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Burden of Proof In the God v No God Debate
Religion

tggdan3
May 22, 2007
23 votes
13 debaters
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10
The Burden of Proof is on people who say there is no god


jahbuh
May 22, 2007
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

Yes there are hundreds of possibilities but only one makes the most sense. Try explaining the big bang theory and why another one hasn't happened or how an ape that still exists in our present world also morphed into a man. Makes more sense that a single being greater than all beings created all things. AMEN

 
rhys
May 23, 2007
1 convinced
Rebuttal
i don't HAVE to prove that God exists and you don't HAVE to prove that he dosen't exist.

The Burden of proof belongs to whomever decides to take it upon themselves! the reasoning that one side of an "argument" HAS to present proof is ridiculous. mainly because it isn't an argument. You can believe what you believe and i can believe what i believe.

We'll all discover the truth after we die.



 
helpme
May 24, 2007
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Even those who are not persuaded by Christianity often have great respect for Jesus. Among those who reject the idea that Jesus was God incarnate, there are many who are nevertheless followers of him to some degree. “Jesus was a great moral teacher”, some say, “but he wasn’t God”. According to this view, Jesus is to be followed as a great human being, but not as a divine one.

The first thing that we might say about Jesus is that his claims were false and he knew it, in which case he was a liar. If Jesus did not believe that his claims about himself were true, then when he made those claims he was lying.

Jesus’ claims about himself were so central to his teachings, though, that if they were lies then he can hardly be deemed a great teacher. If Jesus set out to systematically deceive people about who he was and how their sins were to be dealt with, then he was among the worst teachers that have ever walked the earth.

The second thing that we might say about Jesus is that his claims were false and he didn’t know it, in which case he was a lunatic. If Jesus believed that his claims about himself were true, and they weren’t, then he was a delusional egomaniac. If an ordinary person believes himself to be God incarnate, then that person is, put quite simply, insane.

Again, if this were the case, if Jesus taught that this is who he was and was mistaken, then he was as bad a teacher as there has ever been.

The third thing that we might say about Jesus is that his claims were true, in which case he was, and is, Lord. If Jesus believed that his claims about himself were true and they were, then Jesus was not only a great human being, but was also God on Earth.

If we take Jesus seriously, then we must take Jesus’ claims about himself seriously. We cannot say that Jesus was a great teacher whom we admire and look up to, but that the most fundamental element of his teachings was a monumental error. Jesus was not a great, but merely human, teacher; he was either much less than this, or much more.

Those who respond to this argument by writing Jesus off as either a liar or a lunatic are, for all that has been said so far, just as reasonable as those who respond by accepting Jesus as Lord. This argument is an attack only on the view that Jesus was a great teacher but not God; there is nothing in it that counts against the view that Jesus was a terrible teacher. In order to show that it is better to view Jesus as Lord than as either a liar or a lunatic, it would have to be demonstrated that there is some reason to take Jesus’ claims seriously.

Do we have any reason, though, to take Jesus’ claims seriously? Many have argued that we do, that we have the strongest possible evidence that Jesus knew what he was talking about when it came to the supernatural. There is, it is argued, substantial historical evidence that Jesus was raised from the dead, endorsing his claims to religious authority.

The Resurrection, it is said, was a divine endorsement of Jesus’ teachings, God’s confirmation that Jesus’ teachings were true. If this is correct, then there can be no doubt as to which of the three positions concerning Jesus outlined above is the correct one.


 
helpme
May 25, 2007
1 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

You wrote:
"Oh the lord, liar, or lunatic fallacy. You assume that a liar NEVER speaks the truth, and that a luntic can make no rational sense. Thousands of people followed David koresh. He was either liar, lunatic or lord also. It's a fallacy to say a liar can never be a great teacher. Same thing about a lunatic."

RE:
I don't assume anything of the sort. obviously people who lie also tell the truth.we are not dealing with everything that Jesus ever said in his whole life, only his claim to deity.
You are correct to use the same criteria for koresh. He was absolutley either a liar or lunatic.
But he was not Lord. It is very obvious that he fullfilled none of the messianic prophecies.

In reality, none of that matters because the liar, lunatic arguments did not originate as an apologetic for the deity of Christ. In fact, they are two of the oldest arguments used by those who have tried to discredit Jesus. The "or Lord" part is the believer's rebuttal to those two arguments. So you are correct, in part. The liar, lunatic argument are fallacies. The only other reasonable choice is that He is who he claimed to be.



 
gogopoet
May 23, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

God isn't a spaghetti monster. God is an invisible pink unicorn. We know she is pink because she said so. We know she is invisible because no one can see her. *grin*

 
nbcrusader
May 23, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Those who have faith in God need no burden of proof.

Those who want to deny God, shift the burden to ease the conscience. It is self-gratifying to say "There is no God, you must prove me wrong".

An intelligent atheist will try to prove there is a God, and by failing will reinforce their own beliefs.



 
rhys
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

He dosent need proof.
he has faith.

 
nbcrusader
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

It is fairly narrow minded to think of someone's faith as "blind faith". You have no idea what a person goes through, what they evaluate, their personal experiences, before they make a decision to place their faith in Christ. I don't need to prove the existence of God to you, but I've had plenty of experience that proves the existence of God to me. Please keep that distinction clear in your mind.

Relying on the flimsy argument that "you can't prove God, therefore He must not exist" is getting old. If, as you suggest, you have tried to prove there is a God and failed, it would be interesting to hear the steps you took to support your position.



 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
To prove there is a God, one only has to find God once or one "proof" that he exists. One might find God on the first attempt or the one millionth or the ten millionth or more. It may take a trillion lifetimes. The point I am making is that the one seeking God's existance only needs to look at one place at a time, giving him unlimited options.

The one trying to prove that God does not exist must look at every option and everyplace in the universe at the same time to see if God is NOT there. He is trying to prove a universal negative which is much less reasonable than searching For God.

The side that is less reasonable holds the burden of proof. It is more reasonable to prove something exists.

The burden belongs to those doubting God's existance.


 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of
things not seen (Hbr 11:1).

This is not so much a definition of faith as it is the
declaration of what faith does. It is the substance of things
that are hoped for. And the word "substance" there means the
substantiating of the things that we hope for. And the
"evidence", that word means conviction of the things not seen.

I'm convicted of truths, though I may not have seen them, I'm
convicted of their existence. There IS evidence for the existence
of God, and it causes me to believe in God. Though I have never
seen God, the evidence of His existence creates that faith in my
heart.


Jesus says Love the Lord with all your heart, soul, strength and
MIND.

The Blble NEVER called us to a blind faith at all.


 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: gogopoet Show

Debate C:
There are many evidences that shoot down Darwin's theory.

Darwin himself said that evolutionis impossible to prove without transitional
fossils. If evolution were true, there should be miilions of these. Scientists have, at best, a few that they label "transitional" but they are questioned by even evolutionists.

 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

But are we now debating evolution or the burden of proof?

 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

I don't agree with the "opponents" you speak about. Unfortunately,open debates make it difficult to truley debate because one's arguments are often lumped in with others.

I don't believe that all we have is faith. That's why I gave the scriptures that challange us not to live by blind faith.

The very fact that you can't prove a negative is exactly why the burden is on the "no God" position.
It is a more ridiculous argument. It is unprovable and so is merely ones "feeling" or "opinion" with nothing to support it.


 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

I agree that all things hoped do not always happen.
But taken in context, the hope spoken about is the good news (gospel) of of a risen Christ. It is not talking about my hope that Bill Gates will give me $1,000,000.

 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

I am not dodging your evidence challenge. I only need the time to type it out in a way that doesn't take 50 pages. stay tuned, I will get to it in time.

 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

Nowadays, there are very few, if any, historians or scholars who question the historicity of the Jesus of the Bible. There are too many writings concerning him from "secular historians and eyewitnesses"

Learned skeptics don't argue his existence, only his deity.

 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

here is on example from JOSEPHUS:

Jesus, Wise Man and Teacher: Antiquities 18.3.3

"Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, (if it be lawful to call him a man,) for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews, and many of the Gentiles. (He was the Christ;) and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him, (for he appeared to them alive again the third day,) as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct to this day."

Note: Interpolations, possibly added by others, are indicated in parenthesis.


 
helpme
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

"but if there is no Jesus Christ, your hope in his rising is just as worthless as the hope that Bill Gates will make you rich."

I was merely responding to the above statement.

If you want to also discuss The deity of christ we can do that. But I fear we are opening too many topics at once and closing none.

In any case, think about this. since you did not argue the historicity of Christ I will move on.

We know this about Christ. He claimed to be God.
There are three options to consider.

1. He was lying.
2. he was dillusional.
3. he was in fact God


 
kenski70
May 25, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Why should anyone have to PROVE anything to you...If you choose not to believe after hearing the message its on you.... Keep this in mind... If those who believe in god and Christ are right then one day you will stand in judgement in front of god. You will be asked to explain your actions and why you did what you did in your life... The last thing you want is a thumbs down fron the creator of thumbs...

 
helpme
May 25, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

You said:
I claim that one of the following is true (though I don't know which one).

1) Jesus never said the statements attributed to him in the bible. (not one of your options)
2) Jesus was lying about his divinity
3) Jesus was delusional about his connection with god (like david koresh or hitler).
4) Jesus never intended his words to be taken seriously

Re:
I don't undrestand? when you thought that I was using the liar, lunitic argument, you called them fallacies. now you include them as possibilities?

1) Obviously it is possible that Jesus never made the statements that he is credited with. However, many of those statements have been corraborated through the historical writtings of tacticus(sp?), Josephus and others. So the evidence strongly leans to the side of accuracy.

2)an old argument that skeptics have made for centuries. (you have called them fallacies.)

3)DITTO

4)do you seriously consider that a man would go through, rejection,ridicule,running for his life,beatings,and one of the most painful executions known to man, just to joke around a littlte bit? Do you think he would devote his life to teaching, loving mankind, and living in poverty just to fool some people? It doesn't make sense.

YOU SAID:
Your whole argument can be framed as thus.
1) the only 3 options for a man who claims to be god is that he is a liar lunatic or telling the truth.
2) a liar or lunatic cannot say anything of value on par with what jesus said, so he cannot be one of those options
3) thus jesus is lord.

You ignore the fact that both premise one and two are false.

Re:
ONCE AGAIN, The argument of liar, lunatic is one made by skeptics(you even used them earlier), "or Lord" is the christian rebuttal.

 
rhys
Jun 03, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

*shakes head*

i wish i could share you all the things i have heard and seen and felt. and then you would believe too. But i cant just bundle it into a box with a label that says "evidence". I have experienced more then enough to prove God's existence.

 
helpme
Jun 03, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

You forgot the third kind of faith.

#3: faith is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for, the EVIDENCE of things not seen.

Just because you don't believe does not mean there is no evidence. When there is evidence submitted, you have faith in your atheism that the evidence is an automatic untruth or a lie or an inconsistancy or a misunderstanding.

Since you have admitted that you can't prove there is no God then you have to live by faith that there is no God. You are in the same boat as us.

YOU:
Basically to say "I have faith" means "I don't care about what's true- that's above my head. If I worry about what's true my imaginary friend might not let me party with him when I die."

RE:
You are now resorting to sarcasm and to degrading those that don't agree with you. Isn't that hate speech? At least it does not seem to be debate-worthy talk.

 
helpme
Jun 05, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

Although I am enjoying the discussion, we have gotten away from the original question. Who has the burden of proof?

 
asimpleman
Jul 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: tggdan3 Show

You begin by talking about the existence of God, and then move to talking about explanations for universe origination. These are not equatable. If God exists, that does not necessitate that He did or did not create anything. In fact, your argument says nothing about the burden of proof for God's existence. You only address creation.

 
+ Add Argument

13
The burdon of proof is on the people who say there is a god


tggdan3
May 22, 2007
4 convinced
Rebuttal
This is not a debate about whether or not god is real, but on which side has the burden of proof.

The burden of proof is clearly on the side trying to state that God is real. There are infinate number of possible explinations for the origin of the universe, ranging from realistic, to exadurated, or to rediculous, and someone can't be expected to have to prove that ALL of them except one are not valid. So the burden of proof is on the people who say that there is a god.

 
henthorn
May 23, 2007
2 convinced
Rebuttal
to quote Douglas Adams;
"Proof denies faith and without faith you [God] are nothing."

Think about it; it is impossible to prove that something does not exist. If something does not exist, there can be no _evidence_ to suggest that.

Do the miriads of invisible monkeys dancing around you without making a sound exist? I challenge you to find any sort of proof showing they don't. Perhaps that's a bit farfetched...

The only resorce for those who think that God does not exist lies in showing how falliable the proof offered for the existance of God is (not that I am making a judgemement on that here). It is logically impossible to find proof for the non-existance of god.

There can never be proof of non-existance.

 
gogopoet
May 22, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: jahbuh Show

You seem to be debating several things at once here:

A Who is responsible for proving the existence or non-existence of a deity;

B How the existence of the material universe began, and;

C The validity of Darwin's theory of evolution.


RE: "Yes there are hundreds of possibilities but only one makes the most sense. "

For debate A, theists and atheists share equally in the burden of proof, but there can be no proof given our present technology, therefore the debate reduces to opinion and we all know what those are like.

RE: "...or how an ape that still exists in our present world also morphed into a man."

This areguement is completely dishonest. No serious scientist who subscribes to the theory of evolution maintains that anyone has descended from a species of ape that still exists. The theory is that all the existing species descended from a common ancestor, such that humans share a common ancestor with chimpanzees and gorillas, while that ancestor shares a common ancestor with an ancestor of bonobos. If you use a family as an anology, chimps gorillas and humans are siblings and bonobos are our cousins.

For B, there are only two possibilities. The universe began spontaneously or it was created. Again, there can be no evidence one way or the other, meaning there is nothing here to debate.

With C, there is nothing to debate because your arguements have already been addressed, unless you have some proof that will shoot down Darwin's theory. If you had read the book you would already know this though.

 
cancerfish
May 22, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
outrageous claims require outrageous evidence.

It's as simple as that.
I don't have to prove god doesn't exist, because you can't disprove an infinite amount of things. You have to prove this so called god exists.

 
tggdan3
May 23, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: jahbuh Show

You haven't proven that evolution is false, nor that there are 100s of gods instead of just one, or that god isn't a spaghetti monster. All of those are possible, though not all very likely.

So the burden of proof is on the person claiming the solution. The burden of proof is also on evolutionists to prove evolution as an alternative. But you must prove your own viewpoint also. If you want to go off faith you might as well believe that a council of unicorns created the universe so that the could graze in the stars.

 
tggdan3
May 23, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: nbcrusader Show

"Those who have faith in God need no burden of proof."

Well of course, people with blind faith in something won't ask for evidence!

"An Intelligent Atheist will try to prove there is a God and by failing will reinforce their own beliefs"

True- but this is how we BECAME atheists. The difference is that Christians never really tried to prove there was a god- because they felt they needed no proof, as your above statement indicates.

"To those who want to deny God..." Again, you yourself are atheist when it comes to Shiva, or Thor, or Odin, or Zeus. Will you set out to prove that every other religion is WRONG including atheism, or would it make more sense to prove yours is right and THEREFORE everyone else is wrong.

 
tggdan3
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: rhys Show

"I have faith" Is a cop-out answer.

Why not say "Even though anyone can prove that what I believe in is extremely unlikely and a rediculous belief, I choose to believe in it anyway, because I am unconcerned with truth, or intelligence"

or why not "I would rather believe in what I WANT to be true then what is ACTUALLY true."

There are 2 kinds of faith
1) believe in something despite lack of evidence
2) belief in something despite evidence to the contrary.

Basically to say "I have faith" means "I don't care about what's true- that's above my head. If I worry about what's true my imaginary friend might not let me party with him when I die."

 
tggdan3
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: helpme Show

We're talking about the burden of proof. My opponants said that they just "have faith" and thus the burden is on someone else to convince them otherwise. I've stated that's a cop out answer- especially considering you can't prove a negative.

 
tggdan3
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: helpme Show

What evidence do you claim for the exitanance of god?

And things hoped for don't always happen. It might comfort us to believe cancer will be cured soon- but we shouldn't plan for it. It might be nice to assume we'll die before our next credit card bill comes, but we shouldn't spend like it. Truth has nothing to do with what we WANT.


 
tggdan3
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: helpme Show

I understand what you're saying- but if there is no Jesus Christ, your hope in his rising is just as worthless as the hope that Bill Gates will make you rich. It either is, or it isn't, regardless of your faith or hope.

 
tggdan3
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: helpme Show

His deity includes his rising from the dead which makes my previous point completely valid. David Koresh and Jeffrey Dahmer were real too- but they weren't sent by God.

 
tggdan3
May 24, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: helpme Show

Oh the lord, liar, or lunatic fallacy. You assume that a liar NEVER speaks the truth, and that a luntic can make no rational sense. Thousands of people followed David koresh. He was either liar, lunatic or lord also.

It's a fallacy to say a liar can never be a great teacher. Same thing about a lunatic.

As far as Jesus as a moral leader:
Matthew 10:34 "I came not to send peace but a sword"
Like 19:27 "Be those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither and slay them before me."
John 2:15- Jesus attacks merchants with a whip.
Matthew 8:32- Jesus drowns innocent animals.
Matt 15:22-28- Jesus refuses to heal a sick child until pressured by his mother.
Matt 10:35-36 "I am come to set a man at variance against his father and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household"
Luke 14:26 "If any man come to me and hate not his father and mother and wife and children and brethren and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple"
Mat 21:18-19 Jesus curses a fig tree for the "sin" of being fruitful out of season.
Mark 2:23- He steals corn on the sabbath
Matthew 21- he encourages desiciples to steal a horse

So I'll go with lunatic myself in any case, even though the liar, lunatic, lord is a fallacious arguement.

 
tggdan3
May 25, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: helpme Show

I claim that one of the following is true (though I don't know which one).

1) Jesus never said the statements attributed to him in the bible. (not one of your options)
2) Jesus was lying about his divinity
3) Jesus was delusional about his connection with god (like david koresh or hitler).
4) Jesus never intended his words to be taken seriously

There are many quotes even today that are attributed to people still living which those people deny making.

Your whole argument can be framed as thus.
1) the only 3 options for a man who claims to be god is that he is a liar lunatic or telling the truth.
2) a liar or lunatic cannot say anything of value on par with what jesus said, so he cannot be one of those options
3) thus jesus is lord.

You ignore the fact that both premise one and two are false.

 
thomascm
Jun 05, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: rhys Show

The burden of proof should always, in any case, be on those making a positive claim about the universe. Otherwise our minds would be populated with all sorts of fancies until we could find concrete evidence that disproved them. As is often said by Dawkins et al, you can't disprove the flying spaghetti monster either. But the burden of proof isn't on you to do so, as you will surely agree. So why is your God a special case? If you consider Jesus Christ persuasive, why not Mohammed?
If you do really 'experience' God, could you ask nicely if he could pop round and give me a visit? He seems to be avoiding me.

 
ziegheil
Jul 10, 2007
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: nbcrusader Show

Actually, everyone on this planet was born an atheist. Those who believe in God have changed from their original form - hence, the burden of proof lies with them.

There is more self-gratification in saying there is a god who cares about my internal soul and ever-lasting life, then it is to say, I am just here for 80 years, and when I die, I will be buried in the ground. The end!

 
cruelworld
Jan 17, 2008
0 convinced
Rebuttal
Rebuttal to: rhys Show

"You can believe what you believe and i can believe what i believe"

If only it were that simple.

1/
Organised religion permeates into all aspects society, even one that tries to be secular. Religion manipulates law, education, politics, business, and even science (by publishing scientific-looking propaganda - it would be all right if it actually took part in the empirical peer-review process). Modern civilisation is usually incompatible with the ethics, values, morality of ancient doctrines.

2/
Religious doctrine usually encourages its proponents have to try to convert people (this is an intended survival strategy). Not only is this bothersome, but it perpetuates religious conflicts. There are people on this earth who want to start a nuclear war for no reason than to hasten 'judgement day'.

3/
Religious people are more easily manipulated by politicians and global businesses. It makes it harder for the rest of us to resist being controlled and exploited.

4/
Religions are based on the ignorance of our ancient ancestors. These ridiculous beliefs hinder and warp the development of modern societies.

5/
Our reality of the universe comes through our senses, which are nothing more than electrical signals. We cannot trust our individual senses to tell us about reality (visit a mental ward if you don't believe me, or think of the film 'Matrix'). For us to be certain about our universe, we must observe it and then come to a consensus about what we see. This is what the scientific process tries to do, with each important observation being peer-reviewed by hundreds of thousands of people. Bad ideas and observations are falsified and discarded over time, and good ones survive, are developed and have further knowledge developed upon them. This is the only way that we can build the most accurate picture of our universe.

However, religious people are trying to do nothing less than change our perception of the reality of the universe. They do not use empirical measurements or evidence. They do not partake in the peer-review process. Yet they expect us to change our entire perception, our entire reality, based on 'an experience they had', or because they 'believe' something is true.


 


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