Sunday, September 28, 2014

Door Number Two: The Existence of Evil is the Most Powerful Argument

It’s All About Religion

In my previous post I discussed David Barash’s op-ed piece in the New York Times reviewing the usual religious beliefs that motivate evolutionary thinking. Barash’s piece is not peculiar, it is standard evolutionary reasoning. For instance, another evolution professor, Jerry Coyne, responded today, in support of Barash’s arguments. Coyne explains that he agrees with Barash “100%” and adds a few additional comments of his own.

First, Coyne echoes Barash’s non scientific claim that evolution explains how the wonders of the biological world evolved spontaneously. Coyne writes:

The argument from complexity. As we all know, evolution dispelled this most powerful argument for God when Darwin showed that “design-like” features could arise from a purely naturalistic process. 

There’s only one problem. That is a lie. What Coyne writes here is not an exaggeration, not a controversial point, not a questionable point, not an unsupported suggestion. There simply is no nice way to put it—this is a bald faced lie, period.

Darwin showed no such thing. That is not my opinion. I’d be delighted to tell you Darwin and the evolutionists have made such a discovery. How cool that would be. But anyone even remotely familiar with Darwin’s work knows that this just didn’t happen. Not even close. Coyne’s claim is just laughable.

But the more important part of Coyne’s response is the religious part. Here, again, he supports Barash fully. Coyne writes:

The existence of evil. This, to me, is the most powerful of Barash’s arguments for incompatibility between science and religion. Theists must perforce explain evil—both “moral” evil (humans doing bad things to other humans) and “natural” evil (diseases like childhood cancer, earthquakes, and other stuff that kills innocent people)—as part of God’s plan. There’s no easy way to reconcile these with a loving and all-powerful god, though the entire discipline of theodicy is devoted to the effort. I haven’t yet seen a successful reconciliation, and theists know, deep in their hearts, that the problem remains. But such “evils” are, as Barash explains, easily understandable in a naturalistic universe: they’re an inevitable result of either evolution, physics, or geology.

No easy way to reconcile the world’s evils with a loving and all-powerful god (Coyne forgot the all-knowing part)? Coyne obviously has strong religious beliefs that drive his thinking. Imagine that you too believed what Coyne believes. Then of course you would be an evolutionist.

This religious theory drives evolutionists such as Coyne to abuse science (as we saw above). But of course there is nothing new here. As we have discussed before, Coyne elaborates on his religious views (that is before he denied them) in his book, Why Evolution is True. It’s all about evil and dysteleology and how this world would never have been intended by any creator or designer.

Should we laugh or should we cry. Evolutionist are so drunk with their own metaphysics they can’t even see it. They are oblivious to their own shtick.

Religion drives science, and it matters.

72 comments:

  1. Coyne should learn about Christianity in particular before attempting to negate God and continue to embarrass himself. Evil is easily explained: When we exert our free will and choose something that goes against God's will, evil ensues. In other words: evil is the absence of God's will just as darkness is the absence of light.

    It's very telling to see how desperate atheists have become attempting to maintain their religious views.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. nv,
      Evil is easily explained: When we exert our free will and choose something that goes against God's will, evil ensues


      Too bad the victims of evil are not afforded the same range of choices as God allows the evil doers

      Delete
    2. veli:
      Too bad the victims of evil are not afforded the same range of choices as God allows the evil doers


      for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

      Romans 3:23

      We're ALL guilty of committing acts of evil at times, so there are no true victims...we're all guilty which is why Christ came to save us from our sins.

      Delete
    3. nv:
      We're ALL guilty of committing acts of evil at times, so there are no true victims...we're all guilty which is why Christ came to save us from our sins.


      Yes ,I realize that is the company line,but somehow it is hard to believe that a two year old is capable of sin.

      Delete
    4. "Yes ,I realize that is the company line,but somehow it is hard to believe that a two year old is capable of sin."

      Perhaps have some children. Two year old have been found to be disobedient to parents for almost as long as their has been two years olds

      Delete
    5. "somehow it is hard to believe that a two year old is capable of sin."

      This is likely the funniest statement I have possibly heard in my ENTIRE life. Obviously this man/woman does not have kids. Every person on alive is a sinner. Kids, whose hearts largely remain unchanged to the Gospel, are chief sinners! The 2 year old who cries for attention, hits his sister, and has fits of rage is guess what......a sinner!

      Delete
    6. Darren:
      This is likely the funniest statement I have possibly heard in my ENTIRE life. Obviously this man/woman does not have kids. Every person on alive is a sinner. Kids, whose hearts largely remain unchanged to the Gospel, are chief sinners!


      An excellent example of objective morality. So you not condemned because what you do but who you are.

      Elijah:
      Perhaps have some children. Two year old have been found to be disobedient to parents for almost as long as their has been two years olds


      Yikes! You think a two year old has the ability to make moral decisions? God is offended by something a two year old does? Your God needs to seriously lighten up?

      Delete
    7. pedant,

      Their god is insane.


      Seems like a reasonable conclusion,maybe eternity eventually takes a toll.

      Delete
    8. "So you not condemned because what you do but who you are."

      It's who you are that makes you do what you do.

      "Yikes! You think a two year old has the ability to make moral decisions?"

      Do you think a two year old has the ability to make decisions?

      "God is offended by something a two year old does? Your God needs to seriously lighten up?"

      John 9:41 Romans 5:13

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    9. John,

      It's who you are that makes you do what you do.


      Probably,but if you believe free will exists then you should have to opportunity to do it before being judged guilty.

      Do you think a two year old has the ability to make decisions?

      Moral decisions,absolutely not.

      Delete
    10. "Yikes! You think a two year old has the ability to make moral decisions? God is offended by something a two year old does? Your God needs to seriously lighten up? "

      As usual Vel idiocy suits you well. I recognized my two year old child being disobedient without being offended. perhaps crack a bible? God has always had systems in place that allowed for forgiveness. He doesn't need to lighten up. Its only when people continue sinning and do not avail themselves of those systems that they endure punishment.

      As for your pure laugher that two year olds can't make moral decisons...what can I say? thanks for making it crystal clear to all that you have no idea about having children and are not a parent but are waxing in joyous ignorance

      As the saying goes - ignorance is bliss :)

      Delete
    11. "Do you think a two year old has the ability to make decisions?

      Moral decisions,absolutely not. "

      John you will have to forgive Vel's VAST ignorance (you will get used to it). he obviously has not seen children at play (or interacting with siblings) who make such decisions all the time. either that or he will opine that love, hate selfishness sympathy are not moral decisions to save face on his latest blunder.

      Delete
    12. V: Too bad the victims of evil are not afforded the same range of choices as God allows the evil doers

      J: They do have the same range of choices if they have the same volitional capacity. Not rocket science.

      Delete
  2. If the Bible said that God was bad, then there would beno problem. Evil doesn't contradict God's existance. It only seems to contradict conventional theology, that holds that God is Good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It [evil] only seems to contradict conventional theology, that holds that God is Good.

      Why is that true?

      Delete
    2. I said seems to contradict. Doesn't mean it really does.

      Delete
    3. "It only seems to contradict conventional theology, that holds that God is Good."

      How so? Your "seems" is not consistent with the majority "seems" today or the historical "seems" of the last several thousands of years by the millions who saw no contradiction.

      Bad theologically is doing what God has commanded us not to. How in the world does my children disobeying me make my goodness inconsistent?

      Delete
  3. If their theory of origins is correct, they should not speak of evil. A purely material world knows nothing of evil.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Correct, there would be no legitimate basis for judging what evil was or if it existed if Evolution is true. By what authority would they do so ? Dirt said so ? Chemicals say so ? and so forth.

      Delete
    2. So Isis by the authority of their God,is moral?

      Delete
    3. a) Their god is thr true God and then they are moral.
      b) Their god it is not a true god, and there is no a true god., the they are chemicals automatons reacting according physical laws and the they are neither moral nor inmoral.
      c) Their god it is not the true God but a true God exists and the their probably are inmoral.

      Pick your choice.


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    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  4. This was the only thing worth responding to down below and I am not of a mind to dig back and forth at finding the section where posts were originally made. So I'll post up here. This is the only one worth responding to.

    Lance Peckinpah: just how do you believe your god Jesus started the entire evolutionary experience

    Zach (Lee Allan Croteau) "We never made such a claim."

    This is very strange. Back in the early 2000s you were a different story on those Yahoo discussion boards and in fact I remember very well in 2004 or 2005 you created a website for Jesus and having Googled it once again I came up with the same website which is still owned by you, but apparently run by your wife or live in girl friend Julie Reeves. No biggie, seems like a nice gal. The site seems to have radically changed it's original content which was wholly dedicated to Dr Gene Scott of which both of you were card carrying members, but now it's simply Jesus poetry. Here is the website today:

    http://watchforhim.com/

    It is registered to your address as are all the other Zachriel websites which were for whatever reason moved from your family's Timberville Electronics business location to your personal residence in Woodstock Virginia. Oddly enough in Googling, I found that his is also the same address for which you personally are listed for filing a personal bankruptcy which is a matter of public record on the internet , so the Jesus website is clearly your website. So denying your position of being a Theistic Evolutionist is disingenuous. It makes any discussion nothing more than another silly game, for which you appear to have generous amounts of time engaging in and devoting to, but I have none. The response would be nothing but time wasting, as is evident from viewing and reading the responses from others here.

    So I'll beg off and refrain from the game

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You seem to be conflating the publisher with ownership of the content. In any case, you don't seem to be interested in the topic. We wish you the best.

      Delete
    2. Okay, so you must be the older boy John Croteau. I sincerely hope you don't treat your sister-in-law with the disdain as some of these [admittedly limited knowledge] folks here. On further view, she doesn't seem like someone who limited education, quite the opposite. She quite frankly looks extremely intelligent and successful, even though I may not share any of her views either.

      Delete
  5. Dr Hunter:

    I’d be delighted to tell you Darwin and the evolutionists have made such a discovery. (That the complexity of life can arise without God being the proximate cause)How cool that would be.


    Let's see how cool you think it would be

    Eugenics, abortion and population control are, unfortunately, by no means the end of evolution’s deconstructionism. Evolution does away with law, common sense and morality.

    So you would be delighted if evolution was true. Big fan of genocide are you?

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  6. Velik,
    "So you would be delighted if evolution was true. Big fan of genocide are you?"

    That's not what he stated at all. If evolution is a true fact, then there is no way to morally judge anything as being right or wrong. By what authority would one do so and why would it be true, since truth is also another one of those fuzzy terms under the power of evolution being a fact ? There is no longer any rock solid basis for true morality on any matter. But that is not hard to understand unless it places an unflattering light on one's chosen worldview publicly.

    The only thing the Theory of Evolution did was to legitimize such behaviors by it's very main stream hard core affirmations. Evolution also offered a means of technological innovation to streamline the efficiency with which acts as you described may be carried out to their conclusions. Such acts as performing the purpose of genocide. Survival of the fittest and other evolutionary affirmations cannot be erased from the history books. They did have a real effect on mankind from it's beginning. Incredibly, the science world since that old archaic understanding has been finding out that Nature, when allowed to remain in a pristine state is more mutually cooperative than violent and competitive.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. lance,
      That's not what he stated at all. If evolution is a true fact,

      He said he would be delighted if evolution was true, evolution which causes genocide.

      then there is no way to morally judge anything as being right or wrong

      That is committing the same fallacy that Dr Hunter is accusing the evolutionists of, claiming to know what and how God chooses to create.

      By what authority would one do so and why would it be true, since truth is also another one of those fuzzy terms under the power of evolution being a fact

      Truth is always conditional for beings with finite knowledge,that is why religions invoke faith. Believing without seeing.

      That being the case, evolution by nature forces would serve that goal better than creation ex nihilo.

      Delete
    2. Velik, "That is committing the same fallacy that Dr Hunter is accusing the evolutionists of, claiming to know what and how God chooses to create. "

      I've never read him that way. He may have beliefs in God, but I don't recall him ever insisting his knows how his God went about performing creation, I believe he has admitted this in the past.

      Velik, "Truth is always conditional for beings with finite knowledge,that is why religions invoke faith. Believing without seeing."

      Of course the conventional religious have faith, but so do the vast amount of evolutionists I work around and with. I have no problem with "Faith", but what I hate is blind faith and it cuts equally against both Camps here.

      Velik, "That being the case, evolution by nature forces would serve that goal better than creation ex nihilo."

      Yes, I can see random acts of peace and unity breaking out everywhere around the globe as a result. Personally I am not political, nor have I ever been. The problem with this subject matter is that both sides are politically and ideological driven for obtaining control. I generally live a quiet life, although it becomes disturbed when I see idiocy with regards land management and lack of knowledge regarding the rebuilding of ecosystems. Unlike the owner of this blog and his followers, I do believe in a climate change and that it is the direct result of human mismanagement of the Earth and it's natural resources. I am interested Earth's various mechanisms and functions when it comes to environment. I run up against or butt heads with both sides as both sides are shackled to the conventional thinking within their own groups, with each one breaking away from their commitments for fear they will alienate their peers. It's going to be interesting how things develop around the globe shortly. I am already seeing things in nature which may be going beyond the point of no return and yes, humans have done this. It's also going to be interesting how this idea or proposal below develops:

      Peres pitches pope 'UN of religions' to battle terrorism

      So retired Israeli president meets the leader of the Catholic Church in Rome and suggests that religion is the trigger for world conflicts. But he proposes that the present United Nations has been a failure, but that a United Nations of Religions could be a success. Hardly, I wholeheartedly disagree, but it will be interesting on the world scene how this all plays out. Frankly it may be to their end. But we'll see.

      Delete
    3. velikovskys,

      Lance: "If evolution is true then there is no way to morally judge anything as being right or wrong"

      Vel: "That is committing the same fallacy that Dr Hunter is accusing the evolutionists of, claiming to know what and how God chooses to create."

      How do you arrive at that conclusion? The two are not even remotely connected.

      Lance: "By what authority would one do so and why would it be true, since truth is also another one of those fuzzy terms under the power of evolution being a fact"

      Vel: "Truth is always conditional for beings with finite knowledge,that is why religions invoke faith. Believing without seeing."

      Faith is not about believing without seeing. That is a common misrepresentation of the nature faith constantly thrown about by evolutionists. Faith is about putting your trust in that which you have observed, and that which you have experienced. That is why you practice faith every time you step onto an elevator, or board an airplane. If you had never observed the safe operation of either an elevator or an airplane, your belief that boarding them would not result in personal harm would be based on nothing more than blind chance, it would certainly not be based on faith.

      Vel: "That being the case, evolution by nature forces would serve that goal better than creation ex nihilo."

      Palpable nonsense. The whole basis of evolutionary thought is randomness and blind, uncaring, purposeless actions. In what way is that even remotely conceivable as a better process than directed, purposeful creation?

      Delete
    4. I've never read him that way. He may have beliefs in God,
      There is no " may " about it.

      butt I don't recall him ever insisting his knows how his God went about performing creation

      Apparently he only has opinions about how He wouldn't. Which is the same fallacy he points out in Coyne, his bête noire.

      I believe he has admitted this in the past.

      This was my point, merely claiming to be impartial does not make one that way. " I have come to bury Caesar, not praise him ".

      Claiming on one hand to be delighted if evolution proved to true,while on the other listing the evil that evolution causes, exposes his impartiality as a rhetoric device. If not ,his fondness for genocide.

      Of course the conventional religious have faith,
      but so do the vast amount of evolutionists I work around and with


      That is Dr Hunter's point, to me it seems insulting to compare the faith one has in God with the faith that the assumption of naturalistic methodology is sound. Of course in addition one is not falsifiable and the other is.

      Yes, I can see random acts of peace and unity breaking out everywhere around the globe as a result

      Hardly, science is a tool. It can be used to save lives or take them more efficiently. My point is more philosophical. Natural causes seem a more elegant solution than the brute force of creation ex nihilo. After all, what is the rush?

      Delete
    5. Vel:

      That is Dr Hunter's point, to me it seems insulting to compare the faith one has in God with the faith that the assumption of naturalistic methodology is sound.

      That's quite a mischaracterization.

      Delete
    6. DrHunter
      That's quite a mischaracterization


      I am not worthy to touch the hem of your garment

      "Jones later reminisced about the trial, explaining that “I understood the general theme. I’d seen Inherit the Wind"

      Seriously how so? I certainly think that it is trivializing the qualitative difference between a religious experience and a pragmatic assumption. That is why I always thought Pascal's Wager wouldn't help on Judgement Day.

      That is what confuses me, you keep equating everything to religion.

      Other than that, once again may I express my admiration for your dedication to free and open speech, as well as your thought provoking posts. Thanks.

      Delete
    7. Please disambiguate "faith."

      Delete
    8. Hey Nic, nice to see you about.

      Lance: "If evolution is true then there is no way to morally judge anything as being right or wrong"

      Vel: "That is committing the same fallacy that Dr Hunter is accusing the evolutionists of, claiming to know what and how God chooses to create."

      Nic :How do you arrive at that conclusion? The two are not even remotely connected


      I disagree, Lance's point is that if evolution is true God does not exist(" no way to judge anything right or wrong". )

      Just as it is a fallacy to argue "what"an omniscient would choose to design, it is a fallacy to argue "how"an omniscient God would design it. If we cannot know one,we cannot know the other.


      Faith is not about believing without seeing. That is a common misrepresentation of the nature faith constantly thrown about by evolutionists.


      Faith is believing without seeing, your believe Jesus is the Incarnation. You did not observe Jesus to make that decision, at best your relied on others who relied on others who relied on others.

      Faith is about putting your trust in that which you have observed, and that which you have experienced. That is why you practice faith every time you step onto an elevator, or board an airplane.

      True, but have you observed every part of that plane?

      Palpable nonsense. The whole basis of evolutionary thought is randomness and blind, uncaring, purposeless actions. In what way is that even remotely conceivable as a better process than directed, purposeful creation?

      Even if evolution is true God is still the ultimate cause of your existence, are you saying that you can judge that His methods as uncaring? You do not judge Him as uncaring for letting a child die in excruciating pain,do you?

      The God that choose a humble working man as his Incarnation does not seem like a God that would resort to flashy displays power when less disruptive methods could suffice. Now that would be complexity that only a God could achieve,knowing the result of billions of rolls of the dice. Of course that is merely my opinion

      Delete

    9. Pedant
      Please disambiguate "faith."


      When the data runs out and you are not ready to stop.

      Delete
    10. " You did not observe Jesus to make that decision, at best your relied on others who relied on others who relied on others."

      :) ummm so you take the existence of Julius Caesar on faith then?

      Historians everywhere groan as Vel redefines history as based on faith and religious in nature.

      Delete
    11. "Palpable nonsense. The whole basis of evolutionary thought is randomness and blind, uncaring, purposeless actions."

      and hence why your previous claim natural methodology is falsifiable is in practice quite in error. puposelessness is a subjective opinion which in any infinite reality can already be logically falsified but you would no doubt reject that - hence your own brand is unfalsifiable despite your claims.

      Apparently you deal in more faith that n us all.

      Delete
    12. Elijah,
      and hence why your previous claim natural methodology is falsifiable is in practice quite in error.


      First NM is an assumption, it is an acknowledgement of the limitations of science, it is falsified if you can show how science can work without being constrained by nature.

      puposelessness is a subjective opinion

      Of course, but so is purpose and how that purpose is achieved

      which in any infinite reality can already be logically falsified

      Not sure what you mean, what do we know and how do we know it about infinite reality that could allow us to falsify a particular version or all versions?

      but you would no doubt reject that hence your own brand is unfalsifiable despite your claims.

      Again your assumption is wrong, I don't reject that which I don't understand but I do require some evidence that what you claim is true

      Apparently you deal in more faith that n us all.

      You would think just by blind luck you would be right more often.

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  7. I'm wondering how atheists and naturalists explain all the gratuitous good in the world. For example, people enjoy lokking at sunsets. Why? Could it be just a kindness form the Creator? If unnecessary evil menas evolution, then unnecessarty good should mean Creation.

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    1. I can't speak for all atheists and naturalists but I explain all the good and evil in the world in the same way I explain all the red in the world. It exists only in our minds.

      Red isn't a property of a tomato, for example. The tomato's skin reflects a narrow band of wavelengths from the electromagnetic spectrum. Those are represented as red in our mental model of external reality.

      Similarly, good and evil are evaluations or judgments we make about the behavior of other people.and they depend on circumstance. A man shoots another man dead. That might be good or evil. It's evil if the killing was committed during a robbery or just for the hell of it. It's good if it was done to save one's own life or the life of another, Same act. someone is just as dead at the end of it, but one is good and one is evil. Which is which is a judgment we make about it and nothing more.

      Delete
    2. "Similarly, good and evil are evaluations or judgments we make about the behavior of other people.and they depend on circumstance."

      Circular reasoning and ducking and dodging never made for a good rebuttal. Evil and good are value judgements and no one said otherwise (that the definition) but that hardly helps a materialist who believes that NOTHING exists but "material". To them a judgment IS a precise arrangement of "materials". Its a physical state or a physical mind.

      and as such they need to explain why it is that a physical state of faith is beneficial in a placebo effect

      why a physical mental state of monogamy is generally healthier than promiscuity.

      Why hate and uncontrolled anger that works well for a lion is bad for the health of a human being

      Why it is that the physical body (and collective culture) seems to favor this physical state of a particular kind of yes.....morality.

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    3. Elijah2012 Evil and good are value judgements and no one said otherwise (that the definition) but that hardly helps a materialist who believes that NOTHING exists but "material". To them a judgment IS a precise arrangement of "materials". Its a physical state or a physical mind.

      There are plenty who believe that evil is a physical entity or force which resides out there somewhere in the physical world.

      If "material" is taken to encompass both matter and energy and all permutations thereof then, yes, I am a materialist. There are states or arrangements of matter and energy which correspond to "judgments". The exact ontology of a 'judgment" or "moral belief", which appears to exist nowhere but in the mind of an intelligent being such as ourselves, is debatable. The problem for immaterialists is showing that anything immaterial exists at all in any meaningful sense.

      and as such they need to explain why it is that a physical state of faith is beneficial in a placebo effect

      The placebo effect is a real effect. It's not hard to imagine that physical processes which are functioning smoothly and efficiently can promote such conditions elsewhere in a system or allow more resources to be allocated to areas in need of repair.

      why a physical mental state of monogamy is generally healthier than promiscuity.

      Only one mother-in-law. Much less stressful.

      Why hate and uncontrolled anger that works well for a lion is bad for the health of a human being

      Actually, it's hunger in a lion which is bad for the health of a human being.

      Whether big cats feel the same emotions as human beings is another debatable question but I doubt very much that it's hate and uncontrolled anger that drives them to hunt.

      Hate and uncontrolled anger are strong emotions generated in response to extreme stressors. They are costly to maintain for any length of time. When you hear of victims, or parents of victims, of a terrible crime forgiving the offender, it may be couched in moral terms but if you look a little deeper you will often find some reference to the fact that living with extreme anger and hatred had become unbearable for them. The only way to relieve themselves of that terrible burden was to forgive the perpetrator. It usually has little to do with whether the offender is actually entitled to such forgiveness.

      Why it is that the physical body (and collective culture) seems to favor this physical state of a particular kind of yes.....morality.

      It promotes social cohesion by trying to ensure that the rights and well-being of every member of that society are respected and protected. that is materially advantageous in all sorts of ways.

      Delete
  8. Yes, evil is easily explained, but first you have to understand thee purpose of life.

    If you're an atheist there is no purpose. You live, or you die, it doesn't make any difference.

    If you're a Christian Jesus is very clear about the purpose of life. His entire ministry was to save souls to go to heaven.

    Now how many souls did God intend to create. Obviously more than two. In fact billions. And how are we to get to a perfect, immortal world? Obviously we have to leave earth. In other words we must die.

    Therefore death is an integral part of God's plan to bring our souls to heaven. Death is also necessary if there is to be more than one generation.

    Therefore death is essential to God's plan for salvation. Death is by far the strongest form of suffering. There are many other purposes for suffering. But the greatest suffering is necessary for the salvation of mankind.

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  9. Evolution's claim that it destroyed design and so complexity is wrong because complexity is always at a complex level regardless of any biological entity at any point in its, "evolution'.
    How is complexity, indeed the source for mans idea of God(s) , affected by designs in nature being documented in their changing?
    Has complexity been explained by evolution at any level of its sophistication?
    NO!

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  10. Post Plantinga's free will defense . . . ~ 40 years ago now, the deductive problem of evil has been outdated and the inductive one is down to manageable proportions -- cf a 101 summary here for a quick first glance. And, always, the very fact of the objectionable nature of evil is actually evidence for God. Indeed, if evil ought not to be -- the heartcry of the protest-atheist -- this implies that ought is binding, pointing to a solution to the IS-OUGHT gap problem. That can only lie at world root level. There is, after centuries but one serious candidate, the inherently good Creator God who is a maximally great and necessary being, the source and sustainer of reality.

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    1. Evil can't be real if morals are relative. Evil is real, though. That's why people object to it. Therefore, objective moral standards must exist as well.

      Relative and subjective are not the same, after all which objective morality to adopt is a subjective choice

      This discovery invites certain questions. Where do morals come from and why do they seem to apply only to human beings?

      The most logical answer is from human beings.

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    2. VS, that is exactly the most dangerously wrong answer. It is equal to might and manipulation make 'right,' 'rights,' 'good' and truth.' " Nihilism in one word. The ghosts of 100 million victims over the past century moan out a warning to you on where that ends.

      Human beings are morally governed creatures of unalienable dignity and value, which is where rights come from. But, to properly have a right is to be in the right . . . as opposed to, to have enough power, trickery and ruthlessness to get one's way.

      OUGHT, the root of moral governance is real and it points to the inherent nature of the very root of being.

      Beware of sophistry that leads you away from that.

      Too many lessons have been paid for with too much blood to forget that.

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    3. Here is Plato's warning against nihilism in The Laws Bk X:

      >>Ath. . . . [The avant garde philosophers and poets, c. 360 BC] say that . . . all that is in the heaven, as well as animals and all plants, and all the seasons come from these elements, not by the action of mind, as they say, or of any God, or from art, but as I was saying, by nature and chance only . . . .

      [Thus, they hold] that the principles of justice have no existence at all in nature, but that mankind are always disputing about them and altering them; and that the alterations which are made by art and by law have no basis in nature, but are of authority for the moment and at the time at which they are made.- [ --> Relativism, too, is not new; complete with its radical amorality rooted in a worldview that has no foundational IS that can ground OUGHT.] These, my friends, are the sayings of wise men, poets and prose writers, which find a way into the minds of youth. They are told by them that the highest right is might [ --> Evolutionary materialism leads to the promotion of amorality], and in this way the young fall into impieties, under the idea that the Gods are not such as the law bids them imagine; and hence arise factions [ --> Evolutionary materialism-motivated amorality "naturally" leads to continual contentions and power struggles], these philosophers inviting them to lead a true life according to nature, that is,to live in real dominion over others [ --> such amoral factions, if they gain power, "naturally" tend towards ruthless tyranny], and not in legal subjection to them. >>

      We stand warned, for 2350 years and counting.

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    4. GEM,
      "Here is Plato's warning against nihilism in The Laws Bk X"
      "We stand warned, for 2350 years and counting."
      ----------

      It's odd that you would quote this Pagan Philosopher as opposed to your own holy book [assuming the Bible] which explains where the controversy started, how human independence would play out through mankind's various forms of constitutions, philosophies, etc and where things would end up. Most of the above side tracks I would assume from your own book.

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    5. Lance, that old pagan philosopher saw a lot right, and I deeply respect him.He was one of the greatest minds of all time and we should respect him -- never mind the usual warts and feet of clay. I do not have to agree with everything to acknowledge many things. And BTW, if you chance to read Acts 17 on the apostle Paul's visit to Athens, you will see that he also did much the same. (I note the passage in The Laws cited, is a place where Plato saw astonishingly deeply and clearly on a great many things; never mind the things he did not get quite right.) I also have a deep respect for the lessons of history, something that today we too often despise, forgetting the warnings about what happens when we forget them and the price paid for them. It may help you to know one of my scientific heroes was a lifelong agnostic, Sir Fred Hoyle. KF

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    6. VS, that is exactly the most dangerously wrong answer. It is equal to might and manipulation make 'right,' 'rights,' 'good' and truth.' " Nihilism in one word. The ghosts of 100 million victims over the past century moan out a warning to you on where that ends.

      A bit overwrought,no? Of course people created morals, maybe thru self evident truths maybe trial and error, game theory or as a means of control.

      The problem with direct God to man communication is that without some independent means of determining morality it becomes completely relativistic, divine authority supports every moral system no matter how contradictory they are.


      Human beings are morally governed creatures of unalienable dignity and value, which is where rights come from.


      So we have rights because we choose to be morally governed? Since we have examples of radically differing moral choices, our inalienable rights are likewise radically differing.

      Perhaps, as my Jesuit overlords used to say, you can share with the class how a human chooses which ,if any, is the true morality without being a subjective choice?


      Beware of sophistry that leads you away from that.

      Too many lessons have been paid for with too much blood to forget that.


      No idea what you mean, but shedding other people's blood is often viewed as moral.

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  11. I LOVE when atheists attempt to talk about evil or morality

    Nothing betrays their lack of logic, the sublime diversity of their circular reasoning and their staggering ignorance of theism that they claim to logically devastate.

    Evil has not been a problem for theism. ever. The only reason atheist think so is because they run from the word "sin". They hate the very idea that their own actions could be labelled sin. They cringe at the idea that those actions might have consequences both individually and corporately to humans in general.

    which of the major world religions has a problem explaining the nature of sin and judgement/consequence? none. Sin is as basic to Christianity and the reason for Christ as it gets. So for Them to claim that there is no explanation for evil comes close and I'd say crosses the line of deliberately lying. Its one thing to not want to deal with a tenet of theism but its an entirely other thing to claim what you wish to avoid does not exist. That Is just the "logic" of dishonesty

    at best it just shows their commitment to play intellectual ostrich.

    Meanwhile where is the explanation for an objective "evil" without an objective good and righteous? Where has that been scientifically deduced by the observance of natural processes? Atheists have failed over and over again to make any compelling argument that does not involve begging that religion and theism is not needed for an objective "right". Animals kill other animals for their own gratification (food,sex, dominance) and yet the evolutionary atheist claims that good is objective and determined sans any God the instant we arrived at the human species survival of the organism be damned.

    Theres is the totally failed logic and shows their irrationality. generally smart people avoid discussions that leads to the devastation of their own glass house.

    I wouldn't have time to get into the rich diversity of circular reasoning imbedded in their arguments regarding morality. the fact that atheists see life and death as the end all be all and then impute that finality into their arguments against God and theism that does not or the fact that people who claim logic is what leads to atheism and emotion to religion claiming an emotional argument as their best evidence.

    These are the things that would make long books about atheists or beg that they take the couch for long hours at their psychiatrist's office.

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    1. Elijah2012:

      Do you realize that there are thousands of gods?

      Does one have to believe in all of them to avoid being an atheist?

      Or does one have to disbelieve only in your favorite god to qualify?

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    2. As has already been pointed out, there's a whole branch of theology, namely theodicy, devoted to trying to explain the existence of evil. It's a problem for religion alright.

      The other thing you've got the wrong way round is objective god or evil or morality. It's not atheists claiming that, it's believers.

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    3. Evil is not a problem for religions. How could God judge us if we lived in a perfect world? What would be the point of science in a perfect world?

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    4. Joe,

      Evil is not a problem for religions. How could God judge us if we lived in a perfect world? What would be the point of science in a perfect world?


      Why does God need to judge us?

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    5. Ian,

      "As has already been pointed out, there's a whole branch of theology, namely theodicy, devoted to trying to explain the existence of evil. It's a problem for religion alright."

      Granted, evil is a problem for some religious people, including some Christians, and indeed it is a problem for some religions in general. That does not mean however, that the reality of evil is a problem for Christianity.

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    6. Joe,

      Why are you asking me?


      I guess I thought you might actually have a reason for what you said, apologies.

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    7. "As has already been pointed out, there's a whole branch of theology, namely theodicy, devoted to trying to explain the existence of evil. It's a problem for religion alright."

      Ian try to apply some basic logic. theology has a whole branch called soteriology does that mean salvation is a problem for all religion also? tsk tsk

      If you share the perspective that evil is some big problem for Christianity then you share in the desperation that Cornelius pointed to. What can be more desperate than an atheist claiming a theological argument is one of their greatest points?

      I know of no Bible believer that has any issue with evil and its existence . There have been some questioning as to why Christians suffer at times but since the book specifically tells us in this life we will have troubles it is nowhere near a problem as you would like to fantasize it is.

      "The other thing you've got the wrong way round is objective god or evil or morality. It's not atheists claiming that, it's believers."

      Yes of course so Evil and its nonexistence is a problem for religions. Mental pretzel twisting classes must be going well at your local atheist chapter.

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    8. "Does one have to believe in all of them to avoid being an atheist?"

      Perhaps consult a dictionary on the meaning of the word -"atheist"?

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    9. "Why are you asking me? "

      I think its obvious Joe. Your response showed the foolishness of claiming that all religions have an issue with existence evil and he wants to move the goal post to the question of judgment to dodge admitting the blunder he made on the issue of evil.

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    10. Elijah,

      I think its obvious Joe. Your response showed the foolishness of claiming that all religions have an issue with existence evil


      Elijah, but I never said that religions have a issue with evil, the presence of evil is what religion is supposed to explain. It is the raison de être.

      My question was about Joe's claim is that in a perfect world God would not be able to judge man, I was just wondering why God needs to judge man on earth.


      and he wants to move the goal post to the question of judgment to dodge admitting the blunder he made on the issue of evil.

      Sorry,again what seems obvious to you is incorrect.But if Joe is right God needs evil to exist to accomplish his goal of judgement.

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  13. @ Cornelius Hunter and Gordon Mullings

    I'm surprised to see no condemnation from either of you at the odious example of "outing" I see upthread.

    Especially @ Gordon

    Do you not feel open to the charge of hypocrisy?

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    1. I have something to say about that- Thank you, Lance

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    2. Alan Fox, it should interest you to know that your so called friend Zachriel whom you have called by a first name basis @John" on your own blog pages where you set up those silly debates between Zachriel and the user JoeG was who I said he was in the beginning, Lee Allan Croteau, John's brother. Lee Croteau was the user who originally set up those Google-Yahoo Discussion forms for TalkOrigins back in 2000 through 2008.

      But here is the breaking news now. John Asa Croteau III whose name was once on all those website addresses like zachriel.com is now dead. He died recently on December 7, 2014. Frankly that is sad and my condolences to the family, but the reason I ask Lee Croteau [Zachriel] to explain his Theistic Evolutionist beliefs and how he thought Jesus got the evolution ball rolling is because his entire family are holy roller Jesus Christ religionists from way back. But he deliberately denied this. Yet his wife who uses her own name , "Julie Reeves", over on her Facebook page along with friends spoke about how John was now in Heaven with John Croteau Sr. So I asked if he makes fun of and belittles the family and friends around him the way he does here on Cornelius blog ? He went silent. It speaks volumes as to his hypocrisy and your hypocrisy as to outing people out since you and the others of your following have outed JoeG over and over again repeatedly over the years.

      You should also know Lee Croteau works at VBS Mortgage as some type of Mortgage advising expert. Some expert, in 2011 he filed backruptcy listed at his residence where all the Zachriel and associated websites are registered. This makes sense of why his wife uses her own name and why Zachriel was hitting hard all the various rightwing forums blaming their economic policies for the country's financial woes. Apparently it hit closer to home than that. This hypocrisy just never ends.

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  14. AF, thanks for alerting me to the dirty tactics resorted to since I came by -- one of the disadvantages of a threaded comment box is disintegration of the discussion. And, it being known that I have requested -- for the sake of my email etc -- that my handle be used rather than my name [I cannot speak for others and their desires, but I do not normally speak of anyone online by name, one reason to use initials and the like), this reveals the disrespect and nihilism problems I pointed out. The misbehaviour and disrespect instead of dealing with serious matters speak loud volumes of warning as to what such factions would do if they were to control levers of power in a state. Ironically, right now one of the complaints being forcibly put to me about the new Premier here (a Christian gentleman) is that he is too soft. Speaks volumes. And, AF, kindly refrain from my name in future. KF

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    1. Well, then, attend to it. You will not be missed here.

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