Quotes about God to consider…if you think science leads to atheism.

Posted on August 12, 2010 By

Einsteintongue

The question of whether there exists a Creator and Ruler of the Universe has been answered in the affirmative by some of the highest intellects that have ever existed.”

–Charles Darwin, the founder of evolutionary biology, as cited in his book Descent of Man.

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“This sense of wonder leads most scientists to a Superior Being – der Alte, the Old One, as Einstein affectionately called the Deity – a Superior Intelligence, the Lord of all Creation and Natural Law.”

Abdus Salam, winner of the 1979 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in electroweak theory. He is here quoted in his article entitled Science and Religion.

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“A scientific discovery is also a religious discovery. There is no conflict between science and religion. Our knowledge of God is made larger with every discovery we make about the world.”

–Joseph H. Taylor, Jr., who received the 1993 Nobel Prize in Physics for the discovery of the first known binary pulsar, and for his work which supported the Big Bang theory of the creation of the universe.

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“The more I study science, the more I believe in God.”

–Albert Einstein

(The Wall Street Journal, Dec 24, 1997, article by Jim Holt, “Science Resurrects God.”)

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“I want to know how God created this world. I am not interested in this or that phenomenon, in the spectrum of this or that element. I want to know his thoughts; the rest are details.”

–Albert Einstein

(From E. Salaman, “A Talk With Einstein,” The Listener 54 (1955), pp. 370-371, quoted in Jammer, p. 123).

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“God [is] the author of the universe, and the free establisher of the laws of motion.”

Physicist and chemist Robert Boyle, who is considered to be the founder of modern chemistry.

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“It may seem bizarre, but in my opinion science offers a surer path to God than religion.”

“People take it for granted that the physical world is both ordered and intelligible. The underlying order in nature-the laws of physics-are simply accepted as given, as brute facts. Nobody asks where they came from; at least they do not do so in polite company. However, even the most atheistic scientist accepts as an act of faith that the universe is not absurd, that there is a rational basis to physical existence manifested as law-like order in nature that is at least partly comprehensible to us. So science can proceed only if the scientist adopts an essentially theological worldview.”

–Physicist Paul Davies, the winner of the 2001 Kelvin Medal issued by the Institute of Physics and the winner of the 2002 Faraday Prize issued by the Royal Society (amongst other awards), as cited in his book God and the New Physics (first quote), and from his acceptance address of the 1995 Templeton Prize (second quote).

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“Astronomers who do not draw theistic or deistic conclusions are becoming rare, and even the few dissenters hint that the tide is against them. Geoffrey Burbidge, of the University of California at San Diego, complains that his fellow astronomers are rushing off to join ‘the First Church of Christ of the Big Bang.’”

–Astrophysicist Hugh Ross, former post-doctoral fellow at the California Institute of Technology and author of The Creator and the Cosmos: How the Latest Scientific Discoveries of the Century Reveal God.

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“Astronomers now find they have painted themselves into a corner because they have proven, by their own methods, that the world began abruptly in an act of creation to which you can trace the seeds of every star, every planet, every living thing in this cosmos and on the earth. And they have found that all this happened as a product of forces they cannot hope to discover….  That there are what I or anyone would call supernatural forces at work is now, I think, a scientifically proven fact.”

–Astronomer, physicist and founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies Robert Jastrow. Please see Jastrow’s book God and the Astronomers for further reading.

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“I believe that the more thoroughly science is studied, the further does it take us from anything comparable to atheism.”

“If you study science deep enough and long enough, it will force you to believe in God.”

Lord William Kelvin, who was noted for his theoretical work on thermodynamics, the concept of absolute zero and the Kelvin temperature scale based upon it.

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“The fanatical atheists are like slaves who are still feeling the weight of their chains which they have thrown off after hard struggle. They are creatures who – in their grudge against traditional religion as the ‘opium of the masses’ – cannot hear the music of the spheres.”

Albert Einstein

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“God created everything by number, weight and measure.”

“In the absence of any other proof, the thumb alone would convince me of God’s existence.”

“I have a fundamental belief in the Bible as the Word of God, written by those who were inspired. I study the Bible daily.”

Sir Isaac Newton, who is widely regarded to have been the greatest scientist the world has ever produced.

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“Both religion and science require a belief in God. For believers, God is in the beginning, and for physicists He is at the end of all considerations… To the former He is the foundation, to the latter, the crown of the edifice of every generalized world view.”

“There can never be any real opposition between religion and science; for the one is the complement of the other. Every serious and reflective person realizes, I think, that the religious element in his nature must be recognized and cultivated if all the powers of the human soul are to act together in perfect balance and harmony. And indeed it was not by accident that the greatest thinkers of all ages were deeply religious souls.”

Max Planck, the Nobel Prize winning physicist who made the crucial scientific contribution of founding quantum physics.

Religion and Natural Science (Lecture Given 1937) Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers, trans. F. Gaynor (New York, 1949), pp. 184

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“As we conquer peak after peak we see in front of us regions full of interest and beauty, but we do not see our goal, we do not see the horizon; in the distance tower still higher peaks, which will yield to those who ascend them still wider prospects, and deepen the feeling, the truth of which is emphasized by every advance in science, that ‘Great are the Works of the Lord’.”

Sir Joseph J. Thomson, Nobel Prize winning physicist, discoverer of the electron, founder of atomic physics.

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“The gift of mental power comes from God, Divine Being, and if we concentrate our minds on that truth, we become in tune with this great power.”

–Nikola Tesla, the inventor and futurist scientist known for numerous inventions, but best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electrical supply system. Tesla was the winner of: Edison Medal (1916); Elliott Cresson Medal (1894); John Scott Medal (1934)

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“I have looked into most philosophical systems and I have seen that none will work without God.”

“Science is incompetent to reason upon the creation of matter itself out of nothing. We have reached the utmost limit of our thinking faculties when we have admitted that because matter cannot be eternal and self-existent it must have been created.”

Physicist and mathematician James Clerk Maxwell, who is credited with formulating classical electromagnetic theory and whose contributions to science are considered to be of the same magnitude to those of Einstein and Newton.

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“For myself, faith begins with a realization that a supreme intelligence brought the universe into being and created man. It is not difficult for me to have this faith, for it is incontrovertible that where there is a plan there is intelligence—an orderly, unfolding universe testifies to the truth of the most majestic statement ever uttered—-‘In the beginning God.'”

“Science can have no quarrel with a religion which postulates a God to whom men are His children.”

Arthur Compton, winner of the 1927 Nobel Prize in Physics for his discovery of the Compton Effect.

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“Those who say that the study of science makes a man an atheist must be rather silly.”

“Something which is against natural laws seems to me rather out of the question because it would be a depressive idea about God. It would make God smaller than he must be assumed. When he stated that these laws hold, then they hold, and he wouldn’t make exceptions. This is too human an idea. Humans do such things, but not God.”

–Nobel Prize winning physicist Max Born, who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics.

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“God is a mathematician of a very high order and He used advanced mathematics in constructing the universe.”

–Nobel Prize winning physicist Paul A. M. Dirac, who made crucial early contributions to both quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics.

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“The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.”

“In the history of science, ever since the famous trial of Galileo, it has repeatedly been claimed that scientific truth cannot be reconciled with the religious interpretation of the world. Although I am now convinced that scientific truth is unassailable in its own field, I have never found it possible to dismiss the content of religious thinking as simply part of an outmoded phase in the consciousness of mankind, a part we shall have to give up from now on. Thus in the course of my life I have repeatedly been compelled to ponder on the relationship of these two regions of thought, for I have never been able to doubt the reality of that to which they point.”

Werner Heisenberg, who was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics for the creation of quantum mechanics (which is absolutely crucial to modern science).

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I’m not an atheist, and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.” [Italics are mine]

Albert Einstein, as cited in Antony Flew’s book, There Is A God: How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind.

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“…Those laws are within the grasp of the human mind. God wanted us to recognize them by creating us after his own image so that we could share in his own thoughts… and if piety allow us to say so, our understanding is in this respect of the same kind as the divine, at least as far as we are able to grasp something of it in our mortal life.”

–Johannes Kepler, the German mathematician and astronomer who discovered the laws of planetary motion which later served as one of the foundations for Issac Newton’s theory of universal gravitation. Kepler is considered to be one of the founders of the field of astronomy.

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“Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist.”

Charles Darwin, the founder of evolutionary biology, as quoted in his autobiography.

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“The ultimate reason of things must lie in a necessary substance, in which the differentiation of the changes only exists eminently as in their source; and this is what we call God.”

“Whence it follows that God is absolutely perfect, since perfection is nothing but magnitude of positive reality, in the strict sense, setting aside the limits or bounds in things which are limited.”

–Gottfried Leibniz, the German mathematician and philosopher (1646-1716) who founded calculus (concurrently with Isaac Newton). Leibniz also made major early contributions to physics.

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“As I try to discern the origin of that conviction, I seem to find it in a basic notion . . . enunciated first in the Western world by the ancient Hebrews: namely, that the universe is governed by a single God, and is not the product of the whims of many gods, each governing his own province according to his own laws. This monotheistic view seems to be the historical foundation for modern science.”

–Biochemist Melvin Calvin, winner of the 1961 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his discovery of the Calvin cycle.  

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“Those who have magnified more recent controversies about the relations of science and religion, and who have projected them back into historical time, simply perpetuate a historical myth. The myth of a perennial conflict between science and religion is one to which no historian of science would subscribe.”

Former Oxford University Professor of Science and Religion Peter Harrison.

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“The ghostly presence of virtual particles defies rational common sense and is nonintuitive for those unacquainted with physics. Religious belief in God, and Christian belief that God became Man around two thousand years ago, may seem strange to common-sense thinking. But when the most elementary physical things behave in this way, we should be prepared to accept that the deepest aspects of our existence go beyond our common-sense intuitions.”

–Nobel Prize winning physicist Tony Hewish as quoted in the foreword to John Polkinghorne and Nicholas Beale’s book Questions of Truth: Fifty-one Responses to Questions about God, Science, and Belief.

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“The best data we have (concerning the Big Bang) are exactly what I would have predicted, had I nothing to go on but the five books of Moses, the Psalms, the Bible as a whole.”

“If there are a bunch of fruit trees, one can say that whoever created these fruit trees wanted some apples. In other words, by looking at the order in the world, we can infer purpose and from purpose we begin to get some knowledge of the Creator, the Planner of all this. This is, then, how I look at God. I look at God through the works of God’s hands and from those works imply intentions. From these intentions, I receive an impression of the Almighty.”

Arno Penzias, the 1978 Nobel Prize recipient in physics as cited in New York Times on March 12, 1978 (first quote) and ‘The God I Believe in’, Joshua O. Haberman – editor, New York, Maxwell Macmillan International, 1994, 184. (second quote)

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“There is for me powerful evidence that there is something going on behind it all. . . It seems as though somebody has fine tuned nature’s numbers to make the Universe. . . The impression of design is overwhelming.”

–Physicist Paul Davies, mentioned above.

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“Amazing fine tuning occurs in the laws that make this [complexity] possible. Realization of the complexity of what is accomplished makes it very difficult not to use the word ‘miraculous’ without taking a stand as to the ontological status of the word.”

“God is the creator and sustainer of the universe and of humankind, transcending the universe but immanent in it.”

“God’s nature embodies justice and holiness, but is also a personal and loving God who cares for each creature (so the name ‘father’ is indeed appropriate).”

“God’s nature is revealed most perfectly in the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, as recorded in the New Testament of the Bible, who was sent by God to reveal the divine nature, summarized in ‘God is Love.'”

George Ellis, the South African astrophysicist who was a collaborator on the Hawking-Penrose singularity theorems (regarding the Big Bang theory of the creation of the universe), as cited in What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should) by Stephen Williams.

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“I believe that a full understanding of this remarkable human capacity for scientific discovery ultimately requires the insight that our power in this respect is the gift of the universe’s Creator who, in that ancient and powerful phrase, has made humanity in the image of God (Genesis I: 26-27). Through the exercise of this gift, those working in fundamental physics are able to discern a world of deep and beautiful order–a universe shot thorough with signs of mind. I believe that it is indeed the Mind of that world’s Creator that is perceived in this way.  Science is possible because the universe is a divine creation.”

–Former Cambridge University Professor of Mathematical Physics John Polkinghorne, as quoted in his book Quantum Physics and Theology: An Unexpected Kinship. Polkinghorne is a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) and Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE). In part because of his insights about God from physics, Polkinghorne changed careers and joined the Anglican priesthood.

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“It is relatively unusual that a physical scientist is truly an atheist. Why is this true? Some point to the anthropic constraints, the remarkable fine tuning of the universe. For example, Freeman Dyson, a Princeton faculty member, has said, ‘Nature has been kinder to us that we had any right to expect.'”

–Quantum chemist Henry F. Schaefer III, five time nominee for the Nobel Prize, as quoted in his essay Stephen Hawking, the Big Bang, and God.

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“To know the mighty works of God, to comprehend His wisdom and majesty and power; to appreciate, in degree, the wonderful workings of His laws, surely all this must be a pleasing and acceptable mode of worship to the Most High, to whom ignorance cannot be more grateful than knowledge.” – Nicolaus Copernicus,
Read more at http://www.survivalistboards.com/showthread.php?t=338674&page=2#3OfP3gG6CdB1FU2V.99

“To know the mighty works of God, to comprehend His wisdom and majesty and power; to appreciate, in degree, the wonderful workings of His laws, surely all this must be a pleasing and acceptable mode of worship to the Most High, to whom ignorance cannot be more grateful than knowledge.”

–Nicolaus Copernicus, the mathematician and astronomer (1473-1543) who formulated a heliocentric model of the universe, as cited in The Language of God by Francis Collins. (“Heliocentric” places the sun, rather than the Earth, at the center of the universe).

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“The significance and joy in my science comes in those occasional moments of discovering something new and saying to myself, ‘So that’s how God did it.’ My goal is to understand a little corner of God’s plan.”

Henry “Fritz” Schaefer, five time Nobel Prize nominee, Graham Perdue Professor of Chemistry, and director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry at the University of Georgia, as cited in What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should) by Stephen Williams.

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“It is evident that an acquaintance with natural laws means no less than an acquaintance with the mind of God therein expressed.”

James Joule, propounder of the first law of thermodynamics (on the conservation of energy). Joule also made important contributions to the kinetic theory of gases. The unit of heat known as the “Joule” is named after him.

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“There are many ways in which people are made aware of their power to believe in the supremacy of Divine guidance and power: through music or visual art, some event or experience decisively influencing their life, looking through a microscope or telescope, or just by looking at the miraculous manifestations or purposefulness of Nature.”

Sir Ernst Chain, winner of the the 1945 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology “for the discovery of penicillin and its curative effect in various infectious diseases.”

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“Let me say that I don’t see any conflict between science and religion. I go to church as many other scientists do. I share with most religious people a sense of mystery and wonder at the universe and I want to participate in religious ritual and practices because they’re something that all humans can share.”

Sir Martin Rees, the British cosmologist and astrophysicist who has been Astronomer Royal since 1995 and was the president of the Royal Society between 2005 and 2010. Rees is the winner of the Crafoord Prize (which is the most prestigious award in astronomy), amongst many other awards.

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“The more I study nature, the more I stand amazed at the work of the Creator. Science brings men nearer to God.”

“In good philosophy, the word cause ought to be reserved to the single Divine impulse that has formed the universe.”

“Little science takes you away from God but more of it takes you to Him.”

Louis Pasteur, the founder of microbiology and immunology.

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“A Creator must exist. The Big Bang ripples and subsequent scientific findings are clearly pointing to an ex nihilo creation consistent with the first few verses of the book of Genesis.”

–Quantum chemist Henry F. Schaefer III, five time nominee for the Nobel Prize, as above.

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“Nevertheless, just as I believe that the Book of Scripture illumines the pathway to God, so I believe that the Book of Nature, with its astonishing details–the blade of grass, the Conus cedonulli, or the resonance levels of the carbon atom–also suggest a God of purpose and a God of design. And I think my belief makes me no less a scientist.”

Owen Gingerich, former Research Professor of Astronomy and of the History of Science at Harvard University. Gingerich is now the senior astronomer at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.

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“Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”

–Albert Einstein

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“When confronted with the order and beauty of the universe and the strange coincidences of nature, it’s very tempting to take the leap of faith from science into religion. I am sure many physicists want to. I only wish they would admit it.”

Physicist Tony Rothman, former post-doctoral fellow at Oxford University

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“When I began my career as a cosmologist some twenty years ago, I was a convinced atheist. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that one day I would be writing a book purporting to show that the central claims of Judeo-Christian theology are in fact true, that these claims are straightforward deductions of the laws of physics as we now understand them. I have been forced into these conclusions by the inexorable logic of my own special branch of physics.”

“From the perspective of the latest physical theories, Christianity is not a mere religion, but an experimentally testable science.”

Professor of Mathematical Physics Frank Tippler, author of The Physics of Christianity and The Physics of Immortality. Tipler is one of the two founders of the famous anthropic principle regarding the fundamental physical constants necessary for the origin of life. He became a Christian as a result of his science.

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“It seems to me that when confronted with the marvels of life and the universe, one must ask why and not just how. The only possible answers are religious. . . . I find a need for God in the universe and in my own life.”

“Religion is founded on faith. It seems to me that when confronted with the marvels of life and the universe, one must ask why and not just how. The only possible answers are religious. For me that means Protestant Christianity, to which I was introduced as a child and which has withstood the tests of a lifetime.”

“But the context of religion is a great background for doing science. In the words of Psalm 19, ‘The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament showeth his handiwork’. Thus scientific research is a worshipful act, in that it reveals more of the wonders of God’s creation.”

–Arthur L. Schawlow, Professor of Physics at Stanford University and winner of the 1981 Nobel Prize in Physics.

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To the question, “Many prominent scientists – including Darwin, Einstein, and Planck – have considered the concept of God very seriously. What are your thoughts on the concept of God and on the existence of God?”

Christian Anfinsen replied: “I think only an idiot can be an atheist. We must admit that there exists an incomprehensible power or force with limitless foresight and knowledge that started the whole universe going in the first place.”

Christian Anfinsen, winner of the 1972 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work on ribonuclease.

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“You accept the historical Jesus?”

“Unquestionably! No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life.”

–Albert Einstein, from an interview with the Saturday Evening Post

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“Astronomy leads us to a unique event, a universe which was created out of nothing, and delicately balanced to provide exactly the conditions required to support life. In the absence of an absurdly improbable accident, the observations of modern science seem to suggest an underlying, one might say, supernatural plan.”

Arno Penzias, winner of the 1978 Nobel Prize in Physics.

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“The exquisite order displayed by our scientific understanding of the physical world calls for the divine.”

MIT physicist Vera Kistiakowsky

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“Here is the cosmological proof of the existence of God – the design argument of Paley – updated and refurbished. The fine tuning of the universe provides prima facie evidence of deistic design. Take your choice: blind chance that requires multitudes of universes or design that requires only one…. Many scientists, when they admit their views, incline toward the teleological or design argument.”

–Cosmologist and astronomer Edward Robert Harrison

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“A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature. The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question.”

–Cambridge University astrophysicist and mathematician Fred Hoyle commenting on the incredible fine-tuning necessary for life to exist (as quoted in The Creator and the Cosmos by Hugh Ross).

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“Fred Hoyle and I differ on lots of questions, but on this we agree:  a common sense and satisfying interpretation of our world suggests the designing hand of a superintelligence.”

–Former Harvard University Research Professor of Astronomy and the History of Science Owen Gingerich, who is now the senior astronomer at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. Gingerich is here reflecting on Fred Hoyle’s above comment.

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“Perhaps the best argument…that the Big Bang supports theism is the obvious unease with which it is greeted by some atheist physicists. At times this has led to scientific ideas…being advanced with a tenacity which so exceeds their intrinsic worth that one can only suspect the operation of psychological forces lying very much deeper than the usual academic desire of a theorist to support his or her theory.”

–Imperial College of London astrophysicist Christopher J. Isham, who is Britain’s leading quantum cosmologist.

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“As to the cause of the Universe, in context of expansion, that is left for the reader to insert, but our picture is incomplete without Him [God].”

–Astrophysicist and mathametician Edward Milne (winner of the Royal Society’s Royal Medal, the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society, and the Bruce Medal)

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“We all know that there are regions of the human spirit untrammeled by the world of physics. In the mystic sense of the creation around us, in the expression of art, in a yearning towards God, the soul grows upward and finds fulfillment of something implanted in its nature. The sanction for this development is within us, a striving born with our consciousness or an Inner Light proceeding from a greater power than ours. Science can scarcely question this sanction, for the pursuit of science springs from a striving which the mind is impelled to follow, a questioning that will not be suppressed. Whether in the intellectual pursuits of science or in the mystical pursuits of the spirit, the light beckons ahead and the purpose surging in our nature responds.”

— The great physicist Sir Arthur Eddington as quoted in his classic work The Nature of the Physical World

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“What is the ultimate solution to the origin of the Universe? The answers provided by the astronomers are disconcerting and remarkable. Most remarkable of all is the fact that in science, as in the Bible, the world begins with an act of creation.”

–Astronomer Robert Jastrow from Until the Sun Dies

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Then, last week, American scientists announced the discovery of radiation patterns in space that may mark the beginning of time itself. Said astrophysicist George Smoot, leader of the research team: “If you’re religious, it’s like looking at God.  The order is so beautiful and the symmetry so beautiful that you think there is some design behind it.”

“Whatever caused the rapid expansion of the universe following the Big Bang–the same forces caused tiny ripples. Because if you try to do something too fast, you shake a little. God might be the designer. “

–Maclean’s, May 4, 1992 (the two above quotes are by astrophysicist and cosmologist George Smoot).

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“Recently I have gone back to church regularly with a new focus to understand as best I can what it is that makes Christianity so vital and powerful in the lives of billions of people today, even though almost 2000 years have passed since the death and resurrection of Christ. Although I suspect I will never fully understand, I now think the answer is very simple: it’s true. God did create the universe about 13.7 billion years ago, and of necessity has involved Himself with His creation ever since. The purpose of this universe is something that only God knows for sure, but it is increasingly clear to modern science that the universe was exquisitely fine-tuned to enable human life. We are somehow critically involved in His purpose. Our job is to sense that purpose as best we can, love one another, and help Him get that job done.” (Smalley 2005)

Richard Smalley, winner of the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the discovery of a new form of carbon (buckminsterfullerene or “buckyballs”).

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“Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe–a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.”

“In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.”

–Albert Einstein

Clark, Ronald W. (1971). Einstein: The Life and Times. New York: World Publishing Company

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“This much I can say with definiteness – namely, that there is no scientific basis for the denial of religion – nor is there in my judgment any excuse for a conflict between science and religion, for their fields are entirely different. Men who know very little of science and men who know very little of religion do indeed get to quarreling, and the onlookers imagine that there is a conflict between science and religion, whereas the conflict is only between two different species of ignorance.”

“The first important quarrel of this sort arose over the advancing by Copernicus of his theory that the earth, instead of being a flat plane and the center of the universe, was actually only one of a number of little planets, rotating once a day upon its axis and circling once a year about the sun. Copernicus was a priest – the canon of a cathedral – and he was primarily a religious rather than a scientific man. He knew that the foundations of real religion are not laid where scientific discoveries of any kind can disturb them. He was persecuted, not because he went against the teachings of religion but because under his theory man was not the center of the universe and this was most displeasing news to a number of egoists.”

“To me it is unthinkable that a real atheist could be a scientist.”

“Religion and science, then, in my analysis are the two great sister forces which have pulled, and are still pulling, mankind onward and upward.”

“The impossibility of real science and real religion ever conflicting becomes evident when one examines the purpose of science and the purpose of religion. The purpose of science is to develop – without prejudice or preconception of any kind – a knowledge of the facts, the laws and the processes of nature. The even more important task of religion, on the other hand, is to develop the consciences, the ideals and the aspirations of mankind.”

Robert Andrews Millikan, who won the 1923 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on the elementary charge of electricity and on the photoelectric effect.

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“I strongly believe in the existence of God, based on intuition, observations, logic, and also scientific knowledge.”

“Science, with its experiments and logic, tries to understand the order or structure of the universe. Religion, with its theological inspiration and reflection, tries to understand the purpose or meaning of the universe. These two are cross-related. Purpose implies structure, and structure ought somehow to be interpretable in terms of purpose.”

“At least this is the way I see it. I am a physicist. I also consider myself a Christian. As I try to understand the nature of our universe in these two modes of thinking, I see many commonalities and crossovers between science and religion. It seems logical that in the long run the two will even converge.”

–Charles Hard Townes, who received the 1964 Nobel Prize in Physics for his fundamental work in the field of quantum electronics.

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“I believe in God. In fact, I believe in a personal God who acts in and interacts with the creation. I believe that the observations about the orderliness of the physical universe, and the apparently exceptional fine-tuning of the conditions of the universe for the development of life suggest that an intelligent Creator is responsible.”

“I believe in God because of a personal faith, a faith that is consistent with what I know about science.”

“Being an ordinary scientist and an ordinary Christian seems perfectly natural to me. It is also perfectly natural for the many scientists I know who are also people of deep religious faith.”

William D. Phillips, who won the 1997 Nobel Prize in Physics for development of methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light.

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“Science is experimental, moving forward step-by-step, making trial and learning through success and failure. Is not this also the way of religion, and especially of the Christian religion? The writings of those who preach the religion have from the very beginning insisted that it is to be proved by experience. If a man is drawn towards honour and courage and endurance, justice, mercy, and charity, let him follow the way of Christ and find out for himself. No findings in science hinder him in that way.”

–William Henry Bragg, winner of the 1915 Nobel Prize in Physics for his contribution to the analysis of crystal structures by means of X-rays.

Bragg’s daughter Gwendolen Mary Caroe wrote about her father’s faith:

“Religious faith to W. H. Bragg was the willingness to stake his all on the hypothesis that Christ was right, and test it by a lifetime’s experiment in charity.”

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“The more I work with the powers of Nature, the more I feel God’s benevolence to man; the closer I am to the great truth that everything is dependent on the Eternal Creator and Sustainer; the more I feel that the so-called science, I am occupied with, is nothing but an expression of the Supreme Will, which aims at bringing people closer to each other in order to help them better understand and improve themselves.”

“I am proud to be a Christian. I believe not only as a Christian, but as a scientist as well. A wireless device can deliver a message through the wilderness. In prayer the human spirit can send invisible waves to eternity, waves that achieve their goal in front of God.”

Guglielmo Marconi, winner of the 1909 Nobel Prize in Physics for his invention of the first successful system of wireless telegraphy. Marconi is the inventor of the radio; his revolutionary work made possible the electronic communications of the modern world.

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“I believe in God, who can respond to prayers, to whom we can give trust and without whom life on this earth would be without meaning (a tale told by an idiot). I believe that God has revealed Himself to us in many ways and through many men and women, and that for us here in the West the clearest revelation is through Jesus and those that have followed him.”

Sir Nevill Mott, recipient of the 1977 Nobel Prize in Physics for his research on the magnetic and electrical properties of noncrystalline semiconductors.

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“Physics filled me with awe, put me in touch with a sense of original causes. Physics brought me closer to God. That feeling stayed with me throughout my years in science. Whenever one of my students came to me with a scientific project, I asked only one question, ‘Will it bring you nearer to God?’ ”

Isidor Isaac Rabi, who won the 1944 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on the magnetic properties of atomic nuclei.

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“Science is a game – but a game with reality, a game with sharpened knives. If a man cuts a picture carefully into 1000 pieces, you solve the puzzle when you reassemble the pieces into a picture; in the success or failure, both your intelligences compete. In the presentation of a scientific problem, the other player is the good Lord. He has not only set the problem but also has devised the rules of the game – but they are not completely known, half of them are left for you to discover or to deduce. The uncertainty is how many of the rules God himself has permanently ordained, and how many apparently are caused by your own mental inertia, while the solution generally becomes possible only through freedom from its limitations. This is perhaps the most exciting thing in the game.”

Erwin Schroedinger, winner of the 1933 Nobel Prize in Physics “for the discovery of new productive forms of atomic theory.”

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“I believe in God. It makes no sense to me to assume that the Universe and our existence is just a cosmic accident, that life emerged due to random physical processes in an environment which simply happened to have the right properties. As a Christian I begin to comprehend what life is all about through belief in a Creator, some of whose nature was revealed by a man born about 2000 years ago.”

Antony Hewish, winner of the 1974 Nobel Prize in Physics for his discovery of pulsars.

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“Blind metaphysical necessity, which is certainly the same always and everywhere, could produce no variety of things. All that diversity of natural things which we find suited to different times and places could arise from nothing but the ideas and will of a Being, necessarily existing.”

Sir Isaac Newton, who is widely regarded to have been the greatest scientist of all time, as cited in Principia, which is perhaps the most important scientific work of all time.

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Jesus knows our world. He does not disdain us like the God of Aristotle. We can speak to Him and He answers us. Although He is a person like ourselves, He is God and transcends all things.”

Alexis Carrel, who won the 1912 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology “for his work on vascular suturing and the transplantation of blood-vessels and organs,” as quoted in his book Reflections on Life

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“Science and religion are very much alike. Both are imaginative and creative aspects of the human mind. The appearance of a conflict is a result of ignorance. We come to exist through a divine act. That divine guidance is a theme throughout our life; at our death the brain goes, but that divine guidance and love continues. Each of us is a unique, conscious being, a divine creation. It is the religious view. It is the only view consistent with all the evidence.”

Sir John Eccles, who received the 1963 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for establishing the relationship between inhibition of nerve cells and repolarization of a cell’s membrane.

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“Is the Church inimical to science? Growing up as a Catholic and a scientist – I don’t see it. One truth is revealed truth, the other is scientific truth. If you really believe that creation is good, there can be no harm in studying science. The more we learn about creation – the way it emerged – it just adds to the glory of God. Personally, I’ve never seen a conflict.”

Joseph E. Murray, winner of the 1990 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for work that “proved to a doubting world that it was possible to transplant organs to save the lives of dying patients.”

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“Atoms are weird stuff, behaving like active agents rather than inert substances. They make unpredictable choices between alternative possibilities according to the laws of quantum mechanics. It appears that mind, as manifested by the capacity to make choices, is to some extent inherent in every atom. The universe is also weird, with its laws of nature that make it hospitable to the growth of mind. I do not make any clear distinction between mind and God. God is what mind becomes when it passes beyond the scale of our comprehension.”

–Princeton University quantum physicist Freeman Dyson.

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“I find it quite improbable that such order came out of chaos. There has to be some organizing principle. God to me is a mystery but is the explanation for the miracle of existence, why there is something instead of nothing.”

–Astronomer Allan Sandage, winner of the Crafoord Prize in astronomy (which is equivalent to the Nobel Prize). Sandage is considered to be one of the founders of modern astronomy and was widely regarded to be the world’s greatest cosmologist until his death in 2010. He came to belief in God as a result of his science, as he announced at a conference on the origin of the universe in 1985. He also became a Christian.

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“We know that nature is described by the best of all possible mathematics because God created it. So there is a chance that the best of all possible mathematics will be created out of physicists’ attempts to describe nature.”

–Russian theoretical physicist Alexander Polyakov, winner of the Lars Onsager prize in 2011, the Dirac Medal and the Dannie Heineman Prize for Mathematical Physics in 1986, the Lorentz Medal in 1994, and the Oskar Klein Medal in 1996.

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“If we need an atheist for a debate, we go to the philosophy department. The physics department isn’t much use.”

Robert Griffiths, winner of the Heinemann Prize in mathematical physics.

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“For many years I have believed that God is the great designer behind all nature… All my studies in science since then have confirmed my faith. I regard the Bible as my principle source of authority.”

Sir Ghillean T. Prance, the knighted British botanist and ecologist, Fellow of the Royal Society.

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“I build molecules for a living. I can’t begin to tell you how difficult that job is. I stand in awe of God because of what he has done through his creation. My faith has been increased through my research. Only a rookie who knows nothing about science would say science takes away from faith. If you really study science, it will bring you closer to God.”

James Tour, one of the world’s leading nanoscientists

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“The common belief that… the actual relations between religion and science over the last few centuries have been marked by deep and enduring hostility… is not only historically inaccurate, but actually a caricature so grotesque that what needs to be explained is how it could possibly have achieved any degree of respectability.”

–Cambridge University historian of science Colin Russell

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“An equation for me has no meaning unless it expresses a thought of God.”

–Srinivasa Ramanujam, who is widely regarded to be one of the greatest mathematicians of all time (on a similar plane with such greats as Archimedes and Newton).

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“God is Truth. There is no incompatibility between science and religion. Both are seeking the same truth. Science shows that God exists.”

“The observations and experiments of science are so wonderful that the truth that they establish can surely be accepted as another manifestation of God. God shows himself by allowing man to establish truth.”

–Sir Derek Barton, winner of the 1969 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, as quoted in Cosmos, Bios, Theos: Scientists Reflect on Science, God, and the Origins of the Universe, Life, and Homo sapiens.

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To the question, “What do you think should be the relationship between science and religion?” Walter Kohn replied: “Mutual respect. They are complementary important parts of the human experience.” (Kohn 2002).

And to the inquiry, “What do you think about the existence of God?” Walter Kohn gave the following answer: “There are essential parts of the human experience about which science intrinsically has nothing to say. I associate them with an entity which I call God.” (Kohn 2002).

Walter Kohn was the winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for contributions to the understandings of the electronic properties of materials..

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“The vast mysteries of the universe should only confirm our belief in the certainty of its Creator. I find it as difficult to understand a scientist who does not acknowledge the presence of a superior rationality behind the existence of the universe as it is to comprehend a theologian who would deny the advances of science.”

“They (evolutionists) challenge science to prove the existence of God. But must we really light a candle to see the sun? They say they cannot visualize a Designer. Well, can a physicist visualize an electron? What strange rationale makes some physicists accept the inconceivable electron as real while refusing to accept the reality of a Designer on the grounds that they cannot conceive Him?”

“God deliberately reduced Himself to the stature of humanity in order to visit the earth in person, because the cumulative effect over the centuries of millions of individuals choosing to please themselves rather than God had infected the whole planet. When God became a man Himself, the experience proved to be nothing short of pure agony.  In man’s time-honored fashion, they would unleash the whole arsenal of weapons against Him: misrepresentation, slander, and accusation of treason. The stage was set for a situation without parallel in the history of the earth.  God would visit creatures and they would nail Him to the cross!”

“Although I know of no reference to Christ ever commenting on scientific work, I do know that He said, “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Thus I am certain that, were He among us today, Christ would encourage scientific research as modern man’s most noble striving to comprehend and admire His Father’s handiwork. The universe as revealed through scientific inquiry is the living witness that God has indeed been at work.”

Werner von Braun, the father of space science and the most important rocket scientist involved in the development of the U.S. space program.

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“There is no ground for supposing that matter and energy existed before [the Big Bang] and were suddenly galvanized into action.  For what could distinguish that moment from all other moments in eternity? It is simpler to postulate creation ex nihilo—Divine will constituting Nature from nothingness.”

–English mathematical physicist Edmund T. Whittaker, winner of the Copley Medal, which is the most prestigious award in British science.

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“The universe is a put-up job.”

— Cambridge University astrophysicist Fred Hoyle, referring to the fine tuning of the laws of nature which he felt “could not be just a happy accident,” as his Cambridge colleague John Polkinghorne put it in Quarks, Chaos, and Christianity.

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“If the universe had not been made with the most exacting precision we could never have come into existence. It is my view that these circumstances indicate the universe was created for man to live in.”

–Harvard educated NASA astrophysicist John A. O’Keefe.

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“Why do people cling with such ferocity to belief in a mind-independent reality? It is surely because if there is no such reality, then ultimately (as far as we can know) mind alone exists. And if mind is not a product of real matter, but rather is the creator of the illusion of material reality (which has, in fact, despite the materialists, been known to be the case, since the discovery of quantum mechanics in 1925), then a theistic view of our existence becomes the only rational alternative to solipsism.” [“Solipsism” is defined as “the view or theory that the self is all that can be known to exist.”]

–Physicist Richard Conn Henry from Johns Hopkins University

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“This now tells how precise the Creator’s aim must have been, namely to an accuracy of one part in 10, to the power of 10, to the power of 123. This is an extraordinary figure. One could not possibly even write the number down in full in the ordinary denary notation: it would be 1 followed by 10 to the power of 123 successive 0’s. Even if we were to write a 0 on each separate proton and on each separate neutron in the entire universe- and we could throw in all the other particles for good measure- we should fall far short of writing down the figure needed.”

–Oxford University mathematical physicist, mathematician, and philosopher of science Roger Penrose, as cited in his book The Emperor’s New Mind. Penrose has received a number of prizes and awards, including the 1988 Wolf Prize for physics, which he shared with Stephen Hawking for their contribution to our understanding of the universe.

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“In a quiet revolution in thought and argument that hardly anyone would have foreseen only two decades ago, God is making a comeback. Most intriguingly this is happening…in the crisp intellectual circles of academic philosophers.”

Time magazine, April 1980

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“There are good reasons to believe in God, including the existence of mathematical principles and order in creation. They are positive reasons, based on knowledge, rather than default assumptions based on a temporary lack of knowledge.”

–Geneticist Francis Collins, the leader of the Human Genome Project and currently the director of the National Institutes of Health in the United States.

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“…We then examine a particular coding system in DNA and discover that UI [universal information] is conveyed within the genes. Using this DNA evidence and scientific laws governing UI as premises, we are able to develop sound, logical deductions. This leads us to the following conclusion: the God of the Bible exists and He is responsible for originating and embedding Universal Information into biological life.”

Werner Gitt, Director and Professor at the German Federal Institute of Physics and Technology, Germany. Gitt is also the head of the Department of Information Technology. The above is an excerpt from the introduction to his book Without Excuse, in which he utilizes the insights of information science to demonstrate that the origin of life can only be explained as the result of a conscious, intelligent creator. Please see my essay How Atheism Relies on Special Pleading, in which I cite Gitt’s skillful explanations.

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“God created the universe out of nothing in an act which also brought time into existence. Recent discoveries, such as observations supporting the Big Bang and similar astronomical phenomena, are wholly compatible with this view.”

–Henry Margenau, Yale University Professor of Physics and Natural Philosophy, as cited in Cosmos, Bios, Theos: Scientists Reflect on Science, God, and the Origins of the Universe, Life, and Homo Sapiens.

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“I think that God originated the universe and life. Homo Sapiens was created by God using the process that does not violate the physical laws of the universe significantly or none at all. (Hidden variables of quantum mechanics under God’s power?)”

–Shoichi Yoshikawa, Senior Research Scientist and Professor, Department of Astrophysical Sciences, Princeton University, as cited in Cosmos, Bios, Theos: Scientists Reflect on Science, God, and the Origins of the Universe, Life, and Homo Sapiens.

 
 

——————————————————

 

***Lastly, AND PERHAPS MOST IMPORTANTLY please read this post which describes how science itself owes it’s origins to Christianity.  The leading philosopher of science (and Distinguished Professor of Physics at Seton Hall University) Stanley Jaki explores this subject matter in detail, as can be seen by clicking on the preceding link. Please read Jaki’s books Christ and Science and The Savior of Science for a more thorough exploration of this subject.

Readers:  Please note that several of the quotes featured in this post were extracted from nobelists.net.  For a more exhaustive list of God believing scientists and Nobel Laureates (including exact citations), please visit this site and download the pdf.



169 comments


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    Son of man says:

    Hello everyone, please seek a personal relationship with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, the Son of God. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. – John 3:16


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      Jim says:

      There is no god and science, never was. If anything, nothing else has hindered the advancement in knowledge and science like the Christian religion.


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        Steve says:

        you lie..


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        Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

        Jim,

        The idea that Christianity hinders science is an urban legend with no basis whatsoever in reality. In fact, the reality is that there is a rich and flourishing dialogue regarding the interaction of faith and science within academia…so much so, in fact, that both Cambridge and Oxford Universities have set up chairs of Science and Religion in recent years.

        I highly recommend an article titled Christianity is a science-starter, not a science-stopper. (Click the preceding link). This article demonstrates how the Christian worldview was necessary for the rise of science. It is no mere coincidence that science arose in Christian Europe, but failed to develop in a host of other cultures.

        An excerpt:

        In the biblical worldview, scientific investigation of nature became both a calling and an obligation. As historian John Hedley Brooke explains, the early scientists “would often argue that God had revealed himself in two books—the book of His words (the Bible) and the book of His works (nature). As one was under obligation to study the former, so too there was an obligation to study the latter.”[21] The rise of modern science cannot be explained apart from the Christian view of nature as good and worthy of study, which led the early scientists to regard their work as obedience to the cultural mandate to “till the garden.”

        The War That Wasn’t:

        Today the majority of historians of science agree with this positive assessment of the impact the Christian worldview had on the rise of science. Yet even highly educated people remain ignorant of this fact. Why is that?

        The answer is that history was founded as a modern discipline by Enlightenment figures such as Voltaire, Gibbon, and Hume who had a very specific agenda: They wanted to discredit Christianity while promoting rationalism.

        Oxford University Professor of Science and Religion Peter Harrison writes:

        “Those who have magnified more recent controversies about the relations of science and religion, and who have projected them back into historical time, simply perpetuate a historical myth. The myth of a perennial conflict between science and religion is one to which no historian of science would subscribe.”

        Cambridge University historian of science Colin Russell is even more blunt:

        “The common belief that… the actual relations between religion and science over the last few centuries have been marked by deep and enduring hostility… is not only historically inaccurate, but actually a caricature so grotesque that what needs to be explained is how it could possibly have achieved any degree of respectability.”

        Jim, I challenge you to provide even a single example of how Christianity has hindered the advancement of science. Please cite an historian from an accredited university to support your example. Hint: You won’t, because you can’t, because there are no historians from accredited universities who support your view.

        Scott


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          Jim Chase says:

          Scott Youngren commented on Quotes about God to consider…if you think science leads to atheism..
          in response to Jim:
          There is no god and science, never was. If anything, nothing else has hindered the advancement in knowledge and science like the Christian religion.
          Jim,
          The idea that Christianity hinders science is an urban legend with no basis whatsoever in reality. In fact, the reality is that there is a rich and flourishing dialogue regarding the interaction of faith and science within academia…so much so, in fact, that both Cambridge and Oxford Universities have set up chairs of Science and Religion in recent years.

          Answer: LOL, well now let’s look at your affirmation of consequent while it appears to be seated in an ad hoc, shall we? The translation of your claim is that within non accredited parts of an accredited institution “has now” let science in…..is this a correct analogy do you think? Without a clear perspective, I doubt we can go much further.

          I highly recommend an article titled Christianity is a science-starter, not a science-stopper. (Click the preceding link). This article demonstrates how the Christian worldview was necessary for the rise of science. It is no mere coincidence that science arose in Christian Europe, but failed to develop in a host of other cultures.
          An excerpt:
          In the biblical worldview, scientific investigation of nature became both a calling and an obligation. As historian John Hedley Brooke explains, the early scientists “would often argue that God had revealed himself in two books—the book of His words (the Bible) and the book of His works (nature). As one was under obligation to study the former, so too there was an obligation to study the latter.”[21] The rise of modern science cannot be explained apart from the Christian view of nature as good and worthy of study, which led the early scientists to regard their work as obedience to the cultural mandate to “till the garden.”
          The War That Wasn’t:
          Today the majority of historians of science agree with this positive assessment of the impact the Christian worldview had on the rise of science. Yet even highly educated people remain ignorant of this fact. Why is that?
          The answer is that history was founded as a modern discipline by Enlightenment figures such as Voltaire, Gibbon, and Hume who had a very specific agenda: They wanted to discredit Christianity while promoting rationalism.
          Oxford University Professor of Science and Religion Peter Harrison writes:
          “Those who have magnified more recent controversies about the relations of science and religion, and who have projected them back into historical time, simply perpetuate a historical myth. The myth of a perennial conflict between science and religion is one to which no historian of science would subscribe.”
          Cambridge University historian of science Colin Russell is even more blunt:
          “The common belief that… the actual relations between religion and science over the last few centuries have been marked by deep and enduring hostility… is not only historically inaccurate, but actually a caricature so grotesque that what needs to be explained is how it could possibly have achieved any degree of respectability.”

          Answer: Your post here seems to merit my OP, are you sure this is what you wanted? Other than that you have other believers that believe as you do….and without support of an inference for their premise, I see nothing…..sorry, but argument from ignorance doesn’t qualify your position at all and let’s face it, had there been any earth shattering news to be had here you would have quoted it after you sourced.

          Jim, I challenge you to provide even a single example of how Christianity has hindered the advancement of science.

          Answer: I cannot, I can offer a a diatribe of multiple examples however, would this be okay?

          Please cite an historian from an accredited university to support your example.

          Answer: I cannot since I haven’t given one yet or are you asking me to support my OP? In that case I cite the very Universities that you list….now what?

          Hint: You won’t, because you can’t, because there are no historians from accredited universities who support your view.
          Scott

          Answer: I see, so you would not have accepted the answer in the first place making your challenge/question disingenuous.
          Don’t worry, I’ve grown accustom to this and expect it every time a Christian weighs in or at least thinks he has. Shall we start with your flat earth god or child sex slavery or abortion and the statistics manipulations (out and out lies really) or how AIDS is increasing in the Countries of Africa or how the Church’s profiteering helped usher in the Dark ages the Nazi party’s enlightenment….. I just don’t where to start. You did mention modern universities that still cannot teach their non accredited satire anywhere except from with in the confines of one of their 43000 denominational constructs. Scott, I am afraid everything in your bible is just as invalid and could never stand the test of daylight, let alone science. Would you like to explore the absolute absurdities of the story of Jesus? Nothing insults higher learning let alone common sense like the story of Jesus or would I have to find an acceptable historian to cut and paste before going my accreditation?
          My point is this….you are already accusing me of conformation bias and then attempting to replace it with your own. It doesn’t work like that and history shows us what you don’t want to deal with here….good luck.


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    Terry S says:

    Einstein Quote:

    I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with the fates and actions of human beings. (Albert Einstein) Following his wife’s advice in responding to Rabbi Herbert Goldstein of the International Synagogue in New York, who had sent Einstein a cablegram bluntly demanding Do you believe in God? Quoted from and citation notes derived from Victor J. Stenger, Has Science Found God? (draft: 2001), chapter 3.


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Yes, that is a valid Einstein quote. Einstein clearly and unmistakably DID believe in God, but not a personal God (he was a deist).

      Because physics is the field of science that deals with the most fundamental “big picture” aspects of our reality, a physicists opinion must be weighted heavily when considering questions such as whether it is consciousness or matter that is most fundamental (as I discuss in this essay). Consciousness is more fundamental and therefore, as the physicist, mathematician and astronomer James Jeans put it, “This brings us very near to those philosophical systems which regard the universe as a thought in the mind of its Creator, thereby reducing all discussion of material creation to futility.”

      So a physicist is uniquely qualified to comment on the scientific support for the existence of God. But when it comes to the specific attributes of God (such as whether God is personal or impersonal), a physicist has no particular qualification to comment authoritatively.

      Therefore, we should accept Einstein’s belief in God as having significance, but not his opinion that God is impersonal.


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    Charles says:

    Awesome site! Keep up the great work. Praise God in the name of our savior Jesus Christ!!

    Psalm 95:1-11
    Oh come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods. In his hand are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains are his also. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land.


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      Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Amen brother!


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    Bizbird6 says:

    • God NEVER created something from nothing. The Bible is a book of fiction with no proof at all.

    There is NOT even proof that God exist!

    The Universe does NOT need to be created. It was NEVER created.

    The Universe always existed, while God has NEVER existed.


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      Jim Chase says:

      Agreed and there is absolutely no reason to believe that Jesus ever existed, in fact one could clearly extrapolate that he did not.


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        Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

        Jim,

        The idea that Jesus never existed is another perfect example of a fallacy that thrives on atheist forums, despite not having any credible basis in reality.

        To this end, I cite Bart Ehrman, who is a famous biblical scholar, agnostic, and SKEPTIC of Christianity…not a Christian.



        Please watch the above video. As Ehrman puts it, “I don’t think there is any serious historian who doubts the existence of Jesus.”

        The evidence for Jesus existence is overwhelming just from NON-CHRISTIAN sources. Please click here to read about a few of these non-Christian sources, such as the ancient Roman historian Tacitus, the ancient Roman historian Pliny the Younger, the ancient Jewish historian Josephus, the Babylonian Talmud, etc.

        Jim, I challenge you to cite a single historian from an accredited university who doubts the existence of Jesus. Again, you won’t, because you can’t, because there aren’t any. But go ahead and try to prove me wrong.

        Scott


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          Jim Chase says:

          Scott Youngren commented on Quotes about God to consider…if you think science leads to atheism..
          in response to Jim Chase:
          Agreed and there is absolutely no reason to believe that Jesus ever existed, in fact one could clearly extrapolate that he did not.
          Jim,

          Scott states:

          The idea that Jesus never existed is another perfect example of a fallacy that thrives on atheist forums, despite not having any credible basis in reality.

          Answer: First off, you yourself cannot list one reason to WHY you believe in this nonsense so don’t pretend to be able to judge others in this category…okay? Unless you are going to base your belief in what Bart Ehrman you are just rambling semi coherent. Second point, people that have magical, invisible, imaginary friends that only they can see and hear are not allowed to make judgment calls on reality…we good?

          To this end, I will cite Bart Ehrman, who is a famous biblical scholar, agnostic, and SKEPTIC of Christianity…not a Christian.
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9CC7qNZkOE
          Please watch the above video. As Ehrman puts it, “I don’t think there is any serious historian who doubts the existence of Jesus.”
          The evidence for Jesus existence is overwhelming just from NON-CHRISTIAN sources. Please click here to read about a few of these non-Christian sources, such as the ancient Roman historian Tacitus, the ancient Roman historian Pliny the Younger, the ancient Jewish historian Josephus, the Babylonian Talmud, etc.

          Answer: What Bart Ehrman believes and is not supported is completely irrelevant in the REAL WORLD. Second point, Bart Ehrman never supports his beliefs in this area and you simply requiring me to bear the burden of proof and read until I can support your ignorance ion the matter is incomprehensible.

          Jim, I challenge you to cite a single historian from an accredited university who doubts the existence of Jesus.

          Answer: Dear religatard, you first! I challenge you to cite Bart Ehrman and the historian Bart Ehrman cites in the matter. Your problem now is that I’ve run into this Christian lie before….we good?

          Again, you won’t, because you can’t, because there aren’t any. But go ahead and try to prove me wrong.
          Scott

          Answer: I doubt that I can prove anything to someone that will refuse to learn…in short, a religatard. Prayers never bring anything… They may bring solace to the sap, the bigot, the ignorant, the aboriginal, and the lazy – but to the enlightened it is the same as asking Santa Claus to bring you something for Xmas.
          –W. C. Fields


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            Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

            Jim,

            Much as a nervous tick made by a poker player is a “tell” that he is holding a weak hand (and is bluffing), the use of angry name calling (“religatard”) is a “tell” that you are angry because you realize that your argument has fallen apart.

            So go ahead and continue the name calling…every time that you do so, you are just further advertising the fact that you realize your argument has fallen apart. Further, all third-party viewers of this discussion now realize that you hold your apparently atheistic views for emotional and psychological reasons, rather than logical reasons. Logical arguments consist of logic, and do not rely on angry name calling…no matter how you slice it.

            All intelligent third-party viewer of this discussion can see that you are trying to use name calling to distract attention from your lack of a coherent argument.

            You say that I cannot list one reason for my belief in the historical fact of Jesus’ life. But I already have: There is a consensus among historians of his existence…INCLUDING HISTORIANS WHO ARE HOSTILE TOWARDS THE BIBLE.

            Scott


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              Jim Chase says:

               on Quotes about God to consider…if you think science leads to atheism..
              in response to Jim Chase:
              Scott Youngren commented on Quotes about God to consider…if you think science leads to atheism.. in response to Jim Chase: Agreed and there is absolutely no reason to believe that Jesus ever existed, in fact one could clearly extrapolate that he did not. Jim, Scott states: The idea that Jesus never existed is another perfect example of a fallacy […]
              Jim,
              Much as a nervous tick made by a poker player is a “tell” that he is holding a weak hand (and is bluffing), the use of angry name calling (“religatard”) is a “tell” that you are angry because you realize that your argument has fallen apart.

              Answer: Religatard, someone who refuses to learn or is slow to repeat knowledge that doesn’t support his illness that is religion. Unlike yourself, I spent my time in school and very little playing poker.

              So go ahead and continue the name calling…every time that you do so, you are just further advertising the fact that you realize your argument has fallen apart.

              Answer: Dear religatard, no argument exists, just your assertion through a conditional statement while thinking that you’ve allowed yourself to have begged the proverbial question and then believing that you have formulated valid argument.

              Further, all third-party viewers of this discussion now realize that you hold your apparently atheistic views for emotional and psychological reasons, rather than logical reasons.

              Answer: I see, so when the core beliefs I had in Christianity were dispersed by study and the knowledge gained within caused me to realize that the bible and it’s many religion were false is NOW causing a psychological disorder because of your still intact false religious core beliefs…..sure, okay. Question, which one us has a degree in Psychology?

              Logical arguments consist of logic, and do not rely on angry name calling…no matter how you slice it.

              Answer: The term you were looking for and were not knowledgeable of is ad hominem: Latin for “to the man.” An arguer who uses ad hominems attacks the person instead of the argument. Whenever an arguer cannot defend his position with evidence, facts or reason, he or she may resort to attacking an opponent either through: labeling, straw man arguments, name calling, offensive remarks and anger. I am calling you names because of your lack of argument and support. You assert that historians claim a historical Jesus WITHOUT citation or quote to which my response is this…..your sources say that you spend to much time smoking Jesus and that you were not to be trusted. Now prove they didn’t and don’t you DARE ask me to support this statement any further because we are now operating in accordance to the standards you are attempting to enforce!

              All intelligent third-party viewer of this discussion can see that you are trying to use name calling to distract attention from your lack of a coherent argument.

              Answer: Third party believer has no more education on the topic than you do apparently so your argumentum ad populum is therefore denied.

              You say that I cannot list one reason for my belief in the historical fact of Jesus’ life.

              Answer: Because you cannot!

              But I already have: There is a consensus among historians of his existence…INCLUDING HISTORIANS WHO ARE HOSTILE TOWARDS THE BIBLE.

              Answer: …and you cannot list a quote from any of these sources that give you cause to believe that a historical Jesus exists. Do you get dizzy going around in circles with your reasoning, you should! Now man up of shut the fuck up because your stupidity on the subject is still pissing me off which is a normal response in the real world religatard.


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            Jim Chase says:

            PS, The evidence for Jesus existence is overwhelming just from NON-CHRISTIAN sources. Please click here to read about a few of these non-Christian sources, such as the ancient Roman historian Tacitus, the ancient Roman historian Pliny the Younger, the ancient Jewish historian Josephus, the Babylonian Talmud, etc.
            Your sources were not contemporaries of Jesus and no contemporary has ever came forward and as Jesus never published he is not a historical entity. No historian would ever claim this which leads us to believe in the fallacy that of these historians ever having legitimately been found making these claims for historical purposes. No non-wand passing out in the first semester accredited school has ever claimed anything different….so grow up!


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              Michael Hurwitz says:

              As an impartial witness and a Deist, with no dog in the fight, there are virtually no serious historians who doubt the veracity of the historical Jesus. Paul’s letters alone are important historical documents.


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              Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Jim,

              No, we have many historical sources for Jesus which are very much contemporary to Jesus. Please click here to read another article about the non-Christian sources for the historical fact of Jesus’ life. An excerpt:

              These references outside the Bible have led historians to a consensus—Jesus was a real person. Even Bart Ehrman, one of the most zealous critics of the Bible alive today, acknowledges Jesus lived. He wrote:

              “With respect to Jesus, we have numerous, independent accounts of his life in the sources lying behind the Gospels (and the writings of Paul)—sources that originated in Jesus’ native tongue Aramaic and that can be dated to within just a year or two of his life…Historical sources like that are pretty astounding for an ancient figure of any kind…the claim that Jesus was simply made up falters on every ground.”

              Further, are you going to argue that multiple non-Christian sources independently invented the life of Jesus?

              Once again, Jim, I challenge you to cite a single historian from an accredited university who will support your view that Jesus never existed. If such an historian exists, he/she should be very easy to find in an age of internet search engines.

              As I said: You will not cite an historian to support your view, because you cannot, because no such historian exists. Period. Game over.

              And all of this highlights one of my fundamental points: There is often a huge disconnect between reality, on one hand, and what circulates on atheist forums and in atheist books, on the other hand.

              Scott


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                Jim Chase says:

                No historian or accredited institution claims Jesus was a historical entity and you cannot show me one that has. All you have offered is your assertion that your supposed sources has….and this is a lie! It’s your burden of proof little one as the claim of a historical Jesus starts with you. Now let’s talk about you…..YOU have never attended any of this institutions or read anything that claims there is a historical Jesus!


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                  Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

                  Jim,

                  No, sorry, there are plenty of historians from accredited institutions who claim Jesus was an historical entity.

                  Click here to read another article. An excerpt:

                  Secular historians, whether christian or not, broadly agree on the basic facts of Jesus’ life (see Jesus in history). EP Sanders [from Duke University], just about the most respected NT scholar of the past 30 years, and cautiously skeptical, wrote in The Historical Figure of Jesus, p10-11:

                  I shall first offer a list of statements about Jesus that meet two standards: they are almost beyond dispute; and they belong to the framework of his life, and especially of his public career. (A list of everything that we know about Jesus would be appreciably longer.)

                  Jesus was born c 4 BCE near the time of the death of Herod the Great;
                  he spent his childhood and early adult years in Nazareth, a Galilean village;
                  he was baptised by John the Baptist;
                  he called disciples;
                  he taught in the towns, villages and countryside of Galilee (apparently not the cities);
                  he preached ‘the kingdom of God’;
                  about the year 30 he went to Jerusalem for Passover;
                  he created a disturbance in the Temple area;
                  he had a final meal with the disciples;
                  he was arrested and interrogated by Jewish authorities, specifically the high priest;
                  he was executed on the orders of the Roman prefect, Pontius Pilate.

                  Maurice Casey (University of Nottingham) and Michael Grant add a few other items to Sanders’ cautious list:

                  he preached repentance, forgiveness and the coming of the kingdom of God in rural and small-town Galilee;
                  he was known in his day as a healer and exorcist (Casey says he was a folk healer);
                  Jesus predicted his death and resurrection and he believed his death would be redemptive;
                  Jesus’ tomb was really empty and/or his disciples “saw” him (in what sense is uncertain) after his death.

                  Scott


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                    Jim Chase says:

                    Scott Youngren commented on Quotes about God to consider…if you think science leads to atheism..
                    in response to Jim Chase:
                    No historian or accredited institution claims Jesus was a historical entity and you cannot show me one that has. All you have offered is your assertion that your supposed sources has….and this is a lie! It’s your burden of proof little one as the claim of a historical Jesus starts with you. Now let’s talk […]
                    Jim,
                    No, sorry, there are plenty of historians from accredited institutions who claim Jesus was an historical entity.

                    Answer: NO, not a one and you’re assertion is just that, an assertion! If this were NOT TRUE you would have proved a quote and citation already!

                    Click here to read another article. An excerpt:
                    Secular historians, whether christian or not, broadly agree on the basic facts of Jesus’ life (see Jesus in history).

                    Answer: Mr Secular Historian recanted on his death bed. His last words were “Scott is not to be trusted”.

                    EP Sanders [from Duke University], just about the most respected NT scholar of the past 30 years, and cautiously skeptical, wrote in The Historical Figure of Jesus, p10-11:
                    I shall first offer a list of statements about Jesus that meet two standards: they are almost beyond dispute; and they belong to the framework of his life, and especially of his public career. (A list of everything that we know about Jesus would be appreciably longer.)

                    Answer: Anthropologically speaking!

                    Jesus was born c 4 BCE near the time of the death of Herod the Great;
                    he spent his childhood and early adult years in Nazareth, a Galilean village;
                    he was baptised by John the Baptist;

                    Answer: To bad neither Nazareth didn’t exist then except in the anthropologically speaking context!

                    The Lost City 
                    The Gospels tell us that Jesus’s home town was the ‘City of Nazareth’ (‘polis Natzoree’):

                    And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a CITY of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.
                    (Luke1.26,27)
                    And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the CITY of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; because he was of the house and lineage of David:
                    (Luke 2.3,4)
                    But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee: And he came and dwelt in a CITY called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.
                    (Matthew 2.22,23)

                    And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own CITY Nazareth. And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him. 
                    (Luke 2.39,40)

                    The gospels do not tell us much about this ‘city’ – it has a synagogue, it can scare up a hostile crowd (prompting JC’s famous “prophet rejected in his own land” quote), and it has a precipice – but the city status of Nazareth is clearly established, at least according to that source of nonsense called the Bible.
                    However when we look for historical confirmation of this hometown of a god – surprise, surprise! – no other source confirms that the place even existed in the 1st century AD.
                    • Nazareth is not mentioned even once in the entire Old Testament. The Book of Joshua (19.10,16) – in what it claims is the process of settlement by the tribe of Zebulon in the area – records twelve towns and six villages and yet omits any ‘Nazareth’ from its list.
                    • The Talmud, although it names 63 Galilean towns, knows nothing of Nazareth, nor does early rabbinic literature.
                    • St Paul knows nothing of ‘Nazareth’. Rabbi Solly’s epistles (real and fake) mention Jesus 221 times, Nazareth not at all.
                    • No ancient historian or geographer mentions Nazareth. It is first noted at the beginning of the 4th century.
                    ‘Never heard of the place’ – Josephus
                    In his histories, Josephus has a lot to say about Galilee (an area of barely 900 square miles). During the first Jewish war, in the 60s AD, Josephus led a military campaign back and forth across the tiny province. Josephus mentions 45 cities and villages of Galilee – yet Nazareth not at all.
                    Josephus does, however, have something to say about Japha (Yafa, Japhia), a village just one mile to the southwest of Nazareth where he himself lived for a time (Life 52).
                    A glance at a topographical map of the region shows that Nazareth is located at one end of a valley, bounded on three sides by hills. Natural access to this valley is from the southwest.
                    Before the first Jewish war, Japha was of a reasonable size. We know it had an early synagogue, destroyed by the Romans in 67 AD (Revue Biblique 1921, 434f). In that war, it’s inhabitants were massacred (Wars 3, 7.31). Josephus reports that 15,000 were killed by Trajan’s troops. The survivors – 2,130 woman and children – were carried away into captivity. A one-time active city was completely and decisively wiped out.
                    Now where on earth did the 1st century inhabitants of Japha bury their dead? In the tombs further up the valley!
                    With Japha’s complete destruction, tomb use at the Nazareth site would have ended. The unnamed necropolis today lies under the modern city of Nazareth.
                    At a later time – as pottery and other finds indicate(see below) – the Nazareth site was re-occupied. This was after the Bar Kochba revolt of 135 AD and the general Jewish exodus from Judea to Galilee. The new hamlet was based on subsistence farming and was quite unrelated to the previous tomb usage by the people of Japha.
                     

                    – See more at: http://www.jesusneverexisted.com/nazareth.html#sthash.hUhi52ez.dpuf

                    he called disciples;
                    he taught in the towns, villages and countryside of Galilee (apparently not the cities);
                    he preached ‘the kingdom of God’;
                    about the year 30 he went to Jerusalem for Passover;
                    he created a disturbance in the Temple area;
                    he had a final meal with the disciples;
                    he was arrested and interrogated by Jewish authorities, specifically the high priest;
                    he was executed on the orders of the Roman prefect, Pontius Pilate.
                    Maurice Casey and Michael Grant add a few other items to Sanders’ cautious list:
                    he preached repentance, forgiveness and the coming of the kingdom of God in rural and small-town Galilee;
                    he was known in his day as a healer and exorcist (Casey says he was a folk healer);
                    Jesus predicted his death and resurrection and he believed his death would be redemptive;
                    Jesus’ tomb was really empty and/or his disciples “saw” him (in what sense is uncertain) after his death.
                    Scott

                    Answer: Your brainwashing has caused you to take scripture being repeated and then assigning your belief in what it’s saying At no time does your source claim a historical Jesus exists! If you were better educated or even less desperate you would have realized this from the beginning. Now proved a quote and cite it!

                    PS, thank you Kenneth Humphreys who holds a Master’s degree from the University of Essex in history and social sciences, a post-graduate pedagogic certificate.


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      Bizbird6:

      I will respond to your points individually:

      1) “God NEVER created something from nothing. The Bible is a book of fiction with no proof at all.”

      In my essay Is there a God? (What is the chance that our world is the result of chance?) I point out the REMARKABLE similarity between the biblical and scientific accounts of creation. A couple citations from that essay:
      —–
      Arno Penzias, the 1978 Nobel Prize recipient in physics, stated to the New York Times on March 12, 1978:

      “The best data we have (concerning the Big Bang) are exactly what I would have predicted, had I nothing to go on but the five books of Moses, the Psalms, the Bible as a whole.”

      Similarly, the astronomer, physicist and founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Robert Jastrow, writes:

      “Now we see how the astronomical evidence leads to a biblical view of the origin of the world. The details differ, but the essential elements in the astronomical and biblical accounts of Genesis are the same: the chain of events leading to man commenced suddenly and sharply at a definite moment of time, in a flash of light and energy.”
      —–
      To read more in-depth about the REMARKABLE similarity between the biblical and scientific accounts of creation, I recommend the following books:

      God and the Astronomers by Robert Jastrow (who is cited above). It must be emphasized that Jastrow became convinced of the similarity between the Bible and science even though he approached the subject as a self-described agnostic…rather than a Christian or Jew who could be accused of approaching the subject with an agenda.

      The Science of God: The Convergence of Scientific and Biblical Wisdom
      by Gerald Schroeder, who has the rare qualification of being both a physicist (formerly on staff at MIT) and a biblical scholar.

      The Creator and the Cosmos: How the Greatest Scientific Discoveries of the Century Reveal God by astrophysicist Hugh Ross.

      2) “There is NOT even proof that God exist!”

      It really is not about “proof” since there is virtually no belief or scientific stance that cannot be subjected to some degree of scrutiny. Rather, it is about preponderance of evidence. For POWERFUL evidence that God exists, please read some of my essays, such as the one I mentioned above, as well as Why life could not have emerged without God and God is real: Why modern physics has discredited atheism.

      3) “The Universe does NOT need to be created. It was NEVER created. The Universe always existed, while God has NEVER existed.”

      I respond to this in Isn’t the Universe Eternal? (Thus doing away with the need for a creator). A few excerpts from that essay:
      Janna Levin, from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University writes:

      “The universe had a beginning. There was once nothing and now there is something.”

      In 2003, physicists Borde, Vilenkin and Guth corroborated to formulate a proof that demonstrates that an eternal universe is not possible. It is known as the BVG theorem. Alexander Vilenkin is very blunt in regard to the implications of this proof:

      “It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning.” (Many Worlds in One [New York: Hill and Wang, 2006], p.176).

      It must be noted that this proof applies to any proposed “multiverse” or “oscillating universe,” etc. in which our universe may be situated. Astrophysicist Robert Jastrow (the founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies) echoes Vilenkin’s above comments:

      “The lingering decline predicted by astronomers for the end of the world differs from the explosive conditions they have calculated for its birth, but the impact is the same: modern science denies an eternal existence to the Universe, either in the past or in the future.“


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        Bizbird6 says:

        Again, you are too verbose. If you cannot put your evidences within 50 words then I don’t have time to read them. Anyway, there is no preponderance of evidence that the universe cannot be eternal. What are those preponderances? There are none. You just gave a lot of quotations that no one has the time to verify. There is no proof that there was ever a beginning of the universe. All we know is that it exist now. So if there is no proof that there was a beginning, then there is no need for God. Period.


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          RATIONAL DUDE says:

          “You are very verbose but you say nothing new or interesting. Where is the Proof?”
          The Leibnizian Cosmological Argument (which does not require a beginning in time) obviously means nothing to you. Please do not ask for proof until you actually care.
          “The Burden of Proof lies with you to prove the existence of God or the validity of the Bible, not vice versa. You criticize Erhman for lack of proof, but where is your proofs?”
          Why in the world do you think he references those scholars?? Must he be the only source of the proof he needs for his position??
          “Go ahead and prove that Mathew wrote “Mathew” or that Mark wrote “Mark”. You don’t have it, otherwise you would have given it a long time ago, without all this Verbose nonsense. Again, stop all this verbose junk and get to the main point. Just give the proofs!”
          So obviously, referencing scholars who disagree with Bart Ehrman is not proof, but referencing this fringe historian is? No body could possibly argue with that logic! Except for irrational people like you, that is. Go ahead and explain what is wrong with the argumentation, rather than assert that it is not proof in any sense.

          “Again, you are too verbose. If you cannot put your evidences within 50 words then I don’t have time to read them.”
          Hypocrite alert. Preach what you practice: your excerpt from Ehrman’s book was clearly longer than 50 words.
          “Anyway, there is no preponderance of evidence that the universe cannot be eternal. What are those preponderances?”
          Hypocrite alert: How about the second law of thermodynamics? Or the accelerating expansion of the cosmos? You are more ignorant that the people you accuse of being ignorant.
          “There are none.”
          I hate to break it to you, but I disproved you just now.
          “You just gave a lot of quotations that no one has the time to verify. There is no proof that there was ever a beginning of the universe. All we know is that it exist now.”
          We also know that it is winding down from a state of low entropy to a state of high entropy, and that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate. These imply that the universe was a one-time event: it will not crunch and bang again, so it will simply die. The universe as we know it had a beginning.
          “So if there is no proof that there was a beginning, then there is no need for God. Period.”
          I refuted that in one of my comments on “Why is there something rather than nothing?” I proved that even if the universe were eternal, it would require God to keep it in existence. Think of it like a candle flame: the light coming out of the flame requires the flame at all times in order to exist. The universe is made out of things which can come into and go out of existence; these things must get their existence from another. It is possible for the entire set of things that make up the universe to not exist. The universe is this set of things. Therefore, it is possible for the universe to not exist. Therefore, the existence of the universe is not its own, it must get its existence from another.


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            Bizbird6 says:

            Again you talk nonsense! The Universe always existed and does not need anything to stay in existence.
            If you dispute that, then prove it!
            In fact, the Universe does NOT need to be created. Did you hear about the Law of Physics that say that Matter and Energy cannot be created or destroyed and is always constant? So, if God did create anything, he will be violating that Law of Physics. But don’t worry, because he did NOT violate this, because he did NOT create anything. In fact, he never existed. Period!!
            Well, I kept this within 110 words anyway. Let see, how short you can make it!


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              Bizbird6:

              You write, “Again you talk nonsense! The Universe always existed and does not need anything to stay in existence.
              If you dispute that, then prove it!” I think you have missed my previous reply to your contention that the universe is eternal (i.e. no creator required). I have therefore copied and pasted it below:

              I respond to this in Isn’t the Universe Eternal? (Thus doing away with the need for a creator). A few excerpts from that essay:
              Janna Levin, from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University writes:

              “The universe had a beginning. There was once nothing and now there is something.”

              In 2003, physicists Borde, Vilenkin and Guth corroborated to formulate a proof that demonstrates that an eternal universe is not possible. It is known as the BVG theorem. Alexander Vilenkin is very blunt in regard to the implications of this proof:

              “It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning.”
              (Many Worlds in One [New York: Hill and Wang, 2006], p.176).

              The keyword here, Bizbird6, is PROOF.

              It must be noted that this proof applies to any proposed “multiverse” or “oscillating universe,” etc. in which our universe may be situated. Astrophysicist Robert Jastrow (the founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies) echoes Vilenkin’s above comments:

              “The lingering decline predicted by astronomers for the end of the world differs from the explosive conditions they have calculated for its birth, but the impact is the same: modern science denies an eternal existence to the Universe, either in the past or in the future.“

              Scott


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                Bizbird6 says:

                You said that Bart Erhman is a “Fringe Historian”. I found out just the opposite. He is one of the most knowledgeable Bible Experts in the World. Yet, is he a “Bible Believer:? Nope!! He is an Agnostic!!!

                You can see his credentials below:

                You can read his Bio below.

                Thanks.

                David
                Bart D. Ehrman
                From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
                Jump to: navigation, search
                “Ehrman” redirects here. For another historian, see John Ehrman.
                Bart D. Ehrman

                Born 5 October 1955 (age 57)
                Lawrence, Kansas

                Nationality American
                Education BA (1978), MDiv (1981), PhD (1985)
                Alma mater
                Moody Bible Institute
                Wheaton College
                Princeton Theological Seminary

                Employer The Department of Religious Studies, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

                Known for New Testament authentication, historical Jesus, lost gospels, early Christian writings, orthodox corruption of scripture.
                Religion Agnostic

                Spouse(s) Sarah Beckwith
                Children Kelly and Derek
                Website
                http://www.bartdehrman.com

                Bart D. Ehrman (born 1955) is an American New Testament scholar, currently the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Ehrman is a leading New Testament scholar, and has also achieved acclaim at the popular level, authoring four New York Times bestsellers. His best-known works at the popular level are Misquoting Jesus and Jesus, Interrupted.[1] Ehrman’s work focuses on New Testament textual criticism and early Christianity.
                Contents
                • 1 Education
                • 2 Career
                • 3 Works
                • 4 Bibliography
                • 5 References
                • 6 External links

                Education
                Ehrman grew up in Lawrence, Kansas, and attended Lawrence High School, where he was on the state champion debate team in 1973. He began studying the Bible and its original languages at the Moody Bible Institute and is a 1978 graduate of Wheaton College in Illinois. He received his PhD and M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary, where he studied under Bruce Metzger. He received magna cum laude for both his BA in 1978 and PhD in 1985.
                Career
                Ehrman became an Evangelical Christian as a teen. In his books, he recounts his youthful enthusiasm as a born-again, fundamentalist Christian, certain that God had inspired the wording of the Bible and protected its texts from all error.[2] His desire to understand the original words of the Bible led him to the study of ancient languages and to textual criticism. His graduate studies, however, eventually convinced him that one ought to acknowledge the contradictions in the biblical manuscripts rather than attempt to harmonize or reconcile discrepancies. He remained a liberal Christian for fifteen years but later became an agnostic after struggling with the philosophical problems of evil and suffering.[2]
                Ehrman was formerly the president of the Southeast Region of the Society of Biblical Literature and worked closely as an editor on a number of the Society’s publications. Currently, he co-edits the series New Testament Tools and Studies. Much of Ehrman’s writing concentrates on various aspects of Walter Bauer’s thesis that Christianity was always diversified or at odds with itself. Ehrman is often considered a pioneer in connecting the history of the early church to textual variants within biblical manuscripts and coined the term “Proto-orthodox Christianity” to describe the Christianity that existed before theological consensus or orthodoxy was established.[3] In his writings, Ehrman attempts to show that from the time of the Church Fathers it was those denounced as heretics (Marcion, for example) who were charged with tampering with the biblical manuscripts. Ehrman theorizes that it was actually more often the orthodox that corrupted the manuscripts, altering the text to promote particular viewpoints.
                In March 2006, Ehrman joined theologian William Lane Craig in public debate on the question “Is There Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus?” on the campus of the College of the Holy Cross.[4] In April 2008, Ehrman and evangelical New Testament scholar Daniel B. Wallace participated in a public dialogue on the textual reliability of the New Testament.[5] In January 2009, Ehrman debated James White, Director of Alpha and Omega Ministries, an Evangelical Reformed Baptist apologist on “Did the Bible Mis-Quote Jesus?”
                In 2007, Ehrman gave a speech at Stanford University in which he discussed the textual inconsistencies of the New Testament, and also took questions from the audience. He regularly conducts similar sessions through the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Adventures in Ideas seminars. He has also made several guest appearances on National Public Radio (NPR) including the show Fresh Air in February 2008 to discuss his book God’s Problem: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question-Why We Suffer and in March 2009 to discuss his book Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (and Why We Don’t Know About Them).
                Ehrman has authored or contributed to more than 20 books. In 2006 and 2009 he appeared on The Colbert Report, as well as The Daily Show, to promote his books Misquoting Jesus, and Jesus, Interrupted (respectively). Professional awards received include the Students’ Undergraduate Teaching Award, The Ruth and Philip Hettleman Prize for Artistic and Scholarly Achievement, and The Bowman and Gordon Gray Award for Excellence in Teaching.
                Works
                Ehrman has written widely on issues of New Testament and early Christianity at both an academic and popular level, with over twenty books including three New York Times bestsellers (Misquoting Jesus, God’s Problem, and Jesus, Interrupted). Much of his work is on textual criticism and the New Testament. His first book was Didymus the Blind and the Text of the Gospels (1987) followed by several books published by the Oxford University Press, including The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, and a new edition and translation of The Apostolic Fathers in the Loeb Classical Library series published by Harvard University Press. In God’s Problem Ehrman discusses the problem of evil and suffering, the issue which he says led him to become agnostic.[6] His book Jesus, Interrupted critically assesses the New Testament documents and early Christianity. In his book Forged which was released in 2011, he asserts that 11 or more books of the Christian New Testament were essentially politically expeditious forgeries, intended to advance various theological positions and were in fact not written by the authors traditionally ascribed to them.
                In 1999 Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium was released as a study on the historical Jesus. Ehrman argues that the historical Jesus was an apocalyptic preacher, and that his apocalyptic beliefs are recorded in the earliest Christian documents: the Gospel of Mark and the authentic Pauline epistles. The earliest Christians believed Jesus would soon return, and their beliefs are echoed in the earliest Christian writings. In this, Ehrman follows the dominant scholarly consensus among secular scholars since Albert Schweitzer advanced a version of that thesis in 1905. In his foreword to the book, Ehrman notes that there are many popular books for the layman advancing various minority theories, such as Jesus as a wisdom-sage, shaman, magician, or even founder of a mushroom cult, but few popular books for laymen advancing the dominant scholarly consensus. This book was intended to correct that gap.
                Much of Ehrman’s writing has concentrated on various aspects of Walter Bauer’s thesis that Christianity was always diversified or at odds with itself. Ehrman is often considered a pioneer in connecting the history of the early church to textual variants within biblical manuscripts and in coining such terms as “Proto-orthodox Christianity.”[3] Ehrman brought this counter-traditional thesis, and textual criticism in general, to the lay public through his popular-level work, Misquoting Jesus.
                In 2012, Ehrman published Did Jesus Exist? defending the thesis that Jesus of Nazareth existed in contrast to the mythicist theory that Jesus is an entirely mythical or fictitious being woven whole-cloth out of legendary material. He states he expects the book to be criticized both by some atheists as well as fundamentalist Christians. In response, Richard Carrier published a lengthy criticism of the book in April 2012, particularly questioning both Ehrman’s facts and methodology.[7] Ehrman replied to Carrier’s criticisms on his website, primarily defending himself against Carrier’s allegations of factual errors.[8]
                Bibliography
                • Didymus the Blind and the Text of the Gospels (The New Testament in the Greek Fathers; No. 1). Society of Biblical Literature. 1987. ISBN 1-55540-084-1.
                • The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research: Essays on the Status Quaestionis. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. 1995. ISBN 0-8028-4824-9.
                • The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture: The Effect of Early Christological Controversies on the Text of the New Testament. Oxford University Press, USA. 2011 [1996]. ISBN 0-19-973978-1.
                • After the New Testament: A Reader in Early Christianity. Oxford University Press, USA. 1998. ISBN 0-19-511445-0.
                • Jesus: Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium. Oxford University Press, USA. 1999. ISBN 0-19-512474-X.
                • Lost Scriptures: Books that Did Not Make It into the New Testament. Oxford University Press, USA. 2003. ISBN 0-19-514182-2.
                • The New Testament and Other Early Christian Writings: A Reader. Oxford University Press, USA. 2003. ISBN 0-19-515464-9.
                • The Apostolic Fathers: Volume I. I Clement. II Clement. Ignatius. Polycarp. Didache. Harvard University Press. 2003. ISBN 0-674-99607-0.
                • The Apostolic Fathers: Volume II. Epistle of Barnabas. Papias and Quadratus. Epistle to Diognetus. The Shepherd of Hermas. Harvard University Press. 2003. ISBN 0-674-99608-9.
                • Ehrman, Bart; Jacobs, Andrew S. (2003). Christianity in Late Antiquity, 300-450 C.E.: A Reader. Oxford University Press, USA. ISBN 0-19-515461-4.
                • The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings. Oxford University Press, USA. 2003. ISBN 0-19-515462-2.
                • Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew. Oxford University Press, USA. 2003. ISBN 0-19-514183-0.
                • A Brief Introduction to the New Testament. Oxford University Press, USA. 2004. ISBN 0-19-516123-8.
                • Truth and Fiction in The Da Vinci Code: A Historian Reveals What We Really Know about Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and Constantine. Oxford University Press, USA. 2004. ISBN 0-19-518140-9.
                • Metzger, Bruce M.; Ehrman, Bart (2005). The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration. Oxford University Press, USA. ISBN 0-19-516667-1.
                • Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why. HarperSanFrancisco. 2005. ISBN 0-06-073817-0.
                • Peter, Paul, and Mary Magdalene: The Followers of Jesus in History and Legend. Oxford University Press, USA. 2006. ISBN 0-19-530013-0.
                • The Lost Gospel of Judas Iscariot: A New Look at Betrayer and Betrayed. Oxford University Press, USA. 2006. ISBN 978-0-19-531460-1.
                • God’s Problem: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question – Why We Suffer. HarperCollins, USA. 2008. ISBN 978-0-06-117397-4.
                • Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don’t Know About Them). HarperCollins, USA. 2009. ISBN 978-0-06-117394-3.
                • Forged: Writing in the Name of God—Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are. HarperCollins, USA. 2011. ISBN 978-0-06-201261-6.
                • Ehrman, Bart; Pleše, Zlatko (2011). The Apocryphal Gospels: Texts and Translations. Oxford University Press, USA. ISBN 978-0-19-973210-4.
                • Did Jesus Exist?:The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth. HarperCollins, USA. 2012. ISBN 978-0-06-220460-8.
                • Forgery and Counterforgery: The Use of Literary Deceit in Early Christian Polemics. Oxford University Press, USA. 2012. ISBN 978-0-19-992803-3.
                References


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                  I don’t recall asserting that Ehrman is a “fringe historian.” But here is what I will assert: Ehrman is NOT even a fringe historian. Rather, he is NOT an historian at all. He is a New Testament textual critic (as your own above post points out). He is a textual critic who often poses as an historian. Please specify which of Ehrman’s credentials qualify him as an “historian.” You can’t, because he is a textual critic, not an historian.

                  Please read this article to see what I mean. An excerpt:

                  One of the problems however with some of Bart’s popular work, including this book, is that it does not follow the age old adage— “before you boil down, you need to have first boiled it up”. By this I mean Bart Ehrman, so far as I can see, and I would be glad to be proved wrong about this fact, has never done the necessary laboring in the scholarly vineyard to be in a position to write a book like Jesus, Interrupted from a position of long study and knowledge of New Testament Studies. He has never written a scholarly monograph on NT theology or exegesis. He has never written a scholarly commentary on any New Testament book whatsoever! His area of expertise is in textual criticism, and he has certainly written works like The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, which have been variously reviewed, not to mention severely critiqued by other textual critics such as Gordon D. Fee, and his own mentor Bruce Metzger (whom I also did some study with). He is thus, in the guild of the Society of Biblical Literature a specialist in text criticism, but even in this realm he does not represent what might be called a majority view on such matters.

                  It is understandable how a textual critic might write a book like Misquoting Jesus, on the basis of long study of the underpinnings of textual criticism and its history and praxis. It is mystifying however why he would attempt to write a book like Jesus, Interrupted which frankly reflect no in-depth interaction at all with exegetes, theologians, and even most historians of the NT period of whatever faith or no faith at all. A quick perusal of the footnotes to this book, reveal mostly cross-references to Ehrman’s earlier popular works, with a few exceptions sprinkled in—for example Raymond Brown and E.P Sanders, the former long dead, the latter long retired. What is especially telling and odd about this is Bart does not much reflect a knowledge of the exegetical or historical study of the text in the last thirty years. It’s as if he is basing his judgments on things he read whilst in Princeton Seminary. And that was a long time ago frankly.


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        Bizbird6 says:

        Here are many points below that shows that Belief in God is totally wrong. It proves point by point the fallacy of your God belief. Please read this below carefully. It will open your eyes like never before.

        Mere Atheism
        a·the·ist [ay-thee-ist] n. One who has read the Bible and thinks your god is as real as the thousands you don’t believe in.
        http://mereatheism.com/home2.pngHome
        Introduction
        “If God is love, why does he punish innocent people?”
        http://mereatheism.com/sistine1.jpg
        In the beginning, let’s get a few things straight…
        This site aims to test the Christian claim that God is love (1 John 4:16). This site does not aim to refute Christian answers to the problem of evil. As such, our discussion will not deal with either theodicies of moral evil (serial killers) or natural evil (earthquakes). However, we’ll examine an overlooked evil: intrinsically evil acts that are recorded to have been committed by God himself.
        Since Christians almost universally accept the Bible as the inspired Word of God, we’ll use three examples from the Bible to test the claim that God is love. After all, for a lot of people like me, atheism is biblically-based.
        Ancient Egypt
        “If God is love, why does he commit genocide of innocent children?”
        http://mereatheism.com/lament.jpg
        Passover Plague: Genocide of the Firstborns
        While there’s scant evidence outside the Bible to suggest that the Israelites were ever in Egypt, the Book of Exodus recounts the struggles of the Israelite slaves to free themselves from their bondage. The leader of the Egyptians, the unspecified Pharaoh, does not let the Israelites go and thus God punishes his kingdom with numerous plagues. The last of these ten plagues is harshest: all of the Egyptian firstborn males are killed. This tale of genocide is called the Passover, signifying that God passed over (and thus spared) the houses of Israelites who smeared their doors with blood of a slaughtered young male lamb or goat. The gist of the story (minus the gratuitous references to blood smearing):
        Exodus 11:4-7; 12:29- 30 NIV
        God: “About midnight I will go throughout Egypt. Every firstborn son in Egypt will die, from the firstborn son of Pharaoh, who sits on the throne, to the firstborn son of the slave girl, who is at her hand mill, and all the firstborn of the cattle as well. There will be loud wailing throughout Egypt – worse than there has ever been or ever will be again. But among the Israelites not a dog will bark at any man or animal.”
        At midnight the LORD struck down all the firstborn in Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh, who sat on the throne, to the firstborn of the prisoner, who was in the dungeon, and the firstborn of all the livestock as well. Pharaoh and all his officials and all the Egyptians got up during the night, and there was loud wailing in Egypt, for there was not a house without someone dead.
        This gruesome snuff literature raises a few questions:

        Which definition of love is compatible with God punishing the innocent victims of a dictator?
        Why does God use children as hostages?
        Why doesn’t God kill Pharaoh in the first place if he has no qualms about killing people?
        Why does God “harden Pharaoh’s heart” about a dozen times (Exodus 4:21; 7:3; 9:12; 10:1,20,27; 11:10; 14:4,8,17)?
        Why does an all-powerful God need Pharaoh’s permission to let the Israelites go?

        Synopsis: Instead of resolving the situation peacefully, God decides to indiscriminately kill the powerless victims of a dictator while leaving alive the dictator who is incapacitated to act because his heart is hardened by none other than God himself.

        Garden of Eden
        “If God is love, why does he entrap and then wrongly punish innocent people?”
        http://mereatheism.com/eden.jpg
        The Fall of Man: Entrapment and Wrongful Punishment
        After making hundreds of billions of galaxies each with hundreds of billions of stars, God finds time to build a resort for the pinnacle of the universe: man. How ironic would it be if man turns out to be flawed and can’t even follow simple directions:
        Genesis 2:8-9, 15-17 NIV
        Now the LORD God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground – trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.
        God: “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”
        Someone forgets to call the exterminator man and the story quickly escalates as God’s perfect creation has an infestation of Satan in the form of a snake:
        Genesis 3:1-7 NIV
        Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made.
        Serpent: “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
        Woman: “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.'”
        Serpent: “You will not surely die for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
        When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
        God then finds out, which shouldn’t come as a surprise since you’ve read this story before and God is all-knowing (I guess he was testing himself). God promptly lays the smack down:
        Genesis 3:11-13, 16-19 NIV
        God: “Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”
        Man: “The woman you put here with me – she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”
        God: “What is this you have done, woman?”
        Woman: “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
        God: “Woman, I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.”
        God: “Man, cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.”
        Party’s over. God, for reasons unknown, gets uptight about Adam and Eve living forever if they ever eat from the tree of knowledge. He hires a security guard:
        Genesis 3:22-24 NIV
        God: “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.”
        So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden. After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.
        Whether one reads this story historically or metaphorically, the main point stays just the same: humans did bad, humans got punished. But is that a fair judgment? I don’t think so as there are a few troubling points in the story:

        God allows the evil serpent to live in his garden.
        God does not want Adam and Eve to know the difference between good and evil.
        God plants the temptation himself, neglects to tell Adam and Eve about the serpent (who is “more crafty than any of the wild animals”), knows the outcome, yet he permits the situation to unfold. In the justice system, this is called a set up or entrapment.
        God is threatened by the notion that Adam and Eve could live forever if they eat from the tree of life.
        Worst of all: Adam and Eve know that they have done something evil only after eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. When God commands Adam not eat from the tree, he simply does not have the capacity to understand the command as he is given the faculty to discern the difference between good and evil only after eating from the tree of knowledge.

        Some questions for Christians:

        Why does God allow the serpent to roam free in the Garden of Eden? Why doesn’t he tell Adam and Eve about the serpent?
        Why does God not want Adam and Eve to know the knowledge of good and evil in the first place? Does God want Adam and Eve to be ignorant robots?
        What does God go through with this exercise despite the fact that he already knows the outcome? Is he testing his omniscience?
        Why does God feel threatened that Adam and Eve could live forever if they eat from the tree of life?
        Most importantly: How are Adam and Eve supposed to know what is good and what is evil if they have not eaten from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil?

        Synopsis: God entraps Adam and Eve by planting the forbidden tree in the middle of the garden and by allowing the serpent to roam free. Furthermore, since Adam and Eve lack the knowledge of good and evil the moment they commit their sin, they cannot be held accountable for not knowing that disobeying God is evil. You might as well blame the blind for not seeing or the deaf for not hearing.
        Under such perverted thinking, parents might as well throw their children out to the streets for wanting to learn how to read. If such an act were actually committed, the parents would hopefully be charged with child abuse and neglect. Why does God get a free pass?
        Midian
        “If God is love, why does he act like Adolf Hitler?”
        http://mereatheism.com/hitler.jpg
        Genocide and Enslavement of the Midianites
        After the Israelites leave Egypt where they had been oppressed, it’s time for the Israelites to don the clothes of the oppressors under the divine mandate of God himself. For about a dozen books after Exodus, the Bible tells the story of the conquest of Palestine in bloody detail. Perhaps the account in Numbers 31 is the most succinct of the barbaric brutality. In that story, God punishes the Midianites for a relatively minor offense (that another nation, the Moabites, committed):
        Numbers 31:1-4, 7, 9-14 NIV
        God: “Moses, take vengeance on the Midianites for the Israelites. After that, you will be gathered to your people.”
        Moses: “People, arm some of your men to go to war against the Midianites and to carry out the LORD’s vengeance on them. Send into battle a thousand men from each of the tribes of Israel.”
        They fought against Midian, as the LORD commanded Moses, and killed every man. The Israelites captured the Midianite women and children and took all the Midianite herds, flocks and goods as plunder. They burned all the towns where the Midianites had settled, as well as all their camps. They took all the plunder and spoils, including the people and animals, and brought the captives, spoils and plunder to Moses and Eleazar the priest and the Israelite assembly at their camp on the plains of Moab, by the Jordan across from Jericho.
        Moses, Eleazar the priest and all the leaders of the community went to meet them outside the camp. Moses was angry with the officers of the army – the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds – who returned from the battle.
        What could Moses be angry at? Perhaps the Israelites did not wage war correctly? You bet. Perhaps they did too much damage? Nope, not enough:
        Numbers 31:15- 18 NIV
        Moses: “Have you allowed all the women to live? They were the ones who followed Balaam’s advice and were the means of turning the Israelites away from the LORD in what happened at Peor, so that a plague struck the LORD’s people. Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.”
        What a loving God invading a country without due reason and killing and enslaving innocent children! Here’s a timeline of the story including the context as to why the Midianites were specifically targetted:

        God commands the Israelites to take vengeance by waging an aggressive war.
        The men are killed.
        The women and children are taken prisoners.
        Midian is plundered and is then completely burned to the ground.
        The boys are killed. No reason is given.
        The women are killed. The reason is that Moabite women in Numbers 25 lured Israelite men to worship Moabite gods (Numbers 25:1-3). Yes, the Midianites, as a whole, are blamed for the misdeeds of the Moabite women (Numbers 25:16-18). Yes, this is an error and contradiction in the Bible.
        But not everyone is butchered. “Every girl who has never slept with a man” is saved. The Bible is not explicit in what happened to the virgin girls, so we’re left two main possibilities: the Midianite girls were hauled off into slavery or forced into marriage.

        Some questions:

        Why does an all-knowing God take revenge on the Midianites for the misdeeds of the Moabites?
        Why is “sexual immorality” and converting a group to another religion worthy of genocide and utter destruction?
        Why are the false gods of Moab so convincing to the Israelites if they’re in contact with the real God?
        Why are the innocent boys killed?
        Why does a loving God haul virgin girls off into slavery, sexual or not?

        Synopsis: It’s really hard to imagine what could have been done worse here.
        Conclusion
        “If God really existed, it would be necessary to abolish him.” – Mike Bakunin
        http://mereatheism.com/scream.jpg
        God Is Not Love, God Is Sick
        In search of testing the original claim, we have profiled three cases. In the first, God kills thousands of innocent children to punish a dictator who himself is spared but is incapacitated to act by God himself. In the second, God entraps and punishes two people who could not have known any better. In the third, God orders an aggressive war complete with the genocide and kidnapping of an entire nation’s innocent children. What do all three situations have in common? Three groups, consisting of entirely innocent people, were targeted and punished severely by God for things over which they had no control.
        Using just these three cases, we can see that the God character in the Bible is very hateful. Furthermore, just a cursory glance of the other parts of the Bible reveals that such cases are not isolated and that God (or rather his inventors) suffers from at least four of the ten personality disorders described by modern psychiatry: paranoid, antisocial, borderline, and narcissistic personality disorders. A batting average of .400 is pretty good, but unfortunately for God he’s not playing baseball.
        Below is a table with examples matching the diagnostic criteria for each personality disorder from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR).
        Paranoid Personality Disorder
        Criteria

        Example
        suspects that others are deceiving, exploiting, harming, or deceiving him or her, without sufficient basis

        In Genesis 20, God tells Abimelech that he is “as good as dead” despite the fact that Abimelech had not done anything.
        is preoccupied with unjustified doubts about the loyalty or trustworthiness of friends or associates

        In the Book of Job, God goes out of his way to prove to Satan that Job will keep his faith.
        is reluctant to confide in others because of unwarranted fear that the information will be used maliciously against him or her

        Starting with the Burning Bush incident in Exodus 3, God regularly confides only with Moses during his lifetime.
        persistently bears grudges, i.e., is unforgiving of insults, injuries, or slights

        “I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel [centuries before] when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy everything that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.” (1 Samuel 15:2-3 NIV)
        perceives attacks on his or her character or reputation that are not apparent to others and is quick to react angrily or to counterattack

        “My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless.” (Exodus 22:24 NIV)
        Antisocial Personality Disorder
        Criteria

        Example
        failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors as indicated by repeatedly performing acts that are grounds for arrest

        “O Daughter of Babylon, doomed to destruction, happy is he who repays you for what you have done to us – he who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks.” (Psalm 137:8-9 NIV)
        deceitfulness, as indicated by repeated lying, use of aliases, or conning others for personal profit or pleasure

        “For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie.” (2 Thessalonians 2:11 NIV)
        irritability and aggressiveness, as indicated by repeated physical fights or assaults

        “From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, some youths came out of the town and jeered at him. ‘Go on up, you baldhead!’ they said. ‘Go on up, you baldhead!’ He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the LORD. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths.” (2 Kings 2:23-24 NIV)
        reckless disregard for safety of self or others

        “See how the waters are rising in the north; they will become an overflowing torrent. They will overflow the land and everything in it, the towns and those who live in them. The people will cry out; all who dwell in the land will wail.” (Jeremiah 47:2 NIV)
        lack of remorse, as indicated by being indifferent to or rationalizing having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from another

        In Exodus 13, God commemorates the genocide of the Egyptian firstborn.
        Borderline Personality Disorder
        Criteria

        Example
        frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment.

        In Genesis 1-2, God is bored so he creates pets to play with. They’re called humans.
        a pattern of intense and unstable interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation

        In Exodus 3, God chooses Moses to be a prophet. But already in Exodus 4, God is ready to kill Moses because his son is uncircumcised.
        identity disturbance: markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self

        “I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things.” (Isaiah 45:7 NIV)
        recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behavior

        Jesus fasts for forty days in the desert, hints to his disciples that he will die, but refuses to prove himself during his trial. (Luke 4, Luke 22, Luke 23)
        inappropriate, intense anger or difficulty controlling anger (e.g., frequent displays of temper, constant anger, recurrent physical fights)

        “I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth – men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air – for I am grieved that I have made them.” (Genesis 6:7 NIV)
        Narcissistic Personality Disorder
        Criteria

        Example
        has a grandiose sense of self-importance

        “You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.” (Exodus 20:3-6 NIV)
        is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love

        “Your right hand, O LORD, was majestic in power. Your right hand, O LORD, shattered the enemy.” (Exodus 15:6 NIV)
        believes that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people

        The Israelites are the chosen people in the Old Testament to the exclusion of everyone else.
        requires excessive admiration

        In Genesis 4, Cain works in the fields and thus only has produce to offer to God. Abel has a flock and offers animal sacrifices. God doesn’t like Cain’s efforts, he likes Abel’s.
        has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations

        While the Israelites were in the desert, a man was found gathering wood on the Sabbath day. The LORD said to Moses, “The man must die. The whole assembly must stone him outside the camp.” So the assembly took him outside the camp and stoned him to death, as the LORD commanded Moses. (Numbers 15:32,35-36 NIV)
        Conclusion: God is not love, God is sick. Love is not compatible with genocide, entrapment, and enslavement or if does that’s a rather loose definition.
        Divine Exceptionalism
        “To be right in everything, we ought always to hold that the white we see is black if the Church so decides it.” – Ignatius of Loyola
        http://mereatheism.com/ignatiusloyola.jpg
        How do Christians reconcile a loving God who commits atrocities?
        If the subject of this website were anybody other than God, no one would have a problem with calling such a person despicable. But Christians tell me that God is different. He is so wholly other that when he is described as murdering children that’s still considered love. No matter what God does, he is still good. But why this divine exceptionalism? Why can’t God follow basic elementary principles like “Thou shalt not commit genocide of children”? Here’s the list of common excuses in Q&A format:
        The edicts of God from Israel’s holy wars do not apply anymore. Why don’t you quote some nice things from the New Testament?

        This argument is false: There’s nothing to suggest in the New Testament that Jesus is separate from the Old Testament. In fact, if you want nice things from the New Testament, how about a bunch of verses that show that Jesus affirms the Father (Matthew 5:17-19, 11:25, 20:23; 2 Timothy 3:16-17)?
        This argument is irrelevant: Even if the rules of the game change with Jesus, the Christian idea of God includes perfection. A perfect god cannot commit imperfect acts, including in the past. Killing innocent children is an imperfect act, ergo God is not perfect.

        God should not be held to human standards as he’s outside the universe. Since he is omniscient and we have finite knowledge, we are in no position to judge him.

        This argument is circular: That God is love (or that God is perfect) is the claim. One cannot assume it to be true. Claims are decided by evidence and not by repeating the claim as an assertion. To see an illustration of why the argument is nonsensical, plug in *any* god instead of God into the list above that claims perfection but seemingly fails to achieve it. What do you get? You get a “proof” for that god, although the exercise is futile because it’s not very convincing. (In fact, all of these arguments in this section can apply to any god.)
        This argument is an unparsimonious ad hoc hypothesis: Explaining one unknown (how can God be love/perfect despite acts of genocide, etc.) with an even bigger unknown (God is infinite) is ludicrous. Claims that fail to be proven true cannot be rescued by tacking on more and more complicated assumptions.
        This argument is contradictory: If we’re so limited that we cannot see why God would commit genocide, how can Christians claim they know that he’s infinite? If we can’t know something so simple about God, how can we know anything complex about him?
        This argument is untestable: Christians who maintain that God is outside the universe do so at a high cost. If God decides to skedaddle out of the realm of logical reality and go on adventures in Wonderland, he finds company with Zeus, meaningless sentences like “Tuesday smells like boats,” leprechauns, and other nonentities. Is that the category Christians want to put him into?

        Uhhhh, humans are meant to obey God because he is sovereign of the universe who ought not to be second-guessed. Why are you questioning him?

        This argument is (still circular but more importantly) illogical: If reason is a God-given gift, why are we punished for using it? It’s as if God implanted us with an itch and we’re told not scratch it. And why not question God? What harm is there for God if we don’t believe in him? Is he going to be upset if we don’t believe in him? Is he going to cry? Why would an infinite and all-powerful being care if we believed in him or not? How can such a supposedly perfect God be that vain?

        What Now?
        “Question with boldness even the existence of God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blind-folded fear.” – Tom Jefferson
        http://mereatheism.com/horus.jpg
        Which of the thousands of gods is the right one?
        The fact that one is a sociopath does not make one non-existent. With that said, atheism is just one of many logical conclusions that the god of the Bible is not love. There’s perhaps four more:
        http://mereatheism.com/stalin.jpg

        (Modified) Christianity
        The god of the Bible does exist, but he is malevolent and not loving. As such, the only reason we should believe in this god is that he can make us suffer by sending us to Hell. This is no different than bowing down to a dictator because he’s powerful. To atheists, such a god is petty, vain, and curiously all too human. To atheists, man created gods in his image, not the other way around.
        Motto: “Keep the virgin girls for yourselves. War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.”
        http://mereatheism.com/horusicon.jpg

        Revelatory Theism (other than Christianity)
        The god of the Bible does not exist, but [insert one of the thousands of other gods] does. However, on closer inspection all scriptures reveal the same kind of petty deities as the god of the Bible. To atheists, from Aah (Egyptian moon god) to Zvaizdikis (Slavic star god), they’re all the same vain beings.
        Motto: “No, I’m the real god! It’s the other ten thousand gods who are fakes!”
        http://mereatheism.com/yoda.jpg

        Deadbeat Deism
        The god of the Bible does not exist, but one that created the universe does exist. More importantly, this god doesn’t care he’s being misquoted in dozens of different holy books. Furthermore, this god apparently doesn’t care to be worshipped or to maintain communication with humans; hence, he’s inconsequential. Practically speaking, it’s as if he didn’t exist. To atheists, such a god is useless to postulate since he’s as useful to us as invisible pink unicorns.
        Motto: “Eh, whatever.”
        http://mereatheism.com/dali.jpg

        Ironic Surrealism
        The god of the Bible does exist, but he’s lying through the Bible to test Christians. Only those who reject the Bible get into Heaven because God wants a good laugh… or something. Now, this view isn’t actually held by anyone, but it does demonstrate the precarious position Christians find themselves in. If humans are limited, how do Christians know that an infinite being isn’t just screwing with them for kicks? An infinite god, by definition, could easily outsmart humans.
        Motto: “You thought I wanted to spend all eternity with people who worship Bronze Age myths created by semi-literate war-mongers? Haha, come on now.”
        http://mereatheism.com/atheismicon.gif

        Atheism/Agnosticism
        Atheism is the realization that magical fairies aren’t whirling about trying to get you to stop looking at naughty magazines. Your prayers about doing well on your math test have about the same chance of being answered as the prayers of the Midianite or Egyptian children.
        Motto: “[Insert whatever you want.]”
        So perhaps the title, Mere Atheism, is a bit misleading. This site is perhaps better described as an introduction to atheism. As such, the atheist position is fully defended and justified by the many essays in Further Reading. If you have questions about those essays or this one, email me.


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          Bizbird6:

          In your opening, you write: “Here are many points below that shows that Belief in God is totally wrong. It proves point by point the fallacy of your God belief. Please read this below carefully. It will open your eyes like never before.”

          But the first thing that I must call attention to is the fact that you have failed to respond to the pieces of evidence for God’s existence that I presented in my previous replies. Rather than ignoring them, why don’t you demonstrate that you have a LOGICAL response to them by actually RESPONDING to them? In my debates with atheists, I have noted the tendency for many atheists to use the “throw-a-bunch-of-stuff-against-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks” approach. Further, I have to call attention to the fact that you accuse RATIONAL DUDE of being “too verbose” in his replies, and yet, your comment is far more wordy than any of his.

          Since you have failed to respond to any of the pieces of evidence that I have produced, I will copy and paste them below (in hopes of getting a reply out of you):

          In my essay Is there a God? (What is the chance that our world is the result of chance?) I point out the REMARKABLE similarity between the biblical and scientific accounts of creation. A couple citations from that essay:
          —–
          Arno Penzias, the 1978 Nobel Prize recipient in physics, stated to the New York Times on March 12, 1978:

          “The best data we have (concerning the Big Bang) are exactly what I would have predicted, had I nothing to go on but the five books of Moses, the Psalms, the Bible as a whole.”

          Similarly, the astronomer, physicist and founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Robert Jastrow, writes:

          “Now we see how the astronomical evidence leads to a biblical view of the origin of the world. The details differ, but the essential elements in the astronomical and biblical accounts of Genesis are the same: the chain of events leading to man commenced suddenly and sharply at a definite moment of time, in a flash of light and energy.”

          Indeed, as astrophysicist Hugh Ross points out:

          “Astronomers who do not draw theistic or deistic conclusions are becoming rare, and even the few dissenters hint that the tide is against them. Geoffrey Burbidge, of the University of California at San Diego, complains that his fellow astronomers are rushing off to join ‘The First Church of Christ of the Big Bang.’”

          But it is never acceptable to just point out what authorities in a field such as astrophysics are saying about the evidence for God without also pointing out WHY they are saying it. Therefore, I refer you my post titled OK…I want numbers. What is the probability that our world is the result of chance? A couple citations from that essay:

          “A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature. The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question.”

          –Cambridge University astrophysicist and mathematician Fred Hoyle

          .

          “Fred Hoyle and I differ on lots of questions, but on this we agree: a common sense and satisfying interpretation of our world suggests the designing hand of a superintelligence.”

          –Former Harvard University Research Professor of Astronomy and the History of Science Owen Gingerich, who is now the senior astronomer at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. Gingerich is here reflecting on Fred Hoyle’s above comment.

          ——-
          Now, Bizbird6, since your post was absolutely huge, I will try to respond as concisely as possible so as not to make this discussion absolutely unreadable to third-party viewers. IF I FORGET TO REPLY TO ANYTHING THAT YOU THINK IS CRITICAL, JUST CALL IT TO MY ATTENTION AND I WILL REPLY. YOU SEEM TO BE USING THE QUANTITY-OVER-QUALITY APPROACH. In other words, you are putting forth a HUGE amount of information in hopes that some of it will stick. If you think that you have a strong argument, why don’t you just produce it concisely, as you urged RATIONAL DUDE to do?

          PLEASE SPECIFY WHAT YOU THINK ARE YOUR 2 STRONGEST ARGUMENTS AGAINST THE GOD OF THE BIBLE SO THAT WE CAN HAVE A DISCUSSION. PRODUCING A HUGE VOLUME OF TEXT IS AN ATTEMPT TO DISTRACT PEOPLE FROM THE LACK OF QUALITY OF YOUR ARGUMENTS…BY USING QUANTITY AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR QUALITY. It should be transparent to everyone viewing this discussion that your are using the “throw-lots-of-stuff-at-the-wall-and-hope-that-some-of-it-sticks” approach so as to avoid having to logically defend your arguments.

          In regards to your allegations about the “malevolence” of God, I present the following replies:

          David Robertson’s reply from The Dawkins Letters:

          …you need to learn the basic principles of reading the Bible. You must always read it in context – that includes historical, literary, theological and biblical context. To read out of context is to misread. Then you must recognize that much of the Bible is descriptive rather than prescriptive. In other words, it is telling us what went on rather than what should have happened.

          David T. Lamb writes in God Behaving Badly: Is the God of the Old Testament Angry, Sexist and Racist?

          …Since the conquest narrative also involves divine violence, it is necessary to review the subject here. Previously we noted five things about the violence involved with the conquest narratives. First, the Canaanites were being punished for their wicked and violent behavior, particularly attacking defenseless Israel as they were fleeing a situation in which they had been oppressively enslaved for hundreds of years. Second, Israel was not trying to brutally expand their borders to establish an empire like the Assyrians, but as exiles they were simply attempting to reestablish a home in the land of their ancestors. Third, Yahweh had been slow to punish the Canaanites, waiting during the entire period of Israelite enslavement (Gen 15:16), giving the Canaanites plenty of time to repent. Fourth, the Canaanite conquest was not unusual, because in the ancient Near East, military victors typically either killed or enslaved all the vanquished people. Fifth, the killing was probably limited and localized as only a few texts speak of widespread destruction, while most of them speak of numerous Canaanites remaining in the land. One additional point to make here is that the primary image used to describe the Canaanite conquest is not of slaughter. While the texts that describe Israel’s violent obedience get our attention (Josh 10:40; 11:12), the textual image used far more frequently for the conquest is “driving out” the people of the land (Ex 23:28-31; 34:11; Num 32:21; 33:52-55; Deut 4:38; 7:1; 9:3-6; 11:23; 18:12; 33:27; Josh 3:10; 14:12; 17:18; 23:5). Yahweh tells the Israelites that he will drive out the people of the land before the Israelites even arrive, using hornets and angels (Ex 23:28; 33:2). The number of Canaanites in the land appears to have been reduced before the conquest battles begin. The books of Joshua and judges also repeatedly tell us not only that Israel didn’t slaughter all the Canaanites, but they didn’t even successfully drive them out (Josh 13:13; 15:63; 16:10; 17:13; 23:13; Judg 1:19, 21, 27-33; 2:21).

          In your huge comment, I saw that you ask: “Which of the thousands of gods is the right one?” I wrote an essay which addresses this topic titled Which God is Real? In short, the judeo-christian concept of God is actually much more than just a judeo-christian concept. Rather, it is an utterly trans-cultural and trans-historical concept of God.


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            Bizbird6 says:

            Stop giving me quotes which are totally unreliable. A person can say one thing when he was a child, another thing he is an adult and something else when he is older. Or he can say one thing when he is in a good mood and something else when he is depressed. Also, I really don’t have time to verify your quotes anyway, so you can LIE like anything. So stop giving me useless quotes. JUST GIVE ME THE SUBSTANCE and PROOF, and not opinion!!!


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            Bizbird6 says:

            You are too verbose and I have no time to read your Novels. Can you keep it to no more than 140 words? All Verbose messages will now be ignored. Just write the substance and NO quotes. I have no time to verify your quotes which are NOT reliable and are inaccurate.


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              Bizbird6:

              You say that you have no time to read my “Novels.” Can I keep it in mo more than 140 words? How is it that you arbitrarily impose a 140 word restriction on me, but then produce VAST amounts of text in your own replies? I agree that it is difficult to conduct a rational debate when the number of subjects gets too large.

              Therefore, I invite you to specify which ONE (or two) of your arguments against God you would like to discuss…so as to keep the discussion brief and readable, rather than complicated and disorganized. (You could also specify one of my arguments FOR God that you would like to discuss, if you wish).

              So, go ahead: I am going to confidently predict that you will not do this because you want to avoid engaging in a rational debate. You would prefer to use the throw-a-huge-amount-of-stuff-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks and rhetoric-instead-of-logic approaches in order to avoid rational discussion.

              If I am wrong, then please specify which topic you would like to discuss in detail. Would it be Bart Ehrman? Would it be the cosmological arguments I present in Is there a God? What is the chance that our world is a result of chance? Would it be the “God is cruel and mean” arguments?

              Scott


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        Bizbird6 says:

        You need read this article below which says that the Bible is FULL of Lies and FORGERIES. You need to read this carefully. It is easier to lie when the event that took place was some 2,000 years ago. Anyway, please read this below:

        Bart D. Ehrman

        Author, ‘Forged: Writing in the Name of God—Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are’
        GET UPDATES FROM Bart D. Ehrman

        Who Wrote The Bible and Why It Matters

        Posted: 03/25/11 09:38 PM ET

        Apart from the most rabid fundamentalists among us, nearly everyone admits that the Bible might contain errors — a faulty creation story here, a historical mistake there, a contradiction or two in some other place. But is it possible that the problem is worse than that — that the Bible actually contains lies?

        Most people wouldn’t put it that way, since the Bible is, after all, sacred Scripture for millions on our planet. But good Christian scholars of the Bible, including the top Protestant and Catholic scholars of America, will tell you that the Bible is full of lies, even if they refuse to use the term. And here is the truth: Many of the books of the New Testament were written by people who lied about their identity, claiming to be a famous apostle — Peter, Paul or James — knowing full well they were someone else. In modern parlance, that is a lie, and a book written by someone who lies about his identity is a forgery.

        Most modern scholars of the Bible shy away from these terms, and for understandable reasons, some having to do with their clientele. Teaching in Christian seminaries, or to largely Christian undergraduate populations, who wants to denigrate the cherished texts of Scripture by calling them forgeries built on lies? And so scholars use a different term for this phenomenon and call such books “pseudepigrapha.”

        You will find this antiseptic term throughout the writings of modern scholars of the Bible. It’s the term used in university classes on the New Testament, and in seminary courses, and in Ph.D. seminars.

        What the people who use the term do not tell you is that it literally means “writing that is inscribed with a lie.”
        And that’s what such writings are. Whoever wrote the New Testament book of 2 Peter claimed to be Peter. But scholars everywhere — except for our friends among the fundamentalists — will tell you that there is no way on God’s green earth that Peter wrote the book. Someone else wrote it claiming to be Peter. Scholars may also tell you that it was an acceptable practice in the ancient world for someone to write a book in the name of someone else. But that is where they are wrong. If you look at what ancient people actually said about the practice, you’ll see that they invariably called it lying and condemned it as a deceitful practice, even in Christian circles. 2 Peter was finally accepted into the New Testament because the church fathers, centuries later, were convinced that Peter wrote it. But he didn’t. Someone else did. And that someone else lied about his identity.

        The same is true of many of the letters allegedly written by Paul. Most scholars will tell you that whereas seven of the 13 letters that go under Paul’s name are his, the other six are not. Their authors merely claimed to be Paul. In the ancient world, books like that were labeled as pseudoi — lies.

        This may all seem like a bit of antiquarian curiosity, especially for people whose lives don’t depend on the Bible or even people of faith for whom biblical matters are a peripheral interest at best. But in fact, it matters sometimes. Whoever wrote the book of 1 Timothy claimed to be Paul. But he was lying about that — he was someone else living after Paul had died. In his book, the author of 1 Timothy used Paul’s name and authority to address a problem that he saw in the church. Women were speaking out, exercising authority and teaching men. That had to stop. The author told women to be silent and submissive, and reminded his readers about what happened the first time a woman was allowed to exercise authority over a man, in that little incident in the garden of Eden. No, the author argued, if women wanted to be saved, they were to have babies (1 Tim. 2:11-15).

        Largely on the basis of this passage, the apostle Paul has been branded, by more liberation minded people of recent generations, as one of history’s great misogynists. The problem, of course, is that Paul never said any such thing. And why does it matter? Because the passage is still used by church leaders today to oppress and silence women. Why are there no women priests in the Catholic Church? Why are women not allowed to preach in conservative evangelical churches? Why are there churches today that do not allow women even to speak? In no small measure it is because Paul allegedly taught that women had to be silent, submissive and pregnant. Except that the person who taught this was not Paul, but someone lying about his identity so that his readers would think he was Paul.

        It may be one of the greatest ironies of the Christian scriptures that some of them insist on truth, while telling a lie. For no author is truth more important than for the “Paul” of Ephesians. He refers to the gospel as “the word of truth” (1:13); he indicates that the “truth is in Jesus”; he tells his readers to “speak the truth” to their neighbors (4:24-25); and he instructs his readers to “fasten the belt of truth around your waist” (6:14). And yet he himself lied about who he was. He was not really Paul.

        It appears that some of the New Testament writers, such as the authors of 2 Peter, 1 Timothy and Ephesians, felt they were perfectly justified to lie in order to tell the truth. But we today can at least evaluate their claims and realize just how human, and fallible, they were. They were creatures of their time and place. And so too were their teachings, lies and all.
        Bart D. Ehrman is the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and the New York Times bestselling author of ‘Misquoting Jesus’ and ‘Jesus, Interrupted’. His latest book, ‘Forged: Writing in the Name of God — Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are’, is now available from HarperOne.


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          Bizbird6:

          I found this great review of Bart Ehrman’s book “Forged: Writing in the Name of God—Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are”. Ehrman fails to respond to (or even acknowledge) the wealth of scholarly research which contradicts his conclusions. Some excerpts appear below (I have put the conclusion first, so readers can cut to the chase, if they wish):

          Conclusion:

          The fact that Bart Ehrman has put forth a trade-book rather than a scholarly monograph on ancient pseudepigrapha allows him the luxury of not having to deal with counter-evidence or peer review. Nowhere does he cite E. Earle Ellis, D. A. Carson, Leon Morris, Douglas Moo, Donald Guthrie (except for one note on an article, ignoring his massive work on NT introduction), Andreas Köstenberger, L. S. Kellum, Charles Quarles, Richard Longenecker, Anthony Kenny, Martin Hengel, Alan Millard, K. J. Neumann, David Dungan, T. L. Wilder, Harold W. Hoehner, or countless other scholars whose research disputes his conclusions. To the unsuspecting layperson, Forged looks like a death knell to the NT canon. To those who labor in the discipline of NT studies, it looks like yet another sensationalist book from Ehrman that is heavy on rhetoric and light on facts.

          [In other words, Bizbird6, Ehrman is apparently afraid to present his thesis in a scholarly journal because he knows it will not survive peer review.]

          What the subtitle of the book [Forged. Writing in the Name of God] claims…is related only to the Bible: forgeries abound in the Bible (specifically the NT). This, of course, is where the interest and the battle-lines are drawn. But surprisingly, Ehrman sides with evangelicals against most liberal theologians for one very important point—indeed, for his main thesis—that the ancient Greco-Roman world, including the ancient church, decidedly rejected any documents written in someone else’s name. This view has been held by evangelicals for a long, long time. Moderate and liberal scholars have rejected it, finding at best paltry evidence to support their claims that the ancient church embraced benign forgeries. In his important work, The Making of the New Testament Documents (Leiden: Brill, 1999), evangelical NT scholar E. Earle Ellis discusses the possibility of benign forgeries, or “‘Innocent’ Apostolic Pseudepigrapha.” He concludes (324):

          “In the patristic church apostolic pseudepigrapha, when discovered, were excluded from the church’s canon. This applied whether or not the pseudepigrapha were orthodox or heretical.

          The hypothesis of innocent apostolic pseudepigrapha appears to be designed to defend the canonicity of certain New Testament writings that are, at the same time, regarded as pseudepigrapha. It is a modern invention that has no evident basis in the attitude or writings of the apostolic and patristic church…”

          In this regard, Ehrman has aligned himself with the historic evangelical position, though he never acknowledges this. Significantly, his argument against liberal scholarship on this point is that the evidence doesn’t support their view, even though their position would be what Ehrman often refers to as the consensus of critical scholars. That phrase is loaded: it essentially means the consensus of those people who normally agree with Ehrman on various issues regarding Scripture (hence critical). Rather conveniently, it ignores the great body of scholars who would disagree with him and with other liberal scholars—namely, evangelical as well as many Catholic and Orthodox scholars. Indeed, if one were to poll all NT professors, there would be no consensus over the authorship of the Pastoral letters, 2 Thessalonians, Ephesians, or Colossians (though for all of these letters, when all three confessions of the Christian faith are considered, most biblical scholars would probably see them as authentic; see Ben Witherington’s discussion on this here and here). And for the non-Pauline letters, the only NT book that would achieve anything close to a consensus against apostolic authorship would be 2 Peter. Even here, there are many notable exceptions. By reducing the pool to what Ehrman euphemistically calls critical scholars (as though evangelicals cannot be critical), he is able to shape public opinion by systematic misinformation.

          Interestingly, where appeal to the consensus suits his purposes, sometimes that is his only argument. But when it goes against his views, he brings in evidence—evidence that evangelicals have long embraced.

          Ehrman’s fundamental thesis, then, is refreshing in that it devours a sacred cow of liberal scholarship and puts the issue of the authorship of NT letters on an evidential basis. Finally, here is one liberal scholar with whom evangelicals can find common ground: If these books are not written by their purported authors, then they are intentionally deceptive and the early church was wrong to accept them. This focuses the debate on the data rather than sidestepping it with banal, worn-out diatribe about the canonicity of pseudepigrapha. As T. L. Wilder has argued (Pseudonymity, the New Testament, and Deception: An Inquiry into Intention and Reception [Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 2004] 254-55), if it is true that some NT books are forgeries, such books must be expunged from sacred Scripture.

          Ehrman puts himself at risk at this very point; he has to back up his assertions with other arguments that certain NT writings are forgeries. Major gaps in his presentation, however, are seen: Nowhere, for example, does he discuss the patristic testimony about the authorship of the thirteen letters by Paul. Routinely, biblical scholars wrestle with internal evidence (indications within the disputed NT letters) and external evidence (patristic testimony). And it is here that the evidence is overwhelmingly in support of apostolic authorship: the unequivocal testimony of these ancient authors—some reaching back to the late first century—is that Paul wrote all thirteen NT letters that bear his name, Peter wrote 1 Peter, and John wrote 1 John. As for the rest, there is some doubt raised about authorship from time to time—particularly over 2 Peter—a fact that shows that the ancients were not duped dolts but engaged in reason and research on the matter.

          Ehrman however ratchets up the discussion with statistical analysis. After discussing only a part of the data (word usage) that makes up an author’s style, Ehrman concludes: “In almost every study done [in the last ninety years], it is clear that the word usage of the Pastorals is different from that in Paul’s other letters” (98). The documentation at this point cites but one author, Armin Baum, who argues, contra Ehrman, that Paul wrote the Pastorals! Further, Ehrman fails to mention the most recent sophisticated computer-assisted researches by Anthony Kenny, A Stylometric Study of the New Testament (NY: Oxford University Press, 1986), and K. J. Neumann, The Authenticity of the Pauline Epistles in the Light of Stylostatistical Analysis (Atlanta: Scholars, 1990). Kenny’s research concludes that, according to computer analysis, only 1 and 2 Timothy of the Pastorals are Pauline, while Titus is not. Yet no scholar, as far as I know, makes this claim on other grounds: the Pastorals are virtually always seen as a unit, written by the same author, whether Paul or someone else (though sometimes 2 Timothy, not Titus, is viewed as written by a different author than 1 Timothy and Titus). And Neumann, in spite of expecting quite different results, notes somberly that “The hopes did not materialize that the greater labor connected with several syntactic-category indices might produce some very significant criteria. … there is more variability within authors than anticipated” (205). In one test, 2 Thessalonians and 1 Peter both lined up with Paul’s writing style perfectly; in another, Revelation, chapters 2 and 3 were considered Pauline! No wonder Neumann concludes, “Christian authors, especially Paul, are not distinguished by the indices chosen” (213). Surely, these are not the modern sophisticated statistical studies that Ehrman is thinking of, but neither does he mention any in support of his views.


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            Bizbird6 says:

            You are very verbose but you say nothing new or interesting . Where is the Proof? The Burden of Proof lies with you to prove the existence of God or the validity of the Bible, not vice versa. You criticize Erhman for lack of proof, but where is your proofs? Go ahead and prove that Mathew wrote “Mathew” or that Mark wrote “Mark”. You don’t have it, otherwise you would have given it a long time ago, without all this Verbose nonsense. Again, stop all this verbose junk and get to the main point. Just give the proofs!


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    GerryD says:

    Some more quotes to consider:
    Dr. Chandra Wickramasinghe is professor and chairman of the Department of Applied Mathematics and Astronomy, University College, Cardiff, Wales.

    Precious little in the way of biochemical evolution could have happened on the earth. If one counts the number of trial assemblies of amino acids that are needed to give rise to the enzymes, the probability of their discovery by random shufflings turns out to be less than one in ten to the 40 thousand.”

    Neither Sr. Fred Hoyle nor Professor Wickramasinghe accept the Genesis account of creation, but each maintains that wherever life occurs in this universe, it had to be created. They further reject Darwinian evolution itself. If anything is ten to the 50th power or less chance, it will never happen, even cosmically, in the whole universe.23

    In the human body, DNA “programs” all characteristics such as hair, skin, eyes, and height. DNA determines the arrangement for 206 bones, 600 muscles, 10,000 auditory nerve fibers, two million optic nerve fibers, 100 billion nerve cells, 400 billion feet of blood vessels and capillaries and so on. Such extraordinary sophistication can only reflect intelligent design.24 Scott Huse is a teacher and principal of Pinecrest Bible Training Center, Salisbury Center, New York. He also lectures on college campuses. He holds the following degrees: B.S., M.S., M.R.E., Th.D., and Ph. D.

    Dr. Francis Crick, Nobel Prize winner and biochemist, was the co-discoverer of the structure of the DNA molecule. “A curious flaw of human nature is to permit the imagery of a catchy phrase to shape one’s reasoning. Haldane’s hot dilute soup became “primordial soup,” a feature that has been popularized for nearly 50 years without geologic evidence that it ever existed.20

    Noted astronomer Fred Hoyle uses the Rubik cube to illustrate the odds of getting a single molecule, in this case a biopolymer. Biopolymers are biological polymers, i.e., large molecules such as nucleic acids or proteins. In the fascinating illustration below, he calls the idea that chance could originate a biopolymer “nonsense of a high order”:

    At all events, anyone with even a nodding acquaintance with the Rubik cube will concede the near-impossibility of a solution being obtained by a blind person moving the cubic faces at random. Now imagine 1050 blind persons each with a scrambled Rubik cube, and try to conceive of the chance of them all simultaneously arriving at the solved form. You then have the chance of arriving by random shuffling at just one of the many biopolymers on which life depends. The notion that not only biopolymers but the operating programme of a living cell could be arrived at by chance in a primordial organic soup here on the Earth is evidently nonsense of a high order.31

    In his book, Origins—A Skeptic’s Guide to the Creation of Life on Earth, Robert Shapiro comments concerning the probabilities calculated by Morowitz:

    The improbability involved in generating even one bacterium is so large that it reduces all considerations of time and space to nothingness. Given such odds, the time until the black holes evaporate and the space to the ends of the universe would make no difference at all. If we were to wait, we would truly be waiting for a miracle.43

    Many more at http://www.tedmontgomery.com/bblovrvw/creation/crea-evol.html


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Gerry:

      Thanks for this. I am in the process of writing an essay on the origin of life and I may utilize some of this info that you have provided.

      Scott


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    Dear God Evidence,
    I would like your permission to take some of your quotes about evidence for God by the great scientists and post them on my web page http://www.reconciliationoutreach.net. I would like to attribute the source to you correctly.
    Thank you for the magnificent job in collecting these wonderful quotes,
    sincerely,
    Paul O’Higgins


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      Chase200mph says:

      Dear religatards, Charles Darwin made no such claim and was being threatened by the Church. Second, god was a very heavily used word to express nature. The fact that Darwin was a Christian is irrelevant as we’re any of his beliefs. You really are grasping at straws and your fallacy in reasoning is called an affirmation of consequent. Next!


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        Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

        Chase200mph,

        This Darwin quote is straight out of his book The Descent of Man. Denying this historical fact will only serve to diminish your credibility.

        Darwin was being threatened by the Church? I challenge you to cite an historian from an accredited university to back up this claim. Hint: You will not, because you cannot, because no such historian exists.

        I will say the same thing which I have said to other atheists who come to this website posting stridently rhetorical comments: The angry rhetorical nature of your comments betrays the ideological and psychological (as opposed to rational) source of your atheist views.


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      Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Paul,

      Feel free to do so. God bless!

      Scott


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    Caleb Neff says:

    So I received a notification that Bizbird6 said the following:

    God NEVER created something from nothing. The Bible is a book of fiction with no proof at all.
    There is NOT even proof that God exist!
    The Universe does NOT need to be created. It was NEVER created.
    The Universe always existed, while God has NEVER existed.

    When I browsed through the comments, the date was from October, 2013…
    Well, anyway, I was disappointed, since we already went on that merry-go-round.
    We already covered why:
    1- The universe had a beginning.
    2- Even if it didn’t, it is contingent.


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    Paula says:

    Keep on quoting scientists who lived a hundred or six hundred years ago who believed in a god. So what? They didn’t understand how the universe got started or how evolution happened. God of the gaps argument. Argument from popularity.


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      Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Paula,

      Did you really read the quotes? Many of them were made by prominent scientists very recently. Among just the first six quotes there are Nobel Prize winning physicists from 1979 and 1993, and a physicist who won the Kelvin Medal (issued by the Institute of Physics) in 2011.

      How the universe got started shows that there is no God?! I’m afraid that you have it completely backwards. Big Bang science has very conclusively demonstrated that the universe (including matter, energy, time and space) began at the Big Bang. Since nothing can cause itself, and since everything with a beginning requires a cause, the cause of the universe must be immaterial, energy-less, timeless, and space-less. This is the law of causation, without which, science would be impossible.

      Suggesting that some yet-to-be-discovered mindless material process created the universe is a materialism-of-the-gaps argument….and a very ridiculous one at that. Because matter (as well as time, space, and energy) began at the Big Bang, the suggestion that, “Science will some day explain how a mindless material process created the universe” is every bit as absurd as the statement, “Science will some day explain how I gave birth to myself, instead of my mother.”

      A materialistic explanation for the origin of the material universe is impossible, even in principle.

      This is why the astrophysicist Hugh Ross (a post doctoral fellow at the California Institute of Technology) writes :

      “Astronomers who do not draw theistic or deistic conclusions are becoming rare, and even the few dissenters hint that the tide is against them. Geoffrey Burbidge, of the University of California at San Diego, complains that his fellow astronomers are rushing off to join ‘the First Church of Christ of the Big Bang.’”

      It is also why, for example, the astronomer, physicist and founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies Robert Jastrow writes:

      “Astronomers now find they have painted themselves into a corner because they have proven, by their own methods, that the world began abruptly in an act of creation to which you can trace the seeds of every star, every planet, every living thing in this cosmos and on the earth. And they have found that all this happened as a product of forces they cannot hope to discover…. That there are what I or anyone would call supernatural forces at work is now, I think, a scientifically proven fact.”

      Next, you suggest that “how evolution happened” shows that there is no God. This is a popular stance among atheists, but also ridiculous. Does showing how a car was manufactured demonstrate that there were no intelligent agents (people) involved in making the car?

      The suggestion that evolution is an alternate explanation for God commits what is known in philosophy as a “category mistake,” because it confuses different levels of causation. The following two statements commit the same category mistake:

      “Life was not created by God, but rather, by natural processes.”

      “Cars are not created by people, but rather, by manufacturing processes.”

      Further, evolution can never explain the origin of life from non-living matter since evolution only works on things which are already alive. The Darwinian mechanism of random mutation of genes and natural selection of reproductive offspring, quite obviously, only works on that which has genes to mutate and reproductive offspring to naturally select….namely, living things. It does not work on mud.

      Yes, the atheistic view is very popular among academics for psychological reasons (distaste with having to answer to a higher power), but unless you can come up with some sort of logical argument to support your stance, it is you who are committing an “argument from popularity.”

      I am very extremely curious to hear your explanation of how mindless material processes could be responsible for the origin of the material universe, and how a process that only works on things which are already alive (Darwinian evolution) could be responsible for the origin of life from non-living matter.

      Scott


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    Abu Dawud says:

    Peace.

    I enjoyed these quotes, nice to see religious scientists speak out openly about science and religion.

    “And the heaven We constructed with strenght, and indeed We are it’s expander.”

    When was it first suggested that the univers was expanding by any scientist? In 1927. Later Hubble confirmed this in 1927.

    How can atheist try to sneak their way out of this being a revalation from God.


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    Adrian says:

    Hey Scott,
    Just wanted to say well done on the arguments. Your comments are very well thought out and I am with you on everything you have stated. This is an awesome website for reference. God bless.

    Thanks.

    Adrian.


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      Adrian:

      Thanks very much. I greatly appreciate the positive feedback. Feel free to email me with any questions you may have (by using the “contact” link).

      Scott


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    Bizbird6 says:

    Don’t give me any junk quotes. JUST GIVE ME THE PROOFS AND FACTS, and NOT OPINIONS!


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      RATIONAL DUDE says:

      I must be an idiot to keep talking with someone who accuses people who disagree with him of being ‘liars’, and who is endlessly and disgustingly hypocritical…. *Smiles.* The fact that he “can’t stop laughing,” however, tells me that he is at least subconsciously aware of his failing position as an atheist.

      Proof that the universe needs God to uphold it? I already gave you that. Let me try again, but this is the last time, unless you are willing to give an actual rebuttal.
      Let ‘the universe,’ refer to “the whole system of material states of affairs that are capable of performing work.”

      Why the Universe is Not Self-Existing:
      1- The universe is identical to the set of non-self-existing things S.
      2- It is possible for every member in this set to cease to exist.
      3- (1&2) Therefore, it is possible for the universe (which is identical to this set) to cease to exist.

      You claim that matter-energy cannot be created or destroyed. This is an outdated notion; Roger Penrose, Victor Stenger, Lawrence Krauss, and Stephen Hawking have all told us that the total matter-energy in the universe is equal to zero: the gravitational energy and the matter-energy together add up to zero. The First Law of Thermodynamics would not be violated by creating matter-energy in this way.
      Your argument is also guilty of begging the question: it assumes that matter has real existence of its own, when one of the theses on this site is that matter is just one of God’s ideas.
      Now that I have this out of the way, I will try to prove that the universe had a beginning:

      The Universe Had a Beginning:
      1- Whatever had/will have an end had a beginning.
      2- The universe will end.
      3- Therefore, the universe had a beginning.

      The Second Law of Thermodynamics tells us that the universe will eventually run out of usable energy to perform work with, and die. Even if its corpse continues to exist in this dead state, that is not the universe; when you die, even if you leave a corpse behind, you don’t continue to exist, do you? The universe, defined above, will end, period.


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    Bizbird6 says:

    Hah! Hah! Hah! Hah! Sorry, but I can NOT stop laughing!

    Someone has proof that the Universe had a beginning?

    I don’t believe it! I challenge YOU to EXPLAIN IT TO ME!!!!

    I am sure that you can do so very easily!

    But please, please do not be so VERBOSE!

    Please do it with 120 words or less!

    I still can not STOP LAUGHING!


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      Bibird6:

      Are you going to limit me to 120 words or less despite the huge volume of your previous replies?

      You say that you “can NOT stop laughing!”

      When you are done laughing, you may want to take notice of the fact that the belief that the universal is eternal has been completely and finally discredited by modern physics, including by Einsteins’ General Theory of Relativity…as I point out in Isn’t the Universe Eternal…This doing away with the need for a creator?

      Laughing will never be a substitute for furnishing a logically constructed, fact-based argument…no matter how you shake it. Rather, saying that you are “laughing” is a way to try and compensate for the logical failings of your arguments by using rhetoric to compensate for a lack of logic.

      This should be thoroughly transparent to any intelligent third-party viewer of this discussion.

      Scott


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        Bizbird6 says:

        YOU LIE, LIE , LIE!!!

        The Universe as eternal has NOT been “finally discredited by modern physics, including by Einsteins’ General Theory of Relativity”.

        I have NEVER HEARD SUCH Baloney in my LIFE!!!
        I am tired of hearing such BS nonsense!

        You just lost all credibility!

        You throw a bunch of VERBOSE GARBAGE and I am not going to waste any more time with you!

        Good-bye and take care!


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          Satria says:

          Dear Bizbird6,

          Assuming that you sincerely don’t believe in the existence of a creator, I urge you to pursue further studies in any natural science field. God willing, you will come to a point where you are forced to believe in the existence of a creator. This I guarantee.


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            Philip Maguire says:

            The motivation for conquest of The Americas was wealth. What would it benefit Christianity to kill those it wanted to convert? There was frequently conflict between missionaries and colonisers. The story of the Jesuit Reductions is a good example. I think you’d better familarise yourself with what actually happened than peddle revisionist myth.


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          Bizbird6:

          I am sorry that this has provided a shock to your worldview. Please specify which parts of my essay are “lies.”

          Scott


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    Bizbird6 says:

    Who killed some 3000 innocent people in NY City in 2001, Believers or Non-believers?
    If these BELIEVING Muslim were Atheists or Agnostics, these 3000 or so New York victims would be alive today.
    Religion results in far more Harm and Evil than good.
    Look at all those religious wars, the Inquisition, burning of heretics, and suicidal bombings where thousands were victims.
    It is not of LACK of belief, but strong BELIEF in religion that causes all this Harm and Evil in the World.
    It would be much better for the World if we ALL ABANDON TRADITIONAL Religion and adopt a Non-religious Belief.


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      Bizbird6:

      You ask, “Who killed some 3000 innocent people in NY City in 2001, Believers or Non-believers?” My first reply is that atheists are fond of referring to themselves as “non-believers,” but, as I point out in Why believing precedes knowing and EVERYONE has a faith, one can only disbelieve in God from the vantage point of SOME OTHER BELIEF, not from the vantage point of no beliefs whatsoever. An excerpt from that essay:
      —–
      Atheists are “skeptical” of Christianity (etc.), but are very rarely skeptical of the belief system that is alternately referred to as materialism or naturalism. This belief system says that the material world is all that exists and that therefore all natural phenomena will eventually be explainable in materialistic terms. The eminent philosopher of science Karl Popper contemptuously refers to this belief as “promissory materialism,” since it promises to eventually explain everything (including consciousness, the origin of life, the origin of the universe, etc.) in material terms.
      —–
      And the problems for the atheist belief in materialism/naturalism are ENORMOUS, as I point out in such essays as God is real: Why modern physics has discredited atheism and Why atheism is self-defeating. As a Christian, I am extremely skeptical of the belief system of naturalism/materialism because it is completely unsupportable either scientifically or philosophically.

      Lastly, I point out in Doesn’t religion cause killing? that the regimes which were by FAR the most prolific killers in all of human history were either atheist, or rationalized their killing with atheist philosophy. Communism was an officially atheist political philosophy and the estimates for the number of people killed by communism run as high as 110 million. The Nazis rationalized their killing with atheist philosophy (as I detail in the essay)…and do I even need to go into what prolific killers the Nazis were?


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    Bizbird6 says:

    The Philosophy of skeptical and critical science is totally OPPOSITE of blind faith religion and is NEVER compatible.


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      Bizbird6:

      I reply to your contention that “The Philosophy of skeptical and critical science is totally OPPOSITE of blind faith religion and is NEVER compatible” in Why believing precedes knowing and EVERYONE has a faith. A copied and pasted excerpt:

      ——
      Many atheists would have you believe that they hold no beliefs which are not the product of scientific inquiry. But, unfortunately for atheists who believe this, such a state of affairs is actually impossible. The person who disbelieves in God can only do so from the vantage point of some other belief which precedes and therefore underlies scientific inquiry…not from the vantage point of a “skeptical“ lack of any belief. It is impossible to be a complete “skeptic” since to be skeptical of all beliefs would entail having no beliefs.

      Timothy Keller deftly points out that even the most hardened “skeptic” has a faith, in The Reason for God:

      But even as believers should learn to look for reasons behind their faith, skeptics must learn to look for a type of faith hidden within their reasoning. All doubts, however skeptical and cynical they may seem, are really a set of alternate beliefs. You cannot doubt Belief A except from a position of faith in Belief B. For example, if you doubt Christianity because, “There can’t be just one true religion,” you must recognize that this statement is itself an act of faith. No one can prove it empirically, and it is not a universal truth that everyone accepts. If you went to the Middle East and said, “There can’t be just one true religion,” nearly everyone would say, “Why not?” The reason you doubt Christianity’s Belief A is because you hold unprovable Belief B. Every doubt, therefore is based on a leap of faith.

      Atheists are “skeptical” of Christianity (etc.), but are very rarely skeptical of the belief system that is alternately referred to as materialism or naturalism. This belief system says that the material world is all that exists and that therefore all natural phenomena will eventually be explainable in materialistic terms. The eminent philosopher of science Karl Popper contemptuously refers to this belief as “promissory materialism,” since it promises to eventually explain everything (including consciousness, the origin of life, the origin of the universe, etc.) in material terms.

      And the philosopher of science Michael Polanyi (who was also an Oxford University chemist, elected to the Royal Society) demonstrates why it is necessary to first believe before one can know. In other words, belief precedes knowing. Mark T. Mitchell discusses Polanyi’s philosophical insights in his article The False Dilemma of Modernity:

      …the rationalist, who refuses to begin with any commitment or faith and instead seeks to proceed on the basis of reason alone, actually cannot avoid beginning with faith. At the simplest level, he necessarily begins with a faith in his rational faculties. Furthermore, as Polanyi argues, all thinking persons necessarily depend on a tacit commitment to a particular tradition, which includes one’s language and one’s culture, and even to articulate a rejection of one’s tradition requires a dependence on resources provided by that tradition.
      —–
      Further, your contention that science and religion are not compatible is contradicted by many of the most important contributors to modern science. Some citations:

      “A scientific discovery is also a religious discovery. There is no conflict between science and religion. Our knowledge of God is made larger with every discovery we make about the world.”

      Joseph H. Taylor, Jr., who received the 1993 Nobel Prize in Physics for the discovery of the first known binary pulsar, and for his work which supported the Big Bang theory of the creation of the universe.

      .

      “The more I study science, the more I believe in God.”

      “I want to know how God created this world. I am not interested in this or that phenomenon. I want to know his thoughts; the rest are details.”

      Albert Einstein
      .

      “Both religion and science require a belief in God. For believers, God is in the beginning, and for physicists He is at the end of all considerations… To the former He is the foundation, to the latter, the crown of the edifice of every generalized world view.”

      “There can never be any real opposition between religion and science; for the one is the complement of the other. Every serious and reflective person realizes, I think, that the religious element in his nature must be recognized and cultivated if all the powers of the human soul are to act together in perfect balance and harmony. And indeed it was not by accident that the greatest thinkers of all ages were deeply religious souls.”

      –Max Planck, (the Nobel Prize winning physicist considered to be the founder of quantum theory, and one of the most important physicists of the 20th century, indeed of all time).

      Religion and Natural Science (Lecture Given 1937) Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers, trans. F. Gaynor (New York, 1949), pp. 184

      “The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.”

      “In the history of science, ever since the famous trial of Galileo, it has repeatedly been claimed that scientific truth cannot be reconciled with the religious interpretation of the world. Although I am now convinced that scientific truth is unassailable in its own field, I have never found it possible to dismiss the content of religious thinking as simply part of an outmoded phase in the consciousness of mankind, a part we shall have to give up from now on. Thus in the course of my life I have repeatedly been compelled to ponder on the relationship of these two regions of thought, for I have never been able to doubt the reality of that to which they point.”

      –Werner Heisenberg
      , who was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics for the creation of quantum mechanics (which is absolutely crucial to modern science).

      Bizbird, these are just a few citations. This post if full of many more from the most important contributors to modern science.


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    Dawn says:

    To discount an infinite God in an infinite universe, you, yourself, have to have infinite knowledge of the entire universe. What you are denying exists is an omniscient being. In order to truly deny that, you, yourself, have to be omniscient.

    It is truly amazing how much atheists must know!


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    GerryD says:

    Only people who hate science & rationality will mock & lie about the very worldview that pioneered so much science& continue to contribute to it. It’s like cutting of the legs you are standing on.
    The greatest figures of the scientific revolution Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, Newton,Boyle, Nightingale (who God spoke to directly & called her to His service), Pasteur, Mendel, Dr. Werner Von Braun (father of space science&1st director of NASA), Dr. Francis Collins (director of human genome project), Nobel prize winners like William Phillip & Carl Sandage, MRI inventor Damadian & many other top scientists in the past & present were all profound Christians. Without the Bible & Biblical scientists, you wouldn’t have modern science or at best you would be centuries behind the present.

    Of all the 1000s of cultures in history, it was the Biblical & Judeo/Christian views that built the foundations & infrastructure of modern science (modern scientific method, peer review process, 1st scientific journals, falsification, occam’s razor, etc.) & pioneered most of its branches. Christian influence led to the first universities (the home for science), in Paris & Bologna, then Oxford & Cambridge followed fueled by the faith’s embrace of equality, as all are created in God’s image. The Bible & its principles & specific concepts in many areas inspired numerous human rights campaigns, centers for scientific research, medical care, democracy, free speech & more. This also helped Jews & Protestants win ~86% of the Nobel prizes in science from 1900-1990.

    People who ridicule religion are like immature children who want to disown the parents that lovingly sacrificed everything for them. Atheism/materialism,etc. malign history to suit their dogma &immorally exclude Christianity from what it built.


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Exactly… and that is much of the reason that I launched this website. I am trying to help close the divide between what the science actually says about God, and what atheist ideologues in academia and the media want us to believe the science says about God.

      The fact that Darwinian evolution is commonly used as a rationalization for atheism when it does not even attempt to explain the origin of life (but only life’s diversification) speaks volumes. Specifically, it says that atheist ideologues in the media and academia have been very successful in hoodwinking the public. Please read my essay titled Why evolution cannot be used to rationalize atheism in the “snippets” section if you have not already.


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    GerryD says:

    Steve
    perhaps this might be relevant.
    “[W]hile Divine truth is spiritual, and can only be spiritually discerned, human error is natural, and can be met on its own ground. We cannot “reason” men into the kingdom of God, but by reasoning we can expose errors which prejudice them against it.”

    – Sir Robert Anderson, The Bible and Modern Criticism, 5th ed. (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1905), p. 27
    God bless!!


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Well put. I once heard a saying of a similar nature: “A person convinced against their will, shall be of the same opinion still.”

      In other words, human nature is such that people will never believe something that they don’t want to believe. There must be an open heart before there can be an open mind.


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    Steve says:

    Albert Einstien, on his death bed in Princeton Hospital, asked for two things only, pencil and paper. He began to write what many believe to be his greatest discovery. Unfortunatly he did not get to finish these papers, because he had passed away. From what his last memoirs told us, was that he was feeling guilty and fearfull, because all his discoveries and theories, and beliefs, did not include or coinside with Gods work. Now, this was a brilliant man who had made many break throughs in facts and science. Not to mention the awards he had accumulated. Including Nobel. I dont know about you….but this really had a great impression on me, and many other non belivers…………So! On his death bed he made his peace with God, and himself, for according to his last writtings he did, all his life have the Lord in his heart and mind. I guess because he had no proof of God, and being a scientist as we know is based on fact and proof. He could not commit to himself and his peers, what he really believed. If he did it would have been a major contradiction of almost all his accomplishments, but on his death bed he revealed to him self and others what he trully felt. Now! Thats the power of the Lord.


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      GerryD says:

      Deo gratias!


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    Terry S says:

    Scott: Yes they are because the law of causation (without which science would be impossible) requires that everything with a beginning has a cause.

    Terry: Here we have a simple case of cart in front of horse. There is no observable evidence to support the beginning of the universe.

    Scott “But Big Bang cosmology has shown that the universe is NOT eternal.”

    Terry The Big Bang theory does not claim the BB was the beginning of the universe. It does not suggest there was “nothing” prior to the expansion. In fact it does claim there was the singularity without any explanation of where it came from or what was before it.

    Terry: Once again we have a theist trying to use a theory as some kind of proof.

    The author of the Arizona Atheist blog asked Vilenkin if his theorem with Guth and Borde proves that the universe had a beginning, and Vilenkin responded:

    “If someone asks me whether or not the theorem I proved with Borde and Guth implies that the universe had a beginning, I would say that the short answer is “yes”. If you are willing to get into subtleties, then the answer is “No, but…” So, there are ways to get around having a beginning, but then you are forced to have something nearly as special as a beginning.”

    This demonstrates that the universe “having to have” a beginning is inconclusive and completely unproven. Plus, as I have pointed out before. In order for the universe to have a beginning there would have had to be a supernatural event. We have no observable evidence to support the supernatural. Plus when we take into the consideration the source of the supernatural concept (the church) and the probability of the supernatural actually existing (slim to none) It is easily dismissed as feldercarb.

    What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof. ……..Christopher Hitchens

    So now what we have here are two claims that have no observable evidence (the beginning of the universe and the supernatural) being used by Scott as if they have already been proven. The “truth” is they are not conclusive. They are not even reasonable and fit squarely into the absurd category.

    This blog titled: “Debunking William Lane Craig” could just as easily have been titled: “Debunking Scott Youngren”
    http://debunkingwlc.wordpress.com/2010/07/14/borde-guth-vilenkin/

    Does this look familiar?

    [snippet]
    “It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning (pg. 176).”

    Scott: What did I call a fact? Feel free to doubt the law of causation.

    Terry: It wasn’t the law of causation that I was referring to it was the beginning of the universe I was referring to. But you already know that don’t you?

    Scott: AND AGAIN, Terry: An infinitely old universe is impossible by the laws of mathematics and physics.

    Terry: AND AGAIN, Scott: No it isn’t. The laws of mathematics and physics are inconclusive. You should know that if you know so much about science.

    Please respond to this point by doing something besides reasserting your unsupportable view that the universe is eternal despite the fact that this is not possible. I will again copy and paste what the physicist Alexander Vilenkin had to say about this matter (in regard to his proof that there was a cosmic beginning):

    “It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning. (Many Worlds in One [New York: Hill and Wang, 2006], p.176).”

    Terry: On the same page Vilenkin writes:

    “Theologians have often welcomed any evidence for the beginning of the universe, regarding it as evidence for the existence of God … So what do we make of a proof that the beginning is unavoidable? Is it a proof of the existence of God? This view would be far too simplistic. Anyone who attempts to understand the origin of the universe should be prepared to address its logical paradoxes. In this regard, the theorem that I proved with my colleagues does not give much of an advantage to the theologian over the scientist.”

    The point Vilenkin is making here is: A beginning of the universe does not necessarily mean that it was a result of the supernatural (god).

    Scott: Terry, I know that these facts have a hard time penetrating your ideologically based perceptual filter

    Terry: Terry, I know that these facts have a hard time penetrating your theistically based perceptual filter

    Scott: READERS PLEASE TAKE NOTE. One way to convince yourself that your views are correct is to only accept the arguments of people who agree with you…and to refuse to even respond to the arguments of people who disagree with you. Because Robert J. Spitzer is a catholic priest, Terry considers his arguments unacceptable. Please note that a refusal to even consider the arguments of a person who disagrees with you because he disagrees with you is a clear manifestation of an ideologically based perceptual filter.

    Terry: READERS PLEASE TAKE NOTE. One way to convince yourself that your views are correct is to only accept the arguments of people who agree with you. Because Robert J. Spitzer is a catholic priest, Scott considers his arguments acceptable regardless of the absurdities of his claims. Please note that accepting the arguments of a person who agrees with you because he agrees with you is a clear manifestation of a theistical based perceptual filter.

    Terry: Regarding Robert J. Spitzer (Priest). The fact that this person is clearly a member of a religous cult gives me more than enough reason to dismiss his claims as nothing more than fantasy and conditioning from his cult leaders and members.

    Dear Scott, all of your petty little essays combined are not evidence of anything. They are opinions. AGAIN: Opinions have no validity. That is just the way it is. Get over it.


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Terry: Here we have a simple case of cart in front of horse. There is no observable evidence to support the beginning of the universe.

      Scott: Except that we very clearly do have a wealth of evidence supporting this conclusion. Click on this article to see what I mean. Some important excerpts:

      “Observational evidence for the Big Bang includes the analysis of the spectrum of light from galaxies, which reveal a shift towards longer wavelengths proportional to each galaxy’s distance in a relationship described by Hubble’s law.”

      “The next most important observational evidence was the discovery of cosmic microwave background radiation in 1964.”

      “A third important line of evidence is the relative proportion of light elements in the universe, which is a close match to predictions for the formation of light elements in the first minutes of the universe, according to Big Bang nucleosynthesis. Extrapolation of the expansion of the universe backwards in time using general relativity yields an infinite density and temperature at a finite time in the past.”

      Terry: The Big Bang theory does not claim the BB was the beginning of the universe. It does not suggest there was “nothing” prior to the expansion. In fact it does claim there was the singularity without any explanation of where it came from or what was before it.

      Scott: Except that it very clearly does claim this. Click on this article from physicist Stephen Hawking to see what I mean. Key excerpt:

      “In this lecture, I would like to discuss whether time itself has a beginning, and whether it will have an end. All the evidence seems to indicate, that the universe has not existed forever, but that it had a beginning, about 15 billion years ago. This is probably the most remarkable discovery of modern cosmology.”

      Terry: Once again, we have a theist trying to use a theory as some sort of proof.

      Scott: The laws of mathematics are not a theory, Terry. They are fixed and unchangeable. Two plus two will never equal anything but four, regardless of what future turn science may take. Terry, you failed to respond to what mathematicians say about the concept of the infinite, so I will again copy and paste so that you can have another chance to respond:

      David Hilbert (among the greatest mathematicians of the 20th century) said:

      “The infinite [as in infinite past time] is nowhere to be found in reality. It neither exists in nature nor provides a legitimate basis for rational thought. The role that remains for the infinite…is solely that of an idea.”

      Many other contemporary mathematicians (such as mathematicians Frankel, Rotman, Kneebone, Zermelo, and Robinson) draw the same conclusion. Mathematicians Rotman and Kneebone state in The Theory of Sets and Transfinite Numbers:

      “The conception of an infinite sequence of choices (or any other acts)…is a mathematical fiction—an idealization of what is imaginable only in finite cases.”

      Further, Terry, your hope for an infinite universe relies upon an unravelling of the second law of thermodynamics, as Stephen Hawking points out in his lecture to which I have linked you.

      Terry: Vilenkin writes, “If someone asks me whether or not the theorem I proved with Borde and Guth implies that the universe had a beginning, I would say that the short answer is “yes”. If you are willing to get into subtleties, then the answer is “No, but…” So, there are ways to get around having a beginning, but then you are forced to have something nearly as special as a beginning.”

      Scott: OK then, what is this “something nearly as special as a beginning” that you are proposing? Another “it just is” atheist leap of faith, I presume? To use this statement from Vilenkin to counter his short answer of “yes,” you are going to have to propose just what this “something special” is.

      But I enjoy debating you so much, Terry, that I am going to play the game on your turf (as I said in my other comment). A copy and paste from that comment:

      You want an infinitely old universe? YOU GOT IT! I will start with the assumption that the universe is infinitely old, or if not, that there are an infinite number of universes that predate our universe (in a multiverse or oscillating universe, etc. scenario).

      Even with an infinitely old universe (or an infinite number of universes), how does this allow for the emergence of a universe finely tuned for the existence of life?….as described in my essay entitled “Is there a God? (What is the chance that our world is the result of chance?)

      Recall that bare probabilities are causally inert and require a causal mechanism to produce any result. For example, take the statement, “If a person, hypothetically, were to live forever, that person would eventually win the lottery.” This statement is false because no matter how long a person lives, they will not win the lottery unless they actually play the lottery. Going to the convenience store on a regular basis to buy lottery tickets is the causal mechanism that enables the bare probability of of a lottery win to result in an actual lottery win.

      In a universe that is truly devoid of an intelligent and conscious foundation, how is it that these causal mechanisms that enabled the probability a finely tuned universe came to be? The only reply that an atheist can provide is another “it just is” leap-of-faith upon which the atheist belief system is constructed.

      Furthermore, in the scenario of an infinitely old universe, the existence of the “lottery” (or the structure by which bare probabilities and causal mechanisms can interact) needs an explanation.

      Therefore, the idea that an infinitely old universe (or infinite number of universes) explains the existence of a finely tuned universe is every bit as absurd as the idea that living long enough will by itself guarantee a person a lottery win.

      Terry: On the same page Vilenkin writes:

      “Theologians have often welcomed any evidence for the beginning of the universe, regarding it as evidence for the existence of God … So what do we make of a proof that the beginning is unavoidable? Is it a proof of the existence of God? This view would be far too simplistic. Anyone who attempts to understand the origin of the universe should be prepared to address its logical paradoxes. In this regard, the theorem that I proved with my colleagues does not give much of an advantage to the theologian over the scientist.”

      Scott: Good job. You have provided us with a scientists’ religious views. By making this statement, he is making a philosophical / theological statement rather than a scientific one. Therefore, for his views to carry any weight, they must be supported by sound philosophical / theological reasoning. All he has done in the statement that you provide is state his religious views without providing any reasoning behind them.

      By the way, you are going to need to point out exactly what these “logical paradoxes” are. Merely making a vague allusion to undisclosed “logical paradoxes” amounts to obscuring an argument rather than responding to it.

      So let’s see what a philosopher has to say about this subject matter. Oxford University professor of philosophy Antony Flew writes:

      “Hume held that there is no cause of the existence of any series of physical beings beyond the sum of each member of the series. If there is a beginningless series of nonnecessary existent beings, then this is a sufficient cause for the universe as a whole. Conway rejected this objection on the grounds that ‘the causal explanations of the parts of any such whole in terms of other parts cannot add up to a causal explanation of the whole, if the items mentioned as causes are items whose own existence stands in need of causal explanation.’ So, for example, consider a software virus capable of replicating itself on computers connected by a network. The fact that a million computers have been infected by the virus does not in itself explain the existence of the self-replicating virus.”

      What Flew is driving at here, Terry, is the fact that even a universe without a beginning requires a cause. So you can have your universe without a beginning (or an infinite number of universes) if you want it. Just don’t think that this does away with the need for the universe to have a cause.

      But wait, it doesn’t stop there. I am feeling extremely generous today. I will again play the game on your turf and assume that you are correct that the universe is eternal and that it does not need a cause.

      In this uncaused, eternal universe without a conscious and intelligent foundation, how is it that there exist such things as laws of nature? How is it that there is a law of gravity? Laws of thermodynamics? Laws of motion?

      Once again, Terry, your only way out of this conundrum is to fall back on another typically atheist “it just is” leap-of-faith (upon which the atheist belief system is constructed).

      Terry: READERS PLEASE TAKE NOTE. One way to convince yourself that your views are correct is to only accept the arguments of people who agree with you. Because Robert J. Spitzer is a catholic priest, Scott considers his arguments acceptable regardless of the absurdities of his claims. Please note that accepting the arguments of a person who agrees with you because he agrees with you is a clear manifestation of a theistical based perceptual filter.

      Scott: The difference between you and I is that I respond to all opposing arguments rather than dismissing some of them a priori because they were made by someone I disagree with. If you only accept arguments made by other atheists, of course you are going to come to atheistic conclusions.

      Terry: AGAIN: Opinions have no validity.

      Scott: Oh, is that your opinion? ;) …..(Sorry, I couldn’t resist that).

      Don’t you see the contradiction in expressing your opinion that opinions don’t matter?!

      Moreover, you fail to make the distinction between an opinion grounded in a logically sound argument and an opinion that is merely a matter of personal taste.

      When, for example, the Nobel Prize winning physicist Eugene Wigner says:

      “When the province of physical theory was extended to encompass microscopic phenomena, through the creation of quantum mechanics, the concept of consciousness came to the fore again; it was not possible to formulate the laws of quantum mechanics in a fully consistent way without reference to the consciousness.”

      …he is not expressing his personal taste in terms of religious/philosophical views. Rather, he is stating a research conclusion. SImilarly, when the physicist, astronomer and founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Robert Jastrow says:

      “Astronomers now find they have painted themselves into a corner because they have proven, by their own methods, that the world began abruptly in an act of creation to which you can trace the seeds of every star, every planet, every living thing in this cosmos and on the earth. And they have found that all this happened as a product of forces they cannot hope to discover…. That there are what I or anyone would call supernatural forces at work is now, I think, a scientifically proven fact.”

      …he is stating a research conclusion, not his personal religious/philosophical views.

      Yet again, Terry, we get back to what is so typical of atheist commenters to this site: You think that by repeating something such as “there is no evidence” often enough and/or forcefully enough, while simultaneously ignoring the vast evidence, it will become true.


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    Terry S says:

    Einstein Quote:

    I cannot conceive of a God who rewards and punishes his creatures, or has a will of the kind that we experience in ourselves. Neither can I nor would I want to conceive of an individual that survives his physical death; let feeble souls, from fear or absurd egoism, cherish such thoughts. I am satisfied with the mystery of the eternity of life and with the awareness and a glimpse of the marvelous structure of the existing world, together with the devoted striving to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the Reason that manifests itself in nature. (Albert Einstein, The World as I See It) http://www.spaceandmotion.com/Albert-Einstein-Quotes.htm


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Yes, that is a valid Einstein quote. Einstein clearly and unmistakably DID believe in God, but not a personal God (he was a deist).

      Because physics is the field of science that deals with the most fundamental “big picture” aspects of our reality, a physicists opinion must be weighted heavily when considering questions such as whether it is consciousness or matter that is most fundamental (as I discuss in this essay). Consciousness is more fundamental and therefore, as the physicist, mathematician and astronomer James Jeans put it, “This brings us very near to those philosophical systems which regard the universe as a thought in the mind of its Creator, thereby reducing all discussion of material creation to futility.”

      So a physicist is uniquely qualified to comment on the scientific support for the existence of God. But when it comes to the specific attributes of God (such as whether God is personal or impersonal), a physicist has no particular qualification to comment authoritatively.

      Therefore, we should accept Einstein’s belief in God as having significance, but not his opinion that God is impersonal


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        Terry S says:

        Scott: Therefore, we should accept Einstein’s belief in God as having significance, but not his opinion that God is impersonal.

        Terry: There you go again. Injecting your beliefs on to someone who is dead and can’t defend himself. Belief in a deist god is equal to belief in no god as the deist god would not and could not ever be proven one way or the other. He could have used the deist god to avoid the label of atheist. Unfortunately the atheist label can be detrimental to one’s health or career. Atheist’s are one of the most discriminated against minorities in America where he lived for the last fifteen years of his life. Clearly though, the only thing his god has in common with your god is that they are both imaginary and man made.


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          syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

          Scott: Terry, let me introduce you to a concept known as a categorical statement. When Einstein said, “I am not an atheist, and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist,” he was making a categorical statement. Regardless of the context in which you insert this statement, the meaning is the same….unless you inserted it in a context such as the following: “I am not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist….no, I didn’t mean that, I was just joking.”

          Einstein also said, “In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.” Terry, YOU WOULD BE ONE SUCH PERSON who made Einstein angry.

          Your theory that Einstein used deism as a cover for atheism would very definitely be a transparent case of “injecting your beliefs on to someone who is dead” in light of Einstein’s unambiguous and categorical statements to the contrary.

          No, a deist (or theist) God cannot be 100% conclusively proven. But, once again, virtually nothing can be conclusively proven. You cannot conclusively prove that the sun will rise tomorrow morning, even though you could provide some extremely convincing reasons to suggest that it will. Every reasonable person would take that extremely convincing evidence and make a (very small) leap of faith that the sun will in fact rise tomorrow morning.
          If you are


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            Terry S says:

            Scott: Your theory that Einstein used deism as a cover for atheism would very definitely be a transparent case of “injecting your beliefs on to someone who is dead” in light of Einstein’s unambiguous and categorical statements to the contrary.

            Terry: That doesn’t make my theory wrong.

            Scott: No, a deist (or theist) God cannot be 100% conclusively proven.

            Terry: I would settle for 10% proven. Or even 1% proven. To date they are 0% proven.

            Scott: You cannot conclusively prove that the sun will rise tomorrow morning, even though you could provide some extremely convincing reasons to suggest that it will.

            Terry: The sun rising is not in question nor is the sun rising a supernatural event. I don’t question things like: will my brakes stop my car the next time I use them. Will my furnace come on when it gets cold enough to trigger the thermostat. I do have faith in them. But these are not of an absurd supernatural nature. The theist claim is. The atheist doesn’t ask for much. Just a little evidence. That is all. Only 1% proof would do it.


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Terry, you continue to assert that there is no evidence, and yet you have failed to post any response whatsoever to the evidence provided in my essays. This goes back to the recurring theme among atheists that I called attention to in a previous post: Many atheists seem to think that if they repeat something often enough and/or forcefully enough, it will become true. You can’t continue to assert that there is no evidence while simultaneously ignoring the evidence that I provide….and expect any rational person to take you seriously.

              Here is what I will do, Terry: I will provide a short list of questions for you to respond to and you can choose to either A) continue to ignore them and fail to post a reply OR
              B) do your best to post a logically based reply.

              Whenever you assert in the future that there is no evidence, you can bet that I will call attention to the following questions that you have failed to answer:

              1) Why should we accept your view that the universe does not need a supernatural explanation when the majority of astronomers/astrophysicists disagree with you (as I demonstrate in my post entitled “Is there a God? (What is the chance our world is the result of chance?”).

              2) Why should we accept your view that an intelligent consciousness is not the foundation of reality when the majority (if not all) of the most important contributors to modern physics (including names like Einstein, Planck, Born, Heisenberg, Schreodinger, Eddington, etc…) disagree with you (as I demonstrate in my post entitled “What it all boils down to”)? Please note that these physicists have come to this conclusion as a result of their research….research to which I provide an example.

              3) Why should we accept your view that no explanation whatsoever for the origin of life (or the aliens-from-outer-space explanation, such as atheist numero unoRichard Dawkins here suggests) is a better explanation than the explanation that life is the creation of a higher intelligence?

              4) How do you explain the existence of the universe when the universe (or multiverse or oscillating universe, or whatever) clearly had a beginning and the law of causation (without which science would be impossible) clearly dictates that everything with a beginning requires a cause? In other words, why should we accept your “it just is” explanation as being more rationally sound when this violates the law of causation?

              Terry, the next time that you make the assertion that there is no evidence, I am going to save time and just reply with a simple “1,2,3,4” in reference to these four questions that you have failed to provide any answer to whatsoever.

              Regarding Einstein, you have still failed to explain how your theory could be true in light of his categorical statement that, “In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.”


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        Terry S says:

        Scott: So a physicist is uniquely qualified to comment on the scientific support for the existence of God.

        Terry: When did physicists begin to study the supernatural? I must have missed that event. More importantly how would physicists study the supernatural? There is no “observable evidence” for them to analyze.


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          syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

          Physicists do not study the supernatural. They comment on the extremely likelihood of the existence of the supernatural. This is an entirely different undertaking than studying specific attributes of the supernatural.

          Once again, Terry, it works like this: The universe (or mulitiverse or oscillating universe, or whatever you want to believe in) had a beginning. Everything with a beginning has a cause. (This is the law of causation, without which science would be impossible). Because something cannot cause itself, the cause of the natural world cannot be natural….it must by very definition be supernatural.

          Robert J. Spitzer comments in New Proofs for the Existence of God :

          When we speak of a beginning (a point prior to which there is no physical reality), we stand at the threshold of physics and metaphysics (beyond physics). Even though science cannot be validly used to prove a metaphysical [or “supernatual”] claim (such as, “a Creator or God exists”), it can be used to maintain as highly probable a limit to physical reality (such as a beginning). This scientific evidence for a beginning can be combined with a metaphysical premise (such as “from nothing, only nothing comes”) to render a metaphysical conclusion that there must be something beyond physical reality which caused physical reality to exist (i.e., a transcendent cause).

          The worldview which equates the supernatural with superstition is based upon the completely discredited view that the universe is eternal and therefore does not require a cause.


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            Terry S says:

            Scott: Physicists do not study the supernatural.

            Terry: Correct, so they are not qualified in any way to claim it’s existence one way or another.

            Scott: They comment on the extremely likelihood of the existence of the supernatural.

            Terry: “Extreme likelihood” is nothing but an opinion, yours I suspect. We’ve been through the opinion discussion before. I see you still cling to them as if they had any real value. They still don’t.

            Scott: Once again, Terry, it works like this: The universe (or mulitiverse or oscillating universe, or whatever you want to believe in) had a beginning.

            Terry: Opinion again. There is no observable evidence to support that theory. In fact the universe does exist so existing is the default position.

            Scott: Everything with a beginning has a cause. (This is the law of causation, without which science would be impossible). Because something cannot cause itself, the cause of the natural world cannot be natural….it must by very definition be supernatural.

            Terry: WOW, now you jump from something that has no evidence to calling it a fact. What a leap of faith that one is.

            Scott: Robert J. Spitzer comments in New Proofs for the Existence of God :

            Terry: Imagine that, a priest defending the supernatural. NEXT.

            If the universe had a beginning it would mean that at one point in time (wait, time didn’t exist yet) there would of had to be nothing. Try to comprehend “nothing”. I can’t do it. The closest I can come to comprehending “nothing” is in death. Science today tells us the universe is expanding, Into “nothing”. If it is expanding into “nothing” then nothing must be something. See the problem. If “nothing” is “something” it exists and isn’t nothing is it. More likely time, space and energy have always existed. The scientist tells us matter can’t be “created” or destroyed so there you have it mate. Always existed is the only rational/logical explanation. I could go with the supernatural if it had any “real” support but it doesn’t. It is only a convenient way of saying “god did it”.


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Terry: “So they are not qualified in any way to claim it’s existence one way or another.”

              Scott: Yes they are because the law of causation (without which science would be impossible) requires that everything with a beginning has a cause. It is now completely undeniable that the universe (or multiverse or oscillating universe, or whatever you want to believe in) had a beginning by the laws of physics and mathematics. I demonstrate this conclusively in my post entitled “Isn’t the universe eternal? (Therefore doing away with the need for a creator)” in the Snippets section at the top of the main page. You have failed again and again to respond to this, Terry. If the natural universe had a beginning, it had a cause. And because something cannot cause itself, the natural universe must by necessity have a supernatural cause.

              Terry: “There is no observable evidence to support that theory” (that the universe had a beginning). “In fact the universe does exist so existing is the default position.”

              Scott: Except that there is huge observable evidence to support that theory. Since you seem unable to respond to this evidence, I will copy and paste the entire post below for you:

              A universe with a finite past requires a beginning, which in turn requires a transcendent (or supernatural) cause. This is why our universe must be eternal for atheism to be valid. But Big Bang cosmology has shown that the universe is NOT eternal. In New Proofs for the Existence of God, Robert J. Spitzer (who was assisted by Dr. Stephen Barr of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Delaware) reveals that:

              “Prior to Einstein’s publication of the General Theory of Relativity, one could have thought that supernatural design was completely unnecessary because it was believed (in accordance with Newton’s postulates) that the universe existed for an infinite amount of time with an infinite amount of space and an infinite amount of interacting content. Therefore, there would have been an infinite number of “tries” [for randomness to produce an orderly universe] to bring about virtually any degree of complexity.”

              Standard Big Bang cosmology totally changed these postulates, and reduced the total number of “tries” in the observable universe to a very finite number…..This comparatively small number of “total possible mass energy interactions in the universe for all time” revealed the extreme improbability of high degrees of complexity arising out of the universe by pure chance.

              Further, this book also states that “David Hilbert (the father of finite mathematics) has given new probative force and depth to the argument for the intrinsic finitude of past time (implying a timeless creator) in his article On The Infinite.”

              Hilbert (among the greatest mathematicians of the 20th century) said:

              “The infinite [as in infinite past time] is nowhere to be found in reality. It neither exists in nature nor provides a legitimate basis for rational thought. The role that remains for the infinite…is solely that of an idea.”

              Many other contemporary mathematicians (such as mathematicians Frankel, Rotman, Kneebone, Zermelo, and Robinson) draw the same conclusion. Mathematicians Rotman and Kneebone state in The Theory of Sets and Transfinite Numbers:

              “The conception of an infinite sequence of choices (or any other acts)…is a mathematical fiction—an idealization of what is imaginable only in finite cases.”

              And lastly, in 2003, physicists Borde, Vilenkin and Guth corroborated to formulate a proof that demonstrates that an eternal universe is not possible. It is known as the BVG theorem. Alexander Vilenkin is very blunt in regard to the implications of this proof:

              “It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning. “(Many Worlds in One [New York: Hill and Wang, 2006], p.176).

              It should be noted that this proof applies to any proposed “multiverse” or “oscillating universe,” etc. in which our universe may be situated.

              Terry, your argument is very typical of many atheists that I have encountered. You seem to think that if you continue repeating the mantra “there is no evidence,” while simultaneously failing to respond to the unassailable evidence that I provide, then eventually your mantra will become true.

              Terry: “WOW, now you jump from something that has no evidence to calling it a fact. What a leap of faith that one is.”

              Scott: What did I call a fact? Feel free to doubt the law of causation. Just realize that this means you don’t believe in science.

              Terry: Terry: Imagine that, a priest defending the supernatural. NEXT.

              If the universe had a beginning it would mean that at one point in time (wait, time didn’t exist yet) there would of had to be nothing. Try to comprehend “nothing”. I can’t do it. The closest I can come to comprehending “nothing” is in death. Science today tells us the universe is expanding, Into “nothing”. If it is expanding into “nothing” then nothing must be something. See the problem. If “nothing” is “something” it exists and isn’t nothing is it. More likely time, space and energy have always existed. The scientist tells us matter can’t be “created” or destroyed so there you have it mate. Always existed is the only rational/logical explanation. I could go with the supernatural if it had any “real” support but it doesn’t. It is only a convenient way of saying “god did it”.

              Scott: AND AGAIN, Terry: An infinitely old universe is impossible by the laws of mathematics and physics. Please respond to this point by doing something besides reasserting your unsupportable view that the universe is eternal despite the fact that this is not possible. I will again copy and paste what the physicist Alexander Vilenkin had to say about this matter (in regard to his proof that there was a cosmic beginning):

              It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning. (Many Worlds in One [New York: Hill and Wang, 2006], p.176).

              Terry, I know that these facts have a hard time penetrating your ideologically based perceptual filter, but you can’t expect anyone to take you seriously if you just keep reasserting your view that the universe is eternal despite the fact that this has been PROVEN to be impossible.

              Regarding your comment, “a priest defending the supernatural. NEXT:”

              READERS PLEASE TAKE NOTE. One way to convince yourself that your views are correct is to only accept the arguments of people who agree with you…and to refuse to even respond to the arguments of people who disagree with you. Because Robert J. Spitzer is a catholic priest, Terry considers his arguments unacceptable. Please note that a refusal to even consider the arguments of a person who disagrees with you because he disagrees with you is a clear manifestation of an ideologically based perceptual filter.

              Terry: “If the universe had a beginning it would mean that at one point in time (wait, time didn’t exist yet) there would of had to be nothing.”

              Scott: Nothingness cannot exist at a point in time because when you have time, you don’t really have nothingness. Time is something as opposed to nothing.


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    Terry S says:

    “I want to know how God created this world. I am not interested in this or that phenomenon. I want to know his thoughts; the rest are details.”

    –Albert Einstein

    You keep using quotes from Einstein as if he were a theist. He wasn’t. He makes it very clear here:

    It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it. (Albert Einstein, 1954) From Albert Einstein: The Human Side, edited by Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffman, Princeton University Press


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      GerryD says:

      “You keep using quotes from Einstein as if he were a theist.” What did Einstein really believe? Perhaps he was right when he said a scientist makes a poor philosopher”.
      What did he mean by the following?
      6. “The deeper one penetrates into nature’s secrets, the greater becomes one’s respect for God.” (Einstein, as cited in Brian 1996, 119).
      9. “The more I study science the more I believe in God.” (Einstein, as cited in Holt 1997).
      12. “In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.” (Einstein, as cited in Clark 1973, 400; and Jammer 2002, 97).

      “I’m not an atheist, and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.” [Emphasis added]
      –Albert Einstein, as quoted in Antony Flew’s book, There Is A God: How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind.
      As to the question: “Do you accept the historical Jesus?”
      “Unquestionably! No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life.”
      –Albert Einstein, from an interview with the Saturday Evening Post

      “Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe–a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.”
      –Albert Einstein


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Yes, that is correct. Einstein did not believe in a personal God….but he very definitely DID believe in God.

      Please see my reply to your other Einstein quotes regarding this issue.


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        Myron says:

        But aren’t you using his quotes as evidence for the Christian God?


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          syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

          In his book The Creator and the Cosmos, astrophysicist Hugh Ross writes:

          “…I am also sad that Einstein did not live long enough to see the accumulation of scientific evidence for a personal, caring Creator.”

          You see, Einstein died before the the discoveries regarding the anthropic fine tuning of the universe (which are described in my essay entitled, “Is there a God? (What is the chance our universe is the result of chance?)”

          If you read what astronomers have been writing about anthropic fine tuning, you will find that they make statements that refer to a personal God.

          Hugh Ross continues:

          “Much more is going on, however, than mere talk by astronomers about the design of the cosmos for life support. Words such as somebody fine tuned nature, superintellect, monkeyed, overwhelming design, hand of God, ultimate purpose, God’s mind, exquisite order, very delicate balance, exceedingly ingenious, supernatural agency, supernatural plan, tailor-made, Supreme Being, and providentially crafted obviously apply to a person. Beyond just establishing that the Creator is a person, the findings about design provided some evidence of what that Person is like.”

          “One characteristic that stands out dramatically is His interest in and care for living things, particularly the human race. We see this care in the vastness and quality of the resources devoted to life support.”


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    Fraser says:

    I had read this page hoping to see some case for the existance of God, in the desire to question my own belief as an athiest. However I was dissapointed to say the least. The problem with this page is that there is no real “oomph” to it, I have seen no proof, whatsoever.

    All I have seen is very sly slight of hand, when questionned your responses are never direct, also you seem to have this obsession with quotes, which are far from panaceas in any arguement, You seem to think that just because you quote famous physicists your arguement is valid, for example your first quote is from Albiert Einstein, seemingly to shock and amaze the reader. However Einstien was not omniscient in fact he made several very careless mistakes when it came to his work and much of the stuff he said has now been thouroughly proven wrong, even he admitted it (for reference I am talking about his “cosmological constant”). however you must not think I am calling the man an idiot, far from it, my point is all humans make mistakes, so humans thoughts with out the backing up of evidence are very unreliable.

    Unfortunately for believers of God, statistics cannot be wrong, only misinterpreted, and everything that can be PROVED by the Bible, can be proven with statistics and by physics (for example how humans can into being).

    Like I said at the beginning of my rant (which I apologise for), I am only after the conformation of my belief or if needs be a remodelling, I am not just writing this to insult religious people, in fact I think the for the most part they are very decent people.

    (P.S. Please do not tell me life is a miracle, life was inevitable as all it took was the right molecules to come together in the right place and time (unlikely I know but far from impossible), so if you could please avoid that arquement for times sake that would be much appreciated)


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Go ahead, ask me a question and I will give you a direct answer. Specifically where am I using “sleight of hand?” Exactly where is a place where my response is “not direct”? Please point it out for me so that I can know your accusation is more substantive than merely a dismissive rationalization for facts that are inconvenient to your ideology. It is one thing to declare that I have failed to respond to something directly, and another thing entirely to point out where I have done so.

      No, Einstein was not omniscient. If you think I am obsessed with quotes, this may be because the only post you have read is my “some quotes to consider” post, which is comprised entirely of quotes.

      Please read a couple of other posts such as “Is there a God? (What is the chance our world is the result of chance?)” or “Has anyone met God and returned to tell about it?” or “What it all boils down to?” and get back to me with any rebuttal you may have. Not to throw down the gauntlet or anything, but if you are like most atheist commenters to this site, I will not hear back from you with a logically constructed, fact based, point-by-point rebuttal. I am still waiting for an atheist commenter to this site to come up with something more than mere characterizations of the arguments (“no real oomph”, “sleight of hand”, etc).

      Physics can prove how humans came into being? Please elaborate.

      Life was inevitable? Please elaborate. Scientific American magazine (not exactly a bunch of bible thumpers) states in an article dated October 1996 entitled Confronting Science’s Logical Limits that, “It has been estimated that a supercomputer applying plausible rules for protein folding would need 10 to the 127th power years to find the final folded form for even a very short sequence consisting of just 100 amino acids.” Guess what….the earth is only 4.56 billion years old. Furthermore, it would take random, unintelligent processes a heck of a lot longer to find this “final folded form” than a supercomputer programmed to do so. And protein folding is only the first step for producing life from lifeless compounds.

      Perhaps you should take the route out of this dilemma taken by some prominent atheists. Biologist Richard Dawkins (author of The God Delusion), the late biologist Francis Crick (famous for co-discovering the DNA double helix) and others such as the atheist astronomer Chandra Wickramasinghe have endorsed a hypothesis known as “directed panspermia” which says that the origin of life can be explained by the fact that it was brought here by aliens from outer space. Click here to see Richard Dawkins endorsing the hypothesis in an interview, and click here to read an article which details Crick’s endorsement of the idea.

      If you agree with your fellow atheists, would you please tell me if you have a view as to what planet the aliens came from? I have decided to start compiling stats on which planet atheists think is the best candidate.

      Please forgive me for being blunt (and at times sarcastic). Rather than trying to insult you, I am just trying to prevent you from making the biggest mistake that any human being could ever make (rejecting God). I certainly cannot criticize because I was an agnostic for many years.


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        GerryD says:

        “it would take random, unintelligent processes a heck of a lot longer to find this “final folded form” than a supercomputer programmed to do so. ”
        What the atheist must believe in are random “natural” processes. But scientific methods and super computers rely on the fact that intelligent experimenters can reject one set of parameters as they fail. The next experiment rules out previous flawed results. But mindless processes and chance could come up with the same errors time after time.


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    Derek says:

    You’re misleading people by attributing Einstein quotes to beliefs such as a personal God that Christians believe in. Einstein was not an Atheist, but he definitely did not support the ideas in the Bible. Here’s what he wrote about the Old Testament a year before his death:

    “The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still purely primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this. … For me the Jewish religion like all other religions is an incarnation of the most childish superstition.” – Albert Einstein

    Source: http://www.lettersofnote.com/2009/10/word-god-is-product-of-human-weakness.html


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      No, I am making no such misleading claims. At no point do I make the claim that Einstein believed in a personal God. But he very definitely did believe in God.

      I discuss what science can tell us about God. The pertinent quote comes from New Proofs for the Existence of God by Robert J. Spitzer:

      When we speak of a beginning (a point prior to which there is no physical reality), we stand at the threshold of physics and metaphysics (beyond physics). Even though science cannot be validly used to prove a metaphysical [or “supernatual”] claim (such as, “a Creator or God exists”), it can be used to maintain as highly probable a limit to physical reality (such as a beginning). This scientific evidence for a beginning can be combined with a metaphysical premise (such as “from nothing, only nothing comes”) to render a metaphysical conclusion that there must be something beyond physical reality which caused physical reality to exist (i.e., a transcendent cause).

      So, to summarize, Einstein’s expertise in physics did qualify him to make statements about the “probable limit to physical reality” and therefore the probability of a transcendent cause of physical reality (read: God). Since this is merely an example of a scientist pointing to the limit of physical reality (the boundary separating physics from metaphysics), this does not fall under the category of a scientist embarking in philosophy…which Einstein criticized.

      When it comes to specific attributes of God (personal or non-personal God, etc.), Einstein’s opinions should be taken much more lightly because a physicist (or any other scientist) does not have any particular qualification to speak authoritatively about such subject matter.

      Further, it is a shame that Einstein did not live a few decades longer in order to witness the evidence supporting the concept of “Anthropic Fine Tuning” (which I present in my “Is There A God…” post). The concept of a personal God is much more feasible in light of the evidence which has emerged since Einstein’s death that the universe was created with us in mind.

      Lastly, if people have consciousness and personality, does it not follow that the source from which we originated has consciousness and personality? If ultimate reality is impersonal and blind-mechanical, then why are we not impersonal and blind-mechanical?


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        GerryD says:

        When the likes of Anthony Flew converted to desim/theism it must have been b/c he’s senile (according to the hardened God-deniar). What of Einstein then? I’m not sure when Einstein made these statements but the idea of a creative force, designer or 1st cause was pretty much an idea that taunted him all his life:
        6. “The deeper one penetrates into nature’s secrets, the greater becomes one’s respect for God.” (Einstein, as cited in Brian 1996, 119).
        9. “The more I study science the more I believe in God.” (Einstein, as cited in Holt 1997).
        12. “In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.” (Einstein, as cited in Clark 1973, 400; and Jammer 2002, 97).

        “I’m not an atheist, and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.” [Emphasis added]
        –Albert Einstein, as quoted in Antony Flew’s book, There Is A God: How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind.
        As to the question: “Do you accept the historical Jesus?”
        “Unquestionably! No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life.”
        –Albert Einstein, from an interview with the Saturday Evening Post

        “Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe–a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.”
        –Albert Einstein

        CS Lewis made the observation that an open minded sceptic might be swayed by a good theological argument but what deeply troubles the hardened God-hater/deniar are the eminent academics who reject naturalisitc explanations and/or draw theistic conclusions. So if u really are troubled by quotes from the likes of Einstein, La Maitre, Hoyle, Smoot, Penzias, Maxwell, Plank, Compton, Born, Collins, Dirac, Davies, Heisenberg, Millikan, Townes, Phillips, Bragg, Marconi, Mott, Rabi, Schroedinger, Hewish, Carrel, Penzias, Eccles, Murray and numerous other Nobelists, then maybe there’s a chance they know just a little more than you??


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    James says:

    Here are some atheistic quotes that I hope will act as something of a counterweight to those presented here:

    “Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.”
    – Steven Weinberg, Nobel Prize for Physics winner 1979

    “You can’t convince a believer of anything; for their belief is not based on evidence, it’s based on a deep-seated need to believe.”
    – Carl Sagan

    On the alleged controversy about Einstein’s religion:

    “It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God, and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly.”

    One of my favourites, if just for the dry wit:

    “This story of the redemption will not stand examination. That man should redeem himself from the sin of eating an apple, by committing a murder on Jesus Christ, is the strangest system of religion ever set up.”
    – Thomas Paine


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      I will reply to these quotes one by one:

      To Weinberg: Oops, you forgot that atheist regimes have killed FAR FAR more people than all of the world’s religions combined.

      To Sagan: Oops, Carl, you forgot that you are also a believer. Atheism is a belief. You have a deep-seated need to believe that there is no higher moral authority in power above you.

      Regarding Einstein’s statement: The most important point here is that Einstein’s area of expertise was physics. Because physics is the branch of science which deals with the fundamental nature and underpinnings of reality, a physicist’s comments about the likelihood of a supernatural grounding to our natural world (read: God) should be weighted more heavily than that of the layperson.

      But regarding theological topics which go beyond the supernatural grounding of the natural world (God)—such as discussing the nature or attributes of God—a physicist’s comments should not be given any particular weight. Physics is not equipped to authoritatively comment on the nature or attributes of God (i.e. personal versus impersonal God).

      Therefore, Einstein’s belief in God should be considered significant, but not his belief that God is impersonal and doesn’t concern himself with the affairs of human beings.

      To Thomas Paine: Try responding to Christianity rather than responding to a crude and oversimplified caricature of Christianity that you have created in your head. The Nobel Prize winning physicist Tony Hewish commented: “The ghostly presence of virtual particles defies rational common sense and is nonintuitive for those unacquainted with physics. Religious belief in God, and Christian belief that God became Man around two thousand years ago, may seem strange to common-sense thinking. But when the most elementary physical things behave in this way, we should be prepared to accept that the deepest aspects of our existence go beyond our common-sense intuitions.”


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        James says:

        By definition you cannot be a believer in atheism. Atheism is a non-belief: “I do not believe in no God.” Otherwise all negative beliefs are also beliefs. Hence we are all ‘a-fairy-gardenists’ etc etc.

        Atheism never killed anyone. No one kills in the name of atheism. But don’t reply to this here- I believe I tackled it on the relevant page.

        Don’t get too hung up on the quotes, though, they are just there to be read, as I said. Of course Thomas Paine did not actually disprove Christianity.

        By the way, I have replied on the evil and suffering page and am most interested to see your reply. It is a shame that we have both become rather irate over creationism since I don’t think this site was ever meant to be about that.

        I know I’m right though. :)


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          syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

          No, atheism has never killed anyone. People kill people. And you are probably correct to say that nobody kills in the name of atheism.

          But people who adopt the atheist worldview have killed more people than all the world’s religions combined. As I said before, atheism makes the moral justification of killing much easier. If people are nothing more than survival machines with no transcendent value (because the transcendent doesn’t exist), than what is the problem with killing them off in vast numbers? This is the philosophical underpinning to the the communist and nazi atrocities.

          To disbelieve in one thing necessarily entails believing in something else. For example, to disbelieve that God created life necessarily entails that you believe life originated in some other fashion. Do you accept Dawkins and Crick’s (and other atheists’) hypothesis that life was brought to earth by aliens…despite the fact that it is essentially mathematically impossible for life to have emerged anywhere in the universe from random processes in the time frame since the Big Bang? (See my post entitled “OK, I want numbers” in the snippets section).

          Since you disbelieve that God created the universe, you necessarily believe that it must have originated by some other means. This is especially true since it has been proven that the universe definitely did have a beginning (see my post entitled “Isn’t the universe eternal…thus doing away with the need for a creator?”) What was the cause of the universe? Aliens from another universe?


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            James says:

            Hey, I believe I’ve discussed whether the fact that the universe has a beginning means it has to have a cause. In a very brief summary, I think we only conclude that the universe has to have a beginning because we have a skewed view of causality; we assume that, because everything in the universe has a cause, the universe itself has a cause.

            But every cell (almost) in my body reproduces throug meiosis, but that doesn’t mean I can reproduce through meiosis.

            In short, it’s a logical jump to apply the rules of the specific to the general; see the Russell Copleston debate (1948 I think).

            I cant’t see that Atheism devalues life any more than any religion; after all, a belief in a transcendent being never stopped Genghis Khan, the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, the IRA, Al-Qaeda or anyone else.

            Nazi Germany was only debatably atheist- SS uniforms were adorned with Catholic symbols, and Hitler himself may well have been Catholic.

            But I’d rather steer away from this, since I don’t believe in the ‘body count’ approach. There are just too many factors involved for one to say “this massacre was atheism’s/religion’s fault” conclusively.

            Of course, even if you were right, and atheism did conclusively devalue life, that doesn’t make religion more right, just more desirable.

            I agree though that non-beliefs often entail other beliefs. To be honest I don’t know how life began originally. But one day science will hopefully found out. As ever, I’m also unconvinced by creationist statistics about abiogenesis (having seen guestimates as ludicrous as 1×10 to the power of 1000000 and so forth- clearly invented). I really only wanted to make clear that, where religion is an organised system with scriptures, churches, set beliefs etc, atheism has none of this.


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    jAMES says:

    science is the study of the physical world around us. science will one day solve all mysteries that are to do with SCIENCE. God is not a scientific question since he is not physical or part of this world. The question of God is a 50/50 question. since you cannot prove or disprove God. you either bielieve in him and follow his commands through morals and what not or dont bielieve in God and don’t follow God but follow your ways.


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      In New Proofs for the Existence of God Robert J. Spitzer writes:

      When we speak of a beginning (a point prior to which there is no physical reality), we stand at the threshold of physics and metaphysics (beyond physics). Even though science cannot be validly used to prove a metaphysical [or “supernatual”] claim (such as, “a Creator or God exists”), it can be used to maintain as highly probable a limit to physical reality (such as a beginning). This scientific evidence for a beginning can be combined with a metaphysical premise (such as “from nothing, only nothing comes”) to render a metaphysical conclusion that there must be something beyond physical reality which caused physical reality to exist (i.e., a transcendent cause).

      So you are correct that science alone can neither prove nor disprove God. But science can work in collusion with metaphysical reasoning to render the existence of God as highly probable.


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    danno says:

    A quote to consider:

    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge; it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.” – Charles Darwin


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    Hannibal says:

    Roger: The Koran was not written by Mohamed for the simple reason that he was illiterate. As a Muslim I believe in Judaism and Christianity as well as MANY other faiths or “paths”: Many paths one Truth.


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    Marvin Jones says:

    I did not intend to ask you for a scientic answer to my question.I needed to know the religious and ideological belief when Adam and Eve were created.Could it have been five thousand years ago as one American acadamic believer in creation stated as a fact.


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Marvin:

      If a person believes that God created and Adam and Eve five thousand years ago, that person is a quack….I am in full agreement. This is indisputable. Please remember that only a small minority of biblical literalists (most without much higher education) actually believe this. More commonly, it is believed that this biblical story was intended to be metaphorical in nature. Another interpretation (proposed by MIT physicist Gerald Shroeder) is that “Adam” was the first homo sapien to have self awareness.


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        Hannibal says:

        Do you think the concept of, let’s say, “ice cream” is the same for you as for someone in Zimbabwe (African country. Probably the poorest one in the world)?

        How do you define “time”?

        Do you think God’s consciousness is the same as ours? If I just look around me and realize that each of us has its own perception of things and its own ideas and personality etc… then I look at the other creatures and see that their “level of consciousness” (or awareness) is even more different than ours… (Just as one example: Some creatures don’t see the same colors we see and vice versa)

        Some creatures have a life expectancy of a couple of hours and they perceive that as a “full life cycle”… Do they perceive time the same way we, humans, perceive it?

        Do you think time is universal? (or even “multiversal”)… Do you think God’s time is the same as ours? not totally sure about the Bible but there are several verses in the Koran mentioning the fact that time is inhomogeneous even in a same portion of space-time which means your time is slightly different from mine and the more you’re away from me the more our time perceptions are different…
        (I believe the Koran and the Bible are from the same God)

        All that assuming that there is just one (or a half because we’re going in one direction only: always forward and never backward unlike in the spatial dimensions we’re familiar with) time dimension.

        Imagine if time is multidimensional like space…

        Let’s try not to over simplify things when talking about the creator (by definition and regardless of our believes or “non-believes”) of the mind itself…

        Reading something about “time” in the Koran or the Bible is like reading a novel written by an author who doesn’t live here and therefore speak a different language that I need to understand, investigate and not assume that he means the same thing I think he means :)

        I believe that’s why God created our creative minds and not only holy books.


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          Marvin Jones says:

          Good try.Lets have some simple basic thinking here.You will not like it
          But if the Koran and the Bible were written by a God (again I will repeat myself” A God that cannot make any mistakes,a God that is
          infallible,a God that controls everything” writes books that can be, and are MISINTERPRETED by people that are not capable of getting the SAME message from these scripts.Should these books be allowed to be used by Cretins who find it convenient to kill hundreds of thousands
          just because they believe the word of God in different ways.
          Please save me from the same idiotic excuses about free-will being afforded us corrupted and flawed species.
          You are intitled in believing anything you wish to believe.BUT you are not intitled to ram it down others thoats as if they are facts.They are just beliefs.


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            Roger says:

            The Koran was written by men, namely Mohammed and his followers. Islam considers the book holy because the phophet wrote it. Islam has no concept of the Holy Spirit. It is the Christian belief that God the Holy Spirit wrote the Bible through men, therefore it is written by God and not man in the final anaylsis. Therefore, the Koran and the Bible have different authors. Naturally there are differences in what the two books teach.


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            Hannibal says:

            I totally agree with you Marvin: I don’t think “God writes books” in that sense. That will be something too naive to believe in. The books are some of the “effects” of God. :)
            God is – at least as far as I am concerned – the universal consciousness that runs this universe (its manifestation is what we, humans, call “physical laws”).

            God is not necessarily a book writer nor an entity bounded by space nor time nor languages… God is like infinity or zero or a black hole or dark matter… It is there and I am sure that it is there even if I can’t “see” it. It is affecting everything inside and around me from the smallest quarks to the cosmos itself. It is the designer and the design at the same “time”.

            Regarding the misinterpreted religious books… I call this the piano and the “piano player piano dilemma” and this little story is especially for you:

            ” Vienna, 1808…

            Johann is a really bad piano player who’s convinced that he’s very good and he has a little son named Rudolph.

            For some reason Johann and Rudolph never left their house for the first 10 years of Rudolph’s life. Johann played the piano almost everyday while Rudolph listened and felt tortured by his father’s extremely annoying music.

            He hated piano during all these 10 years to the point where he never even tried touching or playing it by himself. At the age of 10 he was convinced that piano is a bad instrument.

            Somewhat more like an instrument of torture than an instrument of music.

            The same year he started living the house and one day while he was walking in the streets of Vienna with his mother he coincidently heard Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata No. 3 played by Beethoven himself inside his house.

            He stopped and stared at the house speechlessly for a few seconds. He loved the music but couldn’t know what was the instrument causing it… A violin? an accordion? a cello? no… this can’t be any of those. He then asked his mother so she told him that that is a piano… the same instrument his father played for him everyday for 10 years.

            He simply refused to believe her. His mother then decided
            to take him to see with his own eyes the man playing the
            piano… ”

            Morality of this:

            The misinterpretation of the holy books is due to the way we, humans, “play the piano” and not the piano itself. Our understanding is perpetually changing as our “local consciousness” (or awareness) grows. I think that is why we born, live, and die and then born, live, and die again in a different form, etc…

            The purpose of science is seeking truth. The way some of us use it is to create bombs and kill others. Science on itself has a “noble purpose” and nuclear bombs were created by people and through choices and not by nuclear physics itself.

            Symbols I used:

            Johann = Some “religious people”
            Johann’s bad music = “Bad” and illogical interpretations of the holy books.
            The piano = The holy books
            The “good” music = The “universal consciousness” and harmony that binds us (the cosmos and its elements) together or the word of God if you prefer a religious terminology :)
            Moonlight Sonata = an example of “good” music
            Rudolph = Humans in general (or the audience or the observers)
            Beethoven = A “better interpreter” and a clearer translator of the language of the immortal, endless and undivided universal consciousness to the mortals and “always” changing elements. Beethoven can also be considered as a “prophet” or a “messenger” in this context
            Rudolph’s mother = this life


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    Hannibal says:

    How’s the absence of life on other planets proves the absence of a creator? By the way we’re not even sure here.. actually according to the common sense it is way more probable that life exists in other planets than it doesn’t. The Drake equation is a simple yet reasonable proof of that.

    On the other hand if we, humans inside the 4 dimensions of space time and our few senses, can not see life elsewhere then that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist… this is like a bird in cage in a closed room saying that he’s the only bird in the universe…

    Physical theories such as quantum mechanics and string theories show us that even if a different universe is an inch away from us we will not see it… (due to our “dimensionality blindness”).


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      Marvin Jones says:

      This is the difference of the believer and the non-believer.
      The believers see and imagine what is convenient for them to feel safe and comfortable in
      their cocooned fear of questioning anything that may make them even think otherwise.
      For instance.ASSUMING that there is life on other planets before there is a whiff of any proof.
      Until this wishful thinking is proved,do not ASSUME.
      Does anyone have a date or time when this intelligent being actually created anything.
      Was it before or after the dinosaurs.


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        Hannibal says:

        @Marvin: Not sure I understand what you mean by “safe”? How’s that possible knowing that there is a hell? To me it’s quite the other way around (I know this is maybe a little different in my case because I am a Muslim and not a Christian and therefore I don’t expect that Jesus or Mohamed will clean my sins etc… I just “pay” whatever I’ll have to pay)

        To me this God is not the old dude who’s sitting on the clouds just watching for me but God is Justice and the harmony of this universe and the possible multiverse. It is a “universal, continuous function” and not an object within a set of well defined objects that have space-time-consciousness boundaries and limits.

        A believer is someone who believes in Justice and one of the most basics laws of this universe: the cause and effect principle…

        Now let me ask you this: “what do you think, as a “non believer” had happened before the big bang itself?”


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          Marvin Jones says:

          Hannibal
          As a non-believer I do not assume,presume and make up theories to suit my superstitions and myths.Even the Big Bang suggestion is only
          a theory.Scott’s way of proving his points is to quote thoughts and theories of so called super intellects who he seems to regard as right
          just because he agrees with their own theories and superstitions.
          These very people are mere flawed homo-sapiens and are prone to
          being WRONG in their false beliefs in “Because it is ??????????, then there MUST be a god.


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            Hannibal says:

            OK… Do you think zero exist?


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    Marvin Jones says:

    If God created everything, why did he not put life on the other planets? Maybe there were not
    enough days in the week.
    Another thing.If the Bible and the Koran are the words of a God that is INFALLIBLE,should they
    ever ever be able to be mis-interpreted and used for one’s own ideologies?
    Lastly.About Communism and Nazism being responsible for millions of deaths.Religion has
    probably been responsible for zillions.


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      CD says:

      Marvin,

      If life generated spontaneously then why hasn’t it spontaneously generated on other planets?

      Man is not infallible by His design, therefore it is completely within reason that His word would either be mis-interpretted, or more likely deliberately mis-repressented for one’s own ideologies. I think God even gave us a commandment against such a practice. “Thou shalt not take the Lord’s name in vain”.

      Religion is responsible for zero deaths. Those killed in the name of God were killed by men, not religion.

      Thanks,

      CD


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        Dashan says:

        why is it the atheist is quick to admit to alien intelligence but rejects a supernatural intelligence? Could we use the same arguments to deny alien existence as we use for God & then say aliens most certainly dont exist e.g
        Some assertions of the New Atheists substituting alien for God:
        1.”There is absolutely no evidence for aliens
        2.Science must destroy the belief inUFO clubs & alien existence
        3. Everyone is born an a-alien or disbeliever
        4.There are too many aliens to believe in one.
        5. I just believe in one less alien than you.
        6. Athiesm is intellectually based, alien belief is faith based.
        7. Science will eventually explain everything including ultimate reality. Beliefs like alien abductions & space travel are dangerous.
        8. Aliens are about as likely as unicorns or fairies
        9. The alien story has been interpretated & copied so many times into folklore it’s most probably a myth.
        Observations: Although alien existence is possible most of us have little interest because it doesnt in any way explain the ultimate questions of life. We certainly dont write books like “The Alien Delusion” or “Aliens arent Great” The reason why the God question dominates all of human history is because there is truth to it & its profound implications for our origin, purpose & destiny.
        My questions for the skeptic are “arent we all just agnostic to alien existence 2)why would u deny God outright when there is at least compelling evidence as shown on this website to suggest otherwise? 3)Given your limited knowledge of the universe can u claim to know God or aliens dont exist? 4)Isnt it then illogical to claim to be an atheist rather than an agnostic?


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          Myron says:

          The statement “why is it the atheist is quick to admit to alien intelligence but rejects a supernatural intelligence?” is false. How have atheists in any way been quick to reject supernatural intelligence? The very fact that we are debating this topic is enough evidence to prove that we still are debating the topic.

          Also can you claim you know God?


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            syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

            If you are an atheist who believes in supernatural intelligence, I have to say that is a new one for me! Unless I have missed something, atheism implies a rejection of the supernatural altogether… not just supernatural intelligence.


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          nick says:

          It keeps being hurled at atheists that they claim that aliens began life. They make no such concrete claims. They merely make postulations. It is possible that the conception of Earthly Life transpired via directed panspermia, yet little or no knowledge is currently held as to the exact origins of Life on Earth.

          Directed panspermia would seem unlikely to me, but possible yet the prevailing theory in science would probably be some form of abiogenesis, would it not? So surely, it is just as illogical for attackers such as yourself to tarr atheists with this brush of ironic derision for considering a slightly less mainstream theory for a mystery that rates among the greatest known to man. I am an agnostic by the way and share some of your conclusions, however perhaps not the agression in your arguments.

          As a chemist and it would seem, a fairly articulate one, do you have any opinions or knowledge on the origins of life? We have been discussing this issue on various pages of this website and it would seem to be a wide and gripping topic. Would you have any understanding to share? (There is a section under snippets regarding this issue)
          gratias tibi.


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            nick says:

            I agree with some of what you say here. I know we have been over this before. I also agree that panspermia does certainly not solve the issue of how life developed initially. I recall that we both agreed that, ‘it only kicks the can further down the road’.

            I was only trying to defend a slightly too critical attack on the atheists, because whilst they do consider and ponder over this, they do not use it as an all encompassing explanation. I said, that I would accept your criticisms and I do, but you must stop short of saying that they use this as final fact (and I think that you have just said you do).

            In the Ben Stein interview with Dawkins, when asked on how life begun, Dawkins replied, ‘I don’t know. Nobody does.’ He was not claiming that panspermia is the finite answer.

            That was my criticism really. I would also agree with you about some of the philosophical steps that Dawkins takes. I do not adhere to everything he says.


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              I think we are on the same page with regard to this issue. Please do not take anything I say as a suggestion that atheists view “directed panspermia” as anything more than a hypothesis.


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            nick says:

            just briefly in response to: syoungren says: February 15, 2011 at 6:11 pm

            Your first paragraph makes sense. The first sentence of your second paragraph completely contradicts the statements you make in the first.

            Atheists do not state that they have solved the riddle of the origin of life. Again, they are making a postulation. If you wish to ridicule the postulation, then this would be acceptable in debate. However, you cannot claim in your critique that they claim to have solved the riddle of existence, because they do not (generally). Some probably do, but the figure heads that you will draw from on this site will claim no such stance. They will give hearings to postulations and may even propose them as likely, but will not claim them as truth or fact.

            My criticism is simply, that you may continue to ridicule the postulation if you wish, but you must not say that atheists consider this to be the actual solution.

            I would agree to an extent with your sentiments and would also be skeptical about directed panspermia, so can understand your criticism.

            You do go on to say that it is rediculous. However, to this I will say two things.

            Firstly, in the vastness of space and time, it is perfectly possible that life exists or has existed on another planet in another solar system or galaxy. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11444022 This link demonstrates how another planet may support life in the universe. The shear numbers of planets make it statistically reasonable to ‘consider’ extra terrestrial life.

            Secondly, the aliens do not neccessarily have to have come to Earth in directed panspermia. Alien life could have been blown from it’s home planet by a collision and sent off in to the universe on a nomadic meteor (‘undirected’ I hear you say). However, directed panspermia could also be the sending of life outwards from its home planet in modules, satelites or on rocks into the universe without the alien species having to leave the ground. They could have sent samples of life in all directions simply to explore or perhaps to spread life (or even by accident). In fact, this is something that we may have unwittingly already done ourselves. (read:voyager) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voyager_1

            What if there are some human cells in some of the equipment on voyager, or some biological materials in the machinery? How difficult would it be to send out a similar space craft full of extremophiles and random biology that may be able to last well in the expanses of space?

            Directed Panspermia, maybe not as implausible as it first sounds?


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Nick,

              Perhaps my statement that “atheists claim to have solved the origin of life” does not accurately enough convey what I was trying to say. My point would have been better communicated if I had said that atheists such as Dawkins put on a pretense of having a more scientific explanation for the origin of life, but when you look deeper (not much deeper), you quickly find that their explanations are anything but scientific. Rather, they are constructed of wierd, quasi-religious speculations.

              I do not dispute the possibility of extra-terrestrial life. It seems likely to me that an infinite God would create infinitely. That, however, is a different subject matter all together.

              We have been over this “directed panspermia” thing before. Ultimately, whether or not directed panspermia is possible or not is irrelevant. This is because even if it could be proven, we would still be left with the question of how alien life emerged randomly. Please recall the following analysis made by Oxford University mathematician Roger Penrose which appears in my “OK, I want numbers” snippet regarding the odds of the random generation of life (anywhere in the universe) since the time of the Big Bang’s inception.

              Please also recall what physicists, information theorists and mathematicians say about the possibility of the random occurence of life in my “Can life evolve from lifeless chemicals” snippet. Note that this would apply to life emerging randomly anywhere in the universe, not just on Earth.

              These facts make it apparent that “directed panspermia” is a device used by atheist biologists to sweep the question of the origin of life under the rug because it cannot be answered by naturalistic means. It allows them to avoid answering the inconvenient question of how life could have emerged through random processes by creating a diversion.

              I would encourage you to explore this subject matter more deeply by checking out this forum.


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            syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

            Nick:

            I will reply for Dashan, and he can add to what I say if he wants:

            Well of course atheists do not make “concrete claims” that aliens brought life to earth. To do so, they would need to produce some evidence of alien life, and nobody has yet done that. The main point of calling attention to the endorsement by some atheists of “directed panspermia” is not to argue that they are wierd Star Trek fans or something of that sort.

            Rather, it is to demonstrate that the atheist stance that science has solved the riddle of life is a ridiculous scientific pretension. Atheists do not have even the FIRST CLUE as to how life came into existence, just baseless hypotheses which have gotten ever more ridiculous. Suggesting that life was brought to earth by aliens from outer space without any explanation as to how alien life emerged from random processes renders speaks volumes about the logical basis for atheism. Specifically, it demonstates that the atheist claim of being guardians-of-scientific-rationality-against-the-superstition-of-theists is baseless.

            Further, the fact that atheism clings to materialism/naturalism (and must for its survival) despite the fact that this view has been utterly discredited by modern physics demonstrates that it is atheists who are superstitious. Please review the article entitled “The Materialist Superstition” for further clarification.

            The idea that life was created by a higher intelligence is bolstered by the fact that modern physics supports the idea that mind preceded matter, as I demonstrate in my God Is Real…Why modern physics has discredited atheism post.


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      No sir, communism and nazism (the two most anti-religious ideologies) are responsible for FAR FAR more deaths than all of the world’s religions combined. Just google “How many people did communism kill” and you will find that estimates run as high as 100 million…and that doesn’t even include nazism. Show me historical evidence that the world’s religions are responsible for anywhere near this many. Please provide references so we all can cross check.

      Here is my reference for the 100 million figure: Death by Government by R.J. Rummel

      We don’t know if there is life on other planets. The bible teaches that human nature is evil. So, yes, that would allow for deliberate misinterpretation of scripture.


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    Hannibal says:

    2 thumbs up from a Muslim.


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    Janice says:

    This site is truly amazing. I have multiple friends who are athesists and throughout the years my faith has been shaken. My friends have told me that if i could find one piece of evidence that god existed or one famouse person who has made a statement on god that has any meaning and they would go to church with me and talk to the preacher with me about god. even though I am 14, I have changed so many peoples lives through this site and am going to be a preacher after highschool. Who ever made this website I owe this all to you. Thank you so very much for helping me help others and myself. I highly thank you. Along with my many friends that can now see the truth about god and who he really is. Even though they still have questions, they aren’t just jumping to the conclusion that god is not real. Now they are looking for answers on their own. Even though this thank you letter (note thing) is not very well written I thank you so much. My faith is no longer shaken, along with many other people.
    We all thank you,
    J & Friends


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      GerryD says:

      The problem with teens & young people is that they are being talked out of belief in God b/c they have never been talked into it. Sadly, 43% of them are living in a home without their biological father. In studies on the psychology of atheism it has been shown that many famous atheists have had estranged or non-existent father/child relationships such as Satre, Nietzche, Russell Freud etc
      A quote By CS Lewis is very relevant here. He said that an openminded skeptic may be briefly swayed by a good book on theology but what will deeply trouble the hardened God-deniar is the conclusions of eminent academics who reject naturalism and/or atheism.
      All atheists are materialistic reductionalists because they must hold to a naturalistic (materialistic) worldview: “everything can be explained by matter & energy.” This is an act of faith which denys that there can be anything unknown to science. So how does naturalism explain why the universe exists, why it is rationally intelligible (obeys abstract laws), why laws are defined by absurdly complex math’ formulae. CS Lewis also asks “if it (universe) is meaningless, how could anything in it, arise to claim it has no meaning?


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      Janice, you are very welcome. I am very touched to hear your story. And I thank you for sharing this site with your friends. Please continue to do so.

      I asked God to speak to people through me when I was preparing the essays for this website. There is little doubt in my mind that this is what he did. It was truly amazing how easily the words came to me and how easily I located the necessary quotes.

      Scott Youngren
      Chicago, Illinois


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        Dashan says:

        Can I just say from my experience of debating atheists on youtube, 1) no amount of informed argument & compelling evidence will convince a sceptic who has closed his heart & mind to the very possibility of God. 2) As a scientist (chemistry & biochemistry majors) I was convinced of the presence of God in my life long before I studied science.
        I often get the “Sky daddy” or flying spaghetti monster thrown at me which are only strawman. There is no more compelling issue than the existence of a personal God, one that has dominated all of known human history. The God question reveals an intrinsic need (that sets humanity apart from all other creation) to connect to ultimate meaning and to the transcendent & to ask WHY? It is not merely the result of socio-biological conditioning, but is instead, an intrinsic aspect of the human experience.
        pax vobiscum


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    Sherie Depew says:

    Atheism a marvel of the world. Opposing god, is a good way to live.


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      Philip Maguire says:

      Absolutely it is, if you want to be enslaved by evil.


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      howay says:

      Naturally these lies were written by christians to support their propaganda & repeated here. Here is what Einstein really said: “I received your letter of June 10th. I have never talked to a Jesuit priest in my life and I am astonished by the audacity to tell such lies about me. From the viewpoint of a Jesuit priest I am, of course, and have always been an atheist.” -Albert Einstein
      Letter to Guy H. Raner Jr. (2 July 1945), responding to a rumor that a Jesuit priest had caused Einstein to convert to Christianity, quoted in an article by Michael R. Gilmore in Skeptic magazine, Vol. 5, No. 2, (1997)


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        Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

        Howay,

        Einstein was not a Christian, but he was VERY EXPLICIT about not being an atheist.

        Towards the end of his life, he adopted a belief in God called “deism,” which says that God exists, but that he is not a personal God.

        I recommend a post titled Einstein’s Error (click here) which explains why Einstein failed to accept the concept of a PERSONAL God, despite the fact that he believed in God.

        Please note the context of the quote which you have provided. Einstein says he is an atheist “from the viewpoint of a Jesuit priest.” By this, he presumably means that he does not adopt a Jesuit priest’s concept of God.

        Again, Einstein was VERY EXPLICIT about renouncing atheism. Below are some of Einstein’s comments regarding God:

        “I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with fates and actions of human beings.”

        “In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.”

        “I’m not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangements of the books, but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.”

        If you are suggesting that Einstein was an atheist, then you are just plain wrong. Open and shut.

        Scott


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      CD says:

      Sherie,

      I think you may be confusing “good” with “selfish”.

      How can one “oppose” something they contend doesn’t exist?

      Thanks,

      CD


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        syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

        The nazis and communists killed so many people because they had a worldview which said that human beings are souless and have no transcendent value (because atheism denies that there is a transcendent). When human beings are nothing more than glorified cattle (“survival machines” in the words or Dawkins), it is much easier to send them to the slaughter like cattle. This is what the nazis did in their death camps and the communists in their gulags. The nazis were very anti-religious but not officially atheist (as were the communists). But their view of the value of the human being was heavily influenced by atheist thought. This point is discussed in From Darwin to Hitler by R.J. Rummel (a professor of modern european history).


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          James says:

          This seems like a serious misunderstanding. Regardless of ‘body counts’ over atheism and religion, it seems to me impossible to say what you have said. Hitler and Stalin did not do what they did because they were atheists. Hitler, as a matter of fact, may have been Catholic; certainly the state sponsored Catholic, since SS uniforms have numerous Catholic symbols on them.

          Regardless, the point is that nobody was killed for the sake of atheism. Stalin was not executing people and setting up the Gulag to promote atheism.

          On the other hand, millions have died in the name of religion. Catholics kill protestants and vice versa, Christians kill Jews, Muslims kill Jews, and now Jews are killing Muslims again. Religion has created an endlessly perpetuating cycle of hatred between these groups. Atheism is unprejudiced and thus does not promote this hatred.

          And Danno is right – I, like all atheists, do place value on human life.


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            nick says:

            I’m not saying that religion is bad, nor was I singling out Christianity. I don’t particularly like this area of discussion. I was just saying that the statement, ‘Millions have died in the name of religion. WRONG! Urban legend, nothing more. Please provide a scholarly citation for this. Hint: You can’t.’ is false. It’s a two sided issue, but whilst religion has often been a source for great good, it has been the resulted in much conflict also.


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            nick says:

            My beliefs are undefined at the moment. That was why I initially enquired on this site. As a result of the discussion I have learnt much and have encountered some new things that I had not encountered before. This is to your credit, as there are things on this site that I feel are both legitimate and challenging.

            I was more atheistic in recent years than I have been recently and this is a difficult topic, but I would probably have to class myself as an agnostic these days, as I have said before. However, I have always allowed for the possibility of God and believe that I could consider Deism to some extent as a possibility. This may be a progression further from agnosticism and is partially as a result of some of the discussion on this site, although I am just unsure what exactly I think.

            I do not seek to justify my beliefs or desires through searching for evidence to support them, I do the opposite. I search for evidence and try to work out from the evidence what I feel is true. I came to my conclusions rather painfully, as a result of the evidence that I began to find, rather than choosing to be secular because I fancied the lifestyle and then trying to justify it.

            I have said previously that religion truely can be a force for good. I am not attempting to accuse Christianity of things that are untrue or unreasonable in order to justify my beliefs.

            You have made very sweeping statements about how little killing Christianity and religion do. Their fundamental doctrines are against war and killing and on this you are correct.

            However, they have been wielded in war and killing as long as they have existed and painful or not, this is something that you must accept. I am not trying to fabricate this. You have said on previous pages how people may have religious experiences and encounters with God and Jesus. This is exactly what Xiaquan had and this was instrumental in his conversion, just as the conversion of Saul on the road to Damascus. He believed in Christianity and God and preached these as a message for good. Hong and all his followers were baptized as Christians and he genuinely wanted to do God’s will.

            You have a valid point about the UN, but at what point do you draw the line? All 2 million of his rebbellion followers fought under and for the message of God. This is an awful lot of people. Had it not been for the evangilisation that Xiaquan had begun, then perhaps the movement would never have gained so much momentum. Hong and his followers were baptized,yet even if you wish to claim that they were not true Christians, they fought in the name of God, which would make them religious. This shows the power and influence that the commands (or supposed commands) of the almighty, or a greater supernatural power can have.

            You make a valid point about, ‘Thou shalt not Kill’, but if this is the case then any death ever caused was never caused by Christians as they were not true Christians. Durston states in his article that the Crusades, the witch hunts and the Spanish inquisition could all be attributed to Christianity. Yet if your argument about, ‘Thou shalt not Kill’ is true then none of these events can be linked to Christianity because they are in breach of that command. Killing, however unChrisitian and in breach of Christian doctrine, and of all other religion included as well, has occurred in its name, since it began.


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Let me just summarize my views with regard to the link between religion and killing so that I can be fully clear.

              Ultimately, a religion or philosophical belief system must be judged by the precepts established by its founder(s)…not by the success or failure of its followers in adhering to those precepts.

              So when a person kills in the name of a religion that clearly teaches “thou shalt not kill,” it is hard to argue that it was the religion that caused that person to kill. Christianity not only teaches that killing is wrong, but it also teaches that tribalism (or hating people who do not belong to one’s cultural or religious group) is wrong. Recall the biblical story of the good Samaritan.

              So when a Christian kills someone because they are not a Christian, they have violated the Christian prohibition against (1) killing and (2) tribalism.

              Therefore, when a Christian kills in the name of Christianity, how can it be argued that it was Christianity that caused them to kill? How can it be argued that if it weren’t for Christianity, there would be less killing?

              Remember that people will always find ways to organize into tribal/cultural groups that try to dominate other tribal/cultural groups. It should be of no surprise that the world’s largest religion is sometimes used as means to organize in such a way. Take away the world’s largest religion, and people will find some other way to organize and try to dominate as such.

              In order to argue that Christianity caused killing, you must establish some sort of causal link between the religious precepts themselves and the motivation to kill. Otherwise there is no reason to believe that it was the religious precepts themselves that motivated or facilitated killing rather than the natural human tendency to become organized into tribal/cultural groups coupled with the natural human tendency to try to dominate other tribal/cultural groups.

              With the case of Xiaquan, not only did he violate the two above mentioned Christian precepts, but he also showed clear signs of being deranged (saying he was the younger brother of Jesus despite the fact that this is impossible). He also tried to set up a heaven-on-earth which is at odds with Jesus saying that “my kingdom is not of this world.” And the article that you cited clearly states that the primary cause of the conflict was widespread discontentment with the rulers in power….not religious disagreements.

              So my question is this: What do you feel is the causal link between Christian beliefs and killing in general or in the case of Xiaquan? WIthout a causal link, there is no reason to judge that it is the religious beliefs themselves that are at fault.

              Regarding atheism, I have established the causal link between killing and the severely degraded concept of human dignity that atheism entails.


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            nick says:

            At least you agree about Jihad. Your snippet about religion in that case does not engage in the wider issues of all religions killings past and present.

            Throughout the millennia, how many battles between faiths of all different kinds have been fought in their name? Without historical records, how many inter-tribal battles in prehistoric societies would have taken place in the name of the reigning religious ideology? I know that in stone age Britain, conflict was a reality between competing tribes. It was a land of myth, mystery and cultural beliefs in deity’s of the land and forests. Stone and wood circles are testament to these ancient religions with Stonehenge of Wiltshere England being the most famous of these. I know that men and women were sacrificed in the name of these reigning belief systems, which were things such as Druidism and Paganism, on alters and stakes. I would have little doubt that conflicts also were heavily influenced by these cultural attitudes, with many being killed in their name. This would be one example of ancient historical religious killing, that would accumulate to immense numbers of casualties over the centuries and in different regions around the world.

            There are countless examples of death being caused in the name of and because of religion, with death tolls well in to the millions and further.

            ‘Millions have died in the name of religion. WRONG! Urban legend, nothing more. Please provide a scholarly citation for this. Hint: You can’t.’

            This phrase is still hugely incorrect and your agreement about Jihad goes some way to establishing that.

            ‘The 240,000 figure was regarding Christianity, not all religions.’

            This figure regarding Christianity, again is hugely below, even conservative, estimates. I also believe that the figure from Durston was 264,000.

            With regards to a death toll from Christianity I’m not sure where to start, nor that it’s a particularly nice line of argument, but 264,000 is delusionally short of reality. He has not factored in to this the problem of AID’s in Africa, which is probably one of the most prominant issues in the modern world of religious related killing.

            The Taiping Rebellion, as I said was the compillation of a number of varying factors including largely political desires for regime change.

            However, to discount the Christian element as a factor would be folly, given that the ideal that they fought for was The Heavenly Kingdom of Peace. He lead an army called, ‘The Taiping Heavenly Army’ estimated to be 2 million in size.

            Read around that site that I provided. There are countless pages describing the deep routed Christianity that was an essential element in this civil war. Try this quote:

            ‘The Christian doctrine of human depravity lies at the foundation of the religious belief of the insurgents. They acknowledge that they have sinned against the great God, and they hope to be forgiven on repenting of their misdeeds, and obeying the orders of the Taiping-wang dynasty. Those who fall in battle are promised, by the chiefs, a direct translation into a heaven of ever-during felicity ; while those who fly from the enemy, or transgress the commands of their superiors, will be doomed to the pains of an eternal hell.’

            Christianity was one of the galvanising elements of this civil war and was the reason that Hong Xiuquan was able to ammass such a force. He began ammassing Christian faithfull around him that slowly but surely accumulated from close family and friends to an army capable of rebbellion.

            ‘While the religious enthusiasm of Xiuquan mounted so high that, like the Apostle Peter, he demanded a sword, the amount of cash in his pockets was daily running lower and lower.’

            He was an evangelist and a revolutionary.

            He believed he was the son of Christ, because he had met God in religious experiences and had walked with God and the angels and spoken with Jesus.

            ‘As a symbolic gesture of purging China of Confucianism, he asked for two giant swords, three-chi (about one metre) long and nine-jin (about 5.5 kg), called the “demon-slaying swords” (斬妖劍), to be forged.’

            He wanted to rid China of the reigning Confucian paradigm and install the good of Christianity.

            In 1844, Hong and his follower Feng Yun-shan founded the ‘God Worshippers Society’ (Pai Shang-ti Hui) in Guangxi.

            This war began for various reasons as you have said yourself, but this was also a war ‘heavily’ influenced by Christianity and the spreading of its message. The Heavenly Army was galvanised under its desire to do God’s work. It was not just the belief of Xiuquan (if he was crazy or not) that he fought for God, but the belief of his entire force.

            This is one example of the figure being more than Durston’s 264,000. Even if only a small percentage of those 20 million Chinese killed were directly related to Christianity, his article is shown to be extremely poorly researched.


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Nick,

              You are ignoring my most fundamental point over and over again. A person who kills in the name of a religion that states “thou shalt not kill” is clearly perverting that religion. But atheism requires no such perversion to result in killing.

              You characterize Christianity as “one of the galvanizing elements” of this conflict. But a person who believes himself to be the younger brother of Jesus (even though Jesus lived almost 2000 years earlier) entrusted with establishing a heavenly kingdom on earth is a madman, not a Christian. Jesus clearly said, “my kingdom is not of this world.” You have given absolutely no attention to whether or not Xiuquan was practicing actual Christianity.

              If some deranged person and his followers went on a killing spree claiming to represent the United Nations, would that be evidence that the United Nations is a bloodthirsty organization? Nick, your argument is beyond ridiculous. It is profoundly ridiculous.

              You appear to be trying really hard to find some accusations against Christianity that can stick so that you can rationalize your decision to adopt secular beliefs.


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            nick says:

            ‘Millions have died in the name of religion. WRONG! Urban legend, nothing more. Please provide a scholarly citation for this. Hint: You can’t.’

            Scott whilst I appreciate that you are trying to defend religion on this topic, James is right to assert that millions have died because of religion.

            I think you are just in trying to defend religion, as it can give much good to the world, but you must also be honest about the situation. If religion cannot admit to its mistakes and weaknesses then it will not be a force for good going forward and it could do so much good.

            I recall in one of your articles or posts that you calculated a mere 240,000 deaths to the activities of Christianity and religion. I believe this was the figure you asserted from an article by Kirk Durston. However, the figure you arrived at is so far from the mark upon this issue of religion and death, it is unjust.

            You wrote a snippet entitled ‘Doesn’t religion cause killing?’ and refer to this snippet in your reply to James.

            Religion encompasses all the faiths that are, and have been on Planet Earth. To name a few; Judaism, Sikhism, Hinduism, Greek Mythology, Shinto, Paganism, Islam and Christianity. Since man began to walk and build tools it is possible and indeed most probable, that religions have existed and caused killing in their name.

            With these ancient societies asside and with regards only to more recent religious relation to death, the problem is just as prevelant.

            This is a word that has been completely ommited from your considerations: Jihad. This literally means a millitary struggle on behalf of Islam (that can also refer to the internal struggle of individual muslims with the teachings of Islam). This is a controversial term that Muslim scholars do not like brandished as literal holy war or justification for holy war. However, it is a term that represents something that is propogated on the world via Islamic radicals as a matter of course in our modern era. Of course it is only the extreme radical proponents of Islam that brandish this as a cause for war, not the vast majority of good muslims, but it happens nonetheless and the deaths that result are no less real. How many people have fallen over the centuries because of Jihad? I’m sure that the numbers here alone would raise the figure that you calculated.

            There are so many examples on this issue connected with religion and death and I would remind you of the massive deaths that can occur as a consequence of non violent ideological reasons, such as the AID’s tragedy in Africa. However, I will list just one single and horrific example here that may make you reconsider the statements that you have previously made about numbers from Kirk Durston: the events of the Taiping Rebellion.

            The Taiping Rebellion was one of the bloodiest invlovements that Christianity has ever found itself in. The more widely known Crusades pale in comparison to the death toll of this Religiously motivated war.

            Hong Xiuquan believed he was the younger brother of Jesus Christ. He was a Christian and his ambition of reform and evangelising the message of Christianity was a major catalyst and factor in the Taiping Rebellion. He believed he was chosen by God and his aim was to establish a heavenly kingdom (Tai Ping Tian Guo) upon earth and replace the corrupt Manchu Qing dynasty.

            As a result of the conflict, the death toll estimates range from 20 to 100 million dead in China due to the slaughter and wider consequences, such as famine. This happened between the years of 1850 and 1864. I wonder why Kirk Durston failed to mention this?

            The numbers here may not all be attributable to religion and indeed a number of factors lead to the initiation of this conflict. But one of the main initial and attributing catalysts for this civil war was the evangelisation of Christianity by a Christian, who believed he was acting for God seeking to spread the message and the followers who fought for him and for this message. The Heavenly Kingdom of Peace.

            A small website link about the Taiping Rebellion.
            http://www.taipingrebellion.com/


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              syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Nick:

              I went to the link you provided and here is what I found (copy and paste):

              “The Taiping Rebellion arose from the general discontent of the Chinese population against their Manchu conquerors, who were seen as corrupt and ineffective against the ‘foreign devils’ and the opium they imported into China and the growth of lawlessness and secret societies in the countryside. Foreign contact also added a new catalyst, an alien religion, Christianity.”

              Nick, the war was about “the general discontent of the Chinese population against their Manchu conquerors.” Christianity was a peripheral element in this conflict. To use this is as an example of religion causing death is a huge overreach. Further, a person who believes himself to be the younger brother of Jesus, even though Jesus lived almost 2000 years earlier, is clearly a madman.

              And as I said before: Using a religion that teaches “thou shalt not kill” to justify killing is clearly a perversion of that religion. No such perversion is necessary in the case of atheism, which teaches that people are “survival machines” with no transcendent value….because the transcendent does not exist.

              The 240,000 figure was regarding Christianity, not all religions.

              As far as Jihad is concerned, I agree with you. But if you could wave a magic wand and cause all the jihadists to change religious views, would you change them into atheists? History clearly demonstrates that this would not be a good idea.


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            syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

            What one kills “in the name of” or “for the sake of” is far less relevant than the philosophical factors that facilitate or motivate killing.

            Hitler said:

            “The law of selection justifies this incessant struggle, by allowing for the survival of the fittest. Christianity is a rebellion against natural law, a protest against nature. Taken to its logical extreme, Christianity would mean the systematic cultivation of the human failure.”

            Hitler also said:

            “The stronger asserts his will, it’s the law of nature. The world doesn’t change; its laws are eternal.”

            Hitler may have been Catholic? Please provide a scholarly citation to back up this assertion. It is groundless.

            SS uniforms have numerous Catholic symbols on them? Provide a scholarly citation for this groundless assertion. By the way, even if you could, it would mean nothing. Ozzy Osbourne has all sorts of Christian symbols (like a huge crucifix) on his strange outfit. Does this make him a Christian?

            Millions have died in the name of religion. WRONG! Urban legend, nothing more. Please provide a scholarly citation for this. Hint: You can’t.

            Atheism is unprejudiced?! So you don’t think Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, or Daniel Dennett have any prejudice against theists?

            Please read my post entitled “Doesn’t Religion Cause Killing” and get back to me with a retort. It doesn’t seem that you have read it because you don’t reply to the points that it makes.

            You and Danno place a value on human life? I don’t doubt it. Congratulations for accepting this aspect of Judeo-Chrisitian morality.


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          danno says:

          Atheists DO place value on human life, as many do on all other life. Any atheists out there disagree? Anyone?

          Atheism HAS NOT resulted in the severe devaluation of human life. Your 100 million is relative to communism, not atheism. No references to atheism when researching communism, except on Christian websites. No references on communism websites to… “Communism is a political system that officially embraces the atheist worldview.” Pure nonsense. Nazis killed in the name of Arian racism, not atheism.

          The following article is a “must read,” as it destroys the concept of state-sponsored atheism or killing in the name of atheism:

          http://atheism.about.com/od/isatheismdangerous/a/AtheismKilled.htm


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            kobuskanneman says:

            It is logically not possible to say what atheists value or not: the very word “atheism” just states the absence of something. It doesn’t and cannot prescribe what should be present – except belief in God!


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              Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Kobuskanneman,

              Why do you suppose it is that atheists prescribe that anything is acceptable “except belief in God” (as you put it)?

              It is because atheists VALUE freedom from having to answer to a higher power for their deeds and words. In other words, atheists VALUE being the kings (or queens) of their own castles.

              Atheism is basically motivated by moral escapism.

              Scott


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            GerryD says:

            “Atheism HAS NOT resulted in the severe devaluation of human life.” PURE NONSENSE.
            The world is financially, morally & spiritually bankrupt because of the male ego’s lust for power & position. We all know that God’s morality is written on our hearts but many refuse to listen to the inner voice of conscience.
            Lenin said “Atheism is a necessary component of our program.” And we know what happened to most of the churches & clergy who thought otherwise.
            Nazism killed in the name of Neo-darwinianism- the old, the weak, the infirmed, the genetically impure should persist so that the fittest may survive.


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            syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

            You cannot “destroy” the concept of state-sponsored atheism any more than you can destroy the concepts of the American Civil War or the fall of the Soviet Union. These are historical facts, open and shut. Here is a link to the wikipedia post about state atheism.

            I am not suggesting that all atheists think that human life is worthless or that being an atheist makes you a killer. What I am suggesting is that atheist philosophy was a crucial component of the most prolific killing sprees (communist and nazi) in all of human history.

            This can be seen in the comments made by the most important communist revolutionary of all, Vladimir Lenin. In 1920, he said:

            “We repudiate all morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas that are outside class conceptions. Morality is entirely subordinate to the interests of class war. Everything is moral that is necessary for the annihilation of the old exploiting social order and for uniting the proletariat.”

            For the most bloodstained political system in all of human history to set out on its killing spree, it turned to atheist concepts of human nature in order to “repudiate all morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas.” The repudiaton of the supernatural is atheist through and through.

            What specific “morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas” am I referring to? The Judeo/Christian concept of the sanctity of human life.

            Once again, your article about atheists not killing “in the name of atheism” is irrelevant because nobody has ever suggested that atheists have killed in the name of atheism.

            Also, I have mentioned the nazis and communists, but there is a third example of an atheist philosophy being involved in an historic killing spree (mentioned in the above wikipedia post): The French Revolution.

            I have deleted the duplicate copies of your comment. In the future, please just post a comment once, not on multiple locations on the website.


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              danno says:

              The sacredness of human life is not unique to Judeo/Christian concepts, or any other religion. Doing onto others as you’d have them do onto you is a universal concept, being entirely advantageous to self- and community-preservation, and yes, procreation. Being an atheist does not justify killing people over “class wars.” Being an atheist does not mean you are anti-religious, it does not in any way involve a devaluation of human life (to which a belief or disbelief in transcendence is completely irrelevant), it’s simply a disbelief in god or religious followings, and is in NO WAY demoralizing. “Adopting a much more devalued concept of human life” involves racial, ethnicity, and/or class discrimination and hatred, for example. How do you explain the Spanish Conquest of the Americas, the motivation being the spread of the Christian faith, resulting in approximately 15 million dead?


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      syoungren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

      If you listen to the cries of history, it is definitely not a good way to live. Communism and nazism are the two major political systems to have adopted state-sponsored atheism. The commonly accepted figure for the number of deaths caused by communism is over 100 million (just google “How many people did communism kill?”). As far as nazism is concerned…Do I even need to go there?


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        Jim Chase says:

        If you listen to the cries of history, it is definitely not a good way to live. Communism and nazism are the two major political systems to have adopted state-sponsored atheism.

        Answer: Dear religatard, Nazism is a Christian based and style of government and was completely anti secular and communism and socialism are also VERY religious institutions….so pull your head out of Jesus’s ass and quit burning books!

        The commonly accepted figure for the number of deaths caused by communism is over 100 million (just google “How many people did communism kill?”).

        Answer: Yes, religion is a disease, get well soon!

        As far as nazism is concerned…Do I even need to go there?

        Answer: Perhaps you should would at getting your high school equivalent and leave the Sunday school circle jerk lesson for church. No really!


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          Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

          Jim,

          Again, the use of angry rhetoric (“regilatard”, etc.) is a “tell” that you are angry because you realize that your argument has fallen apart…much as a nervous tick made by a poker player is a “tell” that he is holding a weak hand, and is bluffing.

          No, Nazism is not a Christian based institution. Hitler hated Christianity. He once said:

          “The law of selection justifies this incessant struggle, by allowing for the survival of the fittest. Christianity is a rebellion against natural law, a protest against nature. Taken to its logical extreme, Christianity would mean the systematic cultivation of the human failure.”

          Notice Hitler’s reference to “the law of selection.” This comes straight from Darwin. In The Descent of Man, Darwin writes:

          “With savages, the weak in body or mind are soon eliminated; and those that survive commonly exhibit a vigorous state of health. We civilized men, on the other hand, do our utmost to check the process of elimination; we build asylums for the imbecile, the maimed, the sick;….Thus the weak members of civilized societies propagate their kind. No one who has attended to the breeding of domestic animals will doubt that this must be highly injurious to the race of man.”

          At another point in The Descent of Man, Darwin writes:

          “The civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world.”

          And exterminating everyone perceived to be “savage” or unworthy of passing on their genes is exactly what the Nazis tried to do. It is not, then, difficult to see why historian Richard Weikart, in his book From Darwin to Hitler, was justified in saying that:

          “Darwinism by itself did not produce the Holocaust, but without Darwinism…neither Hitler nor his Nazi followers would have had the necessary scientific underpinnings to convince themselves and their collaborators that one of the world’s greatest atrocities was really morally praiseworthy.”

          Communism was an officially atheist form of government. This is an historical fact that it would be very silly to deny. In 1920, Vladimir Lenin (the key founder of the Soviet Union) stated:

          “We repudiate all morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas that are outside class conceptions. Morality is entirely subordinate to the interests of class war. Everything is moral that is necessary for the annihilation of the old exploiting social order and for uniting the proletariat.”

          Lenin also said:

          “Our program necessarily includes the propaganda of atheism.”

          Scott


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            Jim Chase says:

            n response to Jim Chase:
            If you listen to the cries of history, it is definitely not a good way to live. Communism and nazism are the two major political systems to have adopted state-sponsored atheism. Answer: Dear religatard, Nazism is a Christian based and style of government and was completely anti secular and communism and socialism are also VERY […]
            Jim,
            Again, the use of angry rhetoric (“regilatard”, etc.) is a “tell” that you are angry because you realize that your argument has fallen apart…much as a nervous tick made by a poker player is a “tell” that he is holding a weak hand, and is bluffing.

            Answer: Religatard: someone that cannot be taught because they are defending a belief. Example: Scott says Nazis are bad and that communist are bad and then like a tantrum throwing child ads his affirmation of the consequent, “they are bad because they are atheist”. The religatard Scott then defers to the argument you are mad and therefore bad after learning that Nazis were indeed Christian and that communist are a religious sect of people as well. It doesn’t matter to the religatard mind that all of Christianity supported Adolf Hitlers final solution up to the point when they learned they would profit form it…..No the religatard minds finds a distraction so that his feeble religious ass isn’t associated with a hate group (Christianity) with the blood of over 200 million in recent times!

            No, Nazism is not a Christian based institution. Hitler hated Christianity. He once said:
            “The law of selection justifies this incessant struggle, by allowing for the survival of the fittest. Christianity is a rebellion against natural law, a protest against nature. Taken to its logical extreme, Christianity would mean the systematic cultivation of the human failure.

            Answer: Your a religatard alright. Hitler’s Table Talk
            Those who deny Hitler as a Christian will invariably find the recorded table talk conversations of Hitler from 1941 to 1944 as incontrovertible evidence that he could not have been a Christian. The source usually comes from the English translation (from a French translation) edition by Norman Cameron and R. H. Stevens, with an introduction by H.R. Trevor-Roper. 

            The table-talk has Hitler saying such things such as: “I shall never come to terms with the Christian lie. . .”, “Our epoch will certainly see the end of the disease of Christianity”.
            The problem with these anti-Christian quotes is that the German text of the table-talk does not include them, they were made up by François Genoud, the translator of the French version, the very version that English translations rely on! (More on this below). 

            Even if you believed the table-talk included the anti-Christian quotes, nowhere in the talk does Hitler speak against Jesus or his own brand of Christianity. On the contrary, the table-talk has Hitler speaking admirably about Jesus. Hitler did, of course criticize organized religion in a political sense (as do many Christians today), but never in a religious sense. But the problems with using Hitler’s table talk conversations as evidence for Hitler’s apostasy are manyfold: 

            1) The reliability of the source (hearsay and editing by the anti-Catholic, Bormann)
            2) The reliability of multiple translations, from German to French to English.
            3) The bias of the translators (especially Genoud). 

            4) The table-talk reflects thoughts that do not occur in Hitler’s other private or public conversations. 

            5) Nowhere does Hitler denounce Jesus or his own brand of Christianity. 

            6) The “anti-Christian” portions of Table-Talk does not concur with Hitler’s actions for “positive” Christianity.
            Jim Walker

            Notice Hitler’s reference to “the law of selection.” This comes straight from Darwin. In The Descent of Man, Darwin writes:

            Answer: Darwin the Christian?

            “With savages, the weak in body or mind are soon eliminated; and those that survive commonly exhibit a vigorous state of health. We civilized men, on the other hand, do our utmost to check the process of elimination; we build asylums for the imbecile, the maimed, the sick;….Thus the weak members of civilized societies propagate their kind. No one who has attended to the breeding of domestic animals will doubt that this must be highly injurious to the race of man.”
            At another point in The Descent of Man, Darwin writes:
            “The civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world.”
            And exterminating everyone perceived to be “savage” or unworthy of passing on their genes is exactly what the Nazis tried to do. It is not, then, difficult to see why historian Richard Weikart, in his book From Darwin to Hitler, was justified in saying that:
            “Darwinism by itself did not produce the Holocaust, but without Darwinism…neither Hitler nor his Nazi followers would have had the necessary scientific underpinnings to convince themselves and their collaborators that one of the world’s greatest atrocities was really morally praiseworthy.”

            Answer: Dear religatard, Adolf Hitler believed that a supreme race existed outside of the lower forms of life that he did NOT DENY EVOLVED and nothing more……again, Darwin was Christian and Hitler more so!

            1.  Adolf Hitler: All of Culture Must Serve Our Mission
            For this, to be sure, from the child’s primer down to the last newspaper, every theater and every movie house, every advertising pillar and every billboard, must be pressed into the service of this one great mission, until the timorous prayer of our present parlor patriots: ‘Lord, make us free!’ is transformed in the brain of the smallest boy into the burning plea: ‘Almighty God, bless our arms when the time comes; be just as thou hast always been; judge now whether we be deserving of freedom; Lord, bless our battle!”

            – Adolf Hitler’s prayer, Mein Kampf, Vol. 2 Chapter 13
            2.  Adolf Hitler: War Against Spiritual, Political, Cultural Nihilism
            Hitler delivers a speech in which he promises to restore “family…honor and loyalty, Volkand Vaterland, culture and economy” and recover “the eternal foundation of our morality and our faith.” Hitler further declares a “merciless war against spiritual, political, and cultural nihilism.”

            – Adolf Hitler, speech, Feburary 1, 1933
            3.  Adolf Hitler: Secular Schools Cannot be Tolerated
            Secular schools can never be tolerated because such schools have no religious instruction, and a general moral instruction without a religious foundation is built on air; consequently, all character training and religion must be derived from faith …we need believing people.

            – Adolf Hitler, April 26, 1933, speech made during negotiations leading to the Nazi-Vatican Concordant

            4.  Adolf Hitler: We Will Fight the Atheistic Movement
            We were convinced that the people need and require this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.

            – Adolf Hitler, Speech in Berlin, October 24, 1933
            5.  The New York Times Story: “Atheist Hall Converted.”
            “In Freethinkers Hall, which before the Nazi resurgence was the national headquarters of the German Freethinkers League, the Berlin Protestant church authorities have opened a bureau for advice to the public in church matters. Its chief object is to win back former churchgoers and assist those who have not previously belonged to any religious congregation in obtaining church membership. The German Freethinkers League, which was swept away by the national revolution, was the largest of such organizations in Germany. It had about 500,000 members…”

            – The New York Times, May 14, 1933, page 2, on Hitler’s outlawing atheistic andfreethinking groups in the Spring of 1933, after the Enabling Act authorizing Hitler to rule by decree
            6.  Associated Press Story: “Campaign against ‘Godless Movement'”
            “A campaign against the ‘godless movement’ and an appeal for Catholic support were launched by Chancellor Adolf Hitler’s forces.”

            – Associated Press story, February 23, 1933,

            Communism was an officially atheist form of government. This is an historical fact that it would be very silly to deny. In 1920, Vladimir Lenin (the key founder of the Soviet Union) stated:
            “We repudiate all morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas that are outside class conceptions. Morality is entirely subordinate to the interests of class war. Everything is moral that is necessary for the annihilation of the old exploiting social order and for uniting the proletariat.”
            Lenin also said:

            Answer: Vladimir Lenin was of Jewish Ancestry as were approximately 95% of the Communists are/were.

            “Our program necessarily includes the propaganda of atheism.”

            Answer: I don’t have time to educate every religatard out there Scott. A deeper reading reveals far greater complexity.[2] To begin with, he argues that religion is both the response to and cause of oppression. On the first count, religion is a response to socio-economic exploitation (Marx, Collected Works 3:175-6; 5:4; Lenin 21:275-280). The true source of “religious humbugging” is economic slavery. In contrast to bourgeois radicalism, in which religion is the main issue, for communists the yoke of religion is the “product and reflection of the economic yoke within society” (Lenin 10:87 and 86; see also Lenin 15:405-6). At the same time, religion is also a cause of suffering.
            PS, Marx was religious as well and your attempts here are the fodder of typical Sunday School circle jerk lessons!


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              Scott Youngren ( User Karma: 34 ) says:

              Jim,

              Just go ahead and keep using bad names like “religatard.” Once again, every time that you do this, you are advertising the emotional and ideological (as opposed to rational) basis for your atheist views.

              Have you given up trying to find an historian from an accredited university who will back up your claim that Jesus never existed? As I said before, you will not, because you cannot, because no such historian exists. Period. End of story. Game over.

              The assertion that Nazism was a “Christian based religion” is ridiculous. Once again, I cited historian Richard Weikart, from his book From Darwin to Hitler, to demonstrate that Darwinism was a necessary component of the nazi’s philosophical justification of the holocaust.

              Please cite an historian from an accredited university to back up your claim that nazism was a “Christian based religion.” Once again, you will not, because you cannot, because no such historian exists. This is just another perfect example of the groundless hearsay that circulates on atheist forums.

              I never cited the “table-talk” source that you reference, so I don’t know why you are spending time trying to discredit it. Why don’t you respond to the sources that I have cited, instead of the sources that you wish I cited?

              I recommend this article (click here) regarding the Nazis and Christianity. An excerpt:

              Within a year of taking power, Hitler was saying:

              “Christianity was incapable of uniting the Germans, and that only an entirely new world-theory was capable of doing so.”

              Also within a year of the Nazis taking power, The Twenty-Five Theses of the German Religion, a conscious modeling of the twenty-five points of the Nazi program, was published in Germany. Thesis XV of that Nazi publication states:

              “The Ethic of the German Religion condemns all belief in inherited sin, as well as the Jewish-Christian teaching of a fallen world. Such a teaching is not only non-Germanic and non-German, it is immoral and nonreligious. Whoever preaches this menaces the morality of the people.”

              In February 1937 Hanns Kerrl, Minister of Religion in the Third Reich, said:

              “The question of the divinity of Christ is ridiculous and inessential. A new answer has arisen as to what Christ and Christianity are: Adolph Hitler.”

              University Nazis in Keil wrote in 1935:

              “We Germans are heathens and want no more Jewish religion in our Germany. We no longer believe in the Holy Ghost; we believe in the Holy Blood.”

              Your quotes about the Nazis being non-atheist are irrelevant because I never claimed that the nazis were atheists. My only claim is that they used Darwinian theory to justify the holocaust, and that they were very anti-Christian.

              You say that you “don’t have time to educate” me about communism and atheism. Once again, communism was an officially atheist political system, and to deny this historical fact would be as silly as denying the historical fact of the American Civil War. I am going to call you out on this one, Jim. What you really mean when you say that you don’t have time is that you CANNOT COHERENTLY RESPOND to my point that communism was officially atheist and that the communists have more blood on their hands than any political group in all of history.

              Scott

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