The Instigator
TheSkeptic
Pro (for)
Tied
23 Points
The Contender
DiablosChaosBroker
Con (against)
Tied
23 Points

These Arguments Against the God of Christianity Are Valid - 1E.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/11/2009 Category: Religion
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,197 times Debate No: 6889
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (10)

 

TheSkeptic

Pro

*NOTE* - The "1E" notation is for searching/browsing purposes. I hope to have more of these debates.

The resolution is simple and brief: I am here to argue that the God of the Bible and thus the teaching of Christianity does not exist, i.e. has no solid evidence for it's existence.

Common attributes given to this God is omnipotence, omniscience, omnibenevolence , omnipresence, and many others. These 4 "omni-attributes", however, is what I will be focusing upon.

=====Arguments=====

For this debate I will be utilizing two popular arguments: the Argument from Evil and the Argument from Non-Belief.

1. Argument from Evil

If an all-loving God exists, then why does evil and suffering exist in the world? Christians commonly use free will as an excuse for the evil in the world. But then, the burden is placed on my opponent to show why God would prefer us having free will rather than us not having free will, or having free will with moral perfection.

Secondly, the Christian has to somehow account for natural disasters that cause millions of deaths, tons of parasites that feed on humans, and of course bacteria and viruses. While some bacterias and viruses are human-made or proliferated, it's foolish to say every virus and bacteria does. So what of the virus that kills an infant in 4 months?

2. Argument from Non-Belief

I will paste the syllogism that Theodore Drange[1] formulated, based on J.L. Schellenberg's original formation of this argument:

1. If God exists, God:
1. wants all humans to believe God exists before they die;
2. can bring about a situation in which all humans believe God exists before they die;
3. does not want anything that would conflict with and be at least as important as its desire for all humans to believe God exists before they die; and
4. always acts in accordance with what it most wants.
2. If God exists, all humans would believe so before they die (from 1).
3. But not all humans believe God exists before they die.
4. Therefore, God does not exist (from 2 and 3).

=====Conclusion=====

With both my arguments laid out, I await my opponent's rebuttal.

---References---
1. http://www.infidels.org...
DiablosChaosBroker

Con

I thank for the opportunity for my opponent to challenge me and for creating this debate.

Before I begin, I would like to point out that why my opponent wanted to have this debate. He says that his intention ws to "that the God of the Bible and thus the teaching of Christianity does not exist, i.e. has no solid evidence for it's existence."

Does he mean that the God of the Bible doesn't exist or that the teachings of Christianity doesn't? It would seem more likely the former, because we have huge amounts of teaching of Christianity right from the Bible.

He also mentions that the teachings of Christianity has no solid evidence for it's existence. While that may be true, the resolution is clearly states as "These Arguments Against the God of Christianity Are Valid." Therefore, this debate should be whether the arguments against the God of Christianity are valid or not.

=====Counterarguments=====

First, we shall be discussing the argument of evil.

"If an all-loving God exists, then why does evil and suffering exist in the world?"

Since we are talking about the Christian God, not any other god, let's see what the Bible has to say. We opponent seems to claim that a perfect, loving God must create a universe that is perfect. However, nowhere in the Bible
that the universe was created to be perfect.

In fact, God called it "good" (1) and "very good" (2), but never said it was "perfect." The Bible states that the current universe is not perfect, but was designed to be temporary (3) and will be replaced with a perfect universe that will be permanent (4).

Therefore, according to Christianity, the purpose of the universe was not for humans to be morally or physically perfect, but to provide a place where spiritual creatures can choose to love or reject God - to live with Him forever in a new, perfect universe, or reject Him and live apart from Him for eternity. It would not be possible to make this choice in a universe in which moral choices are restricted to only good choices. One cannot choose between good and bad if bad did not exist.

"Secondly, the Christian has to somehow account for natural disasters that cause millions of deaths, tons of parasites that feed on humans, and of course bacteria and viruses."

Why don't I give statistics about how much they negatively impacts our lives?

Meteorites: 0%
Earthquakes: 0.02%
Volcanoes: 0.2%
Landslides: 0.02%
Floods: 0.03%
Hurricanes: 1%
Tornadoes: .006%
Lightning: 0.00004%
Fires: 0.1%
Genetic diseases: 1.3%
Cancer: 0.5%
Infectious diseases: 0.06% (deaths)
Total: 3.2% of the whole human population. (5)

The physical processes that cause natural "evil" are the same ones required for the proper functioning of the universe and the existence of sentient life given the laws of physics and the nature of quantum events.

So the laws of physics require the existence of all natural evils defined by atheists, but it is still possible that God could have chosen different laws of physics. It is my opponent's burden to show that substantially different laws of physics
can still produce a universe in which sentient creatures would be allowed to make moral choices. His created laws of physics must allow the following requirements:

1. The universe must allow for the existence of sentient creatures.
2. These sentient creatures must have the ability to make moral choices such as choosing whether to commit an unlawful act or not.
3. The universe must operate by physical laws that are reliable, so that the sentient creatures will be able to interact reliably with their surroundings and each other.
4. The universe must declare the power and glory of God.

Question: Well, if God is omnipotent and omniscient, every time something bad was about to happen, God would personally intervene and stop it, right?

Answer: We wouldn't be able to understand science since it would be impossible to determine how the laws of physics operated. God's interference would make measurements unreliable, since he would be constantly stopping every natural disaster from harming anyone. In addition, if God constantly interfered, people would get used to being rescued and would get lazy, expecting God to bail them out when they failed to act responsibly.

My opponent seems to be stuck on the idea that a perfect God must design a physically-perfect universe, even though the universe we live in is perfectly designed as a place to choose between good and evil. This is why God designed a two universe model - a temporary universe dominated by choice, and the second, eternal universe designed to optimize interpersonal relationships between believers and God.

2. Argument from Non-Belief

Here's my response:

1. If God exists, God:
A. Desires all humans to believe in God before they die;
B. Does not force anyone to believe in God even at the time when Jesus was alive;
C. Benevolence is only obtained through pure freedom, not forced belief, as provided by God;
D. Freedom of thought and belief, always leads to conflicts and debate, regardless of truth and reality;
E. Chooses to allow mankind to govern his own mind without forced influence;
F. Cannot bring a situation in which all humans will believe in God before they die without violating people's free will;
2. If God exists, many humans would still not believe before they die (from Premise 1).
3. There is no contradiction between Premise 1 and Premise 2.
4. Therefore, the non-belief of God fails to establish the non-existence of God.

=====Conclusion=====
Both arguments (Argument from Evil and Non-belief) fail to disprove the existence of the Christian God.

Sources:
1. Genesis 1:10
2. Genesis 1:31
3. Revelation 21:1
4. Isaiah 65:17
5. http://www.godandscience.org...
Debate Round No. 1
TheSkeptic

Pro

>>>Does he mean that the God of the Bible doesn't exist or that the teachings of Christianity doesn't? It would seem more likely the former, because we have huge amounts of teaching of Christianity right from the Bible.<<<

----> Yes, I indeed worded this bad. Fortunately, my opponent has not played a semantics game and understood what I meant. Onto the debate!

=====Counterarguments=====

My opponent copied my formatting. Did he do this before? I can't remember. Oh well, it's cool :)

1. This world is meant as a test for the next

This is quite simple to refute - why would God prefer for us to be "tested" instead of being morally perfect and all being out of harms way and eventually into heaven? This is the same as if you were to reply with the free will defense - it is your burden to show why God would desire for a big "test" rather than having us all being without suffering and going to heaven.

2. Natural disasters

I'm sorry, but this argument is just off. Not only do you preposterously say that since natural disasters take up a minuscule amount of total deaths we should LOOK THE OTHER WAY, you actually say it's my burden to produce the model of another universe to you. Simply hilarious.

A. Natural disasters

My opponent comes up with the total of 3.2% deaths caused by natural disasters. This doesn't specify whether it means per year or in all, but this can definitely be calculated to range over MILLIONS. Now let me ask you - if God demanded a human sacrifice every 10 years would we call him benevolent? Would we call him good? NO. Just because natural disasters don't take up the majority of deaths DOESN'T mean there is still evil in the world. It's insane to say something is not evil just because it doesn't happen a lot.

B. A world of different physical laws

This one is even worse. Let me ask you, do I SEEM like an omnipotent and omniscient being to you? Are you saying that it is IMPOSSIBLE for an ALL-POWERFUL God to create another world where the physical constraints do NOT need natural disasters? This is insane - you have actually refuted God be contradicting his definitions. You say an all-powerful God that is restricted by logic (probably?) can not create an alternative universe where physical laws allow for no natural disasters or diseases.

I do NOT have to produce to you the formula of such a universe because, quite frankly, not only do I and every human being NOT have knowledge of this, but it doesn't matter. A god that can do all and knows all would CERTAINLY know how to do this. Are you saying it's impossible to have a world where there will be no disasters and it still can function? You seriously saying that?

Quite simply, my opponent has not refuted the Argument from Evil ( we haven't lifted off from the basic arguments) and instead makes an egregious argument of claiming a world without natural disasters is IMPOSSIBLE. A heavy burden for my opponent to uphold.

2. Argument from Non-Belief

Well, my opponent puts forth a syllogism in response to the argument from non-belief. While I would have preferred for him to go ahead and just attack whatever premise he desires from the one I presented, I'll just gladly do it to his syllogism.

The first and quite large premise my opponent uses has many holes and burdens he hasn't fulfilled. His main argument is the Free Will Defense - a common and popular defense. So here I shall tackle the FWD:

1. Revealing something to a person does not "violate their free will". By revealing the truth to people, God can fulfill people's will or desire for the truth. If someone anonymously gave you a Ferrari, that wouldn't violate your free will but make you freaking happy. Do realize that God doesn't have to flat come out and explicitly reveal himself - in the Information Age he can do many subtle things like have angels everywhere preach or spread convincing pamphlets over the internet. Saying that every time someone is shown something they have their free will violated is ridiculous.

2. If free will is supposed to be the highest priority, then God doesn't seem to care much about it in the Bible. There are countless stories of God killing people (that CERTAINLY violates someone free will when you kill them) or performing miracles as Jesus. God can easily do these miracles in a wide-spread fashion. So why is free will many times NOT a priority in the Bible?

3. The FWD seems to say that God wants people to believe in him irrationally, such as faith. Now I'm sure my opponent and other Christian apologetic on this site believe in God through reason and evidence, but the FWD disposes them to belief irrationality. For example, if God made the evidence so clear that any simple rational mind will know who he is from looking at the evidence, then this would be strong evidence and thus no more rational dis-belief (for example, making the scriptures prophesies with amazing accuracy and detail). In fact, Christians say that the evidence is supposed to be in the wonderful design of the universe, world, etc. However, saying that God giving strong evidence for his existence violates free will is then contradictory to the earlier claims Christians make of rationally believing in God.

=====Conclusion=====

I have refuted my opponent's theodicy for the argument from evil and from the argument from non-belief. The consistent defense from free will has a lot of holes in fact, and I await my opponent's answer eagerly.
DiablosChaosBroker

Con

DiablosChaosBroker forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
TheSkeptic

Pro

Whether it be purpose or accident, I don't know. But my opponent has unfortunately forfeited and thus you should vote for PRO.
DiablosChaosBroker

Con

DiablosChaosBroker forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by TheSkeptic 8 years ago
TheSkeptic
"the skeptic there is suffering in our world because we as his creations sin, do your research man"

Read my argument man, I addressed it.
Posted by Alex 8 years ago
Alex
the skeptic there is suffering in our world because we as his creations sin, do your research man
Posted by GodSands 8 years ago
GodSands
"3. But not all humans believe God exists before they die.
4. Therefore, God does not exist (from 2 and 3)." -- This is very simple and straight forward. Its terminology is very basic. It really isn't this simple. God has given us free will, in that if we choose not there to be God, God will allow that. Even so God still goes the 90% of the way, where as you only need to go 10% of the way. The 10% intails, a want to know God personally. The proof of God is there already but with the 10% gap between you and God, you will look at the proof in vanity, you have been blinded by sin from the start. To know God you need to release and let go of that 90% of sin, take that commitment, that 10% left over from the 90% and connect it with God. Jesus has delt with that sinful 10% by dying on the cross and rising again, 3 days later. This is how God will be known and proven.

You may still say God does not exist - Say that with out sinning.
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