The Instigator
tala00131
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
MysticEgg
Con (against)
Winning
7 Points

Does God exist?

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
MysticEgg
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/3/2013 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 564 times Debate No: 37314
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (4)
Votes (1)

 

tala00131

Pro

Hi, I would like to thank my opponent for accepting this debate today. The question of whether or not God exists, is a question that has been asked for a very long time. Tonight, I will be arguing for Christian theism. I would like to defend two major points. First, there is no good reason that atheism is true. Second, there are good reasons that theism is true. Atheists for many years have tried to disprove the existence of God, but no one has come up with a successful argument. So let"s go on to the second point that there are good reasons to think that theism is true. There are six major arguments I will present, that I believe demonstrate the truth of theism.

The Cosmological Argument from Contingency: Whatever exists has an explanation of its existence, the universe exists, therefore, the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is God. Let's look at premise one: whatever exists has an explanation of its existence. Either something exists necessarily, or it has a transcendent cause. God is not exempt from this premise, God exists necessarily , his non existence is impossible. Now, picture yourself running in the woods with your friends. You see a ball on the Forrest floor, you stop and look at it, your friend says: don't worry about it, it's just there, it has no explanation. You would either think he's crazy, or you'd think he wanted you to keep walking. Picture that ball the size of a house, it wouldn't change the fact that it had an explanation, picture that ball the size of the whole universe, it wouldn't change the fact that it had to have an explanation of its existence. Now, the universe can't exist necessarily, because the universe began to exist. The fact that the universe is expanding and running out of usable energy proves the universe had a beginning. Now, the second premise is obviously true, the universe exists. The third premise: God is that explanation, is also true. The cause of the universe must exist outside of time and space. The cause of the universe must be: timeless, space less, immaterial, and powerful. This sounds a lot like God.

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.

In conclusion, I have given five good arguments to think that God exists. If my opponent is to say that God doesn"t exist, he will have to tear down all of the arguments that I presented, and then give his own case to say that God doesn"t exist. Unless, and until he does that, Christianity is the much more reasonable worldview.
MysticEgg

Con

I thank my opponent for this opportunity to debate; I will jump straight in!

Opponent's Note 1: No one has:
a) Shown atheism to be true and
b) Shown that God is false.

Well, that is actually the same point of "You cannot disprove God!" that is so often thrown around the debating board. I will make two points of my own to counter this:
a) The burden of proof is not on the one denying the assertion, it is on the one making it. Hence, "you cannot disprove God" is an equivocation fallacy of: God is true, because no one has proved it false. Also,
b) Is that "atheism is not true" card from shockofgod on YouTube? ((Just wondering.))


Opponent's Contention 1: The Cosmological Argument from Contingency

This is the argument that my opponent makes:


P1: Whatever exists has a [natural] explanation for its existence.
P2: The Universe exists.
C1: Therefore, the Universe has a [natural] explanation for its existence.
C2: Therefore, that explanation is [the Christian] God.

Now, even if C2 was correct (ignoring the Christian bit), it would not prove the Christian God. It would prove a god. Certainly! But it is a huge leap of faith to put in "the Christian" there. I would ask my opponent to demonstrate how this leap of faith isn't a leap of faith; and is logical. I could put in Ra or Chaos, which would actually disprove God, because they would contradict each other.


However! Objection!

This argument does not work. Allow me to show you why.
P1, P2, and C1 work on their own. Again, though, C2 is a huge leap of faith, for the reason:
God is supernatural, and thus doesn't follow from C1. (If you didn't mean natural, then P1 is also incorrect, because a natural explanation takes priority, and we can naturally explain anything that exists).

My opponent states that "God is necessary." However, he has given no reason why; even when there is nothing that cannot be explained naturally, based on historical development and predictive capabilities. Thus, until he does, I will dismiss the claim without evidence.

As for the ball analogy, yes, we would need an explanation and would be baffled. However, change "ball" to "God" and it still makes sense as an analogy. The problem is, there is no explanation for God that you have given. (I will come onto the explanation for the Universe later).


Opponent's Contention 2: The Kalām Cosmological Argument.

My opponent's argument can be summed up as follows:


P1: Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
P2: The Universe began to exist.
C1: The Universe has a cause.
C2: The cause of the Universe was [the Christian] God.

Again, even if this worked (excluding the Christian bit), my opponent takes a huge leap of faith by inserting "the Christian" there. Why not Zeus? Apollo? Chaos? Zug-Zug the Great? (The Christian) is merely an assertion that was made without evidence. Thus, until evidence is provided that it is the Christian God, and not Zug-Zug the Great, I can dismiss "the Christian" bit. Therefore, my opponent has not met his burden of proof.



However! Objection! (Again...O.o)

As for P1, we can go back and forth with this, though I will counter that quantum fluctuations occur, spawning subatomic particles out of nothing and for no reason at all. So I contest premise one.

On premise two, I contest this as well. We don't have evidence that demonstrates the Universe began to exist. My opponent puts forward a couple of things to back up P2:
a)The Universe is expanding, therefore, it has a cause.
b) The Second Law of thermodynamics.


Let's have a look at these, one at a time. First, it is another leap of faith. It should be:

The Universe is expanding, therefore, there was a starting point of the expansion. But to say that this starting point of the expansion was the start of the Universe is just an assumption, and my opponent has provided no evidence to show how it is anything but. It could be an oscillating Universe. Expands, then contracts, etc...
On the second law of thermodynamics, I would make two points.
1) If the Universe is infinite, then the second law of thermodynamics doesn't apply, because an infinite system has no bounds, and is thus not closed.
2) If the Universe is finite but unbound (like the Earth), then there is something that the Universe can expand into, and it is not closed. Either way, the second law would not have applied. (the Universe cannot be finite and bound, because it is expanding[1]).

In conclusion:

My opponent has not shown how P2 is true, and thus it can be dismissed, refuting the argument.
My opponent has not shown how C2 follows logically, and thus it can be dismissed, refuting the argument.

Opponent's Contention 3: A fine tuned Universe [for life].

This is not logical. The Universe is not hospitable for life in most places. Anything that is not in "the Goldilocks Zone" cannot survive[2]. So, that alone refutes this argument. However, even within the Goldilocks zones scattered about the Universe, a lot of that is inhospitable. Take our Moon. That is within the zone, however, life (that we know of) cannot live there. So no, the Universe is not fine tuned. As for: "Scientists have been shocked by the fact that the conditions of the universe have been finely tuned for life to exist." I'd quite like a source, please? It's just that I personally never heard any scientist say this, and would quite like to hear one. Not necessary, but I can dismiss that claim without a source.

In conclusion:


It would be accurate to say "life is fine tuned for the part of the Universe that it is found on", but not "the Universe is fine tuned for life."

Opponent's Contention 4: Irreducible Complexity.

This argument is not presented as an argument, but as an opinion. "
I am quite skeptical...I have a problem with... I believe... I have a hard time to believe". If my opponent would like me to address this argument, then I would ask him to make it an argument instead of an opinion. However, as long as it remains as such, I will dismiss it, because opinion does not equal argument.

Opponent's Contention 5: The Moral Argument.

My opponent's argument goes as follows:


P1: Objective morals cannot exist without [the Christian] God.
P2: Objective moral values exist.
C1: Therefore, [the Christian] God exists.

Again, I will state that my opponent does not show that this is proof for the Christian god. As such, he has not met his burden. Now, for P1, I will contest that they can exist without God, they can exist through evolution. It is easy to see how human evolution calls for objective morals. Humans are a pack animal, so much so that if you don't act like such you're called a "hermit". We also have no natural predator, meaning that we could turn to each other. So, to solve this problem, we incorporate an objective moral value that "killing is bad". Evolution provides a very good explanation for this. "Evolution is all about survival, and reproduction." Indeed! And morals suit the job of survival quite well for humans. The argument is refuted.


Opponent's Contention 6: The resurrection of Jesus.
My opponent makes several bold claims here, indeed! One such claim is that the "fact" that Jesus' tomb was discovered by a group of women. My opponent gives no source for this claim. If he would give the Bible, then that is not a source, as it is full of contradictions[3] and thus cannot be trusted. However, I will also state that, even when assuming that the tomb was

a) found and
b) was empty
There are still natural explanations. For example, Jesus was Jewish, the Romans were oppressive, stealing the body would get at the Romans - go figure. Another reason could be bribery, luck, brute force (like a mob) etc... There are plenty of reasons.

To counter this, my opponent will have to:
a) Give reliable sources.
b) Counter my natural explanations as improbable.

So, for now, my opponent has failed to meet his burden, and I can rest easy. I will eagerly await my opponent's response(s)!


Source(s):

[1]http://www.bbc.co.uk...
[2]http://en.wikipedia.org...

[3]http://www.infidels.org...



Debate Round No. 1
tala00131

Pro

tala00131 forfeited this round.
MysticEgg

Con

It's a shame that my opponent has forfeited the rest of his debate; so there's nothing left for me to do but thank my opponent, the audience, and the voters for an entertaining, if one sided, debate!

The only other for me to do is, of course, extend all arguments and refutes.

Regards,
J
Debate Round No. 2
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by ooberman 3 years ago
ooberman
It's interesting that tala is echoing WLC's sentiment that "I don't use these arguments to believe in God. I use them to show that a belief in God is reasonable."

Craig admits that even if he had solid proof against the Resurrection of Jesus, he wouldn't believe it over the "self-authenticating knowledge of Jesus-is-God in his heart".

This is really the heart of the matter. Theists are not theists because of reason, but emotion. They have simply found a mildly interesting emotion for philosophers to mull over.
Posted by MysticEgg 3 years ago
MysticEgg
1 and 2: We cannot say the Universe began. We can say that time, space, and matter expanded rapidly in what is known as the Big Bang. TSLoT (The Second Law of Thermodynamics) only works in a closed system. The Universe is infinite, however, meaning that it will always be considered open.

3: Hardly. Life will grow however the Universe is "tuned" (NOTE: You assume there would be a tuner, and thus beg the question), so this is hardly an argument.

4: This is clearly just your opinion, which doesn't equal argument.

5: Morality is relative, however it's really easy to see how evolution and "survival of the fittest" would benefit from morals. Humans are a pack animal, and thus would not benefit from killing each other. That's just one example of how morals are embedded into us, although it is relative, because killing someone to defend your children is considered an exception.

Up until this point, all these would prove a deist world view better than theist and Christianity.

6: Heh, this is really easy to refute. The Jews had reasons, for sure.
a) Jesus was Jewish..
b) It could be easy vengeance to get on the Romans
c) Claiming he must have rose from the dead would score huge political points, like, oh I don't know, convincing ~30% of the world's population in the future?

In conclusion, you have repeated one of WLC's talks, several ancient and, frankly, weak arguments, one was just opinion, two suffered the same downfall, one swapped modes, and the last one is very "this could have happened, therefore, God". No offense, but this wasn't very hard to refute.

Kind regards,
J
Posted by tala00131 3 years ago
tala00131
These arguments aren't even my basis for believing in God. I simply use them to convince other people.
Posted by sam.conran 3 years ago
sam.conran
Haha :') Again? The same argument with the addition of the Kalam?

Whoever accepts this debate, look at https://www.debate.org... for the types of responses. Equally, look at https://www.youtube.com... because I noticed, and another also pointed out, that his arguments are almost identical to WLC's in that debate :) Good luck!
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by ooberman 3 years ago
ooberman
tala00131MysticEggTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Clear win for Con. Of course, I haven't seen a good argument for God, so, it's hard to vote for any theist argument - unless the atheist simply sh*^'s the bed.