Does God Exist?
Debate Rounds (1)
The Kalam Cosmological Argument: The cosmological argument goes as follows: whatever begins to exist has a cause, the universe began to exist, therefore, the universe had a cause, the obvious cause is God. Is the first premise true? Logic tells us that it is impossible for something to come into being uncaused. Have you ever seen a horse come into being uncaused? No. Why? Because things don"t come into being uncaused. Believing something can come into existence uncaused is worse than believing in magic. Thus, the first premise is true. Is the second premise true? Did the universe begin to exist? Atheists have said for a long time that the universe is just eternal, and uncaused. But there are good scientific reasons to think that the universe began to exist. For example, the universe is expanding. This means that something had to start the expansion. The universe must have come into existence from a point. This means that the universe had a beginning. The second law of thermodynamics tells us that the universe is running out of usable energy. If the universe had been here forever, it would have run out of energy by now. This follows that the universe had a cause. Let"s examine what that cause was. Since the universe can"t bring itself into existence, the cause must be outside of time and space. The cause must be: timeless, space less, immaterial, and powerful. Something like God.
A fine tuned universe: Scientists have been shocked by the fact that the conditions of the universe have been finely tuned for life to exist. To give an example of this, if the rate of expansion of the big bang was changed by as little as 1 and 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 life wouldn't"t exist. If the atomic weak force was changed by 2% life wouldn't"t exist. This fine tuning can only be due to either physical necessity, chance, or design. Now, it can"t be due to physical necessity, because the physical constants are independent of the laws of nature. Now, could it be due to chance? The problem with this alternative is that the odds of the fine tuning occurring by chance is so incomprehensibly great that they can"t be reasonably faced. It is more likely that the stars will arrange themselves tonight to spell your name, then for the fine tuning to have occurred by chance. Thus, this gives us a designer of the universe.
Biological Complexity: When we look at our biochemistry, our cells, our organs. It is clear it is incredibly complex. While I accept evolution to be the leading explanation for biological diversity, I am quite skeptical about the mechanisms which drive evolution. To say that the diversity of life occurred by natural selection operating on random mutations is what I have a problem with. I believe that the complexity of our systems is more than enough evidence for a creator. There are billions of cells in the human body, which forms tissues, which forms mussels, and they all work together almost perfectly well. I have a hard time to believe that this occurred by selection acting on mutations.
The Moral Argument: If God does not exist, then objective moral values do not exist. If God does exist, then objective moral values do exist. When I say objective moral values, I mean morals that are binding and true whether you believe in them or not. Picture a house burning, and there are two children in that house. What would you do? You would help them. So who instilled that in you. Some atheists have responded to this by saying that objective moral values are just illusions ingrained in us by evolution. The problem with this is that evolution has nothing to do with morals. Evolution is all about survival, and reproduction. So this follows that since objective moral values exist, God must exist.
The resurrection of Jesus: If Jesus really did rise from the dead, we would have a supernatural occurrence, therefore, evidence for the existence of God. Now, you might say that the resurrection is just something you believe in, by faith. But there are some fact which I believe to be best explained by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Fact number one, Jesus" tomb was discovered empty by a group of his women followers. Now, attempts by atheists to explain this fact have included the following: someone stole the body, or they went to the wrong tomb. The Jews and Romans had no motives to steal the body. Jews do not believe in a savior. So why would they steal Jesus" body to prove something they don"t believe in? Most Romans were pagans, so they also did not believe in Christian salvation. The group of women who went to the tomb watched Jesus be put into the tomb, so they knew exactly where it was. It seems unlikely that they would forget after just three days. Another fact is that women had no rights back then. If someone wanted to make a story up like this, they would have put it so that a man (such as John, or Paul) found the body. Another fact is that people saw images of Jesus after his crucifixion. Not just Jews and Pagans, but also enemies of Christ. Why would an enemy of Christ tell stories of how they saw images of Jesus if they didn"t believe he was divine? Thus, this follows that Jesus rose from the dead, and Christianity is true.
The problem with the kalam cosmological argument is that it is a stab in the dark and follows the "God of the gaps" argument where believers say that science cannot fully explain the origin of the universe therefore God must be the cause. This is a silly argument and actually quite illogical. There is no solid evidence for the existence or non-existence of God, a case can only be made for the likelihood of such existence or non-existence. Therefore you cannot say that the non-existence of God is impossible as the kalam cosmological argument itself is not based on evidence at all. Not only is the non-existence of God IMPOSSIBLE, I think it is very likely that God doesn't exist. As you have made it unclear whether you are talking about a deistic God or a theistic God I will try to discuss both.
Argument against the existence of a deistic God: (Definition of deism-The belief, based solely on reason, in a God who created the universe and then abandoned it, assuming no control over life, exerting no influence on natural phenomena, and giving no supernatural revelation.)
The consistent replacement of supernatural explanations of the world with natural ones.
When you look at the history of what we know about the world, you see a noticeable pattern. Natural explanations of things have been replacing supernatural explanations of them. Why the Sun rises and sets. Where thunder and lightning come from. Why people get sick. Why people look like their parents. How the complexity of life came into being, to name but a few. All these things were once explained by religion but as we understood the world better, and learned to observe it more carefully, the explanations based on religion were replaced by ones based on scientific fact.
There is a good quote that "Religion is an ever-receding pocket of scientific ignorance " and this is certainly the case. Over the centuries more and more faith based "explanations" have been discounted and disproven. Given that this is true, what are the chances that any given phenomenon for which we currently don't have a thorough explanation for, such as the origin of the universe will be best explained by the supernatural? Taking this consistent pattern into account, the chances of this are extremely slim.
Argument against the existence of a theistic God: (Definition of theism- the belief in one God as the creator and ruler of the universe, without rejection of revelation. E.g The God that religions teach to exist)
(The argument against the existence of a deistic God also of course applies here as well).
The thousands of God's that have been believed in since the dawn of man.
Through the thousands of different cultural and belief systems that have existed over the years thousands of God's have been worshiped and believed in. What makes the modern ideology of God so special against the others? If you believe in God, you have chosen to reject Allah, Buddha, Zeus , Thor and all of the thousands of other gods that people worship or have worshiped. What's interesting is the fact the prime reason a person believes in a God is through their upbringing. They reject everyone Else's God and people reject their God, which means that people who believe in a God are atheist to 99.99% of all other God's out there. In a nutshell, thousands of God's have existed with man and there are two possibilities.
1. That one exists.
2. That none exist.
Which one do you think is more likely given the thousands of Gods in question here?
Lack of interference
This point is pretty straightforward. Through all the pain and hardship that has existed since the dawn of man (and currently exists) and the mass amount of catastrophic events that has destroyed so many lives, where has God been hiding? If he is said to have ultimate power then why does he let such horrific things happen? And more importantly why does he let it happen when people reach out to him for rescue. Either God is just not nice or he is non-existent as lack of interference is a complete contradiction of religious stories. Take the bible for example. It's amazing how there are so many stories in the bible (which is the alleged word of God might I add) about God's miracles, intervention, guidance etc. and we are talking about the directness of God in these stories here, not just God working through people which is a common argument today. Yet where is all this today? Why did God decide to publicly intervene for a brief time period many years ago and then just seem to vanish? Again it is either that God did in fact only want to intervene for a short period of time and then stop or that these superstitious stories are just superstitious stories. Which is the likelier of the two? That the laws of physics, time and space are altered for a period of time or that these claims are just stories? Not to mention the fact that there isn't a shred of evidence for them.
In relation to your points on Biological Complexity you say that "the complexity of our systems is more than enough evidence for a creator".
This is in no way evidence for a creator and if anything, it actually enhances the theory of evolution as it shows that organism systems became more and more complex as life went on, which is the essence of evolution really. Lets be realistic here.
You also say "there are billions of cells in the human body, which forms tissues, which forms mussels, and they all work together almost perfectly well. I have a hard time to believe that this occurred by selection acting on mutations."
Of course life didn't start out as being billion cell bodies, it started out as single cell bacteria and then slowly evolved to create oxygen breathing life forms and so on. Thus the cycle of evolution began (http://learn.genetics.utah.edu...)
But you may say how was that single cell organism created? Well that is one of the biggest mysteries of the universe however why should everyone just fill it with the idea of God because there isn't a solid alternative answer? Science seeks to uncover the mystery and doesn't say that because there isn't an answer yet then it must be God. However because there is no evidence either way we are also dealing with a claim for likeliness here and this video actually makes great points on the idea that it is possible to make something from nothing. ()
"If God does not exist, then objective moral values do not exist. If God does exist, then objective moral values do exist."
The age old question is where do morals come from. As I am running low on space please read this article on how the argument is made that morality stems from the brain rather than being something that is injected into us by a creator.
"The problem is that evolution has nothing to do with morals. Evolution is all about survival, and reproduction. So this follows that since objective moral values exist, God must exist."
Evolution indeed has something to do with morals. Morals stem from emotion, which stems from the brain, which has evolved based on experience. For example, you see a kid drowning in a pool. The obviously moral thing to do is try to save the kid but the want to save the kid comes from a powerful emotion of panic, fear, anxiety etc. These have evolved over time. Do you think if a Neanderthal man saw a kid drowning in a river they would feel exactly what we feel today? No of course not because the brain has evolved.
To respond to your points on the resurrection, you can not say that this is true just because it says it in the Bible. The Bible is essentially myths and legends. It is no evidence for God or Jesus or all the miracles in which it claims. Just stories.
Jesus rose from the dead and Christianity is true in the same way that Gandalf rose from the dead and Middle-Earth is true.
No votes have been placed for this debate.
You are not eligible to vote on this debate
This debate has been configured to only allow voters who meet the requirements set by the debaters. This debate either has an Elo score requirement or is to be voted on by a select panel of judges.