existencegod

I just read a blog post by an atheist entitled

The Five Best Reasons Not to Believe in God

and I was intrigued. Because I am of the belief that truth can withstand scrutiny, I am always eager to look at ideas contrary to my beliefs to see if they stand up. The blogger’s post received over 1,600 likes, so I thought a lot of people seem to agree with him, maybe he has some compelling arguments.

I am going to breakdown his five reasons over several upcoming posts, which are;

His Introduction

  1. There is No Evidence for God
  2. Belief in God is Illogical
  3. Suffering Negates His Existence
  4. We Don’t Need God
  5. Life is Better Without God

You may agree with one or all of these reasons, but do you know why you agree? All of us at some point in our lives realize there are things that we have believed but never really thought about why. Sometimes it’s just because that’s what we have always been told and never gave any more thought. Often these beliefs are not based on any evidence we have seen at all, but just hearsay from others.

There is no bigger questions in human existence than the questions why am I here, and is there anything after this life? I hope you will take the time to investigate these questions more deeply than maybe you have before. You will find that there are very good reasons to believe that God does exist and you do have a future beyond this life. So I encourage you to take a real look at these questions for yourself. I think you will be very surprised just how much evidence for God scientists have uncovered in the last decade. Science is not distancing us from belief in God, it is making God harder to ignore.

Take a look at a few of his opening statements.

Most religions, at best, have some kernels of morality that come with a lot of baggage that make people do appalling things. The world can do without religion. Here are five reasons why…

… my hope and goal is that the belief in God, and the religions that underpin it, are wiped from the face the earth.

[Daily Maverick by Jarred Cinman 26 February 2015]

Because he is challenging the foundations of my Christian beliefs, I thought I would take a look at the underpinnings of what he believes, and see if he offers a reasonable case.

In the interest of clarity, I will be advocating for belief in the God of the bible, not the host of other gods for which I agree with the writer, there is no evidence to believe in them. I don’t agree with him as far as his assertion that [most] or all religions, cause people to do appalling things. For example, I would draw a distinction between the Buddhist Monk who believes all life is sacred and will not even step on a bug, and the religious zealot who believes his god will reward him for blowing himself up along with others the zealot deems unworthy to live.

I think we can also agree that both religions and atheism have had people use those ideals to further their own evil agendas, more on that HERE.

It might also be important to know what what constitutes a reasonable argument so you are not fooled into believing something unlikely to be true. Here are three types of arguments.

Deductive 

  1. Premise, or reason one: All humans are mortal
  2. Premise two: President Obama is a human
  3. Conclusion, President Obama is mortal

In this argument the premises guarantee the conclusion. Given that the premises are true and accurate, the conclusion cannot be false. This is a sound argument. Deductive reasoning can only be used when facts are verifiable or known to be true. Therefore, deductive reasoning can not be used for subjects that require an inferences to the best explanation of things when considering competing ideas, such as does God exist, or how did the universe come into being.

Inductive

  1. Almost all humans are mortal
  2. Obama is human
  3. Therefore, Obama is mortal

Given all the available statistical data, there is a more reasonable chance that Obama is mortal than not.

Abductive

  1. Every human I have met are mortal
  2. The best explanation or inference of this is that all humans are mortal
  3. Therefore, all humans are mortal

A combination of inductive (statistical) and abductive (inference to the best explanation) are the forms of logic that are best used to argue for belief in God.

The premises or reasons that support the conclusion must relate to each other, and the conclusion, and the conclusion must follow from the premises as they do above. A flawed or invalid argument is as follows;

  • All humans are mortal
  • Christian’s believe in God
  • if God exists, he is not mortal

These statements though true do not constitute a valid argument. The conclusion does not follow from (has no relation to) the premises. Also, the second premise is not related to the first. The argument is illogical and not to be believed.

prem·ise 

preməs

noun

LOGIC
  •  a previous statement or proposition from which another is inferred or follows as a conclusion.
“if the premise is true, then the conclusion must be true.”
o·pin·ion
əˈpinyən
noun
  •  a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.

OK, let’s dig into the posters reasons for not believing God exists, and assess the reasoning that support his conclusion. But before we do that, I want to look at his opening statements regarding

  • Most (All?) religions
  • Most (All?) religious morality causes appalling behavior
  • The world would be better off without God

By stating “most” and not “all”, the writer leaves the possibility open that there are some religions that are in fact beneficial to society. For his statements to be persuasive, the following must be true.

  1. Most [all?] religions must be equally and inherently bad
  2. Most [all?] religions must make people do appalling things
  3. The writer must offer his, or other’s expertise on every world religion
  4. The writer’s personal morality is the true measure of what is right
  5. Morality exists apart from God, and is not built into every being whether they heed to it or not.

The first two statements are demonstrably false. One need only to contrast the Buddhist first and most important precept is the precept to refrain from destroying living creature. Or the Hindu/Jain doctrine of ahimsa (non-harming), with the religious zealot who believes his god will reward him for throwing non conformists off of rooftops, or blowing themselves up along with unbelievers. Then consider the contribution Christianity has made to the founding of modern science, hospitals and university education.

The forth statement is simply a subjective assertion. Let look at his five best reasons not to believe in God.

ORIGINAL BLOG POST

His Reasons;

  1. There is No Evidence for God
  2. Belief in God is Illogical
  3. Evil and Suffering Negates the Existence of God
  4. We Don’t Need God
  5. Life is Better Without God

Are these some of the reasons you also may not believe God exists? Over my next several posts, I will delve further into the writers reasoning not to believe in God and provide reasons why his arguments are invalid as well as offer reason why belief in God is more reasonable.

my hope and goal is that the belief in God, and the religions that underpin it, are wiped from the face the earth. [“five Best Reasons Not to Believe in God”]

I too share the hope that reason and logic may cause someone to rethink their position on God’s existence.

The writer’s opening objection is the claim that there is no evidence in support for the existence of God, and he is quite emphatic.

Fact: no-one has ever presented one iota of persuasive evidence that there is a God.

Is this in fact a true statement? Does stating the claim is a fact, make it so? In the next post we will see if there is more substance than assertion to his argument.

 

Robert J.

 

 

Advertisements