Until recently I had hoped that the focus on logical argumentation by many of the leading apologists out there might have trickled down to the herd, giving me at least an interesting debate. Let me point out the fallacies on one single Youtube thread on which I was basically the only non-believer posting while 3 or 4 christians had a go at me.
My argument was that the bible is internally incoherent based on the following incompatible premises.
- God claims to love all sinners.
- 1 Corinthians 13 defines love.
- God becomes so angry over a single sin that he decrees the sinner deserving of eternal torment.
- This decree of damnation (as opposed to rehabilitation) imposed on a son he loved is in violation of the standard of love found in 1 Corinthians 13.
The entire thread in all its glory is found here (inactive).
Here are just some of the responses I encountered.
- Why would ANYONE think 1 Corinthians has to do with God’s love?
[YT user: spgdmin]
This spgdmin is presumably a christian who ought to know his bible. 1 Corinthians 13 is called the “love chapter”. Unless he is saying that god’s love is different from the love that god requires of humans (it would actually have to be inverted to work as an argument here), then I can only conclude he does not read his bible much. This really becomes problematic if christians also claim Jesus is god, for he says in John 15:12 “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.” (The deity of Jesus is not even necessary here since John 15:9 reads “As my father has loved me so have I loved you.”) If this love which christians are told to direct towards each other is some sick inverted love that requires torture consistent with the love of the “loving” god who metes out such torture in the form of Hell, then churches today would be better served if they had the apparati of the Inquisition at their disposal.
- (1) Moral law implies a Moral Lawgiver.
(2) There is an objective moral law.
(3) Therefore, there is an objective Moral Lawgiver.
Unless you refute the logic your position is illogical.
[YT user: FORCHRST ]
Having in no way introduced morality (as I wouldn’t since I don’t believe it exists as conventionally defined), this FORCHRST now demands that I must answer his argument on morality in order to make my argument on the internal incoherency of a malicious loving god logical.
- You say, “This [the Bible’s] incoherence is my ONLY point!” Yes, this is the point you’ve unsuccessfully tried to make. However, this isn’t the point I’ve been asking you about, is it?
[ YT user: spgdmin ]
I suggest that if you take away the common christian tactic of claiming victory without argument, and dropping a red herring into the mix in an attempt to distract from the point staring them in the eye, they would be hard pressed for content. However, as incredible as it might seem, this tactic is considered an appropriate response by a majority of christians. In this case, spgdmin asserted that I did not understand the scriptures since I was a non-believer. I assured him that I had spent much time reading the Greek New Testament as a believer, and that I would like his interpretation of the passages in question. No response. And not surprising given his statement about 1 Corinthians above.
- When you assert the Bible is “internally inconsistent” while you ignore your own inconsistencies, you are simply begging the question.
[ YT user: spgdmin ]
This is an response I’ll always treasure. Illogic does not come any rawer than this. And spgdmin does not even bat an eye. William Lane Craig! Ravi Zacharias! It’s time to take your boys back to school to learn some fundamentals! Not only does spgdmin call my argument an assertion, he trumps it by asserting that I had been inconsistent. Then he calls it “begging the question”. Perhaps the holy spirit does not have the power to assure that its residences perfectly avoid minor logical fallacies, but couldn’t the holy spirit at least stop believers from embarrassing themselves to such a degree?
- Have you only told one lie in your life? I know that I’ve told many. And I thank God that I was punished for those lies leading me to repentance and a desire to know and tell truth.
[YT user: cliffw77 ]
This was in response to my claim that one sin, such as a lie, was enough for the “loving” god of the bible to deem the liar deserving of eternal torment. Cliffw77 confuses earthly “punishment” and eternal “damnation”. And could not convince him that this was illogical even after several attempts. That exchange drifted to another thread. He also attempted to make me demonstrate that there actually was someone that had been condemned for a single sin. I assured him that this was not necessary for my argument since I only had to show that, in his god’s eyes, the sinner of a single sin deserved eternal torment.
- You probably first read [the argument you used] somewhere else?
[ YT user: spgdmin ]
Here is the inference that, because I had gotten the argument somewhere else, the argument was devalued somehow. Now the humorous thing is that this very same argument had been disparaged just a month earlier by another christian who claimed “I think you just made that argument up!” The truth is I had thought of the argument on my own, but in a wonderful demonstration of the ideological convergence of seekers committed to rational thought, I discovered that others had been using it long before I had!
I do have more hope for the maturing children of most christians. They are living in an age where irrational beliefs are more quickly exposed as fallacious though the medium of on-line interaction which allows them to explore beyond the isolation of their physical communities. As reasoning skills develop, I am confident that the cognitive dissonance of a religious belief system will draw many to the freedoms of rationality.