I have been debating a Pastor on twitter now for some time and I was getting nowhere. After lost of anger and frustration I asked him for his single best argument for god. I wanted the best he had to offer and the one thing that would convince me I was wrong. He sent me back the following which he admittedly pulled from another source. I've decided to attempt to answer it, but could use any help you all would be willing to supply. I figure if I show him his best arguments are flawed then he will have no reason to continue to bombard my email and twitter and I will have won a small victory. Well, here it is:

The purpose for sending you this email is to show you that believing in
a God is not a blind faith, but rather a logical faith. A faith in
which all the empirical facts back up the belief that God exists.  I

This is a three part cumulative argument, starting with the weakest and
ending with the strongest. The first, although it doesn't prove that
God exists, shows how an atheist lives inconsistently with their
belief. The second lays down all the empirical facts and shows that the
best explanation for all of the facts is that God exists.  And the
third is the scientific argument which shows that even science points
to a God. Keep in mind that no presumption made can be proved as true
for CERTAIN. I'm simply showing you that the belief in a theistic
universe is the best explaination for the world's existence. The
scientific theories that I will use to back up the argument for the
existence of God have not yet been disproved and are all backed up with
strong evidence such as the Principle of Causality,  the Big Bang
Theory, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics. IF YOUR PRESUMPTION THAT

I) Psychological Argument For The Existence Of God.
Either God exists or He doesn't.  If God doesn't exist then there are
three things that are true.
    A) Life holds no ULTIMATE significance. Even if you argued that
there is significance in
   your life such as the enjoyment of doing anything you want, it
would not be the Ultimate significance because everyone who has lived
or will live in the future will eventually end up in the grave. Even if
reincarnation exists everyone will still die and become nothing because
the world is slowly deteriorating down to nothing itself.
   B) Life has no value. Everthing is permissible. There is no such
thing as right and wrong because there is no all knowing and all
powerful Creator to define what is good and what is bad. It becomes
society who tries to define it. What does that matter though if the
people making laws define right from wrong. They are just as human as
any other person in the world. The only thing that truly exists is
personal preference. What Hitler, Stalin, or any other mass murderer
did was not wrong at all. They simply had a different personal
preference than you do. The point is, you shouldn't tell anyone that
they are wrong or even right because they aren't either of those
things.  You can believe that its wrong, but you have no place to
ground it. People can do anything they want to do without getting
punished for their actions if the world lived consistently with the
belief that God doesn't exist.
   C) There is no purpose to life. Life has no ultimate goal. There is
no reason for living. Sacrifice for someone else's life would be stupid.

This argument shows that an atheist lives inconsistently with their own
belief.  If a murderer who believed murder to be ok, came into your
house to brutally murder you and your family, would you think that HE
is wrong to do that? If you said no, that he isn't doing any thing
wrong, then you would be living consistantly with your beliefs. But if
you said yes, then you would live as if there were objective morals.
But if there is no god to define objective morality then there is only
subjective morality. So by saying it is wrong makes it only your
opinion, but not the murderers opinion. You would be "pushing your
morality on him" which is the opposite of what you believe. You
probably believe that "it is wrong to push your morality on another
person." Even that statement right there is another objective moral
statement.  In other words you express your opinions, but don't always
live by them.

II) Probable argument.
Scientist say that if you have a group of facts out there, you should
have a paradigm that best explains these facts. Here are the facts that
everyone who's sane would agree on.
    A) Religious experience
    What ever culture you go into, people are incurably religious. In
every culture you see three things.
         1) Everyone, except the atheist, worships a being higher than
         2) Everyone has a morality they cannot keep.
         3) Everyone is psychologically unsatisfied. People feel an
emptiness in themselves that they want to fill. If the material world
was the only thing that existed and if all your material needs were
met, you should be satesfied right? But how come people who have the
most wealth are usually the most unhappy. They constantly want more and
         And how can you explain the millions of people in the world
who say they have felt the closeness of God in their lives? I
personally am included with them. I have felt God's presence in my life
on a consistent basis. Now how can you rationally explain that without
God's existence?
    B) Miracles.
    There are many people in the world who report seeing miracles. In
other words there are people who say that they saw a situation occur
where there is no naturalistic explanation for it. I personally know
people who have had miraculous situations occur, such as immediate
healings. You might argue that science will someday explain those
things, but right now you can't explain them. The best explaination is
God, because if God created the world then it wouldn't be hard to
believe that he can intervene supernaturally in this world.
    C) Morality
    How do you explain where guilt comes from? How do you explain why
all people in the world have this feeling called a conscience that
seems to tell them that something is wrong, such as murder. How come
people feel a heavy weight on their emotions called guilt when they do
something wrong, such as lie and steal, and the best thing to do to
take the weight off themselves is to tell the truth and/or ask for
forgiveness. If God doesn't exist, then how could you rationally
explain all that?
    D) Design
    First of all, explain the existence of the world. How can you have
something and not nothing? We see a world so complex that it looks like
someone designed it. It has an incredible amount of order to it. If you
walked on a beach and saw the words "I love you" written in the sand,
would you say, "Isn't it funny how the water by random chance formed
those words in the sand." No, you would think that some person wrote
those words themselves. If you took apart a computer and examined the
complex parts, would you say, "Isn't it funny how a building with
mechanical parts exploded and by random chance came together and
created this computer." no, you would think that an intelligent
designer spent his time to put the computer together. But how come you
see a world full of more complexity and order then every man made
structure put together and you assume that no intelligent designer
created it? A single strand of DNA has more information on it then the
whole Encyclopedia Britannica. You can't even explain it without God.
    Tell me, have you ever seen design and never a designer? You might
say that science will explain these questions in the future. Do you
think then that the belief in God's existence is stupid? I'm just being
what any truly rational person should be, looking at the facts and
choosing the best explanation for all those facts. That's how any
scientific hypotheses works. But you still don't want to believe in
God. You are simply not being a rational person with any of the facts
that we have.  You just don't want to believe it, not for intellectual
reasons, but because you just don't want do believe it period, with no
evidence on your side.


III) The Cosmological argument
    A) Principle of Causality:  Everything that comes to be needs a
cause. All science is built on the principle of causality. If it didn't
exist then we would have to remove the word "because" from our
language. How could we really talk without it?
    B) Since something cannot come from nothing, something has to be
eternal. It's either God or the World.
    C) In 1929 a man named Edward Hubble discovered that the redness
of the stars showed that the universe was constantly expanding
equilaterally in all directions. He said that the best explanation for
that is that there must have been a point in time, called the Big Bang
theory where the universe was nothing and then came to be.
    D) To further the evidence for the universe having a beginning,
there is the scientific law, the 2nd law of Thermodynamics. It says
heat moves from hotter bodies to cooler bodies until there is an
equilibrium. In other words the universe is constantly winding down
until there is a heat death in our universe. That just goes to prove
that if the world was eternal then heat death would have already
occurred, but since it hasn't occured yet, the universe had to have a
beginning. You might say, "Maybe new heat is being put into the
universe. But the 1st law of Thermodynamics goes against it because it
says that there is no new energy being put into the universe. Since
everything that comes to be (the world) needs a cause, the best
explanation for this is God. Because there is only two explanations
that we see exist. 1. God, and 2. the World.  God is the best
explanation between the two.

PS. I borrowed alot of the material from Matthew D Combs who has years
of experience defending the faith. Please read through these which I'm
sure you've gone through most of these arguments many times.

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I do not know. It blows my mind, but I want to show him how flawed this all is. (Soon after this he pointed me to some of his "former atheist" buddies)
The psychological aspect is too (and I'm not fond of this word) stupid to comment on. I apologize for that not being a sound way to argue, but I can't even go there.

I like the Probable Argument.
A. The religious experience: Uh, duh. Religions developed all over the globe as a way to order society and to explain things that could not be explained (yet), among other things. Many religions are extremely different. Multiple gods, goddesses, monotheism, no god at all, etc. The fact that religion exists in the plural is not a basis for god existing. As for people "feeling" god, that's completely subjective. People "feel" all kinds of things, and that doesn't always prove to be based anywhere other than the mind.
B. Miracles: In
other words there are people who say that they saw a situation occur
where there is no naturalistic explanation for it.
I could say I saw a little green man with orange testacles dancing on my kitchen table. Is that a miracle? Is it the truth? Sometimes something may seem miraculous to someone who doesn't have a full grasp on a subject. Like someone whom the doctors said had no chance to live pulls through unscathed. Well, biology is amazing and diverse. Does that make it a religious miracle or a biological miracle-- or a miracle at all? I think sometimes people see something and they personally (which doesn't mean that someone with some knowledge on the topic couldn't) don't know how to explain it, so viola! It's a miracle! I also feel that miracles that aren't attributed to the fanatics or the scammers can be attributed to something that hasn't been explained scientifically-- yet. But it will. Again, this isn't what I would consider proof for a god.
C. Morality: This man needs to have a firmer background on the evolution of man. We would not have survived as a species if we went around killing whomever we wanted when we wanted. We, too, had to have rules so that we could get along together semi-peaceably in groups in order to survive. Once upon a time we were rather primitive. We didn't have houses, grocery stores, and the Gap. We had to find/build our own shelters, hunt/gather our own food, and clothe ourselves (often with skins of animals we killed). All of this required teamwork. Guilt, much like the love of high-calorie foods, is something we possess inherently. We don't really need a god to help with that. However, religion has played a huge part in making people feel guilty for their inherent biology and thus senselessly hating themselves, so we can definitely thank god for that!
D. Design. I disagree. I feel it is just the opposite of what this guy believes. To me, the world being "designed" by one being is utterly more complicated than it unfolding scientifically and naturally through physics, biology, evolution, mathematics, etc. One deity being so intricately wowza-intelligent and putting together a universe is way more out-there to me than a scientific theory.

As for a cosmological theory to explain how the universe came into being, there are a few. In truth, no one really knows. For all we know, the universe always "was." That doesn't prove the existence of a god, either.

But maybe I could consult the green man on my kitchen table. He might have some insight...
Nice collection of invalid arguments, nothing more...
Just terrible arguments.

The first thing I would do if I were talking to this guy would be to ask him to define god and to give his arguments as to why his version is true and other religions versions are not. They all use the same supportive arguments... Truth in sacred scripture. Miracles. Personal spiritual experiences. Fullfilling of prophesy. etc...

After he fails there I'd ask him if he would be willing to switch to hinduism or one of the yoga paths to hold on to his faith in a 'creator god' if Paul Steinhardt and Neil Turok's cyclic model of the universe turns out to be true?
This is a pretty sticky question. If they really want to support their arguments from a scientific standpoint then they MUST be HONESTLY willing to adopt a different belief system if the evidence points toward doing so. I think very few people could honestly say they would or even could do it. I imagine it would be an uncomfortable question.

and then this stickler.... I'd ask him to tell you the ultimate purpose of life.

If our very salvation forever and ever hinges upon our acknowledgement of our sinful and unworthy nature and our acceptance that God created such a system that he had to kill himself in order to save a small portion of his creation...... What the fuck kinda ultimate purpose is that? What great wisdom and spiritual knowledge is gleaned from that?

Why did an all-powerful, all-knowing being create an ETERNAL TORTURE CHAMBER and fill it with MOST of his creation? What kind of ultimate purpose is that?

Why didn't an all-powerful, all-knowing being create a universe that was based on rehabilitation and growth? Why does all growth stop after the incredibly short insignificant physical lifespan? If its not possible to learn anything after you die then what the fuck is the ultimate purpose to eternal damnation?

Why the fuck didn't god create a system in which people could learn from their mistakes, atone and ask forgiveness even after they died?

Oh well ,,, lol... those are just a few things I'd ask him
Wow, I never heard it put so succinctly:

God's ultimate purpose for most of humanity is to be eternally tortured!

Nicely done.
Well, I wonder if the god he keeps mentioning is the Christian god, for he offers no proof of it. If he means some other god--how does he know what that god thinks?

He banks heavily on The Big Bang Theory not realizing that scientists have various conflicting theories on the nature of the universe, IUT, for example. It certainly didn't come from nothing, i.e. finite singularity if, as many scientists believe, the universe is infinite. And nothingness is impossible.

DNA? Scientists have not discovered the mechanism for the creation of life, but to postulate a god in place of ignorance is foolish. Science has proven itself many times and given us 'miracles'. Religion has merely been a clog in the wheel.
You bet. I heard about that when JC Venter was on the telly awhile back. Fascinating.

What a depressing world view. I'm not sure if I'm sad for him or elated that I never felt this way.
Something I featured on SMS awhile back, might come in handy with this guy...

21 Unconvincing Arguments for God - A list by August Berkshire that he says is "meant to be a time-saving device for believers." Basically: These are the arguments we've already heard a hundred times, given exhaustive thought to, and are completely unswayed by. So essentially, if you want us to give your argument serious thought, think of something new. For your printing convenience, a two page PDF is available.
Duly printed. Very awesome-- thanks.
I stopped reading at "life holds no significance". Oh. There's that dumbass "what's the end game?" argument my father was trying to bait me into swallowing. There IS no end game. The animals realize it! Humans are the only ones dumb enough to try to justify life with meaning via a bogus, non-existent aspect!
it seems that most of his arguments based on scientific facts are only assumptions of what he thinks atheists believe.

Who among us thinks that life's significance is to do whatever we want? I surly don't. Life has different meanings to different people.

Morality....well, morality comes from previous experiences in life, or just common sense and logic. from there on our society teaches us what is right or wrong. not only that, this guy has some pretty poor examples.

No atheist that I know believes that something comes from nothing. this is simply an assumption that this man has made.

miracles...just because you cant explain something, it doesn't mean there isn't a logical explanation for it. and to believe in miracles just because other people claim to have experienced them doesn't make any sense. its like believing in aliens simply because billy bob claims that he got anal probed.

as far as people needing to fill a void...not feeling whole without religion, I beg to differ. I can say first hand that I don't miss a feeling that I never had.

this man seems to think that atheists are hedonistic and don't respect the rights of others.
It makes me wonder if he has actually gotten to know an atheist, or if he just spends his time thinking of arguments against them.


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