Friday, October 14, 2011

FacePalm of th Day #134 - Responding to Johnny P World and does God have Free Will? Part 3

Johnny P continued his response to mine. Even though I waited for a whole day, he still responded to part 1 and left a short one on part 2.  Again my quotes from him will be red italicized and his words will be black and my responses will be red.

I would wait. I haven't finished yet. I am a busy man.

Knock yourself out.  I'm ready.

"As far as we can tell, life as we know it is impossible without plate tectonics. "

So do you admit God in his omnipotence is U#nalbe [assume he meant "unable"] to produce a life-sustaining universe without plate tectonics

No. I'm saying that God in his omnipotence, omnibenevolence, and omniscent chose to create a life-sustaining universe that now has plat tectonics.  When the earth was first formed - there was one land mass. One of two things is true. When God first made earth, there was no earthquakes and  it was not part of the prefect design or earthquakes are a consequence of the fall. I don't know but both of these possibilities fit the Christian worldview and does not not conflict with science.

Dinesh D'Souza used this argument. And was torn apart.

By whom? When? Substantiation? 

This, of course, is a situation more plausibly (through power and scope) explained through naturalism. It is NOT better explained by an all-loving God. The only thing you CAN do is all you ever do, appeal to God's omniscience. The classic 'omniscience escape clause' which offers nothing more than a God of the Gaps style of weak appeal. And that's the sum total of your entire defence.

What's the gap? Naturalism can explain how plate techtonics works, but not why. The Christian worldview offers the why that naturalism can only shrug at. I don't have defend the necessity earthquakes beyond the fact that human life is impossible without it. God knows why they are necessary. and just because we don't know doesn't mean that they are not necessary for what God is achieving.

The question YOU need to ask yourself is 'Is this a plausible explanation?'

You've offered no explanation. The Bible's explanation still stand. 

No, it's not.

Says you.  Just your opinion. No substantiation.

Your next section you need to clarify by telling me whether you are a Calvinist or similar.

I did re-read part 2 of  the response. 

"It's more like having already been born in prison and not being able to raise bail. You are sentenced to death. The only way to be free and live is to let Jesus no just pay the price for your release but take your punishment of death as well."

OK, have it your way. If you think that is free will, then you would have most philosophers who ever existed to argue with on that analogy, starting with Hume!

I don't know what you think "Free Will" is. You never  bothered define it. Waiting.

"Which Johnny P again misses that giving our ignorance we don't know what the perfect world even looks like."

Again, you ignore my criticism that you appeal to the omniscience escape clause. Weak.It also doesn't matter one jot what WE know since it logically follows that this is the most perfect world that could feasibly be. DO YOU DENY THIS?

Yes, I do. THIS IS NOT THE BIBLICAL-BASED WORLDVIEW, as I have been saying from the beginning. This world is not perfect this is why God will erase it and start over. You seem to speak about what you do not know a lot.

Since this is the entire point of my post, and you have summarily ignored talking about the substantive points, building straw men and red herrings. Answer the question.

I did. Several times. You keep misrepresenting the Christian worldview and not giving a single reason why you think the Bible is wrong. 

"This is not saying that every single bad thing that has ever happened to you is because of something you personally did. The book of Job deals with that. This world is fallen - bringing us back to Roams 8. I don't know what kind of answer Johnny P is looking for but God more than answers us."

I might be close to ad homming here. Anyone who believes it is right to be punished for the sins of others is an idiot. The bible condones this time and time again. It is why the bible is a torrid book.

Where do you see the Bible condoning anyone (completely innocent) being punished for the sins of others? Do you even know what you are talking about? There only one case of some good person paying for sins of others - Jesus - and he volunteered. Dr. R.C. Sproul was right. No one else is good. When we suffer we deserve it and it's only God's mercy keeping us from annihilation Hell is our default destination because of our constant and continual rebellion against God.

And of course, you suffer the perennial problem of seeking to verify the truth of the bible from... wait for it... the bible.

That is of course true if you can prove the Bible is wrong. Good luck with that. 

The issues here are, again, too protracted to go into.

Nothing stopping  you. I'd even be happy to publish your attempt here. Evey blog can use some humor. 

If you believe unfalteringly, the disparate words of anonymous writers from thousands of years ago, then go for it. It will involve an unhealthy dollop of cognitive dissonance, some primetime indoctrination, some cultural bias, some social conditioning, and a whole heap of presupposition. Arguing from the bible is far more disingenuous than arguing to the bible.

Well given that the Bible, whether you believe it true or not, is the bed rock of traditional Christianity,  you have to at least correctly present what it say and you have dismally failed to prove that you can - undermining any meaningful criticism you attempt to offer. Your main presupposition is that the Christians believe that this world is perfect as it is because God would have brought a different world in its place had there been a better one.  Where is that in the Bible? It's not. I don't have to accept that premise. It's faulty and without it your argument collapses.

""So Johnny P's reasons for rejecting God has to do with erroneous presuppositions about what good is and what love is and what the nature of God is."

I have said nothing of what good or love is, so stop this naive critiquing of things I haven't even said. Tell me, what do I think goodness and love is, based on my comments here?

You said you think that the premise that this is prefect (ie good) world  because God cannot create imperfection is where you are starting. You are arguing that God cannot have free will because he has to do the most loving things possible. In order to make such arguments you are making assertions about what "good" and "love" are. You''re committed.

You see, this seems to be an exercise, for you, in shifting the burden of proof. It is up to YOU to offer FEASIBLE and PROBABLE reasons why there seems to be an inconsistency in the love espoused by God and Christians and the way the world is.

There goes your concept of "love" again. The current state of the planet does not represent the love of God. It's not God perfect plan of perfection, according to the Bible. I'd say go re-read Romans 8, but I already suggested it. Maybe you didn't understand it. 

Answer this, is all the pain and suffering on the world NECESSARY for a perfect world, and if not, why not?

It's necessary for what God has purposed. 

And if it is because of free will, and God set up these parameters and knew what the outcomes were against all other possible outcomes from all other possible worlds, then this still has to be the best one.

 Nope  the Bible does not  say its about human free will.

Otherwise God has not created the most loving, perfect world. IT DOESN'T MATTER ABOUT THE DEFINITIONS OF THESE WORDS!!!! This is a deductive argument. As long as you agree that God is all-loving and perfect, no matter what that means, then the conclusion validly follows that this is the most loving, perfect world.

That's not what Paul wrote. 

Deal with the argument please, and stop poncing around quoting bible verses, talking about red herrings.

Quoting where the Bible is not irrelevant when it answers your question.  Then again maybe it's over your head. Romans 8 deals with this. Why don't you explain why it's wrong. Your preference not to believe it is not good enough reason to reject it.

"I didn't say Johnny P did. I was saying that Johnny P seems to think that the Christian position is Middle Knowledge by default. I know Johnny P is an atheist and does not accept Middle Knowledge. Neither do all Christians. The straw man is his. "

What? Do I? Did I say this? You are constantly trying to put words in my mouth. Get a grip. It's not a bloody straw man!! I said "and given the possibility of Middle Knowledge or any other mechanism for divine foreknowledge"


Sheesh. This is painful.

So you do accept the possibility of  Middle Knowledge? I don't. The bottom line of that above paragraph is that you have misrepresented and ignored the Christian worldview.

Personally, I have seen a Lennox lecture. My friends and I questioned him. He was left wanting. Appealing to authority like that gets you nowhere.

Was it recorded? Where? What did you ask him? Dr Lennox is a great scholar and I'd put way more stock in what he has said than you. At least I can appeal to Lennox. Who appeals to you and your work?

As for yopur bible quote, are you serious? Does that excuse a tsunami? All the foetuses, children, people who had never heard the Gospel, committed and repenting Christians? Dead? And all the animals and ecosystems? Take a long, hard look at what you are saying.

Committed and repenting Christians die in disasters all the time just like unbelievers. There is nothing we, as a group, go through that is uncommon to humanity. How does this help your argument. Evil exists. God will get rid of it when He gets ready to get rid of it. Don't get wiped out with it.

"If God can’t WANT to do anything else, then what the hell do you define as free will?

I didn't say "can't" I said "doesn't" and watch your language."

You entirely missed the subtlety of that point, then. If he can only want what is within his all-loving nature, then he CAN'T WANT to do otherwise. This is synonymous with CAN'T do otherwise. Please take a breath to actually read my words, cogitate on them, and try to critique them intelligently.

I think the disconnect is with the fact that you can't seem to grasp that God doesn't do anything against his nature. Nothing happens that he does not allow to happen. You don't understand what "all-loving nature is". Don't fee bad. No one understands it unless God shows it to them.  I'm praying that God shows you Love - Himself.

"The Bible does not support your premise: "this is a perfect universe" You should agree. That's the point you are making. God did not create imperfectly. It was perfect until Adam and Eve sinned and our sin perpetuates the problems. Your premises fail. "

Have you been paying any attention? See the logical arguments mentioned before. You are simply not addressing the points. Can a perfect God create imperfectly? Answer me that.

 The World was perfect and good until the fall in Genesis 3.  Now the world is not perfect.

You have offered nothing that approaches a logical refutation of any of my points. You have appealed to the bible a bunch of times, to no effect.

Maybe that's because you failed to understand what the Bible is saying. I'm only left to that conclusion because you have failed to respond. 

"It's not a perfect world (see Romans 8 and the rest of the Bible). Therefore Johnny P's conclusions are flawed because we don't know what the "perfect world" is"

For crying out loud, we don't need to!!!! How many times must I say this. You are being really naive.

How can you claim that the world is perfect without defining what that means? The Bible is not telling us that the World is perfect.  Who's being "naive"?

So, you say it was perfect until the fall.

God has the choice, in his divine foreknowledge, of knowing all the worlds he could create and all their outcomes. He is perfect. He knows the fall will happen. He still chooses this one. Therefore, the fall, evil, suffering, plate tectonics (call it what you will) are necessary for the most perfect world! It's a simple argument that you have failed to grasp.

Not for the perfect world. For the world in which we have now that God is working out for His purpose. It's not about us. The failure to grasp the Christian world-view is yours.

"Johnny P has been consistent in his inability to answer what God has said about the questions he raised. I did address the argument because God has addressed and it was put to rest 2000 years ago. Just read your Bible for a change. Philosophy doesn't cut the mustard. Revelation is need. And you can't argue against Christianity without understanding what the Bible says and Johnny P shows no understanding. Double FacePalm."

What a joke. Really. The best part? 'Philosophy doesn't cut the mustard'. You've been schooled. Philosophy is everything. You cannot even establish epistemology without philosophy. in other words, everything you have said, ever, cannot be established without philosophical investigations into epistemology, aesthetics, moral philosophy and so on.Take the bible. How do you evaluate what it is trying to say? Philosophy.

I didn't say that philosophy should be tossed. I'm saying that it takes more than philosophy. Philosophy is necessary but not sufficient. And for someone who keeps saying that he doesn't need to define terms to now bring up the need to use philosophy  to "establish epistemology" is truly laughable. Hypocrisy much? I agree that philosophy is needed to evaluate what the Bible says but given how badly you have butchered the Christian Worldview, clearly either philosophy is not enough or you have been doing it wrong. [Yes, indeed, I am laughing at you].

I'm not sure it's worth me posting here any more unless you are
1) less naive and better equipped philosophically

I've seen nothing so far in your responses that lead me to think you are equipped with anything beyond erroneous presuppositions. 

2) slightly more humble (I apologise for my tone, but it seems you must fight fire with fire)

I wouldn't call rejecting your assumptions and presuppositions based on you getting Christianity wrong as arrogance. You're just a man like me. I think writing:

Well, for starters, I would be clever enough to create a life-sustaining planet that didn’t have plate tectonics that killed millions of people throughout history. I think that’s fairly obvious. Especially since no theodicy that you could offer says anything about the billions of animals and ecosystems destroyed in the 2004 tsunami.

is far more arrogant than anything I have ever written. LOL

3) Less fallacious

I would like to see you model less fallacious argumentation. 

What had happen' was.....: FacePalm of th Day #132 - Responding to Johnny P World and does God have Free Will?

I don't know if I have the energy for this.

I'm just getting started. 

"If you want a demonstration for why evil exists and that it's not gratuitous. , you have already conceded that evil does indeed exist."

Comments like this show just how naive you are. I do not even need to recognise that evil exists in my worldview, since I am not critiquing my worldview. If evil, or suffering or whatever you want to call it, exists in any form, then it needs explaining in light of god's omnibenevolence. If God can know all future contingent actualisations and has chosen this one, then this must be the most loving, even given the knowledge of all the suffering etc.

You can't meaningfully critique "Evil" from a Christian worldview without defining terms.The Bible tells us why there is no conflict with the reality of evil/suffering and God's goodness! I've given the same answers Christians have been giving since Jesus and you have failed to address them by just ignoring them with no meaningful rebuttal. I was hoping for better.

FacePalm of th Day #133 - Responding to Johnny P World and does God have Free Will? Part 2
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  1. I really am a busy man. The following quote is why I am going to politely refuse to comment further:

    "One of two things is true. When God first made earth, there was no earthquakes and it was not part of the prefect design or earthquakes are a consequence of the fall. I don't know but both of these possibilities fit the Christian worldview and does not not conflict with science."

    It is not worth my while. With rationality like that, you pick ideas out of the sky and believe them. And do not think this is anything like not being ABLE to comment on your points. It is a case of believing your points to be so implausible and irrational and poorly formulated as to waste my time when I have parenting, writing, a job and proper philosophy to attend to.

    I fear your delusions are getting the better of you and your appraisals of valid arguments.

  2. It is not worth my while. With rationality like that, you pick ideas out of the sky and believe them... I fear your delusions are getting the better of you and your appraisals of valid arguments.


  3. Ummm...picking ideas out of the sky + bad presuppositions + BAD LOGIC =

    1) God is perfect
    2) a perfect being cannot create imperfectly
    C) this universe is a perfect creation.\

    The it follows:

    1) this is a perfect universe
    2) we have tsunamis, malaria, cancer etc
    3) these things exist in a perfect world
    C) these things must be necessary for a perfect world

    Terrible. I've spent several posts explaining why and you, Johnny P, have not only failed to rebutt my arguments but also failed to substantiate yours nor have you given any reason or credentials for why your opinion should matter. If you wanna bow aren't adding anything anyway. Too hot for you. You haven't given a single meaningful response. I've answered your questions and you have just ignored them.

    As for you, Ryan Anderson, you can't add anything meaningful at all...I can at least give Johnny P the benefit of the doubt that he won't. I've written back and forth with you at length for almost a year. Still not impressed.

  4. Look, I genuinely think you are being a bit delusional here, and let me explain why. You seem to have opinions of your logical argumentation that exceed reality. Take the simple premise “God is perfect”. You wasted time equivocating on the meaning of this word without realising that it wasn’t important to the argument at all. You could have substituted perfect with A and followed that God created A-ly. All things in the universe (tsunamis etc) merely contribute to the notion that the world is A.

    And then you spout nonsense like this: “Too hot for you”

    The reason I am refusing to continue debating you is because, not only do you keep making blunders as above, but you make comments like this:

    “I'm saying that God in his omnipotence, omnibenevolence, and omniscent chose to create a life-sustaining universe that now has plat tectonics. When the earth was first formed - there was one land mass. One of two things is true. When God first made earth, there was no earthquakes and it was not part of the prefect design or earthquakes are a consequence of the fall. I don't know but both of these possibilities fit the Christian worldview and does not not conflict with science.”

    This really is utterly stupid. Harsh, but in reality, not harsh enough. To admit that you entertain both of those theories is enough to warn me off ever conversing with you again. Look, from this comment it is abundantly clear that we simply CANNOT debate. Why? Well, the world is full of people making empirical observations and creating (testable) theories based on these observations. These can be disproved using the scientific method, the best method for achieving cumulative accuracy that there is.

    YOU, however, take those observations, and sweep them under the carpet / stuff them down your pants / pretend they don’t exist. Your two ‘theories’ or ‘ideas’ are hilarious. They are hilarious because if you knew the first thing about cosmology or geology, you would know that they are empirically disprovable. We know EXACTLY why and how plate tectonics work. We know how planets form. Heck, scientists reckon they have even empirically seen it off the star T Chamaeleontis. So it is pointless debating with you when you can simply claim any theory out of your arse while ignoring all empirical data. It renders the collection of all such data pointless. It is my opinion that you should never receive medical help, you have no right to use the internet and modern technology. All of these things are a result of the scientific method which helps to accumulate knowledge and develop everything. You, however, decide to ignore any science that may harm your worldview, and use only that which doesn’t harm your worldview in a world of cherry-picking. Such double standards are hypocritical. My partner’s daughter in her first year of a geology degree could disprove your crazy ideas in an instance. Go and read some cosmology. Go and learn. Don’t argue out of your depth. Get the philosophical training and the ancillary knowledge to deserve a place at the debating table with people who clearly have a better idea of science and logic. Good day to you, and don’t you dare say anything like ‘it’s too hot for me’ since you seem to struggle to argue yourself out of a paper bag and I really do have better things to do.

  5. Incidentally, I was reading the conversation you had on DC some time ago and I had to cringe.

    Examples of your superb logic:

    "He isn't right because he's smarter or has some special interpretation you are too stupid to understand. He is right because he agrees with God"

    "your own sins affect others around you - even those not yet born. "

    "That is true no matter who you and where you live. I'm suggesting that God created everything and placed you in the best possible place at the best possible time with all the life experiences that would best lead you to God."

    ".I'm not a universalist because the sacrifice was too high for God to redeem His people for everyone to just get a pass."

    "I didn't say Adam and Eve were enslaved to sin...We are." - but God knew that Adam and Eve would do what they did at creation, so who is ultimately responsible. He chose that outcome over and above any other outcome. Oh yeah, and you're a fool to think Adam and Eve actually existed. Again, empirically false.

    "all people are evil and deserving of Hell."

    "I'm not a young earth creationist and neither" and yet you believe in Adam and Eve and some very strange ideas of plate tectonics etc.

    etc etc