RE: [asa] The theist challenge

From: Dehler, Bernie <bernie.dehler@intel.com>
Date: Mon Dec 01 2008 - 13:00:03 EST

Schwarzwald said:
"If my faith in Christianity ever faltered, the logical step for me would be deism or some broader variety of theism. Atheism just strikes me as intellectually the least justifiable option on the table."

If the Christian God could be disproven or falsified, you might wonder which religion is better. Seems to me that Christianity is the best religion. If falsified, then why bother in a God that might exist, but is too lame (or He doesn't care) to reveal himself. It might boil down to "God may exist, but if so, He's irrelevant to me." May as well ignore God if He ignores us- a functional atheist.

________________________________
From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On Behalf Of Schwarzwald
Sent: Monday, December 01, 2008 9:50 AM
To: asa@calvin.edu
Subject: Re: [asa] The theist challenge

On Mon, Dec 1, 2008 at 12:28 PM, Dehler, Bernie <bernie.dehler@intel.com<mailto:bernie.dehler@intel.com>> wrote:
Moorad said:
"the notion of evil is nonexistent for the atheist."
I've heard atheist Christopher Hitchins say he believes in evil. He says there's bad, then there's people who go overboard into evil. People like Hitler and suicide bombers. He says the solution is to kill these people.

And when he's asked to account for how things are evil given the presuppositions he brings to the table, he's reduced to awkwardness. His debates with Doug Wilson and others have certainly highlighted as much - the sort of 'evil' Hitchens says he believes in is hard to square with his other beliefs.

As for the theist challenge, I'd agree with the general sentiment expressed here - it's a canard, based on a faulty understanding of how these questions are approached. Along the lines of asking 'What fact could you encounter that would falsify your belief that rape is immoral?' Philosophical and metaphysical commitments rarely operate in such a way.

And I'd second Gordon Brown's observations. I'll note that even Paul did not have the standard of 'If Christ did not rise, God does not exist'. In fact, he specifically said that if Christ did not rise, then he and others were doing offense to God by attributing the resurrection to Him. If my faith in Christianity ever faltered, the logical step for me would be deism or some broader variety of theism. Atheism just strikes me as intellectually the least justifiable option on the table.

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Received on Mon Dec 1 13:00:55 2008

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