Is Atheism True?
Dr. Brent Maundy
Mike Rebuttal 2: Brent's false belief that his god is "not bound by man's finite logic" appears to arise from a desperate defense mechanism that would rather have a god more akin to something out of Alice in Wonderland (i.e., not subject to man's finite logic) than a god that can be meaningfully discussed. If logic doesn't apply or constrain god, then the law of non-contradiction need not apply, in which case god could be both god and not god at the same time in the same way. How open is Brent to the possibility that such illogical things might be true about god? Not at all. So while Brent is preaching about how far above logic his god is, he secretly realizes the utter foolishness that would abound if he were to be taken seriously.
Brent Rebuttal 3: I begin by noting that Mike still does not understand what is meant by man’s finite logic and by extension finite reasoning. Finite means its limited, less than infinity. A simple demonstration of this comes from the fact that as human beings, we cannot do 10 tasks simultaneously, let alone run a Universe. We cannot predict the future, nor can we change the past. In fact we have very limited power in the scheme of things. Mike goes way off course because he assumes man in on par with God logically speaking. Let me reiterate once again, God has infinite knowledge, and power. What does “not God” mean? That is illogical according to my finite mind.
Mike Rebuttal 2: Brent's ridiculous belief in a god-above-logic also necessarily implies that language about god that is subject to human logic, such as human language will not be able to meaningfully impart knowledge of god. If god is above human logic, then human language will never be adequate to impart to the human mind a correct picture of god, at which point such limitations in human language defeat any attempted discussion of god. But no, Brent continues to use human language about god as if this is supposed to be regarded by other humans as a correct portrayal of a god that cannot be adequately defined by limited human logic language.
Brent Rebuttal 3: This point makes no sense. Can a finite number be used to describe infinity? No, obviously not. Can our language describe God is full detail? No it cannot. That however, does not negate the fact that one cannot try to describe God or his attributes such as love, fatherhood, mercy, justice, powerful, omnipotent, etc. In fact its foolhardy to not ascribe to God what can be easily observed in nature and in our own bodies.
Mike Rebuttal 2: I have never stated or implied that god's omnipotence derives from the mere fact that many things are logically possible. I said the proper definition of omnipotence is an ABILITY TO DO whatever is logically possible. Brent mischaracterizes my definition by leaving out the "ability to do" part.
Brent Rebuttal 3: Again Mike is stuck on the notion that God much come down to his level. This trait friends I should add is characteristic of all atheists. God must be as logical as he Mike it. Mike is imposing a definition on God that states “…omnipotence is an ABILITY TO DO whatever is logically possible”. What is wrong with this statement? 10-9-8-7-…You guessed it, “whatever is logically possible”. For the umpteen time God gave us limited powers of reason and limited ability to learn and use logic, but he is not constrained by what he has given us. In short God does not have to obey logic as man defines it. We see this in everyday life. Why do babies have to die, or why do good people die young and the wicked seem to thrive or why does X get cancer in a family and Y does not? The list of questions without answers is long. It shows us that we have finite knowledge, finite understanding, we are fragile and furthermore we have very little control over our lives. A fact that Mike sitting at the other end of his computer, railing against a God he thinks doesn’t exist ignores.
Mike Rebuttal 2: that is not helpful in the least, since we are debating whether the god of classical theism constitutes a logical impossibility. God's actions being governed by his own discretion does nothing to advance this discussion.
Brent Rebuttal 3: I beg to differ. It is the crust of my argument. God by definition is far above in knowledge and power of his creatures. The snail doesn’t sit and say to himself, I don’t believe in human beings because they are a logical impossibility, even if his eyesight is poor.
Mike Rebuttal 2: correct, it doesn't relate to god being capable of anything logically possible, it relates to god having infallible exhaustive foreknowledge, one of the divine attributes that was the subject of the syllogism in my opening speech. If god has infallible exhaustive foreknowledge, then the scenes in that foreknowledge cannot fail to come to pass in real life.
Brent Rebuttal 3: Incorrect because as I have reiterated God is outside of space and time. God sees all possibilities.
Mike Rebuttal 2: Yet we see many times in scripture that god changed his mind or delayed the original date he planned to do something. Did god infallibly foreknow the true date Hezekiah would die?
Brent Rebuttal 3: Yes to Mike’s question. Friends Mike ignores the fact that many times in the old testament, we see the ancient authors writing as little children would write. That is as little ones who saw God though limited lenses with a limited understanding of God. Or as a child would see his father imposing rules and regulations that the child does not like.
Mike Rebuttal 2: If so, how can scripture be correct to say that god "added" 15 years to his life? That could only mean that god "added" 15 years to the date god infallibly foreknew Hezekiah would die. The only way to preserve the Christian view of scriptural accuracy and yet explain this data is to say that God wanted Hezekiah to believe he got a 15 year life-extension, when god did not regard those last 15 years as a true extension. In which case we have a god who gives a false impression to Hezekiah that his own death is imminent, when in fact god doesn't believe that to be the case.
Brent Rebuttal 3: Again we see the old testament writers who did not know God writing AS THEY SAW IT. Not as it actually was. As history tells us, Marcion a Catholic priest (AD144) got fooled just like Mike is being fooled into thinking that the God of the God testament is different (as in wicked, merciless) and hence contradictory to the loving God of the New testament. We know this heresy as Marcionism. Mike apparently does not know of it, believing that God of the old testament gave Hezekiah a 15 year extension of his life.
In Summary I wish to close off this debate by saying that Mike has failed to prove that atheism is true beginning with his fictional argument on the delaying of Mary’s pregnancy. Mikes fails to support his case by assuming that a) God is as logical as he is and must obey the laws of human logic that Mike adheres to. We know from experience that we are creatures of limited understanding. b) God only has limited power and hence no place in our lives. Mike ignores the fact that God by definition is outside of space and time. Mike is ignorant of the fact that time only moves forward yet outside of observable data such as the earth revolving around the sun, sunrises and sunsets or the earths rotation, man cannot define time or tell time or stop time or reverse time. Mike obviously has never wondered why that is the case.
Friends it is more rational to believe in a God based on experiential data in our life and surroundings than to not believe in God. Only fools say in their hearts there is no God and therefore atheism is totally false.
Copyright © 2014, American Catholic Truth Society, Scott Windsor
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