The Instigator
Con (against)
0 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
0 Points

The existence of God.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/23/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 803 times Debate No: 20585
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (1)
Votes (0)




Hey guys, this debate will be about whether God exists in reality, or not.

Debate Structure:

Round 1: Acceptance + Definitions.
Round 2: Arguments + Rebuttals.
Round 3: Arguments + Rebuttals.
Round 4: Arguments + Rebuttals.
Round 5: Rebuttals+ Closing statements/reaffirmations; no new arguments.

Debates Scope:

This debate will cover whether God exists in the reality.
This debate will primarily be about the juedo-christian God.
This debate shouldn't be about probability.


No vexatious semantics.
Follow debate structure - failure to do so is misconduct.


Pro wins if they have put the best arguments forth that God exists in reality.
Con wins if they have put the best arguments forth that God does not exist in reality, or they have succcessfully rebutted all of Pros arguments that are relevant(due to the burden of proof).

Burden of Proof: The burden of proof will be on Pro, as Pro is asserting the positive claim that: God exists in reality.



God: The God of the bible; this God has the characteristics of omnipotency, omnisciency, and so on.

Reality: "reality is the state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear or might be imagined." [1]

Universe: "The universe is commonly defined as the totality of everything that exists." [2]

I'm looking forward to a challenging and intellectual debate.





I accept this debate, but wish to contest your definition of God, in this opening round of definitions, since it includes omnipotency and omnisciency. Not all Christians, and certainly not all theists believe God to be both all-knowing and all-powerfull at all times. To best represent the diversity of interpretation of the Abrahamic texts, I would ask that the instigator make void the inclusions of omnipotency and omnisciency in the definition of "God". In support of this objection, I'll reference Judges 1:19, which could be understood as displaying a god that lacked the power to defeat those in possession of iron chariots, thus not being omnipotent.

Being new to this site, with this being my first debate, I'm still very much growing accustomed to the workings of this community, so I must ask your forgiveness for not submitting my issue with your definitions before accepting the debate. If the instigator would please be so generous as to honour my request of definition alteration (the removal of omnipotent and onmiscient from the definition of "God"), we could then continue this already underway debate, rather than have it ending without the enjoyment of thorough discussion.
Debate Round No. 1


It's alright, I'm new to this site as well: I'm sure we'll manage!

I consider it highly unorthodox for one to void 2 of Gods cardinal characteristics: Omnipotence and Omniscience. Nevertheless, since you are postulating the existence of God, I suppose I should let you be the arbiter of the definition of God. Conversely, you say: " believe God to be both all-knowing and all-powerful at all times" this does concede that God is at the very least sometimes omnipotent and omniscient. I won't spend too much longer on the definition, but I will make a point of your bible reference. It says (in my bible at least) that: "The people of Judah were not able to drive them out". Judges 1:19 makes mention that God helped the people of Judah, and also that the people of Judah failed. This does not imply that God is not omnipotent, for God can be able to do something, but not willing. It's interesting to note that even if you hold the position that God is not always omnipotent or omniscient, that still doesn't mean it's not a characteristic of God as you've just conceded that God is indeed omnipotent and omniscient, these abilities just seem to come and go, however.

Since you want to void omnipotence and omniscience, I won't argue it in this round. Here are some sources citing that God can be defined with these characteristics [1] [2] [3]

Evidence of Absence.

If God exists in reality, then we can observe God.
We can't observe God.
Therefore God doesn't exist in reality.

This is classical Modus tollens, and is a valid argument. This is a very primitive argument and the gist of it is that the evidence for the non-existence of God, is merely the lack of proof of his existence.

Science has searched indefatigably for the existence of God. There has been no evidence in support of his existence. This is like a needle in a haystack. If we want to find the needle in a haystack, we need to search for it. After hours of searching, we cannot find it. Is it therefore reasonable to conclude that their is infact no needle in the haystack? Yes, because we have evidence of the needles absence from the haystack.

Since I can't argue omnipotence or omniscience, I won't argue the omnipotence paradox, or the argument from free will. I will also leave this round short as I believe that an atheists 'job' should be centered more around rebuttals. I would ask Pro to please post his definition of God, and the attributes of God.



I thank my opponant for discarding the necessity of omnipotence and omniscience in the definition of the, "of the bible".

In response to "Evidence of Absence", not everything which may exist is immediatly observable. Pre-historic man would have had no method to confirm the existance of various microbiological creatures (such as cells and multiple forms of bacteria) through, specifically, observation, and yet we now know such things to exist in astronomical numbers. Had you held the same belief at that time, you would have come to the false conclusion that since you possess no method of observing microscopic creatures they positively didn't exist. By upholding the same standard that would have been faulty then, your standard of confirming non-existance is faulty now.

Now, voiding the portion of your definition of "God" that includes omnipotence and omniscience, the remaining specifics of the definition are, "The God of the bible". "And so on", may be voided, since it's a vague expression that presents no defining characteristics. In your definition of reality, you're clever enough to state that imagined things aren't considered to be in existance in reality.

However, God, being defined as "The God of the bible", can be demonstrated to exist by any individual or group who has access to a Bible, and possesses sight, the sense of touch, and the ability to read (either visually, or through brail). "The God of the bible", objectively exists as a written word, and meets the instigator's definition of being, "of the bible". This meets this debate's definition of existance in reality by not just being imaginary. Ink on paper, following the exact pattern of the word, "god", objectively exists in the physical world. I realize that this probably isn't the justification my opponant was expecting, but it does prove the existance of god to an extent that meets all of the given definitions, now that, "omnipotence", and, "omniscience", are voided from the definition.

I await the Con's response.


(not the date at which the microscope was invented)

(note the date at which the cell was discovered)

(note the references to "God")
Debate Round No. 2


My opponent has failed to come up with a definition of God. I'll begin to rebut what he has stated.

"In response to 'Evidence of Absence', not everything... your standard of confirming non-existence is faulty now." I notice that my opponent has not attacked any of my premises. Since my logic is valid, the conclusion must be true.

My opponent says: "Now, voiding the portion of your... considered to be in existance in reality". My opponent is relying on vexatious semantics and has already violated the rules of the debate. Also, it's not my definition of reality, it wikipedia's definition of reality and they have sourced it from Oxford.

"However, God, being defined as 'The God of the bible'... are voided from the definition." It is blatantly obvious that my opponent relies on vexatious semantics in order to try and win this debate, even though it is against the rules. While this is infuriating as instead of being intellectual, we are debating over words, I will continue. This debate scope is primarily about the "juedo-christian God". This God is synonymous with "The God of the bible". To be more precise, 'Yahweh' is: "the personal name of the God of Israel as described in the Hebrew Bible". [1] My opponent is arguing that 'Yahweh' is a string of words. I would ask my opponent to please substantiate this definition with proper sources (A dictionary for example).

Let us recap on what my opponent has done this round:

My opponent has violated the rules of the debate which is misconduct - he used vexatious semantics.
My opponent has ventured outside the primary scope of this debate.
My opponent defines Yahweh (synonymous with: the god of the bible), as a string of words without sources.
My opponents only arguments are semantcs.
My opponent has failed to rebut any of my premises in a valid logical argument; this implies concession to my argument.

I would urge my opponent to please abandon his semantics as they do not provide for any form of intellectual and rewarding debate, and instead, debate with proper arguments over the widely accepted definition of God which can be found in any dictionary.



"My opponant has failed to come up with a definition of God"

"God" was already defined by my opponant when he instigated this debate, as "the God of the bible; this God has the characteristics of omnipotency, omnisciency, and so on". Since my opponant agreed to void the portion of the definition that defined god as omnipotent and omniscient, the remaining definition is, "the God of the bible", which still stands, and doesn't require me to redefine.

"My opponant has not attacked any of my premises."

Actually, I rebuked the premise that that which exists in reality must be observable to exist. Unless my opponant was specifically stating that it's only God that needs to be observable to exist, which would by an unproven claim on his part, my refutation stands. With this premise rebuked, my opponant's logic-based argument is no longer valid.

"My opponant is relying on vexatious semantics"

I object to the standard against vexatious semantics for two reasons. Firstly, it suggests that semantics are only banned if they cause vexation. Since anyone, at any time, could claim vexation from one's semantics, it completely devalues the specification. Because of this, the only method in which "vexatious semantics", could be properly outlawed, to ensure no vexation, would be to outlaw all semantics. If all semantics, defined as "the study of words and their meanings", are banned, this entire bebate, as it was instigated, is now self-contradictory, since it's based upon definitions derived from the bible, which were translated and/or defined through semantics. Now since the entire debate is based upon the existance of a being, God, as he is semantically derived from the single source of the bible, which no doubt many find vexatious, this entire debate would then be in contradiction of its own rules.
Further still, and perhaps most importantly, I'd like to note that my opponant supported his argument with a link to an online dictionary, with a definition of "god". This is specifically and definitively the, "study of words [(the word "God", in this case)] and their meanings", and I find this vexatious, making my opponant also in violation of his rule. Further still, my opponant is now re-defining "God" as "Yahweh", and then using semantics based upon additional defination-based characteristics of Yahweh (which were not present in the initial agreed-upon definition of "god") to attack my arguments.

"Also, it's not my definition of reality"

I made no objection to the definition of reality provided by my opponant. In fact, I complimented him on its clarity, but I appreciate him citing his sources nonetheless.

"While this is infuriating"

I'd like to draw my opponant's attention to a comment that was made on this debate before I accepted it, by another member of this community, which stated that the instigator had set up a "straw man". I agree with this assessment of my opponant's debate instigation, and could very well find such a dishonourable instigation infuriating. Instead, I've kept my emotions in check, and have done my best to argue a position that is not my own (I'm also a non-believer) through the only method that I believe could justify the position I'm arguing for (the existance of god).
I would request that my opponant treat his opposing Pro with respect, since I have attempted, and continue to attempt, to argue a position that is not my own in the most intellectually honest way that I can (instead of just presenting Kalam or something, and waiting for my opponant to knock it down, which was what my opponant was apparently, and if so dishonourably, expecting).

"This god is synonymous with..... the Hebrew Bible"

My opponant is attempting to re-define a definition that was established at the beginning of the debate. If readers of this debate would please noticce, this is very poor conduct on the part of my opponant.

"My opponant is arguing that 'Yahweh' is a string of words"

I am doing no such thing. I am arguing that "God" is a string of letters, which demonstrably and objectively exist in the physical and "real" world as structures of ink and paper. The definition of "God" that was agreed upon at the start of this debate was, "the God of the bible". Since the word, "god", can be found in the bible (bible wasn't defined by the instigator, so it could be any bible, such as an English one, which would title the deity as, "god", rather than "Yahweh"), "God" which is "of the bible", exists.

"I would ask that my opponant please substantiate this definition with a proper source"

This definition ("the God of the bible") was presented by the instigator, and edited with the removal of "omnipotency" and "omnisciency" with the consent of instigator. If my opponant requests a source for this definition, I'd ask that he, himself, provide it.

"My opponant has ventured outside of the primary scope of this debate"

I request that my opponant explain what the primary scope of this debate is, then, and where, exactly, in his opening he clarified this exact scope which I have ventured outside of.

"My opponant defines Yahweh (synonymous with: god of the bible), as a string of words without sources."

Firstly, my opponant is clearly using semantics here, which is in direct violation of his own rules. "Yahweh" was not present in the opening of this debate, yet my opponant is now presenting it through re-definition and SEMANTICS. Secondly, I ask my opponant to quote exactly where I said that "Yahweh" was a string of words (plural).

"My opponant has failed to rebute any of my premises"

I wish to note that I have, in fact, rebuted my opponants premise that existing things are necessarily observable. Or, if my opponant was specifically claiming that only God had to be observable to exist, that my opponant was making an unsupported claim. Thirdly, actually, I would like to draw attention to the fact that the god I have demonstrated to exist is in fact observable (the structure of ink and paper in that particular form is both observable and easily recognisable), making this aspect of my opponant's entire argument pointless anyway.

"I would urge my opponant to please abandone his semantics...... debate with proper arguments"

I would urge my opponant to please give examples of "proper arguments" for the existance of god that I may emulate for him, bearing in mind that Kalam, TAG, the Ontological argument, and the Ray Comfort arguments are all already widely refuted.


(a picture of a bible, showing the observable existance of various physical words within it) god
Debate Round No. 3


My opponent has insisted on defining God as "the God of the bible". This is an unacceptable definition as he is using the word he is trying to define in his definition. While I admit that I allowed my opponent to be the arbiter of the definition, it's sad that he does not wish to engage in an intellectual debate. As it stands, we must cut the word 'God' from my opponents shortened definition: "the of the bible". This makes no sense, and I would urge my opponent to think of a better definition for God as he seems to avoid a dictionary.

My opponent seems to advocate that what exists in reality can be unobservable. This is folly as it is unfalsifiable. In fact, my opponent is not really advocating this posiiton at all, in round 2, he gave an example in support of my premise: " not everything which may exist is immediatly observable" Immediately observable. This implies that what exists is observable, but not immediately.

The God, defined by my opponent as 'the of the bible' (a nonsensical definition, I know). My opponent needs to realize that this is entirely a Red Herring fallacy. This debates primary scope is about the judeo-Christian God. As it stands, my opponent is not arguing the existence of Yahweh, he is instead arguing the existence of the formation of ink on paper. It appears my opponent seeks to argue something other than the intention of this debate. It's rather sad that my opponent would seek to waste my time like this,

My opponent says I am violating my rule on vexatious semantics. I shall let the voters be the judge of this.

My opponent says I am re-defining the word 'God'. This is not true, I am using a synonym. "Yahweh is the name of the God in the Bible" [1]. Further, my opponent is defining this God (Yahweh) as a string of words (the of the bible) shown in his only argument entirely immersed in semantics.

My opponent has commited the appeal to authority fallacy in attempting to use a comment in aid of his case.

My opponent asks me to treat him with respect yet he knows I am infuriated with his conduct. My opponent continues to say that he attemps and continues to attempt to argue 'in the most intellectually honest way' he can. This implies that my opponent is not arguing in an intellectually and honest way, he is merely trying to. I applaud my opponent in his effort, but would ask that he do instead of try.

My opponent says I'm re-defining a definition. I said explicitly that I used synonyms. re-defining is not the same as synonyms.

My opponent said he is arguing that 'the of the bible' is a string of letters, it is also a string of words. My opponent needs to realize that I never ever agreed on the definition that God can be defined as 'the of the bible', I merely allowed my opponent the be the arbiter of the definition in the hopes that he would exercise good judgement and conduct and provide for an intellectual debate.

Alright, I am willing to provide a definition for "The God of the bible". It can be found here
This definition is not consistent with my opponents.

The scope of the debate is outlined in round 1. Specifically: "This debate will primarily be about the juedo-christian God."

My opponent says I am 'not presenting it through re-definition and semantics'. My opponent needs to realize that I am using synonyms. Yahweh is clearly referred to as the god of the bible.

My opponent wants me to give examples of proper arguments. I am unable to do so as their are no valid and sound arguments for the existence of God. Evidence of this can be shown by my opponents choice of argument: vexatious semantics (CLEARLY against the rules).

A recap of what has happned this round:

My opponent defines God as: the of the bible.
My opponent has comitted the Red Herring fallacy by arguing outside the debate scope.
My opponent has violated the rule of "No vexatious semantics"
My opponent through dot points 2 and 3 is committing egregious misconduct.
My opponent has supported the premise for my argument.



HippieGuitarBoy forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4


Since my opponent has forfeited their 4th round, I'll just summarize what has happened throughout this debate:
  • My opponent has defined God as 'the of the bible'.
  • My opponent has broken the rule of 'no vexatious semantics' shown in the above dot point.
  • My opponents only rebuttal for my argument is one that strengthens my premise.
  • My opponent has made no arguments for the existence of the judeo-christian God, this debates primary scope.
  • My opponents only arguments commits the Red Herring Fallacy with regards to the intended scope of the debate.
  • My opponent has forfeited round 4 for reasons unbeknown to me.
  • My opponent has commited egregious misconduct by violating the rules of the debate.

In short:
  • My opponent has made no arguments.
  • My opponent has made no rebuttals.
  • My opponent has conducted himself sardonically throughout the debate.


HippieGuitarBoy forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Neonix 6 years ago
Straw Man....
No votes have been placed for this debate.