The Instigator
DevoutChristian
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
JohnMaynardKeynes
Con (against)
Winning
63 Points

The Christian God Exists

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 11 votes the winner is...
JohnMaynardKeynes
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/21/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 761 times Debate No: 59335
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (5)
Votes (11)

 

DevoutChristian

Pro

Resolved: The Christian God Exists

I will argue that God exists and atheism and agnosticism are irrational.

First round is for acceptance. My opponent may provide definitions, but I think they are common sense.
JohnMaynardKeynes

Con

I accept.

Resolved: The Christian God Exists

Burden of Proof

The burden of proof, of course, is on PRO who is affirmi
ng the resolution. He must be able to prove to us that the Christian God exists.

Definitions

Christian God -- The O3 God: omnipotent (all-powerful), omniscient (all-knowing), omnibenevolent (all-good) and the first cause.

Exists -- have objective reality or being (1)


Best of luck to PRO, and I eagerly await his arguments.





[1] Google "exists definition"
Debate Round No. 1
DevoutChristian

Pro

DevoutChristian forfeited this round.
JohnMaynardKeynes

Con

Unfortunately my opponent has forfeited. The burden of proof, of course, is on him, so I expect him to offer his opening arguments in the next round to affirm the resolution. At this point, I’m going to offer my own case negating the resolution. If any of my arguments hold, meaning that my opponent either fails to adequately respond to them or drops them (e.g., by forfeiting), he cannot possibly win.


C1) Lack of evidence and Necessity

The fact of the matter remains that there isn’t any solid, empirical evidence for God’s existence. In fact, there is no evidence for the existence of God. Moreover, from what we now about quantum mechanics, it is possible for a universe to literally appear “from nothing,” which negates the “God of the Gaps” argument that I’m sure my opponent will raise. Without the necessity for a God and in the absence of evidence, why should we believe that there is one?

To evidence this end, Dr. Michio Kaku had the following to say in response to Stephen Hawing’s argument that something could come from nothing:

“If you do the math, you find out that the sum total of matter in the universe can cancel against the sum total of negative gravitational energy, yielding a universe with zero (or close to zero) net matter/energy. So, in some sense, universes are for free. It does not take net matter and energy to create entire universes. In this way, in the bubble bath, bubbles can collide, create baby bubbles, or simple pop into existence from nothing.” [2]

Moreover, if my opponent used the KCA to argue that everything must have a cause, he must be able to explain what God’s cause was. If he argues that God didn’t have to have a cause, he must explain to us how this could be so and why we should make such an assumption. After all, the existence of God doesn’t possess truth value and isn’t falsifiable. This brings me to my next contention.

C2) Occam’s Razor

Alan Baker provides a succinct explanation of this principle:

“Occam's Razor may be formulated as an epistemic principle: if theory T is simpler than theory T*, then it is rational (other things being equal) to believe T rather than T*. Or it may be formulated as a methodological principle: if T is simpler than T* then it is rational to adopt T as one's working theory for scientific purposes.” [3]

In other words, theory T is the theory that the universe can come from nothing, and theory T* is the theory that an uncaused God existed a spaceless, atemporal state state and set off the process of creation. We have two competing hypotheses, one of which is borne out by evidence, the other of which is not. My opponent’s theory has significantly more assumptions than mine, and thus mine is more plausible. He must be able to empirical bear out his case beyond a reasonable doubt in order to win this debate.

C3) Absence of Evidence is Evidence of Absence

We may often hear theists argue that we cannot categorically disprove God. This happens to be true, as it is virtually impossible to prove a negative to the effect of “X doesn’t exist.” In the same way that I can’t disprove the existence of God, I cannot disprove that there is a flying purple unicorn in this room, or that the universe wasn’t created 10 seconds ago and we were brought into existence with our memories. The point is, I don’t have to: the burden of proof lies with my opponent. I trust, for instance, that he doesn’t believe in fairies, or unicorns, or the flying spaghetti monster. However, there is as much evidence for those as there is for the Christian God: zilch.

The Celestial Teapot analogy provides a framework for this line of thinking:

“If I were to suggest that between the Earth and Mars there is a china teapot revolving about the sun in an elliptical orbit, nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes. But if I were to go on to say that, since my assertion cannot be disproved, it is an intolerable presumption on the part of human reason to doubt it, I should rightly be thought to be talking nonsense. If, however, the existence of such a teapot were affirmed in ancient books, taught as the sacred truth every Sunday, and instilled into the minds of children at school, hesitation to believe in its existence would become a mark of eccentricity and entitle the doubter to the attentions of the psychiatrist in an enlightened age of of the Inquisitor in an earlier time.” [4]

As Russel points out, though we couldn’t prove that an undetectable teapot is orbiting the sun, we would rightfully accept that absence of evidence could lead us to the rational conclusion that there isn’t a such a teapot. We could apply this same logic to Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, the Easter Bunny, and many other mythical creatures. This affirms that the burden of proof is on my opponent to provide evidence, not on me to categorically disprove God, as obviously that is, in principle, an impossible task.

C4) Epicurean Paradox, Or Problem of Evil

The argument goes like this:

“If God is willing to prevent evil, but is not able to
Then He is not omnipotent.
If He is able, but not willing
Then He is malevolent.
If He is both able and willing
Then whence cometh evil.
If He is neither able nor willing
Then why call Him God?” [5]

To syllogize this argument:

P1) For the Christian God to exist, he must be omnibenevolent, omniscient, and omnipotent.
P2) If needless suffering exists, God either is not omnibenevolent or not omnipotent.
C1) Needless suffering exists, so it follows that God is either not omnibenevolent or not omnipotent. (Therefore, the resolution is negated)

We could take this argument a step further and not that, if God is omniscient, he knows that suffering will occur and when it will occur, so he is in a position to end it or at least mollify, yet he does not.

C5) Paradox of Free Will

Some people may offer as a defense to the Problem of Evil that God has given us free will. In order to sin, for instance, people must make a conscious choice to do wrong. Though the degree to which we have free will is subject to question, the Heinsenberg Uncertainty principle does suggest to us that some degree of free will exists.

However, there are several problems with this. First and foremost, per our definition of God, he is omniscient. This means he has complete and total knowledge of the past, present and future. If this is the case, then how could human beings have free will? Free will implies randomness, and we know from Heinsenberg that some degree of free will does in fact exist. He showed this to us and modelled mathematically by noting that we cannot concurrently know both the position and momentum of a particle and thus there is a certain degree of variability as to its position as it isn't subject to the laws of causality [6]. If randomness exists, God isn't omniscient.

The second problem with this, and why it doesn't refute the Problem of Evil, is that intervening to stop gratuitous suffering does not in fact violate anyone's free will. If a neonate is suffering and dying, a god would the ability to end his or her suffering. This infant hasn't done anything wrong, nor does it have the capacity to make a free choice. "Free will" doesn't even enter the fray until much later. Again, the argument stands: if God doesn't intervene but can, he isn't omnibenevolent. If God wants to intervene but can't, he isn't omnipotent.


I run low on time, so I'm going to save my remaining contentions for the next round. In the interim, I hope my opponent will return with his arguments.


Sources
[2] http://tinyurl.com...
[3] http://tinyurl.com...
[4] http://tinyurl.com...
[5] http://tinyurl.com...
[6] http://tinyurl.com...
Debate Round No. 2
DevoutChristian

Pro

DevoutChristian forfeited this round.
JohnMaynardKeynes

Con

*Sigh.* I was very much hoping for a serious debate on this subject.

I'll extend my arguments, which should be more than enough to negate this resolution. I have a few others, but I'll save those at the moment.
Debate Round No. 3
DevoutChristian

Pro

DevoutChristian forfeited this round.
JohnMaynardKeynes

Con

Unfortunately my opponent hasn't provided a single argument and thus hasn't responded to my contentions nor fulfilled his burden of proof.

I urge a CON ballot. Thank you for reading.
Debate Round No. 4
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by ben671176 2 years ago
ben671176
Sorry, and*
Posted by ben671176 2 years ago
ben671176
"If God does not exist, it would be necessary to invent him."
-Voltaire (1694-1778)

"It is undesirable to believe in a proposition when there is no ground whatever for supposing it is true."
-Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

So here is a metaphor.
So can you see George Washington? Or can you see what he did, And learn about him in a History book?
Same thing with God. You can see the Universe and learn about in a Bible.
Posted by JohnMaynardKeynes 2 years ago
JohnMaynardKeynes
Haha thanks man. I started typing while (I thought) my opponent was typing his, so I suppose I may have had a bit more than 30 minutes. I knew in a nutshell how I would approach the subject, so it was really a matter of typing it out.
Posted by Envisage 2 years ago
Envisage
This is 30 min/round?!?!

And you typed THAT??

That is amazing...
Posted by KhalifV 2 years ago
KhalifV
Damnit John, I was going to accept this. Resolutions that say " A christian god exists" are basically free wins.
11 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by Samreay 2 years ago
Samreay
DevoutChristianJohnMaynardKeynesTied
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Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by Codedlogic 2 years ago
Codedlogic
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Reasons for voting decision: I'm used to Thiest not providing sound arguments or evidence for their position. But I have to hand it to Pro, at least they didn't use any bad reasoning or fallacious arguments this time :)
Vote Placed by ben671176 2 years ago
ben671176
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Reasons for voting decision: FF.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: ff
Vote Placed by QandA 2 years ago
QandA
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Reasons for voting decision: Total forfeiture from Pro.
Vote Placed by Envisage 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: FF plus pretty swift arguments.
Vote Placed by Raymond_Reddington 2 years ago
Raymond_Reddington
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Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by dynamicduodebaters 2 years ago
dynamicduodebaters
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Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by Splenic_Warrior 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: I award conduct for the forfeit, arguments because Con made arguments, and sources because Con offered a source. I was actually hoping for a debate.
Vote Placed by KhalifV 2 years ago
KhalifV
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Reasons for voting decision: FF and Con presented a veritable plethora of brilliant arguments. We must also remember, by virtue of omniscience god has no free will either.