Logical arguments and even miracles don't really prove anything

Dizerner

Well-known member
I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. If there is a God, that God should know exactly what would change my mind and should be capable of doing it, and the fact that this hasn’t happened means that either that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t want me to know he exists… yet. Not my problem. — Matt Dillahunty

Strangely enough as a convinced theist I have to partially agree with Matt here in that the means and method of persuasion and belief are unknown to us, to anything less than the Divine, and I don't think either side of this debate should feel arguments are enough to persuade. Strangely enough, though, Matt doesn't seem to abide by what he says here, and runs one of many similar Atheist shows that seem to just be a couple of skeptics sitting there, hands folded, waiting for a caller to "demonstrate" God to them, when Matt already said he doesn't even know what he's looking for. Since the only thing Matt is really looking for is completely undefined by him, I assume the show is just for entertainment.

I use to hear more often "just show me a miracle, that's all I ask," and an atheist Youtuber PineCreek is famously known for asking Christians to pray for matches to combust on stream, while another atheist has asked Christian debaters to boldly drink antifreeze on stage. But even if a miracle occurred the only thing it would really prove is that a current understanding of naturalism is insufficient to explain reality, it really doesn't do more than that. It could be aliens, it could be the matrix, it could all be a dream, it could be advanced scientific techniques, it could be unknown physical laws, it could be some deceiving supernatural entity, it could anything. And even Christians should agree miracles are insufficient in and of themselves alone, because Scripture warns us of Satan deceiving in the end times through some kind of miracles, and that Pharaoh's magicians were able to do magic as well as Moses.

So then, are we at an impasse where believers/non-believers are across each other in an impossible divide that can never be crossed by any known method, and all debate about it is just a pointless exercise in futility that often just ends in bad feelings?

I think my answer is... partly. I think there is something believers can do besides arguing or calling down fire from heaven, and that is to continue to pray for and show the love of God to those they think don't "see the light" and encourage anyone who feels some desire for something more in their life or some kind of dissatisfaction, by exhorting them that it could very well be God doing something in their motivations.

I am heartbroken by the uncaring attitude of some Christians I see interacting here, we are suppose to be the salt and light and turning the other cheek, blessing when we are cursed, but I know I've failed that standard many times too. People who don't believe in Christ are not the ones we should be expecting a standard from, and sometimes they are more polite than Christians. I apologize on behalf of people that stand for Christ.

Anyone reading this, know that I love you, I care about your spiritual state, and I've prayed you come to find the truth. If you feel something prompting you to find more about God, keep seeking! And feel free to send me a message on here anytime.

[NOTE: This is a re-post of a thread that was deleted, I presume for people arguing on it, I hope it is permitted.]
 

Nouveau

Well-known member
Logical arguments and verified miracles may not alone be enough to convince, but they could definitely tip the scales towards making theism at least seem a little bit credible. As it stands, their absence is certainly not an impasse, but leaves atheism as the only reasonable option, IMO.

I appreciate your speaking out against the poor behaviour of so many so-called Christians here. For whatever reason, CARM has always been a magnet for the neuro-atypical on the theistic side, and we should always try to remember that these people are not a representative sample of Christians in general.
 

Whatsisface

Well-known member
I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. If there is a God, that God should know exactly what would change my mind and should be capable of doing it, and the fact that this hasn’t happened means that either that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t want me to know he exists… yet. Not my problem. — Matt Dillahunty

Strangely enough as a convinced theist I have to partially agree with Matt here in that the means and method of persuasion and belief are unknown to us, to anything less than the Divine, and I don't think either side of this debate should feel arguments are enough to persuade. Strangely enough, though, Matt doesn't seem to abide by what he says here, and runs one of many similar Atheist shows that seem to just be a couple of skeptics sitting there, hands folded, waiting for a caller to "demonstrate" God to them, when Matt already said he doesn't even know what he's looking for. Since the only thing Matt is really looking for is completely undefined by him, I assume the show is just for entertainment.

I use to hear more often "just show me a miracle, that's all I ask," and an atheist Youtuber PineCreek is famously known for asking Christians to pray for matches to combust on stream, while another atheist has asked Christian debaters to boldly drink antifreeze on stage. But even if a miracle occurred the only thing it would really prove is that a current understanding of naturalism is insufficient to explain reality, it really doesn't do more than that. It could be aliens, it could be the matrix, it could all be a dream, it could be advanced scientific techniques, it could be unknown physical laws, it could be some deceiving supernatural entity, it could anything. And even Christians should agree miracles are insufficient in and of themselves alone, because Scripture warns us of Satan deceiving in the end times through some kind of miracles, and that Pharaoh's magicians were able to do magic as well as Moses.
When I'm asked this question I answer with, if something was prayed for that we know is impossible and it happened. So a miracle I suppose, the well known example being a lost limb growing back. If you prayed for all disease to stop overnight and it did, that would really get my attention. It would be something that would really count. I'm not trying to be offensive in reply to your respectful post, but I would guess that most Christians in their hearts know that this sort of thing would never happen hence the often used, you shouldn't put the Lord to the test.
So then, are we at an impasse where believers/non-believers are across each other in an impossible divide that can never be crossed by any known method, and all debate about it is just a pointless exercise in futility that often just ends in bad feelings?
Yes this often happens. I think the bad feelings often happen when the "other side" is seen as not being reasonable.

An interesting point is, the owner of this site is a well know proponent of the Transcendental Argument for God, TAG for short. He thinks it proves God but admits that he knows no one who came to Christ because of it
I think my answer is... partly. I think there is something believers can do besides arguing or calling down fire from heaven, and that is to continue to pray for and show the love of God to those they think don't "see the light" and encourage anyone who feels some desire for something more in their life or some kind of dissatisfaction, by exhorting them that it could very well be God doing something in their motivations.

I am heartbroken by the uncaring attitude of some Christians I see interacting here, we are suppose to be the salt and light and turning the other cheek, blessing when we are cursed, but I know I've failed that standard many times too. People who don't believe in Christ are not the ones we should be expecting a standard from, and sometimes they are more polite than Christians. I apologize on behalf of people that stand for Christ.

Anyone reading this, know that I love you, I care about your spiritual state, and I've prayed you come to find the truth. If you feel something prompting you to find more about God, keep seeking! And feel free to send me a message on here anytime.

[NOTE: This is a re-post of a thread that was deleted, I presume for people arguing on it, I hope it is permitted.]
Thank you for saying this. It's full of reason and reasonableness.

It makes a real refreshing change to the deliberate antagonism that often goes on here.
 

bigthinker

Well-known member
I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. If there is a God, that God should know exactly what would change my mind and should be capable of doing it, and the fact that this hasn’t happened means that either that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t want me to know he exists… yet. Not my problem. — Matt Dillahunty

Strangely enough as a convinced theist I have to partially agree with Matt here in that the means and method of persuasion and belief are unknown to us, to anything less than the Divine, and I don't think either side of this debate should feel arguments are enough to persuade. Strangely enough, though, Matt doesn't seem to abide by what he says here, and runs one of many similar Atheist shows that seem to just be a couple of skeptics sitting there, hands folded, waiting for a caller to "demonstrate" God to them, when Matt already said he doesn't even know what he's looking for. Since the only thing Matt is really looking for is completely undefined by him, I assume the show is just for entertainment.

I use to hear more often "just show me a miracle, that's all I ask," and an atheist Youtuber PineCreek is famously known for asking Christians to pray for matches to combust on stream, while another atheist has asked Christian debaters to boldly drink antifreeze on stage. But even if a miracle occurred the only thing it would really prove is that a current understanding of naturalism is insufficient to explain reality, it really doesn't do more than that. It could be aliens, it could be the matrix, it could all be a dream, it could be advanced scientific techniques, it could be unknown physical laws, it could be some deceiving supernatural entity, it could anything. And even Christians should agree miracles are insufficient in and of themselves alone, because Scripture warns us of Satan deceiving in the end times through some kind of miracles, and that Pharaoh's magicians were able to do magic as well as Moses.

So then, are we at an impasse where believers/non-believers are across each other in an impossible divide that can never be crossed by any known method, and all debate about it is just a pointless exercise in futility that often just ends in bad feelings?

I think my answer is... partly. I think there is something believers can do besides arguing or calling down fire from heaven, and that is to continue to pray for and show the love of God to those they think don't "see the light" and encourage anyone who feels some desire for something more in their life or some kind of dissatisfaction, by exhorting them that it could very well be God doing something in their motivations.

I am heartbroken by the uncaring attitude of some Christians I see interacting here, we are suppose to be the salt and light and turning the other cheek, blessing when we are cursed, but I know I've failed that standard many times too. People who don't believe in Christ are not the ones we should be expecting a standard from, and sometimes they are more polite than Christians. I apologize on behalf of people that stand for Christ.

Anyone reading this, know that I love you, I care about your spiritual state, and I've prayed you come to find the truth. If you feel something prompting you to find more about God, keep seeking! And feel free to send me a message on here anytime.

[NOTE: This is a re-post of a thread that was deleted, I presume for people arguing on it, I hope it is permitted.]
What if the truth is not what you think it is?
 

Algor

Well-known member
I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. If there is a God, that God should know exactly what would change my mind and should be capable of doing it, and the fact that this hasn’t happened means that either that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t want me to know he exists… yet. Not my problem. — Matt Dillahunty

Strangely enough as a convinced theist I have to partially agree with Matt here in that the means and method of persuasion and belief are unknown to us, to anything less than the Divine, and I don't think either side of this debate should feel arguments are enough to persuade. Strangely enough, though, Matt doesn't seem to abide by what he says here, and runs one of many similar Atheist shows that seem to just be a couple of skeptics sitting there, hands folded, waiting for a caller to "demonstrate" God to them, when Matt already said he doesn't even know what he's looking for. Since the only thing Matt is really looking for is completely undefined by him, I assume the show is just for entertainment.

I use to hear more often "just show me a miracle, that's all I ask," and an atheist Youtuber PineCreek is famously known for asking Christians to pray for matches to combust on stream, while another atheist has asked Christian debaters to boldly drink antifreeze on stage. But even if a miracle occurred the only thing it would really prove is that a current understanding of naturalism is insufficient to explain reality, it really doesn't do more than that. It could be aliens, it could be the matrix, it could all be a dream, it could be advanced scientific techniques, it could be unknown physical laws, it could be some deceiving supernatural entity, it could anything. And even Christians should agree miracles are insufficient in and of themselves alone, because Scripture warns us of Satan deceiving in the end times through some kind of miracles, and that Pharaoh's magicians were able to do magic as well as Moses.

So then, are we at an impasse where believers/non-believers are across each other in an impossible divide that can never be crossed by any known method, and all debate about it is just a pointless exercise in futility that often just ends in bad feelings?

I think my answer is... partly. I think there is something believers can do besides arguing or calling down fire from heaven, and that is to continue to pray for and show the love of God to those they think don't "see the light" and encourage anyone who feels some desire for something more in their life or some kind of dissatisfaction, by exhorting them that it could very well be God doing something in their motivations.

I am heartbroken by the uncaring attitude of some Christians I see interacting here, we are suppose to be the salt and light and turning the other cheek, blessing when we are cursed, but I know I've failed that standard many times too. People who don't believe in Christ are not the ones we should be expecting a standard from, and sometimes they are more polite than Christians. I apologize on behalf of people that stand for Christ.

Anyone reading this, know that I love you, I care about your spiritual state, and I've prayed you come to find the truth. If you feel something prompting you to find more about God, keep seeking! And feel free to send me a message on here anytime.

[NOTE: This is a re-post of a thread that was deleted, I presume for people arguing on it, I hope it is permitted.]
I think often what changes peoples minds is a realization that the armamentarium of argument and rationalization thay have is not the best approach to the questions they need answered.
 

Electric Skeptic

Well-known member
I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. If there is a God, that God should know exactly what would change my mind and should be capable of doing it, and the fact that this hasn’t happened means that either that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t want me to know he exists… yet. Not my problem. — Matt Dillahunty

Strangely enough as a convinced theist I have to partially agree with Matt here in that the means and method of persuasion and belief are unknown to us, to anything less than the Divine, and I don't think either side of this debate should feel arguments are enough to persuade. Strangely enough, though, Matt doesn't seem to abide by what he says here, and runs one of many similar Atheist shows that seem to just be a couple of skeptics sitting there, hands folded, waiting for a caller to "demonstrate" God to them, when Matt already said he doesn't even know what he's looking for. Since the only thing Matt is really looking for is completely undefined by him, I assume the show is just for entertainment.
I disagree here. Why does the fact that what would change Matt's mind is unknown to him preclude it from appearing on his show?
I use to hear more often "just show me a miracle, that's all I ask," and an atheist Youtuber PineCreek is famously known for asking Christians to pray for matches to combust on stream, while another atheist has asked Christian debaters to boldly drink antifreeze on stage. But even if a miracle occurred the only thing it would really prove is that a current understanding of naturalism is insufficient to explain reality, it really doesn't do more than that. It could be aliens, it could be the matrix, it could all be a dream, it could be advanced scientific techniques, it could be unknown physical laws, it could be some deceiving supernatural entity, it could anything. And even Christians should agree miracles are insufficient in and of themselves alone, because Scripture warns us of Satan deceiving in the end times through some kind of miracles, and that Pharaoh's magicians were able to do magic as well as Moses.

So then, are we at an impasse where believers/non-believers are across each other in an impossible divide that can never be crossed by any known method, and all debate about it is just a pointless exercise in futility that often just ends in bad feelings?

I think my answer is... partly. I think there is something believers can do besides arguing or calling down fire from heaven, and that is to continue to pray for and show the love of God to those they think don't "see the light" and encourage anyone who feels some desire for something more in their life or some kind of dissatisfaction, by exhorting them that it could very well be God doing something in their motivations.

I am heartbroken by the uncaring attitude of some Christians I see interacting here, we are suppose to be the salt and light and turning the other cheek, blessing when we are cursed, but I know I've failed that standard many times too. People who don't believe in Christ are not the ones we should be expecting a standard from, and sometimes they are more polite than Christians. I apologize on behalf of people that stand for Christ.

Anyone reading this, know that I love you, I care about your spiritual state, and I've prayed you come to find the truth. If you feel something prompting you to find more about God, keep seeking! And feel free to send me a message on here anytime.

[NOTE: This is a re-post of a thread that was deleted, I presume for people arguing on it, I hope it is permitted.]
When atheists say, more or less, 'prove God exists', they are speaking carelessly. What they really mean (IMO) is 'provide me sufficient evidence that belief in God seems warranted'. I can't think of anything that would prove God exists, but I can think of any number of things that would provide me sufficient evidence that belief in God seems warranted. A few examples:
- prayer actually working. Statistically, it doesn't.
- a person regrowing a limb.
- Christians (who, supposedly, have the most powerful being in the universe in their corner) being significantly better in life than non Christians (by 'better in life' I mean excelling in some measurable way. For example, if Christians were measurably healthier than non-Christians, or lived longer, or were happier, or had fewer divorces, or anything similar). The sad truth is that these people who have the most powerful being in the universe in their corner live lives that are otherwise indistinguishable from those of atheists (and Muslims, and Hindus, etc.).
- Christianity being a coherent entity. Christians have argued about what is 'true' Christianity for millenia and show no signs of even slowing down. Yet they all claim that they have it correct, they have the actual Spirit, that God tells them that they are right. Since they all can't be right, it's not much of a leap to think that there's no reason to think that any of them are right.
- The bible being coherent. Being written over hundreds of years by we don't know how many people in however many different styles, the bible isn't a coherent narrative. It's contradictory, false to fact in any number of places, misleading and famously open to any number of interpretations. This is supposedly God's 'textbook' to life, yet he couldn't even make it clear? It reads like a jumble of myths put down by a bunch of people over centuries, often cribbed from and or copied from other mythologies, and there's nothing to distinguish it from any number of other religious texts like the Bhagavad Gita, or the Book of Mormon. If it actually stood out from the others in some discernable way, that would be great evidence.

Of course, I could go on. But the most significant thing to note is that Christians and Christianity aren't different in any discernable way from Muslims and Islam, Hindus and their texts, and so forth. All around the world, devotees are absolutely certain that their religious beliefs are correct and that everybody else's are wrong. They all make the same claims, all provide the same evidence and all condemn everyone else as enthusiastically. The fact that none of them can provide anything that distinguishes them from the other myriad 'fake' religions is the best evidence that they're all fake.
 

docphin5

Well-known member
I disagree here. Why does the fact that what would change Matt's mind is unknown to him preclude it from appearing on his show?

When atheists say, more or less, 'prove God exists', they are speaking carelessly. What they really mean (IMO) is 'provide me sufficient evidence that belief in God seems warranted'. I can't think of anything that would prove God exists, but I can think of any number of things that would provide me sufficient evidence that belief in God seems warranted. A few examples:
- prayer actually working. Statistically, it doesn't.
- a person regrowing a limb.
- Christians (who, supposedly, have the most powerful being in the universe in their corner) being significantly better in life than non Christians (by 'better in life' I mean excelling in some measurable way. For example, if Christians were measurably healthier than non-Christians, or lived longer, or were happier, or had fewer divorces, or anything similar). The sad truth is that these people who have the most powerful being in the universe in their corner live lives that are otherwise indistinguishable from those of atheists (and Muslims, and Hindus, etc.).
- Christianity being a coherent entity. Christians have argued about what is 'true' Christianity for millenia and show no signs of even slowing down. Yet they all claim that they have it correct, they have the actual Spirit, that God tells them that they are right. Since they all can't be right, it's not much of a leap to think that there's no reason to think that any of them are right.
- The bible being coherent. Being written over hundreds of years by we don't know how many people in however many different styles, the bible isn't a coherent narrative. It's contradictory, false to fact in any number of places, misleading and famously open to any number of interpretations. This is supposedly God's 'textbook' to life, yet he couldn't even make it clear? It reads like a jumble of myths put down by a bunch of people over centuries, often cribbed from and or copied from other mythologies, and there's nothing to distinguish it from any number of other religious texts like the Bhagavad Gita, or the Book of Mormon. If it actually stood out from the others in some discernable way, that would be great evidence.

Of course, I could go on. But the most significant thing to note is that Christians and Christianity aren't different in any discernable way from Muslims and Islam, Hindus and their texts, and so forth. All around the world, devotees are absolutely certain that their religious beliefs are correct and that everybody else's are wrong. They all make the same claims, all provide the same evidence and all condemn everyone else as enthusiastically. The fact that none of them can provide anything that distinguishes them from the other myriad 'fake' religions is the best evidence that they're all fake.
Everything you said is true. What all this ^^^^^ suggests is Prisca theologia. Look it up on Wikipedia.

Prisca theologia ("ancient theology") is the doctrine that asserts that a single, true theology exists, which threads through all religions, and which was anciently given by God to man.

Christianity, like other religions, e.g., Judaism, and Greek religions, borrowed ideas (i.e., underlying truths) from other religions (e.g., Biblical Noah’s flood from Chaldean Epic of Gilgamesh) and rewrote them into a new scriptural narrative. The people who originally understood the underlying truths and wrote them were a minority. The later people who literalize the myths and claim their religion is unique and that everyone else is going to hell are the misled. There happens to be more of them than the former group so they do a lot of harm to the underlying truth.

IOW, the few in every generation who perceive the better meaning of scripture are the ones whom God is revealing himself. All this other bickering and arguing whose religion is better is from those who don’t know what any of it actually meant to those who wrote it. It is why I spend so much time reading the best from each religion because everything else is just noise.

Go read Plutarch, “Isis and Osiris”, who as a priest for Apollo in the first century expounds on the Greek/Egyptian meaning of the myths and complains about the rabble who literalize the Myths. The point is that this ^^^^^^ has been going on since humans began writing scripture. The trick is to tune out the noise and cling to the good.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” (Phillippians 4:8)
 
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Dizerner

Well-known member
I disagree here. Why does the fact that what would change Matt's mind is unknown to him preclude it from appearing on his show?

I don't think my argument was that something on Matt's show could not do something beyond his understanding and be what he was demanding, but rather that his method of looking for it seems lazy and half-haphazard. How can you look for something you can't define and don't know what it is? What if I said to you, "I don't know what would make me an atheist, but go ahead and try," then simply declared all of your responses insufficient. Do you think I'm clear-headed and sincere? Since I don't know what would make me believe X I'm just randomly shooting in the dark.

I would reiterate again that miracles, althoughly commonly cited as a "good start" to believe in God, don't logically work out to prove anything. This illustrates people, in fact, do not operate or work by logic. They want to think of themselves as "logical" as a method of self-affirmation and false confidence, but they don't strictly want to see where logic actually leads.

Hear Richard Dawkins (overall a very shallow thinker and poor philosopher) make a decent point here:

 

Tiburon

Well-known member
I don't think my argument was that something on Matt's show could not do something beyond his understanding and be what he was demanding, but rather that his method of looking for it seems lazy and half-haphazard. How can you look for something you can't define and don't know what it is? What if I said to you, "I don't know what would make me an atheist, but go ahead and try," then simply declared all of your responses insufficient. Do you think I'm clear-headed and sincere? Since I don't know what would make me believe X I'm just randomly shooting in the dark.

I would reiterate again that miracles, althoughly commonly cited as a "good start" to believe in God, don't logically work out to prove anything. This illustrates people, in fact, do not operate or work by logic. They want to think of themselves as "logical" as a method of self-affirmation and false confidence, but they don't strictly want to see where logic actually leads.

Hear Richard Dawkins (overall a very shallow thinker and poor philosopher) make a decent point here:

But if you can't conceive of what would convince you then how can you go looking for it? Those who call in think they have something that would convince.
Matt doesn't just declared all of the responses insufficient out of hand. He explains why he thinks they are insufficient.
You may not agree with his reasons. But in that case you have to show why he is wrong.
 

Dizerner

Well-known member
But if you can't conceive of what would convince you then how can you go looking for it? Those who call in think they have something that would convince.
Matt doesn't just declared all of the responses insufficient out of hand. He explains why he thinks they are insufficient.
You may not agree with his reasons. But in that case you have to show why he is wrong.

If you don't know what you are looking for, there is no logical way you can describe why something doesn't meet an unknown standard.

It's an exercise in inconsistency.

Your post doesn't meet my unknown standard for what would meet my criteria I deem as "more logical" to convince me of your point.

Edit mocking comment
 
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Whateverman

Well-known member
If you don't know what you are looking for, there is no logical way you can describe why something doesn't meet an unknown standard.
I think this incorrectly blends two concepts together: knowing what you're looking for, and knowing what standards that thing must adhere to.

For example, as an atheist, I don't know what would consist of proof of God's existence - but I do know what it could NOT consist of. Proof of God's existence can't be a haiku; it can't be seemingly meaningless jumble of Legos; it can't be a book or a question I'm asked or any number of things.

I know what proof of God's existence can't be...
 

bigthinker

Well-known member
If you don't know what you are looking for, there is no logical way you can describe why something doesn't meet an unknown standard.

It's an exercise in inconsistency.

Your post doesn't meet my unknown standard for what would meet my criteria I deem as "more logical" to convince me of your point.

Maybe call in next week?
Is Matt really "looking"?
He has said that God knows what would convince him so whether or not Matt knows what that would be is irrelevant.

Everything you said is true. What all this ^^^^^ suggests is Prisca theologia. Look it up on Wikipedia.

Prisca theologia ("ancient theology") is the doctrine that asserts that a single, true theology exists, which threads through all religions, and which was anciently given by God to man.

Christianity, like other religions, e.g., Judaism, and Greek religions, borrowed ideas (i.e., underlying truths) from other religions (e.g., Biblical Noah’s flood from Chaldean Epic of Gilgamesh) and rewrote them into a new scriptural narrative. The people who originally understood the underlying truths and wrote them were a minority. The later people who literalize the myths and claim their religion is unique and that everyone else is going to hell are the misled. There happens to be more of them than the former group so they do a lot of harm to the underlying truth.

IOW, the few in every generation who perceive the better meaning of scripture are the ones whom God is revealing himself. All this other bickering and arguing whose religion is better is from those who don’t know what any of it actually meant to those who wrote it. It is why I spend so much time reading the best from each religion because everything else is just noise.

Go read Plutarch, “Isis and Osiris”, who as a priest for Apollo in the first century expounds on the Greek/Egyptian meaning of the myths and complains about the rabble who literalize the Myths. The point is that this ^^^^^^ has been going on since humans began writing scripture. The trick is to tune out the noise and cling to the good.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” (Phillippians 4:8)
What atheist literature have you read?
 

Tiburon

Well-known member
If you don't know what you are looking for, there is no logical way you can describe why something doesn't meet an unknown standard.

It's an exercise in inconsistency.

Your post doesn't meet my unknown standard for what would meet my criteria I deem as "more logical" to convince me of your point.

Maybe call in next week?
I think the standard would be known. For example the evidence would have to be empirical.
The unknown part would be what form it would take and how it would prove God.
 

Dizerner

Well-known member
I think the standard would be known. For example the evidence would have to be empirical.
The unknown part would be what form it would take and how it would prove God.

I'm using Matt's own words here, "I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know."

Not to mention, if you don't know, how could you know whether you have to know or not?

If I take a logically inconsistent position, whenever I'm pinned down to a point I can simply use several methods to deflect, accuse, misdirect or obfuscate, like pinning jello to a wall.

If I invite you to prove something that I define on my own terms in a way that is inconsistent, that is acting like I'm offering you to do something that is actually logically impossible.
 

Tiburon

Well-known member
I'm using Matt's own words here, "I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know."

Not to mention, if you don't know, how could you know whether you have to know or not?

If I take a logically inconsistent position, whenever I'm pinned down to a point I can simply use several methods to deflect, accuse, misdirect or obfuscate, like pinning jello to a wall.

If I invite you to prove something that I define on my own terms in a way that is inconsistent, that is acting like I'm offering you to do something that is actually logically impossible.

Matt is saying that God would know what would change his mind. So Matt doesn't need to or have to know what that something is beforehand.
However once it's presented to him he will recognise it as proof of God.
 

Tiburon

Well-known member
To this fellow Matt I'd say tough. . God will judge you on how much evidence HE DEEMS necessary to have had to persuade and if he wants to claim it wasn't enough....doesn't matter. IT WILL NOT STAND. When God says people will be without excuse that's exactly what he means. Rom 1:20 One could also read, Rev 21:8 about the unbelieving.


And just because one rejects your arguments Dizermer and says it wasn't enough doesn't mean God agrees with them.

So you see what they're doing? They're being arrogant to demand God to even go against his principals. It's already been revealed that when Satan told Jesus to jump off a temple and God would protect you that it's only in the case of an accident....not willingly doing something destructive.


But you're making it seem that just because they claim there wasn't sufficient proof provided that God agrees that's true. He doesn't or we could say he might not.

Then Jesus began to denounce the towns in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No, you will go down to Hades. For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.” Matt 11:20



I get what you're saying and to a measure agree with you. But.....you still seem to leave no place where God would say through you what Paul stated to some people,

"Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: “We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles." Acts 13:46

But the Jewish leaders incited the God-fearing women of high standing and the leading men of the city. They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their region. So they shook the dust off their feet as a warning to them and went to Iconium. Acts 13:50


Surely you must agree those people would have claimed God didn't provide sufficient proof? Did God agree with them? I'd say NO.
It's not whether God DEEMS that to be enough proof. God should surely be able to see that an individual is being honest in their evaluation of that evidence and sincere in the position they have taken as a result. If he cannot they he isn't much of a God.
 

Furion

Well-known member
I often get asked, what would change your mind? I don’t know. I don’t have to know. If there is a God, that God should know exactly what would change my mind and should be capable of doing it, and the fact that this hasn’t happened means that either that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t want me to know he exists… yet. Not my problem. — Matt Dillahunty

"Not my problem"

Christ had much to say to those who refuse to believe Him. Those who refuse to come into the light are warned. He didn't qualify it, it's all men, it is me and you.

No Matt, it is your problem.

You are no different than the men of His day or me, and He would speak to you the same. So if you want answers you will need to read the scriptures for yourself, have the Spirit communicate to you personally.

What is not my problem is your response to the Spirit. Me not relating this to you would be spiritually criminal, you have encountered the Spirit of God. You can't count the cost while ignorant, and the gospel is not just words, it is backed by power. The Spirit of God. Men find it inconceivable they've encountered God. To that I say how else would God communicate to a human but through words they can understand?




To the OP, while I appreciate your efforts in raising the dialogue here, your subject matter runs smack into the same wall as every other believer, God is serious when He says He didn't come to condemn but to save. And equally serious when He says if you don't 'change your mind' and turn to Him you will remain condemned and will perish. Every atheist here knows full well the ultimatums God places before us. I welcome any man to come here and lay it on in full and straight, while being real nice about it.
 

Algor

Well-known member
It's not whether God DEEMS that to be enough proof. God should surely be able to see that an individual is being honest in their evaluation of that evidence and sincere in the position they have taken as a result. If he cannot they he isn't much of a God.
TBF, a person's honesty and sincerity in their non-belief don't seem to matter much doctrinally, to many Christians, as to where a person ends up, so why should it matter as to what evidence would be appropriate? (added in edit: it looks like Furion and I are saying the same thing but from opposite sides of the fence. )

I'd add that the formation of world views often involves self-deception in my opinion, and people have honestly and sincerely done terrible things in the name of some greater good (theist or not) so maybe that isn't as unfair as it sounds. I mean, we all like to think we are honest and sincere, but nobody is, completely. If you have a deity that sees and understands everything about you, it would be better positioned to evaluate your honesty and sincerity than you.

I have never understood why some atheists want to characterize and personally evaluate God and his putative actions. If God's fundamental nature is doctrinally inaccessible to reason, then to me, an atheist should shrug his or her shoulders and move on. I mean, everybody has personal reasons for looking at things their own way, but from the POV of rationally identifying the logical and evidential issues, what's the point?
 
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Ontos

Active member
"Logical arguments and even miracles don't really prove anything"

They actually do, but then again; proof is different than persuasion.
 

Rockson

Active member
It's not whether God DEEMS that to be enough proof. God should surely be able to see that an individual is being honest in their evaluation of that evidence and sincere in the position they have taken as a result. If he cannot they he isn't much of a God.
Of course God knows if they're being honest but God knows that too and he doesn't just take what they say among men.....that they need more proof. One can even claim they're making an honest evaluation and maybe are even deceiving themselves but if their same reasoning is compared to other subjects or themes sometimes their assessments are totally biased....and really not honest regardless of how much they claim they are.

e.g. One could throw up in the air the thousand parts of an automobile and nobody would believe those part could all fall to the ground all put together and in working order. No body could believe that. And yet people can look at creation and clam they can't believe God exists when they see intelligent design all around them. Their claim of not being convinced will not be allowed. Rom 1:20
 
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