Saturday, July 9, 2016

Every Student Rebuttal, "Does God Exist" Part Two

Time to visit the safe space again!  Let's dive right in.

2. Does God exist? The universe had a start - what caused it? 
Let's see what she says.
Scientists are convinced that our universe began with one enormous explosion of energy and light,
First of all, it wasn't an explosion of 'energy and light.'  It was the literal expansion of the universe, which is time and space.  Light is generally energy, after all.
which we now call the Big Bang.
Fair enough. Some do call it that.  However, the universe is still expanding, it's just doing so at an ever-slower rate. Eventually it will expand so far that it will be infinitely thin with regard to time/space, but we can discuss that in another post if you like.  Time's not linear, either, but we experience it that way.  The center of the universe is the beginning of time.  We might be getting off-track here, though.
This was the singular start to everything that exists: the beginning of the universe, the start of space, and even the initial start of time itself.
Fair enough.  I mean, technically, the initial singularity existed for an infinite time before the expansion.  There was never a 'time' it wasn't there.  It was just infinitely dense, meaning that time had no medium to move through, and matter had no time to move through.  However, I'm getting long in the tooth over this point.
Astrophysicist Robert Jastrow, a self-described agnostic,
Most people are agnostic.  That deals with knowledge, not belief.
stated, "The seed of everything that has happened in the Universe was planted in that first instant; every star, every planet and every living creature in the Universe came into being as a result of events that were set in motion in the moment of the cosmic explosion...The Universe flashed into being, and we cannot find out what caused that to happen."9
Here's a link to that reference.   It was first delivered in 1949.  Here's the closing two paragraphs of that address:
"Some say still that if the astronomer cannot find that cause today, he will find it tomorrow, and we will read about it in the New York Times when Walter Sullivan gets around to reporting on it. But I think the circumstances of the Big Bang-the fiery holocaust that destroyed the record of the past-make that extremely unlikely.
"This is why it seems to me and to others that the curtain drawn over the mystery of creation will never be raised by human efforts, at least in the foreseeable future. Although I am an agnostic, and not a believer, I still find much to ponder in the view expressed by the British astronomer E. A. Milne, who wrote, "We can make no propositions about the state of affairs [in the beginning]; in the Divine act of creation God is unobserved and unwitnessed.
-message from Professor Robert Jastrow 
We knew nearly 60 years ago that we would probably discover the answer eventually.  In context of the first quote up there, he was explicitly saying that they couldn't figure it out at that time. Using the quote out of context as she did is disingenuous at best and deceitful at worst.
Steven Weinberg, a Nobel laureate in Physics, said at the moment of this explosion, "the universe was about a hundred thousands million degrees Centigrade...and the universe was filled with light."10
Here's the link to the book cited in citation ten.  It looks like a pleasant read, even.
The universe has not always existed. It had a start...what caused that? Scientists have no explanation for the sudden explosion of light and matter.
 We do, actually, but she'll have to actually read more books that were printed after 1950.  Krauss' "A Universe from Nothing," and Hawking's "A Brief History of the Universe" are recommended.
3. Does God exist? The universe operates by uniform laws of nature. Why does it?
For one, what other way would you presume it should act?  Sure, they seem to be consistent every time.  We've never observed them being broken.
Much of life may seem uncertain, but look at what we can count on day after day: gravity remains consistent, a hot cup of coffee left on a counter will get cold, the earth rotates in the same 24 hours, and the speed of light doesn't change -- on earth or in galaxies far from us.
Mostly correct.  Notice how none of those were revelations from any god, by the way.  Also, the earth is perpetually slowing down about 1.4 milliseconds per every hundred years or so.  The earth was probably spinning around it's axis every 12 hours or so a few billion years ago.  Of course, the earth was a bit smaller back then too.
How is it that we can identify laws of nature that never change? Why is the universe so orderly, so reliable?
Well, if it weren't ordered as we see it, we'd try to find the order in the disorder, and check that.  People used to (not even four centuries ago) think that the sun went around the earth, as did all the stars and everything.  We even had models which made that consistent.  It didn't stop them from being wrong.  Same way with god.  You can say 'god just makes it so,' but that doesn't make it so.
"The greatest scientists have been struck by how strange this is. There is no logical necessity for a universe that obeys rules, let alone one that abides by the rules of mathematics. This astonishment springs from the recognition that the universe doesn't have to behave this way. It is easy to imagine a universe in which conditions change unpredictably from instant to instant, or even a universe in which things pop in and out of existence."11
This is from Dinesh D'Souza's book "What's so great about Christianity?" However, he hits the nail on the head here.  There's no reason it has to be the way it is; it simply happens that it is this way.

Granted, a universe with inconsistent laws would probably collapse upon itself or something, but there's also nothing preventing another infinite combination of stable universes, either.  We have no way of observing them anyway, so we don't know what the limits are, if there are any at all. We certainly can't test for any god if he's not in the universe, the same as we can't test for any other universes.
Richard Feynman, a Nobel Prize winner for quantum electrodynamics, said, "Why nature is mathematical is a mystery...The fact that there are rules at all is a kind of miracle."12
Let's see what else Feynman has to say, shall we?

Also, she didn't even address why the universe is the way it is.  She just quoted some stuff out of context.
4. Does God exist? The DNA code informs, programs a cell's behavior.
I've also touched on this one before as well.  Basically this whole argument is summed up in one sentence:
You cannot find instruction, precise information like this, without someone intentionally constructing it.
 Where did your god come from?  Also, who's to say we cant?  This is what's called a baseless assertion.  Remember, it's an error of Reification, because the laws of the universe are descriptive, not prescriptive.
5. Does God exist? We know God exists because he pursues us. He is constantly initiating and seeking for us to come to him.
No, he's not.  Thor has never visited me.  Jesus has never patted me on the head.  Quetzalcoatl has never asked me for the heart of a conquered man.  Gilgamesh has never appeared to me and offered to get drunk together.
I was an atheist at one time. And like many atheists, the issue of people believing in God bothered me greatly. What is it about atheists that we would spend so much time, attention, and energy refuting something that we don't believe even exists?! 
For exactly the same reason that theists try to make other theists not believe in any god but their own.  We just simply don't have a god.  You're an atheist in this regard, because by saying that Jesus is real, you're also saying every other god isn't real.  You're also working to both ends simultaneously.
I didn't realize that the reason the topic of God weighed so heavily on my mind, was because God was pressing the issue.
This is a dangerous statement, saying that god compelled you to do something.  Is that really a good lead-off for you?

The rest of point five is useless waffle. Still no defense of the points being made.
6. Does God exist? Unlike any other revelation of God, Jesus Christ is the clearest, most specific picture of God revealing himself to us.
So the question of whether or not god exists is evidence for if god exists or not.  That level of mental gymnastics made me dizzy, so lets sit down for a moment.
Why Jesus?  Look throughout the major world religions and you'll find that Buddha, Muhammad, Confucius and Moses all identified themselves as teachers or prophets.
Buddha specifically told people he wasn't a god.  The Analects of Confucius are filled with anecdotes about not making baseless claims, and respecting your lack of knowledge.  Atheist teachers, in a way.
None of them ever claimed to be equal to God.
No, but lots of people have claimed it.  Jim Jones, David Koresh, Kim Jong-Un, the queen of England.  All claim divine lineage.
Surprisingly, Jesus did. That is what sets Jesus apart from all the others. He said God exists and you're looking at him.
Fine.  I say god exists, and he's writing this blog post so you'll understand he doesn't actually exist.  Do you see how ineffectual your argument is?
Looking at all these facts, one can conclude that a loving God does exist and can be known in an intimate, personal way.
No.  I can simply apply your argument to literally any other person because yours is an argument from authority fallacy.  Kim Jong-un claims to be born of god, literally.  Are you going to believe him just because he says it?

I hope my points have been clear.
As always, this is Rev. J.R., signing off.

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