The Instigator
Pro (for)
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The Contender
Con (against)
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The Christian God Cannot be Proven

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/25/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 544 times Debate No: 35022
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (1)




EDIT- Rational_Thinker9119 declined my debate, so now it's an open challenge.

= Foreword =
After reading over this debate [], and speaking with Pro privately on the matter, I've decided that I am wholly unsatisfied with how said debate turned out. As such I hereby challenge my opponent to debate me on this same resolution with a clearer framework in mind.

There are two judging paradigms that this debate may operate under. I shall allow my opponent to choose which paradigm is used, however only one may be used. If my opponent does not choose a paradigm then we shall default to the first.

To clarify once more, there may be no combination of these paradigms, no exclusion of necessary elements of these paradigms and no choice of any other unmentioned paradigm to weigh this debate under. Con must choose one or the other. If there is a lack of understanding to these paradigms Con should seek clarity in the comments before posting his choice in round one.

The two paradigms are as follows,

1. Classical Academic Debate-
Primary BOP rests on the Pro, and Con is given presumption in the event that neither side makes a compelling argument. All voters must be Tabula Rasa and arguments not made by the debaters within the scope of the round should not be considered in the judging process.

Pro will be entitled to provide the definitions and defining framework the round will operate under and Con must conform to said definitions and framework. These definitions and framework will be made at the top of round 2.

2. Public Debate-
Both debaters share a perfectly equal BOP and voters will vote based on who's argument is more compelling. No jargon is allowed, and semantic debates are absolutely out of the question.

This paradigm is aimed at doing away with the meta-debate and focusing solely on on-case clash. if any meta-debate is had under this paradigm, all arguments should be completely discounted.

= Rules =
1. Con may not post anything in the first round aside from his choice of a round paradigm.

2. All arguments must be posted in round. This includes source evidence and anything else deemed necessary for the round.

3. Pro, as the instigator, maintains the right to add rules specific to Con's chosen paradigm at the top of next round.


Thank you to Pro for proposing this interesting debate topic.

The paradigm for this debate shall be the Classical Academic Debate, and as stated the BoP rests on Pro.

For this debate, what that means is that I (Con) do not need to prove the converse of the Resolution, rather I need only to show that Pro did not satisfy his burden of proof. More specifically, I need only show that Pro does not establish that "The Christian God Cannot be Proven" and do not need to prove the Christian God, nor do I need to show that he can be proven.

As Pro bears the burden of proof, I shall allow him to make his opening argument.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1


= Framework =
1. Con did not post only his choice of a debate paradigm in the first round, but also an analysis of what the framework he has chosen means. There are two impacts; a. that he must be docked conduct as this is a direct violation of the rules set in the opening round. b. is that this analysis must be rejected outright as it violates my right as the instigator to frame the round in the way that I want to. I already wrote an analysis of the burdens opponent and I in this debate, and invited inquiry in the comments. Further analysis is not only unnecessary, but abusive.

2. As all arguments in this debate operate a Tabula Rasa lens, only the arguments offered in this round are acceptable as a grounds of judging this debate under. What this means is that I do not need to warrant every possible argument on the the impossibility of proving God, only the arguments which arise in this debate.

3. As the contender of the resolution my opponent holds the burden of clash. This may include needing to prove the inverse of the resolution true, however that burden is not inherent in accepting the role as the contender.

= On-Case =
1. Proof-
Princeton defines 'proof' as 'any factual evidence that helps to establish the truth of something'. Therefore in order for something to be considered a proof, it must be both objective, factual and falsifiable. The impact here is that theological, ideological and/or philosophical explanations for the God's reality do not fall within the scope of an acceptable proof.

Leading arguments for the reality of God such as the Kalam Cosmological argument, the Watchmaker analogy and Pascal's Wager are invalid as 'proof' as they operate theoretically, instead of empirically. These arguments may serve as the basis for one's belief in the Christian God, however they are not proof. In the same way I may believe that cars need gas to run because my mom so, her statement is not proof unto itself.

Just because something is persuasive and causes one to believe, does not mean that it is proof.

2. Truth without proof-
The question of this debate isn't about whether or not God is real, it's whether or not he can be proven. If God is real, then he's real and not logic or deductive reasoning will be able to change that. At the same time, we need to be careful not to mistake logic and personal conviction for empirical evidence.

Gravity is accepted as a law of nature, but realistically there is no proof that the force we call 'gravity' really exists. There is no way to touch, taste, see, hear or feel gravity. We can only view and experience the effects of gravity. If I throw a ball into the air, it doesn't fall down because of gravity, but because of the effects of gravity.

Back to the car analogy, it may be true that cars need gas to run, but my word isn't proof of this necessity. I may even come to the conclusion that cars need gas based on logical observation, however that still isn't proof.

Truth can exist and be accepted without objective proof.

3. Faith-
The Christian God can only be accepted on faith, there is no evidence for the reality of God because God does not operate on an empirical level. If the Christian God is real, he's real. If he's not, he's not. No amount of argumentation or debate will change that basic fact.

Hebrews 11:1 "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen."

That said, because God will exist either way, proof is irrelevant. If at the end of the road we all stand in judgement before the creator of the universe, his existence doesn't validify any logical argument for the existence of God. These explanations may remain persuasive, and their conclusion's may be true, but they are not proof because they are neither objective or falsifiable.

If I say that there are sodas in the refrigerator, you can check to see to see if that's true or false. If I say God is real, you can only check if it's true.

Proof for God's Existence is not falsifiable.


I would like to begin by thanking my opponent for his thoughtful opening argument, and to apologize for what he sees as a breach of conduct. I certainly did not intend any sort of analysis as to what it means to not bear burden of proof, I was simply stating the facts of what burden of proof is.

Without spending too much time quarling over the terms of the debate, I would like to note that burden of clash in no way requires me to prove the inverse of the resolution. Burden of clash simply means that I am required to interact with my opponent's argument, rather than simply wax eloquent about another subject. My opponent bears the same burden, in addition to his burden to prove the resolution. If my opponent does not fulfill his burden, he loses the debate.

==On Case==
My opponent has provided a definition of "proof" that apparently comes from "Princeton." His lack of citation is likely an oversight, however it makes it impossible to verify the veracity of the definition. However, I will accept that definition provided my opponent provides a citation. However, in addition to the definition my opponent provides he adds that something must be "objective, factual, and falsifiable." What he does not add is any support of this criteria. The "Princeton" definition does not include this, nor does any other dictionary definition I was able to find. Simply put, my opponent's definition does not hold water since it is simply a bald definition with no support.

Not only does his definition lack support, it is contradictory to common sense. There are many different kinds of proofs. In a court of law, proof need not be falsifiable, it need only eliminate the shadow of doubt. In math we can demonstrate by proof that certain mathematics principles exist.

In fact, according to Princeton's definition, it need only be factual evidence that helps to establish the truth of something.

My opponent's entire argument rests on undercutting the arguments for God by means of semantic exclusion. This is a worthy tactic, however my opponent has not provided any support for the addition to the definition provided by Princeton.

My opponent then argues for "Truth without proof." He argues that "Gravity is accepted as a law of nature, but realistically there is no proof that the force we call 'gravity' really exists." He seems then to limit proof to the basic five senses. What boggles the mind however, is that immediately after saying that we cannot feel gravity he then says that we can experience the effect of gravity. Is that not the same thing? He says that a ball does not fall because of Gravity, but because of the effects of gravity. Is the effect of gravity not the force called gravity exerting an influence on an object?

This leads us to the final question that must be answered. Do the proofs that my opponent claims are beyond the definition my opponent presented? The answer of course is "Absolutely not." My opponent urges us to recognize that "we need to be careful not to mistake logic and personal conviction for empirical evidence." He is absolutely right that we should not mistake logic for empirical evidence. However, where he is wrong is that empirical evidence is not the only type of proof that there is.

Finally, a question I would like you as the reader to answer is this: Is my opponent's argument "proof" in the definition that he provides (I.E. it must be empirical), or is it a logical proof. If it is a logical proof, then my opponent has constructed a self defeating argument, as he cannot possibly fulfill the burden of proof by providing something that does not constitute proof. As he has not fulfilled his burden of proof, he must be declared the loser.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 2


Unfortunately I need to forfeit.
I don't have a reliable internet connection at the moment and don't want to give sub-par responses.

While I definitely have a response to my opponent's arguments I don't have the means to respond at the present time.


ReformedArsenal forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


Well then.

Um I guess vote for whoever.


My apologies for missing round 3. I have been traveling and the time got away from me.

To close the debate, please consider the following questions.

1) Did pro fulfill his burden of proof? The answer is a resounding no. Pro's entire argument rests on the fact that logical arguments cannot constitute proof. Either his argument is successful and is therefore not submissible as proof, or it is unscuessful and things like the Kalam Cosmological Argument can constitute proof. Either way, he has not fulfilled his burden tor prove that the Christian God cannot be Proven.
2) Did pro fulfill his burden of clash? Absolutely not. He has not interacted with my argument or responses in any way and therefore they stand unchallenged.

As Pro has failed to fulfill either of his obligations, and formally forfeited the debate, please vote for Con. Thank you.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Kind of torn. Pro attempted to concede, then con forfeited (even returning after, does not change the ill nature of it)...