotent. If he didn't know about it, he wouldn't be omniscient.

My opponent has also claimed that an omniscient being could have reasons for permitting sufferings that may not be available to us. This is an appeal to mystery and is commonly used by psychics, mediums, and dowsers to save their claims from refutation when presented with falsifying evidence. It renders their explanation ad hoc and therefore less likely to be true. Allow me to demonstrate this with the Anti-God hypothesis:

Imagine an omnipotent, omniscience, and omnimalevolent (perfectly evil) being. Now we can both agree that such a being does not exist, in fact its existence would seem absurd. There's too much love, laughter, and beauty in the world to reasonably infer the existence of Anti-God. In fact, we have an evidential argument from gratuitous love to reasonably infer the existence of Anti-God. So why wouldn't a mirror argument for suffering work? Appealing to mystery as my opponent did, works equally well to save Anti-God from refutation. For example: His omniscience is above ours, his omnimalevolence could hold justified reasons for permitting things like love to bring about greater sufferings such as when we lose those that we love. Now I'm perfectly justified in rejecting the existence of Anti-God, but my opponent is not if he accepts that his appeal to mystery will save God from refutation, as Anti-God can be defended using the exact same tactics.

I want to end with a defense of my final argument and stress that all of these facts are well established in both scientific and philosophical communities, so I'll only leave short responses for them. My argument is not that any one of these disproves God, but that the explanation for these facts is better explained by "God does not exist." In order to maintain that God does exist, my opponent had to create auxiliary explanations to justify his belief- thus making it ad hoc and therefore less likely to be true. My opponent needs to explain why these facts are better explained on theism, then on atheism.

1) You've missed the point. If one religion were true, you wouldn't expect competing religions- you'd expect everyone to be the same religion. However if religions were not true and human fabrications, you'd expect to find competing religions like we do.

2) The point is that the bible endorses slavery, the subjugation of women, and genocide. These passages have been interpreted as such in the past, but then explained away as society made moral progress. It's evident of human invention, and not Devine revelation.

3) No, I'm saying that morality should be universally known. Morality shouldn't vary geographically like it does if an absolute standard of morality existed.

4) The bible does not predicate cars anymore than psychics predict the future. It's an appeal to someone's confirmation bias. Without specific, falsifiable claims any vague statement can be interpreted in such a way to fulfill someone's wishful thinking.

5) How we know evolution is true is a red herring. I'm appealing to scientific consensus.

6) This is not an opinion. The soul is necessary for a belief in the afterlife. We have no reason to believe the mind "survives" death, but we have every reason to believe it doesn't. It's why physical damage to the brain can result in permanent damage of the mind.

7) This is not so. If it is possible for me to choose good once, then it is logically possible for me to always chose good. Why didn't God create us (not control us) in such a way that we always choose good? God has perfectly free will, but cannot chose evil due do his omnibenevolence. Why can't we be created perfectly free in the same sense? Anyone who adheres to the doctrine of heaven already implicitly subscribes to this better state of affairs where everyone in heaven always freely chooses the good, so there's no reason why God can't do this.

8) The same is true for Anti-God

In summary, my opponents inference from coincidences is built on a fallacy of "argument from personal incredulity." The inference also turns out to be a very weak inference and even if sound would only demonstrate a designer. He still has a large burden of proof to demonstrate this designer is God as we defined, so based on this it seems safe to conclude that my opponent has not met his burden of proof. When examining the argument from gratuitous suffering his main objection is that an omniscient being might have reasons not available to us to permit suffering. But I've demonstrated how this move makes the claim ad hoc and less likely to be true by appealing to mystery. This same move could just as easily be used to defend the Anti-God hypothesis. And finally my inference to the best explanation has not been shown to be an unreasonable inference. As a formal hypothesis, "God does not exist" actually predicts all 8 facts, and no point of falsification has been provided for this hypothesis. Conversely all 8 of these facts would be considered falsifying points of theism, as "God does exist" would not predict them. Therefore, I think it is much more probably true that God does not exist, than that God does exist. I look forward to my opponents second rebuttals and closing statement.
Debate Round No. 3
Christian_Debater

Pro

Man you have no idea how happy I am that this is the final round. Regardless if I lose or not, I've just been busy in real life (especially with training). On a side note, if you live around Toronto, do you want to go to a sparring tournament with me? You can't use jiu-jitsu though, it's only striking.

Alright, let's begin. My opponent is arguing that because we don't specifically know why it is so perfect, does not mean it isn't because of God. The entire argument is that I am using God to fill in the blanks for what I do not understand. However, this is not the case at all. The reason I am stating these things infer that God exists, is because there is a point when something can't be random.

For example, I talked about instincts earlier. Is there any percentage of a chance that a cat knows to eat the placenta so her babies survive? Moreover, what is the chance that she knows how to lick their genitals so they can survive - they cannot go to the bathroom on their own. Lastly, how does she know exactly when they are to be weaned, and how to do it? Yet, as soon as they stop smelling like the nest, she forgets who they are. Isn't that interesting? It's not as if she consciously knows, she's programmed to know.

The key word is programmed.

I'd like to make a correlation with video games. When you play video games, is it a coincidence or random that the world operates as it does? No, it is all coded. Things are planned. The same is with computers and artificial intelligence. If you play a fighting game, a computer knows to do specific things at certain times against the player. It isn't a coincidence or without planning, it is coded.

My main point was that it is almost illogical to assume the world isn't planned. I hope my correlation provided a bit more reasoning as to why I say so. Moreover, I'd like to add onto my argument.

The whole notion that God is used as a filler is incorrect. I am not just saying God did it, and there is no explanation for it. There is an explanation, God did a process of steps to create everything. How? I do not know. We can find out eventually, but just because we know how a system works, does not mean God didn't create it.

I'll go back to my video game example. I know that if I do an uppercut, that the computer will do a spinning back kick. Therefore, I uppercut and then parry because I know the kick is coming. Just because I know the kick is coming, doesn't mean someone didn't program it to come. I hope that explains my perspective better.

Instead of refuting my arguments, my opponent just made his opinionated claim. Therefore, I will leave it as it is (especially to save characters).

As for my opponent's third point, you are assuming a designer needs to be created. How can you create something that always existed? The best correlation I can make is physics. Physics is the core property required for theories such as the big bang. Yet, it has to exist for existence. So I ask, how can a law exist without it being created? It always existed. The same is with God. Moreover, the fact that you are now starting to admit the plausibility of a designer proves my arguments have gained momentum to some degree. If there is a designer, they would be deemed as God - especially to create what has been created.

I disagree with my opponent's premise here. You can do the same with things such as evolution, the big bang theory, etc. Moreover, evolution hasn't withstood the same scrutiny, and I would gladly suggest you read the book "Darwin Retried" when you have the spare time. It, at some point, refers to a evolutionist who forwarded the theory of macro-evolution yet he disbelieved in evolution after his fruit fly experiments. You can find more information on the experiment by checking out resource 1. The ex-evolutionists' name is Richard Goldschmidt.(2).

Premise 1: My point is you can never judge God for that. The reason being, if he is omniscience he knows more then we ever do. Therefore, we may see it as useless, but it is not useless. Also, since he is omnibenevolent, when you mix that with omniscience, what we see as gratuitous suffering could be something completely different - especially since he is omnipotent. Basically, you can't argue any of this stuff with God having those properties.

Premise 2: Like I said, we can't state those things with God having the properties he has. We can never know better or more than him, or kindness as much as him.

Did I ever state there wasn't an anti-God? No I did not. You make a good argument, but it doesn't refute what I stated. The initial explanation for God, as you stated, can be used for anti-God. What the whole point is, even though it can be applied to both, does not refute they exist. My main point is, since God has these properties, you can't use the arguments you were using because he has those properties. It's that simple.

Okay, I will gladly do that. I just answered your questions, I didn't know what criteria you wanted my answers to fall under. However, as much as you can state theism explains it, the same can be said for the opposite.

1) Not at all. If that were true, God wouldn't be omnibuses. He would force us to conform to his religion and his religion only. That would make God more like Hitler.

2) That is not true whatsoever. In the Bible, there are 2 types of workers. Those who owe debt, and those who get paid like modern workers. It's that simple. They use the term slavery in the text, but just look at what the Bible describes their duties, their work life, etc. The only bad thing is they could be punished physically, but even then they still had rights. As for women, the Bible says to treat women as equals, and for men to treat their wives as themselves. Moreover, it says to die for your wives to protect them. As for genocide, that is kind of interesting. I can understand why you might think that, but I disagree. Moreover, it's interesting how we got into scrutinizing the Bible now.

3) Just because absolute morality exists, doesn't mean that isn't plausible. What I mean is, people don't want babies to get hurt. Therefore, some people say abortion is bad because it hurts the baby. However, some say it is good because they will have a bad life. Both have the same moral, just how they execute their moral is different. Even people claimed as psychopaths have reasons why they do what they do, that is in correlation to the objective morals we start with. Just what they do with them is up to them.

4) Nahum 2:4 - The chariots shall rage in the streets, they shall justle one against another in the broad ways: they shall seem like torches, they shall run like the lightnings. Talks about there being roads, them being close to each other, they shall be fast (lightnings), and they shall seem like torches (car lights). It did predict cars.

5) "...University of Bristol emeritus professor of bacteriology Alan Linton summarized the situation:
But where is the experimental evidence? None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of 20 to 30 minutes, and populations achieved after 18 hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another, in spite of the fact that populations have been exposed to potent chemical and physical mutagens and that, uniquely, bacteria possess extrachromosomal, transmissible plasmids. Since there is no evidence for species changes between the simplest forms of unicellular life, it is not surprising that there is no evidence for evolution from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells, let alone throughout the whole array of higher multicellular organisms.4 "(3). That states the opposite of your claim. I hope that helps.

(6) No it is opinion. That's like me stating that if a person has a car with only 3 wheels, the car should still function the same.

(7) It would be rape. I know you tried to avoid that, but it is. Forcing someone to do something, is not free will. That"s programming a computer to only have a certain function. Humans were given the ability to choose between right and wrong after Eden. If that is not enough for you, I apologize but I am pretty sure I stated the same thing.

(8) I never denied satan existed.

To be frank, I have eight minutes left to post this, so I hope this is enough for voters. Sorry for my procrastination I am busy training in real life. I appreciate the debate though, and God bless you all.

Resources:
(1) http://www.apologeticspress.org...
(2) http://en.wikipedia.org...
(3) http://www.icr.org...
Seeksecularism

Con

I want to first thank my opponent for participating in this debate. I have thoroughly enjoyed our exchanges and my opponent has gone above and beyond to remain friendly and civil both inside and outside the debate. I want to first address the arguments I presented to solidify my burden of proof within the debate. My first argument was the evidential argument from gratuitous suffering:
1)If God exists, gratuitous suffering does not exist
2)Gratuitous suffering does exist
3)Therefore, God does not exist
I"m still not convinced that the first premise can even be reasonably challenged as it follows from the definition of God. My opponent seems to hint at challenging the premise my saying that because of God"s properties, we could never be in a position to judge whether or not God has sufficient reasons to allow suffering. I still think this is confusion in the definition of gratuitous suffering. If suffering existed that God had no reason for allowing then it would be gratuitous. It follows by definition that God does not allow suffering to occur unless he has a justifying reason for permitting it, and therefore gratuitous suffering would not exist. This becomes an evidential argument in premise 2 when we ask: Do we have sufficient evidence to reasonably conclude that gratuitous suffering exists? I have argued that we do to reasonably conclude this and provided 3 evidences for what seem to be gratuitous sufferings:
1)Child suffering: What purpose could exist for children to suffer from things like poverty and cancer?
2)Natural Disasters: What purpose is there for the arbitrary nature of hurricanes, earthquakes, and tsunamis?
3)Animal Suffering: What purpose is there for animals to suffer just to survive in their natural habitats?
These 3 evidences give us powerful evidence to conclude that at least one instance of gratuitous suffering exits, and therefore God does not exist. My opponent"s best attempt to avoid this premise comes in the form of an appeal to mystery:

"[W]e can"t state those things with God having the properties he has. We can never know better or more than him, or kindness as much as him."
"My main point is, since God has these properties, you can"t use the arguments you were using because he has those properties. It"s that simple."

This is where the Anti-God objection I presented becomes relevant. There are also 2 things worth noting about it:

1)It is not meant to refute my opponents claim, but meant as an undercutting defeater.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

2)Anti-God is not the same as Satan, nor can you infer the existence of Satan from Anti-God. Anti-God has attributes of omnipotence and omniscience. If two such beings were to exist which one was more powerful, or knew more? The existence of two omnipotent and omniscient beings leads to paradoxes and is incoherent. If we are inferring the existence of an omnipotent and omniscient being, then we must figure out if this being is therefore omnibenevolent or omnimenevolent- but both cannot exist.

The purpose of the Anti-God objection is to demonstrate that my opponent"s attempts to save God from the conclusion of my argument can be used equally well to defend Anti-God. Those who believe in God must ask themselves: Is it reasonable to conclude the existence of Anti-God? If yes, then you have an undecidable question as to whether God or Anti-God exists i.e. a paradox. If no, then you can"t appeal to mystery to save God without also saving Anti-God.
For these reasons, I think the truth of both of my premises has been established and it follows logically that God does not exist.

Moving onto my inductive argument, it seems my opponent has taken the route of challenging the facts I"ve presented, so I will dedicate this period to clarifying the facts in hopes of demonstrating that they are better explained on atheism.
1)God does not have to control us in order to for us to have knowledge of his existence any more than I"d have to control you to reasonably know that I exist. I also find it strange that you think God doesn"t impose his religion on us (comparing it to Hitler). It"s not voluntary. What is told to atheists and adherents of other religions if they don"t accept Christ? That they will burn in hell! Adherence to religion is to some extent compulsory and I would argue totalitarian.
2)What do you think is immoral about slavery? That they weren"t paid? It"s immoral because they were denied the same human rights as everyone else- they were property. Woman are denied rights just as well in the bible and considered inferior to men. The whole debate of woman"s suffrage was because women were not thought to be equals to men, and the bible was specifically used in defense of that position because of the statements within it. I find it difficult to rationalize the genocide within the bible.
3)I accept psychopaths have a different understanding of morality. I"m saying that doesn"t make sense if there is an objective standard of morality. I think it makes even less since when you say man is created in the image of God- how do the psychopaths fit into this model?
4)You would only be able to infer cars from that statement in the vaguest sense. This is the exact same tactic used by psychics to appeal to people"s confirmation bias. The bible did not predict cars for the same reason psychics don"t win the lottery, and faith healers don"t work in hospitals

http://en.wikipedia.org...

5)The topic of evolution is not the focus of the debate here. If you would like to debate evolution, let"s set it up, but it is a red herring here. I will only appeal to academic consensus. Those who decent from the theory of evolution are an overwhelming minority.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

6)We have no evidence of minds surviving death and you can even test for yourself that your mind is dependent on your brain. Just squeeze your cerotic artery and you will pass out. Hit your head hard enough and you will have permanent damage to your mind. The extraordinary claim lays with the person who says our minds survive death.
7) If God has free will and can always chose good, then it is logically possible for man to have free will and always chose good. If you deny this then you must deny God"s free will too, or else infer that he is programmed too. Which leads us back to the question: Who designed God?
8)Satan is not Anti-God.
I still think all the of these facts are better understood on the atheistic thesis. I think at best, theism is left as a hypothesis that is Ad Hoc. In combination with the evidential argument from gratuitous suffering, the thesis that God does exist seems untenable. This is conclusion is also consistent with the consensus found in Philosophy with roughly 87% of philosophers being either atheistic or agnostic.

http://io9.com...

Lastly I want to come to my opponent"s argument. He has made the analogy to that of a video game and saying that life has been programmed. He is saying because the instincts of a cat are similar to a program, and programs have programmers, then cat"s instincts have a programmer too i.e. God. Yes we can say that all video game programs have a programmer, but a cat"s instincts only function similar to a video game program. They have been shaped and formed within its genes by the process of natural selection. If you are going to reasonably infer a designer then you must also infer that it was callous, capricious, lazy, wasteful, and inept. With all the junk DNA, genetic mutations, vestigial organs, inefficiencies, and genetic dead ends there is no piece of logic that allows you to move from the laws of physics and biology to the existence of God. At best this inference can lead you to deism, but could also include another form of intelligent life. The problem with this inference is it is an insertion of something unexplained in order to explain something else- which leaves us with nothing explained. My opponent says it"s not a God of the Gaps move, but then he does it:

"The whole notion that God is used as a filler is incorrect. I am not just saying God did it, and there is no explanation for it. There is an explanation, God did a process of steps to create everything. How? I do not know. We can find out eventually, but just because we know how a system works, does not mean God didn't create it."

Bertrand Russell famously demonstrated why this doesn"t work. I cannot disprove the existence of a celestial teapot orbiting Venus, but my inability to disprove this teapot is not a reason for believing in its existence. It is not an assumption that God must be designed; it"s an application of the principle of sufficient reasoning. If God is to be necessary and not contingent then that must be established. If God can be a necessary, then why can"t the universe? There"s another problem when trying to ascribe the laws of nature to God. The laws of nature are invented by humans; they only describe how nature actually functions. It is the philosophical distinction between a prescriptive law and a descriptive law. The universe is under no obligation to operate in accordance with our laws as they only describe it. The universe will operate in accordance with its own nature. Calling this nature God was Spinoza"s move. But again this leaves you at pantheism, not God.
In closing I want to thank my opponent again as I have thoroughly enjoyed our debate. I think that my burden of proof was sufficiently met in both my arguments while my opponent"s arguments left us at deism at best. Therefore it is reasonable to conclude that God does not exist.
Debate Round No. 4
42 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Tweka 2 years ago
Tweka
In DDO
Who had better conduct: shall be given to the one who has organized their arguments and resources
Posted by Sagey 2 years ago
Sagey
Changes in species of Fruit Fly does not mean the new species are not still Fruit Flies, since just the inability of one group of fruit flies to breed with the original, depicts a new species.

Eventually as mutations and chromosome alterations such as duplication occur, their physical appearance (phenotype) may be radically different, or they may stay much the same, there is no planning nor design behind evolutionary changes, they are mostly random.

Thus nobody can predict what the new species may be like, that is all purely chance.
Though if the chance outcome cannot be sustained in that environment (natural selection) that species will become extinct.
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
Christian_Debater
Vote Bomb. Report him. I just finished doing it =/.
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
Christian_Debater
First of all, Catholicism is not Christianity. I'd look into that if you would take the time.

Second of all, the four corneres are North, South, East, and West. Come on now, you are stretching it. Moreover, what you claim is your interpretation I believe of Genesis? Genesis 1 is very complicated, to assume it fits your position is very interesting. The reason I call it interesting is that many people claim what Genesis means. The problem is, Genesis 1 has so much information in it that it is almost impossible without tons of evidence to state your position is correct.

No they do not hate those people. The Bible teaches to love everyone. Without love everything you do is useless in the Bible.

Also Sagey, you keep stating a lot. Can you prove it at least?

Lastly, why do you follow me on my debates? Come on now.
Posted by Sagey 2 years ago
Sagey
Christians burnt Bruno ( a devout Christian) at the stake for simply saying that the Bible was wrong.
Shows how stupid, bigoted and murderous Christianity is.
Catholicism has murdered such people of differing opinion for centuries.
Hardly a humanistic, turn the other cheek religion.
Posted by Sagey 2 years ago
Sagey
Oh, yes the Bible does state the Earth is Flat, circular with pillars supporting it.
It also has corners, so essentially, if you take the Bible literally, Earth is a circular square.
It also says that Heaven is on top of a solid (firmament) dome over the Earth and all the stars are glued to the underside of this dome (probably using silly putty) and God sits on top layer of this dual layer dome (filled with water) on a throne.
Essentially the Bible describes earth as being like a Snow Globe, with both the Square Disk like Earth and the Dome supported by Pillars with Heaven above the outer dome.
With the Earth stationary while the sun and moon moved around this globe.

No wonder strong believers in the Bible being inerrant hated Bruno, Copernicus and Galileo.

Because between those great thinkers, they demonstrated that the Bible is indeed Errant!
Since then, thousands of more errors have become evident.
Essentially, most of the Bible is Errant, not just Genesis.
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
Christian_Debater
30 seconds left and I posted it. I would've hoped for more time but thats my own fault. Thanks again for the debate Seeksecularism - also if you live in Toronto, come spar.
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
Christian_Debater
The Flood is cited in many different cultures around the world.

The Bible never states the earth is flat.
Posted by Sagey 2 years ago
Sagey
The Bible is a Dead End.
In many ways.
All the knowledge that is contained in the Bible was common knowledge at the time it was written.
There is nothing new to offer humanity.
Essentially Bible knowledge stopped 2000 years ago and has not been upgraded.
The Earth is Not Flat, Under a Star Studded Dome.
Galileo destroyed the Bibles Knowledge.
Even Leonardo destroyed Genesis, when he noted that the Flood is fiction.
There is not a thing that humans have not known for over 2000 years within the Bible.
It died soon after Jesus died as far as useful knowledge goes.
Posted by Christian_Debater 2 years ago
Christian_Debater
I told you I can't watch videos a while ago. Just go and cite some information from the Bible.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Saska 2 years ago
Saska
Christian_DebaterSeeksecularismTied
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Great job by both debaters. Con had more convincing arguments, backed by sources, while Pro just offered opinions and appeals to mystery. Claiming 'there are explanations, I just don't know them' is a fairly weak argument. Had the definition of God not included the three O's, this debate would have been a draw, but Con is more convincing in his argument that an Omniscient, Omnipotent, Omnibenevolent God cannot exist.
Vote Placed by FuzzyCatPotato 2 years ago
FuzzyCatPotato
Christian_DebaterSeeksecularismTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Good debate. Con won Problem of Evil as justified and defeated Argument from Design/Beauty/Etc. as an argument from incredulity, effectively refuting Pro's sole reason to vote Pro.
Vote Placed by Sagey 2 years ago
Sagey
Christian_DebaterSeeksecularismTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con's argument was solid. Pro could do nothing more than throw assertions at them which were without any evidence. Con's sources were rational and educational while Pro's sources only demonstrated a complete misconception of Evolution which amounted to nonsense sources. Such as citing Richard GoldschmidtRichard Goldschmidt who would have had to change his mind if he lived nowadays as there is a thousand plus times more knowledge about genetics than existed in his relatively Ancient times.