The Instigator
C_e_e
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points
The Contender
Jerry947
Pro (for)
Winning
6 Points

Does God exist?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Jerry947
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/28/2016 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 841 times Debate No: 94186
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (29)
Votes (4)

 

C_e_e

Con

I want to thank my opponent for agreeing to this debate. This is a debate about whether God exists, with emphasis on personal, contributing, reasons for our belief and nonbelief.

This round, Round 1, is for definitions and acceptance of the debate. Round 2 is designated for initial arguments. Round 3 is for rebuttals. Round 4 is for further rebuttals and clarifications.

Definitions:
God - the creator of the universe, the earth particularly, and the earth"s inhabitants.
Exist - to have objective reality or being.
Jerry947

Pro

I accept this debate.
Debate Round No. 1
C_e_e

Con

Extension:
Before a word is added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the word has to have prevalence in popular usage for an extended period of time.[1] Then, it is the task of the editors to determine the intended reference when people use the word. The intended reference becomes the definition. Extension is the quality of an intended reference actually referencing what is intended. The quality is like saying, "The definition "extends" to reference something actually." For instance, my opponent and I agreed on two definitions -- one for the term "God," the other for the term "exist". What people intend to reference when they use the term "God," is "the creator of the universe, the earth particularly, and the earth"s inhabitants." And so, another way to pose the question of this debate is to ask "Does the term God"s intended reference extend to reference anyone actually?"
Helpful to us developing knowledge about how planets and solar systems form, parts of the universe are transforming. And, when we investigate protoplanetary disks and newly formed stars, for instance, we find nothing suggestive of deliberate organization. Material in protoplanetary disks might accrue to form asteroids, comets, or planets.[2] But, either development is incidental to location, the masses near them, gravitational tugs, collisions, but nothing efficient like one would expect with deliberate organization.

An attribute of true statements:
Though people might not say the following as an axiom, it is understood that true statements are often reliable to build further conclusions upon. Let"s explore how an understanding of this principle manifests during belief in God. If a person believes Proverbs, chapter two, verse eight to be true, then there should be further conclusions that one could reliably build considering the verse. The verse says, "For he guards the course of the just and protects the way of his faithful ones." Yet, the further conclusion that the faithful ones of God ought to have a statistically significant difference in their lives signifying a protected status is an unreliable conclusion. Consider if someone believes in a miracle-making God, such as how God is depicted in the Bible. Are there any reliable further conclusions that one could make believing that to be true? No; there aren"t. It is promoted as true that Jesus has risen from the dead. But, can current faithful leprous people expect to be healed in proportion to their faith? Can a group of several thousand people reasonably expect to eat and become satisfied from eating a portion of a few small fish and seven loaves of bread, as depicted in Matthew 15:37? If the answer to these questions is "No," then such beliefs have more in common with falsity than they do with truth. We know that falsity is unreliable to build further conclusions upon. But, rather than call their beliefs "false," faithful people usually conceive of additional accommodating circumstances to explain what"s observed.

History:
A review of history reveals that when less was known about nature more Gods were thought to have charge over various domains of it. The Aztecs believed in a goddess for fertility, and lakes/rivers.[3] The Greeks believed in a goddess of the harvest, and a god of the sea.[4][5] The Egyptians believed in a god of the dead, the sun, and a goddess of their cherished Nile river.[6][7] We dismissively refer to all these as myths now. But, we shouldn"t forget, that at the times they were promoted as truth, they were taken seriously. People prayed hoping their prayers were heard by a pertinent god to their concerns. Is it reasonable to call these myths now? Yes, because the contributing factors to fertility, the weather, river flooding, and harvests are understood. So, it is more reasonable to address such factors than it is to pray with hopes of intervention. Such history of former beliefs indicate knowledgeable and likely further interceding abilities in our future, so long as we commit our efforts to discovering determinants, as opposed to assuming a God could influence outcomes.

The fossil record:
The oldest fossils humans have found are of bacteria or algae. It is estimated that such fossils are 3.5 billion years old.[8] So, the oldest fossils humans have found do not have a few which are of mammals, some of birds, and another few of bacteria; instead, they are only of simple life such as bacteria and algae. Next, fossils which are estimated to be 700 million years old are of worm-like creatures. The oldest fossils of animal skeletons that have backbones are estimated to be 400 million years old. And, the oldest mammal fossils are estimated to be approximately 200 million years old. So, in the fossil record we find increasing complexity consistent with the theory of evolution.[8]

[1] http://www.merriam-webster.com...
[2] http://www.space.com...
[3] http://www.crystalinks.com...
[4] https://www.wwu.edu...
[5] https://public.wsu.edu...
[6] http://autocww2.colorado.edu...
[7] https://sites.google.com...
[8] https://www.britannica.com...
Jerry947

Pro

Here are my personal arguments for the existence of God...

1. Human Rights

Without a God, it seems that there could be no such things as rights. Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, said that "we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men were created equal, that they are endowed by God with certain unalienable rights" (http://www.ushistory.org...). He made sure to establish where rights came from before he argued for what rights humans did actually have.

But if there were no God, humans would merely have opinions of what rights we supposedly have. Rights would technically be an illusion. Some people think that is the case. But I find that those people always go back on their claims a moment later. Those people that say that will get annoyed when people steal from them and they will also be horrified when people murder each other. But why would people get annoyed at these things if people really don't have objective rights?

One possible explanation is that people are merely just angry that their things were stolen. The problem with this explanation is that people will go to court over this type of stuff. They aren't just angry about the things that were stolen but they are also ticked off at the people that had the nerve to steal from them. What does all of this show? Well, it shows that people feel like they ought to be treated in a certain way. And by the way, you can go into any society in the world and you would find the same thing happening. People everywhere feel that they have basic rights. Now, my argument is not that since people feel they have rights, therefore they actually exist. My argument is that the fact that people feel that they should be treated in a certain way points to the existence of objective rights (or an objective moral law). Surely people would not feel this way if rights didn't actually exist.

Therefore since it seems clear that rights do actually exist, God also must exist since that is the only way that rights could exist objectively.

2. The Cambrian Explosion

The Cambrian explosion was the rapid appearance of fossils in which the major groups of animals first showed up. Evolutionist Richard Dawkins even admitted in his book called "The Blind Watchmaker" that "It is as though they were just planted there, without any evolutionary history."

Furthermore the Paleontologist George Gaylord Simpson said that "Most new species, genera, and families, and nearly all categories above the level of families, appear in the records suddenly, and are not led up to by known, gradual, completely transitional sequences" ( see book called The Major Features of Evolution).

So the Cambrian explosion is the period in which all of those multi-celled organisms appear. How did this happen? Well, there are two main explanations for life. One explanation is that life resulted through random chance and by evolution or another explanation is that life was designed. Which is the better explanation? Well, since evolutionists admit that animals come into existence without any trace of any transitional sequences, I think it is very fair to say that intelligent design is the better explanation.

3. Truth

Truth has had many definitions over the course of time. The best definition I have seen is that "truth is a statement that represents reality." For example, if I were to say that Obama is currently the President of the United States, that would be a truth since it is an accurate statement about reality. However, it also follows that truths come from minds. Since truths are statements, and because minds are needed in order to make statements....truths do come from minds.

But there are other kinds of truth. There are in fact universal truths. Universal truths are statements that would be true regardless if any human had made the statement. For example, 1+1 would equal two regard if any human made the statement. Another example would be a logical truth. The universe cannot exist and not exist at the same time. That is also true and it would remain true even if no human made that truth statement.

Since there are universal truths, it also follows that there is a universal mind (God). Since truths require minds, universal truths also require a universal mind.

4. History

Throughout time the majority of people have believed in the existence of God. Why is this the case? Some argue that people use God to fill their emotional needs. Others say that people need God as a crutch. This however is a faulty view. People seem to believe in God throughout the ages due to logical reasons. With God, there is an objective moral law, there is absolute truth, and there is meaning in life. To the contrary, atheists have (throughout time) denied the existence of these things and have instead developed naturalism. I think that if I can show naturalism to be false, then it would make a theistic view of the world more plausible.

Naturalism is the the position that nature is all there is. Naturalism reduces logical thinking to mere chemical reactions of the brain. Basically all of our thoughts and beliefs are determined. There is no free-will or rationality with this worldview. Therefore, stating that one ought to be a naturalist is self-refuting. And ironically, if my opponent tries to show that naturalism is true then they will have to use logic and rationality in order to do that which would in effect prove that Naturalism is false.

Since naturalism is self-defeating and therefore false, we can conclude that the atheistic worldview cannot account for the way things are in the world. A theistic worldview however is not self-defeating and is still a worldview that can account for the way things are. It is pretty simple, a God created the universe, then created humans, and then gave people rights and etc...This worldview would not reduce logical thinking to mere chemical reactions and it would not take away meaning in life. Whether you accept this worldview is irrelevant to the debate. I merely have to show that it is superior to the atheistic worldview (naturalism) in order to do my job. And I think I have done that.

5. Personal Experience

Nothing can really beat a person's personal experience with God. I have had many experiences with God and I have witnessed God heal people on many occasions. A woman at my church was once healed of her back pain during a church service and no pain was ever felt again. But she is just one person. Millions of Christians each have their story on how they came to know Jesus. God's existence has been proven to each of these Christians and it would be very wise of you to ask them why they believe what they believe. Their stories may even convince you yet. Take a look at this story for example: http://www.cslewisinstitute.org...

It seems obvious that millions people truly believe that they have a relationship with God (as do I). I never can understand how atheists can write off something like that. How will my opponent respond to this?

Conclusion:

I thank my opponent for his opening arguments and I will await for his next response.
Debate Round No. 2
C_e_e

Con

The Cambrian Explosion:
To assert intelligent design at the Cambrian Explosion, would be an act of convenience that ignores 3 billion years of documented evolution in the fossil record prior to the Cambrian Period. The era before the Cambrian shows single celled organisms in its beginning and multicellular invertebrates towards its end.[1] Then, the first animals with shells are documented in the Neoproterozoic Period prior to the Cambrian.[1] The shell development greatly aided the fossil record going forward. Transitional forms are difficult for the fossil record to show for soft-bodied tissue. Accidents of burial, such as lucky chemical conditions that can mineralize soft-tissue as it decays are needed to preserve soft bodies in the fossil record.[2] This explains why there would be found occasional instances of transitional forms, and at times no transitional forms found at all. Also, an exception does not make a trend; there are still all the documented evolutionary norms prior to the Cambrian and afterwards as well.

“1+1 would equal two regardless if any human made the statement. “
The statement 1 + 1 = 2, is like a sentence without nouns. It matters what there is one of. If I said, “one apple plus one chair equals two fruits,” that would be a false statement. So, the addends should both be members of a larger category. And a category that both are members of should be the sum. But, in reality, meeting those criteria could still yield problems for conventional mathematical rhetoric. For, one drop of water plus one drop of water is one larger drop of water. This is because another legitimate and public meaning for the word “add” is to combine -- not just “to group.” If the phrase “universal truths” implies matters that are always true, and I have demonstrated that such alleged instances are not always true, then these are not “Universal Truths.”
Truth is a status of declarative sentences. So is falsity. As such, what is necessary to have truth and must exist before truth can occur, is language structure -- more narrowly, a means to declare states of being. It is preposterous to say seriously that “there is a condition for universals.” All one would have to do to negate them is ask what happens if the condition were not existent. Of course, the answer would be that “The alleged universal could not exist.” And yet, a condition of truth, in every instance, is a means to declare states of being.

“Another example would be a logical truth. The universe cannot exist and not exist at the same time. That is also true and it would remain true even if no human made that truth statement.”
Here, my opponent references what is called The Law of Noncontradiction[3], which I'll state formally as the axiom that “a subject cannot simultaneously exist and not exist, in the same manner, at the same time.” But, to posit the notion that this would be true regardless of a means to declare states of being, is to declare a state of being and invite consideration of the reality thereof.
For the status of being true to happen, there needs to be a means to declare a state of being for a subject. This illicites consideration of whether the posited state depicts the actual state of affairs. If we assess that it does, then we apply the label “true.” We know that there are various standards to assess matters as “true.” Some are more reliable than others; faith, interpretation, direct confirmation with identification, assessment of the ability to confirm if time and money were invested, are a few such standards. So, when my opponent says people who believe in God do so “due to logical reasons,” he is correct. Yet, Logic is the field of inquiry that investigates the means that we deem matters true, some of which are valid, invalid, sound, and so on.

”With God, there is an objective moral law, there is absolute truth, and there is meaning in life.”
“Objective Moral Law”: Firstly, regarding objective qualities: Objective qualities are qualities of an object, action, or person it/him/her self regardless of extraneous factors. Objective qualities have definite form. Does that definite form change whether a God exists? Certainly, it does not.
When we say that an action was “wrong,” for instance, we usually mean that an action was inconsiderate or dismissive of likely effective harm the act would cause for another person. The quality of being inconsiderate or dismissive of likely effective harm is present or absent of actions regardless of whether a God exists. Though, morality entails more than determining matters “right” or “wrong”; morality implies oughtness -- that one ought to do what is “right” and avoid what is “wrong”. Atheists and theists differ on the reasons for oughtness. A theist might say one ought to behave a certain way “because this life is probationary for how we will live eternal life,” “because there will be a judgment day,” in addition to the reasons atheists might cite for oughtness. An atheist might say, “how you treat others developes the way people are willing to treat you,” “if you value your life, freedoms, and anything in your life, then behavior that risks those things should be avoided.”
“Absolute Truth”: If this is another way of saying “Universal Truth,” I've addressed this.
“Meaning to life”: The “meaning,” as in “purpose” of one's life is what one assigns to it. But, the notion that a purpose is predestine and individualize would remain unsubstantiatable.

“It seems obvious that millions [of] people truly believe that they have a relationship with God (as do I). I never can understand how atheists can write off something like that. How will my opponent respond to this?”
Relationship with God Claim: After I read and studied the Bible extensively I developed a sense of what would be pleasing and wrongful in the eyes of my conceptual God. This sense became a soundboard of my mind. When I alleged to others that I had a relationship with God, in detail, I was referencing collectively my regularity of prayer, the seriousness with which I aspired to make the right conclusions in this life under notions of eternal consequences, a soundboard of my mind, which I would bounce considerations off of in efforts to determine God's will in a given circumstance, and the regularity with which I would interpret God's involvement in various affairs. But, I would not be referencing, as the term “relationship” suggests, an ability to call for God and be answered assuredly, nor any discernible partnership. So, by “good” relationship standards, I had a “poor” one, though not really one at all. And, when Christians claim to have one, I think, in detail they are referencing a similar list.

“it would be very wise of you to ask them why they believe what they believe.”
I was a Christian and not the casual type. I was so “religious” that I would disagree with the term. Because, to me, religiousness suggested adherence to institutional, rule-based, formalities. And, I was living a lifestyle -- not one based on checklist formalities, but one that took seriously the notion that how I lived now would determine how I would live eternally.

As I transitioned to atheism, over the years, I became less willing to implement different standards of truth for the religious areas of my life than I would in the other areas of my life. For instance, let's consider faith as advocated through stories of Abraham. One story says that Abraham was told by a visitor that his wife, Sarah, would have a son “this time next year.”[4] But, Sarah was beyond childbearing age. So, she laughed at the assertion.[4] But, faith as exhibited by this story entails ignoring all of one's school of experience about the likelihood of having a child after childbearing ages, and to copulate with the expectation that what you believe to be from God will happen. Another story of Abraham details traveling with the utensils for making a sacrifice with his son, because he believed God told him to sacrifice his son, Genesis 22:2.[5] Ignoring all of one's school of experience to act on a matter one believes is from God, in nonreligious context would be called “ignoring the facts,” “acting irrationally,” or “not using sound judgment.” And, it certainly wouldn't be deemed virtuous in nonreligious context.

Transitionally, for at least three years I described myself as an agnostic, partly because I wanted to be sure that I wasn't making the same logical errors under which I maintained theism. I eventually realized that the standard of truth or falsity that the agnostic seeks, is only obtainable if a subject is existent in at least a deteriorated form. If someone said, “Abraham Lincoln wants to maintain the union of the United States,” we would notice that it alleges matters of the present tense. We could retrieve the dead body of Lincoln and say, “Here is what's left of Lincoln. There is nothing to indicate that he desires anything in the present tense. So, the mere concept that Lincoln as an individual is perpetual elsewhere does not have more credence nor makes null and void evidence that can be demonstrated.” So, the absence of either proving matters false by confirming a negation, or proving matters true by showing that matters are as proclaimed when the topic is God, had more to do with the indistinguishability of God, than it had to do with knowing the steps to take to prove matters true or false. To prove a matter true one would have to distinguish the subject, and show that the subject is as stated. To prove a matter false, one would have to distinguish the subject, and show that the subject is altogether other than stated. Yet, if something doesn’t exist, no one can do the first step, which is the same for proving true and proving false, to even get to the second step, which differs.
[1] https://goo.gl...
[2] http://goo.gl...
[3] http://goo.gl...
[4] https://goo.gl...
[5] https://goo.gl...
Jerry947

Pro

This round is for rebuttals only as the rules indicate. My opponent first starts off their argument by giving two paragraphs that sort of bring up the questions that they will be discussing in their round. They for example ask "can current faithful leprous people expect to be healed in proportion to their faith? Can a group of several thousand people reasonably expect to eat and become satisfied from eating a portion of a few small fish and seven loaves of bread, as depicted in Matthew 15:37? If the answer to these questions is "No," then such beliefs have more in common with falsity than they do with truth."

I would actually agree with this. But my opponent is going to have to show that the answer is in fact no in their arguments.

1. History

a. My opponent brings up the fact that people have lost belief in gods in the past. They bring up the fact that no one really believes in the Egyptian gods any more. This may be true yet I fail to see how this disproves the existence of a god. Why does someones lack of belief in a god disprove that one exists? My opponent is going to have to do a lot more with their argument.

b. My opponent states that these gods are no longer believed in because we know understand things that contribute to the weather and etc...I might also agree with this. Science does help weed out false beliefs. I agree that people should have never worshiped the Egyptian gods. Yet, this does not disprove that there is a God that exists.

2. The Fossil Record

a. My opponent brings up the fact that fossils support the theory of evolution. I again ask the voters to extend my arguments from past rounds. The Cambrian explosion shows multi-celled organisms appearing out of no where. Since evolutionists admit that animals come into existence without any trace of any transitional sequences, it is very fair to say that intelligent design is the better explanation.

Again, no evolutionary mechanisms or anything is seen that led to this explosion. Evolutionists cannot explain this one away.

3. The Universe

My opponent believes that there is no deliberate organization in the universe. That is okay yet they would have to support that claim. My opponent states that "material in protoplanetary disks might accrue to form asteroids, comets, or planets."

Okay...then were did the planets, comets and etc...come from? I could use a teleological argument to show that the universe is in fact fine-tuned, yet I won't since this debate is about using our own personal arguments for God.

4. Conclusion

I thank my opponent for another good round and I will look forward to reading their defense of their arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
C_e_e

Con

“Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, said that 'we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men were created equal, that they are endowed by God with certain unalienable rights.'"
Mr. Jefferson was an eloquent and brilliant person. But, the popular phrase is false; people are not created equal nor do they develop equally. Considering beyond what Jefferson firmly expressed to his likely aim, a society that is accommodating to natural and social inequalities, that only after a fair process of law would ever remove rights from its citizens, we find the type of society we endeavor to maintain.
“Throughout time the majority of people have believed in the existence of God. Why is this the case?”
It's as if people were unsatisfied with not knowing why it rained, why copulation would not always yield a pregnancy, or why people would suddenly become sick. Rather than settle with not having an answer, the trend documented throughout history is that of assuming some god controls the domains that we do not understand. Then, of course, when we gained understanding of the weather, fertility, and germ theory, for instance, we adopted those demonstrable positions instead of a god. Generally speaking, people want answers. Religion will give them answers for how humans got here, how they ought to live while they are here, and even answers for what will happen after they die. But, there is a such thing as a right answer, which is more rigorous than a mere answer. History shows that people are willing to settle with the explanatory power of a mere answer.
”The Cambrian explosion shows multi-celled organisms appearing out of nowhere. Since evolutionists admit that animals come into existence without any trace of any transitional sequences, it is very fair to say that intelligent design is the better explanation.”
To assert intelligent design for the Cambrian Explosion, would be like saying to a thirty-five-year-old man that his life did not begin until he was thirty, and not meaning it figuratively -- meaning it literally. Here is a source [18] from PBS.org that estimates that life began 3.5 billion years ago. Though, it does mention chemical evidence that suggests an older beginning of life, I decided to use the lower estimate. There are 3 billion years worth of documented life prior to the Cambrian that somehow my opponent's concept of God allows for. Maybe, he believes in a bifurcated creation. Those life forms are the predecessors of subsequent life as well. Though, my opponent seems to regard those life forms as being unrelated to life he believes God inserted in the Cambrian Period. Then there is the Cambrian Explosion -- an exceptional period in fossil-record documentation that we don't know all of the contributing reasons for. Like the Egyptians, Greeks, and Aztecs, have done when they had gaps in knowledge, my opponent has claimed a god as the reason.
“Okay...then where did the planets, comets and etc...come from?”
They came from the debris that comprised the protoplanetary disks.[9][19]
“My opponent believes that there is no deliberate organization in the universe. That is okay yet they [he] would have to support that claim.”
Contributive to the support of that claim, in the second Round, I said that the development of asteroids, comets, and planets is due to a very indirect process that is incidental to location, the masses near them, gravitational tugs, and collisions. In addition to that, I'll describe aspects of star formation. I ask the readers to determine whether I provide an accurate depiction of star formation and whether the process sounds deliberately organized or not. Let's begin the story with debris, defined by Merriam-Webster as “pieces that are left after something has been destroyed.”[4] The “something” in this instance is a vast molecular cloud, several light-years across, comprised of hydrogen, helium, and fewer heavier elements which came from stars that died prior to this cloud's formation.[7] If galaxies collide, or if the shockwave of a supernova passes through the region, it might give the molecular cloud the stimulation it needs to begin collapsing.[16] If such an event does, the collapsing cloud forms a protostar surrounded by debris.[8] Conditions in which the cloud collapses involve thermal instability, turbulence, and magnetic fields.[11][12][13][14] Turbulence is mentioned in three of the four cited scientific papers about molecular clouds ([11][12][13]), and is defined by Merriam-Webster as “sudden, violent movements of air or water; a state of confusion, violence, or disorder.”[15] The fourth scientific paper ([14]) discusses thermal instability. Some time along 100,000 years to 10 million years the protostar might become a star; it might become a brown dwarf, instead.[17] Is this a thrifty management of time, process, or energy suggestive of deliberate organization?
C.S. Lewis:
I read the book review that my opponent suggested about C.S. Lewis.[20] It mentioned that C.S. Lewis was an atheist. It did not mention any specific "arguments that were obstacles to his faith"; it just said that such arguments were no longer obstacles. Mainly, Mr. Lewis adopted the tenets of Christianity and regarded them as matters-of-fact aspects of reality. He had a tendency to declare verisimilitudes, which when thought about seriously are clearly false. I'll quote a few of his verisimilitudes here: “Each day we are becoming a creature of splendid glory or one of unthinkable horror." "All other careers exist for one purpose only..." “Nothing you have not given away will ever really be yours.” "All get what they want; they do not always like it.”[21] In the book review, there is an outright false conclusion mentioned of Mr. Lewis that “atheism of the strong or intense type is to a substantial degree caused by the psychological needs of its advocates, usually related to defective father figures.”[20]
“I could use a teleological argument to show that the universe is in fact fine-tuned, yet I won't since this debate is about using our own personal arguments for God.”
We agreed on a focus being personal arguments. I was actually open to seeing as debate points any contributing factors of your faith that you thought supported the case for a god. I even said I was open to that before our debate, as documented here[1] in the comment section. So, hopefully, you would not be opposed to me quoting parts of your teleological argument, from your recent debate[1], and responding to the quotes here.
“How can you possibly say that the universe is not fine tuned for life?”[1]
99.9 percent of all life that has existed on earth is now extinct.[2]
“The 23 degree axis tilt of the earth is just right. If the tilt were altered slightly, surface temperatures would be too extreme on earth.”[1]
If the approximate 23.5 degree tilt of the earth were altered drastically to 336.5 degrees, the seasonal times would swap for the northern and southern hemispheres; when the southern hemisphere normally has winter during the year, it would have summer instead, and conversely. But, this would not yield temperatures “too extreme on earth.”
I thank my opponent for a civil debate.

[1] http://www.debate.org...
[2] http://www.pbs.org...
[4] http://www.merriam-webster.com...
[5] http://archiv.ub.uni-heidelberg.de...
[7] http://www.universetoday.com...
[8] https://www.britannica.com...
[9] https://www.cfa.harvard.edu...
[10] http://www.ns.umich.edu...
[11] https://arxiv.org...
[12] https://arxiv.org...
[13] https://arxiv.org...
[14] https://arxiv.org...
[15] http://www.merriam-webster.com...
[16] http://www.universetoday.com...
[17] http://astronomy.swin.edu.au...
[18] http://www.pbs.org...
[19] http://www.space.com...
[20] http://www.cslewisinstitute.org...
[21] http://beta.deseretnews.com...
Jerry947

Pro

1. The Cambrain Explosion

a. My opponent basically says that the fossils that showed the transitional forms could have decayed over time. The problem here is that we expect to find trillions of transitional forms and yet we find none during this period of time. Does my opponent really expect us to believe that all of those forms decayed just like that? And my opponent states that these forms were found before and after the explosion. Yet, I didn't see anything in their sources about transitional forms being found. I only read about organisms from the time period being found.

2. The Truth Argument

a. My opponent doesn't answer my question. They don't say if they believe that 1+1 would equal two would still be true even if no human even said the statement.

b. Again, my opponent dances around my question and does not acknowledge the logical truth I stated. But from what I can tell, they seem to affirm the law of non-contradiction.

3. Objective Meaning...

a. My opponent states that "The quality of being inconsiderate or dismissive of likely effective harm is present or absent of actions regardless of whether a God exists."

This is not true. What is inconsiderate would be a matter of opinion if there were no objective standard (that only a God could set up). So nothing is really wrong if there is no God. I have discussed this many times before.

b. My opponent asserts that people can give their own life meaning. Yet this is just false. It is like saying that a person can wish themselves to be a unicorn and then actually be a unicorn. You can't just say that your life has meaning and then all of a sudden have true meaning.

4. History Argument

a. My opponent basically admitted that they never have had a true relationship with God. But there are of course people who do say that God is actively working in their lives. And I noticed that my opponent had nothing to say about the women who was healed of her back pain.

5. Rights

a. My opponent never seems to address my argument. They never deny that rights exists but they never say where they come from.

6. Why do people believe in a God?

My opponent seems to think people use God as someone they use to answer questions they have about the universe. This is partly true but it fails to account for naturalistic explanations. People choose God over these other explanations. Why is that Con?

7. Going back to the Cambrain explosion, I go with intelligent design since evolution fails as an explanation. There are no evolutionary mechanisms seen, and since the universe is complex and etc...intelligent design is the best explanation.

As for C.S. Lewis, my opponent again does not address the fact that he became a Christian due to certain reasons. The way he thought about morality was a big reason he became a Christian. But I notice that my opponent never really respond to my arguments but instead says something off topic.

8. As for fine-tuning...this is not something I brought up at all in this debate. But the fact that 99.9% of all life that existed is now extinct does not address the argument I gave in previous debates. I mean, humans are the main reason for that and it fails to answer why the universe is so complex and etc...

As for the earth's axis tilt, I honestly do not have the time to go into that. I had a good couple of sources in that debate that my opponent is quoting from and if anyone wants to read them, they can.

Conclusion:

I thank my opponent for the debate. I have showed that there arguments did not disprove God in anyway shape or form and I have also defended my five personal arguments for the existence of God. With that, I now await to see the results of the debate.
Debate Round No. 4
29 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by C_e_e 3 months ago
C_e_e
...(continued) If so, then those things can be declared and have the status of being true or false as well. After all of that, what would have sustained "truth" would not have been a god, but would have been animals declaring states of being and their discourse reaching a level of sophistication to converse about mathematics and to rediscover the field of inquiry we call "logic."
Posted by C_e_e 3 months ago
C_e_e
@Jerry947
I wanted to devote some time to answering your question about truth, Jerry. And, I know that this isn't to get points for debate nor is this an extension of debate. I don't interpret it as such and I hope it won't be interpreted as such. I'm doing this because I think it was an earnest question from you and you didn't feel it was sufficiently answered. In fact, you called my response "dancing around" the matter. But, what you were asking was very hypothetical. I want to try to attempt a better answer here, especially since you thought I was "dancing around" which I really wasn't doing. So, building on what I mentioned during the debate and addressing the intricacies of this hypothetical: I believe that truth can only be "a thing" if there is a means to declare states of being, for it is a status of those declarative states of being as corresponding to the actual state of affairs. The hypothetical begins "if all humans were extinct would there be a means to declare states of being?" In other words, would the elimination of people also eliminate the ability to declare states of being in the universe? This inadvertently leads us into an analysis of animals and a consideration of aliens. Well, we don't know if the word "alien" has extension. So, skipping that to address animals: When animals make sounds after noticing a predator nearby are they saying "Ahhhh! Be alert!" -- exclamatory and imperative sentences (and those don't count when it comes to truth and falsity), or are they saying, "There is a predator near!" -- a declarative sentence? If they are saying "There is a predator near!" then they are declaring a state of being for a subject and truth thereby can still be an existent thing; for, that sentence can have the status of being true or false. Next, the intricacies go further by challenging us to answer "Would the discourse of animals ever be intellectual enough to declare laws of logic or to converse about mathematics?" ...
Posted by C_e_e 3 months ago
C_e_e
I thank BackCommander, TheHitchSlap, Discipulus_Didicit, and FaustianJustice for their votes. If their reasoning had been accepted by the moderator Blade-of-Truth, their awarded points would have totaled 15 -- BackCommander (5), TheHitchSlap (5), Discipulus_Didicit (3), and FaustianJustice (2). Mr. BackCommander donated his time twice to vote. His votes were removed twice. Mr. TheHitchSlap donated his time and voted twice as well. His votes were removed each time. It is amazing to have once the kindness of strangers; but to have the repeated donated time and kindness of strangers is truly awesome. So, I wanted to formally thank them despite the outcome.
Posted by Blade-of-Truth 3 months ago
Blade-of-Truth
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>Reported vote: TheHitchslap // Mod action: Removed<

5 points to Pro (Arguments, Sources). Reasons for voting decision: Source: Con has WAY more. Higher quality. Con uses peer reviewed sources and educational reputable ones. Pro uses apologist sites, with clear bias. Args: Con. For a couple of reasons: Pro relies on anecdotal evidence (personal relationship he apparently has with God), and mostly bare assertions for his case. Respectfully, what can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence, and Con gives us a refutation with evidence. Pro fails to make BOP as a result. Con's ancient Gods argument being the biggest killer here to Pro's case, because as much as Pro has a point that it doesn't actually disprove God doesn't exist, what Pro is asking Con to do is give evidence of something that doesn't exist. However, you can't by definition do that if God doesn't exist, because there would be no evidence of his existance. You cannot falsify a double negative that Pro is asking for. BOP isn't on Con to prove he doesn't exist, its on Pro to prove he does. With that, args to Con.

[*Reason for removal*] Sources are insufficiently explained. The voter is required to do more than simply compare the number of sources each side presents and award points on that basis. In assessing quality, the voter must specifically explain why certain sources are higher quality. That requires more than just a statement that some sources are "peer reviewed... and educational reputable" and others are "apologist sites, with clear bias."
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Posted by whiteflame 3 months ago
whiteflame
And what I'm saying is that their "summarizing ways" are insufficient to meet the voting standards. You may disagree with that, but that's how they're set up.

I haven't been getting notifications on the thread I posted, so I might have missed subsequent posts from you. In any case, while I'm engaged in my current debate, I won't have time to do it.
Posted by C_e_e 3 months ago
C_e_e
WhiteFlame, we said the same thing in different ways.
You said "they only alluded to quality."
I said they spoke in summarizing ways.

And when you find the time, to formally debate your contention that Jerry better supported the resolution or that "objective" and "fair" are applicable terms in your analysis, I am ready, WhiteFlame.
Posted by whiteflame 3 months ago
whiteflame
C_e_e, the problem with sources is two-fold. First, they have to explain why your sources were stronger. Saying "multiple reliable sources" is not an explanation, nor is pointing out that some sources supported certain arguments. Explaining that some sources have less bias might be the start of an explanation, but the voter is required to explain why that is the case, and not merely assert it.

Second, they have to explain why your opponent's sources were weaker. So far, all of the voters involved in this have only cited quantity and alluded to quality issues. Quantity alone cannot be the reason a voter awards source points, and any quality issues need to be spelled out plainly.
Posted by C_e_e 3 months ago
C_e_e
Blade-of-Truth, this is the third time you have removed votes for sources -- once for FaustianJustice, BackCommander, and TheHitchSlap.

Instead of saying "universities" and "scientific peer-reviewed articles," (which you seem to require to hear from them) they have referenced those things in a summarizing way with phrases such as "multiple reliable sources," BackCommander, "more sources that were supporting to their case regarding origins of life, and were more reliable regarding having less potential bias," FaustianJustice.
Posted by Blade-of-Truth 3 months ago
Blade-of-Truth
@BackCommander, a friend request I sent to you has been pending for awhile now. Please accept it at your earliest convenience and I will provide a more detailed message explaining ways to improve your vote based on our voting guide.
Posted by Blade-of-Truth 3 months ago
Blade-of-Truth
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>Reported vote: BackCommander// Mod action: Removed<

5 points to Pro (Arguments, Sources). Reasons for voting decision: I adequately weigh out both sides before voting and tend to save myself some time by only pointing out the DECIDING factors of my vote, rather than every single thing that factored into it. Being that the rules of this site only require that I explain my vote, not that the mods agree with it, I'd say my previous vote should have remained. Regardless, by coming from a place of neutrality Pro's argument relies heavily on already believing in God's existence. Looking at it from a neutral point Con's argument of ALL ancient gods falling out of worship due to the advancement in the sciences does wonders for his side. Pro's claim that this doesn't disprove the existence of a god is correct, but it easily raises doubt about it. Leaning me more towards Con that Pro. That is one of the many points Con made that Pro did not adequately counter. The sources vote goes to Con because he had multiple reliable sources, as opposed to only two. Con had a few weak sources, but many strong ones.

[*Reason for removal*] Sources are insufficiently explained. The voter is required to do more than simply compare the number of sources each side presents and award points on that basis. The voter appears to begin to assess their quality, but it should be clear why the voter believes that one side had strong sources and the other had weak ones. A general statement such as the one the voter made is insufficient.

Note: Voters are required to meet basic thresholds in terms of explanation of their decisions. This voter may disagree with those thresholds, but they have been explained in detail on multiple occasions. They aren't general rules of the site, but they are rules applied to voting.
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4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by FaustianJustice 3 months ago
FaustianJustice
C_e_eJerry947Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: 3 points to Pro (Arguments), 2 points to Con (Sources). Reasons for voting decision: "Does not exist" is a very -very- high BoP to execute, and the various argumentation by Con, while good in their own right, to me, don't specifically exclude the potential of a creator deity. Pro is able to weave enough doubt and raise enough rukus to keep con focused on specific rebuttals rather than the over-arcing aspect of the case. There is a lot that Pro brings to the table that could have been shown to be more man's construct than a deity (and thus irrelevant) but that avenue was panned in favor of chasing anecdote and regressive questions (How/where did XYZ come from if not God). I would have liked to have perhaps seen a history of theism, and how religion on the whole was man's creation, making God a construction of imagination, rather than arguing into Pro's refutes.
Vote Placed by whiteflame 3 months ago
whiteflame
C_e_eJerry947Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: RFD given here: http://www.debate.org/forums/religion/topic/91644/
Vote Placed by Greyparrot 3 months ago
Greyparrot
C_e_eJerry947Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Rights are granted from sentient humans, not a god. The cambrian explosion does not prove the existence of a god, at best it proves a lack of evidence for any conclusion. Truth is dependant on evidence as well. Not enough evidence for the pro side.
Vote Placed by Discipulus_Didicit 3 months ago
Discipulus_Didicit
C_e_eJerry947Tied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Arguments from pro and con were equally well written, but the ones from con were noticably stronger. Specifically pros arguments about human rights and the cambrian explosion, both with numerous obvious fallacies pointed out by con such as the idea of human rights existing in the first place being a falsehood and the uneducated notion that the so-called cambrian explosion was an example of multi-cellular life appearing 'out of nowhere'. These are just two examples of pros arguments that con was able to dismiss. As for cons positive case some parts seemed a bit more wordy than necessary in the beginning, but that doesn't make the arguments invalid. The most memorable part of this debate would be the part in round three where pro quoted cons explanation of where planets came from, only to then ask where planets came from. Especially funny since con had already addressed this silly god of the gaps notion all the way back in their round two.