The Instigator
Con (against)
3 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
0 Points

God exists.

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after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/15/2017 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 541 times Debate No: 105892
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (11)
Votes (1)




The resolution is that God exists. Pro will be arguing that God exists, while Con will be arguing that Pro has not established that God exists.

By accepting this debate, Pro agrees that they have the burden of proof to establish that it is objectively more likely than not that God exists. The rules for assessing this are the standard rules of logic, including the rules of deductive and inductive inference. For example, a deductive argument must be deductively valid and have premises that we have sufficient reason to believe are true, and an inductive argument must establish that the conclusion is the best or only explanation for the evidence cited in the premises.

God for the purposes of this debate shall be defined, by default, as an omnipotent, omniscient, all good person. I take this definition from the first paragraph of the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy entry on "Concepts of God." [1]

If Pro wants to use a definition other than this default definition, they should ask for me to approve it in the comments section before accepting the debate. The following types of definition are unacceptable: (a) Definitions that attempt to win the debate by defining God as something that obviously exists, like "God is love" or "God is the universe." (b) Definitions that attempt to define God as something radically different from the traditional Judeo-Christian God as conceived of by Anselm, Aquinas, Richard Swinburne, or other traditional authors.

Please note that the character maximum for this debate is 5,000 characters per round.



we will examine miracles, near death eperiences NDE and philosophy

the universe either creased itself, came from nothing, or something else caused it. we can rule out coming from nothing because that violates reality as we know it. we should probably rule out self creation because it looks like there was nothing and then there was the big bang with no other most probable cause other than conjecture that somehow the uinverse created itself. this conjecture always doesn't have enough proof to make it a most probable scenario. because things always seem to have a cause, we can deduce more than likely the uinverse has a cause too. i'm not saying what did or didn't come before that first cause, just that it makes most sense to say a cause for the uinverse makes most sense. i'm not claiming to say this definitely prooves God but itis good evidence.


miracles don't happen to atheists, or in other words things that look supernatural with no explanation. they do happen to theists. here is an example:

i post this challenge a lot and nobody can meet the requirement of showing something that would have been called a miracle had it happend to a theist because it looks supernatural and has no explanations.

then you have lots of miracles such as within the catholic church, which they claim without rebutting occur. such as dead bodies that dont decompose despite lacking any embalming, or the sun dancing in front of tens of thosuands of witnesses etc. there are lots more miracles to list that can't or at least aren't explained.

people literally die and come back to tell us of the afterlife and God. it's hard to get much more straightforward than that.

NDEs of atheists
-most atheists meet a divine being and almost all of them come back believing in God. there is som decent arguments that NDEs can be somewhat subjective sometimes, but the fact that athesists dont just see an afterlife without God is significant.
of course NDEs of agnostics and theists involve this stuff too

evidence of the objective nature of NDEs:

out of body experiences
-one peer reviewed study showed someone who died reading numbers on a page while out of body, and that would only be possible otherwise if they guessed the numbers randomly and correctly.
-there is the testimony of probably millions of credible people who have died and told others what they were doing when dead, affirmed by both the dead person and the person observed.

consistency argument
-the near death experience happens to everyone in very similar ways. this even happens to people who have never heard of the phenomenon and to kids. to suggest that there is a story embedded in our brain is far fetched.

-there is nothing that reproduces the NDE and the closest drug that can like ketamine you can draw marked differences between that and the authentic experience. mostly by noting most ketamine and drug induced experiences are random, but NDEs again are consistent.

here is a load of scientific evidence produced from NDEs:
Debate Round No. 1


I'll address Pro's philosophical argument first, then his points about miracles and NDEs.


Pro says that the universe must have had a cause, because it began to exist during the Big Bang. However, the cause of the Big Bang may have been a prior state of the universe. The Big Bang was just a big explosion (or more accurately, an expansion) that happened 14 billion years ago - there's no reason why something like that couldn't have a cause in some prior physical event. Nothing Pro has said rules this out.

Moreover, even if the universe had a cause, nothing Pro has said implies that the cause of the universe had to be God. There is no reason why a being that created the universe would have to be omnipotent, omniscient, perfectly good, or a person. Therefore, none of the divine attributes are demonstrated by this philosophical argument.

Hume on Miracles

Pro tries to argue for the existence of God from miracles, but Hume showed that it is impossible to demonstrate the occurrence of a miracle for all practical purposes. Here is Hume's reasoning:

1. We can determine whether or not to accept a given piece of testimony by considering two things: the credibility of the witness and the intrinsic likelihood of the claim that the witness is making.

2. A law of nature is a maximally strong induction from past experience.

3. A miracle is a claim that contradicts a law of nature.

4. Therefore, a miracle is a claim that contradicts a maximally strong induction from past experience. (from 2 and 3)

5. But induction from past experience is the only means we have of evaluating the intrinsic likelihood of an event.

6. Therefore, miracles have a very low intrinsic likelihood. (from 4 and 5)

7. In practice, the credibility of a witness will never be sufficiently high as to equal or outweigh such a low intrinsic likelihood. There are five reasons for thinking this: (a) miracles are never testified to by sufficiently many people with spotless reputations, excellent educations, and a lot to lose in the event that they are caught lying; (b) people have a tendency to like believing in strange things like miracles and UFOs; (c) miracles usually come from backward nations; (d) the miracles of different religions cancel each other out; and (e) in religious communities, credulity is thought to be a good thing, so they encourage each other to believe more and more in the miracles of their religion.

8. Therefore, in practice, we should always reject miraculous claims. (from 1, 6 and 7)

Mackie on Miracles

J. L. Mackie updated Hume's reasoning as follows:

1. To establish that a miracle occurred, it is necessary to establish both that the event took place and that it violated the laws of nature.

2. Showing that an event violates the laws of nature is a strong reason to think that the event did not occur.

3. Showing that an event occurred is a strong reason to think that it did not violate the laws of nature.

4. Therefore, the atheist will always be able to object to the argument from miracles by arguing either that the event must not have occurred or that the event must not have violated the laws of nature. (Which one we use will depend on the specific alleged miracle under discussion - if the miracle is not well supported, then the former tactic is stronger, and if the miracle is well supported, then the latter tactic is stronger.)

5. Therefore, in practice, the theist will never be able to establish that a miracle occurred.

Mackie notes that this reasoning even applies to miracles which one has witnessed for oneself. The miracle that you have witness might not really have occurred, since you might have misperceived something, been tricked by a magician, or deluded yourself about what you saw over a period of time. Alternatively, the event you witness might have occurred in accordance with the laws of nature after all.

So much for the argument from miracles.

Near Death Experiences

The objections of Hume and Mackie to the argument from miracles also apply to Pro's argument from NDEs. It will always be more likely that someone is lying or mistaken, or that the event was actually a natural occurrence, than that a genuinely supernatural event has occurred.

I would add that NDEs are actually irrelevant to the existence of God. There is no logical connection between these experiences and the alleged existence of an omnipotent, omniscient, and perfectly good person.


no time, i concede
Debate Round No. 2


Okay, good debate. You made some interesting arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
11 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Ockham 2 months ago
thelogicalumbrella, done.
Posted by Soulman4764 3 months ago
some view this topic as a way to push SELF-issues, others will say Blind Faith, while others will just plainly object and that it's purely religious claptrap. What I personally know myself. 1) Religion does not exist (as religion does not exist in the Hebrew tongue) it's just a man-made concept. 2) when you look at everything around you, you certainly cannot say that nothing created all that we see (as nothing cannot create something). 3) This is the reason for a Creator of all things living to exist and why people should accept that the possibility that atoms came into existence by a random occurrence, which is like saying Darwin's theory of selective evolution is real (which has been proven wrong anyway). And that life is part of Creation. Just like the Big Bang was the Root of Creation. everything after that is the Branches of Creation.
Posted by thelogicalumbrella 3 months ago
Goldberg123, it's certainly true that debating the existence of God can easily turn into a debate about all sorts of other related issues: miracles, epistemology, free will, and so on. It seems like you're saying that it would be best to move on from classical deductive arguments, which aim to prove God's existence with absolute certainty to inductive ones that aim that merely aim to show it is more likely than not that God exists.

By the way Ockham, I'm also still looking forward to a debate if you're interested.
Posted by Ockham 3 months ago
Goldberg123, I might challenge you after this is over.
Posted by Ockham 3 months ago
TylerLamb, one position open to the atheist is that the universe has existed going back forever, with no beginning. The theist must rule out this possibility for the cosmological argument to work.
Posted by Goldberg123 3 months ago
I would like to have a debate with you Ockham
Posted by Goldberg123 3 months ago
Of course this debate will just continue to grow and grow and grow and grow, I mean seriously a proof for such rigid claim requires rigid proof for its utterance of the claim, now what I'm concerned is that, I do think that this "rigid proof for existence" (existence of God) is very very hard to manifest (in terms of physical proof) and on behalf of the two debaters, I see no impeccable reason they just have reallocate the reasoning of the former theologians and philosophers but the problem I see in Hume's understanding of "miracles" fades away from the grounds of "common knowledge". Judging by the record this application (of Hume) against miracles is not merely logical to be conceded. The problem here is that Humean application as well as Mackiean application are trapped in grounds of some general logical conventions concerning the topic "existence". They both attacked "miracles" to disprove the existence of God, thus they are trapped on the problem of the presence of miracles not of the presence of existence of the topic.
Posted by TylerLamb 3 months ago
Ockham, could you clarify what you mean by "the cause of the Big Bang may have been a prior state of the universe."? Linate's contention seemed to be that the universe must have a creator, and you responded that the universe could have been created by a previous universe. Were that the case, wouldn't that universe also need a creator? I'm trying to understand what you say created the universe if not a creator. Thanks in advance.
Posted by Chunkitron 3 months ago
What are you planning to achieve with this debate? Of course, there is no physical way to prove God exists as 2 Corinthians 5:7 states that "(Christians) live by faith and not by sight." Now I'm not going to go into the scientific details stating that it would be mathematically impossible for the universe to be created by chance, I'm just saying that you are going to accomplish nothing in this debate. If there was a solution, it would have been revealed by now.
Posted by Ockham 3 months ago
thelogicalumbrella, I'd be glad to debate you. I've debated atheists who argued for theism before. I might challenge you after this debate is over.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by PowerPikachu21 2 months ago
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: "no time, i concede" - Pro, round 2. Arguments to Con by default.