The Instigator
Ockham
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
harrytruman
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

God exists.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/5/2016 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 6 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 451 times Debate No: 92231
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (17)
Votes (0)

 

Ockham

Con

The resolution is that God exists. In my first post, I will discuss some issues relating to definitions and then defend the burden of proof principle.

Part 1: Definitions

The resolution has two terms, "God" and "exists."

My opponent has the privilege of defining the term "God," since he is the one defending the claim that God exists. However, my opponent must not attempt to win the debate by appealing to a radically unorthodox definition. For example, he cannot define God as love, or as the universe. If my opponent attempts this, or anything like it, he forfeits the debate.

That said, my opponent may appeal to a definition of God that is different from the definition traditional Christians use. He may argue for the existence of a deistic God that does not intervene in the universe, or a God that is omnipotent and omniscient but not all loving. My point above is only to rule out a definition that a reasonable person would view as trickery, given the resolution.

The second term in the resolution is "exists," which everyone should be able to understand. Examples of things that exist are the chair I'm sitting on, the United States, Vladimir Putin, etc. The resolution simply asserts this status for God, given some sensible definition of God.

Part 2: The Burden of Proof

I argue that this debate should be evaluated according to a principle of logic called the burden of proof principle, which asserts that every claim must be supported by adequate evidence or reasoning. Conversely, if a claim isn't supported by evidence, then we must reject it.The burden of proof principle follows from the fact that we have limited time and energy to investigate a claim.

Since our resources are limited, we need to focus our efforts on the claims that are the most important and promising. If a claim is just arbitrarily asserted without any evidence or reasoning in favor of it, the rational response to it is to ignore it, go on with our business, and continue to base our reasoning and actions on the conclusions that hold up best under rational analysis.

Examples of the burden of proof principle at work are plentiful in everyday life and in science. If a used car salesman claims that a car runs well, we don't just take his word for it, we want to take the car for a drive. If a scientist makes a scientific assertion to his colleagues, he is expected to provide reasoning and evidence in its favor.

Claims that aren't supported by evidence and reasoning are disregarded.We can also see the burden of proof principle at work in our rejection of concepts like unicorns, leprechauns, and other mythical creatures. Virtually no one believes in these entities, because there is no evidence in their favor. Believing in them would be ridiculous and harmful to our lives, and spending time trying to disprove their existence would be a waste of time and energy. We just reject the claims as if they had never been put forward.

The burden of proof principle is clearly sound, then, which means that if there is no evidence or reasoning supporting the claim that God exists, we should reject the claim. I invite my opponent to put forward evidence or reasoning in support of God's existence in his Round 1 speech.

Conclusion

In this post, I did two things.

1. I gave my opponent the privilege of defining the term "God," within reasonable limits.

2. I defended the burden of proof principle and explained how it applies to the issue at hand.

I look forward to my opponent's attempt to address both of these issues in his response.
harrytruman

Pro

Bs"d
I accept your debate and will now define G-d for this debate, G-d will be defined as the G-d of the Torah, the one which set the Israelites free, created the Universe etc. There is a lot of proof for G-d but most atheists would reject it on no grounds whatsoever, so I will need my opponent to just consider the facts then make a decision rather than deciding there is no proof.

Let me first start off with the most basic proof that just any Jew will know and seems to be impossible to refute; there were 3 million Jews around My. Sinai when G-d gave Moses the Torah. In round 2 I will get more in depth but so think I did a good job with my introductory argument.
Debate Round No. 1
Ockham

Con

My opponent has defined God as the God of the Torah, which seems to include God's performing actions described in the Old Testament like creating the universe and revealing himself to the Israelites. Therefore, the debate comes down to whether the Torah is a reliable source of information.

The burden of proof for this claim rests on my opponent, as I discussed in Round 1, and which my opponent did not challenge.

The two prerequisites for accepting any claim on testimony are:

1. That the person testifying be in a position to know the facts they are testifying to.
2. That the person have motives consistent with accurately stating whether the facts in question hold.

If we do not know both of these things about a source, or have reason to doubt them in a given case, then we cannot regard the source as reliable.

So, I invite my opponent to establish that the Torah meets these two criteria.
harrytruman

Pro

The Torah does fit these criteria, every Jew is required to study their Torah, and so were the Exodus Jews, thus they do know what facts they are testifying to, I.e. knowing what they claim.

The next criteria the Torah also fits, that the Jews who witnessed G-d giving Moses the Torah have no other motives for claiming this. If Jews wrote the Torah, and not G-d, they why would the Torah give them all these laws? When people from a religion themselves, they devise it to appease their lifestyles or to make themselves feel good about themselves, or to justify behavior which otherwise would be banned.

We find this in all other religions, the law of the Quran was made to justify beating your wife and raping your wife as well as murdering people and owning sex slaves, we find that their prophet did all these things and said it was OK. The Non-Testament sets up that you can be forgiven of all your sins just on account of being a Christian.

As we can see, all false religions were invented to fit people's ideals, Judaism does not fit this pattern, why on earth would Moses tell the Jews to not eat bacon? That wouldn't benefit him, he might get protesters and not be liked as much, so he has no personal or selfish reason to say he is a prophet, no conflict of interests, no other motive. He only got disobeyed and had to deal with ungrateful Jews to show for his revelation.

Muhammad and Jesus on the other hand would have other reasons for their teachings, Muhammad benefited from every revelation he had from G-d, he got to own sex slaves, beat his wife, steal plunder, etc. Jesus got to be worshiped as G-d, no prophet did this, no Jewish prophet gave reservations which aleays would benefit him, thus their motives are confirmed.
Debate Round No. 2
Ockham

Con

As I said in the previous round, the two prerequisites for accepting any claim on testimony are:

1. That the person testifying be in a position to know the facts they are testifying to.
2. That the person have motives consistent with accurately stating whether the facts in question hold.

Since my opponent has the burden of proof in this debate, and his case rests on the credibility of the Torah, I invited my opponent to establish that the Torah meets these two criteria.

My opponent's justification for saying that the authors of the Torah meet criterion 1 is that "every Jew is required to study their Torah, and so were the Exodus Jews." However, this does not establish that the authors of the Torah were in a position to know the facts they were testifying to, since no matter how many people study a book, that doesn't establish that what it says is true.

This argument is like a Scientologist arguing that L. Ron Hubbard was in a position to know that what he says in Dianetics is true because every Scientologist is required to study Dianetics. There is no logical connection between the fact that a group of people study a book and whether or not the book's claims are true.

My opponent's justification for saying that the authors of the Torah meet criterion 2 is that the Jews wouldn't give themselves all of the laws in the Torah if they were making it up themselves. But plenty of societies across the world have come up with incredibly restrictive laws, like the Code of Hammurabi. The Code of Hammurabi is arguably even more restrictive than the Biblical code, since it has laws like "If any one take a male or female slave of the court, or a male or female slave of a freed man, outside the city gates, he shall be put to death." [1]

My opponent also claims that Moses would have no ulterior motives for writing the Torah, but how do we know that Moses even existed, let alone wrote the Torah? The fact that an ancient book claims he existed isn't particularly good evidence for his existence. Many historians favor the Documentary Hypothesis, which says that the Torah was assembled over time from a variety of different writings. [2]

Since my opponent has failed to establish that the Torah meets criteria 1 and 2, he has failed to meet his burden of proof, so we should negate the resolution. Thank you.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org...
harrytruman

Pro

1. Really? You say that the Torah has to fit both criteria to be true, I established it fits the first, and you say that it isn't sufficient proof. YES! That's why I proved #2 aalso! You said that the people who made the claim have to know what they are claiming, Jews claim this, do they know what they are claiming to? YES! I proved this, also, yes your analogy is correct, if L. Ron Hubbard studied Dianetics, he is in a position to know what his claims were in regards to dianetics.


2. Actualy, the Code of Hammurabi was introdced by a king, not the people themselves, thus proving my point, people wouldn't pass a law themselves that would make life harder for them. And no king was in Israel until ~1050 B.C.E., so no one is going to force the jews to believe this code. QAlso, there is a LOT of proof of Moses, Atheists just tried saying there wasn't because they were looking through 145 B.C.E., while he was actualy around 2450 BC.E.
http://www.biblicalchronologist.org...;
Debate Round No. 3
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Jonanator 6 months ago
Jonanator
emphasis on brief. i wasnt trying 2. I understand the confusion 2 it. srry.
Posted by Heirio 6 months ago
Heirio
Of course I read it.
Still doubting its validity.
You didn't back the point up with anything.
Posted by Jonanator 6 months ago
Jonanator
i was making a brief point. Brief. any of you actually read it?
Posted by Heirio 6 months ago
Heirio
" Remember how much he predicted that came true? and it's coming true. "

lolwat
Posted by Jonanator 6 months ago
Jonanator
*sigh* nvm
Posted by canis 6 months ago
canis
So you have no point about anything....So I just start where i Left....
Hi. Any of the 10000000 gods existence would be a matter of existence. Not a matter of words and books, thoughts and guessing..Books and Words can make anything "exist"..That is how we got Santa.
Posted by Jonanator 6 months ago
Jonanator
I do and you realize it. Writers have a significantly higher chance of having a significantly higher iq than the average joe,and there's a significantly higher chance you're an average joe rather than you're not. And remember what happened in the book? Remember how much he predicted that came true? and it's coming true. So be quiet. I can go into this alot more,but i dont wanna.
Posted by canis 6 months ago
canis
You have no point...
Posted by Jonanator 6 months ago
Jonanator
You ever read Fahrenheit 451?
Posted by canis 6 months ago
canis
Hi. Any of the 10000000 gods existence would be a matter of existence. Not a matter of words and books, thoughts and guessing..Books and Words can make anything "exist"..That is how we got Santa.
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