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May 23, 2012

Comments

I don't see the problem here Gregory. Good and evil are human concepts. Things have no morality. A knife is not evil even if it is used to kill someone. A parasite that causes pain and suffering in its host is not evil. Of course this is only the case if there isn't a god who actually decided to create a parasite that has to cause pain and suffering in something else to survive. This leaves humans. Humans have the EMPATHY to realise that their actions will affect someone in an undesirable way, and the INTELLIGENCE to decide whether to do something or not rather than rely purely on instinct. Good and evil are complex matters, and different persons have different ideas about what is immoral, however this is still a product of our evolution - they are ultimately part of the complex system by which we as humans can live together in a community. You can't have a successful community if individuals kill each other or steal each other's stuff or cheat on each other and so on. That produces what we know as morality.

Greg,

We take it for granted that the claim that God is moral is a substantive one, i.e. that there is some standard of morality independent of God which God satisfies. If you don't think that our standard for morality is independent of God, well, aside from being mistaken, you turn the claim of God's goodness into a trivial tautology at best. So I don't think that's a move you're going to want to make.

Even if you make that move, though, and you think that morality doesn't exist apart from God, then that still doesn't stop the atheist from giving an internal critique of your theology. In other words, the criticism is counterfactual: if God exists then he must satisfy his own standard of goodness. If God ends up not being good, where good is equated to Godliness, then that's going to be incoherent. And incoherent views are never true.

Regards,
Ben

"You can't have a successful community if individuals kill each other or steal each other's stuff or cheat on each other and so on."

What, then is a successful community? Has one ever existed? If the current American community is to be that model, then I would propose that, based upon historical proceedings, that these things are integral to the success of community, which brings us back to moral relativism.

Ben,

A glancing blow at best. But two misconceptions are alive and well within this comment. Don't put the cart before the horse and if morality is indeed objective, then your definition if good is irrelevant.

If one thinks our standard of morality is independent of God they need define it and describe its origin. They’re still in the same place Greg described - that morality is a human construct and everyone is obligated to buy into it that morality.

"No, the atheist has not gotten rid of the problem of evil by rejecting God. He has compounded the problem. The only thing he has gotten rid of is hope."

Hope for what? Your childish cowardly heaven fantasy?

If anyone has a problem it's the theists who don't have one shred of evidence for their god fairy fantasy or anything else. All they have is their wishful thinking and their cowardly fear of reality.

http://darwinkilledgod.blogspot.com/

Human Ape,

As Greg pointed out, the theist must come to terms with the problem of evil. And Greg and others have done this in other posts on STR and other websites. However this post was directed towards atheists. In your post above you do nothing to answer Greg's challenge and instead point the finger back to theists and call them names. Since this article was about the atheist needing to make sense of "Good", do you care to try and do that, or are you content with just calling others names and deflecting?

Darth Dutch

Darth Dutch, since when did telling the truth about religious fantasies have anything to do with calling people "names"? I wrote about heaven. It's a childish and cowardly belief. Do you disagree? Why? Why do you think a grown up would throw out all common sense just to avoid reality?

"Since this article was about the atheist needing to make sense of Good"

The subject is stupid. Make sense of good? This isn't rocket science. I certainly don't need a Bible full of genocide stories and a god who can only be called a thug.

Any child can figure out the difference between right and wrong. Why can't you do that? Do you have some kind of mental problem?

Atheists don't have to answer your ridiculous questions. The problem is for theists to justify their childish fantasies. They can't do that because their beliefs are impossible and insane, and they have no evidence.

Your problem is faith which is nothing more than an excuse to not think.

"FAITH. No one word personifies the absolute worst and most wicked properties of religion better than that. Faith is mind-rot. It’s the poison that destroys critical thinking, undermines evidence, and leads people into lives dedicated to absurdity. It’s a parasite regarded as a virtue." -- PZ Myers

http://darwinkilledgod.blogspot.com/

"No, the atheist has not gotten rid of the problem of evil by rejecting God."

I also reject the Easter Bunny.

I'm sorry but your "the atheist has not gotten rid of the problem of evil" is ridiculously stupid.

The problem of evil has been solved. We throw criminals into prisons. We attack and kill dictators.

Have you considered the advantages of growing up instead of inventing stupid problems to justify your childish god fantasy?

Human Ape, fair warning: You're welcome to stay if you'd like to argue for your position along with the other atheists who post here, but if you continue to merely mock in your comments and/or use them to advertise your blog, you won't be allowed back.

Human Ape,

I'm sure Greg has considered the advantages of growing up instead of inventing stupid problems to justify his childish god fantasy.

Have you considered the advantages of growing up instead of denying the source of existence, life, intelligence, consciousness and goodness?

@Human Ape,

I went to your site. I'm speachless. Seriously. Either its cut and paste or tons of rants and hate.

Human Ape

We get it, you think God is a ridiculous fantasy, mean, etc.

But by reading your comments, I don't think you understand what is being addressed.

Your "solution" of the problem of evil (We throw criminals into prisons. We attack and kill dictators), doesn't address the problem that is presented in the article.

Without some kind of moral absolute you cannot say anything is objectively evil. There is no objective standard to compare it to.

So as far as you know, the dictator could be good and the one "killing him" could be evil. Who are you to say?

Ya gotta love this!

Mr. Ape wrote:

"Darth Dutch, since when did telling the truth about religious fantasies have anything to do with calling people "names"? I wrote about heaven. It's a childish and cowardly belief."

Whose "truth" is this, Mr. Ape? Why should anyone else believe it?

"Any child can figure out the difference between right and wrong." Most children would know that it's wrong to come to a website and immediately ridicule the writer, especially when the visitor is not even addressing or engaging in the subject at hand, but simply venting steam.

"Have you considered the advantages of growing up instead of inventing stupid problems to justify your childish god fantasy?" I would ask you, Mr. Ape, are you an example of what that "growing up" looks like to which we should aspire? This site is for people who have something of importance to contribute to the subject being discussed. If you find it so beneath you to do so, why are you here in the first place?

Ramon

It sounds like you would agree that without a standard, good and evil are not objective things. Just things that we make up to function better.

Of course "better" doesn't have any real standard either.

So if one person suppresses many to function better that would be "good" for him, but "evil" for them.

Hi Ben

"We take it for granted that the claim that God is moral is a substantive one, i.e. that there is some standard of morality independent of God which God satisfies."

This is not true.

If this is the type of stuff you are wondering about, I will just point you in this direction:

http://www.reasonablefaith.org/is-god-morally-praiseworthy

http://www.reasonablefaith.org/the-euthyphro-dilemma-once-more

http://www.reasonablefaith.org/euthyphro-dilemma

Todd,

Thanks for the response. However, even on Craig's view, where goodness is somehow defined by God's nature, we still have to use an external standard to link that definition with our ordinary moral intuitions. Otherwise we end up with the modalities Craig denies---namely that it could have been the case God has a nature to issue commands which we would ordinarily consider immoral, e.g. rape, murder, etc. So even though he thinks that morality somehow is constituted by some part of God's nature, there's no getting away from the fact that we use an external standard for moral semantics.

But as I said, even if you deny an external standard and turn God's goodness into a trivial tautology, then the skeptic can still offer an internal theological critique without actually affirming the existence of good or evil (as defined by the divine command theorist). If it turns out that the theology is incoherent, then it cannot possibly be true.

Regards,
Ben

We take it for granted that the claim that God is moral is a substantive one, i.e. that there is some standard of morality independent of God which God satisfies.

Why should we require the existence a standard independent of the standard in order for a description of the standard as a standard to be substantive?

Suppose we did come up with an independent standard. In that case, we could make the same criticism of that standard, and continue this infinite regression until we throw up our hands and conclude there are no standards at all!

Jesse,

Thanks for the comment. In talking about "God is moral" or "God is good" being substantive claims, I am employing a variation of the open question argument. If moral goodness is defined in terms of God, be it God's nature or his commands or whatever else, then to ask "is God good?" is a closed question, i.e. it is akin to asking, "is water wet?" Or, put in terms of statements instead of questions, the claim that "God is good," if the divine command theorists are right, is about as substantive as the claim that "water is wet." It's trivial---a tautology or something not far from it.

And yet it seems clear that the claim "God is good" says something much more substantive than the claim that "water is wet." So even if goodness is identical to some characteristic of God, or part of his nature, etc., then at the very least we do not identify goodness semantically with God. So for instance, Mark Twain is identical to Samuel Clemens, but nevertheless we mean different things by those names, and so the claim "Mark Twain is Samuel Clemens," even though it is perhaps in some sense necessarily true, is still substantive and informative.

We evaluate claims "X is Mark Twain" and "X is Samuel Clemens" quite differently. In other words, we have different semantic standards for each predicate. Well, in a similar way, we have different semantic standards for Godliness and goodness. It may turn out to be the case that some part of Godliness is identical to goodness, but regardless our semantic standards for deciding what is Godly versus what is good remain quite different.

So with this in mind, let's look at your criticism. You're saying that if we do manage to identify and explicate our semantic standard for goodness, then we can run the same open-question-type argument against that standard. But that seems false. There are plenty of cases where we encounter closed questions, or non-substantive statements, due to overlapping semantic standards. So as I mentioned before, a claim like "water is wet" is not substantive. Similarly, uttering "that bachelor is unmarried" is neither informative. So if we do manage to explicate an accurate semantic standard for moral goodness, then we should expect a claim like "X is good," if X is derivative of that standard, to be similarly trivial.

Now, there is the matter of finding nontriviality in explicating standards. So perhaps if we successfully explicate our semantic standards for goodness, then we will have discovered something about our psychology and/or the function of language which is nontrivial. So saying "X is good" might be trivial insofar as it likens X to goodness, yet nontrivial in the sense that it tells us something previously unknown about how we use language. But it seems to me that "God is good" is neither of these. It is nontrivial, and yet it doesn't inform me at all about how I go about evaluating things as good versus not good, or Godly versus not Godly.

So I don't think your objection works. That is, I don't see how you can successfully re-cast the open question objection to apply to an arbitrary nontheistic semantic standard of moral goodness.

Regards,
Ben

Honestly, Ben, after reading your comments I find myself confused. I think you're trying to demonstrate to us that the Christian belief in God is logically incoherent, but I'm having a hard time drawing that conclusion from your words. Let me ask a few more questions, if I may.

Do you buy the first premise of the open question argument?

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_question_argument:

Premise 1: If X is good, then the question "Is it true that X is good?" is meaningless.

Can this premise be applied generally to any object and its properties? For example would you say the following is true?

If a tomato is red, then the question "is it true that the tomato is red?" is meaningless.

I might not have time to follow up to your response, so let me go ahead and show my cards: I'm not buying it. If X is good, then the question "is X good?" is not meaningless:

1) Meaningless questions do not have correct answers.
2) If X is good, then the question "is X good?" has only one correct answer: "yes".
3) Therefore, the question "is X good?" is not meaningless.

...

But what does this have to do with Greg's original point? We live in a world where we observe objective good and evil. These objective features of reality have no grounding in a strictly materialistic worldview. Worse than having no grounding, these features of reality are necessarily excluded in a materialistic worldview. Therefore materialism fundamentally contradicts reality.

Jesse,

Sure, that wikipedia article probably needs some cleanup work, because I doubt you're the only one who misunderstood the first premise in the argument as stated there. The word "is" has a variety of meanings in different contexts. In the context of the open question argument, it means a kind of equivalence.

"The tomato is red."

In the above sentence, the word "is" plays the role of attributing a property to the tomato. But when we say

"Godliness is goodness"

we are making the much stronger claim that godliness is in some sense equivalent to goodness. In particular, I am referring to semantic equivalence. This was not clear in the wikipedia article, but hopefully it is clear in my comments here.

Remember the Twain/Clemens semantic distinction? We have different semantic standards for evaluating statements about Twain versus statements about Clemens, even though Twain and Clemens are identical. Similarly, even if it happens to be the case that goodness is identical to some part of Godliness, that won't change the fact that we have different semantic standards for evaluating Godliness and goodness. That's what I'm trying to show here.

So, what does this have to do with Greg's original point? Well, it means the skeptic can appeal to the semantic standard of goodness which is independent of God to evaluate whether or not God is good. So contrary to Greg's claims, the skeptic does not have to affirm the existence of good in order to semantically evaluate the claim "God (if he exists) is good," because our semantic standards don't depend on God.

Regards,
Ben

Gregory wrote about the concept that God wrote his Law into human hearts at our birth (Romans 2:13). God describes the source of evil regularly as Satan (most natably in the book of Job) and the willing disobedience of God's standards that leads to problems of conscience. Ramon spoke of this indirectly when he wrote "if individuals kill each other or steal each other's stuff or cheat on each other and so on. That produces what we know as morality" He defined God's standard, written in our hearts, which lets us know good and evil.
The atheist, as Greory points out, now needs to say what makes something evil. What is there standard. Pain, in and of itself, is not evil; it is a sign that something needs to be changed. Pain can be good if we remove the parasite that is causing the pain or treat the injury to our body. It is evil if we just rage against the pain and do nothing to stop the pain--whether caused by humans or ourselves.
God never said he would take away evil in this world. He can't because evil begins when we give in to the temptations of Satan. God only promises that he will take the evil Satan tries to bring into our lives and make it work for our eternal good. If my suffering gets me to look to God for strength and hope (defined as something unseen that will result in good. being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see Hebrews 11:1). We all have hope, atheist or theist alike. We cannot live without hope for the future. The struggle for the atheists is to see any hope if they only have this world. Until they are open to something beyond them, there will be no hope. This is accurately shown in the comments from the atheists.
To be "grown up" is to accept the world as it is and learn to deal with it. christians accept the idea of godo and evil, based on the source from which they derive, and deal with it here so they can really live after this life

John

John,

Contrary to what you and Greg have asserted, it is not necessary to explicate a moral standard in order to exploit it. The skeptic is under no obligation to lay out an exhaustive list of qualifications for moral goodness and evil, or to explicate any other kind of moral standard. It is enough for us to recognize that certain acts, e.g. arbitrarily damaging a person's well-being, are immoral. If God performs these acts, then he is not perfectly moral.

As for the bit about having hope, well, that's really just wishful thinking, I'm sorry to have to say. Even if we would be better off with God than without, that doesn't help us determine what is real and what is not.

Regards,
Ben

Ben,

The skeptic is under no obligation to lay out an exhaustive list of qualifications for moral goodness and evil, or to explicate any other kind of moral standard. It is enough for us to recognize that certain acts , e.g. arbitrarily damaging a person's well-being, are immoral.

Why do you have to recognize it?

Hi Ben

Our concern is with moral ontology, that is to say, the foundation in reality of moral values. Our concern is not with moral semantics, that is to say, the meaning of moral terms.

Read more: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/euthyphro-dilemma#ixzz1vpv17Wm4

This is the type of thing the above article is dealing with.

Todd,

I thought your concern was with my position on an external standard. And as I explained above, I am talking about semantic standards, which Craig acknowledges in the link you just posted are indeed independent of God. In particular, he writes:

The theist is quite ready to say that we have a clear understanding of moral vocabulary like “good,” “evil,” right,” and so on, without reference to God.

So Craig apparently agrees with me that there is indeed a semantic standard of goodness independent of God. The skeptic is therefore free to argue that God is not good (according to our semantic standards) without having to affirm the existence of goodness as envisioned by divine command theorists.

Regards,
Ben

Hi Ben

Not sure you understand Craig correctly. You should ask him.

Yes we can understand moral vocabulary. (amazing isn't it)

But the question in the original post is:

How can anything ultimately be evil or good in a universe bereft of any standard to make sense of the terms?

I guess I would just refer you back up to my prior post.

Todd,

So do you agree (along with myself and WL Craig) that we have semantic standards for moral terms which are independent of God? If so, then it is not true that the universe is "bereft of any standard to make sense of the terms." And if not, then you run into the problem of "God is good" not being a substantive claim.

Regards,
Ben

Todd,

So do you agree (along with myself and WL Craig) that we have semantic standards for moral terms which are independent of God? If so, then it is not true that the universe is "bereft of any standard to make sense of the terms." And if not, then you run into the problem of "God is good" not being a substantive claim.

Regards,
Ben

Hi Ben

I guess it depends on what you mean by independent of God. You don't have to believe in God to have a moral standard.

So the universe does have a moral standard? Where is it?

The benevolent theist's problem is greater than the atheist's, because if you have a god who is all powerful and allows evil, then it is not all good; but if the god is all good and evil exists, then the god is not all powerful. Of course, lots of theists solve that problem by believing in evil gods, or a pantheon in which gods share power.

Notions of evil and good come from human experiences that people feel compelled to explain either through myth or philosophy. People do not experience evil or good only after they have an explanation for these phenomena; if that was the case, children would not experience either. The experience comes first.

An atheist is under no obligation to develop a complex theory about why evil or good exist, because for him, the universe is ultimately meaningless. There is no need to explain something that does not make sense. It just is. How he deals with that in his day-to-day life results in the creation of a specific moral code. Many develop this code based on some version of Utilitarianism, in which the determining consideration of right conduct should be the usefulness of its consequences. It is not useful to have people murdering each other, so murder is 'bad.' It is useful to be able to trust other people, so honesty is 'good.' Good and bad are not absolutes, merely more or less effective ways of running society for the benefit of the largest number of people.

The world's largest atheistic religion gets around the problem of evil by saying that it does not exist - nothing truly 'exists,' everything is perception, which is illusory. And yet they somehow managed to develop a highly complex and effective moral system, based on compassion that has been in place for 2500 years.

Todd,

Do you agree that we can have a meaningful moral vocabulary even if God does not exist? If so, then we can evaluate God according to our semantic standard for "good" without assuming the existence of goodness as understood by divine command theorists.

Also you ask,

So the universe does have a moral standard?

I think we have semantic standards for our moral vocabulary, regardless of whether God exists. But I don't think there exist any real exemplars for perfect goodness, which is what Craig seems to have in mind when he talks about having an ontological standard.

Regards,
Ben

Hi Ben

It depends on what you mean by meaningful. Can we talk about moral things and understand each other? Of course. But are we talking about things that actually exist? If they do exist, where are they?

Todd,

Well I'm not sure what you mean. Are you asking if I think perfect goodness has a concrete exemplar? No, I don't.

But the important point here is that whether or not goodness has a concrete exemplar, the word "goodness" and its related terms all have real meaning, and we can evaluate actions and characters as being "good" or not. And this is possible because our semantic standards are independent of God, or indeed any hypothetical concrete exemplar.

Regards,
Ben

On just a practical level, if the word "goodness" does indeed have real meaning that all people can comprehend, why is it that some people think abortion, for example, is "good" and others think it's a terrible evil? How do you evaluate that and what is it based upon?

Hi Ben

When you say they have real meaning you don't mean that they have objective real meaning do you?

Todd,

There is a sense in which moral terms have objective meaning, and a sense in which they do not.

The sense in which they are not objective is sort of obvious. Different societies have different values, and so moral language doesn't always have the same meaning across different social contexts.

On the other hand, moral terms are objective in the sense that in our present social context the meaning has been fixed and cannot be changed arbitrarily, if at all. Given this fixing of meaning, moral claims can be really true or really false. So for example, it is really true that murder is wrong. If some crazy guy wants to suggest that murder is not in fact wrong, then he is going to be painfully mistaken, because the meaning of the word "wrong" has been fixed in our society to include stuff like murder, independent of his personal opinion on the subject.

Notice that the existence of God doesn't make any difference to the above observations. Even if God exists, different societies are going to have different moral outlooks. And even if God does not exist, we're going to find those differing moral outlooks genuinely erroneous when we evaluate them against the moral outlook we care about here in our present social context.

Regards,
Ben

Hi Ben

Don't kid your self. Moral terms are changed all the time. Maybe not arbitrarily, but significantly.

But that is not the point, if God doesn't exist, murder is not really objectively wrong.

Todd,

I don't think that's true, but let's suppose for the sake of argument that it is. How does it help to invoke the existence of God?

Regards,
Ben

Hi Ben

Objective morals point to a transcendent immaterial realm.

Todd,

That doesn't really address my question, though. You say that if God does not exist, murder is not "objectively" wrong. I agree that some societies might not consider murder to be "wrong" in the context of their moral semantics. So if that's what you mean by saying that murder is not objectively wrong on atheism, I don't see how anything changes on theism. Even if God exists, those different societies still exist too, right? And murder is okay according to their moral standard, even though (let's say) it is wrong according to God's moral standard.

Invoking the existence of God just adds yet another competing moral standard to all the other moral standards out there.

Regards,
Ben

Hi Ben

Invoking the existence of God doesn't just add "another" competing moral standard, but rather grounds morals standards to an objective reality.

Todd,

What do you mean, "grounds"?

Regardless of whether or not God exists, we have definite semantic standards for moral language, right? So moral utterances (e.g. sentences like "murder is wrong") have factual content, i.e. they express statements which are going to be either true or false.

What, then, does God add? What is the "ground" you think he contributes?

Regards,
Ben

Ben you can talk about morals all you want, but if they don't actually objectively exist you're just babbling about your subjective preferences. (However, they do exist, that is why they carry some weight, even if you don't believe they do)

If you don't see your need for grounding, I'm not sure what I can do.

But it is worse than that.

Part of the reason you visit a website like this and have these types of discussions is that it adds meaning to your life.

However, meaning doesn't really exist in a material world either.

We are just machines, no importance, no meaning, no future.

Why would you spend your time defending such a thing? Especially when there is enough reason to defend something else.

Your created in the image of God, you have value, responsibility, meaning and purpose.

Of course there is also the problem of accountability.

Human Ape

""FAITH. No one word personifies the absolute worst and most wicked properties of religion better than that."

You don't really believe that...do you? You see if you do...you have adopted the worst and most wicked property of religion. If what you claim is true, it is true of both us and you.

Phred

"The benevolent theist's problem is greater than the atheist's, because if you have a god who is all powerful and allows evil, then it is not all good; but if the god is all good and evil exists, then the god is not all powerful."

The underlying assumption of your above statement is that evil cannot be hijacked to accomplish a good thing. Without evil in the world, how would we ever learn to have compassion to the point of taking action to help its victims? How could its victims learn gratitude unless it is through acceptance of compassionate people's help? This mutual learning that takes place causes a kind of moral maturation to take place, which would not be possible without the presence of evil. It makes all of us more sensitive to the importance of morality in our lives and its true value in making this a more loving and caring world.

Ben,

"However, even on Craig's view, where goodness is somehow defined by God's nature, we still have to use an external standard to link that definition with our ordinary moral intuitions. Otherwise we end up with the modalities Craig denies---namely that it could have been the case God has a nature to issue commands which we would ordinarily consider immoral, e.g. rape, murder, etc."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I understand that you are stating that if we deny that God could have defined activities such as rape and murder as okay, then we must base our standard on something outside of God's nature.

If that is the case, I disagree, given that we have God's nature revealed to us in the person of Christ, and that the essential nature of God is summed up in the doctrine of the Trinity. Without this doctrine, then sure, God could have established arbitrary standards, because the only thing necessary to make an act moral would be His divine command. However, if the Trinity is true, then God could not have commanded anything that would go against His nature as revealed in the interactions between the Father, Son, and Spirit. Dr. Dallas Willard has a lot to say in this area.

It's unfortunate that Dr. Craig did not make this point more clear, but I believe that he would agree with it. If the Trinity is not considered, then your point is valid. But given this doctrine, "good" becomes defined by the interaction between the three Persons of the Trinity.

Stephen

Atheists are intellectual adolescents. The fool says in his heart that there is no God. If God were to bow down to the atheist and ask his approval of His judgements then he would accept Him. This will not happen because God is all powerful and as it says in Daniel 4:35, men are nothing. This idea that there is a problem of evil is not a reason for unbelief, it's just an expression of unbelief. I would challenge any atheist to give a reason for why they do anything in life if everything is just "matter in motion". The fact that you are debating assumes the Christian worldview. The laws of logic are not material. Anti theism assumes theism. Just for the record, Christianity is not a religion. It is much more than that. Every religion is about how man must measure up to a gods standard. Christianity begins with the realization that you cannot bridge the chasm between us and God and that a propitiation is needed (Christ). Rebuttals welcome.

Stephen,

I don't see why it couldn't be that God is both Trinitarian AND immoral, but that wasn't my point before. Rather, I'm pointing out that in order to say that God couldn't have this or that sort of nature, we must have some semantic standard for what "sort" we mean. In particular, if we want to say that God couldn't possibly have a nature to do the sort of things we associate with immorality (e.g. rape, murder, etc.) then then we must already have in mind that sort, independent of our concept of God's nature.

Craig apparently agrees that we do have independent semantic standards for our moral vocabulary. He insists that God is necessary in order to have a concrete exemplar for perfect goodness. Now, I doubt that's true, but even if it was, we don't need a concrete exemplar. Semantics are quite enough.

Regards,
Ben

Billy,

Your initial comment about how you judge atheists to be "intellectual adolescents" isn't very promising. I suggest you go easy on the wild accusations.

You appear to be a Van Tilian presuppositionalist. Unfortunately, I've never encountered a coherent Van Tilian argument for the existence of God. You are welcome to surprise me by producing one. You don't have to type it out yourself---a link would be fine.

Now, you wrote:

I would challenge any atheist to give a reason for why they do anything in life if everything is just "matter in motion".

First of all, I'm not a materialist. Second, I have all kinds of varying reasons for my various actions. For instance, I am replying to your post because I am fascinated by presuppositionalism, and I enjoy engaging new people on topics which interest me, especially when they disagree.

The fact that you are debating assumes the Christian worldview... Anti theism assumes theism.

You are welcome to support these claims with reason/evidence/argument/etc.

Regards,
Ben

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