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Re: to Heinz

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  • Heinz Schmitz
    Hi Matt What is the evidence that God exists? Heinz ... only ... exists.
    Message 1 of 27 , Sep 24, 2008
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      Hi Matt

      What is the evidence that God exists?
      Heinz

      --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "wglmp" <mtillman@...>
      wrote:
      >
      > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Heinz Schmitz"
      > <christian_skeptic@> wrote:
      > >
      > > I have never been removed or disfellowshipped, I simply do not
      > believe
      > > in God anymore.
      > > Heinz
      >
      > When I left Christianity, I also stopped believing in God. But not
      only
      > did I find evidence God exists, I found I NEEDED to believe God
      exists.
      > [*] That is probably the difference between us.
      >
      > Matt
      > * So I became a Righteous Gentile.
      >
    • wglmp
      ... There are seven catagories of evidence, but the one that convinced me was national revelation.
      Message 2 of 27 , Sep 25, 2008
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        --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Heinz Schmitz"
        <christian_skeptic@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi Matt
        >
        > What is the evidence that God exists?
        > Heinz

        There are seven catagories of evidence, but the one that convinced me
        was national revelation.
        http://judaism.about.com/library/3_askrabbi_o/bl_simmons_faith.htm
        Matt
      • tcmadd2@aol.com
        Heinz, The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of the a Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the law of cause
        Message 3 of 27 , Sep 25, 2008
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          Heinz,
           
          The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of the a Creator.  One of the fundamental principals of science is the law of cause and effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to happen.  The idea that the universe just appeared out of nothing for no reason is not tenable.  So, there must be a Cause.
           
          I am well aware that PBS specials frequently speak of "bubble universes" and "quantum foam" in an attempt to justify belief in a purely natural cause of the universe.  However, what they never tell you is that there is absolutely no observational or experimental evidence to support the idea. 
           
          Tom
           
          In a message dated 9/25/2008 10:41:28 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, mtillman@... writes:

          --- In biblicalapologetics @yahoogroups. com, "Heinz Schmitz"
          <christian_skeptic@ ...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi Matt
          >
          > What is the evidence that God exists?
          > Heinz

          There are seven catagories of evidence, but the one that convinced me
          was national revelation.
          http://judaism. about.com/ library/3_ askrabbi_ o/bl_simmons_ faith.htm
          Matt





          Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and calculators.
        • Paul Leonard
          Yeah, These scientists are the new Prophets . Believe because they say so. ... From: tcmadd2@aol.com Subject: Re: [biblicalapologetics]
          Message 4 of 27 , Sep 25, 2008
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            Yeah,

            These "scientists" are the new "Prophets". Believe because they say so.

            --- On Thu, 9/25/08, tcmadd2@... <tcmadd2@...> wrote:
            From: tcmadd2@... <tcmadd2@...>
            Subject: Re: [biblicalapologetics] Re: to Heinz
            To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
            Date: Thursday, September 25, 2008, 10:52 AM

            Heinz,
             
            The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of the a Creator.  One of the fundamental principals of science is the law of cause and effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to happen.  The idea that the universe just appeared out of nothing for no reason is not tenable.  So, there must be a Cause.
             
            I am well aware that PBS specials frequently speak of "bubble universes" and "quantum foam" in an attempt to justify belief in a purely natural cause of the universe.  However, what they never tell you is that there is absolutely no observational or experimental evidence to support the idea. 
             
            Tom
             
            In a message dated 9/25/2008 10:41:28 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, mtillman@ec. rr.com writes:

            --- In biblicalapologetics @yahoogroups. com, "Heinz Schmitz"
            <christian_skeptic@ ...> wrote:
            >
            > Hi Matt
            >
            > What is the evidence that God exists?
            > Heinz

            There are seven catagories of evidence, but the one that convinced me
            was national revelation.
            http://judaism. about.com/ library/3_ askrabbi_ o/bl_simmons_ faith.htm
            Matt





            Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and calculators.
          • tcmadd2@aol.com
            Heinz, Could you be more specific? skrtrth In a message dated 9/25/2008 11:40:22 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, anotherpaul2001@yahoo.com writes: Yeah, These
            Message 5 of 27 , Sep 25, 2008
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              Heinz,
               
              Could you be more specific?
               
              skrtrth
               
              In a message dated 9/25/2008 11:40:22 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, anotherpaul2001@... writes:

              Yeah,

              These "scientists" are the new "Prophets". Believe because they say so.

              --- On Thu, 9/25/08, tcmadd2@aol. com <tcmadd2@aol. com> wrote:
              From: tcmadd2@aol. com <tcmadd2@aol. com>
              Subject: Re: [biblicalapologetic s] Re: to Heinz
              To: biblicalapologetics @yahoogroups. com
              Date: Thursday, September 25, 2008, 10:52 AM

              Heinz,
               
              The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of the a Creator.  One of the fundamental principals of science is the law of cause and effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to happen.  The idea that the universe just appeared out of nothing for no reason is not tenable.  So, there must be a Cause.
               
              I am well aware that PBS specials frequently speak of "bubble universes" and "quantum foam" in an attempt to justify belief in a purely natural cause of the universe.  However, what they never tell you is that there is absolutely no observational or experimental evidence to support the idea. 
               
              Tom
               
              In a message dated 9/25/2008 10:41:28 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, mtillman@ec. rr.com writes:

              --- In biblicalapologetics @yahoogroups. com, "Heinz Schmitz"
              <christian_skeptic@ ...> wrote:
              >
              > Hi Matt
              >
              > What is the evidence that God exists?
              > Heinz

              There are seven catagories of evidence, but the one that convinced me
              was national revelation.
              http://judaism. about.com/ library/3_ askrabbi_ o/bl_simmons_ faith.htm
              Matt





              Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and calculators.





              Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and calculators.
            • Heinz Schmitz
              ... the a ... cause and ... idea that ... tenable. So, ... But Christians don t believe in Cause and Effect, because the law demands that the causer must
              Message 6 of 27 , Sep 26, 2008
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                --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, tcmadd2@... wrote:
                >
                > Heinz,
                >
                > The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of
                the a
                > Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the law of
                cause and
                > effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to happen. The
                idea that
                > the universe just appeared out of nothing for no reason is not
                tenable. So,
                > there must be a Cause.

                But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't believe
                the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you yourself
                won't accept.
                Heinz
              • Heinz Schmitz
                ... so. ... Believe because they say so is the opposite of Science. Believe because they say so is exactly what your religion is. Science is based upon
                Message 7 of 27 , Sep 26, 2008
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                  --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Paul Leonard
                  <anotherpaul2001@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Yeah,
                  >
                  > These "scientists" are the new "Prophets". Believe because they say
                  so.
                  >

                  "Believe because they say so" is the opposite of Science. "Believe
                  because they say so" is exactly what your religion is.

                  "Science is based upon verifiable evidence. Religious faith not only
                  lacks evidence, its independence from evidence is its pride and joy,
                  shouted from the rooftops. Why else would Christians wax critical of
                  doubting Thomas? The other apostles are held up to us as exemplars of
                  virtue because faith was enough for them. Doubting Thomas, on the other
                  hand, required evidence. Perhaps he should be the patron saint of
                  scientists." Richard Dawkins
                • wglmp
                  ... of ... of ... believe ... yourself ... What do you mean by saying the causer didn t have a cause? His cause was that we might earn a portion in the World
                  Message 8 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                    --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Heinz Schmitz"
                    <christian_skeptic@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, tcmadd2@ wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Heinz,
                    > >
                    > > The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence
                    of
                    > the a
                    > > Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the law
                    of
                    > cause and
                    > > effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to happen. The
                    > idea that
                    > > the universe just appeared out of nothing for no reason is not
                    > tenable. So,
                    > > there must be a Cause.
                    >
                    > But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                    > demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't
                    believe
                    > the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you
                    yourself
                    > won't accept.
                    > Heinz
                    >

                    What do you mean by saying the causer didn't have a cause? His cause
                    was that we might earn a portion in the World to Come.

                    Matt
                  • wglmp
                    ... say ... only ... joy, ... of ... of ... other ... Apparently, Dawkins didn t know that there is evidence for the existence of God and needed to make up a
                    Message 9 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                      --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Heinz Schmitz"
                      <christian_skeptic@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Paul Leonard
                      > <anotherpaul2001@> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Yeah,
                      > >
                      > > These "scientists" are the new "Prophets". Believe because they
                      say
                      > so.
                      > >
                      >
                      > "Believe because they say so" is the opposite of Science. "Believe
                      > because they say so" is exactly what your religion is.
                      >
                      > "Science is based upon verifiable evidence. Religious faith not
                      only
                      > lacks evidence, its independence from evidence is its pride and
                      joy,
                      > shouted from the rooftops. Why else would Christians wax critical
                      of
                      > doubting Thomas? The other apostles are held up to us as exemplars
                      of
                      > virtue because faith was enough for them. Doubting Thomas, on the
                      other
                      > hand, required evidence. Perhaps he should be the patron saint of
                      > scientists." Richard Dawkins
                      >

                      Apparently, Dawkins didn't know that there is evidence for the
                      existence of God and needed to make up a reason why the (supposed)
                      lack of evidence is a good thing. Douglas Adams said something
                      similar in The Hitchhiker's Guide, if I'm not misunderstanding you
                      (or Dawkins).

                      Matt
                    • Heinz Schmitz
                      ... You are taking it a different way. The argument states that if everything must have a cause, then the next question is Who made god? Invoking an acausal
                      Message 10 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                        > > But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                        > > demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't
                        > believe
                        > > the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you
                        > yourself
                        > > won't accept.
                        > > Heinz
                        > >
                        >
                        > What do you mean by saying the causer didn't have a cause? His cause
                        > was that we might earn a portion in the World to Come.
                        >
                        > Matt
                        >

                        You are taking it a different way. The argument states that if
                        everything must have a cause, then the next question is "Who made god?"
                        Invoking an acausal God to avoid the infinite regression problem is
                        not the answer because you cannot solve a mystery with an even greater
                        mystery. It also means you do not actually believe in Cause and Effect.
                      • Heinz Schmitz
                        ... Which is.....?
                        Message 11 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                          --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "wglmp" <mtillman@...> wrote:

                          > Apparently, Dawkins didn't know that there is evidence for the
                          > existence of God.....
                          >

                          Which is.....?
                        • wglmp
                          ... law ... cause ... god? ... greater ... Effect. Oh. Well. That s very different. Nevermind. - Emile Latella
                          Message 12 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                            --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Heinz Schmitz"
                            <christian_skeptic@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > > > But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the
                            law
                            > > > demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't
                            > > believe
                            > > > the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you
                            > > yourself
                            > > > won't accept.
                            > > > Heinz
                            > > >
                            > >
                            > > What do you mean by saying the causer didn't have a cause? His
                            cause
                            > > was that we might earn a portion in the World to Come.
                            > >
                            > > Matt
                            > >
                            >
                            > You are taking it a different way. The argument states that if
                            > everything must have a cause, then the next question is "Who made
                            god?"
                            > Invoking an acausal God to avoid the infinite regression problem is
                            > not the answer because you cannot solve a mystery with an even
                            greater
                            > mystery. It also means you do not actually believe in Cause and
                            Effect.


                            "Oh. Well. That's very different. Nevermind." - Emile Latella
                          • Paul Leonard
                            He is both cause and effect. His name, which is a case of self identification with meaning is; I will become what I will become, I shall be what I shall be, 
                            Message 13 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                              He is both cause and effect.

                              His name, which is a case of self identification with meaning is; I will become what I will become, I shall be what I shall be,  or similar.

                              --- On Sat, 9/27/08, wglmp <mtillman@...> wrote:
                              From: wglmp <mtillman@...>
                              Subject: [biblicalapologetics] Re: to Heinz/Cause and Effect
                              To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
                              Date: Saturday, September 27, 2008, 4:38 AM

                              --- In biblicalapologetics @yahoogroups. com, "Heinz Schmitz"
                              <christian_skeptic@ ...> wrote:
                              >
                              > --- In biblicalapologetics @yahoogroups. com, tcmadd2@ wrote:
                              > >
                              > > Heinz,
                              > >
                              > > The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence
                              of
                              > the a
                              > > Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the law
                              of
                              > cause and
                              > > effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to happen. The
                              > idea that
                              > > the universe just appeared out of nothing for no reason is not
                              > tenable. So,
                              > > there must be a Cause.
                              >
                              > But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                              > demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't
                              believe
                              > the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you
                              yourself
                              > won't accept.
                              > Heinz
                              >

                              What do you mean by saying the causer didn't have a cause? His cause
                              was that we might earn a portion in the World to Come.

                              Matt

                            • Robert M. Bowman, Jr.
                              Heinz, You wrote:
                              Message 14 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                                Heinz,

                                You wrote:

                                << You are taking it a different way. The argument states that if
                                everything must have a cause, then the next question is "Who made
                                god?"
                                Invoking an acausal God to avoid the infinite regression problem is
                                not the answer because you cannot solve a mystery with an even greater
                                mystery. It also means you do not actually believe in Cause and
                                Effect. >>

                                Your objection is a common one from atheists (I gather you picked it
                                up from them) and is horribly misplaced. The objection assumes that
                                theists claim that "everything must have a cause." If that were the
                                premise of the theists' argument, the objection would be valid,
                                because if everything must have a cause then of course God, if he
                                exists (that is, if he is a "thing"), would also have to have a
                                cause. But no theistic apologist, philosopher, or even half-decently
                                read layperson has ever advanced such an argument.

                                The theistic premise (of just one form of the cosmological argument)
                                is that each thing that exists either has a cause or it does not, and
                                that this applies to the universe as a whole. Either the universe has
                                a cause or it does not. Now, theists contend that the universe is the
                                sort of thing that needs a cause. This claim may be defended in
                                various ways. Anything that had a beginning also has a cause. (We now
                                know from scientific cosmology that the universe had a beginning.)
                                Anything that is contingent, that is such that its existence is not
                                metaphysically necessary (that is, it might not have existed at all),
                                must have a cause. However the argument is developed, the point is
                                that the universe is the sort of thing that must have a cause. The
                                theistic argument does NOT claim that "everything" must have a cause.

                                In Christ's service,
                                Rob Bowman
                                Executive Director
                                Institute for Religious Research
                                Online: http://www.irr.org/
                              • Paul Leonard
                                Yes, a believer is one who believes in a God who has always existed. That is actually the only viable answer to the question of the beginning whether we
                                Message 15 of 27 , Sep 27, 2008
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                                  Yes, a "believer" is one who believes in a God who has always existed. That is actually the only viable answer to the question of the "beginning" whether we call it a big bang or not..

                                  If we eliminate an eternal existing God we simply push the cause and effect into the infinite past. Eventually the possible repetitions actually expose the problem. At some point there was a start and a starter. Pushing it back into an unknown past does not eliminate that requirement.

                                  --- On Sat, 9/27/08, Robert M. Bowman, Jr. <faithhasitsreasons@...> wrote:
                                  From: Robert M. Bowman, Jr. <faithhasitsreasons@...>
                                  Subject: [biblicalapologetics] Re: to Heinz/Cause and Effect
                                  To: biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com
                                  Date: Saturday, September 27, 2008, 9:12 PM

                                  Heinz,

                                  You wrote:

                                  << You are taking it a different way. The argument states that if
                                  everything must have a cause, then the next question is "Who made
                                  god?"
                                  Invoking an acausal God to avoid the infinite regression problem is
                                  not the answer because you cannot solve a mystery with an even greater
                                  mystery. It also means you do not actually believe in Cause and
                                  Effect. >>

                                  Your objection is a common one from atheists (I gather you picked it
                                  up from them) and is horribly misplaced. The objection assumes that
                                  theists claim that "everything must have a cause." If that were the
                                  premise of the theists' argument, the objection would be valid,
                                  because if everything must have a cause then of course God, if he
                                  exists (that is, if he is a "thing"), would also have to have a
                                  cause. But no theistic apologist, philosopher, or even half-decently
                                  read layperson has ever advanced such an argument.

                                  The theistic premise (of just one form of the cosmological argument)
                                  is that each thing that exists either has a cause or it does not, and
                                  that this applies to the universe as a whole. Either the universe has
                                  a cause or it does not. Now, theists contend that the universe is the
                                  sort of thing that needs a cause. This claim may be defended in
                                  various ways. Anything that had a beginning also has a cause. (We now
                                  know from scientific cosmology that the universe had a beginning.)
                                  Anything that is contingent, that is such that its existence is not
                                  metaphysically necessary (that is, it might not have existed at all),
                                  must have a cause. However the argument is developed, the point is
                                  that the universe is the sort of thing that must have a cause. The
                                  theistic argument does NOT claim that "everything" must have a cause.

                                  In Christ's service,
                                  Rob Bowman
                                  Executive Director
                                  Institute for Religious Research
                                  Online: http://www.irr. org/

                                • Heinz Schmitz
                                  My response was to others on this board who gave a very basic Cause and Effect argument, not one as fleshed out as your reply. In any case the argument still
                                  Message 16 of 27 , Sep 28, 2008
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                                    My response was to others on this board who gave a very basic Cause
                                    and Effect argument, not one as fleshed out as your reply. In any case
                                    the argument still holds without need of a god.
                                    There could be multiple uncaused causes, multiple gods, for instance,
                                    or the uncaused cause could simply a force either unintelligent or
                                    impersonal. If you argue that a God is needed to explain the existence
                                    of a universe, then I need to ask why God exists. All these
                                    existential questions like "why is there something rather than
                                    nothing?" or "why is there a universe rather than nothing?" cannot
                                    simply be answered by invoking a God because then I am forced to ask
                                    "why is there a God rather than nothing?"

                                    Sure, you can reply that a universe needs to be caused, but stating
                                    that a god does not a beginning is simply a theological ploy. You are
                                    making the rules as you go along. Besides, if God does not need a
                                    beginning, not everything that exists needs a beginning. If God is the
                                    exception to the rule, then why can't any other explanation not be an
                                    exception as well?

                                    I want access to the same loopholes you allow for yourself.

                                    --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Robert M. Bowman, Jr."
                                    <faithhasitsreasons@...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    > Heinz,
                                    >
                                    > You wrote:
                                    >
                                    > << You are taking it a different way. The argument states that if
                                    > everything must have a cause, then the next question is "Who made
                                    > god?"
                                    > Invoking an acausal God to avoid the infinite regression problem is
                                    > not the answer because you cannot solve a mystery with an even greater
                                    > mystery. It also means you do not actually believe in Cause and
                                    > Effect. >>
                                    >
                                    > Your objection is a common one from atheists (I gather you picked it
                                    > up from them) and is horribly misplaced. The objection assumes that
                                    > theists claim that "everything must have a cause." If that were the
                                    > premise of the theists' argument, the objection would be valid,
                                    > because if everything must have a cause then of course God, if he
                                    > exists (that is, if he is a "thing"), would also have to have a
                                    > cause. But no theistic apologist, philosopher, or even half-decently
                                    > read layperson has ever advanced such an argument.
                                    >
                                    > The theistic premise (of just one form of the cosmological argument)
                                    > is that each thing that exists either has a cause or it does not, and
                                    > that this applies to the universe as a whole. Either the universe has
                                    > a cause or it does not. Now, theists contend that the universe is the
                                    > sort of thing that needs a cause. This claim may be defended in
                                    > various ways. Anything that had a beginning also has a cause. (We now
                                    > know from scientific cosmology that the universe had a beginning.)
                                    > Anything that is contingent, that is such that its existence is not
                                    > metaphysically necessary (that is, it might not have existed at all),
                                    > must have a cause. However the argument is developed, the point is
                                    > that the universe is the sort of thing that must have a cause. The
                                    > theistic argument does NOT claim that "everything" must have a cause.
                                    >
                                    > In Christ's service,
                                    > Rob Bowman
                                    > Executive Director
                                    > Institute for Religious Research
                                    > Online: http://www.irr.org/
                                    >
                                  • Heinz Schmitz
                                    ... existed. That is actually the only viable answer to the question of the beginning whether we call it a big bang or not.. ... effect into the infinite
                                    Message 17 of 27 , Sep 28, 2008
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                                      --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, Paul Leonard
                                      <anotherpaul2001@...> wrote:
                                      >
                                      > Yes, a "believer" is one who believes in a God who has always
                                      existed. That is actually the only viable answer to the question of
                                      the "beginning" whether we call it a big bang or not..
                                      >
                                      > If we eliminate an eternal existing God we simply push the cause and
                                      effect into the infinite past. Eventually the possible repetitions
                                      actually expose the problem. At some point there was a start and a
                                      starter. Pushing it back into an unknown past does not eliminate that
                                      requirement.

                                      Reply: Invoking a supernatural explanation answers nothing. We have
                                      explained away difficulties for thousands of years and the results
                                      have been stagnation. It is only in recent history that men have
                                      stopped answering everything with "goddidit" and we have seen
                                      marvelous results as a consequence. I suppose that inserting a
                                      supernatural answer where we were ignorant may have been one of the
                                      greatest impediments to progress in history. A belief in God may well
                                      have been detrimental to our long term survival. Let's learn from
                                      history this time. Think of how many centuries ago we could have
                                      discovered a cure for cancer had an extreme reliance on stating
                                      "goddidit" not even have been possible.
                                      Heinz
                                    • Robert M. Bowman, Jr.
                                      Heinz, You wrote: This is
                                      Message 18 of 27 , Sep 28, 2008
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                                        Heinz,

                                        You wrote:

                                        << My response was to others on this board who gave a very basic
                                        Cause and Effect argument, not one as fleshed out as your reply. >>

                                        This is simply incorrect. Your response in post 2114 was to tcmadd2,
                                        who had written:

                                        << The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of
                                        the a Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the
                                        law of cause and effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to
                                        happen. The idea that the universe just appeared out of nothing for
                                        no reason is not tenable. So, there must be a Cause. >>

                                        You replied as follows:

                                        << But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                                        demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't believe
                                        the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you yourself
                                        won't accept. >>

                                        As I hope you can see here, you made precisely the mistake I said you
                                        did. The theistic argument that was presented to you was not
                                        that "everything" must have a cause but that everything
                                        that "happens" must have a cause. If something happens, so the
                                        argument goes, there must be some sort of cause that brought it
                                        about. The universe "happened" because it came into existence a
                                        finite amount of time ago. This event of the universe's origin is not
                                        self-explanatory; it requires some sort of causal agent or mechanism.

                                        You wrote:

                                        << In any case the argument still holds without need of a god. There
                                        could be multiple uncaused causes, multiple gods, for instance, or
                                        the uncaused cause could simply a force either unintelligent or
                                        impersonal. >>

                                        These are alternative explanations of convenience to try to escape
                                        the point that the universe did not cause itself to exist and
                                        therefore something transcending the universe must exist. The
                                        cosmological argument does not pretend to prove EVERYTHING about God
                                        in one fell swoop. It simply proves materialistic atheism to be an
                                        inadequate worldview. Contrary to Carl Sagan, the cosmos is not all
                                        that there ever was and ever will be.

                                        You wrote:

                                        << If you argue that a God is needed to explain the existence of a
                                        universe, then I need to ask why God exists. All these existential
                                        questions like "why is there something rather than nothing?" or "why
                                        is there a universe rather than nothing?" cannot simply be answered
                                        by invoking a God because then I am forced to ask "why is there a God
                                        rather than nothing?" >>

                                        The question "Why is there something rather than nothing?" is an
                                        important and valid existential question for human beings who realize
                                        that they and everything around them could quite easily have been
                                        very different or not existed at all. The question arises in light of
                                        the contingency, the impermanence, the transitoriness of our lives
                                        and of the very world in which we live.

                                        On the other hand, asking "Why is there a God rather than nothing?"
                                        is merely a debating ploy, as you in effect admit. If God exists, he
                                        is, by definition, the one self-existent reality on which all other
                                        reality depends. Thus, if God exists, he exists for no reason outside
                                        his very nature as self-existent being. If I could give you an answer
                                        to your question, I would be conceding that God is not God.

                                        You wrote:

                                        << Sure, you can reply that a universe needs to be caused, but
                                        stating that a god does not [need] a beginning is simply a
                                        theological ploy. You are making the rules as you go along. >>

                                        Not at all. The "rules" here are simply a matter of consistency. We
                                        know that there are things that exist that were caused to exist--
                                        things that had a beginning and are dependent on other things for
                                        their existence. Indeed, this is true of everything we can see or
                                        detect that is part of the physical world. We can see through
                                        reasoned reflection that there must be something (whatever it might
                                        be) that exists that does not depend on anything else for its
                                        existence, something that is self-existent and was therefore not
                                        caused to exist. Now the question is whether this non-dependent
                                        something with no beginning that is self-existent is the universe, or
                                        something beyond it. The evidence is now overwhelming that the
                                        universe had a beginning and therefore cannot be that self-existence,
                                        non-contingent, beginningless something. Therefore, something beyond
                                        the universe must exist that in some way gave rise to the universe.

                                        Was this transcendent something "God"? Well, the cosmological
                                        argument cannot by itself provide enough details about the
                                        transcendent being that originated the universe to know if it matches
                                        the description of the God of the Bible. But really, in terms of the
                                        worldviews actually on the market, which one best fits the evidence?
                                        Not materialistic atheism, which denies anything transcending the
                                        universe; not polytheism, which views the gods as contingent beings
                                        birthed in a primordial past; not pantheism, which does not view the
                                        world as an effect brought about by a transcendent being but rather
                                        (typically) as an illusory expression of the only being that truly
                                        exists. The theistic worldview, on the other hand, matches nicely
                                        with the evidence of the universe's beginning.

                                        You wrote:

                                        << Besides, if God does not need a beginning, not everything that
                                        exists needs a beginning. If God is the exception to the rule, then
                                        why can't any other explanation not be an exception as well? >>

                                        The rule is a straw man of atheist polemical creation. We do not
                                        claim that there is a rule that everything that exists needs a
                                        beginning. We claim that it is plain that everything in and of the
                                        physical universe had a beginning, that the evidence shows that the
                                        physical universe itself had a beginning, and yet there must be
                                        *something* that did not have beginning. God is the best and most
                                        obvious candidate for this something. If you have a better candidate,
                                        bring it forth.

                                        In Christ's service,
                                        Rob Bowman
                                        Executive Director
                                        Institute for Religious Research
                                        Online: http://www.irr.org/
                                      • tcmadd2@aol.com
                                        This is not really a reply. I cannot find this board in yahoogroups. How do I find it? skrtrth In a message dated 9/28/2008 4:16:31 P.M. Pacific Daylight
                                        Message 19 of 27 , Sep 29, 2008
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          This is not really a reply.  I cannot find this board in yahoogroups.  How do I find it?
                                           
                                          skrtrth
                                           
                                          In a message dated 9/28/2008 4:16:31 P.M. Pacific Daylight Time, faithhasitsreasons@... writes:

                                          Heinz,

                                          You wrote:

                                          << My response was to others on this board who gave a very basic
                                          Cause and Effect argument, not one as fleshed out as your reply. >>

                                          This is simply incorrect. Your response in post 2114 was to tcmadd2,
                                          who had written:

                                          << The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of
                                          the a Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the
                                          law of cause and effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to
                                          happen. The idea that the universe just appeared out of nothing for
                                          no reason is not tenable. So, there must be a Cause. >>

                                          You replied as follows:

                                          << But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                                          demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't believe
                                          the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you yourself
                                          won't accept. >>

                                          As I hope you can see here, you made precisely the mistake I said you
                                          did. The theistic argument that was presented to you was not
                                          that "everything" must have a cause but that everything
                                          that "happens" must have a cause. If something happens, so the
                                          argument goes, there must be some sort of cause that brought it
                                          about. The universe "happened" because it came into existence a
                                          finite amount of time ago. This event of the universe's origin is not
                                          self-explanatory; it requires some sort of causal agent or mechanism.

                                          You wrote:

                                          << In any case the argument still holds without need of a god. There
                                          could be multiple uncaused causes, multiple gods, for instance, or
                                          the uncaused cause could simply a force either unintelligent or
                                          impersonal. >>

                                          These are alternative explanations of convenience to try to escape
                                          the point that the universe did not cause itself to exist and
                                          therefore something transcending the universe must exist. The
                                          cosmological argument does not pretend to prove EVERYTHING about God
                                          in one fell swoop. It simply proves materialistic atheism to be an
                                          inadequate worldview. Contrary to Carl Sagan, the cosmos is not all
                                          that there ever was and ever will be.

                                          You wrote:

                                          << If you argue that a God is needed to explain the existence of a
                                          universe, then I need to ask why God exists. All these existential
                                          questions like "why is there something rather than nothing?" or "why
                                          is there a universe rather than nothing?" cannot simply be answered
                                          by invoking a God because then I am forced to ask "why is there a God
                                          rather than nothing?" >>

                                          The question "Why is there something rather than nothing?" is an
                                          important and valid existential question for human beings who realize
                                          that they and everything around them could quite easily have been
                                          very different or not existed at all. The question arises in light of
                                          the contingency, the impermanence, the transitoriness of our lives
                                          and of the very world in which we live.

                                          On the other hand, asking "Why is there a God rather than nothing?"
                                          is merely a debating ploy, as you in effect admit. If God exists, he
                                          is, by definition, the one self-existent reality on which all other
                                          reality depends. Thus, if God exists, he exists for no reason outside
                                          his very nature as self-existent being. If I could give you an answer
                                          to your question, I would be conceding that God is not God.

                                          You wrote:

                                          << Sure, you can reply that a universe needs to be caused, but
                                          stating that a god does not [need] a beginning is simply a
                                          theological ploy. You are making the rules as you go along. >>

                                          Not at all. The "rules" here are simply a matter of consistency. We
                                          know that there are things that exist that were caused to exist--
                                          things that had a beginning and are dependent on other things for
                                          their existence. Indeed, this is true of everything we can see or
                                          detect that is part of the physical world. We can see through
                                          reasoned reflection that there must be something (whatever it might
                                          be) that exists that does not depend on anything else for its
                                          existence, something that is self-existent and was therefore not
                                          caused to exist. Now the question is whether this non-dependent
                                          something with no beginning that is self-existent is the universe, or
                                          something beyond it. The evidence is now overwhelming that the
                                          universe had a beginning and therefore cannot be that self-existence,
                                          non-contingent, beginningless something. Therefore, something beyond
                                          the universe must exist that in some way gave rise to the universe.

                                          Was this transcendent something "God"? Well, the cosmological
                                          argument cannot by itself provide enough details about the
                                          transcendent being that originated the universe to know if it matches
                                          the description of the God of the Bible. But really, in terms of the
                                          worldviews actually on the market, which one best fits the evidence?
                                          Not materialistic atheism, which denies anything transcending the
                                          universe; not polytheism, which views the gods as contingent beings
                                          birthed in a primordial past; not pantheism, which does not view the
                                          world as an effect brought about by a transcendent being but rather
                                          (typically) as an illusory expression of the only being that truly
                                          exists. The theistic worldview, on the other hand, matches nicely
                                          with the evidence of the universe's beginning.

                                          You wrote:

                                          << Besides, if God does not need a beginning, not everything that
                                          exists needs a beginning. If God is the exception to the rule, then
                                          why can't any other explanation not be an exception as well? >>

                                          The rule is a straw man of atheist polemical creation. We do not
                                          claim that there is a rule that everything that exists needs a
                                          beginning. We claim that it is plain that everything in and of the
                                          physical universe had a beginning, that the evidence shows that the
                                          physical universe itself had a beginning, and yet there must be
                                          *something* that did not have beginning. God is the best and most
                                          obvious candidate for this something. If you have a better candidate,
                                          bring it forth.

                                          In Christ's service,
                                          Rob Bowman
                                          Executive Director
                                          Institute for Religious Research
                                          Online: http://www.irr. org/





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                                        • Robert M. Bowman, Jr.
                                          In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, tcmadd2@... wrote: Go
                                          Message 20 of 27 , Sep 29, 2008
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, tcmadd2@... wrote:

                                            << This is not really a reply. I cannot find this board in
                                            yahoogroups. How do I find it? >>

                                            Go here:

                                            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/biblicalapologetics/

                                            In Christ's service,
                                            Rob Bowman
                                            Executive Director
                                            Institute for Religious Research
                                            Online: http://www.irr.org
                                          • Heinz Schmitz
                                            ... Reply: I am not seeing this as you are. The theistic argument that was presented to you was not ... Reply: The problem everyone else sees with this is that
                                            Message 21 of 27 , Sep 29, 2008
                                            • 0 Attachment
                                              --- In biblicalapologetics@yahoogroups.com, "Robert M. Bowman, Jr."
                                              <faithhasitsreasons@...> wrote:
                                              >
                                              > Heinz,
                                              >
                                              > You wrote:
                                              >
                                              > << My response was to others on this board who gave a very basic
                                              > Cause and Effect argument, not one as fleshed out as your reply. >>
                                              >
                                              > This is simply incorrect. Your response in post 2114 was to tcmadd2,
                                              > who had written:
                                              >
                                              > << The universe functions as a very good indicator of the existence of
                                              > the a Creator. One of the fundamental principals of science is the
                                              > law of cause and effect. Nothing just happens, something causes it to
                                              > happen. The idea that the universe just appeared out of nothing for
                                              > no reason is not tenable. So, there must be a Cause. >>
                                              >
                                              > You replied as follows:
                                              >
                                              > << But Christians don't believe in Cause and Effect, because the law
                                              > demands that the causer must also have a cause, and you don't believe
                                              > the causer had a cause. I don't have to play by the rules you yourself
                                              > won't accept. >>
                                              >
                                              > As I hope you can see here, you made precisely the mistake I said you
                                              > did.

                                              Reply: I am not seeing this as you are.

                                              The theistic argument that was presented to you was not
                                              > that "everything" must have a cause but that everything
                                              > that "happens" must have a cause.

                                              Reply: The problem everyone else sees with this is that theists have
                                              invented a whole nother (not really a word, I know) fairy tale realm
                                              of existence outside of "happens" of which we have absolutely no
                                              evidence for. Theists just define a very problematic existence. That's
                                              not a solution to the problem of First Cause, it is just an evasion of
                                              the problem.

                                              >
                                              > You wrote:
                                              >
                                              > << In any case the argument still holds without need of a god. There
                                              > could be multiple uncaused causes, multiple gods, for instance, or
                                              > the uncaused cause could simply a force either unintelligent or
                                              > impersonal. >>
                                              >
                                              > These are alternative explanations of convenience to try to escape
                                              > the point that the universe did not cause itself to exist and
                                              > therefore something transcending the universe must exist. The
                                              > cosmological argument does not pretend to prove EVERYTHING about God
                                              > in one fell swoop. It simply proves materialistic atheism to be an
                                              > inadequate worldview. Contrary to Carl Sagan, the cosmos is not all
                                              > that there ever was and ever will be.
                                              >

                                              Reply: If materialistic atheism is inadequate, a supernatural
                                              alternative based on the writings of primitive mystics does not better
                                              it by default.

                                              >
                                              > You wrote:
                                              >
                                              > << Besides, if God does not need a beginning, not everything that
                                              > exists needs a beginning. If God is the exception to the rule, then
                                              > why can't any other explanation not be an exception as well? >>
                                              >
                                              > The rule is a straw man of atheist polemical creation. We do not
                                              > claim that there is a rule that everything that exists needs a
                                              > beginning. We claim that it is plain that everything in and of the
                                              > physical universe had a beginning, that the evidence shows that the
                                              > physical universe itself had a beginning, and yet there must be
                                              > *something* that did not have beginning. God is the best and most
                                              > obvious candidate for this something. If you have a better candidate,
                                              > bring it forth.
                                              >

                                              Invoking a supernatural explanation is not the best nor the most
                                              obvious candidate, it is a cop-out. Sure, it is an easy answer, and a
                                              convenient one. Don't know how this or that could have happened?
                                              Simply reply GODDIDIT! We have a lot of questions to still answer, and
                                              the more answers we find the better it is for everyone. We benefit the
                                              more we know about the world. Science does not know everything, and it
                                              does not have the answer for that question...yet. BUT, on the other
                                              side we have a set of writings from a time in history when
                                              supernatural explanations were quite common and embellishments were
                                              the order of the day. From these writings we design a deity to fill
                                              every hole of every question we cannot presently answer. We can even
                                              design this deity to exist before everything, to conveniently even
                                              exist outside and independent of time and space while being
                                              omnipresent within time-constrained space.

                                              And this explanation of an invisible and apparently reclusive god
                                              somehow stands as THE BEST CANDIDATE??!!
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