God Is Impossible

Premise 1: All (purposed) actions are prompted by need, want, or desire.

Premise 2: A perfect immutable being has no needs, wants or desire.

Premise 3: God is a being as described by premise 2.

Premise 4: Creation would have been the (purposed) action of the creator.

Premise 5: The universe exists.

From P 1 & 2: God does not need, want, or desire anything.

Conclusion: the universe couldn’t have been created.

 

If god is perfect and immutable, change is impossible, therefore creation is impossible (not to mention miracles and prayer). Assuming the argument is valid, which I think it is, which of the premises (if any) are wrong? In other words, is the argument also sound?

And if the argument is sound, then there is a contradiction between believing in the existence of god and that of the universe. Since we know the universe exists, god can’t.

 

(Note: I have clarified the argument by including “purposed”.  I think it went without saying that I was referring to deliberate acts of conscious beings but based on the discussion below it was necessary to clarify.)

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113 Responses to “God Is Impossible”

  1. Zeus Almighty Says:

    Greetings: Become familar with Plato and neoplatonists like Plotinus before judging, for they have a theory on the creater that meets your ciritera in premise 1-3. The creation comes out of God like flame from heat, or like a smell from something, or like a vessel overfilled, without will. Consider God may not be omni potent(yahweh the god of the bible ceirtanly is not) and needs a objective view point to see himself (creation is the mirror that God sees himself), or that love can only be real when there is a outside object to love.

  2. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    How do you know this?
    Premise 1: All actions are prompted by need, want, or desire.

    Premise 2: A perfect immutable being has no needs, wants or desire.

    I understand that you want these premises to be true, but how do you KNOW that they are?

    Is it possible that “within” what we call God’s immutability that there exists his wants, needs and desires? If there is even the slightest chance that these exist with an “unchanging” god, then once again you are wrong. (also, remember that you are using human language to describe god, so your language made up the definitions.

  3. agnosis Says:

    Your conclusion as founded upon your stated premises is valid, however, I’m convinced of the validity of Premise 2. I’ll buy that Premise 1 is likely true; I certainly can’t think of an instance that would disprove it. Premise 2 is difficult to ‘prove’, however, as no one has ever met a perfect being. I think I would agree that a perfect being would have no needs, being perfectly self-contained, at least presumably. But the question is, would a perfect being truly have no needs or desires? And if a perfect being, particularly one who would presumably be all-powerful (or at least powerful enough to create a universe) did have needs or desires, would having said needs or desires make this perfect being any less perfect, particularly given than said being would be powerful enough to fulfill those needs and desires for itself?

    Interesting logic proof. I like it.

  4. evanescent Says:

    Hi agnosis, thanks for the comment. Of course I don’t claim that the argument is definitely sound, that’s why I presented it here for criticism. It is hard to find an immediate problem with the premises. The least persuasive of all the premises is Premise 2 I agree, but even this is fairly acceptable I believe.

    It seems that theists are happy to accept that god is immutable and perfect, yet have him want and act in a human way; have him change his mind, or be won over or convinced by human actions. This is an apparent contradiction.

    Geno: you’re not really furthering any argument for or against by debating over words and definitions. The only way to attack the conclusion is to prove one of the premises wrong. I assume you would attack Premise 2, which I concede above is the least solid of them all. But if any being needs, or wants, or desires for anything, it must desire to bring about a change to BETTER something, and if something needs bettering, it cannot be perfect.

  5. Geno Says:

    The more direct point is that perhaps it is the needs, wants and desires that make him the perfect being. They are built in within his nature and they will be fulfilled and will not change – immutability!!!

  6. evanescent Says:

    That doesn’t really explain much though Geno. Epicurus made this point (a little earlier than I did!): how can a perfect being lack or desire anything. What motive could a god possibly have for creating anything?

  7. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    The point about the word definitions is this – where do you get the idea that God needs and or desires? You need to explain that first, otherwise you have only made an assertion and made no argument. The scripture is written in anthropomorphic terms for our benefit, not god’s. (you know the drill, when the Bible says that God protects us under his wing, it does not mean that he is a chicken or that he has feathers.) So, since your premise is only an assertion, there is nothing to disprove. You made it up.

  8. Geno Says:

    It’s obvious that the creating is part of his perfection and completeness. So, both you and your buddy Epicurus may be in error. You 2 should talk it over 😉

  9. evanescent Says:

    Premises are assumptions, Geno! Or they’re based on already established conclusions. The key to destroying a valid argument is to prove one of its premises wrong. You’re not really doing that. Arguing over metaphor and the bible is irrelevant. You must prove one of the premises wrong. That’s how it works. It comes down to what Epicurus said:

    “how can a perfect being lack or desire anything. What motive could a god possibly have for creating anything?”

    Geno said:

    It’s obvious that the creating is part of his perfection and completeness. So, both you and your buddy Epicurus may be in error. You 2 should talk it over.

    This means nothing. You cannot redefine perfection to include creation because you beg the question. Would an immutable unchangeable perfect being, want, or need, or desire to create anything? Yes or no, and why?

  10. Geno Says:

    you have not answered the question – how do you know that God is in need or has desires?

    Also, if God is “A Creator” by his very nature, why does that make him lacking in anything. Creating is what he does. Just because he creates something new does not in any way make him incomplete, in fact it shows his perfection.

  11. evanescent Says:

    How do I know he has needs or desires? Because that’s what the first premise states.

    The rest of your post is just circular reasoning.

  12. tobe38 Says:

    Geno,

    I find the best way to describe perfection (and I think a fair definition) is anything that cannot possibly be improved in any conceivable way. For God to doanything, he must have some kind of need, desire, want, impulse or reason of some sort to do it. If he created the universe, he must have wanted or needed to do it. What Evanescent is saying (and I agree) is that the moment God wants or needs something, he ceases to be perfect because a God who doesn’t want or need anything would be better, and if a suggested improvement can be made, it’s not perfect.

    If you’re not happy with my definiton of “perfection”, explain why and/or offer a better one.

    If God does not want or desire anything, why does he do anything?

  13. Geno Says:

    Sorry bud, you made the assertion “Premise 1: All actions are prompted by need, want, or desire.” the burden is on you to offer proof before you go on to premise #2.

  14. evanescent Says:

    Nice try, but if you want to defeat the argument, you could provide at least ONE example of an action that ISN’T prompted by need, want, or desire.

    A perfect being would not be perfect if anything it did could improve upon itself.

    See Tobe’s comment.

  15. Geno Says:

    tobe, in your statement, you conclude;
    “What Evanescent is saying (and I agree) is that the moment God wants or needs something, he ceases to be perfect because a God who doesn’t want or need anything would be better, and if a suggested improvement can be made, it’s not perfect.”

    Where do you see the needs and desires? If it is God’s nature to create he is just being himself – perfectly. It is what he does, not what he needs or desires.

    Also, who said that what he is doing is improving? Could it just be that it is and continues to be.

  16. ES Says:

    This was part of my reasoning as I went from theist to atheist. I was told in religious studies that “God wanted” to create humans and could not imagine “want” and “perfection” in the same being.

    I think people who don’t understand this problem just can’t imagine true self-contained perfection.

  17. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    nice try on your part – but your premise is not an argument – only an assertion. Since you are the one who put it forth, it is yours to defend, not mine to disprove.

    I will give you an example.

    I say that there is a God and he is the God of the New Testament. According to you, you must now disprove my assertion just as you have asked me to disprove your assertion.

    Think about it while I go get some late lunch. 🙂

  18. evanescent Says:

    Hi Geno, you’ve hit the nail on the head: a creator is a being that brings about change; improvement etc.

    But this is exactly what a perfect being wouldn’t do. And indeed, why would it want to?

    You are begging the question by trying to tie creation into god’s nature, but that is EXACTLY what we’re arguing about. A perfect creator is precisely the contradiction you’re trying to define your way out of.

  19. tobe38 Says:

    Geno,

    No, God must have some sort of reason to do anything. If you believe that he created the universe with purpose, and not just randomly, then you must concede that he had desires, or intentions of some sort.

    Do you really dispute that God has desires? Isn’t the existence of the ten commandments, and Jesus’ lessons that we should love our neighbours, etc proof that God wants certain things to happen?

    To take away God’s desires effectively renders him a thoughtless, random being. If you take away his desires, you take away his intelligence!

  20. evanescent Says:

    ES said:

    This was part of my reasoning as I went from theist to atheist. I was told in religious studies that “God wanted” to create humans and could not imagine “want” and “perfection” in the same being.

    I think people who don’t understand this problem just can’t imagine true self-contained perfection.

    Exactly! It’s really just as simple as this.

  21. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    “Hi Geno, you’ve hit the nail on the head: a creator is a being that brings about change; improvement etc.”

    see, you keep making things up. I never said that god created in order to change or improve anything.

  22. Geno Says:

    tobe,
    “Do you really dispute that God has desires?” yes I do. God does not have emotions. Again, God is described in anthropomorphic terms for our benefit not gods.

    God does not desire – god is. Do some homework – when God describes himself as “I Am that I Am” in the Hebrew Bible, what does he mean? If you understood that you wouldn’t be having this silly argument.

    When you make statements like these you only prove that you were never a Christian – “Isn’t the existence of the ten commandments, and Jesus’ lessons that we should love our neighbours, etc proof that God wants certain things to happen?”

    Of course not – god was stating his own standards (perfection). He never expected people to live up to them.

  23. evanescent Says:

    You didn’t have to. By creating, god DID change things, which according to the argument is a contradiction. Why would he create anything?

    You keep avoiding the issue. I think this is going around in circles and wasting time. Tobe’s last comment was a pretty excellent explanation of the situation, please refer to that.

    If anyone else has any genuinely challenging thoughts I’d be happy to hear them.

  24. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    You had asked earlier “you could provide at least ONE example of an action that ISN’T prompted by need, want, or desire.”

    I was sitting in the outdoor faculty area watching the wind blow – there is an action that was not caused by a need, a want nor a desire. Back to you, and be careful how you reply.

  25. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    “You keep avoiding the issue.” I have not avoided one thing – I asked for some evidence that your 1st & 2nd premises are true – you gave none. I have never had anyone throw back their assertion and say it was up to the other party to disprove.

    Show me that 1 & 2 are true – that has been the totality of this whole discussion – I asked in my first post “how do you know?”

  26. tobe38 Says:

    @ Geno

    God does not desire – god is. Do some homework – when God describes himself as “I Am that I Am” in the Hebrew Bible, what does he mean? If you understood that you wouldn’t be having this silly argument.

    Geno, one of the following two statements has to be true:

    1. God wants us to be Christians.
    2. God does not want us to be Christians.

    Which one is it? If it’s 1, God has desires. If it’s 2, then why am do people go to hell for not being Christians?

    When you make statements like these you only prove that you were never a Christian

    I’ve never claimed that I ever was a Christian. I think you’re getting mixed up with Evanescent. Either way, it’s a red herring.

    Of course not – god was stating his own standards (perfection). He never expected people to live up to them.

    Then why does he punish people, for all eternity, for not achieving a standard that is impossible for them?

  27. tobe38 Says:

    @ Geno

    I have not avoided one thing – I asked for some evidence that your 1st & 2nd premises are true – you gave none. I have never had anyone throw back their assertion and say it was up to the other party to disprove.

    Show me that 1 & 2 are true – that has been the totality of this whole discussion – I asked in my first post “how do you know?”

    Geno, this just shows a complete ignorance of argument structure. The conclusion of an argument has to be supported by evidence, and the burden of proof is on the claimant. But in the process of making that argument, the arguer uses premises, which are, by definition, assumptions. In order to refute the argument, you either have to disprove one of the premises, or demonstrate that the conclusion does not follow from them.

    And you tell me to do my homework?!

  28. Geno Says:

    tobe,
    again, false assumptions
    Geno, one of the following two statements has to be true:

    1. God wants us to be Christians.
    2. God does not want us to be Christians.

    Can you point anywhere in the Bible where it says whether or not God wants anyone to be or not be a Christian? I don’t think that the topic is ever mentioned.
    But if you want to show me a statement that says that, I will look into it. (or is this another one of those questions that I can not ask you to back up?)

  29. evanescent Says:

    Geno, you are a master at disrupting debates and introducing red herrings. And that’s not a compliment.

    Are you seriously suggesting that god DOESN’T want people to be christians?? And you want a quote from the bible?! LOL.

    Tobe said this:

    Geno, this just shows a complete ignorance of argument structure. The conclusion of an argument has to be supported by evidence, and the burden of proof is on the claimant. But in the process of making that argument, the arguer uses premises, which are, by definition, assumptions. In order to refute the argument, you either have to disprove one of the premises, or demonstrate that the conclusion does not follow from them.

    Until you’re going to argue properly, stop wasting time.

  30. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    My whole point has gone unanswered – but that is to be expected.

    Why does tobe get away making claims that I dispute and I am the bad guy.
    “Geno, one of the following two statements has to be true:”
    Why do I have to accept that statement?

    OK, you were the christian. Show me where it says that God wants people to be christian.

    I am glad that you and tobe lobby for that position but I don’t think it makes that statement in the Bible.

  31. Geno Says:

    you never answered my example of the wind being an action that was not caused by need, desire or want.

  32. evanescent Says:

    Are you serious? Ok:

    The wind isn’t a purposed action. Premise 1 applies to purposed actions.

    No offence Geno my friend, but the tiniest bit of forethought would have made you realise this!

    All I can do is keep pointing you back to Tobe’s comment:

    “Geno, this just shows a complete ignorance of argument structure. The conclusion of an argument has to be supported by evidence, and the burden of proof is on the claimant. But in the process of making that argument, the arguer uses premises, which are, by definition, assumptions. In order to refute the argument, you either have to disprove one of the premises, or demonstrate that the conclusion does not follow from them.”

    Look, I’m not saying that the argument above is perfect, but it is valid. To disprove it, it has to be shown where the error is by the methods above. This is how argumentation works.

  33. Geno Says:

    I’m sorry, but your premise stated “All actions are prompted by…”
    Then you said to show one that wasn’t – so I did and now you have changed the premise.

    So I will make a change – Your premise is wrong becuase you cannot show that purposed actions apply to God.

  34. evanescent Says:

    I’m sorry Geno, I assumed a certain standard of intelligence by my readers. I thought it went without saying that “actions” refer to those things that can consciously ‘act’.

    If purposed actions don’t apply to god then god has no purpose to his actions. So he’s just a random fluke of events and doesn’t even plan what he does from one moment to the next. Brilliant Geno, you’ve just disproved your god all by yourself. Well done.

    Although any time you’d like to address the argument above would be nice. I’ll come back to this tomorrow. (Little tip: think before you comment, you’ll be amazed at the results! 🙂 )

  35. Geno Says:

    As long as you think of god as your big brother, you will continue to attribute your characteristics to him instead of looking into who god may be.

    Just like Dawkins thinks that genes have their own mind and emotions, you think god has your mind and emotions. It doesn’t work.

  36. storbakken Says:

    If a being is perfect, then everything he does is perfect. If God needed, wanted or desired anything, then that need, want or desire would then be perfect and holy.

  37. tobe38 Says:

    @ Geno,

    Can you point anywhere in the Bible where it says whether or not God wants anyone to be or not be a Christian? I don’t think that the topic is ever mentioned.
    But if you want to show me a statement that says that, I will look into it. (or is this another one of those questions that I can not ask you to back up?)

    First of all, questions don’t need backing up, they’re just questions.

    Secondly, it doesn’t matter what’s in the Bible, this is a case of logical coherence. Either God wants us to be Christians or he doesn’t, regardless of what it says in the Bible. He can’t want us and not want us to be Christians at the same time – which one is it? Or can you offer a third option?

    @ Storbakken

    If a being is perfect, then everything he does is perfect. If God needed, wanted or desired anything, then that need, want or desire would then be perfect and holy.

    I’m going to refer you back to my earlier argument, that if we can conceive of a way in which God can be improved, then he can’t be perfect. As Evanescent has said, a God that had no need for anything would be better, so the God defined by monotheism can’t be perfect.

    Aside from that, you seem to be saying that because God is perfect by definition, then any apparent flaw in that perfection is in fact perfect. So, if God is imperfect, he is imperfect in a perfect way?

  38. Sidrah Says:

    premise 2 is I hate to say, incorrect, because God does want, however it is not in the sense that you and I want i.e we want a nice house or money, rather God wants us to obey Him, God wants us to do good to each other. God created the universe with a purpose, He didn’t create it in vain, and the beings he put in this universe have a purpose that he, again, wants us to strive towards.
    Furthermore, I ask on what basis you are forming “Premise 2: A perfect immutable being has no needs, wants or desire” exactly on?
    Im not sure your thinking is really logical here, although your applying the basic ‘if then’ scientific statement, it’s not really working. Maybe its too rudimentary I don’t know. but those are just my thoughts.

  39. evanescent Says:

    Hi Sidrah, thanks for commenting.

    Your exception to Premise 2 begs the question. You are in effect saying: “God can want, because he wants.”

    Leaving aside why god wants or needs worship, it comes ultimately down to the act of creation itself. Why create anything? What was there to improve on? What was lacking in god’s life? Why did he need or desire to bring about change? And if he is perfect there is no possible change that can better him or bring about a better state, otherwise he wouldn’t be perfect.

    Now, the only way to avoid this conclusion is to say a perfect being DOES actually have needs, wants, or desires. But this seems to be incompatible with how god is defined by many theists. Indeed, they want their god to be immutable, permanent, unchangeable, flawless, perfect, timeless, etc, yet also intervene on a whim, be affected by humans, by moved by prayer, be motivated to anger, or feel regret. These are human distortions of a perfect being; in other words, theists try to have their cake and eat it too.

    If god is immutable, creation is impossible.

  40. Zeus Almighty Says:

    Hello:
    You are correct in saying that a omni-potent diety would have no desires,wants etc. No qualities can be given to this god, even thought, becuase once you give god qualities you are limiting it’s power.

    I will take objection to your fourth premise: creation would have been a action of the creator.

    Creation was not a action by the creator it was a consequence of his being. Consider when heat comes from fire, must the fire have a desire to create the heat, no.

    Also you are taking it for granted that the one actually created everything. Neoplatonists believe he did not.

    “scince we know the universe exsists, god can’t”

    what if the universe and god are one in the same? As in ancient greek hylozoism, or einstien’s pantheism.

  41. evanescent Says:

    Hi Zeus,

    The problem with the ‘creation being a consequence of his being’ response, is that it just avoids the problem by trying to redefine god.

    The premise is that a perfect being would never bring about change. By saying creation is part of god’s nature, that’s just saying in effect “but THIS perfect being would!” It begs the question.

    It also doesn’t explain why a god would create anything anyway; or what his possible motive could be.

    The only way to escape the premise is to say creation was not a purposed act, which means god didn’t even plan to create anything. No theist would agree with this, and rightly so since it contradicts their definition of god.

    As for pantheism, this argument doesn’t address it. This is an argument against a monotheistic god. Deism, pantheism, and panentheism remain unharmed.

  42. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    You said to Zeus “The problem with the ‘creation being a consequence of his being’ response, is that it just avoids the problem by trying to redefine god.”

    Have you ever considered that you are the one doing the redefining of God?

    Also, it is interesting that you have totally changed your thoughts on this subject (it must have evolved in the past couple of months.)

    You have gone from “I have no belief in a god because there is no evidence for god” to this new position in the article “there can be no evidence for god since the existence of god is impossible.”

    Slam! – that was your mind slamming shut! 😉

  43. evanescent Says:

    Have you ever considered that you are the one doing the redefining of God?

    No.

    I could point out to readers that my position hasn’t changed of course. I could point out there is no contradiction between disbelieving because there is no evidence and also trying to form a logical argument against god (with a provocative title) to encourage a lively debate. But I suspect my readers will discern this for themselves.

  44. tobe38 Says:

    @ Geno,

    Any response to my comment at 6:26am?

  45. storbakken Says:

    Tobe wrote: “Aside from that, you seem to be saying that because God is perfect by definition, then any apparent flaw in that perfection is in fact perfect. So, if God is imperfect, he is imperfect in a perfect way?”

    By no means am I saying what you are implying. I agree with the standard dictionary definition of the word “perfect,” i.e. that to be perfect is to be without fault or defect. Thus, it is impossible for there to be any type of apparent flaw in a perfect God. Concluding that a perfect God’s desires are as perfect as is he.

    Why do the atheists/agnostics on this thread find it hard to concede that if there is a perfect God that his desires are also perfect. That’s just good logic.

  46. tobe38 Says:

    Storbakken,

    It’s bad logic, because you’re begging the question. You’re saying that God is perfect, so whatever he does, that’s what perfection must be. If God makes mistakes, are they perfect mistakes?

    You’re saying that if God was perfect, he would be perfect. That’s a tautology, nobody disagrees. We’re trying to show that such a being can’t logically exist.

  47. Richard Says:

    Wait a minute guys, wait a minute! You lost me a little, God has no feathers?………

    Slam!

  48. Geno Says:

    Storbakken – they use the same words, but they use a different dictionary.
    It’s called atheism speak. They redefine everything. See my 5:51 pm to evanescent.

    They frame everything to their advantage, and then chide you if you don’t agree with their framing. Allistair McGrath tore Richard Dawkins apart on this very issue (making things up!)

    In this thread conversation, they make the age old error assuming that God has the same attributes that man has. How silly. A tremendous error of which they will not let go.

  49. Geno Says:

    tobe,
    to your 6:26am – “Either God wants us to be Christians or he doesn’t, regardless of what it says in the Bible. ”

    As a Christian (and that is all I have ever claimed to defend) I know nothing of God outside of the Bible. So, perhaps God has not “expressed” an opinion.

    Does God also have to like one color better than another?

  50. tobe38 Says:

    @ Geno,

    As a Christian (and that is all I have ever claimed to defend) I know nothing of God outside of the Bible. So, perhaps God has not “expressed” an opinion.

    Are you saying that everything there is to know about God is written in the Bible, and there is nothing beyond that? I think that limits your god in a big way.

    Does God also have to like one color better than another?

    He doesn’t have to, but he could. If god exists, then I don’t think the Bible tells us everything about him.

    I still think you’re dodging the question: either

    1. God wants us to be Christians
    2. God doesn’t want us to be Christians

    I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask you to pick one of these and explain why, or offer a third option that you think I’ve missed.

  51. Geno Says:

    tobe,
    Again, you show the shortcomings of knowing nothing about religion in general and Christianity in particular.

    God is not limited in any way – he has revealed to us everything that we need to know, but that does not mean that he has revealed to us everything about himself. So – what we know of God is expressed in the Bible.

    As to you 2 choices, let’s try this

    1.) Tobe wants is to eat hot dogs
    2.) Tobe does not want us to eat hot dogs
    or has tobe not expressed himself in this area and we cannot know what tobe wants us to do about hot dogs?

  52. Geno Says:

    tobe,
    if you had a 5 yr old kid who asks a question, do you tell him what he needs to know to answer a 5 yr old or do you tell him everything you know on the topic?

  53. evanescent Says:

    This is getting ridiculous. Ok Geno, you win, it’s not clear whether god wants us to be christian or not, therefore I can be an atheist and still achieve salvation! Woohoo!

    Your 5-year-old-kid example is irrelevant. The argument must be won or lost by disproving the premises. So far no one has come close.

  54. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    I was answering tobe question about god. Just because god has not revealed everything to us is not a limitation on god, just as I would answer a 5 yr olds question without reveling everything I know on a topic.

    It gets difficult playing tag team with you and tobe – I answer you and tobe butts in and when I answer tobe you butt in.

    BTW, what is it you need salvation from?

  55. ES Says:

    evanescent, your problem is that you expect your theistic readers to think about their god logically. However, they are so attached to the idea of god that they reject any thought that might lead to disproving their god. They are not actually envisioning what your words imply.

    Zeus, I used to believe in a similar type of god, for whom creativity was part of its nature. But I could not answer satisfactorily the question, “to what end does god create?” Is it just an organic expansion and contraction? We are all created bits of this godhead and through time and incarnations eventually reunite with it? That seems sort of pointless.

    Also, of course, the lack of evidence for dualism pretty much undercuts the entire thing.

  56. tobe38 Says:

    @ Geno

    God is not limited in any way – he has revealed to us everything that we need to know, but that does not mean that he has revealed to us everything about himself. So – what we know of God is expressed in the Bible.

    Ok, I get what you’re saying. There’s no way to know which of the two options I gave you is correct, right? I’ll go along with that, for the sake of argument. But do you acknowledge that of the two options I gave you, it must be the case that one is true and the other false, even if we don’t know which way around is actually correct?

    It gets difficult playing tag team with you and tobe – I answer you and tobe butts in and when I answer tobe you butt in.

    We’ve been over this before, Geno. Open thread, remember? Nobody’s “butting in”, we’re all free to respond to anyone else.

  57. Darren Says:

    I think we do need to define “perfect”. Can a being be perfect itself, yet find itself in an environment that is not perfect?

    I ask this because I genuinely don’t know: where has the idea that the biblical god is perfect come from? Self-assertion? If so, is that trustworthy? Is perfection not subjective?

    On your title: we already know that the god of this discussion is impossible, because the religionists have already said so. They don’t realise it because they’re remarkably skilled at logical incoherence.

  58. Geno Says:

    Darren,
    You assume that God’s logic and man’s logic is on the same level. You assume that you should be able discern the mind of God.

    Explain something complex to a 5 yr old and see if he uses “man’s logic” and understands you (and you 2 are made of the exact same substance.)

    So, if the 5 yr old can’t make heads or tails of your logic, is it because you are “remarkably skilled at logical incoherence.”

    Therefore, I will make the claim that your “rejection” of God is only due to YOUR lack of skilled reasoning. Perhaps it takes God’s revelation of himself to help you understand – open up to the idea buddy! 😉

  59. Geno Says:

    tobe,
    I understand about the open thread – however, I don’t get the answer from the person I ask.

    BTE – does tobe want us to eat the hot dogs or not? 😉

  60. Darren Says:

    No, Geno. Logic is logic. I accept that my understanding of the universe may be fundamentally flawed, but that’s got nothing to do with logic.

    Your child analogy fails because the child is developmentally incomplete – you cannot reason with a child because he/she has not yet developed the capacity to be reasoned with.

    My rejection of your god is because there is not a shred of evidence to support the claim. You and every other believer have manifestly failed to come up with any support for the idea other than bare assertion and this nebulous thing called faith.

    By all means I’m open to the idea of divine revelation. It hasn’t happened yet, I strongly suspect it never will, and a few words in a dusty book does not count as revelation. It was written by humans, for humans.

  61. Geno Says:

    Darren,
    You have it right “Your child analogy fails because the child is developmentally incomplete – you cannot reason with a child because he/she has not yet developed the capacity to be reasoned with.”

    That is how God looks at your reasoning abilities – as stated in the old dusty book;
    “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

    Anyway, it is not my job to convince people of God’s existence – that is God’s job.

    I did link an article last night that showed a great dilemma that atheist are running into, but it looks like evanescent censored it.

  62. evanescent Says:

    No I deleted it because it was irrelevant to the topic. If you want to start topics of your own, start your own blog.

    As for what you said about reasoning about god, it’s the same old “we can’t say anything about god, unless it’s what we already believe”. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: if we cannot evaluate god then that goes for everyone, which means theists may as well give up their beliefs here and now. Everyone evaluates everything, including god. To say he is beyond our understanding when it suits you, is question begging special pleading.

    You are still to identify a problem with any of the premises and you’ve had plenty of chances, I assume you concede the argument.

    Anyway, it is not my job to convince people of God’s existence – that is God’s job.

    He is doing a really piss poor job of it then. If this is true why don’t theists keep their beliefs to themselves and hope that god will reveal all?

  63. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    I showed you what was wrong with your premise. Not every action is caused by the reason’s you stated – then you changed the premise.

    It was like tobe’s challenge – when I answered it, many came on his blog and said that the construct of the challenge should have been changed.

    Nothing is different – just a refusal to accept any theistic reply.

  64. Geno Says:

    “He is doing a really piss poor job of it then.”

    even at atheist’s best estimates, God has 85% of the world convinced! 🙂

  65. Geno Says:

    Also, I didn’t say I shouldn’t talk about God, I just said that it is not my job to do the convincing.

    God does the converting – I am to make disciples out of believers.

    “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

  66. evanescent Says:

    even at atheist’s best estimates, God has 85% of the world convinced!

    Hehe, touché. Allow me to clarify: it doesn’t count if people convince themselves! 😉

    God does the converting – I am to make disciples out of believers.

    Wow, and only 95% of that was rhetoric…is that a personal best for you?

    I showed you what was wrong with your premise. Not every action is caused by the reason’s you stated – then you changed the premise.

    No you didn’t. You provided the example of the wind, which doesn’t work because the wind isn’t a purposed action.

  67. Darren Says:

    “even at atheist’s best estimates, God has 85% of the world convinced!”

    No, it’s just that the parents do an effective job of passing down the superstitions. Voices in your head are not God. It’s you.

    If children weren’t indoctrinated, the religious population would fall away drastically within a generation.

  68. Darren Says:

    I’ll ask again:

    I ask this because I genuinely don’t know: where has the idea that the biblical god is perfect come from? Self-assertion? If so, is that trustworthy? Is perfection not subjective?

  69. evanescent Says:

    Well, my days of bible study are long over, but I can’t recall god calling himself “perfect” exactly in the scriptures, but humans are referred to as “imperfect” I’m pretty sure, which more or less implies god’s perfection.

    It doesn’t really matter if god says its perfect or not, or if the bible says it is or not. Virtually all theistic believers define their god this way, so the argument is enough to disprove this definition of god.

    Believers can win the case straight out by admitting that god isn’t perfect.

    Even if it could be argued that god had some “motive” that we couldn’t understand or even put words to, I don’t think that would be a sufficient response to the argument, but I’d accept it all the same. Why? Because theists would have to admit they don’t have a clue why god does anything. So the myth of “he created us because he loved us”, is nonsense. They’d have to admit they have absolutely no idea why he created anything.

  70. Geno Says:

    I always want to be helpful in pointing you towards the scriptures;

    “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect” Matthew 5:48

    I am sure you would do the same if I couldn’t find my way around the atheist scriptures (Dawkins) 😉

  71. Geno Says:

    “Because theists would have to admit they don’t have a clue why god does anything.”

    I admit, that outside the little that is revealed in scripture, I have very little knowledge as to God’s motives. So what’s the big deal about that?

  72. evanescent Says:

    Thanks for the link Geno, much appreciated. There we have it: god is perfect, and therefore wouldn’t have created the universe.

    I admit, that outside the little that is revealed in scripture, I have very little knowledge as to God’s motives. So what’s the big deal about that?

    You ask a good question: you use your own intellect, reason, and morality to read the scriptures and evaluate the meaning for yourself. So if you can do this and come to a conclusion about god, we all can! Therefore, god is not inscrutable and unknowable. We can indeed say things about him, so the Unknown Purpose Defence kinda fails.

    (And if theists admit they cannot possibly understand god’s motives, they should stop trying to attribute meaning to his actions!)

  73. Geno Says:

    No, you missed the point – we can only know what God has revealed to us.

    “Therefore, god is not inscrutable and unknowable” – so where did you come up with the thought that he was?

    Let me ask you this – do you know your dad? Do you really know him or do you just know his outside persona?

  74. evanescent Says:

    Are you saying god is understandable like a human father??

    “Therefore, god is not inscrutable and unknowable” – so where did you come up with the thought that he was?

    From theists like you saying that we cannot understand what god does.

    Have you decided which of the premises you’re going to disprove yet?

  75. Geno Says:

    evanescent,
    are you doing this to just pull my leg?
    “Are you saying god is understandable like a human father??”

    No, I am saying just the opposite – if you can’t even know everything (in fact you probably know very little about your dad) about your dad, with whom you share genetic materials and you cannot reason together fully with your 5 yr old son, why would you expect to have this great knowledge about God who as I quoted earlier states that his thought are far above ours?

    The God you are arguing against is indeed no God at all – you are right. But that is not the God of Christianity.

  76. Geno Says:

    as I told you, I disproved premise #1 and then you added “purposed”

  77. Geno Says:

    I will even go further and challenge your conclusion

    “the universe couldn’t have been created.”

    I think that we will all agree that this universe as we know it was created, whether by God, by accident or by left over residue from the “multiverse” – but it was created.

    So you are wrong.

  78. evanescent Says:

    Wrong. The universe wasn’t created. If you want to use “created” in such a BROAD all-encompassing non-specific way, then EVERYTHING was ‘created’ in that sense.

    But that’s being dishonest. We know what the word “created” means in this context, it means the creation of a creator, and the universe is not the artifice of a designer.

    Anyway, you are correct that I added ‘purposed’. I did I because it was necessary to clarify the premise to you. (I thought it was self-explanatory personally.) You didn’t disprove Premise 1, you misunderstood it!

    What are you saying, that I’m not allowed to correct or amend the argument?? Of course I am! That’s how an argument works. You found a potential fault with it (the definition of ‘action’ was not precise enough) so I improved the argument. That is, after all, why I posted it in the first place.

    Note: you didn’t disprove the argument, you just suggested a way I could improve it, so I did.

    Now the argument more clearly states what I obviously meant all along: all purposed actions are the source of motivation, (that being desire, want, or need). Since a perfect being wants, needs, or desires nothing, it is a contradiction to say it purposed any action.

    The only way to defeat the argument is to:

    Say that god isn’t perfect.

    Or, deny that a perfect being doesn’t want or need anything (I don’t think you can do this).

    Or, deny that creation was purposed, in other words, it was a fluke and god had no control over it. (This doesn’t wash either).

    Or, suggest that god was “motivated” in some unknowable non-descript way. I don’t think this works either though, because you either say “well we’re obviously here so we must have been created”, which is circular reasoning. Or at best you admit that you have no idea why god did anything, (again, this requires surrendering your theology).

    (Psst: Geno, you can’t challenge a conclusion in an argument. You must either challenge the premises, or show that the conclusion doesn’t logically flow from the premises.)

  79. Geno Says:

    Not so at all. Go ahead, just keep changing your definitions. I can tell you that here in the US that the Grand Canyon was created by an inanimate force. Don’t tell me what creation means. You may have misspoke, but I caught you.

    Another bad assumption you make when you say;
    “Or at best you admit that you have no idea why god did anything, (again, this requires surrendering your theology).”

    1.) I do not need to surrender my theology. My reasoning can be based on the fact that I have limited knowledge and I use what I have.
    2.) Again, I have said that I know very little about the mind of God (I have been very open about that) but, I am only required to act on that which God has revealed.

    Unlike you, I don’t need to pretend to know things that I do not know.

    Your last challenge about “your” rules of engagement again is false. I did challenge your conclusion because it was so weak.

    Let me ask you this, if God did appear to you, which of your premises would be wrong? If none of them are wrong while God is standing in front of you, what does that say? (you made them up)

    You never did answer me as to how well you were able to know your dad even while you were face to face.

  80. evanescent Says:

    Geno said:

    Not so at all. Go ahead, just keep changing your definitions. I can tell you that here in the US that the Grand Canyon was created by an inanimate force. Don’t tell me what creation means. You may have misspoke, but I caught you.

    This just proves that you don’t get it. I maintain, as a matter of honesty and honour, that I haven’t moved the goalposts at all or fiddled the premises. It was clear what I meant all along and I obviously had to clarify them for YOU. Funny that not one other person picked the same “fault” that you did!

    BUT, even if you did catch me out, so what?! That is how a proper debate works. I presented this, and you say ‘I’m not sure about that’, so I say ‘ok, what if I rephrase it like this, how about it then?’

    Aren’t you forgetting that IF the argument is flawed, I should NEVER be able to get it right. So if I want to keep changing the argument to get it right, who cares?

    I just wanted to make that clear, even though the original intent of the premises hasn’t changed at all.

    Another bad assumption you make when you say;
    “Or at best you admit that you have no idea why god did anything, (again, this requires surrendering your theology).”

    1.) I do not need to surrender my theology. My reasoning can be based on the fact that I have limited knowledge and I use what I have.

    What you think you know is irrelevant. You are yet to defeat the argument, that’s what matters.

    2.) Again, I have said that I know very little about the mind of God (I have been very open about that) but, I am only required to act on that which God has revealed.

    Well if god is inscrutable you can’t know anything about him. What you think you “know” is from your own reading of a book, and you bring the meaning to it and to god. Which means anyone can bring their own meaning to “god”.

    Unlike you, I don’t need to pretend to know things that I do not know.

    Lol, ok Mr. Professor of Science that doesn’t even understand the scientific method.

    Your last challenge about “your” rules of engagement again is false. I did challenge your conclusion because it was so weak.

    Your knowledge of logic is as poor as your knowledge of science and philosophy.

    You cannot attack a conclusion in an argument Geno. You should have just taken this in and kept quiet when I politely pointed this out to you, but you come back here and repeat yourself!

    Here is an example, I know I’m wasting my time but here goes:

    P1: Dogs can speak English.

    P2: Spot is a dog.

    Conclusion: Therefore Spot can speak English.

    You cannot attack this conclusion! This argument is VALID. But it is not SOUND. You defeat my argument by showing it to be invalid, or disproving its premises.

    To defeat the Spot argument, you reject Premise 1, and therefore show the argument to be unsound. That’s how it works.

    Soooooo, you still haven’t disproved a premise in the Impossible God argument, so you are yet to disprove the argument.

    Let me ask you this, if God did appear to you, which of your premises would be wrong? If none of them are wrong while God is standing in front of you, what does that say? (you made them up)

    That’s like saying: “if a flying elephant appeared in your room, you’d have to believe in flying elephants!”

    Well, duh, but that doesn’t prove flying elephants exist!

    LOL, what you’ve just said is: “but since god exists, one of your premises MUST be wrong!” If only it worked that way eh Geno? Care to point out which premise is wrong?

    You never did answer me as to how well you were able to know your dad even while you were face to face.

    Totally irrelevant. A better question would be how do I know my dad wanted to create me? Easy: because humans have wants, needs, or desires. “God” doesn’t, so why did it create anything? The question remains…

  81. Geno Says:

    “I maintain, as a matter of honesty and honour, that I haven’t moved the goalposts at all or fiddled the premises.”

    Sure you did – when I challenged you on the creation of the universe (by God, by accident or by the multiverse) you backpeddled like crazy to tell me that I couldn’t use “created” that way. (I assumed that it was because that didn’t fit your system of thought.) So, I told you how the Grand Canyon was created by an inanimate force- your only reply was bluster!

    “Well if god is inscrutable you can’t know anything about him. ” This would be true – but I asked you before, how do you know this or why do you say that god is inscrutable? Again, you make assertions and present no argument.

    “LOL, what you’ve just said is: “but since god exists, one of your premises MUST be wrong!”
    Don’t make up my side of the argument – you are having a hard enough time with your own. My point was that since none of your premises would be wrong, even if God appeared to you, you have set up premises that are not falsifiable! That my friend is an error in your logic.

    My question about how well you know your dad is this – why do you think that it is strange to not be able to know much about God when you know very little about the man who raised you and that you have known and had close personal contact for your entire life?

    In your dog example, we know that dogs do not talk and are incapable of talking – we know that by observation, so your conclusion is wrong. If I argued that they do not speak English you would just change it to French as you did with your original premise. 😉

  82. evanescent Says:

    Does anybody else have anything to say that relates to the argument above, that is worth listening to?

  83. Geno Says:

    “Well if god is inscrutable you can’t know anything about him. ”

    I had another thought. Even if God is inscrutable, that just means that we can’t investigate the nature of God or his qualities. This however does not exclude the option that he can reveal “qualities” to us. Which he has done – which is no different than what you know about good old dad is what he reveals to you.

    So why is that strange?

  84. evanescent Says:

    You really don’t get it do you? I’m not wasting any more time dumbing things down for you.

    Does anybody else have anything to say that relates to the argument above, that is worth listening to?

  85. Syn Says:

    The argument seems to be very sound.
    Although I think the main weakness(?) it has is the unspecified and subjective idea of “perfection” in Premise 2. This seems to be less a fault of the argument, and more a shortcoming of the reader and their views on perfection. But theists especially tend to bend this to to fit their idea of god. Geno demonstrated this rather bluntly I’d say.

    The only other points that could be questioned were already covered. Well done.

  86. Bill White Says:

    What is your definition of perfection? Since there is no apparent perfection in the universe as we know it, I would find it difficult to believe that you could ever define perfection, therefore making your premise algebra with an X factor.

    To presume that a perfect being would have no wants, needs or desires seems a bit far stretching to me.

    Again, you would need a solid and agreed upon definition of perfect.

    Here are some of the more commonly accepted definitions of perfect:

    1. conforming absolutely to the description or definition of an ideal type: a perfect sphere; a perfect gentleman.
    2. excellent or complete beyond practical or theoretical improvement: There is no perfect legal code. The proportions of this temple are almost perfect.
    3. exactly fitting the need in a certain situation or for a certain purpose: a perfect actor to play Mr. Micawber; a perfect saw for cutting out keyholes.
    4. entirely without any flaws, defects, or shortcomings: a perfect apple; the perfect crime.
    5. accurate, exact, or correct in every detail: a perfect copy.
    6. thorough; complete; utter: perfect strangers.
    7. pure or unmixed: perfect yellow.
    8. unqualified; absolute: He has perfect control over his followers.
    9. expert; accomplished; proficient.

    Now, within the context of these definitions, I find nothing that constitutes that God as a perfect being would have no needs, wants or desires.

    That said, I would suggest that God could be both perfect and have a desire to create.

    All the best!
    Bill White
    The Synchronicity Expert
    synchronicity

  87. evanescent Says:

    Bill said:

    Again, you would need a solid and agreed upon definition of perfect.

    Very true.

    But I don’t impose this definition of god, theists do.

    A perfect self-contained being would want for nothing, desire nothing, and need nothing, because otherwise it would lack something in itself that couldn’t be provided by itself. This seems self-evident.

    I don’t believe that is stretching the definition too far at all. You are correct that nothing in existence meets the definition of perfection (being wise), because every being we know wants, needs, or desires something.

    God is usually explicitly defined as I have done so, so if theists want to define their god differently, that’s fine. But they must be careful, because once they talk about a god that needs or wants, they make it more and more human and less and less mysterious and divine. It’s their call really…

  88. D Says:

    You must be speaking of the muslim god, because the God of Christianity and Judaism is a personal God unlike most other religions, if not all. I would be careful not to confuse the Christian God with the muslim or hindu or buddhist gods.

  89. D Says:

    The Bible doesn’t describe perfection in the manner you presented, Jesus was perfect, but the Bible says that He was perfect because He never sinned. Christians believe that perfection doesn’t require one to be impersonal or (as you put it) immutable.

    Just thought I’d help clear things up a bit.

  90. evanescent Says:

    So, you’re saying that god DOES have wants, needs or desires?

    Tell me, “god” is sitting around in nothing, before anything was created, timeless. What did god need? What did god want?

  91. D Says:

    Yes, I am saying that He has wants and desires. He didn’t need anything, but He created us, because, being an all-knowing all-powerful being, He knew us before He made us, and He loved us because He knew us, so He created us. Not that hard to understand.

  92. evanescent Says:

    I propose that the only reason a being has wants and desires is because it lacks something that it doesn’t have. And a perfect being shouldn’t lack anything.

    You can’t love something that has never even existed. If god can have “potential” love for “potential” humans, why didn’t he create 1 trillion humans instead of just two? Why didn’t he create 1 trillion actual sentient species instead of, as far as we know, just the one?

    Why did he create anything? What was his motive? Love doesn’t seem to make much sense. What did he have to express love to and for? Why did he NEED to express love for something that didn’t even exist?

    You see, humans need love and need to express it. Humans have a biological urge to procreate and have kids. God presumably has no such need. It seems that theists wants their god to be as human and personal as possible, yet as soon as that causes a contradiction they retreat god to the INSCRUTABLE realm where his ways are mysterious. So which is it?

  93. D Says:

    I propose that the only reason a being has wants and desires is because it lacks something that it doesn’t have. And a perfect being shouldn’t lack anything.

    What does God lack?

    You can’t love something that has never even existed. If god can have “potential” love for “potential” humans, why didn’t he create 1 trillion humans instead of just two? Why didn’t he create 1 trillion actual sentient species instead of, as far as we know, just the one?

    He started off with two, and they multiplied. The world would be over-populated if He made a trillion to start with. Besides, the humans would have fallen quicker if there were a trillion of them, because the chances of one sinning would be about 999 out of 999.1, and because of the influence they’d have over each other (since they were perfect, they loved and trusted each other), there would be an over-populated world of sin instead of the world of sin we currently live in.

    God knew us before we existed. Did I not point this out already? If God knows everything that will happen, and knows us as people, not just little creatures running around this dark mud-ball we call Earth, which means that God already loved us, and He still does.

    Let’s suppose that I go into the future, and meet someone and I love them like family. I then go back to the past. Do I love them, or do I simply have the potential to love them? I already love them of course! Do you now understand?

    Why did he create anything? What was his motive? Love doesn’t seem to make much sense. What did he have to express love to and for? Why did he NEED to express love for something that didn’t even exist?

    Love was His motive. He had us to express His love to, and His way of expressing it was by creating us and giving us higher rank than even the angels. He didn’t and doesn’t need to express His love for us. He could just wipe us out of existence if He wanted to, but He does love us. Since God is outside of time, that explains why He sees the future, and that shows why He loved us before He made us. Because He already knew us, and He loved us, and since He’s all-powerful, why wouldn’t He create us? I don’t see why He wouldn’t.

    You see, humans need love and need to express it. Humans have a biological urge to procreate and have kids. God presumably has no such need. It seems that theists wants their god to be as human and personal as possible, yet as soon as that causes a contradiction they retreat god to the INSCRUTABLE realm where his ways are mysterious. So which is it?

    Contradiction? What contradiction? God loves us, but He doesn’t need anything, He’s an all-powerful, all-knowing God who obviously thought it worth while to create humans.

    Forget the untouchable God. That’s just unrealistic. God is a personal God who is outside of time, and He is capable of love.

    I apologize if I’m wrong, but I think that your definition of love may be different than the definition I use.

  94. D Says:

    For some reason, it seems less aggravating to debate with you (no offense at all intended). Normally, I get really frustrated and I have to think about the things you say, but now, I find it much easier to point out your mistakes. Guess all I needed was a break and some meditation (not the buddhism kind, mind you).

    Hmmm….

    Anyway, God bless. Have a nice day.

  95. evanescent Says:

    “What does god lack?” That’s exactly the question I asked you. What did god lack in order to desire anything?

    God knew us before we existed. Did I not point this out already? If God knows everything that will happen, and knows us as people, not just little creatures running around this dark mud-ball we call Earth, which means that God already loved us, and He still does.

    So god loves us before he created us? Even before he decided to create us? Or was he always going to create us? Was it inevitable for god to create us? So god doesn’t have free will then? Excellent. Thanks for refuting your own god for me D! 😉

    Let’s suppose that I go into the future, and meet someone and I love them like family. I then go back to the past. Do I love them, or do I simply have the potential to love them? I already love them of course! Do you now understand?

    No, sorry. Because they already exist, so you’ve loved them in the past. But humans didn’t exist in god’s past. Oh he’s outside of time, whatever that means.

    Are you comparing god to a human being? We know that humans love people, but human beings have needs and desires. Why does god need?

    If god can see into a possible future and love something that he can create, then there are a billion potential beings he can create and he loves all of them, even though they don’t exist. Why doesn’t he create them then? It makes no sense.

    Sorry D, the “love” explanation means nothing. God is sitting around for all eternity, timeless, and after infinity, realises that he’s going to create something all along. Why? Because he loves them? Loves who? The creation. But they’re not created yet. Ah, says god, that’s why I was going to create them all along, because I love them. Love who? The creation. But they’re not created yet —- god gets a migraine.

    Why did he think it was worthwhile to create humans? Since there was nothing except god, how could creating humans possibly improve anything? In fact, since humans ended up in a right old sinful mess, god actually made a huge boo boo by creating humans. There was god, and god is perfect. Perfection cannot be improved upon, so god wouldn’t need to DO anything, let alone create anything.

    I apologize if I’m wrong, but I think that your definition of love may be different than the definition I use.

    Well, when I say “love” I refer to an emotion where you would never, say, allow someone you love to burn alive for all eternity. So yes, perhaps we do have different definitions.

    For some reason, it seems less aggravating to debate with you (no offense at all intended). Normally, I get really frustrated and I have to think about the things you say, but now, I find it much easier to point out your mistakes.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Oh, D. I hope you keep coming back to my blog. If nothing else, than for pure comedy value!

  96. D Says:

    “What does god lack?” That’s exactly the question I asked you. What did god lack in order to desire anything?

    I see what you are saying now. God desires our love for Him and He desires to be with us. I suppose that would be all that He lacks.

    So god loves us before he created us? Even before he decided to create us? Or was he always going to create us? Was it inevitable for god to create us? So god doesn’t have free will then? Excellent. Thanks for refuting your own god for me D! 😉

    This is the entertainment I come here for.

    God always wanted to create us. It was His decision, but since He isn’t within time, He always wanted to create us. After all, He knew us before He created us, therefore He loved us and created us.

    I suggest you stop making a fool out of yourself. You should actually think about things once in a while, it helps.;)

    No, sorry.

    And this is the kind of ignorance that made Jesus refer to humans as sheep.

    Because they already exist, so you’ve loved them in the past. But humans didn’t exist in god’s past. Oh he’s outside of time, whatever that means.

    I say again. Let’s say I go to the future, about 100 years from now. Yadayada, you read the scenario. Next, I return to the past, and guess what? The person doesn’t exist 100 years ago, so it looks like I wouldn’t really love them, in your opinion.

    What are you talking about, “humans didn’t exist in God’s past”? That makes no sense. 100 years from now, someone will exist that doesn’t exist currently. In the same way, humans obviously exist now, so in the past, humans didn’t exist, but God, being the all-knowing being He is, loved us because He could see us in the future, and love us.

    If you don’t understand at this point, you can’t be that bright.

    Are you comparing god to a human being? We know that humans love people, but human beings have needs and desires. Why does god need?

    God doesn’t need anything. I told you that. He is an all-powerful being, therefore, He doesn’t need anything. Sure, He can desire something, but He doesn’t need anything.

    Sorry D, the “love” explanation means nothing. God is sitting around for all eternity, timeless, and after infinity, realises that he’s going to create something all along. Why? Because he loves them? Loves who? The creation. But they’re not created yet. Ah, says god, that’s why I was going to create them all along, because I love them. Love who? The creation. But they’re not created yet —- god gets a migraine.

    Atheism means nothing. God is outside of time. Think of time as a container, and we and the whole universe is in it. Is the universe subject to time? Yes. Is God subject to time? No, where God resides, there is no time flow. What can we conclude? That God is outside of time and can see all that will happen. So, if God could always see all that would happen, wouldn’t He be able to love humans? Of course! I believe Geno used the parade example to explain God being outside of time, and that was clear enough for me.

    No, humans weren’t created yet. Yes, God can and always could see the future. So, if God can see the future, He would be able to love His creation that He hasn’t created yet. Doesn’t a parent love his/her child before they are born? Yes. So what’s the difference?

    Why did he think it was worthwhile to create humans? Since there was nothing except god, how could creating humans possibly improve anything? In fact, since humans ended up in a right old sinful mess, god actually made a huge boo boo by creating humans. There was god, and god is perfect. Perfection cannot be improved upon, so god wouldn’t need to DO anything, let alone create anything.

    Because He wanted to create humans. Why? Because He loved and loves us still. “But He didn’t create us yet.” Irrelevant. God is outside of time and can see the future, therefore He knew us already. Of course, since there was no time flow, there was no “before.” That means that God knew us already because there was no passage of time between creation (of time) and…..well….not-creation (of time).

    Well, when I say “love” I refer to an emotion where you would never, say, allow someone you love to burn alive for all eternity. So yes, perhaps we do have different definitions.

    It isn’t God’s fault that you’ll likely burn dead (not alive. hell is eternal death). Blame the devil, it’s his fault. God gives those He loves a choice. Would a parent prevent his/her child from ever making a bad decision by preventing the child from ever making a decision? Would you make sure that your child never made a choice just so they’d never make a bad one? Of course not. God gave Satan a choice, and satan abused it and made the wrong choice, and he takes his revenge on God by making humans (God’s most loved creation) suffer eternally, but God stepped in and allowed humans to choose, but He isn’t going to simply force us into Heaven. After all, it’s our choice, and if we refuse to even believe that God exists, how will we get to Heaven? How will you receive the gift if you choose to refuse that it, or even the One offering it to you, exists?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Oh, D. I hope you keep coming back to my blog. If nothing else, than for pure comedy value!

    Three “Ha”s too many. You must want to drive me away so I don’t refute you.;) lol. It’s too easy to refute you, yet impossible to teach you anything, let alone change your mind on a subject you simply refuse to accept. I’m quite aware that I can’t change anyone’s mind over the internet, but I might as well give you something to think about. The only flaw with that plan, is that you don’t appear to think about anything, but at least I can let the readers see at least some reason and logic here.

  97. evanescent Says:

    I see what you are saying now. God desires our love for Him and He desires to be with us. I suppose that would be all that He lacks.

    So before we came along, god was imcomplete, lacking. So he’s not perfect.

    He would be able to love His creation that He hasn’t created yet. Doesn’t a parent love his/her child before they are born? Yes. So what’s the difference?

    Ha, but a parent doesn’t love a non-existing child! That’s ridiculous, but kudos on shooting yourself in the foot.

    I don’t have kids yet. Do I love the potential kids I might have? No! What, do humans sit around all day thinking “awww that lovely sweet kid Amy I’m going to have in 20 years time, oh how I love her. Best get cracking on bringing her around”??? Awful, awful logic.

    The rest of your post about outside of time etc is just pure unadulterated waffle. You don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. This “outside of time” rhetoric is Theistspeak for “I don’t have a clue how it works but it must.” If you really have some superhuman knowledge of the extratime and god etc, why haven’t you won a Noble Prize yet? You’re just making stuff up that you can’t possibly know.

    As for hell, yawn: god loves me. He REALLY REALLY REALLY REALLY REALLY does. So when he leaves NO proof of his existence and then in his all-knowingness and all-powerfulness DESTINES me for eternal torture for not-believing, it’s because he loves me? This is pure rubbish.

    Would any human parent allow their child to be burned alive (or dead?? whatever that means) in any circumstances? Answer the question. No. There.

    How will you receive the gift if you choose to refuse that it, or even the One offering it to you, exists?

    Well, no offence D, but if there’s a god I really doubt that his chosen method to save my soul is to send an ignorant young theist full of his own self-importance and no experience or knowledge of the subject at hand, to comment on blogs. He leaves no evidence of his existence. Not one theologist in history has ever given an successful argument or evidence for god. The bible is replete with laughable errors and contradictions. But, step aside, here comes D who doesn’t know the difference between atheist and agnostic – he will silence the atheists!

    And all god needs to do is speak a few words to the whole world at once and we’d all believe! Instead he sends people like you. Funny that eh?

    Personally D, I hope you keep posting on my blog. For one, comedy value. Two:

    but at least I can let the readers see at least some reason and logic here.

    Yes, you certainly do give me the opportunity to do this.

  98. D Says:

    So before we came along, god was imcomplete, lacking. So he’s not perfect.

    How do you figure that? He simply lacked us. How does that mean that He’s imperfect?

    Ha, but a parent doesn’t love a non-existing child! That’s ridiculous, but kudos on shooting yourself in the foot.

    Do I have to use my loving-someone-who-will-exist-in-the-future analogy again?

    I don’t have kids yet. Do I love the potential kids I might have? No! What, do humans sit around all day thinking “awww that lovely sweet kid Amy I’m going to have in 20 years time, oh how I love her. Best get cracking on bringing her around”??? Awful, awful logic.

    You have no room to call my logic awful. I was talking about an unborn baby. Sure, the parent doesn’t know that child, but they love it all the same.

    The rest of your post about outside of time etc is just pure unadulterated waffle. You don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. This “outside of time” rhetoric is Theistspeak for “I don’t have a clue how it works but it must.” If you really have some superhuman knowledge of the extratime and god etc, why haven’t you won a Noble Prize yet? You’re just making stuff up that you can’t possibly know.

    This coming from the one who believes that arguments are won by simply saying, “No. You are wrong, you idiot.”

    Yes, of course. I must be making this up. It makes perfect sense, but it can’t be true, after all, you are obviously the smartest person in the world.

    Seriously, I even explained what outside of time meant, and you still ridicule me.

    You act as if you know everything, yet no Nobel Prize to be found.

    As for hell, yawn: god loves me. He REALLY REALLY REALLY REALLY REALLY does. So when he leaves NO proof of his existence and then in his all-knowingness and all-powerfulness DESTINES me for eternal torture for not-believing, it’s because he loves me? This is pure rubbish.

    Do you even pay attention to me? Even a little? I have explained time and time again, hell and suffering and why humans are destined for hell (on their own part) and all of that. Might I direct you to an earlier comment of mine:

    It isn’t God’s fault that you’ll likely burn dead (not alive. hell is eternal death). Blame the devil, it’s his fault. God gives those He loves a choice. Would a parent prevent his/her child from ever making a bad decision by preventing the child from ever making a decision? Would you make sure that your child never made a choice just so they’d never make a bad one? Of course not. God gave Satan a choice, and satan abused it and made the wrong choice, and he takes his revenge on God by making humans (God’s most loved creation) suffer eternally, but God stepped in and allowed humans to choose, but He isn’t going to simply force us into Heaven. After all, it’s our choice, and if we refuse to even believe that God exists, how will we get to Heaven? How will you receive the gift if you choose to refuse that it, or even the One offering it to you, exists?

    Would any human parent allow their child to be burned alive (or dead?? whatever that means) in any circumstances? Answer the question. No. There.

    Would any human parent give their child a choice? Yes. You wouldn’t, which is why you’d make a horrible parent. What you are telling me is that God shouldn’t give humans a choice and shouldn’t have given satan (formerly the angel of light) a choice.
    Actually, God is the parent who doesn’t want us to burn, but some of the children don’t believe they will, nor do they believe that God even exists, so how then, will God stop them? Take away all free will? I doubt that. God isn’t going to force humans into Heaven if they don’t want to go. He knows that humans are smarter than that, He knows that we’ll choose the right choice if we just open our minds and listen to Him.

    Well, no offence D, but if there’s a god I really doubt that his chosen method to save my soul is to send an ignorant young theist full of his own self-importance and no experience or knowledge of the subject at hand, to comment on blogs. He leaves no evidence of his existence. Not one theologist in history has ever given an successful argument or evidence for god. The bible is replete with laughable errors and contradictions. But, step aside, here comes D who doesn’t know the difference between atheist and agnostic – he will silence the atheists!

    Don’t be shy, you know that you meant as much offense as possible, and I’m fine with that, because I’ve refuted you time and time again, even though, AS I SAID BEFORE, that it is impossible to change a person’s mind over the internet, but I might as well give the readers something to think about.

    Allow me to open my dictionary.

    Atheism: “disbelief or denial of the existence of God. 2. Godlessness”

    Agnosticism: “A theory that does not deny God but denies the possibility of knowing Him.”

    And that, my not-friend, is agnosticism and atheism defined.

    And all god needs to do is speak a few words to the whole world at once and we’d all believe! Instead he sends people like you. Funny that eh?

    I don’t care if you’re in college and you think that everything revolves around you and moves against Christians. God doesn’t force us into Heaven, because that would be wrong. It would be just like a parent taking away all of his/her child’s freedom, which IS wrong.

    Yes, you certainly do give me the opportunity to do this.

    Too bad you never take that opportunity. Luckily, I can carry your weight and mine, and show the readers a sufficient amount of logic and reason.

  99. evanescent Says:

    Ok

  100. Twelve Says:

    Tired already?

  101. DaVinci Says:

    Evanescent, is it possible to block people from making comments on your blog, or do you just have the patients of Job? I dont know if these theists are just wasting your time, or they really are that stupid.

  102. evanescent Says:

    Hi DaVinci, I wouldn’t mind debating with any theists no matter how infuriating they were if they were logical and didn’t just repeat themselves (and were reasonably polite), and admitted that they were prepared to be proven wrong.

    Then there are those that admit you’ll never change their mind, and they know all they need to know, even though you have to explain things to them time and again, like the correct definition of agnosticism. With these types of theists it’s usually just a waste of time to argue!

  103. Twelve Says:

    Evanescent, is it possible to block people from making comments on your blog, or do you just have the patients of Job? I dont know if these theists are just wasting your time, or they really are that stupid.

    Shall words of wind have an end?
    If I really was as stupid as you claim, someone would have shown me my alleged stupidity, and thus far, eva has failed to do so. On the contrary, eva has demonstrated eva’s own ignorance toward reality, in my opinion, which probably means nothing to anyone who argues with insults and objections without support.

    ________________________________
    eva,

    and didn’t just repeat themselves

    I only repeat myself because you do. I’m not the one asking the same questions over and over again.

  104. evanescent Says:

    If I really was as stupid as you claim, someone would have shown me my alleged stupidity, and thus far, eva has failed to do so.

    You sticking your fingers in your ears shouting “la la la la I can’t hear you!” doesn’t count towards not being shown to be stupid.

    You’ve been well and truly destroyed in every argument we’ve had Twelve. Time to grow up. Until you buck up your ideas, you’re not worth my attention.

  105. Twelve Says:

    You sticking your fingers in your ears shouting “la la la la I can’t hear you!” doesn’t count towards not being shown to be stupid.

    Lol. You know, you can be really childish at times, and it’s very amusing.

    You’ve been well and truly destroyed in every argument we’ve had Twelve.

    Now THAT is irony.

    Time to grow up.

    Let it go already. It’s okay. If you want to believe that some kid is refuting your each and every argument, that’s fine with me.

    Until you buck up your ideas, you’re not worth my attention.

    Good. That means that the readers don’t have to suffer your onslaught of ignorance and arrogance (don’t argue with that, you know it’s true). You won’t follow through with that statement, that much I know.

    Look, just debate already. All you’ve done is this:

    You: “Nuh-uh, you’re wrong.”
    Me: “Prove it.”
    You: “You’re wrong.”

    I have to say, that gets irritating after a while.
    Unless you start using real arguments, you aren’t worth my time either, but the readers are. And yes, you do sound that childish, at least to me.

    ______________________________________

    Now answer my comment:
    _______________________________________

    Allow me to open my dictionary.

    Atheism: “disbelief or denial of the existence of God. 2. Godlessness”

    Agnosticism: “A theory that does not deny God but denies the possibility of knowing Him.”

    And that, my not-friend, is agnosticism and atheism defined.
    ___

    Would any human parent give their child a choice? Yes. You wouldn’t, which is why you’d make a horrible parent. What you are telling me is that God shouldn’t give humans a choice and shouldn’t have given satan (formerly the angel of light) a choice.
    Actually, God is the parent who doesn’t want us to burn, but some of the children don’t believe they will, nor do they believe that God even exists, so how then, will God stop them? Take away all free will? I doubt that. God isn’t going to force humans into Heaven if they don’t want to go. He knows that humans are smarter than that, He knows that we’ll choose the right choice if we just open our minds and listen to Him.

    __

    Do you even pay attention to me? Even a little? I have explained time and time again, hell and suffering and why humans are destined for hell (on their own part) and all of that. Might I direct you to an earlier comment of mine:

    It isn’t God’s fault that you’ll likely burn dead (not alive. hell is eternal death). Blame the devil, it’s his fault. God gives those He loves a choice. Would a parent prevent his/her child from ever making a bad decision by preventing the child from ever making a decision? Would you make sure that your child never made a choice just so they’d never make a bad one? Of course not. God gave Satan a choice, and satan abused it and made the wrong choice, and he takes his revenge on God by making humans (God’s most loved creation) suffer eternally, but God stepped in and allowed humans to choose, but He isn’t going to simply force us into Heaven. After all, it’s our choice, and if we refuse to even believe that God exists, how will we get to Heaven? How will you receive the gift if you choose to refuse that it, or even the One offering it to you, exists?

    __

    So before we came along, god was imcomplete, lacking. So he’s not perfect.

    How do you figure that? He simply lacked us. How does that mean that He’s imperfect?

  106. Twelve Says:

    All you said to that was, “ok,” and you left it at that, then tried to argue with insults later. This leads me to believe that you don’t have an answer, but if you really do have an answer, then kindly answer.

  107. evanescent Says:

    Values and desires, wants and needs, are born out of sentient beings needing and wanting to live; all value begins with self-survival and then proceeds from there; from valuing food to valueing friendship, to avoiding danger and risk and harm, and having desires that fill gaps in lives. None of this applies to a perfect being. It would lack anything we could remotely refer to as values, wants, or needs.

    These things are born out of desiring more than one has, or wanting something than one does not possess, or seeking to improve a state of affairs in one’s situation.

    “God” cannot be harmed or killed, ever. God cannot be improved upon, or bettered. I cannot value any change in its circumstances and it cannot possibly bring about a better state of affairs unless the state of affairs was insufficient. If god created humans, it was attempting to bring about a better state of affairs or improve something. But this is absurd if god is wholly perfect, needless, and wantless. It reduces his actions to mere caprice; the act of creation was therefore irrational.

  108. Twelve Says:

    Values and desires, wants and needs, are born out of sentient beings needing and wanting to live; all value begins with self-survival and then proceeds from there; from valuing food to valueing friendship, to avoiding danger and risk and harm, and having desires that fill gaps in lives. None of this applies to a perfect being. It would lack anything we could remotely refer to as values, wants, or needs.

    Pretty words. Still irrelevant, though. God lacked humans, and loved humans (I explained why), so He created them. Simple enough. But how does that contribute to God being imperfect?

    If god created humans, it was attempting to bring about a better state of affairs or improve something.

    Or just create something He loved, no matter how stupid we are.

    But this is absurd if god is wholly perfect, needless, and wantless. It reduces his actions to mere caprice; the act of creation was therefore irrational.

    It is my understanding that what you are saying goes something like this:
    “If God didn’t need humans, it was stupid of Him to create them.”

    I question that.

    Why not create humans? He loved us enough to give us free will, and enough to create us. And it wasn’t a bad idea to create humans either. Originally, humans were perfect, and we were given the chance to decide for ourselves. Then we screwed up, and now a demented being almost as powerful as God wants to torture us eternally, because God loves us, and the best revenge would be to destroy what God loves most, not to mention that Christians, after they die and go to Heaven and become perfect, rank higher than any angel, including satan. Although this all sounds way out there, it makes sense. It has to. There is no other explanation.

    As I type, I question my beliefs, and they still make sense. It all fits together and lead up to one conclusion: humans are evil by nature, but we couldn’t have been created that way, originally, because a perfect, omnipotent being wouldn’t create other beings that were evil by nature, and an evil being would torture us worse than what we now suffer (because of our own mistake, mind you). This means that if there is a God, He is perfect and created us (and some other type of being, in Christianity’s case, angels) with the ability of free will, and somehow, we screwed up and now have to face the consequences.

    I’ll go ahead and leave it at that, and allow you to question if there is an omnipotent being.

    But do you really believe that a simple explosion (from nothing, by the way. Unless something eternal is included, and with the power to create all that exists, you must agree that the explosion came from nothing.) created the entire universe along with humans and every other living creature, all apparently with the ability to adapt in the matter of 60 seconds, which is probably how long they’d have to adapt before they died due to the wrong conditions, or simply landed on the PERFECT spot that provided each organism with perfect conditions to survive, not to mention, that humans somehow gained the ability to reason, and according to you, gained a sense of morality at one point in time, and I doubt that morality comes from an explosion.

    I pondered this, and came up with a question: why does 1+1=2? Because it does? For you make-believe experts, that shouldn’t be good enough. Why are things the way they are? The simple things. Why does 1+1=2? If you can answer that without saying something with the same effect as “Because it does,” I’ll be amazed. I’m just questioning your methods. I can answer those questions, but let’s see you answer them properly.

  109. evanescent Says:

    Pretty words. Still irrelevant, though. God lacked humans, and loved humans (I explained why), so He created them. Simple enough. But how does that contribute to God being imperfect?

    That’s your response? You expect me to give your comments the time of day when you show intellectual laziness like this?

    Or just create something He loved, no matter how stupid we are.

    We’ve been through this and your response was insufficient. This is your problem 12: you assume you’ve answered a question but you haven’t. How can you love something that didn’t exist?

    God exists. He is alone in something. He is perfect. There is nothing else in existence. He cannot die. He cannot hurt or die. He needs nothing to sustain his life or better him.

    Now, humans have values because there are things we need and want. This is why we VALUE things. This is also why we love. If humans could live without food, we wouldn’t value it. If humans could live without companionship, we wouldn’t LOVE other people. None of this applies to god! By definition, god cannot value anything. So why would he bring about a change by creating SOMETHING for no reason at all? Creation is impossible or irrational.

    You cannot refute this, unless you say that god’s “values” are different somehow to ours, but

    1. you have no way to justify this and there is no reason to grant it

    2. it would redefine ‘values’ to a different meaning that we don’t understand so you yourself wouldn’t understand what god values or not, so you certainly cannot claim to understand or pretend to know

    and now a demented being almost as powerful as God wants to torture us eternally, because God loves us

    Jesus said a rotten tree cannot produce good fruit, and a good true cannot produce rotten fruit. So: where did Satan come from?

    I know: he was invented retrospectively to give god a supernatural enemy and try to explain the Problem of Evil.

    humans are evil by nature, but we couldn’t have been created that way, originally, because a perfect, omnipotent being wouldn’t create other beings that were evil by nature

    How do you walk with all those bullets in your feet? You’ve just shown the circularity of your argument.

    To be evil by nature means we were created that way. At one point did humans suddenly change their nature? To be human is to be finite, by nature. To not be able to fly, by nature. To reason and love, by nature. To be susceptible to death and injury, by nature. What does it mean to be evil, by nature? And yet, to NOT be created this way?

    How do you escape this? Well, you’ve just shown how: pure question begging: We couldn’t have been created evil, because that means god would have created us evil, and he didn’t. Loop the loop anyone?

    which is probably how long they’d have to adapt before they died due to the wrong conditions, or simply landed on the PERFECT spot that provided each organism with perfect conditions to survive

    Are we back to your total ignorance of evolution again? I’m not going through this again. I’ve written about evolution many times. Go and read those articles.

    and I doubt that morality comes from an explosion

    Strawman. No one said it did.

    why does 1+1=2,

    Because existence exists. It exists and also does not NOT exist. Therefore existence = 1 and not 0. It cannot exist and also not exist. Ergo a rule of logic. Logic is a corollary of existence. When a single something exists and there is no other version of that something, we say there is ONE of it. That is human language given terms to the observed principles of logic. When there is another SOMETHING, we say there is two of it.

    Once you postulate logic, all else follows. Perhaps the rules of our universe would be different in another universe. But logic is a necessary phenomenon of existence. Even a “god” would be limited by logic.

  110. Twelve Says:

    I’m just going to skip your comment, and attack the post again.

    Premise 1: All (purposed) actions are prompted by need, want, or desire.

    Premise 2: A perfect immutable being has no needs, wants or desire.

    Premise 3: God is a being as described by premise 2.

    Premise 4: Creation would have been the (purposed) action of the creator.

    Premise 5: The universe exists.

    From P 1 & 2: God does not need, want, or desire anything.

    Conclusion: the universe couldn’t have been created.

    Premise #2 does not apply to the God of the Bible, because the God of the Bible does have wants and desires, but does not have needs. I take it that you consider desires to implicate weakness, but the God of the Bible desires justice, but doesn’t need it. Is desiring justice weak? The God of the Bible desires peace and justice, but does not need it.
    Therefore, Premise #2 does not apply to the God of the Bible, leaving premise #3, and the Conclusion false, assuming you were referring to the God of the Bible.

  111. Twelve Says:

    My apologies. I left a bit out:

    God created humans to love them and to display his love to what He had already created.

  112. evanescent Says:

    Twelve, I have a standard to maintain on my blog. I hope for lively discussion and healthy debate between intelligent educated individuals. You consistency fall below this level, with an air of arrogance and total ignorance of the subjects at hand, so I have to draw the line somewhere. You aren’t adding anything to the discussion and keep lowering the level of conversation. I simply have better ways to spend my time. When I debate with you, I have this overriding (and justified) sense that I’m arguing with a child.

    You can draw whatever conclusions you wish from this. And I leave it to my readers to infer their own opinions. At the very least, you’ve increased the comedy value of my blog, albeit unintentionally. But it’s time to call it a day.

    Twelve is hereby banned from commenting on my blog.

  113. Jeff Says:

    Creator is impossible!? Oh well… then tell my why if you see a primitive picture on the wall of an ancient cave, you assume that it is made by a conscience observer with intelligence. But you also assume that the observer himself (who is million times more complex than this picture), was created by nature. Very strange logic.

    People from eveolution camp – please look around. Do you really, honestly believe that the complexity of genes as the product of random natural selection? The chances for these genes to be created and put together in a right way but randomly are plain ZERO.


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