John Loftus has posted yet another argument trying to show that God cannot be omnipotent and good. My comments are going to be bolded. Let's see where he goes off the rails this time.
Why is it that believers say God can do anything until I suggest a scenario that they don't like? This is yet another reason why I think Christians are delusional. It's crystal clear that what they think God can do depends on whether a given scenario is something that they like or not. It's much like how they deal with unanswered prayer. They count the hits and discount the misses. And it's much like giving God the credit for the good that happens in life and blaming human beings (or the devil) for everything else. I don't get it. Is God omnipotent or not? Let me give just one scenario concerning earthquakes which cause massive amounts of suffering.
Unfortunately, he has a point about Americanized Christian culture. Fortunately, the Bible clearly does not allow this viewpoint, although many Christians think this way.
Several earthquakes have caused a great amount of carnage in recent years, including the one in the Indian Ocean in 2004 that caused a tsunami which killed over a quarter million people, countless numbers of animals, and devastated the environment. There have been earthquakes in Haiti last year, and in Pakistan and New Zealand this year already. We know that in the future there will be massive earthquakes in Los Angeles, along the San Andreas fault line, and also in Istanbul.
All true. I live in California. The San Andreas Faults is really close to me. I'm well-aware of it.
Now, could God have averted the ones in the past and continue doing so in the future? Yes or no? No fudging. No obfuscation. No red herrings. No sidestepping the question. No delusional dances. No gerrymandering around the question. Yes or no? I take it the answer will be a resounding yes. "Yes, praise Jesus, he can do this!"
Yes, God can and does do that. That is why I continue to live.
Now let's also agree that the more power a person has then the more he is morally obliged to help avert suffering.
If all it takes is a snap of one's fingers, or a signature on a piece of paper, to avert suffering then that person has a greater moral obligation to help avert suffering than a person who must die in the process of doing so. Agree?
If a superman came upon a gang of thugs in Darfar who were pillaging a town, wantonly killing children, and repeatedly raping women, then does he have more of a moral obligation to help these innocents than a mere mortal who does not have the power to stop them and will surely die in the process? Again, Yes or no? No fudging. No obfuscation. No red herrings. No sidestepping the question. No delusional dances. No gerrymandering around the question. Yes or no? I take it the answer to this question will also be a resounding yes. "Yes, praise Jesus, God has more of a moral obligation than others to avert suffering because he has more power to do so!"
No. Equating Superman to God is really not looking at it correctly. The fictional Superman is just as valuable as any other human being and is obligated but because of the Moral standard God has established. God is not bound by the same standard.and we belong to Him. Superman belongs to the world. Superman serves the world. The world is supposed to serve God.
Put two and two together and there you have the problem. It's a serious one if you wish to continue believing in your delusion, and delusion it is. Why is it that an omnipotent God could not do a perpetual miracle by stopping plate tectonics from ever moving, especially if all it takes is a snap of his omnipotent "fingers"? Is he omnipotent, or not?
Loftus is putting two and two together and coming up with five. He asks "Why is it that an omnipotent God could not do a perpetual miracle by stopping plate tectonics from ever moving?" Simple. Without plate tectonics we are all dead. Look at the science from Reason to Believe website.
How Could A Good God Allow Earthquakes?
Another Benefit for Life in Earthquakes
God has a reason for everything he does and does not do. Claiming to know better is one of the best examples of stupidity ever thought by the minds of men.
Believers have only one reasonable way to escape the clear implications of this serious problem for faith in what I call the omniscience escape clause: "My ways are not your ways," we read in Isaiah. "How do we know what an omniscient God might do?" an apologist chimes in with an implied, "We can't." The answer is obvious. We must be able to understand enough of God's ways to know that his ways are good and that he knows what he's doing. It's that simple. If God does not act as a loving person would do then all we can reasonably conclude is that God is not acting like a loving person would do. And if God does not respond in discernible loving ways when tragic events take place then it looks entirely as if tragic events happen randomly without his ever-watchful eye.
Loftus misses another option: Maybe we don't know what Love is. If you don't know what love is, how do you discern what loving is. How do you not know that God has actually don e what was the absolute best for us all, although it doesn't seem like it to us. This is where trust comes in. We trust God and don't rely just on what we think because what we think will change. That doesn't mean don't think, but look at the world the way God has given it to us to look at it.
So I put it to believers. If God is omnipotent then why does he not care? He could avert all earthquakes with a perpetual miracle quite easily. Why doesn't he do it? No fudging. No obfuscation. No red herrings. No sidestepping the question. No delusional dances. No gerrymandering around the question. Why doesn't he do it?
Who said God doesn't care? While God could have chosen to make this world in a way that earthquakes were not needed, He didn't. This is what God decided to do and how He decided to do it. Do we know why? No. Do we need to know why? No. Can we ask God? Yes. Will He answer? When He is ready for us to know we will know but the signs and evidence point to earthquakes being needed fro the life we have on earth..
Then when you've come up with your answers look at them. Think about them. Ask yourself if these answers make sense apart from what you read in an ancient superstitious set of texts written by pre-scientific agency detectors. Do they really make sense give the omnipotence of God?
Unfortunately, many Christians don't think about these issues. I have thought about this a lot and the conclusion I've come to is that the Bible is right. Even it means everyone of us is wrong, God is right.
I have no hopes that what I've just written can shake you from your delusion, because you are deluded. Doubt is the adult attitude. Grow up.
Maybe John Lofuts should really take stock and see where the delusion is.
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do. - James 1:5-8
Debunking Christianity: Is God Omnipotent or Not?