The Instigator
stubs
Pro (for)
Losing
4 Points
The Contender
GMDebater
Con (against)
Winning
9 Points

Does God Exist?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/20/2011 Category: Religion
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,325 times Debate No: 17145
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (2)

 

stubs

Pro

There is no good reason to believe God does not exist. There are good reasons to believe God does exist. Argument 1. An atheist either has to believe the universe is infinite or that something came from nothing. (I have arguments for both depending on what is chosen.) 2. The fine tuning of the earth for life is so improbable the evidence points to an intelligent designer. There will be more points to follow for my opponent.
GMDebater

Con

I thank my opponent for debating. I'm not sure if this round is just for acceptance or what. I feel we need to set a few things straight

1. My opponent has the BOP. The entire debate rests on him not being refuted and looking like an idiot.
2. We need to have definitions.

God: The English name given to a singular being in theistic and deistic religions (and other belief systems) who is either the sole diety in monotheism, or single deity in polytheism. (1)

Monotheism: The belief that there is one God (2)

Polytheism: The belief that there is more than one God (3)

Remember that this debate is about the existance of God. This does not clarify a singular or particular God...therefore, we will not be explaining contradictions in any holy text.

In addition, this debate is not about the origin of the universe or evolution. Evolution does not mean that God does NOT exist.

Opening Questions

I like to ask my opponent questions in the opening round
1) Is God infinite
2) If not, who created God?

Refutations

My opponent claims that an Atheist has to believe that the universe is infinite or that something came from nothing. We need to know what nothing is. Nothing must be an infinite void (4)

Furthermore, my opponent is obviously ignorant to the Big Bang Theory. I would like my opponent to do research on the Big Bang Theory. The universe did not come from "nothing." I request my opponent to look up information about the Big Bang Theory. (5)
Next my opponent uses the Fine Tuning argument. In case you are not familiar with the fine tuning argument, it goes like this.

Next my opponent uses the fine tuning argument. He asserts that "life is so improbable that the evidence points to an intelligent designer." I'd love to see more points to follow. As far as we know, earth is the only planet that has life. This does not mean that it is.

If the universe IS so fine tuned for life, then why aren't there more planets with life?

In all honesty, I found it somewhat hard to follow your points. Could you make it clearer? Also, if I mised something, let me know!

Source:
1. http://en.wikipedia.org...;
2. http://en.wikipedia.org...;
3. http://en.wikipedia.org...;
4. http://www.thekeyboard.org.uk...;
5. http://www.talkorigins.org...;
Debate Round No. 1
stubs

Pro

I am debating from the Christian perspective of monotheism. Also, some atheist believe that they make no claims therefore they need not defend anything. That is generally not accepted anymore because claiming there is no God is a singular negative and of course there can be evidence given against them.

You said that this debate is not about the origin of the universe. Not entirely but the origin of the universe is directly related to the existence of God. I do not believe in macro-evolution but even if it were to be true I am not making the argument that God would then not exist.

God is infinite. And the reason God can be infinite, and not lead to contradictions, while an infinite universe will lead to contradictions is because God is changeless. Infinity is not an actuall thing it is just an idea. If the universe is infinite how many events occurred before the big bang? Mathematically you will get self contradictory answers because you would have to claim there was an infinite amount of events before the big bang. If the universe is not eternal than something had to appear from nothing. I do not care about how you are defining "nothing." If the universe is not eternal, from an atheist stand point, they must conclude that something came from nothing.

The Big Bang Theory does not try to explain anything that happened before the Big Bang itself. I am aware of that. The Big Bang Theory only tries to explain what happened after the Big Bang. Which is exactly my point, I am unaware of a theory more probable than that of an intelligent designer on the creation of the universe.

As far as the fine tuning argument I will give you some more examples. Stephen Hawking said that if the rate of the universe's expansion one second after the big bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have collapsed into a fireball.

Also, British physicist P.C.W. Davies has concluded that the odds against the initial conditions being suitable for the formation of stars, which are necessary for planets and thus life, is a one followed by at lease a thousand billion billion zeros.

Davies also said that if the strength of gravity were changed by only one part in 10^100 life could never have developed. For comparison there is only 10^80 atoms in the entire known universe.

These probabilities are also in tune with eachother, meaning it is improbability multiplied by improbability multiplied by improbability until they are unimaginably small numbers.

"If the universe is so fine tuned for life, then why aren't there more planets with life?"
--> There aren't more planets with life because based on the statistical data I provided, just one planet with life is, in my opinion, strong evidence for God.

If you remember in my opening I said that there was no good evidence against God. I do not believe you gave any evidence against God in your first argument. I also said that there was good evidence for God. I believe I provided you with clear, strong evidence for God.

Thank you for debating with me. Your knowledge is greatly appreciated.
GMDebater

Con

I again wish to thank my opponent for this debate.

"God is infinite. And the reason God can be infinite, and not lead to contradictions, while an infinite universe will lead to contradictions is because God is changeless. Infinity is not an actuall thing it is just an idea. If the universe is infinite how many events occurred before the big bang? Mathematically you will get self contradictory answers because you would have to claim there was an infinite amount of events before the big bang. If the universe is not eternal than something had to appear from nothing. I do not care about how you are defining "nothing." If the universe is not eternal, from an atheist stand point, they must conclude that something came from nothing."

I offer this syllogism
1) If an actual infinity cannot exist, an infinite god cannot exist
2) An actual infinity cannot exist;
3) Therefore, an infinite God cannot exist.

Defense of p1
Hypothesis

Defense of p2
Mathematically and scientifically, an actual infinity cannot possibly exist

Conclusion
Law of syllogism

I also wish to ask my opponent what happened before God created the universe? we don't know and cannot know what happened before the Big Bang. Personally, I believe that it could be possible for an endless cycle of bangs, crunches and bangs...however, that is mere speculation.

"The Big Bang Theory does not try to explain anything that happened before the Big Bang itself. I am aware of that. The Big Bang Theory only tries to explain what happened after the Big Bang. Which is exactly my point, I am unaware of a theory more probable than that of an intelligent designer on the creation of the universe."

True. Creation also does not try to explain what happened before creation!

As for the fine tuning argument, what if life could have still evolved? It wouldn't be as we know it, but couldn't it have arisen ton other life forms?

Arguments AGAINST God

My opponent wishes for me to add good reasons against god. Here they are directly from the website I made.

On this page, I have listed some of the arguments I have used that are against the existence of God. This page specifically deals with the Abrahamic God (Allah, YHWH, and Jesus)

Argument 1: The lack of imperial evidence

The argument goes as followed:

There has not been any reliable, testable evidence to support the existence of the Abrahamic God. If God interacts with our universe in any meaningful way, then the effects of his interaction must be detectable and measurable; however, there is no detectable and measurable evidence.

It is not rational to believe that the Abrahamic gods exist because there is no evidence, and if the religions are true, then God would interact with his universe. He does not, therefore, he cannot exist.

There is such a thing as the scientific method. The scientific method was developed in order to prevent the assertions of unproven or improvable theories.
First, a hypothesis is formulated as an explanation of a particular phenomenon. The hypothesis is based on observation or experimentation, then that hypothesis must be tested repeatedly to provide firm evidence for its truth.

Unless repeatable, empirical evidence can be presented for a claim such as "God Exists", then it will always remain an unproven hypothesis--this is a hypothesis which belief in it is unwarranted.

Argument 2: Problem of Evil

The argument states the following:

The Abrahamic God is, by definition, all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-loving
There is avoidable suffering in the word.
Therefore, that leaves us with three possibilities:
God is not able to stop the suffering; therefore, he is not all-powerful.
If he does not want to stop it, then he is not all-loving;
If he does not even know about it, then he is not all-knowing;
If God can stop it, knows about it, and refuses to stop it; then he is the cause of evil.
The argument has been stated before as one of my all-time favorite quotes:

"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?"



Argument 3: Problem of Religious Diversity

The argument states the following:


The competing religions are mutually exclusive, and thus they cannot all be true. Since there are a multitude of competing religions, and a multitude of equally credible, yet contrary testimonies and scriptures; the probability that any given religion is true is extraordinarily low. Consequently, it has a high probable that all religions are false.

Since it is obviously inconceivable that all religions can be right, the most reasonable conclusion is that they are all wrong.
- Christopher Hitchens (1982)


Argument 4: Problem of God's silence

The Argument states the following:

If God wants humans to believe in him and to follow his will, then he would deliver his message directly, and not leave it up to fallible, sinful humans to do so. There is an endless plethora of confused and contradictory messages (Bible, Torah, and Koran).

If God is, in fact, a supremely powerful being who wants us to set things right and wants to prevent us from getting things more wrong, then he should have made his views eminently clear to us all.� If he has not given the strong evidence required by his desire to have us believe in him, then he clearly does not exist.

If God wants something from me, he would tell me. He wouldn't leave someone else to do this, as if an infinite being were short on time. And he would certainly not leave fallible, sinful humans to deliver an endless plethora of confused and contradictory messages.
- Robert Carrier (2006)


Back to you!
Debate Round No. 2
stubs

Pro

Infinity, when applied to God is not a quantitative thing, rather it is qualitative. When I talk about an actual infinite I'm talking about a set that has an infinite number of definite indiscrete finite particulars. That does not apply to God because infinity when applied to God is a qualitative thing. It's saying God all powerful, all knows, eternal, all good, and things like that. Infinite is just what we generalize all those terms to be under. So I do not think that my argument against an infinite number of anything is related to my claim that God is infinite.
Before the creation The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit, were all together. They are changeless, so again as I stated early this leads to no contridictions.
You talked about God needing to interact with the universe in a meaningful way. That's exactly where Jesus comes in, and threw the resurrection. If you want my evidence for the reliability of the gospels I can do that later or in another debate sometime. Your first argument is then invalid because God did do exactly what you said He did not.
It seems like for scientific evidence you want me to write out a repeatable experiment, where every time I will end up with God in a test tube?
Suffering
All suffering comes from sin and evil. You might say why did God create sin and evil? Well, God didn't create sin, it came into the world when He gave humans free choice and they disobeyed Him. You might ask why didn't God just create humans to always choose good? Well think about if you pushed a button on a Barbie and every time it said, "I love you" How meaningful is that I love you? God did create potential for evil but it only came into being when we rejected God's ways.
You may then ask didn't God know about the potential consequences of free choice? Well think about any relationship you have had. Even if its just a friendship isn't there a chance that your friend is going to hurt you or walk away completely? However, you still make friendships knowing there is that potential.
Think about the famous story of the bear, the hunter, and God. Your walking in the woods and a bear has his leg stuck in a trap. You go to help the bear but every time you get close he things you are going to hurt him so he fights you. Then you have to shoot him with a tranquilizer gun. Now he really thinks you are out to hurt him. Then to get his leg out of the trap you have to push it in deeper to release the tension on the spring. If the bear was even conscious he would ask all the more, "Why are you making me suffer." Now, how can you be sure it is not like that with God?
The most extreme suffering was Jesus dyeing on the cross and, from a Christian perspective we see the good that came out of that.
You might say well why do evil people hurt other and get away with it. Well the fact is the Bible says they won't get away. While a skeptic would most likely not accept that they would say, "Well if God could stop suffering why doesn't he do it right now." I would tell them they are. In 2 Peter 3:9 it says, "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." He is delaying everything because of his love for us.
Religious Diversity
I would never state that all religions are true. As you pointed out they say different things. However the one thing I disagree on is equal credibility. That is simply just a statement out of ignorance. As I said earlier if you want me to debate about historical reliability of the Bible I will do that.
Problem of God's Silence
I believe God did clearly give us his message. You said why would God leave it to sinful humans to write down his views. I would agree that the people who wrote the Bible were sinful, but I think you are thinking under the false pretense that only people who don't sin can write something that is true. If that is the case than all writing in history would be false.
Conclusion
I said I would defend two arguments: That there is no good reason to believe God does not exist, and there is good reason to believe God does exist. You brought up arguments but they were either factually wrong, easily refuted or based on false pretences. You also did not refute my statement that God creating the universe was the most probable way the universe was created, and you did not have any answer for the fine tuning of the universe.
GMDebater

Con

Infinity, when applied to God is not a quantitative thing, rather it is qualitative. When I talk about an actual infinite I'm talking about a set that has an infinite number of definite indiscrete finite particulars. That does not apply to God because infinity when applied to God is a qualitative thing. It's saying God all powerful, all knows, eternal, all good, and things like that. Infinite is just what we generalize all those terms to be under. So I do not think that my argument against an infinite number of anything is related to my claim that God is infinite.

My opponent has no problem believing that God can be infinite and yet has a problem believing that matter can be infinite. I ask my opponent, why can’t the same arguments be used for matter and energy?


Before the creation The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit, were all together. They are changeless, so again as I stated early this leads to no contridictions.

My opponent is using the Christian God. This debate is not over if the Christian God exists, but rather if God exists. This debate does not specifically say which God. You need to define your resolution better.


You talked about God needing to interact with the universe in a meaningful way. That's exactly where Jesus comes in, and threw the resurrection. If you want my evidence for the reliability of the gospels I can do that later or in another debate sometime. Your first argument is then invalid because God did do exactly what you said He did not.
It seems like for scientific evidence you want me to write out a repeatable experiment, where every time I will end up with God in a test tube?

But why doesn’t he interact with us the same way now? Furthermore, my opponent is specifically stating God X when the resolution clearly does not define which God.


Suffering
All suffering comes from sin and evil. You might say why did God create sin and evil? Well, God didn't create sin, it came into the world when He gave humans free choice and they disobeyed Him. You might ask why didn't God just create humans to always choose good? Well think about if you pushed a button on a Barbie and every time it said, "I love you" How meaningful is that I love you? God did create potential for evil but it only came into being when we rejected God's ways.

My opponent is using the Free-Will argument. However, God himself gave us that free-will. I ask my opponent why God can’t just give us two good options instead of a good and bad choice.

I would also point out that if God can make a rule that says only people with Free-Will can be happy, then he can easily make a rule that robots can be happy.


You may then ask didn't God know about the potential consequences of free choice? Well think about any relationship you have had. Even if its just a friendship isn't there a chance that your friend is going to hurt you or walk away completely? However, you still make friendships knowing there is that potential.

My opponent in this case is correct. God X may have known about the consequence, but the free-will argument is rebutted above.


Think about the famous story of the bear, the hunter, and God. Your walking in the woods and a bear has his leg stuck in a trap. You go to help the bear but every time you get close he things you are going to hurt him so he fights you. Then you have to shoot him with a tranquilizer gun. Now he really thinks you are out to hurt him. Then to get his leg out of the trap you have to push it in deeper to release the tension on the spring. If the bear was even conscious he would ask all the more, "Why are you making me suffer." Now, how can you be sure it is not like that with God?

My opponent is using a straw-man argument. If God is all-powerful, does he really have to make us suffer?


The most extreme suffering was Jesus dyeing on the cross and, from a Christian perspective we see the good that came out of that.

According to the Biblical belief, it was good. However, if we look at it from a different angle, we see that it was not good. Why does God need blood to forgive sins if he is all powerful? Since my opponent is using the Christian God, I will point out that there are verses that have forgiveness without blood.


You might say well why do evil people hurt other and get away with it. Well the fact is the Bible says they won't get away. While a skeptic would most likely not accept that they would say, "Well if God could stop suffering why doesn't he do it right now." I would tell them they are. In 2 Peter 3:9 it says, "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." He is delaying everything because of his love for us.

So he is delaying justice for his love? Furthermore, the Bible contains major contradictions! I’ll point that out later.


Religious Diversity
I would never state that all religions are true. As you pointed out they say different things. However the one thing I disagree on is equal credibility. That is simply just a statement out of ignorance. As I said earlier if you want me to debate about historical reliability of the Bible I will do that.

This is not a debate on the Biblical reliability. Anyway, all religions are true, but which one is most true? The Bible, Koran and Torah contradict each other! All religions contradict each other on one aspect or another.


Problem of God's Silence
I believe God did clearly give us his message. You said why would God leave it to sinful humans to write down his views. I would agree that the people who wrote the Bible were sinful, but I think you are thinking under the false pretense that only people who don't sin can write something that is true. If that is the case than all writing in history would be false.

Huh? I do not understand this argument.


Conclusion
I said I would defend two arguments: That there is no good reason to believe God does not exist, and there is good reason to believe God does exist. You brought up arguments but they were either factually wrong, easily refuted or based on false pretences. You also did not refute my statement that God creating the universe was the most probable way the universe was created, and you did not have any answer for the fine tuning of the universe.

I did rebut your arguments. You may want to re-read my argument. I posted my rebuttals before the argument.

In addition, it seems my opponent has used tons of straw man and has actually attempted to re-change the resolution from God exists to the Christian God exists.

The Bible contradicts itself, more coming in the next round

Debate Round No. 3
stubs

Pro

Yes, I am in fact talking about the Christian God. I apologize for not specifying in the first round; however I already did in the previous round. I believe you should be thanking me though because won't it be much easier to disprove one belief rather than many?

Matter and energy are much different than God. So why would the same rules apply to them?
Jesus is God so He did in fact interact with us.

The argument for 2 good choices instead of one good and one bad is almost silly. God could have given us 4 million good choices and the problem would still remain that we are only choosing good because that's the only option He gave us. As for your arguments about the robots being happy, they would still only be happy because God made that the only option. I think I may have misunderstood your point because most of your arguments seem much more intelligent than that one.

You asked if God has to make us suffer. I would say God is not making us suffer. We sinned and that is why we suffer.
Jesus needed to die on the cross because God is a just God. If no one payed the penalty for sins than God would be being unfair and unjust. You said there are verses about forgiveness without blood. I would agree with that, but I do not see how that is relevant to Jesus dying on the cross.

You asked if God is delaying justice for His love. Well you tell me what the better option is in your opinion from these two choices: suffering for a few short years on earth; or suffering in Hell for eternity?
You said that all religions are true. I would disagree. Obviously the Qur'an and Bible are going to contradict each other because Christians and Muslims have very different beliefs.

I will try to rephrase what you did not understand:
You asked why God would have sinful humans write down what He wants for Him. I am not arguing that the people who physically wrote the Bible were not sinful. I am arguing that sinful people can write true things.
I believe this is my last time responding to you and I am looking forward to seeing your next arguments, however, I am curious as to why you are waiting until the last round to bring forth any convincing arguments.

As I said in the beginning, I do not think there is any good reason to believe God does not exist. Up until this point you have not given me any convincing evidence that God does not exist. Also all of the reasons I gave for the existence of God, you have tried to refute, but I have yet to see one be successful.
Thank you for the debate and I will gladly talk with you anytime.
GMDebater

Con

Well, it is the last round and I thank my opponent for such a great debate!

Yes, I am in fact talking about the Christian God. I apologize for not specifying in the first round; however I already did in the previous round. I believe you should be thanking me though because won't it be much easier to disprove one belief rather than many?

True. I do thank you for that. However, next time make your resolution clearer.

Matter and energy are much different than God. So why would the same rules apply to them?
Jesus is God so He did in fact interact with us.

Why can't it? You can't even prove God exists!


The argument for 2 good choices instead of one good and one bad is almost silly. God could have given us 4 million good choices and the problem would still remain that we are only choosing good because that's the only option He gave us. As for your arguments about the robots being happy, they would still only be happy because God made that the only option. I think I may have misunderstood your point because most of your arguments seem much more intelligent than that one.

I agree. However, I must ask you this question, "If we are all following 'God's plan', can we really bhe morally responsible for something we have done?

You asked if God has to make us suffer. I would say God is not making us suffer. We sinned and that is why we suffer.
Jesus needed to die on the cross because God is a just God. If no one payed the penalty for sins than God would be being unfair and unjust. You said there are verses about forgiveness without blood. I would agree with that, but I do not see how that is relevant to Jesus dying on the cross.

My opponent assirts that God would be unjust if he allowed sin to go unpunished. However, my opponent forgets that he is equally unjust by letting the WRONG PERSON pay for the crime. Allow me to explain. Let's say that there was a rapist and killer that has admited to his crime. The judge would be unjust to allow his son to pay for it. Right? Then why is God different?

You asked if God is delaying justice for His love. Well you tell me what the better option is in your opinion from these two choices: suffering for a few short years on earth; or suffering in Hell for eternity?
You said that all religions are true. I would disagree. Obviously the Qur'an and Bible are going to contradict each other because Christians and Muslims have very different beliefs.

I would say sufferign on earth for a few short years. I did not say taht all religions are true. YOU said that.

I will try to rephrase what you did not understand:
You asked why God would have sinful humans write down what He wants for Him. I am not arguing that the people who physically wrote the Bible were not sinful. I am arguing that sinful people can write true things.
I believe this is my last time responding to you and I am looking forward to seeing your next arguments, however, I am curious as to why you are waiting until the last round to bring forth any convincing arguments.

"Sinful people can write true things." duh. I can obviously write "The sky is blue" and that is a true stattement. I have not waited till the last round. I have used many arguments such as the argument from God's silence, multiple revelations etc.

As I said in the beginning, I do not think there is any good reason to believe God does not exist. Up until this point you have not given me any convincing evidence that God does not exist. Also all of the reasons I gave for the existence of God, you have tried to refute, but I have yet to see one be successful.
Thank you for the debate and I will gladly talk with you anytime.

Thank you for this debate. However, you changed the resolution again. If you want the resolution to be "There are no arguments against God's existance..." then you should have made it that resolution. I do not need to refute any arguments you bring up for God if that is the resolution.

Thank you for this debate.

Conclusion

My opponent had a no-good resolution, tried to change it and has not yet refuted any of my arguments succesfully.

Please vote con!
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by TheNerd 5 years ago
TheNerd
stubsGMDebaterTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
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Total points awarded:15 
Reasons for voting decision: Calling someone an "idiot" is disrespectful to people with disabilities and is also unnecessary. Example involving bear made God look evil and/or incompetent, but did nothing further the question of existence.
Vote Placed by LeoL 5 years ago
LeoL
stubsGMDebaterTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
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Total points awarded:34 
Reasons for voting decision: Con gets conduct point because Pro changed the resolution a few times. Unfortunately because of this, the debate was going nowhere because they didn't seem like they knew how to refute eachothers arguments according to the resolution.