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Questions Theists Can’t Answer: 2 Wise Observations

Belief is, by definition, the consideration of something unsupported by evidence. Because of this, it is inherently unfounded on truth.

Depends on what sort of belief is under consideration. Some beliefs are logical deductions based on other beliefs. These are founded on the truth of the beliefs that come before them. Others are grounding beliefs that have no evidence to support them one way or the other.

The problem with this statement is that it applies to atheists as well. Everyone, whether theist or atheist, starts somewhere in their structure of beliefs. Those presuppositions upon which a worldview is based are really the crux of the debate between atheism and theism. The theist starts with God, while the theist starts with nature.

I’ve also noticed that one atheist commented that one way they can tell that theists are full of “bullshit” is that we can answer every question. The scientist, it is reasoned, admits his limitation and is happy to say, “I don’t know” when he doesn’t know the answer. Theists, on the other hand, answer every question that the atheist proposes. Since we never seem to admit that we don’t know the answer, that means that we’re full of it.

So, basically, we’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t.  Let me illustrate why.

The existence of a list such as this indicates that the atheist believes that we can’t answer every question proposed. That might be true. A few months after I started my main blog, I was forced to admit that I didn’t know the answer to the proposed dilemma:

So which is stronger, manfluence or Godfluence? Well, Hasic posits that man put the belief about God in the heads of children, and that the kids are responding to that belief, not to God. But this overlooks the fact that God determined the situation in which these kids were placed, not man. If they grow up Hindu, Buddhist, or Muslim, He wanted that to happen for a reason known only to Him and that increases His glory somehow.

I don’t know why and there isn’t any way to find out (Job 37:5). (source, emphasis added)

There really are somethings that humans don’t know the answers to, and I’ve tried to be forthright about that. Now, usually when I do, the atheist in the argument immediately claims victory: “Ha! I found a question you don’t know the answer to! I win!”

Can’t have it both ways, guys. Either you want me to answer everything, or you want me to admit that I occasionally don’t have an answer. But you can’t claim victory when I have all of the answers, and also claim victory if I don’t have all the answers. We call that “stacking the deck.”

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About Cory Tucholski

I'm a born-again Christian, amateur apologist and philosopher, father of 3. Want to know more? Check the "About" page!

Posted on April 5, 2011, in Apologetics, WWGHA and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I feel like reasonable arguers will give you credit for simply telling the truth–whatever that may be! (Whether you “don’t know” something, or you believe you have an answer for it).

  2. Right, we all start with certain axioms.

    The naturalistic ones tho seem to be of the sort that are most fundamental, and most pointless to dispute. The universe exists. (we could be figments of the imagination of the FSM, but… why spend your life pondering that?). The laws of nature are constant. (electricity might work completely differently tomorrow. Let’s worry about that when it happens). etc.

    So it’s a fairly minimal set of assumptions, based on what we’re observing. Theism on the other hand drags in this big, game-changing yet completely unobserved entity that frequently appears un-necessary for rational explanations. Also it’s not just some vague creator, let’s be honest. When proposed by organised religion, it usually comes with a whole load of baggage and detail. (is a personal being. Has views on human sexuality. Sends agents to earth). Basically I think that’s a whole load more to swallow than “the universe exists”.

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