Does God exist?
Debate Rounds (5)
This is is a formal debate, so you know how the debate structure goes:
2: Pro- rebuttal and presentation
3:Con- Rebuttal and P
4:Pro Rebuttal and P
5: Con- R & P
6: Pro- R & P
7: Con- Final rebut and conclusion
8: Pro- FInal rebut and conclusion
My debate structure might be wrong, but let us see how this goes. As for the opponent, good luck to him. Note that neither I nor the contender wishes to win the debate, but rather to present their case and build up on it. I am looking for a friendly discussion, not arguing endlessly, but to learn from each other and teach one another and uphold one another's dignity during the debate. If the contender wishes to accept the debate, he has to agree with some rules outlined:
- No fallacious reasoning like ad hominem, appeal to majority or authority or circular reasoning (my explanation of an objective basis based on God's character might seem circular, but this has to be excused since some ideas that are valid features circular reasoning, but this does not make question begging valid holistically.)
- Must acknowledge that all evidence are to be interpreted one's according to his own worldview, no evidence speaks for itself. every piece of evidence has to be interpreted.
-No put downs or insults to each other.
-Contender must realise if the Pro brings up the Bible as a proof that God exists, he should not treat it as circular reasoning. Contender should see this link why: http://creation.com...
- Sources cited can be listed on the last round.
- No "Science vs Religion" canard, this is not about about science but about one's authority and worldviews- neither atheism or non-theism or theism is science. Science explains how the world works, not how the world began.
- Subjective views are not allowed, only objective arguments.
Good luck, contender and instigator, if any violates of these rules, he loses a point for it. Godspeed.
First lets start by explaining that everyone has a right to an opinion, and should not be ridiculed for them. I myself am agnostic; after practicing Christianity for 6 years, I have learned to think outside the box. I challenged my knowledge by stating to myself, "How can something exist when nothing was their to create it." You can keep going on and on all day saying if god created everything that we see today then where did he originate from, and if so where did the being that created this omnipotent god come from. This is just a thought you see, we humans are born knowing only what where are taught. Everything that was created is synthetic, language, time, measurements etc. These are my thoughts. The bible is a time span of 6000 years, according to geology the earth is proven to be nearly 4.6 billion years old. Reminder these are my beliefs. In the bible god created earth, and all that jazz but where does it say he created a whole universe of diverse life, which thinking logically no matter what other organisms looks like they are out there somewhere. Me personally looking at evolution which I stand neutral and show no enthusiasm. saying that things evolved from chimpanzees I thing impractical. William Lain Graig's argument for the existence of theism is based on this sequence which is fairly true in my eyes.
P1: Nothing which exists can cause something which does not exist to begin existing.
P2: Given (1), Anything which begins to exist was not caused to do so by something which exists.
P3: The universe began to exist.
P4: Given (2) and (3), the universe was not caused to exist by anything which exists.
P5: God caused the universe to begin to exist.
C1: Given (4) and (5), God does not exist.
My opponent will know now show his information appropriately, and accordingly to the topic, good luck remember this is a friendly debate no offense was intended.
'The bible is a time span of 6000 years, according to geology the earth is proven to be nearly 4.6 billion years old.'.
When you add up all the chrono-genealogies in Genesis plus 2000 years from Christ until now, you'll get roughly an answer of 6000 years. Some Christians contend to keep the old age and the Bible along with it, but this is inconsistent as it brings foreign ideas to Scripture. On the other hand, "geology" doesn't "prove" the Earth is 4.6 billion years old. This kind of geology is what you call uniformitarian geology patterned after Lyell's idea of uniformitarianism in contrast to catastrophic geology (Noah's Flood). This geology actually presupposes the Earth is billions of years old in order to get a date of 4.6 billion years. So the "age" is just a rough guess, just like saying the Earth is 6000 years old.
'Me personally looking at evolution which I stand neutral and show no enthusiasm. saying that things evolved from chimpanzees I think impractical.'.
Well the issue of Origins sadly is not an issue open for neutrality, everyone has to take a stance for which side they pick on. Jesus says that anyone who is not with him is really against him and those who scatter are not helping him. Neutral means a default position of taking man's authority. Regardless whether you're neutral about it or not, you're not really neutral at the Origins controversy, it's a myth in totality.
'You can keep going on and on all day saying if god created everything that we see today then where did he originate from, and if so where did the being that created this omnipotent God come from.'.
Trying to find out something that is before the ultimate beginning of everything is trying to find a needle in haystack. God in His own nature is self-existent and is an Eternal Being (with no beginning or no end). Since the universe is created and has a beginning and will have an end as well as finite- then God who created that universe is eternal and has beginning or no end. Thus there is no need to answer than question, since that question is like a bright and a deep philosopher trying to argue with a 5 year old kid and asking her that question.
P1: This is contradictory, nothing is a complete lack of something; a polar opposite of something Nothing lacks a single thing of a thing- it is a complete lack of anything; it is not anything and doesn't contain a trace of a thing at all. Something is something that can be observed of its properties and of its effects and of its traits. But you can't observe the traits, properties of nothing- it is a complete lack of something- it is not anything at all. Nothing doesn't cause anything to exist, because it is nothing of its own- it has no traits whatsoever. But something that exists is caused by another something that too exists. Because if something that is caused to exist has traits and properties, then the cause of that something too possess traits and properties- which renders none of effect that it is not non-existent and nothing at all (Since nothing possesses NO thing in a conclusion).
P2: Anything that is not existent that caused anything to exist is not going to bring anything about because anything that is non-existent is nothing;anything that exists is something and a product of another something. ANY-thing is another form of something- it has a thing and lacks no-thing of it whatsoever. Anything that has began to exist is a product of something. Nothing brings nothing because it lacks any thing and has no properties of its own. Something is another product of something while nothing is vice versa. Existence is something, not nothing.
P3 & P4: Indeed, the universe began to exist, which is clearly something- it is not nothing, it has traits and properties of its own; nothing lacks properties and it not of a thing at all. The universe is something not nothing, therefore if there is something that exists then that something is a product of another something that exists as shown in P2.Non-existence will not cause existence- it just causes another non-existence at all-but existence can cause another existence since existence proceeds from another existence.
P5: Of course, because God is a Something- a Being that exists. The universe is a one big something caused by another something which is God. If therefore the universe is something then it is caused by another Something which is God.
C1: Anything that exists is another product of something that exists and anything that does not exists will yield well, no existence of a something at all! This is because the universe is something, not a nothing. Something= another something; nothing=another nothing.
1: Something that is brought about is by of another something. Something cannot cause of its own to exist, since the desired cause is on par with its effect e.g. its existence and self-refuting. So something that is an effect has to be brought about by something that is a cause of its effect.
2: But when something brought about and caused is an effect, then that follows that something that has been caused is a product of a cause that is even greater than the effect itself e.g. a ball flying at 150km/hr is an effect, it is caused about by the swing of the bat by a batter by using energy and massive force from his body. Hence, a ball that stands by its own is not going to fly or anything- unless a great expenditure of force and energy is used to send it flying. Something that stands by its own is not an effect, an effect is something that is a product of a greater Cause than the effect itself.
3: The universe is one great big effect. It has levels of high complexity, order and structure anywhere we can see from the simplest cell to the largest galaxy ever known there is. It is bound by natural laws governing it, it is material and natural and of physical dimension. Too is subject to contingency of change.
4: If the universe has levels of high complexity and finite and bound by natural laws and physical domain, then that follows that the Cause behind it is even of more complexity, not bound by the natural laws and transcendent above the physical domain, is Infinite and immutable (the material plane is subject to contingency of change).
5: If the universe is a great big effect and the Cause behind it is even more greater and bigger than it, then that cause behind it is God. Since an effect brought about is caused something by a Cause that is of greater stature and status than the effect itself; and since the universe itself is a one big great effect- then the Cause is even more greater and bigger than that which is God.
Conclusion: Therefore according to the Cause and Effect principle, the universe is an effect and an effect is caused by a Cause that is even greater than the effect (cosmos). Since the universe is an effect, its Cause has to be greater than something and that Cause is God. Since God possessed traits and properties even greater and beyond than that the universe can have and He created the universe and all everything there is therein. Therefore in a conclusion, God does exists because the universe (an effect) accounts of Something/Cause that is even of higher power than the universe itself. That Cause in a finality, is God hence.
So, in a conclusion, I hope my opponent can teach me a thing if there is any shallow reasoning on my argument, just as I have done it so on his first argument. Wait, I thought you were an agnostic and you're an atheist? (Well agnosticism is just sitting in a fence- it's not being "neutral" about God- it's against God I tell you.) BTW, good luck on your response, mate. (Maybe I should start an apologetics team called "Darwin-busters" or "Dawkins-busters" what do you think?)
Knowing the correct definition of the words that I am using is very important, so to help you better understand what all the aspects of religion are.
(A) Theism: "God exists"
(B) Non-theism: "I don't believe that God exists" (a biographical statement, not a position)
(B.1) Atheism: "God does not exist" (a position)
(B.2) Agnosticism: "I don't know if God exists" (a position)
(B.2.1) Hard Agnosticism: "Anything about God is unknowable" (self-refuting, it claims knowledge about an unknowable)
(B.2.2) Soft Agnosticism: "I don't know if God exists, but it's possible for someone to know.
You my friend seem to believe in theism, where I fall into agnosticism where I do not know if the god that every theist believes in is the same higher power that has created EVERYTHING. Maybe its not a person who looks human with omnipotent powers, this is hard to understand knowing that their is diverse life in the universe. It is a kind of selfish reasoning to believe that we are the only beings in the universe which is what religion says. It basically stats that he created earth, humans, animals, light/dark, and to look into the sky you see all those stars now think for every star you add 10 planets roughly orbiting those stars the number comes out to be something like this. 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars are in the whole universe, this is just stars now add 10 to 10000 planets orbiting a signal star at one time. Their is no doubt that there is more than what we know of life out in the universe. Back to the topic of religion. God is said to know everything or be omniscient, then why would he create humans knowing that they would fall victim to evil and betray him.You would have thought he would create a human that would not commit error. Then having God flood the earth and start over. I have myself tried to pray when it was time to pray. when a situation was not in my favor and i asked him for forgiveness nothing changes. I am just saying that the god you believe in is not the same as the one that I do, the only problem is I don't know anything about my higher power.
My opponent will now present his rebuttal, good luck to you.
A) Not just any kind of "God" that exists but the God of the Bible- the Creator of Heaven and Earth and the One who became flesh to die for our sins and to undo the work of Adam in the Garden of Eden.
B&1) These two beliefs are rather confusing and seems to be just affirming the non-existence of God all the same. Atheism is an intellectual suicide, in order to know that God exists- one has to match the attributes of God in order to prove His Existence or Non-Existence; which is self-defeating. Atheism takes a lot of faith to believe in than Biblical Monotheism just as one says, 'There is no Gold in China' (He has to go through all places and narrow paths of China in order to prove that) than saying, "There is Gold in China' by just stumbling upon a single gold piece in China.
'...I do not know if the god that every theist believes in is the same higher power that has created EVERYTHING.'.
Absolutely, some religions has vestiges of same beliefs corresponding to Christian beliefs and similar to its doctrines. There are also religions that has conflicting theologies with one another. That can be explained according to the Bible, the Bible testifies that all men knew the existence of God by their own conscience and by creation- everything around them testifies of a Creator. But as time passes, their knowledge of God wavered, distorted, twisted or suppressed altogether. Some gods demands works of righteousness to be saved, but the God of the Bible demands to come as they are, confess your sins and accept what this God has done for you and turn your life around.
'It is a kind of selfish reasoning to believe that we are the only beings in the universe which is what religion says.'
"Selfish" is probably not the word here to be used, the word here probably is "special"- that we are the only beings here in the cosmos. To say you're special doesn't mean "selfish" in some times, you can appreciate yourself without pride or boastful egotism.
'It basically states that he created earth, humans, animals, light/dark, and to look into the sky you see all those stars now think for every star you add 10 planets roughly orbiting those stars the number comes out to be something like this. 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars are in the whole universe, this is just stars now add 10 to 10000 planets orbiting a signal star at one time. Their is no doubt that there is more than what we know of life out in the universe.'
Exactly! The God that created everything is an awesome God and those lots of stars testifies to His mighty power and that He could do it in just an instant second. Much more how awesome He gave Himself for us so that we could come to Him!
Correct, the cosmos is such a vast place and we humans might never be able to understand it even we reached to a point of advanced technology. 2 Timothy 3:7, 'Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.'- people will learn and learn and still searching for "truth out there" and never be able to be satisfied because of it. This is because they ignored the Real Truth that has been around with them for 2000 years and the Truth is a Person- not a something. The more you keep ignoring the Truth, the more you will be ever dissatisfied with your "Quest for the truth out there".
'God is said to know everything or be omniscient, then why would he create humans knowing that they would fall victim to evil and betray him. You would have thought he would create a human that would not commit error. Then having God flood the earth and start over. I have myself tried to pray when it was time to pray. when a situation was not in my favor and I asked him for forgiveness nothing changes. I am just saying that the god you believe in is not the same as the one that I do, the only problem is I don't know anything about my higher power.'.
God does know that humans will fall to sin once He created them. But it is not of His own fault they sinned, it's their own fault that they disobeyed Him. God gave them the chance to love Him or to Hate him and they chose the latter than the former. Just because God knows what will happen in the future doesn't mean you don't have free will. This is because God is outside of time and sees past, present and future simultaneously. To know something in the future does not rob of your future. For example, if my friend in the future knew the choice I have made for tomorrow (which is his past) it does not rob of my free will that I have freely decided it for myself without pressure. It can be also said that God knew multiple events that will happen if you were given to choose between 13 doors to enter into. Just because He knew something in the future, it does not destroy my free will to decide and to choose. What you have known in the future doesn't spell out that the future is "fixed" and inevitable.
That would be even worst if God made humans without the ability to choose to Love Him or Hate Him. That would mean that humans aren't entirely humans but robots programmed to do what God always wanted to do. If God made people like robots, would He ever profit from it? True Love and obedience is freely decided, not forced to. It means also that humans have been given the chance to commit evil as well. But this is the cost of true freedom, the ability to choose to obey or to disobey God. I would rather have the choice to choose good or evil than pre-programmed to do good as always.
It is true nonetheless that God may sometimes reject a prayer from a person. This is either because for selfish reasons- not for proper usage, the person isn't believing what he has prayed or that God knew better to reject the prayer because He knew what will happen if He chose to make the prayers of that person to come true. Consider this, you prayed to God catch an aeroplane quickly for your business appointment and you prayed that you will catch it in time. But then, God rejects it and when you've witnessed that plane you're about to go on to is about to crash down in the ocean- you have seen the point why God decided to reject your prayers of course. If you're asking for forgiveness, you have to believe it deep down in your heart and with your mind or something is a stumbling block cast between you and God- which you have to cast aside and believe with your heart that you need forgiveness from God. You were praying and you're probably doubting that prayer, that is why.
Well my friend, good news! You can now know the true "Higher Power"- which is Jesus Christ- the Word Incarnate and the one who came to pay the price for our sins! Jesus says, 'Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.'. In addition, your "Higher Power" is nothing but a god you have made in your own image and that what we can call as idolatry, my friend. You have set up an image in your own heart- so that is why you can' know everything about your "Higher Power" (if you don't know him, then why claim to know that you don't know him? That's contradictory). Compare your "Higher Power" to my God- does your HP has ever done an ultimate of sacrifice of love? To sacrifice Himself freely and willing so that us can come to Him without any requirements for Him. Does your God loves you and does your God understands your problems and sufferings just as my God understands mine? And one thing, can you know your God to be true and can you trust what He has claimed about earthly so you can believe Him spiritually? My God does not need anything from people save that they offer themselves to Him warts and all and confess and turn your life around. This is my God, in contrast to your God.
My God offers you the chance to Know Him personally and intimately. 'Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.' James 4:8. I exhort to search what He has claimed who He really is and put to the test whether His Word can be trusted or not. if you can prove God created, you can also prove that He has came here to save us for our sins too! Christianity is open for business, the business of skepticism and careful inquiry- this is what my God wants and His followers wants- to inquire and investigate His claims more closely as well about Him personally. You should do it, as I have done it, you won't be disappointed.
We Christian apologists are not here to win arguments and debates, but to win people to Christ and to win their hearts. This is our main purpose why we are here- to provide answers; not to destroy arguments. It would be worthless apologetics if our main aim to win arguments, not people to Christ. We are here to testify and witness that Jesus is the Lord and He has paved the way on how you can come to Him- through the Cross.
Good luck, pal, it's on your shoulder now.
I myself would not be surprised if theism was real, you see I am just uncertain and dare myself to think otherwise of everything. To make an analogy Its like when someone tells you a rumor about someone else, and most of your common sense chooses to ignore it because it cannot be true. Well their is part of you that says, "Maybe this could be true, we will just have to find out". That is essentially is what I am doing. I am looking for the true evidence something that could explain everything. That is why I am agnostic "I don't know if God (pronoun) exists". I am saying that their could be any logical reason to everything that has happened in the whole universe. Anything could be possible, since we the people of earth only believe that one person did all of this, in this specific order, in this set of time. Their are other possibilities, and those are the ones that I am interested in for now until proven otherwise.
Mind me God could be real, their is no doubt that ANYTHING could happen, the question is WHAT happened that caused all of this to be real. We humans are born and taught only what the teachers know, and what they know Could be false. Who was there to document the earth being created, and how would someone know exactly what to write because humans were not created yet. These are just thoughts.
It is now your turn to rebuttal, good luck.
'Maybe this could be true, we will just have to find out". That is essentially is what I am doing. I am looking for the true evidence something that could explain everything. That is why I am agnostic "I don't know if God (pronoun) exists". I am saying that there could be any logical reason to everything that has happened in the whole universe. Anything could be possible, since we the people of earth only believe that One Person did all of this, in this specific order, in this set of time. There are other possibilities, and those are the ones that I am interested in for now until proven otherwise.'.
I appreciate such boldness for open-mindedness and a true skeptic. True skeptics question; but pseudo-skeptics throw tantrums and insults. I fully agree with you that there exists lots and lots of explanations on how can we explain the world around us. Some explanations come and go; even the best ones. But some explanations, like Biblical theism, became obsolete but then rose up to regain its status and refuses to die out. But if you are willing to be open-minded and be honest, I can safely state to you that everything about the world and the cosmos as explained by the Bible is more reasonable and reliable than any other explanations out there. The Bible offers explanation why such that the cosmos is highly structured and detailed as well as complex- because it is made from the hand of a Designer, the Bible too explains a satisfying justification for moral "goodness" that is on God's Character- "Goodness" instead of arbitrary, contingent and subjective moral standards. Scripture too offers ample sayings about why such people believe and why there is such a longing in every people's hearts that neither knowledge nor even riches of this world can fill it up. Finally the Bible explains why there is death and suffering, all of world's problems came from man's choice to obey God or hate God back in the Garden of Eden. Regardless that God knew well that humans too have the capacity to sin if given such ability. For me, the Bible best explains everything about the world, meaning of life, problem of evil and the future (afterlife). I think you will reach to the same conclusion as mine if you put it into same scrutiny as to other world-views and other belief systems as well. Not all people believe God made everything, some attribute to Nature just "doing" it.
'Mind me God could be real, their is no doubt that ANYTHING could happen, the question is WHAT happened that caused all of this to be real. We humans are born and taught only what the teachers know, and what they know Could be false. Who was there to document the earth being created, and how would someone know exactly what to write because humans were not created yet. These are just thoughts.'.
God could be real- yes of course and it goes beyond step than that- that this "God" is the God of the Bible who came to create the world and came to the cross to pay for our sins. Too that the belief in God is not a blind faith, but a rational belief based on inferences and deductive reasoning from what we see in nature and in our conscience and in our epistemology (way of knowing). Let us also not forget what the Bible too explains about this "God" more and what He wants from us. The reason why the Bible can explain this "God" if He did existed (which He does BTW) over other "holy books" because the Bible grounds it beliefs on history and can be placed to historical and rigorous scrutiny where areas other holy books which claims a belief based on history can fall easily unlike the Bible. You need not to see why we have Biblical archaeology and some abundant evidence you might encounter if you search for such of it (I'll try to link if possible on the last round).
It is tempting to just credit, 'Well God did it' as the explanation for everything. But sometimes plausible or feasible explanations for data need not to be pretty explanatory or sophisticated as it required to be. Some questions like, 'How did you kill him by using the gun?' needs just simple solutions such as,'Well, I pulled the trigger and the bullet went flying past through him' instead of invoking sophisticated activations of mechanisms once the trigger was incited that led to the bullet being fired from the gun. In some various scenes, a mechanistic explanation and a "simple" explanation can sometimes complement not contradict e.g. the kettle boiled because of thermal reaction by thermal conduction of heating the water molecules up inside or that your mother turned it on is nonetheless true to both of these explanations.
What we learn from our teachers can be truths, half-truths or outright lies. Some things teachers taught us are factual and objective while others unsubstantiated assumptions and subjective. This is an all too common delicacy when teachers touch upon subjects like comparing evolution and creation and making questionable statements that, 'Science explains everything- not religion' or, 'There is a mountain of evidence for evolution'. That is why it is such a blessing to have skepticism for all areas of life as we try to best understand things around us by questioning and learning (my skepticism of my religion is more of assuring or being sure it is true from time to time- I have found it to be true, tried and sure as many times I do- Psalm 18:30). Moreover, Christianity is a thinking man's religion- Christ and the Apostles invites other people to reason and search it out the claims even for themselves. That is why skepticism has to be understood what its true meaning is and what establishes a "true" skeptic.
I agree with you on this, an eyewitness testimony for a particular incident is better to be relied on than forensics and scientific testing. The reason why eyewitness testimonies are more reliable than the latter is that it could explain the true and definitive interpretation for the data unlike in forensics where theories or explanations about the data can either be falsified, true or makes half of a sense for the evidence. This is probably what is being missed of not being taught in our schools, the reliability of testimonies and the acknowledgement that evidences don't speak for themselves, but have to be nonetheless interpreted no matter what the obvious explanation the data could be pointing out to. Too is that a lack of evidence for something falsifies not the concept that easily- 'absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence'.
If you are trying to find out explanations for how the world came about to be- an eyewitness testimony who was there from the beginning is your best bet. And that's how the Bible got that right- Genesis was an eyewitness testimony account recounted by God during the times when he was yet creating and developing the Earth as He was the one who was there from the beginning. In Biblical theology, we have this doctrine of "inspiration" where God via Holy Spirit moved and inspired men of writing down what He intended for them on their writings without restricting the ability of explicitly demonstrating of the flexibility of the author to showcase human elements or even opinions or greetings to particular people or groups. How Genesis came about to be was through either Supernatural revelation as God told Moses what to write or that Moses complied pre-existing sources telling accounts of Abraham, Creation and the First Two Couple through either interviews with elders who knew about it or written accounts well long before he wrote Genesis or even compiling pagan creation accounts that under through Diving Inspiration he learned to discern which parts and portions of stories told in contemporary pagan creation narratives of what belongs rightly to the Biblical Record and what doesn't belong to the Biblical record at least. Moreover, the Bible can be trusted over other books by demonstrating that the book can be at least trusted on historical and earthly grounds.
I think the main issue here in entirety is,' Which authorities are we to base our thinkings and perceptions upon? '. What we believe earthly may as well lead to how do we view things spiritually. This in its true nature is the entire spirit of the debate- 'Which interpretation does best explain the world around us? The Bible or Man's theories and ideas?' What we sow earthly may we sow on eternity. Because how you base your authority on and how you build upon through your living your life upon it may as well get us on the wrong side of eternity or at in the right side of eternity if we're not too careful. More and more people should be engaged and be informed about the true heart of the Origins controversy and be taught of discerning things scientific and non-scientific claims, assumptions and presuppositions as well interpretations and filter lens on how we see the world around us.
Thank you my friend, for being allowed to participate on this spirited debate, we should keep this up as we intended to be so. Thank you very much for talking with you. I cherish such conversations with you. Nevertheless, I prefer learning from one another a superior virtue than arguing and winning arguments with people. If I do that, my main aim for apologetics would be sidetracked and me being strayed for the true intent why I such practice such discipline (am still a novice). I intend to inform and to learn from others, than argue. In reality, sometimes, apologists don't win people over to Christ by their own strength, God makes it possible for them do so- that is why.
JesseR forfeited this round.
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