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If Satan exists then we as a people should not follow the teachings of the bible.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/27/2008 Category: Religion
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,651 times Debate No: 6348
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
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My position is really simple. If Satan exists ,as a dark contrast to god, who occasionally leads people astray then we as people should not follow the teachings of the bible.

If god would allow Satan to exist then no one should follow the teachings of the bible.

Any takers? =)


The idea that an all-loving God would create evil is troubling for many people, so I thank him for the timeless and worthy discussion.
Let me make it clear what the debate is about. This is not a debate about whether God exists or Satan exists, for that is a given from my opponent. It is not about whether the Bible is good or bad, for my opponent is stuck to defending a specific line of reasoning given by the topic.
Also, my opponent is defending that NO ONE should read the Bible if God created Satan.
As such, I will argue 3 reasons why at least SOME people should read the Bible, even if God created Satan.
First, God did not create hate because He is "bad". God created Satan, that is, he created hate because he needed to create love.
Love is something that can never be forced, even by an omnipotent diety - love requires the presence of hate to have meaning.
My opponents arguments are patriarchal American ideology at work: "God is mighty. Might can do all! Thus, God can create love!". That is the flawed echo of the male dominated society we have grown accustomed to. Sorry, might cannot bring all: though God is mighty, might cannot bring everything.

All the might in the universe cannot create love. Love cannot be forced, even by an omnipotent deity. If love is forced, it is no longer love but something of lesser value: perhaps obedience or loyalty. Love cannot be bought; it can only be given away. Love cannot be compelled, manufactured, or held for ransom. God cannot create love.
Here's the key. The ability to love requires the ability to hate. God allowed us to choose hate so we could love.
Literary theorists, such as Jacques Derrida, agree that we need contrast to understand anything and everything. Though this is not a quote from him (he is nearly impossible to understand), the following is a paraphrase:
--Explain to me the word "man" without reference to "woman". You cannot do it. When I ask you what a "man" is, the only meaningful response is to contrast "man" with "woman". You say things like "a man does not have breasts and has a deeper voice". That is comparative - an explanation that requires comparison. Without any difference between the two, that is, without a woman, there would be no man, because there would be nothing to contrast man with – there would be no concept of gender difference in humans. Without a woman, the man would not exist.
Our understanding of the world is comparative. Without "man" there is no "woman". Without a "day" there is no "night". Without "sorrow" there is no "joy" --
Why did God create hate? Well, to create love. If we had never known a hate, love would be meaningless to us. Without the contrast, how joyful would it be? Love without hate would just be the natural state of things. No one knows the nature of love without the contrast of hate. God created Hate, he created Satan, not out of spite, but to create love.

Thus, my opponents argument (that NO ONE should read the bible since God created Satan) is flawed because creating Satan is necessary to make the hate that is required to create love.
Second, even if God is bad, it does not follow that we should reject His good teachings.
My opponent's argument is a silly one. The nature of the teacher does not effect the nature of the teachings. You can have a bad teacher but have good teachings. (by teacher I mean anyone who teaches moral rules, not school teachers).
For example, say a policeman pulls you over for drunk driving. Drunk driving is wrong, no matter who the police officer is. It doesn't matter if your policeman is an three time ex-felon. Drunk driving is wrong.
The same goes with the Bible. The Bible is a very helpful and inspirational book that has uplifted souls and benefitted lives. It does not matter if God is bad, the Bible is good. I am not Christian, but I have read the Bible because it answers many difficult questions in life. Sure, the Bible might have some scientific and historical inaccuracies, but that is not the point. The Bible answers difficult questions such as: How can I be a good friend? How can I be a good parent? What is success and how do I achieve it? How can I change? What really matters in life? How can I live so that I do not look back with regret? How can I handle the unfair circumstances and bad events of life victoriously?
Even if God is bad, that is not a reason to reject the Bible. The Bible is good anyways.
My opponent might say that the Bible contains a lot of bad things in it, however, that would stray from the initial topic. We are debating a very specific line of argumentation and should become distracted. Also, even if the Bible contains bad things, such as scientific inaccuracies, it does not follow that NO ONE should read the Bible (which is what my opponent is proving). At least some people are capable of ignoring those few errors to see the book for its merits.
Third, even if God is bad and we should reject His good teachings, the Bible is not God's teachings anyway. There is no doubt that the Bible that people read today is greatly influenced by mortal human beings. Even if it was perhaps originally the word of God, the versions we read today are all edited and revised by human beings.
Think about it. How did early churches make copies of texts? Copy machine? Printing press? Nope, the original Bible was more than a thousand years before that. Scribes re-wrote each book by pen and candlelight word for word! The Bible we read to day is hundreds upon hundreds of copies and years later – thousands of years of accidentally missing lines while copying, using incorrect but similar words, and other typos. Add in that in first 100 years after Jesus died each new group of followers had different ideas about the life of Jesus (divine or not? God or man? Both God and man? Women rights? Treatment of Jews? etc. etc.) it is not hard to understand that each group's scribes might alter the text slightly to their advantage or doctrine.

Even if the Bible was orignially the word of God, there is absolutely no possibility that it remains to be so today. So, even if God is "bad" (which is ridiculous), God did not create the Bible anyway, so a rejection of God does not necessitate a rejection of the Bible. As stated in my second point, the Bible has many merits as a helpful and inspirational book.

In sum, Satan's existence does not necessitate a rejection of God for three reasons
1) Satan's creation, interestingly, serves a worthy purpose - hate allows love.
2) Even if God is bad, that does not take away from the merit of His teachings
3) The Bible might not be His teachings anyway, so even if God is bad, the Bible should be read as a very helpful and inspirational book.
Debate Round No. 1


I'd like to begin with a round of thank yous to my opponent for posting a most interesting response to this debate. However I sense some logical fallacies within his arguments so I'm going to begin. My opponent has three arguments, I will cover each in turn.


This is an interesting argument indeed but I have a small litany of arguments in opposition.

1. First off I don't think that Love necessarily needs hate. My opponent says that if hate did not exist then love would just be the natural state of things. That doesn't however make love being that natural state of things a bad thing. For instance I exist right now in my current form, there is no alternative form which I can have, thus my current form is the natural state of things. That does not mean that because there is no alternative that my current form is a bad thing. On the contrary I am content as am because I know nothing better or worse. In much the same if Love only existed we would be content with it because we know nothing better or worse.

2. Secondly however my opponent draws a non sequitur fallacy and a straw man fallacy. For starters he assumes that my premise is that because god made Satan (which he presumes I think is bad) we should not follow the bible. Thus if my argument does not hinge on god being bad what-so-ever, then his argument means absolutely nothing. Thus the claim that -since god needed to make Satan we should still read the bible- is a non sequitur fallacy. Especially considering that my argument has nothing to do with God's reasons for creating Satan.


1. I'm not saying god is bad, in fact I'm not saying anything about god.

2. My opponent interprets the plural word "people" in the resolution to mean all people, thus the plural word "teachings" in the resolution will also be interpreted by myself to mean all teachings. This is only confirmed by the word "the" that is placed in front of teachings, implying the entirety.

3. My opponent once again straw mans my position by saying that I am advocating, "that NO ONE should read the bible since God created Satan". This is not what I am advocating, in fact I think that people SHOULD read the bible, I just do not think that people SHOULD follow the teachings. Thus once again my opponents entire argument as no meaning, I support his position that people should read the bible fully.

4. Satan, as my opponent points out, is intended to mislead people from love into hatred. Satan leads people away from god on a regular bases, or trys. God allows Satan to do this as my opponent points out.

5. Satan has created many different religions in order to accomplish the goal in point 4. Considering the fact that there are so many different contradicting religions out there they cannot all be "of god". The true religion from god would be the truth, thus it is impossible for god to have more than one religion as they all contradict, some in big ways some in small ways. It therefor follows that god possess one religion and Satan has created multiple other religions to lead the people away from the true religion.

6. Satan sends himself to earth far more often than god does. Considering that only one religion is of god, the prophets and god-like embodiments of that religion would never be more than the prophets and god-like embodiments of every other religion combined. Thus Satan sends forms of himself or messages from himself to earth on a far more regular bases than god does.

7. Satan's goal, being to mislead people from the true god, would be best fulfilled by sending someone who appears to be an embodiment of love to earth. This person would of course preach away from the true god and would then be unfortunately martyred thus creating a religion. It would therefor follow that Jesus Christ was actually an embodiment of Satan. This is supported statistically by the fact that Satan sends embodiments to earth more often than god does.

8. The bible, being a bi-product of Jesus, would therefor be of Satan and a purposeful intention to lead the people away from god. This is supported statistically through the fact that Satan posses more religions than god. Furthermore though it is supported logically in the change from the bible between the old testament and the new testament. Where as many things advocated in the old testament are considered to be bad or evil today the new testament strayed away from these things. Thus we can see Satan's first attempt at misleading the people replaced by an attempt where he tried to appear more good.

9. It would therefor and finally follow that FOLLOWING THE TEACHINGS of the bible would probably not be a desirable thing to do.

Yeah, you're right. In fact I postulate that the bible includes the teachings of Satan. Either way though the fact that we should read it remains in tact. Luckily for me I'm not advocating that we don't read it, I think reading it and learning the information is a great thing. I'm advocating we as a people do not follow the teachings of the bible. Thus once again this point doesn't actually link at doesn't actually matter.

Now on to my own arguments....... Which will probably be updated later since I can only think of one right now.

The bible is massive and includes a great deal of teachings. However the resolution is talking about all of the teachings which means even if my opponent somehow disproves everything I said above he is still going to prove that we should follow every teaching.

I think this is a patently bad idea especially when looking at some of the teachings in Leviticus.

Have fun!


I am not sure if my opponents new argument is a joke. If it was not intended to be, then I will still act as if it is. For, if it is not a joke, it's probably offensive.

Regardless, let's analyze my opponents arguments as a whole.
My opponents opening speech had no clear argument presented. He had four sentences. The closest thing to an argument is "If [G]od would allow Satan to exist then no one should follow the teachings of the [B]ible."

My opponents first rebuttal clarifies what he REALLY meant by the topic: "Jesus is an embodiment Satan". Apparently, all of my arguments become "logically fallacious" since they don't really respond to his "real" argument. I had no idea where "Jesus=Satan came from". It is not a "logical fallacy" to fail to predict that.

Alas, my opponent is a tricky devil. (hah, and by that I don't mean Jesus)

To clarify the debate and prevent further advocacy shift. The topic is "If Satan exists then we as a people should not follow the teachings of the bible". The debate is not about the problems of God's creation of evil as my opponent "clarified" in his last speech. It is not about whether the Bible is a good document in the first place, for we are only debating Satan's potential existence in relation to the Bible. What we are debating about, as my opponent clarified, is my opponents new argument: Jesus is supposedly an embodiment of Satan, so the Bible should not be followed.

Let's look in general at the main issues. I will take the issues slightly out of order.

I. My opponents argument, that Jesus is an embodiment of Satan, is an amusing story. Unfortunately, there are too many (often offensive) assumptions.

1-"Satan has created many different religions in order to... mislead people into hatred".

That is probably the most ethnocentric piece of garbage I have ever heard. It is because of closed-minded statements like these that there are religious wars and genocides. To say that followers of faiths like Buddhism and Judaism are, in fact, worshipers of Satan is absolutely unacceptable in academic discussion. Regardless, this claim is totally unprovable and unwarrantable. I do not know how it is possible to speculate the actions of metaphysical being like Satan.

2-"Satan sends himself to earth far more often than god does." ... I ask my opponent, "How do you know this?" Did you text Satan? Email him? ... pull him up on the phone? Did you... poll all the major leaders of the "religions of Satan" (which normal people refer to as Hinduism and Buddhism etc)? There is no way to prove silly things like this. At the least, the judges should prefer my well warranted arguments over his totally unprovable and highly offensive assertions.

3-"Satan's goal, being to mislead people from the true god, would be best fulfilled by sending someone who appears to be an embodiment of love to earth... it would therefor[e] follow that Jesus Christ was actually an embodiment of Satan". Woah! Logical leap! There is no reason why Jesus Christ is the only person who loves the earth. I'd say many other humans have done the same. The Dalai Lama loves the earth. I love the earth too. So does the Green Club president at my school. There is no reason why Jesus is Satan based on this logic. Though he says that it is "probable" since he has created many false religions, that argument is taken out above.

II – My old second argument: It is irrelevant if the creator of the Bible is bad. Even if the creator of the Bible is bad, its teachings have the potential to be good.

While my original argument talked about God, I think it is fair for me to recharacterize my argument to re-suit the (essentially) new topic. Even if I concede my opponents ridiculous assertion of an argument that "Jesus is an embodiment of Satan", my second point proves it totally IRRELEVANT to the debate.

I gave the not-responded-to example of a police officer arresting a man for DWI. Even if the cop is a bad person, that does not mean that the arrested man should refuse to listen to the DWI laws. That's ridiculous. The nature of the teacher does not effect the nature of the teachings. You can have a bad teacher but have good teachings. So, it is relatively irrelevant whether Jesus is an embodiment of Satan – regardless, he produced a good book. The Bible still has the potential to be uplifting and helpful to many people.

My opponents arguments are totally nonresponsive. They merely establish this weird JesuSatan theory. The closest he comes to answering the argument is the mere assertion that reading the Bible is "probably not be... desirable". Unfortunately, that was not a developed argument.

III - I thought my argument about whether hate is necessary for love was pretty good argument. Sadly, it does not disprove the accusation of Jesus's secret devilish ambitions. Regardless, I do not need this argument to win the round, since I had separate disproofs of the topic. The same goes for my old third argument: that the Bible has changed a lot from its origin.

IV. My opponents other possible argument – the Bible is bad.
He mentioned in his last speech that he will argue this. This is a bad and irrelevant argument. The judges should not let him get away with this red herring.
1 – As I previously stated, the debate is "If Satan exists then we as a people should not follow the teachings of the bible." My opponent has to defend a very specific line of reasoning. Saying the Bible is bad is not relevant. The debate is not "Is the Bible good or bad".
2- Even if the Bible has some silly things in it, people can ignore those parts. Though he asserts elsewhere that I have to defend all the teachings of the Bible, that's ridiculous. Our understanding of words in language comes from common usage. His interpretation is certainly not common usage: I don't know a single person who follows ALL the teachings of the Bible (Deuteronomy 21:18-21 says to stone disobedient children to death. No Christians do that).
His reason was that "I argued people meant all people", so plurals mean "everything in existence". That's ridiculous. Plurals do not mean everything. If I say "two crayons", that does not mean "all the crayons in the world". Words are decided by common usage, not by ridiculous arguments made for online debates.

Let's sum up the debate so far
I – My opponents new argument is that "Jesus is an embodiment of Satan" but fails to provide sufficient evidence for this (rather odd) claim. His main proof for the topic is completely and utterly false.
II – Even if Satan had influence over the Bible (which is obviously not true), it is irrelevant. Dear opponent and readers: even if the Bible is a book of fire and brimstone, it wont burn you – I promise.
III – Though I had to scrap some of my old arguments, it was only because of the huge advocacy shift my opponent made in his last speech. Regardless, I have sufficient and separate disproofs from arguments I and II.
IV – He tries to shift the debate from the topic by merely arguing that the Bible is bad, however not only are his reasons for doing so poor, it is also not relevant to the topic.
Debate Round No. 2


Yraelz forfeited this round.


yesikant forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by askbob 8 years ago
Personally I define evil as being the absence of God.
Posted by yesikant 8 years ago
You have a pretty... interesting response too. Never would have predicted it to be honest.
Posted by yesikant 8 years ago
Thanks Yraelz.
Posted by Yraelz 8 years ago
Haha, a very interesting response indeed. =)
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