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Thoughts On My Ongoing Discussion With A Christian


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I've been talking to a Christian friend of mine, who at this point won't really get into anything that has to deal with Christianity specifically. Instead, he wants to talk about the concept of truth and claims that if you are mistake free in your logic, you have to arrive at the conclusion that there is a creator (we are just not yet getting into which creator it is yet).

 

In asking him to clarify why God doesn't need to have a creator and how his logic is mistake free with his conclusion that there is a creator (and thus a purpose for creation), he responded with this:

 

"My point about God being supernatural is this: We see in the natural world that all created things have a creator and have been created for a purpose, therefore if we are created, we have been created for a purpose. God is not contained within the natural world and thus, does not necessarily need to conform to the rule that He be a created being. We do not know the rules of the supernatural realm. This fits within the correspondence and coherence theories of truth. In fact, to presume that we know the rules of the supernatural realm is a common logical mistake. Some would say that to accept that there is a supernatural realm is a logical mistake, but I would say that it is a logical conclusion that we must arrive at.

 

God's laws are not our laws. We observe that all things "came" from somewhere, sometime, or something else. God doesn't need to "come" from anything provided the natural laws which govern our existence don't govern His. You might ask me to prove that He is ouside of our realm, but all I can do is point you back to the observations that all things appear to be created (even the laws that govern them), that all created things need a creator, and that because all things in our realm have come from somewhere, the Creator of all things must be outside our realm. He is supernatural. Thus we arrive at the logical conclusion that there is a supernatural realm for that is where the Creator must reside.

 

A supernatural Creator does not need a creator although we natural beings need a Creator because He is supernatural and we are not. You can't apply electricity to something that exists in the realm of gravity (well, this illustration breaks down if you use insanely huge magnets, but in the normal course of reality it works. And besides, sometimes the supernatural does effect our reality and people rise from the dead...)"

 

I also read a post last week by Kaiser01 entitled "Ex Nihilo Nehil Fit, (Nothing comes from Nothing)" and he somewhat talked about the same thing. I tend to agree with Kaiser01 in his conclusion and also tend to agree with my Christian friend with his conclusion. When I look at the simple fact that I exists in this universe, my most reasonable answer as to how the universe even exists seems to point towards some sort of creator. After being a Christian for so many years, and finally looking at the faith objectively, Christianity and the God of the Bible appears to be completely unlikely to me (or any other religion that I've explored for that matter).

 

Any thoughts on what my friend has said? Are there holes in the logic anywhere? My initial reaction is to say, "maybe so..." to the idea of a supernatural creator, but I simply do not see any evidence, other than the fact we exist, to say who or what this creator is...or that he/she/it has a purpose for creating us.

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There are big holes in his logic, he does what all theist do, they try to place God as the only possible prime mover when this is completely fallacious and simply dishonest. Point out to him that he cant simply just pick one prime mover out of an infinity and say "this is it," he must prove his position that YHWH is the only prime mover that logic can tell us there is. Also his understanding of what lies beyond our universe is somewhat archaic, he is acting like things beyond this universe are magic when really they are part of the natural order just extended beyond our universal realm, in fact we ourselves are a product of that natural order, it defines us not the other way around.

 

The other problem with his position is he cant get past a simple designer, he cant get YHWH out of any of that. For example he said the fact people rise from the dead are proof of a God, well just pushing the problems with this aside, lets assume people do rise. Christianity does not have the one and only zombie man, many religions do especially voodoo where the dead rissing play a special role on their theology. Really since he probably cant prove any one super natural event over the other his assumption of YHWH is a unstable one.

 

Also you have my permission to quote anything i say, including the topic of Ex-Nihlio.

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Another thing he did was claim we don't know the rules of the "supernatural" realm but there he is defining it himself, a double standard you need to point out to him. When he says you cant either, just say we have done far more in the realm of mathematics and experimentation to show whats not necessary for a universe and that means God.

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This "logic" is all over the place but what I managed to pick out on first read is...

 

First Cause Argument (linked with purpose)

Therefor God and God's purpose

God is magic. Magic doesn't follow the rules.

 

 

1. I don't accept the first cause argument. It is not convincing to me and he fails to add anything to it which would cause me to accept it.

2. Even if you accept the first cause argument there is no reason to say that "God" did it.

3. Magic- If there is a magical hidden realm which follows none of the rules of the natural universe... What's the point of making any sort of statements about it? "God is magic and a pink griffon with a penchant for causing suffering to innocent children in Africa! You can't prove griffon god interacts with the real world. but he does sometimes!"

4. If all the created things in nature have a purpose. And God is outside of nature. Then God does not need a purpose to create.

 

Hope my rambling manages to get my point across....

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"My point about God being supernatural is this: We see in the natural world that all created things have a creator and have been created for a purpose, therefore if we are created, we have been created for a purpose.

 

Stop right there. By introducing "all created things" at the beginning of his argument, he is begging the question. What he wants to establish is that God created things in the natural world. But he assumes that they are "created" at the beginning. Why not take out "created" and put in "things that evolved"? It gets worse when he goes on to talk about "have a creator and have been created for a purpose." Right at the outset he simply asserts the very stuff he wants to prove. So this is not an argument. It's a big, gratuitous assumption.

 

Petitio principii is the name of the fallacy.

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I started to read the bolded part, then after a few lines all I saw was "blah blah Jesus blah pseudo-logic blah blah".....I couldn't finish it. All xian apologetics are the same.

 

Horse shit.

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Guest Valk0010

A few holes I noticed.

 

A: All things are not created. Quantum particles from what I understand can appear out of nowhere and then disappear.

 

B:Even if it could be established that all things are created, there is nothing that says rationally anyway that it can't be a purely natural cause of some currently unknown description. To say else wise is argument from ignorance and not worth your time. The arguement about the universe being some brute fact is baloney cause its a red herring.

 

C:Unless he is willing to claim that god did not create logic, he is going to have to get around the contradiction of the creator of logic, being logically and sense its a perfect being, having perfect logic.

 

D: He is giving apriori arguements rather then a posteriori arguements. Apriori arguements can very easily be wrong if they don't have empirical proof. Tell him to actually give you proof rather then logic toys. Say if he is using kalam like I think will come up. Ask him to prove that a mind can exist without a brain? Or that a being could even be timeless?

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Even if one accepts the premise that there is a creator, it's quite a leap of faith to assume it's the Christian version of God.

There could be creators(plural), or an alien, or any number of other "gods" that can be assigned as "the creator".

 

He states:

In fact, to presume that we know the rules of the supernatural realm is a common logical mistake.

 

It would also be a mistake to presume that his version of "god", along with its rules, is somehow more relevant than other versions of god.

I suspect he would then special plead that his version of god is somehow more likely than any other.

He would appeal to the authority of the Bible, which by itself exhibits circular reasoning and other logical mistakes.

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We see in the natural world that all created things have a creator and have been created for a purpose, therefore if we are created, we have been created for a purpose.

Not so. Many "created things" have no purpose or are accidents. Even worse most "created things" are awful. How many "created things" are slam dunks on the first try? Most "created things" involve lots of trial and error and, even then, they wind up getting shelved. Many "new products" type conventions are full of failures on both counts (ie. both the "creators" and the "created things").

 

For some reason this particular creator, having never created ever before, managed to create everything "just right" without ever having met another actual "being" of any sort? It lives alone. Self-contained. And in a foreign realm. The "super natural." So the creator created something that is nothing like itself in any way, shape or form. Unlike all "creators" that we know about this particular creator made, from scratch, an entirely novel creation in every possible way and did so on the very first attempt.

 

It would be the only time this ever happened in the history of ever. Yet we're told it did and it was absolutely perfect.

 

Bullshit.

 

This simply flies in the face of how "creators" and "created things" work.

 

God is not contained within the natural world and thus, does not necessarily need to conform to the rule that He be a created being. We do not know the rules of the supernatural realm. This fits within the correspondence and coherence theories of truth. In fact, to presume that we know the rules of the supernatural realm is a common logical mistake. Some would say that to accept that there is a supernatural realm is a logical mistake, but I would say that it is a logical conclusion that we must arrive at.

How would we know anything about this "god" or where it might be contained? I will assume it comes from the previous "argument" that this "god" is the "creator." Anything "created" lives in one place and anything not created lives in another. If "god" were to live in this same "realm" with us then he might also be "created."

 

This also flies in the face of what we know of "creators" and "created things." All of our "creators" live in the same "realm" as their "created things." Maybe not the same specific area if the "created thing" is dangerous but in many case they might be in the same room. The "creator" of the bed certainly spent a lot time with his "created thing." The "creator" of clothes, knives, televisions, and so on, existed in the same "realm" and spent plenty of time with their "created thing." It's silly to assume they came from some other place, created something they had no knowledge of, or need for, then left it here while they *poof* went back to their own "realm." It's patently absurd.

 

But we're discussing this so we can have a unique creation by a "creator" that cannot, itself, be created. But why can't some other "creator" simply have done the same? Created some unique creation and then *poof* went back to its own "realm?" That unique creation being, of course, our supposed "creator." The problem never goes away even with concepts of uniqueness and some "supernatural realm" that cannot be defined.

 

God's laws are not our laws. We observe that all things "came" from somewhere, sometime, or something else. God doesn't need to "come" from anything provided the natural laws which govern our existence don't govern His. You might ask me to prove that He is ouside of our realm, but all I can do is point you back to the observations that all things appear to be created (even the laws that govern them), that all created things need a creator, and that because all things in our realm have come from somewhere, the Creator of all things must be outside our realm. He is supernatural. Thus we arrive at the logical conclusion that there is a supernatural realm for that is where the Creator must reside.

So "god" gets a free pass but we don't? Because the "supernatural" somehow doesn't have to obey any rules? So which came first? The "supernatural realm" or "god?" Did he live in cramped quarters then make the "supernatural" to be his home or did the "supernatural" exist and he just sort of "move in?" Or is "god" and the "supernatural" synonymous in some strange way? If "god" were busy creating things why didn't he create our "realm" with his laws? Why does it apparently have different laws?

 

A supernatural Creator does not need a creator although we natural beings need a Creator because He is supernatural and we are not. You can't apply electricity to something that exists in the realm of gravity (well, this illustration breaks down if you use insanely huge magnets, but in the normal course of reality it works. And besides, sometimes the supernatural does effect our reality and people rise from the dead...)"

I have no idea what he's talking about here. Don't we have gravity here? I have mass. The Earth has mass. Let me try something. Nope. I can't jump off the planet. Gravity seems to be working. And all my gizmo's (including my PC that I'm typing this on) is working. So electricity is working. And all this stuff is stuck here with me on the planet. Gravity and electricity. I seem to be missing something.

 

But since he's basically saying that a supernatural creator doesn't need a creator because he's supernatural I don't think there's much to be missing.

 

He also then says the supernatural makes people rise from the dead. That's a nifty thing. The "supernatural" is one hell of an reason. "Ummm...the supernatural ate my homework." "The supernatural killed that vagrant." "I didn't rape your dog. The supernatural did." "Give me all your money or the supernatural will blow your brains out." Awesome.

 

mwc

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