The Instigator
Cerebral_Narcissist
Pro (for)
Winning
16 Points
The Contender
Nacht
Con (against)
Losing
12 Points

The Christian God Does not Exist

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/23/2011 Category: Religion
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,245 times Debate No: 18018
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (28)
Votes (7)

 

Cerebral_Narcissist

Pro

Resolution: The Christian God Does not Exist

Definition: The Christian God, as described in the Bible and possessing the qualities of omniscience, omnipotence and omnibenevolence.

As Pro it is my role to affirm that the Christian God as described above does not exist and can not exist because he is a logical impossibility. It is the role of Con to affirm that the God described above is a logical possibility.

In taking this debate my opponent recognises that the truth or falsity of God's existence is a matter that can be decided using logic, he recognises the Bible as a valid source for the nature of God irrespective of whether or not the stories are intended to be literal or allegorical. Any deviation from this will be taken as conceding the debate.

Ordinarily I avoid making a positive case for the non-existence of God but I feel that I must at least attempt to do so in order to try and repair the damage caused to this site by my fellow atheist, the egregious troll known as Izbo.

---

Argument 1: The Problem of Evil (Suffering)
Though much maligned by the activities of a recent troll, the problem of evil is still worthy of consideration. Evil however is very much a vague concept, suffering though also subjective is universally understood and experienced, and seems to cut right to the centre of what the Problem of Evil questions.

P1: If the Christian God exists he is aware of all suffering (omniscient), Capable of ending all suffering (omnipotent) and would desire to end all suffering (omnibenevolent).
P2: Suffering exists.
P3: Therefore the Christian God does not exist.

As I see my opponent has only two ways to refute the Problem of Suffering.

Refutation One: God Lacks one or more of the Omni-Characteristics
My opponent may argue that God lacks one of the Omni-Characteristics, perhaps he is Omniscient, Omnipotent but not omnibenevolent? However as the argument is predicated on the existence of a being with all three attributes such an argument causes them to concede their position.

Refutation Two
My opponent may argue that suffering is necessary to allow happiness. However this argument seeks to impose limitations on the power of God. An omnipotent being is able to create happiness without any restrictions and indeed would want to.

My opponent may seek to counter that his definition of Omnipotence is Logical Omnipotence, not Maximal Omnipotence, and that logically suffering and happiness must exist alongside each other. To justify such an argument he will have to demonstrate that creation is possessed of the greatest possible amount of Happiness and the least possible amount of suffering that is logically possible to create. He will also have to justify how God could keep suffering absent from the Garden of Eden and how he will keep suffering absent from heaven, but can not or will not do that on earth.

---

Argument 2: Omnibenevolent and Omnipotence can not co-exist.

P1: An omnibenevolent being will always perform the most benevolent act, is unable not to do so.
P2: An omnibenevolent being therefore lacks free will.
P3: A being without free will can not be described as omnipotent.
P4: A being can not posses the characteristics of omnibenevolence and omnipotence.
P5: Therefore God does not exist.

---

Argument 3: The Great Flood

Genesis 6:5 to 6:7 states,

5And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
6And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.
7And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

http://www.biblegateway.com...

How does an omniscient being regret his actions? God would have had full knowledge of the consequences of his actions.

How does an omnibenevolent God deem genocide to be justified? My opponent must show how flooding the earth and killing countless men, women and children was the most benevolent solution to a world of sin that God had intentionally created.

---

Argument 4: The Tower of Babel

In Genesis 11:4 to 11:7 it is recorded that,

"4And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.
5And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded.
6And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.
7Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech."

http://www.biblegateway.com...

Reading the text God is not omniscient on two counts, not omnipotent on one count, and not omnibenevolent on one count.

1: God is not omniscient, he learns of the tower being built and reacts to this. If he was omniscient he would have had prior knowledge of the intention to build the tower of Babel.

2: God is not omniscient, the building of the tower attracts his attention and he 'came down' to see it. If he was omniscient he would have known every detail of the event throughout all of time.

3: God is not omnipotent, he fears the ambition of mankind, he regards it as a threat that he has to nullify.

4: God is not omnibenevolent. He does not want what is best for mankind, he wants us to be divided and unable to co-operate.

---

I believe that these four arguments provide a sufficiently robust argument to affirm the resolution and look forward to my opponents rebuttal.
Nacht

Con

Before I begin addressing the contentions laid before us by the affirmative's cas, I would like to point specifically that you pay close attention to his expressed desire to limit the parameter of this debate to the Judeo Christian Holy text colloquialy referred to as the Bible. It is the observation of the contender that if possibility can be demonstrated in regards to the characterization of the Christian God (see note 101), then the affirmative has failed to uphold its burden and you are therefore obligated to vote "con."



RE: Argument 1: The Problem of Evil (Suffering)

(a) The instigator would have you believe that because of the existene of suffering, an omnibenevolent God cannot possibly exist. Right off the bat, the instigator has already failed to subscribe to the conditions which he set out in iniating our current contest.

Like many skeptics, the instigator has trapped himself within the realms of hyper literalism hence has designed rules which no reasonable person would subscribe to when dissecting texts for comprehension. He asserts that God is omnibenevolent, but this is not true. Benevolence is indeed as aspect of God's nature, but so is wisdom, justice and righteousness. Moreover, the Bible notes that God hates sin. The application of the instigator's hyper literal standard would lead us to conclude that God "loves" sin, or at very least, doesn't hate it, since there love would apprantly be all he is capable of, per the instigator's own arguments.

(b)

RE P1: Even viewing the first premise in the most favorable light, he assumes without justification that a being entirely comprised of love would automatically end all suffering. This premise is not established, therefore you are to reject it immediately. Furthermore, I'd note an example as simple as loving parents. Many do in fact love their children, but have allowed them to suffer many times throughout history even when being capable of providing aid. Clearly, one cannot simply take P1 for granted or deem it "common sense."

RE P2: I usually would not use this argument, but just for argument's sake, I would like for the instigator to prove that suffering exist. To do that, he must demostrate that "suffering" is measurable, therefore must also give a clear working definition of the term. I assert that there are some people who claim they are suffering, when society in general would disagree. If PRO is uncertain of what point I'm making, I'll elaborate in the next round.

RE P3: Even viewing P1 and P2 in the most favorable light, non sequitur. One can be capable of and have desire of performing an action, yet still not perform said action. I may be capable of robbing a bank and I may even have the desire to rob a bank in order to secure additional finances. Nonetheless, I can also have to desire to adhere to my morals. If desire for the latter is greater, I will not go through with said action.

Preemptive refutation (1): a) I have denied the 'omni' connotation. This refutation does not satisfy my objection, therefore gets dismissed. b) Omni not only fails in terms of benevolence, but also 'potence.' There are many abilities God lacks and this once again goes back to the instigator's poor decision to appeal to hyper literalism.

Preemptive refutation (2): See 'b.' Also, I contend that suffering is not necessary to allow happiness. It is nonetheless necessary to allow freedom and accountability.

Preemptive refutation (3): I have not made this argument, therefore you are obligated to dismiss this rebuttal



RE: Argument 2: Omnibenevolent and Omnipotence can not co-exist.

Seeing as I don't subscribe to either omnibenevolence or omnipotence at least in the fashion the instigator does and have alluded to both concepts being strawmen via hyper literalism, I am not obligated to addres this contention.
However, even viewing the instigator's position in the most favorable light:


P1: Okay
P2: This assumes without justification that the omnibenevolent being hasn't chosen to be omnibenevolent.
P3: Chain broken at P2
P4 ^
P5 ^


RE Argument 3: The Great Flood


(a) The instigator attempts to establish that God is not omniscient (all knowing) on the grounds that he regetted his actions in the creation of an. This is an age old question. One with an age old response. Looking at this passage (and others, such as in Jonah or Exodus) , we note that the word translated as 'relent' or repent' is actually the Hebrew expression "to be sorry for." Just because one is sorry does not mean that a change has taken course. Rather, it simply means regret for something which has taken place (C1). When individuals lose loved ones, they may regret their passing, but this is not an indication that feelings towards said loved ones have changed. To see his children do evil acts is not just something which God 'regretted' then, but what he regrets on a regular basis.

Even viewing PRO's claim in a favorable light, does it make sense that God would allow man to continue to exist if he "regretted" their existence in the context which is being alluded to? PRO likes to take notice of God's omnipotence, thus surely even he must realize the gap in his reasoning.

(b) Looking past the instigator's continual support for hyper literalism and that their are clearly other aspects of God's nature (in this case, justice), it should be noted that their are clear differences between a human taking another human's life and God doing so. For God, the concept and ramifications of 'death' doesn't even exist. These men who were adjucated in accordance to his will merely went from one realm (earth) to the next (paradise). Due to space constraints, I shall not pacify PRO's false dilemna.

RE: Argument 4: The Tower of Babel

1: The instigator may as well offer the same reasoning for any other instance at which God intervenes throughout the Bible. If God knew David would commit the act of murder as well as commit adultery with Bathsheba, why not prevent him from doing this in the first place? Or why not punish David before even committing the act? The answer is that God acts and reacts however he so chooses in accordance to his will. If speculation is of any value, God probably chose to act at that time just so he'd be acting upon the defiant men committing their defiant acts. Sort of how law enforcement acts upon criminals breaking the law.

2: The instigator fails to justify his assumption which he uses to infer that God did not in fact know every detail of the event. How does he reach this conclusion? Dismiss this subpoint entirely until their is justication for it.

3: This does not follow. What fear? How is it a threat based on this verse? And even if established, how would these premises lead us to conclude that God wasn't omnipotent. Even granting the most absurd scenario, maybe he simply "fears" they too can become "omnipotent." :D

4: How is supreme arrogance best for mankind? Does not the Bible teach that pride always comes before the fall? Once again pacifying the PRO's false concept of omnibenevolence, this would be a rather loving act.

==================
And that will be all for now.


Citation (1) : http://www.gotquestions.org...

Note (101) : Possibility can be demonstrated purely through negation of the instigator's assertions. Elaboration upon this concept can be offered upon request.
Debate Round No. 1
Cerebral_Narcissist

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for accepting this debate.

Con's opening paragraph and footnote is correct, to paraphrase. If I fail to uphold my burden then I fail to demonstrate that God is a logical impossibility, therefore he would be a logical possibility and so arguments should fall to con.

---

Re: Argument 1: The Problem of Evil (Suffering).

NB: I will be using my opponents subdivisions into a and b.


(a) My opponent replies that,
"He asserts that God is omnibenevolent, but this is not true."

This is an annoying reply for a number of reasons, firstly I was clear in the opening argument we were discussing the,

"The Christian God, as described in the Bible and possessing the qualities of omniscience, omnipotence and omnibenevolence."

He has accepted the terms of this debate, if he is now unwilling or unable to address the issue of omnibenevolence he must conceed.

Indeed I already preemptied such a refutation in R1 where I state that my opponent may seek to address the Paradox of the problem of evil by arguing that God is not possessed of the three omni-characteristics, I made it quite clear that

As the argument is predicated on the existence of a being with all three attributes such an argument causes them to concede their position.

Therefore at this point in the debate my opponent has conceded, presumably he will address this issue in the next round.

(b) My opponent replies that,
"Even viewing the first premise in the most favorable light, he assumes without justification that a being entirely comprised of love would automatically end all suffering. This premise is not established, therefore you are to reject it immediately."

My opponent does not have the freedom to view the first premise in a favourable or an unfavourable light as it is based upon the attributes my opponent has agreed to accept. That is to say a being possessed of the omni-characteristics.

It is self evident that such a God would be aware of all suffering (omniscient), would have the power to end all suffering (omnipotent), and would desire to end all suffering (omnibenevolent). It is self evident because this is what these terms mean.

Nowhere in P1 did I mention a being comprised of love automatically ending all suffering.

My opponent further states that,
"Furthermore, I'd note an example as simple as loving parents. Many do in fact love their children, but have allowed them to suffer many times throughout history even when being capable of providing aid. Clearly, one cannot simply take P1 for granted or deem it "common sense.""

This is not a valid analogy, parents are not possessed of any omni-characteristics, this is not even relevant. A parent may indeed be cruel to their children, this does not create a logical paradox.

My opponent attempts to address P2 and P3 by stating,
"One can be capable of and have desire of performing an action, yet still not perform said action. I may be capable of robbing a bank and I may even have the desire to rob a bank in order to secure additional finances. Nonetheless, I can also have to desire to adhere to my morals. If desire for the latter is greater, I will not go through with said action."

This again is not a valid analogy, we are again talking about omni-characteristics. If my opponent could demonstrate that an omnipotent, omni-avaricious bank robber (that is one possessed of absolute power and absolute greed) would not rob a bank, then it would become a valid analogy.

My opponent further states,
Preemptive refutation (1): a) I have denied the 'omni' connotation. This refutation does not satisfy my objection, therefore gets dismissed. b) Omni not only fails in terms of benevolence, but also 'potence.' There are many abilities God lacks and this once again goes back to the instigator's poor decision to appeal to hyper literalism.

I do not believe my opponent has taken sufficient time to read the debate, he does not realise that he is not in a position to deny the omni connatation. The debate is written to require to affirm the three stated omni-characteristics of God.

To summarise, I have shown how the Problem of Evil leads to a logical paradox for the omni God. My opponent has apparently accepted this and so has refused to argue for the omni God thus conceding the debate.

Preemptive refutation (2): See 'b.' Also, I contend that suffering is not necessary to allow happiness. It is nonetheless necessary to allow freedom and accountability.

My opponent needs to explain how suffering is necessary to allow freedom and accountability, hinting at it is not sufficient to refute the Problem of Evil.


Preemptive refutation (3): I have not made this argument, therefore you are obligated to dismiss this rebuttal

There was no Preemptive refutation 3. I do not believe my opponet has taken sufficient time to read this debate.

The Problem of Evil is Affirmed.

---

RE: Argument 2: Omnibenevolent and Omnipotence can not co-exist.

My opponent states,
Seeing as I don't subscribe to either omnibenevolence or omnipotence at least in the fashion the instigator does and have alluded to both concepts being strawmen via hyper literalism, I am not obligated to addres this contention.

Again by refusing to accept such terms my opponent forfeits the debate.

To repeat argument 2,

P1: An omnibenevolent being will always perform the most benevolent act, is unable not to do so.
P2: An omnibenevolent being therefore lacks free will.
P3: A being without free will can not be described as omnipotent.
P4: A being can not posses the characteristics of omnibenevolence and omnipotence.
P5: Therefore God does not exist.

My opponent replies with,

P1: Okay
P2: This assumes without justification that the omnibenevolent being hasn't chosen to be omnibenevolent.
P3: Chain broken at P2
P4 ^
P5 ^

If he accepts P1, and he does, he also accepts P2. His rebuttal is irrelevant, God can not do otherwise. He has failed to address the fatal contradiction between omnipotence and omnibenevolence.

Argument 2 is affirmed.

---

Re: Argument 3: The Great Flood

Even if my I accept my opponents claim that God is merely saddend by what has occured, as opposed to personally remorseful the onus is on him to demonstrate to address this,

"How does an omnibenevolent God deem genocide to be justified? My opponent must show how flooding the earth and killing countless men, women and children was the most benevolent solution to a world of sin that God had intentionally created."

Simply stating that he does that the dead move onto the afterlife is not sufficient, he must demonstrate how their suffering is consistent with omnibenevolence and omnipotence.

Argument 3 is therefore affirmed.

---

Re: Argument 4: The Tower of Babel

Here there are four points,

1: The first point is ignored, I am simply supposed to accept that omniscient being behaves unlike an omniscient being throughout his source material and somehow assume that no contradiction is caused.

2: "The instigator fails to justify his assumption which he uses to infer that God did not in fact know every detail of the event. How does he reach this conclusion? Dismiss this subpoint entirely until their is justication for it."

The justification for it was in the quote and the emphasis, God comes down to inspect the tower. Yet he is an omniscient being so would know of every single atom of that tower before he even created mankind.

3: This refutation refutes itself and supports my interpretation, therefore I don't need to address it.

4: There is no mention of supreme arrogance in the text, my opponent has failed to show how I have a false concept of omnibenevolence.

Argument 4 is affirmed.
Nacht

Con

RE Re: Argument 1: The Problem of Evil (Suffering).

(a)

The instigator is annoyed with my reply believing that I have not satisfied his parameters. However, PRO should take another look at both his parameters and my argument. For this, I have but two points to add:



        1. He provided no definition of 'omni' terms which he supplied at the beginning of the round. He simply listed them, thus inviting me opportunity challenge his understanding of them. Anything outside of the parameters is fair game.

        1. As per my previous round, I claimed "Seeing as I don't subscribe to either omnibenevolence or omnipotence at least in the fashion the instigator does." I stand by my assertion of God's omnibenevolence not being true, but clarify in saying that it is the instigator's hyper literal treatment of these terms which I truly reject. Just as I may believe bottomless pits exist, I would be quick to correct anyone who believed that there are actually holes on the planet which have no ground and/or eventual stopping point.


As for pre-empting such a refutation, if that is true, then it follows that the instigator considers attacks on his understanding of these concepts as valid arguments.

As for conceding, this is nonsense. In spite of the absurdity of the argument, I've pacified the instigator at each instance, going further to demonstrate that his reasoning is always invalid even in the most favorable light.


(b)

RE P1: The instigator refuses to justify his assumption and passes it off as self-evidence, but a more applicable term would be 'begging the question.' As for what the term means, even going by his warped definition, it means being entirely comprised of love. Beyond that, we know nothing more, much less that such nature would compel one to end all suffering if in said position.

He claims that nowhere in P1 did he a mention a being comprised of love would automatically end all suffering, but that's the intent of the argument, being that a being (no pun intended) entirely comprised of love would end all suffering if it had the ability.

The instigator addresses my parental love example by pointing out that parents do not possess omni-characteristics. This is true, but completely besides the point. The implication is that love may compel one to allow their children to suffer so that they may learn from said suffering or be accountable for their actions, hence progress. PRO's notion is love is far too simple and is by no means comparable to the concept realistically which has far more implications than we would have time to discuss even in a dozen rounds.

Using the Bible (a source which PRO stressed we cater to), we are reminded by the parable of the prodigal son, in which the father allowed his son to suffer, God allowing the Israelites to suffer in slavery or God in allowing Jesus to suffer. Clearly, going by the Biblical understanding of love, love does not automatically compel one to prevent suffering.

RE P2: PRO drops my contention requesting that he prove suffering exist. Please extend said contention.

RE P3: The instigator doesn't seem to understand the ramifications of the possibility I insinuated. I made that analogy to demonstrate that even by playing his game, his conclusion is unjustified. If someone is "omnibenevolent" and omnipotent, maybe that someone is capable of doing X and has the desire to do X. After all, X is benevolent. On the other hand, since Y is more benevolent, so maybe the 'omnibenevolent' Joe will decide to do Y instead


RE Preemptive refutation (1): See my rebuttal in "a" at the beginning of this round.

RE Preemptive refutation (2): PRO is incorrect to assume I 'need' to do a thing as far as his pre-emptive contentions go. Still . . . It's quite simple: In enabling suffering, one is free to suffer and one is forced to be accountable for actions which lead to suffering, whether these acts self-caused or not.

RE Preemptive refutation (3): This was actually in response to the three sentences crafted after two sentences labeled under 'refutation 2.' I responded to the portions separately.


RE RE: Argument 2: Omnibenevolent and Omnipotence can not co-exist.

Once again, it should be noted that I've pacified the instigator's contentions throughout this debate after offering reasons to dismiss them at face value, hence it's absurd to claim I've forfeited.


In the previous round, I pointed out that his 5 premised argument on this contention was broken as per the claim made in the second premise which asserted that PRO assumes without justification that the omnibenevolent being hasn't chosen to be omnibenevolent. Once more, the instigator opts not justify his assumption. Hence the chain remains broken. If Joe the omnibenevolent crossing guard's omnibenevolence is merely a result of him only desiring to be benevolent, then this is an indication of free will. Should Joe decide one day to be omnilethargic or omniabhorrent, let us hope we are not frequenting the streets that day.

RE RE: Argument 3: The Great Flood

I addressed God's regret in great detail in the previous round and even posed a question pacifying the instigator's understanding of regret. Seeing as the instigator has neither addressed my explanation or question, you are to extend it to extend across to this round.

As for the request to address how their suffering is consistent with omnibenevolence and omnipotence, refer back to my explanation concerning love and suffering above.

RE RE: Argument 4: The Tower of Babel

1: Yes, the first point is ignored---my point that is. Extend it to this round. To add, I'm not certain as to what PRO considers behaving like an omniscient being, but I do know what the Bible passes for such behavior. As per the explanation I offered in the previous round, God punishing people upon them committing punishable acts makes plenty of sense. Law enforcement as well as the Judicial branch may be able to predict that many criminals will break the law, but they aren't going to intervene until the criminals actually break the law.

2: The assumption is still not justified. PRO is trying to link God coming down to "see the city and the tower" to lack of foresight, but to use another real world example, last ear, I went on a cruise to Alaska. This was the second time I had gone on such a cruise to this location. Throughout much of the cruise, I would go out on the balcony of my stateroom to appreciate the scenery. I did the same thing the previous year. I did not go and "see the scenery" on the grounds that I had never seen it before (as I had), but that I simply like to view the scenery. In the same light, it's silly to conclude that God went down to the earth to see a tower which he had never seen before

3: PRO does not contest my assertions, but simply vaguely claims that they support him. Extend.

4: And where is this notion of the tower being "best for mankind" mentioned in the text? PRO decided to interpret the attributes of having the tower. Why am I to be denied the same liberty? Not to mention that unlike his interpretation, mine can be inferred from the text as the tower was being built to "symbolize man's power and greatness."

============

And that will be all for now.

Debate Round No. 2
Cerebral_Narcissist

Pro

My opponent has continued to ignore both the resolution and my arguments, it is now time to summarise the debate and far too late for him to address the issues I have raised.

Argument 1: The Problem of Evil.

P1: If the Christian God exists he is aware of all suffering (omniscient), Capable of ending all suffering (omnipotent) and would desire to end all suffering (omnibenevolent).
P2: Suffering exists.
P3: Therefore the Christian God does not exist.

P1 requires no further explaination, it is simply the product of what those words mean. My opponent claims that because I did not provide definitions he is free to challenge the meaning of such words. Unfortunately he has failed to challenge such definitions, he has simply told me that they do apply to God. Which automatically forfeits the debate as it is predicated on the alleged existence of a God will omni-characteristics. It is now far too late for him to offer a new argument of a contrary version of the omni-characteristics so we are forced to rely on the dictionary.

Omniscience: Having total knowledge, knowing everything.
http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

Omnipotence:Having unlimited or universal power, authority, or force; all-powerful http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

Omnibenevolence: Literally all good. Unlimited or infinite benevolence. http://encyclopedia.thefreedictionary.com...

My opponent has no choice but to concede P1, it is self evident.

P2 is also self-evident. Has my opponent ever felt pain, hunger, anguish, illness etc etc.

P3 is the rational logical conclusion of P1 and P2

From the very first round I offered two rebuttals to the Problem of Evil. Firstly that God is not possessed of the omni-characteristics, or secondly that suffering is a requirement for happiness.

I made it very clear that by taking the first option my opponent would be conceding the debate, as he would be arguing against the existence of a God with all three omni-characteristics. I specifically suggested that my opponent might seek to argue that God was not omnibenevolent, I specifically showed how this would forfeit the debate.

My opponent stated that he denied God's omnibenevolence.

My opponent has flirted with the idea of the second refutation, that suffering is necessary for happiness. This is the only way that Con can actually defeat the Problem of Evil that I am aware of, certainly no other escape clause has emerged during the debate.

I made it very clear that to affirm this he would need to "demonstrate that creation is possessed of the greatest possible amount of Happiness and the least possible amount of suffering that is logically possible to create. He will also have to justify how God could keep suffering absent from the Garden of Eden and how he will keep suffering absent from heaven, but can not or will not do that on earth."

He has failed to make this case, he has failed to address the logical paradox caused by the Problem of Evil. This alone is sufficient to affirm the resolution.

Argument 2: Omnibenevolence and Omnipotence can not co-exist.

P1: An omnibenevolent being will always perform the most benevolent act, is unable not to do so.
P2: An omnibenevolent being therefore lacks free will.
P3: A being without free will can not be described as omnipotent.
P4: A being can not posses the characteristics of omnibenevolence and omnipotence.
P5: Therefore God does not exist.

P1: This is self-explanatory, an omnibenevolent being would always seek to perform the most benevolent act possible. If an omnibenevolent being decided not to cure your cancer, if an omnibenevolent being bought you a new car, if an omnibenevolent being did anything, it would have to be for the intention of causing maximal goodness. Whether or not we understand it.

P2: This is self-explanatory. If an omnibenevolent being did anything that was not omnibenevolent it would not be omnibenevolent. An omnibenevolent being can not choose to be anything other than omnibenevolent, that would be a logical contradiction. It therefore by definition lacks free will.

P3: Again this is self-explanatory, an omnipotent being has no limits on it's frreedom or power.

P4: Is simply the product of P1, P2, and P3.

P5: If a being can not possess the characteristics of omnipotence and omnibenevolence than the being known as God which is supposedly possessed of both can not exist because he would be a paradox.

My opponent tries to argue that,
"In the previous round, I pointed out that his 5 premised argument on this contention was broken as per the claim made in the second premise which asserted that PRO assumes without justification that the omnibenevolent being hasn't chosen to be omnibenevolent."

No such assumption was made, logical proof was offered that the omnibenevolent being is unable to to choose. My opponent fails to address the fatal contradiction between omnipotence and omnibenevolence. The argument rests on the assumption that free will is a component of potency, my opponent has not challenged this assumption, and I am not if he could but it is the only way he could have argued against this.

Argument 2 therefore still holds.

Argument 3: The Great Flood

My opponent complains that,
"I addressed God's regret in great detail in the previous round and even posed a question pacifying the instigator's understanding of regret. Seeing as the instigator has neither addressed my explanation or question, you are to extend it to extend across to this round."

Actually I effectively conceded Con's argument with regards the wording of this quotation and showed how the argument still stood. This was ignored by Con.

If you remember the passage was a challenge against both God's omniscience (regret for his actions) and his omnibenevolence (drowning the earth). If we ignore the former we still have the latter.

Again I ask,
How does an omnibenevolent God deem genocide to be justified? My opponent must show how flooding the earth and killing countless men, women and children was the most benevolent solution to a world of sin that God had intentionally created...Simply stating as he does that the dead move onto the afterlife is not sufficient, he must demonstrate how their suffering is consistent with omnibenevolence and omnipotence.

Or to be put it otherwise,
God is omnibenevolent (Can not be denied without conceding the debate).
God drowns the earth causing suffering to millions. (Can not be denied without conceding the debate).

Conclusion: God does not exist due to logical paradox or that drowning the earth must be the most benevolent act available to God.

My claim is the former, my opponent must provide evidence to support the latter. He has not, he has conceded Argument 3.

Argument 4: The Tower of Babel.

Not a single rebuttal has been offered for the four issues raised with regards the tower of Babel. Arguments extended.

---

I ask voters not to vote on the basis of their own religious opinions. The simple fact is that under the definitions employed in this debate a specific conception of God can not logically exist. Therefore the only viable vote is for PRO. In addition to being unable to address the logical paradoxes I have raised CON repeatedly states his refusal to argue in favour of a God possessed of the Omni-Characteristics, therefore the only viable vote is a vote for PRO.

Thank you for your time.
Nacht

Con

The instigator begins his final round, pointing out that it is now far too late for me to address the issues which he has raised. If he is referring anything which he has just now brought up in round 3, I am more than free to address it. If however he is implying that there is something which I've left uncontested in my first and second, as you may realize in actually reading each round, I've gone to great lengths to address each contention thoroughly.

RE RE RE: Argument 1: The Problem of Evil.

RE RE P1:

(a)

The instigator is correct. I did in fact tell him that that his understanding of these terms did not apply to God. What he forgets to mention is that I proved it didn't an offered a more reasonable understanding simultaneously. My explanation for omnibenevolence was that God has other attributes, thus is certainly not entirely comprised of love. My explanation of omnipotence was that there were many things God was capable of doing, therefore he is certainly not capable of literally being able to do anything. Therefore, I've challenged his understanding and the dictionary items which may or may not support his understanding automatically fail if they do in fact support said understanding.

Seeing as how the instigator took no opportunity to demonstrate the errors in the above reasoning present since the first round, we are thus to see this reasoning as having been conceded to, thus the last round dictionary tactics which I shall address below are not worth your consideration
.



Now lets look at his definitions provided from an online dictionary.


Omniscience: I did not contest this at any point in the debate, thus have no objection to it

Omnipotence: If "all-powerful" serves to indicate literally capable of any action conceivable, this understanding fails as I've already proven. If it serves to indicate the actual intended usage of the term, meaning to describe something of great power/authority or with the most power/authority, then it's fine.

Omnibenevolence: Nowhere does the source say "literally all good." Even if you could interpret it as such, it fails for reasons I've stated. As for unlimited quantities, that's fine as it doesn't contradict having other characteristics in unlimited quantities as well. Like with potence, 'most good' or the 'ultimate source of good' better serves the ideas posited by scripture.

(b)

This definition nonsense aside, he still hasn't remotely demonstrated how his first premise is self-evident. Remember, I asked him to justify his assumption that a being entirely comprised of love would automatically end all suffering. In both rounds, he has refused to do so. On the other hand, not only have I attacked him for not completing his task and supporting his assertions, but have gone further to point out that the Biblical concept of love includes allowance of suffering.

RE RE P2: PRO has waited until the last round to satisfy my request of proving the existence of suffering. He cites the feeling of pain, hunger, anguish, illness, etc.' Although I had more in mind with this contention, seeing as how it's the last round, I'll simply cite Descartes "I think, therefore I am", demonstrating that we know we exist. Beyond that however, we don't know to absolute certainty anything else concerning existence. Indeed, according to PRO, suffering MIGHT exist, but he hasn't established that it or any other fabric reality outside ourselves certainly does.

RE REP3: Once more, the instigator doesn't address my favorable light hypothetical in which P1 and P2 are correct. In other words, he concedes.


The instigator once again attempts to draw us back to this idea that I have conceded to debate. I'll give this matter more thorough notice in the closing section of this round, but would ask that you note that I have pacified the instigator in every contention, demonstrating that even with his understanding of the terms, he position does not stand.

He claims I have specifically stated that I deny God's omnibenevolence, but as you can see by my clarification at the beginning of the previous round, it's really PRO's understanding which I reject. Did my opponent so much as address my clarifying remarks? Certainly not.


RE RE: Pre-Emptive Refutation 1: (a) Remains uncontested.

RE RE: Pre-Emptive Refutation 2 (and 3 the labeling of previous rounds): PRO speciously attempts to establish that I have not satisfied the condition he laid out for this refutation in the first round, but as I've stressed in both of the proceeding rounds, I have not advocated the notion that suffering is necessary to allow happiness. My claim was that it was necessary to allow freedom and accountability. Since the instigator had no interest in my actual assertions, we need not dwell on this contention any longer.


PRO fails.

RE RE RE: Argument 2: Omnibenevolence and Omnipotence can not co-exist.

P1: Okay
P2: Yes, if an omnibenevolent being did anything that was not omnibenevolent, it would not be omnibenevolent, but based on the characteristics which PRO subscribes to, there's no reason to why it is not possible for the omnibenevolent being not to have been omnilethargic at one point or perhaps become an omni-disco-dancer some time in the future, especially if said being is omnipotent. Right now, Joe the omnibenevolent crossing guard is omnibenevolent, hence right now, we can expect 'maximal goodness' from Joe. There's nothing to discredit the notion that Joe chooses to do acts of 'maximal goodness.' If there is, PRO hasn't shown it.
P3: Chain Broken at P2
P4: ^
P5: ^

PRO fails.

RE RE RE: Argument 3: The Great Flood

-PRO notes he concedes that his argument against omniscience doesn't follow.


-As for the omnibenevolent bit, I extended my explanation showing how biblical love/good and suffering often existed side by side throughout scripture. Again, there's the case of the prodigal son, there's the case of God allowing the Israelites to endure slavery and there's the case of allowing Jesus to endure unimaginable suffering. The Biblical standard of love goes against the instigator's. My explanation remains uncontested as the instigator merely reasserts what he did in the first round.

PRO fails.

RE RE RE Argument 4: The Tower of Babel.

The instigator claims that not a single rebuttal has been offered for the four issues raised, but anyone who actually reads my previous round knows otherwise.

PRO fails
-----------------------

Conclusion



ISSUE of DEFINITIONS.: You'll note that contrary to my method of considering the possibility that PRO's understanding of the terms is correct throughout EACH of his contentions, the instigator does not grant me the same benefit of the doubt. In other words, if you disagree with the affirmative on the definition issue, being that PRO's understanding of his own terms is false, then you are to conclude that he has conceded to my stance, thus are compelled to vote CON.

ISSUE of CONCESSION: Throughout his rounds, I notice that PRO constantly asserts that I have conceded to his stance. This is on the grounds that I have argued against his understanding of the terms which he subscribes to. Intentional or not, the instigator is being deceptive as I have argued assuming I'm correct on the definition matter AND assuming I am incorrect . You'll notice that much of my attempts at the latter route has been ignored by PRO (i.e.. me demonstrating that the the concept of love in the Bible often serves to allow suffering).

It should also be noted that during the second round, I clarified with a direct quote from my first round ("Seeing as I don't subscribe to either omnibenevolence or omnipotence at least in the fashion the instigator does.") demonstrating that it's necessarily the terms PRO uses which I reject, but rather his understanding of them. Like much of my case, said clarification remain uncontested.

For anything else, if you find the instigator has not satisfied his burden, vote con.


I thank the instigator for the debate and the audience for reading. Have a nice day. Vote CON.
Debate Round No. 3
28 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Cerebral_Narcissist 5 years ago
Cerebral_Narcissist
"CN, honestly, the gist of my argument is pretty basic. I accepted your premise, which was to debate. I rejected your understanding of the ideas which you based this debate upon (The Christian God's attributes). It's simple."

And my reply is simply.
1: To debate, was the not premise of the debate.
2: The definition of the Christian God was the premise of the debate.
3: You rejected the premise, therefore you did not argue as con against position.
4: Therefore you conceded.

Or to put it another way.
Me: Assuming that A is B how can A even exist if A can not be both be both A and B.
You: A is not B.
Me: But that's the assumption the debate is based on... why did you take this debate?
You: Oh...

If I've not made my point very clear by now I give up!
Posted by Nacht 5 years ago
Nacht
CN, honestly, the gist of my argument is pretty basic. I accepted your premise, which was to debate. I rejected your understanding of the ideas which you based this debate upon (The Christian God's attributes). It's simple. If you have a problem with this reasoning, you can explain and I'll be more than happy to offer additional clarification. If you simply attend to reiterate the same assertions ad nauseum as you have been doing,then I don't see any reason for you to continue replying. In fact, if this is the case, then this will probably be my last reply on the subject.

"Those are the rules of the debate, fournier voted the way he did because he does not believe that this site is bound by the rules of debate."

What rules might these be? To my understanding, the "rules" debaters refer to here are derived from competition debate (LD, policy, etc). And in said debate formats, NEG can challenge AFF on his understanding of the terms used. And Fournier is correct. This site isn't bound by said rules as I see no place which requires that anyone adhere to them. Perhaps they are popular within the community, but popularity doesn't necessitate binding rules. Not to mention that you didn't define the terms in the first place.
Posted by Cerebral_Narcissist 5 years ago
Cerebral_Narcissist
By taking the debate you accepted the premise of the debate that is how debate works.

If you feel that I misrepresented the Christian God you should have contacted me before taking the debate and mentioned this, by clicking accept you... accept!

Those are the rules of the debate, fournier voted the way he did because he does not believe that this site is bound by the rules of debate.
Posted by Nacht 5 years ago
Nacht
"The first round clearly states - "Definition: The Christian God, as described in the Bible and possessing the qualities of omniscience, omnipotence and omnibenevolence." Why take the debate if you're not going to argue against what Pro *clearly* means by "The Christian God"??"

What Pro *clearly* means by "The Christian God" is *clearly* false if you *clearly* take the time to *clearly* read the Christian Bible. This debate called for the Bible as the source, hence I can't fathom your outrage. No matter, however, as there are other uses for the terms omnipotent and omnibenevolent that don't boil down to the 'built-in strawman' which PRO and many others (I assume yourself included) seem to be impressed by. I can't imagine why you chose not read a debate on a debate site, but that's your prerogative.

If substantial justice and fair play (*chuckles*) is your concern though, you might wish to use your eyes. Mr. Fournier couldn't have insinuated it any better. Why take the time to host a debate about the Christian God if you have no intention of debating about the Christian God in the first place? Perhaps we should host debates about Thomas Jefferson and George Washington's opinions on the first amendment, only to narrow the scope of said debates to the content included in the films Pulp Fiction and Lord of The Rings.
Posted by Cerebral_Narcissist 5 years ago
Cerebral_Narcissist
"However, pro failed adequately explain why it was omnibenevolent to end all suffering."

Hahah... seriously? Oh well you have to laugh.
Posted by Nacht 5 years ago
Nacht
I assure you that my intentions aren't so basic as to "go round and round", nor are they so childish as to "get in the last word." However, one is naturally curious when they encounter someone else with viewpoints that oppose their own. In this case, you believing your arguments hold. To me, it's crystal clear that they do not. Nonetheless, you are not obligated to address my comments.

I don't advise concerning yourself with things such as 'leaving it down to the voters' or the 'true outcome', whatever it may be. To value such things places in you a position to miss out on what is truly gained through these interactions.

Ciao. =D
Posted by Cerebral_Narcissist 5 years ago
Cerebral_Narcissist
God I sound like such an a$s...
Posted by Cerebral_Narcissist 5 years ago
Cerebral_Narcissist
Well we are going to go and round in circles, as far as I concerned you did not understand the debate and you in fact passing comments on a debate that did not occur. You probably should have read the resolution before accepting.

I'll leave it down to the voters, not that I care... the true outcome is self evident.
Posted by Nacht 5 years ago
Nacht
Cerebral Narcissist . . .

1) If I supplied an 'irrelevant straw man', then by all means, I invite you to cite that which I l attacked which did not concern any of the assertions you made.

I made that point (that your understanding of the terms contradict scripture) constantly, hence me also going the extra mile and taking the time in each contention to view your own assertions in the most favorable light. At the end of my final round, I strictly pointed out that if voters were convinced by my assessment of the definitions, then any additional assessments they have of this debate is of no consequence. Of course, you know this, as you took the time to provide your own definition, via dictionary sites during your third round.

2) I read your rebuttal and with all due respect, it fails on the same grounds that your response to my problems with your first contention fails. I challenged you to justify your assertion and you simply re-assert said assertion. Yes, I understand fully well that you believe that a being entirely comprised of 'benevolence' is restricted to being benevolent, but if I for whatever reason choose to only think and do good things, then my thoughts and actions are simply entirely comprised of benevolence. Maybe at one point, I reasonably conclude I'm pm;u going to benevolent. Maybe at another, I conclude I need to only be just. There is nothing in the term suggesting compulsion.

3) I quote from my R2, "As for the request to address how their suffering is consistent with omnibenevolence and omnipotence, refer back to my explanation concerning love and suffering above." Now if you mean you weren't satisfied with my proof of this, that's fine, but you didn't address the explanation, thus it doesn't matter

I took two routes in this debate. I argued pointing out that the "paradox debate" is irrelevant with proper use of the words you listed under definitions and that even applying your usage of said terms, they still do. There's no concessi
Posted by Cerebral_Narcissist 5 years ago
Cerebral_Narcissist
"1) You note that I correctly note that the biblical definition of omni-benevolence and PRO's definition are not equivalent. If you agree with my assessment of omni-benevolence (that it doesn't mean something entirely comprised), then that means you agree none of PRO's contentions stand as they each rely on an assessment of omni-benevolence that does not subscribe to scripture."

Actually you failed to make that point, you supplied an irrelevant straw man. On a number of occaisions you reference arguments never made.

"2) I understood the argument just fine, but the problem with PRO's contention is that even under his understanding of omnibenevolence (which to the voter, doesn't apply if you agree with my assessment of the idea), there's nothing suggesting that a being currently entirely comprised of good isn't comprised of good by choice."

Yea you did not understand the rebuttal, actually it looks like you did not even read it. An omnibenevolent being CAN NOT choose to be malcious, so therefore lacks complete omnipotence causing a fatal contradiction. You failed to attack the argument.

"3) I need not address the flood 'dilemma' as even applying omnibenevolence, I've still shown that suffering is fully enabled by biblical 'love'."

You never showed that.

The problem being because these are logical paradoxes if you concede one you concede the whole debate.
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by JustCallMeTarzan 5 years ago
JustCallMeTarzan
Cerebral_NarcissistNachtTied
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Reasons for voting decision: The first round clearly states - "Definition: The Christian God, as described in the Bible and possessing the qualities of omniscience, omnipotence and omnibenevolence." Why take the debate if you're not going to argue against what Pro *clearly* means by "The Christian God"?? Con lost conduct for quibbling over a very minor point.
Vote Placed by Man-is-good 5 years ago
Man-is-good
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Reasons for voting decision: While I found Cerebral's arguments on the contradictions posed by the 'problem of evil', I have to award Nacht a point for conduct (due to the brief struggle over definitions, and Cerebral's late presentation of them in the debate).
Vote Placed by KRFournier 5 years ago
KRFournier
Cerebral_NarcissistNachtTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro insists that Con is not allowed to reject his "omni" definitions, yet the resolution states the existence of the Christian God. Thus, pro wants to get an automatic license to misrepresent the Christian God in order to refute him. It's a straw man argument from top to bottom.
Vote Placed by izbo10 5 years ago
izbo10
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Reasons for voting decision: con did not adequately attack pros arguments
Vote Placed by Lionheart 5 years ago
Lionheart
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro had more reliable sources.
Vote Placed by randolph7 5 years ago
randolph7
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Reasons for voting decision: Good debate pro's insistance on con's having conceeded when he had cost conduct. However, pro failed adequately explain why it was omnibenevolent to end all suffering. Without that the syllogism fails.
Vote Placed by CD-Host 5 years ago
CD-Host
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Reasons for voting decision: Arg 1: Con does address this by rejecting omni-benevolence. He correctly notes that the biblical definition of omni-benevolence and the one Pro uses are not equivalent. I'm not sure Pro understood this argument. Arg 2: Con's P2 refutation (rnd 1) didn't address the point. Its not clear to me if con understood the argument. Arg 3: Pro loses the first argument regarding regret but con never addresses the flood and the 2 omnis. Arg4: Neither con nor pro address each other's arguments.