The Instigator
TheRussian
Pro (for)
Winning
24 Points
The Contender
ViceRegent
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The Universe is 13.8 billion years old

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
TheRussian
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/4/2016 Category: Science
Updated: 10 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,657 times Debate No: 86005
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (94)
Votes (5)

 

TheRussian

Pro

I will not be arguing that the universe is exactly 13.8 billion years as this is very difficult. However, I will be arguing that the "scientific worldview" of the age of the universe is very reasonable and that the age of the universe can be measured in millions and billions of years, not thousands.

I expect (though not require) that my opponent will be a creationist who will be arguing that the universe (and Earth) is several thousands years old, and my opponent may present his/her arguments in the first Round. No new arguments may be introduced in the last Round. Any questions will be answered in the comments.
ViceRegent

Con

Prove it.
Debate Round No. 1
TheRussian

Pro

Thank you for accepting the challenge.

My claim will rest primarily on the following argument:

We know that light travels, in a vacuum, at a speed of about 299,792 kilometers per second. In a vacuum (which space essentially is), the speed of light does not change. So here is the logic. If we see celestial objects that are millions or billions of light years away (one galaxy is found to be an incredible 13.3 billion light years away), we know that it took light that amount of time to get to the Earth. As a result, we know that those objects have existed for that amount of time.
http://www.space.com...
http://www.space.com...

Result: The universe is billions of years old.

I curiously await my opponent's response.
ViceRegent

Con

It is interesting seeing what my opponent claims to know when, in reality, his argument is built on a number of question begging (read illogical) assumptions. We shall illustrate one of them. My opponent assumes that whatever the speed of light was today, it was yesterday, the day before, the day before that and so on. He has no scientific basis for this assumption because no one was able to observe the speed of light, say, 6000 years ago. Thus, this choice is arbitrary. If he can make an arbitrary assumption to reach his desired conclussion, so can I and say that the speed of light has been gradually diminishing over time such that if we were able to calculate it, we would see that the evidence from the light from distant stars has been traveling only about six thousand years. See how this works?

He also assumes that light cannot be created independent of its source, which is fine, but as Christians, we make the opposite assumption based on the Biblical creation narriative. If light was created independen of its source then his math becomes useless.

Here is a good article that presents these articles better than I: https://answersingenesis.org...

Next argument?
Debate Round No. 2
TheRussian

Pro

Please present your evidence that the natural laws can change. This is what your idea rests on, the changing of natural laws throughout time. Then show me that they can change. We've never seen it, we've never seen any evidence of it happening in the past.

I do have scientific proof of my claims. My claims rest on the fact that light has been observed and tested. The hypothesis that the speed of light doesn't change in a vacuum is absolutely falsifiable (unlike the existence of God), and it has never been falsified. It fits the scientific method.

Indeed, I have heard the ideas that God "spawned" the galaxies with their light halfway to Earth or whatever but this is absurd! Such a cop out! Why would God do this? Why would your kind God want to trick you?

Also, you tell me to prove God doesn't exist. This is logically impossible, however I will present the following argument. It seems that you think that God is omnipotent. So then tell me, can God create a rock that even he cannot lift?
ViceRegent

Con

Did you not read my response?

I did not say anything about laws changing, but that you claim is built upon an arbitrary assumption, which if rejected, causes your argument to fail. Next time, respond to what your opponent actually says, and not just spew the nonsenses you are propagandized to believe.

What makes that idea absurd? I bet he cannot tie the idea into absurdity. Rather, he just do not like it and have no answer for when someone rejects his assumptions that he pretends is science.

I showed you in the comments that you claim that you cannot prove a negative is false. But if you admit that you cannot prove God does not exist, why do you claim it? If this claim does not rest on rational grounds, it must rest on irrational grounds. As to your silly Q, look up category error and get back to me.

Now where is this scientific proof the earth is 13.8 billion years old. Stop with the red herrings and prove that claim?
Debate Round No. 3
TheRussian

Pro

I did, indeed, read your argument very carefully. Your idea about light slowing down has never been observed and would be a change in the natural laws of the universe. You said that "My opponent assumes that whatever the speed of light was today, it was yesterday, the day before, the day before that and so on." Yes, because natural laws don't change overnight. Suggesting that the speed of light changes is saying that the laws that govern our universe change from day to day (or over some period of time).

Please answer my two questions.

1) Why would such a kind God want to trick everyone on Earth by making it look like the universe is very old?

2) Can God make a rock that even he cannot lift?

You completely ignored both, presumably because you have no good answer to either one as you cannot pull the "God did it" cop out like you do for everything else.

You say a person CAN prove a negative, like the one about God. Well, if you prove to me that there isn't an invisible, intangible, undetectable alien behind you at all times, I can prove to you that there is no God.
ViceRegent

Con

You keep missing the point. You have no idea what the speed of light was before people started measuring it. Given this, you depart from science, which mandates observation, and assume that the speed of light is constant. This assumption is not grounded in science, making it arbitrary. If you can arbitrary choose one assumption, I can arbitrarily choose another. When we use my assumption, the data supports my conclusion that the earth is approximate 6K years old.

The speed of light is not a law of the universe, BTW. Now, you claim that that the speed of light slowing down has never been observed. While there is data to indicate to the contrary, let us assume that is true. So? Has the speed of light prior to, say, 1650 been observed? Nope. This is why you are making an arbitrary assumption. Reject that assumption and your argument fails.

But I do thank you for confirming that you have no basis to claim God creating light in transit is "absurd", that such is merely an emotional response of one who really has no logical reason behind anything they claim to be true.

So, where is your objective proof that the earth is 13.8B years old. So far, you have merely begged the question.
Debate Round No. 4
TheRussian

Pro

"You have no idea what the speed of light was before people started measuring it."
Whether we measure it or not makes no difference. If a tree falls in the woods and you're not there to hear it, does it make a sound? Of course it does.

"Now, you claim that that the speed of light slowing down has never been observed."
No, I claim that the speed of light doesn't change IN A VACUUM.

"But I do thank you for confirming that you have no basis to claim God creating light in transit is 'absurd'"
My basis for its absurdity is in the form of a question, which you have now ignored twice.

My two questions still stand unanswered either as a result of blindness (in which case you should pay a visit to the doctor), cowardice or lack of an answer.

1) Why would such a kind God want to trick everyone on Earth by making it look like the universe is very old?

2) Can God make a rock that even he cannot lift?

If you are a troll, then congratulations because you do it very well. However, I ask that you don't accept any of my debate challenges anymore as this is a waste of my time. That is, unless you begin to argue more reasonably.
ViceRegent

Con

Now notice this foolishness. His entire argument is premised on not only the speed of light being constant throughout time, but that he can accurate measure that speed. Now he says that the measurement is not relevant. He is confused.

A real scientist who understands the limits of science would say that we have never observed the speed of light changing, but that does not imply it did not change in the past. He will never say this because a) he is not a real scientist and b) because it is an admission against interest that defeats his claim and exposes that he is making the arbitrary assumption I accused him of.

Again, since his argument is based on an arbitrary assumption which he has not only failed to prove, but cannot prove scientifically (that darn requirement of observation again), we are free to reject that assumption and when we do, his argument falls apart.

This dude has failed to carry his BOP and loses the debate.
Debate Round No. 5
94 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by WhineyMagiciann5 10 months ago
WhineyMagiciann5
You just hit a new low point vice. Your attacking someone who is trying to be nice to you. Thats just bad.
@Brian Please dont mind vice, he has the attitude of a troll but is serious about it. While we may have different beliefs you seem like the k d of person i would enjoy to meet!
Posted by ViceRegent 10 months ago
ViceRegent
It is time for me to stop casting pearls before swine.
Posted by ViceRegent 10 months ago
ViceRegent
"I am humble enough already". Enough said. Moving on.
Posted by Briannj17 10 months ago
Briannj17
It is not up to me who is saved and who isn't. You talk of humility and yet you call others mentally retarded. I never said I myself am saved, but the grace of God knows no bounds. We are called upon to be witnesses and proclaimers, not judges or hypocrites. I am humble enough already.
Why not rebuke what I said instead of the way you believe that I'm acting?
I told you what the verse means, I told you Jesus said save judgment to the Lord. Why change the subject?
Posted by ViceRegent 10 months ago
ViceRegent
Brian, you lack of humility and ignorance of Scripture confirms your youth in the faith, assuming you are saved at all. Get humble and I will teach you many truths.
Posted by Briannj17 10 months ago
Briannj17
http://www.gotquestions.org...
It was Jesus who judged what is swine you fool!
http://www.teachingtheword.org...
It was also Jesus who said to save the judgment to the Lord.
Also all the men WILL know God. Not everybody knows God.
Posted by Seanyboy 10 months ago
Seanyboy
I've been reading through these comments and wow are they funny. Apparently we already "know the truth" whatever that means.
Posted by squonk 10 months ago
squonk
Everybody, realize you're talking to a man who thinks "all men know God" because "Romans 1." Seriously, that's his reason: "Romans 1." That's evidence enough for ViceRegent.

ViceRegent will stay on the offensive. He will make his pathetic attempts to criticize the atheist worldview, insult atheists personally, and threaten them with hellfire. But will he participate in a reasonable discussion? Will he acknowledge and address criticism of his beliefs? Will he attempt to DEFEND his own perspective? Of course not.

Hey VR, do you want me to intellectually checkmate you again? Then you can "move on."
Posted by ViceRegent 10 months ago
ViceRegent
Obviously, one cannot obey the command to not cast peals before swine if one cannot judge who is swine and who is not. And no, the Bible commands us to judge one another. Are you new to the Christian faith?

BTW, all men know God. Romans 1.
Posted by Briannj17 10 months ago
Briannj17
Yes but who are you to judge what is swine? It is also written it is not up to us to judge one another. We are also told to spread the word to all the nations. Another point is regarding the truth. We know the truth is God and His word. Therefore there will be those who don't know truth. I believe it is up to us to give our perspectives full of thought and consideration for those who don't know Him.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by TheEpicTricycle 10 months ago
TheEpicTricycle
TheRussianViceRegentTied
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Con was just a disspointment and dodged all of pro's arguments and challenges, based their argument on unfounded assertions, and then cited answers in genesis as their sole souce.
Vote Placed by zman8881 10 months ago
zman8881
TheRussianViceRegentTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con didn't present any actual arguments, instead just disrespectfully dodging each point or question that the Pro raised. This is an obvious victory for Pro, with Con not presenting any actual argument himself.
Vote Placed by diarrhea_of_a_wimpy_kid 10 months ago
diarrhea_of_a_wimpy_kid
TheRussianViceRegentTied
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Reasons for voting decision: This weird debate centered around measuring the speed of light. Con fails to realize that the light we measure at this moment, from each star in the universe, was created at a different moment in time, every second. The age of the light varies directly by the distance that light traveled; it does not vary by the date it was measured. The red herring in the debate was Con's assertion that light may change speed. And even if it did, the relative measurement of that light really has no bearing on the current observations. Let's say all light sped up or all light slowed down. The observer's position would change as well. the universe can have some weird stuff in it, but the hypothetical assumption that some weird stuff may have occurred, does not disprove the 13.8 billion argument. Came for the comments and popcorn, stayed for the arguments.
Vote Placed by JayShay 10 months ago
JayShay
TheRussianViceRegentTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro simply made better arguments. Con repeatedly dodged Pro's questions and was disrespectful. Con gave no reason that we should think that light changes its speed in a vacuum.
Vote Placed by kkjnay 10 months ago
kkjnay
TheRussianViceRegentTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con is aware of logical fallacies and attempted incorrectly to apply them to scientific facts. There have been experiments which consistently point to the constant speed of light as in E=MC^2. The burden of proof is on Pro, you are right about that, however there is proof and you choose to ignore that proof and continue with your illegitimate fallacy argument.