The Instigator
deputy
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Nur-Ab-Sal
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

The Biblical God does not exist

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Nur-Ab-Sal
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/2/2011 Category: Religion
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 891 times Debate No: 19641
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (5)
Votes (1)

 

deputy

Pro

I will take the burden of proof for this debate. My opponent is free to define any terms I failed to.

Definitions:

Biblical God: The Monotheistic God as described in the old or new testament.
Origins: The "location" of God before the existence of time.

Argument:

1. The biblical God cannot have origins (or lack thereof) inside space-time
2. The biblical God cannot have origins (or lack thereof) outside space-time
3. Therefore the biblical God cannot exist.

proving premise 1.
The bible clearly states in Hebrews 7:3 that God is without beginning and without end, this proves that the biblical God must be time-independent. Since the universe is made of a fabric of space-time, they are inseparable. Therefore God must be both time-independent and space-independent. This proves that God's origins (or lack thereof) could not have been within space and time.

Proving premise 2.
The bible clearly demonstrates that God makes decisions. He made the decision to create the earth, animals, and humans. Decision-making, however, requires distinct temporal states. That means that a time-independent God could not have made any decisions as he would not have distinct temporal states. This concludes that a decision-making god cannot have origins outside space and time, and therefore the biblical God cannot have origins outside space and time.

Conclusion (3.) If God cannot have origins inside space and time, or outside space and time, than God cannot have an origin, and therefore cannot exist.
Nur-Ab-Sal

Con

I thank my opponent for his debate. Since he has the Burden of Proof, I only have to refute his arguments. We are debating "The Biblical God does not exist," therefore he must show that God doesn't exist, not that I have to show that God does exist. That's just for clarification for readers and voters.

Rebuttal
My opponent uses the following syllogism for his argument:

1. The biblical God cannot have origins (or lack thereof) inside space-time
2. The biblical God cannot have origins (or lack thereof) outside space-time
3. Therefore the biblical God cannot exist.

I will show how this argument is false.

Omnipotence
God is described in the Bible as all-powerful, i.e., omnipotent.[1] If the God described in the Bible exists, then he must be omnipotent. If this is true, then you must accept the fact that God operates outside a boundary such as human logic. If he operates outside logic, we can assume that not only can God operate outside space-time, but that he does not need a cause, as in a phrase that we humans have created, "cause and effect." Using logic outside the space-time of our finite universe is inherently erroneous; for all we know, our universe could be the only one operating on logic. In syllogism form:

1. God operates outside of logic.
2. Cause and effect is logic.
3. Therefore, God operates outside cause and effect.

And also,

1. Our Universe operates on logic.
2. God does not operate on logic.
3. Therefore, God operates outside our Universe.

Your argument of "This proves that God's origins (or lack thereof) could not have been within space and time" is therefore false, because nothing outside of space and time is logical in regards to our Universe.

Decisions
When God operates inside of our Universe, to meddle with human matters, of course he will use the logic inside of our own Universe. It's rather simple, really, an omnipotent being could operate outside of logic and inside logic as he wishes, even when he intervenes in human affairs. This does not prove he is temporally dependent, it only shows that he can make decisions inside of our Universe's logic.

Interpretation
There is actually an entire branch of study dealing with my next argument; it's called hermeneutics. There are several different methods of interpreting the Bible.[2] Citing Hebrews 7:3, and using it as "God is temporally dependent" is misleading. For example, Revelations 22:13 states "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End." Perhaps it is not that God is without beginning and end, but perhaps he is the beginning and the end, as this passage states. Do not view this as a contradition, perhaps Hebrews 7:3 is stating he is temporally independent, "without beginning and end," and perhaps Revelations 22:13 is discussing God outside our universe, stating God is "the beginning and end" of our own, temporally-dependent, Universe. Again, this is all about interpretation; we cannot, however, rely on one narrow interpretation.

Conclusion
I have shown my opponent's simple syllogism to be deeply incorrect. God is outside of our Universe, and therefore can be without cause. When meddling in Earthly matters, as an all-powerful being, he is able to make decisions in this Universe, with logic if he chooses. And lastly, interpretations can be skewed many ways, therefore, we may never understand the Bible, or, for that matter, a truly omnipotent being.

Sources
1. Wills, John Randolph, et al. The Teachings of the Church Fathers. pp. 125-126.
2. Hiesberger, Jean Marie. The Catholic Bible, Personal Study Edition: New American Bible. p. 1812.
Debate Round No. 1
deputy

Pro

At my opponents request the following statement

"Your argument of "This proves that God's origins (or lack thereof) could not have been within space and time" is therefore false, because nothing outside of space and time is logical in regards to our Universe."

should be corrected to

"This concludes that a decision-making god cannot have origins outside space and time." is therefore false, because nothing outside of space and time is logical in regards to our Universe."

For the sake of my next argument I would like to define 2 new terms
Absolute omnipotence: The ability to do absolutely anything. No exceptions
Non-absolute omnipotence. The ability to do absolutely anything within reason

As I will demonstrate shortly Absolute Omnipotence is impossible.
Omnipotence:

God cannot be absolutely omnipotent. In order for God to exist some set of rules must govern his existence. These rules would actually be necessary to define him as omnipotent in the first place.

Temporal states being necessary for decision making is not a logic of the universe, but is in fact something inherent of existence itself, and therefore God can't get around it just by claiming omnipotence. Absolute omnipotence itself would solve the problem, but is impossible due to inherent paradoxes. Could God create a stone so heavy he could not lift? Obviously Such a paradox will inevitably result in finding something that God cannot do. This means God adheres to at least some of our logic and cannot be absolutely omnipotent.

By this logic the rules and laws of our universe must adhere to the same rules and laws that God does. Consider a set A with subset b. Subset b must adhere to the rules of set A.

Decisions:

A temporal-independent God who brought the universe into existence would have had to make decisions in order for such universal logic and temporal states were available. In other words God would have had to decide to create the temporal states in order to use them for decision making.

Interpretation:

Interpretation can be difficult, however I think it is pretty easy to see that God must exist independent of time. God is described both as THE beginning and as eternal. Time had a beginning, meaning unless God had a beginning he must be independent of time and have created time to begin with.

Conclusion:
Absolute omnipotence is an illogical rebuttal, and the universe must adhere to the same laws that God adheres to. Interpretation is my opponent's only valid rebuttal, however the assumption that God created time and exists independent of it can be shown to be a fairly safe assumption. It is difficult for our finite minds trapped in this universe to comprehend anything transcending it, however "we simply can't understand" is not a valid argument in this debate, we must simply work with what we have and know.

I thank my opponent for participating in this debate, I look forward to the rest of it.
Nur-Ab-Sal

Con

I thank my opponent for his constructive and persuasive argument.

Rebuttal

Absolute Omnipotence
I agree to my opponent's definitions.

My opponent states: "In order for God to exist some set of rules must govern his existence. These rules would actually be necessary to define him as omnipotent in the first place." This is actually quite the opposite of the Biblical God. The Biblical God is outside space and time, outside of the workings of our Universe, outside the logic that we humans know and love. The Biblical God is the opposite, he does not have rules to govern his existence, because rules would hinder his omnipotence. Note my cause and effect syllogism. Cause and effect is completely logical in our Universe as it makes complete sense. However, if we consider an entity or being (if there is one) outside of the Universe, this being would not operate by cause and effect, because he does not necessarily operate by logic. Natural laws are only relative to our Universe, and we simply cannot assert they apply anywhere outside of it. Another syllogism:

1. Physical laws determine the way our Universe acts, and are thus logical in nature.
2. God is outside of the Universe and logic.
3. Therefore, God is outside physical laws.

Decisions
My opponent states "Temporal states being necessary for decision making is not a logic of the universe, but is in fact something inherent of existence itself, and therefore God can't get around it just by claiming omnipotence." This is once again untrue. A truly omnipotent being does not operate by the same logic that you and I operate by, so we cannot simply assign attributes to him through logical reasoning. When considering an omnipotent being, we must understand that he can do contradictory things at the same time, or can do something that is logically or physically impossible (such as change a universal constant such as π or e). An omnipotent being is all-powerful, and it would be contradictory of us to begin placing limits on this power.

Ah, the stone paradox. My opponent states, "Absolute omnipotence itself would solve the problem, but is impossible due to inherent paradoxes." He basically says, absolute omnipotence would allow God to operate outside of logic, but it is impossible due to paradoxes that I have derived through logic. Because God is an entity outside of logic, he can lift an unliftable stone -- he can do two contradictory things at once. A contradiction of logic is what a paradox is, and as I have already shown that God is outside of logic, it is safe to say he is outside paradoxes.

My opponent asserts: "By this logic the rules and laws of our universe must adhere to the same rules and laws that God does." Please note the "by this logic." My opponent has already conceded that "Absolute omnipotence would solve the problem," yet he has used a logical paradox to attempt to disprove this absolute omnipotence. This may sound like a cop-out, but there is no way I can stress just how wide omnipotence can go.

Decisions 2
My opponent, continuing the Decisions discussion, again states: "In other words God would have had to decide to create the temporal states in order to use them for decision making." He is once again asserting that there is a limit to God's omnipotence, which contradicts the word itself. An omnipotent God does not have limits, he can decide temporally even without time!

Interpretation
My opponent boldly states, "I think it is pretty easy to see that God must exist independent of time." I agree. An omnipotent being does not depend on time for his decisions, but in omnipotence, one can still make temporal decisions without time. God may have been stated as "THE beginning," but it does not state that that is "HIS beginning." THE beginning of the Universe, perhaps. THE beginning of matter, energy, space, and time, perhaps. But it does not state that is THE beginning of his existence, because earlier it states that God is without beginning. THE beginning of the Universe was God, because God created the Universe (according to the Bible, of course).

Conclusion
"Absolute omnipotence is an illogical rebuttal, and the universe must adhere to the same laws that God adheres to." Absolute omnipotence is a logical rebuttal, because it covers every assertion that God cannot do something; they are all within logic! My opponent states, "It is difficult for our finite minds trapped in this universe to comprehend anything transcending it," and this is exactly my point. "We simply can't understand" is not my argument (I'm not going to call straw man on my opponent, however), absolute omnipotence is.
My opponent states we must work with what we have and what we know. What we know about the Biblical God is through Scripture, and Scripture tells us God is omnipotent.

I look forward to my opponent's response!

Debate Round No. 2
deputy

Pro

deputy forfeited this round.
Nur-Ab-Sal

Con

Arguments extended.
Debate Round No. 3
deputy

Pro

deputy forfeited this round.
Nur-Ab-Sal

Con

Arguments extended, although I do not think Pro is going to finish the debate.
Debate Round No. 4
deputy

Pro

deputy forfeited this round.
Nur-Ab-Sal

Con

My opponent has forfeited the last few rounds and did not respond to my arguments.

Thank you for the debate.
Debate Round No. 5
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by Nur-Ab-Sal 5 years ago
Nur-Ab-Sal
Thanks. I really appreciate it; there are some people on this site who wouldn't do that.
Posted by deputy 5 years ago
deputy
That's no problem terminology can get a little complex and mistakes are easy to make. I wouldn't be surprised if I haven't made mistakes of my own. Unfortunately I didn't read your comment before posting my next argument, so I was only able to correct your mistake in section "omnipotence" so you'll have to correct it in your next argument.
Posted by Nur-Ab-Sal 5 years ago
Nur-Ab-Sal
Ugh. I also said "Citing Hebrews 7:3 and using it as 'temporally dependent'..." I meant to say "using it as temporally independent. I'm very sorry for these mistakes, I would really appreciate it if you post these two at the top of your next argument, and counter off those. It was an honest mistake.
Posted by Nur-Ab-Sal 5 years ago
Nur-Ab-Sal
In my section, "Omnipotence," where I quote the statement that I call false in the last sentence, I meant to quote "This concludes that a decision-making god cannot have origins outside space and time." Can you please state this error in the beginning of your next argument? Thanks.
Posted by Nur-Ab-Sal 5 years ago
Nur-Ab-Sal
I look forward to debating with you. I will post my argument in a while.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by WriterSelbe 4 years ago
WriterSelbe
deputyNur-Ab-SalTied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Obvious winner.