Monday, March 18, 2013
More Questions for Atheists
Thought I'd have a shot at the list of questions for atheists on the "Who Is He?" website...
"How do you explain the high degree of design and order in the universe if there is no God?"
Unsupported premise. It has not been established that the universe has a "high degree of design."
"How do you account for the vast archaeological documentation of Biblical stories, places, and people?"
Lots of mythology is based on real people, places or events.
"Since absolutely no Bible prophecy has ever failed (and there are hundreds), how can one realistically remain unconvinced that the Bible is of divine origin?"
Unsupported premise. It has not been established that "no Bible prophecy has ever failed."
"How do you explain David's graphic portrayal of Jesus' death by crucifixion (Psalm 22) 1000 years before Christ lived?"
False premise. Neither Jesus nor crucifixion are mentioned in Psalm 22.
"How do you explain that the prophet Daniel prophesied the exact YEAR when the Christ would be presented as Messiah and also prophesied that the temple would be destroyed afterwards over 500 years in advance (Daniel 9:24-27)?"
False premise. No units of time are given in the passages in Daniel.
"How could any mere human pinpoint the precise birth town of the Messiah seven full centuries before the fact, as did the prophet Micah?"
False premise. The term "Messiah" does not appear in Micah.
"How do you account for the odds (1 in 10 to the 157th power) that even just 48 (of 300) Old Testament prophecies were fulfilled in Jesus Christ?"
Unsupported premise. The given odds are not established.
"How was it possible for the Old Testament prophet Isaiah to have predicted the virgin birth of Jesus (Isaiah 7:14) 700 years before it occurred?"
False premise. The verse refers to someone named Immanuel.
"How can anyone doubt the reliability of Scripture considering the number and the proximity to the originals of its many copied manuscripts?"
Unsupported premise. This information about copied manuscripts has not been established.
"In what sense was Jesus a "good man" if He was lying in His claim to be God?"
Unsupported premise. The existence of Jesus as a real person has not been established.
"If the Bible is not true, why is it so universally regarded as "the Good Book"?"
False premise. Only Christians regard the Bible this way.
"Did you know that the Bible has been the number one bestseller almost every single year since the 1436 invention of the Gutenberg printing press?"
False premise. Best-seller lists did not exist in 1436.
"If God does not exist, then from where comes humanity's universal moral sense?"
It evolved from the need to live together in societies to survive.
"If man is nothing but the random arrangement of molecules, what motivates you to care and to live honorably in the world?"
False premise. A human being's molecular structure is not random.
"Can you explain how personality could have ever evolved from the impersonal, or how order could have ever resulted from chaos?"
I cannot, because I am not an expert in the required fields. However, I could direct the reader to sources on the topics.
"If Jesus' resurrection was faked, why would twelve intelligent men (Jesus' disciples) have been willing to face death for what they knew to be a lie?"
Unsupported premise. The existence and characteristics of the people mentioned in the question have not been established.
"How do you explain the fact that a single, relatively uneducated and virtually untraveled man, dead at age 33, radically changed lives and society to this day?"
Assuming the question refers to Jesus, unsupported premise. The existence of Jesus as a real person has not been established.
"Why have so many of history's greatest thinkers been believers?"
Not enough information to answer; the thinkers in question would need to be specified.
"Have you ever wondered why thousands of intelligent scientists, living and dead, have been men and women of great faith?"
"If time never had a beginning, but rather goes backwards infinitely or has gone through an infinite number of cycles, then how is it possible that we are here today?"
Unsupported premise. Whether or not time had a beginning has not been established.
"How can something as small as a brain understand extremely complicated aspects of the universe, even though it is (supposedly) just a bunch of chemical reactions and electrical signals?"
I am unqualified to answer questions on neuroscience, but I would be happy to direct the reader to sources.
"But at the same time, this brain can’t create another brain like itself, so how can nature, that has no brain, create a brain?"
Unsupported premise. The idea that nature "creates" has not been established.
"Everyone knows Mount Rushmore was the result of intelligent design. Do you think the human body is the result of intelligent design?"
"When you look at a lot of creatures such as zebras, turtles, butterflies, bees, lady bugs, leopards, etc., you will notice amazing color patterns designed into them. Who came up with those?"
Unsupported premise. The idea that they had to be "come up with" by a "who" is unsupported.
"Does nature have a “taste” in colors, and does it know which colors go together nicely?"
"How do you account for the origin of life considering the irreducible complexity of its essential components?"
False premise. The idea of irreducible complexity has been debunked.
"How can the Second Law of Thermodynamics be reconciled with progressive, naturalistic evolutionary theory?"
"How do you reconcile the existence of human intelligence with naturalism and the Law of Entropy?"
Thermodynamic laws and entropy only hold true in closed systems.
"How come there are some things on our planet seem that they are especially designed for us? For example, the 2 most comfortable colors are blue and green , which happen to be the color of the sky and most of the nature around us."
False premise. Those things do not seem designed at all.
"Who chose those colors to be there , before earth even existed?"
Unsupported premise. It has not been established that those things require a "who" to choose them.
"Why does the Bible alone, of all of the world's holy books, contain such detailed prophecies of future events?"
Unsupported premise. It has not been established that anything in the Bible describes a future event.
"Is it absolutely true that "truth is not absolute" or only relatively true that "all things are relative?""
False dichotomy. It has not been established that these are the only two options regarding truth.
"Is it possible that your unbelief in God is actually an unwillingness to submit to Him?"
"Does your present worldview provide you with an adequate sense of meaning and purpose?"
"How do you explain the radically changed lives of so many Christian believers down through history?"
Not enough information to answer; the believers in question would need to be specified.
"Are you aware that every alleged Bible contradiction has been answered in an intelligible and credible manner?"
False premise. They have not.
"What do you say about the hundreds of scholarly books that carefully document the veracity and reliability of the Bible?"
Not enough information to answer; sources would need to be specified.
"Why and how has the Bible survived and even flourished in spite of centuries of worldwide attempts to destroy and ban its message?"
Unsupported premise. The existence of such worldwide attempts has not been established.
"Have you ever considered the fact that Christianity is the only religion whose leader is said to have risen from the dead?"
Unsupported premise. This fact has not been established.
"How do you explain the empty tomb of Jesus in light of all the evidence that has now proven essentially irrefutable for twenty centuries?"
Unsupported premise. Evidence is not provided.
"If Jesus did not actually die and rise from the dead, how could He (in His condition) have circumvented all of the security measures in place at His tomb?"
"If the authorities stole Jesus' body, why? Why would they have perpetrated the very scenario that they most wanted to prevent?"
"If Jesus merely resuscitated in the tomb, how did He deal with the Roman guard posted just outside its entrance?"
Unsupported premise. The historical accuracy of these accounts his not been established.
"How can one realistically discount the testimony of over 500 witnesses to a living Jesus following His crucifixion (see 1 Corinthians 15:6)?"
False premise. The cited passage contains no such testimony.
"If all of Jesus' claims to be God were the result of His own self-delusion, why didn't He show evidence of lunacy in any other areas of His life?"
Unsupported premise. The existence of Jesus as a real person has not been established.
"Is your unbelief in a perfect God possibly the result of a bad experience with an imperfect church or a misunderstanding of the facts, and therefore an unfair rejection of God Himself?"
"How did 35-40 men, spanning 1500 years and living on three separate continents, ever manage to author one unified message, i.e. the Bible?"
False premise. The Bible is not one unified message.
"Because life origins are not observable, verifiable, or falsifiable, how does the theory of "evolution" amount to anything more than just another faith system?"
False premise. Evolution does not describe how life originated, only how it diversified.
"What do you make of all the anthropological studies indicating that even the most remote tribes show some sort of theological awareness?"
If by "theological awareness," you mean belief in some sort of deity, there are evolutionary hypotheses to account for the development of religious beliefs, with varying degrees of support. I can direct the reader to sources if desired.
"If every effect has a cause, then what or who caused the universe?"
Unsupported premise. The idea that the universe is the effect of a cause has not been established.
"How do you explain the thousands of people who have experienced heaven or hell and have come back to tell us about it?"
Unsupported premise. The idea that people have experienced heaven or hell has not been established.
"How do you explain the countless people who have received miracles from God?"
Not enough information to answer. The people and "miracles" in question would need to be specified.
"Is there any evidence that would satisfy you and persuade you to become a believer, or are you just going to believe what you WANT to believe?"
I would absolutely believe in any god if compelling evidence could be provided.