11/24/2002                                                                                       View Comments

The Prime Directive

for the Star Trek fans

Jesus was not really from our planet. He came from heaven, dwelt among us as a human, and returned to heaven where he is even now sitting at the right hand of the father, wherever that is. Though he presented himself in the form of a human male, he is really an altogether different life form from us. What exactly he really is, is beyond our comprehension, but with the eyes of faith we can learn to accept that HE IS, and that is enough for our small intellect. Can we can all agree on that?

In the Star Trek televsion and movie series, there is a Prime Directive that mandates non-interference with the evolution and development of primitive species, planets, cultures or civilizations by members of Star Fleet.

Jesus did not violate the prime directive.

Unlike his contemporaries in the first century, Jesus was omniscient and therefore had extensive knowledge of the following subjects

Ø Germs
Ø Disease
Ø Vaccines
Ø Sanitation
Ø Waste Disposal
Ø Sewage Disposal and Cleaning
Ø Water Purification
Ø Insecticides
Ø Electricity
Ø Combustion Engines
Ø Higher Education
Ø Democracy
Ø Fish Harvesting
Ø Television
Ø Airplanes
Ø Indoor Plumbing
Ø Advanced Farming
Ø Nutrition

The list could really be quite endless, going on and on, what with him being all knowing and such.

Instead of sharing any quality of life improving information with those he dealt amongst, even simple stuff, like how to make soap, he kept all such knowledge to himself, thereby condemning countless generations to untold suffering from crippling disease, famine, and premature death.

However, the accusation that Jesus violated the prime directive can never be cast at him.

Do you think he would he make a fine Star Fleet Officer?

Then again, since this life is totally meaningless, anything that prolongs life on earth is really a complete waste of time, so the quicker we die, the better, because then we get to be with the LORD.

I suppose that is why for over 1000 years after Christianity took a strong foothold in western society, all attempts at advancing medicine and science were either discouraged, thwarted or totally abandoned by all good Christians.

Ya Think?

11/23/2002                                                                                       View Comments


I picked up the paper today and read an article by Kathleen Parker that got me to thinking. Ms. Parker is a conservative columnist, and I agree with much she has to say. Today was no exception has I read her insights on the recent Michael Jackson fiasco over in Germany this week.

For those of you who may be out of touch, or read this article in the future, Mr. Jackson dangled his young infant over the guard rail of his fourth floor hotel balcony. He held the squirming kid by one arm showing the child off to the crowd in the street.

Now what is so interesting about this event is that there is no moral outcry about child endangerment for this display.

When I was stationed in Japan about 10 years ago, my wife and I went shopping at the base exchange taking our 2 year old daughter with us. She was the proverbial terrible two child at the time and wanted to touch this and grab that. When she was told no, she would go into a royal screaming fit of anger. Typical really for a child that age, but she excelled at making her displeasure known, so when that happened my wife retreated to the ladies bathroom with my daughter until such time as the fit subsided. This particular day my wife had to take her to the bathroom 3 times in order to rescue the other shoppers from premature deafness. My wife neither scolded the child, or used any sort of corporal punishment on her, just sat with her until she quieted down enough to re-enter polite society. On the third trip into the laboratory, a woman who had been observing this ritual decided she needed to become involved with what was going on. She entered the ladies room while my wife was in there and said, “ You need to stop beating your child right now!” My wife was offended and told the woman that she obviously did not have any children of her own, or she would not be so hasty as to make a remark like that. The woman stormed out of the room.

We left soon after that but were told by friends who worked there that the police showed up about 10 minutes after we left. They had received a report that some lady was abusing her infant son in the ladies bathroom. Fortunately we had left, but if we had still been there, we would have been subjected to a military investigation which may have resulted in mandatory parenting classes at the very least, just on one woman’s allegation. The military plays it safe in these matters, especially when within the borders of other countries.

In the local news here, a woman was brought up on charges, and had to appear in court for smacking her child in public. During the trial it was revealed that the child had used some very profane and disrespectful language on her mother and her mother had smacked her mouth. This was considered child abuse.

Now, Michael Jackson really endangers his child before the whole world and not one cry of foul to be heard.

This brings me back to Ms. Parker’s commentary on the subject. She points out that while the average person is held to a strict code of ethics in our society, if you are a star or hero, your odd behavior is simply accepted, perhaps even applauded. Excuses are made for the icons of our time as if being eccentric is not only expected but even required. Jackson’s children are name Prince Michael 1, (boy age five), Paris Michael (girl age 4) and the baby in the picture is Prince Michael 2. What’s more, when seen in public all the children’s faces are covered with veils. Then Jackson holds his kid with one arm over a ledge! “If anyone other than an extraordinarily wealthy, eccentric superstar celebrity had done what Jackson did, the child protection workers would have taken his children and started and investigation faster than you can say “thrillah.” to quote Ms. Parker.

Now here is where I make my point.

Christians use the same strange hero worship mentality when justifying the behavior and actions of their favorite god. Here is a verse often overlooked: “Luke 3:38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.”

When I was a Christian I believed that only those in Christ were privileged to be called the children of god. Here in plain language it is clear that Adam is the son of GOD. Since everyone can claim his heritage to Adam, according to the bible anyway, then all people in all times and places are technically children of GOD. Let’s think about how GOD treats his children for a minute.

Psalms 2:4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
Psalms 37:13 The Lord shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming.
Psalms 59:8 But thou, O LORD, shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision.
Proverbs 1:26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;

Exodus 32:27 Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side ... and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbour.--
Lev 26:29 And ye shall eat the flesh of your sons, and the flesh of your daughters shall ye eat.--
DT 7:16 And thou shalt consume all the people which the LORD thy God shall deliver thee; thine eye shall have no pity upon them.
Joshua 10:11 the LORD cast down great stones from heaven upon them ... and they died.
1 Sam 15:2-3 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, ... Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
Jer 16:4 They shall die of grievous deaths; they shall not be lamented; neither shall they be buried; but they shall be as dung upon the face of the earth: and they shall be consumed by the sword, and by famine; and their carcasses shall be meat for the fowls of heaven, and for the beasts of the earth.
Hosea 13:16 Their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.
Rev 9:15 The four angels were loosed to slay the third part of men.
Rev 19:21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

This is only a brief smattering of verses set to make a point. The bible is filled with horrible descriptions of death, torture, bloodshed, and cruel and unusual punishment all in the name of a loving and forgiving god.

Just having my baby cry in a store is interpreted as possible child abuse, but when the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, sovereign, superstar of the universe does the most heinous acts of violence against his own children, Christians simply retreat into the tired euphemism of “His ways are higher than our ways and our ways are not his ways.” In other words by way of allegory, we all know Michael Jackson is weird, so whatever he does is not a big problem in our minds. So likewise, we know that GOD is incomprehensible, so when he does incomprehensibly wicked things, well we shouldn’t question it, but just accept that somehow this too is love, mercy and justice.

Also see this fine article: Biblegod The War Criminal

Original Kathleen Parker article is posted HERE

11/22/2002                                                                                       View Comments

Are Christians Required to Tithe?

One of the pet doctrines I was always at odds with as a Christian was the tithe. Just out of curiosity I looked up what "Christianity Today" has to say about the subject. Since they are fairly mainstream, at least Evangelical mainstream, I find it interesting what I find there.

For instance, this question and answer:

"Q: The tithe is clearly taught in the Old Testament, but in the New Testament it seems to be downplayed. Are those of us who give 10 percent of our income doing something not required?"

"A: A simple yes or no to this question would be horribly misleading. (D.A. Carson)"

Well is it yes or no Mr. Carson? Christians are continually saying that true Christianity is not about money, but is that really true? Here is a little more of what good old DA had to say:

"...the New Testament provides no passage with the same explicit conclusion. (that 10% should be given)"

So, then that means Christians are not required to give 10% off the top of their incomes to their respective churches then right DA?

Nope, not that easy. As Mr. Carson meanders his way around the question without giving a real solid answer, he finally rests on this conclusion: "So, why not aim for 20 percent in your giving? Or 30? Or more,.."

That's the rub isn't it. Since the New Testament does not obligate Christians to give 10%, somehow it is logical in the mind of a full time paid clergyman that what is intended in the BIBLE is that Christians give MORE than the 10% - MUCH MORE!

These people should be ashamed of the way they heap bigger and bigger burdens on the backs of innocent people.

Just remember kids, it's not about money, it's about giving, and giving and giving...

The embarrassing thing is, that though I would never fall for other types of scam artists who use misleading language to take funds from unsuspecting people, I often felt under condemnation for not being more faithful in my church tax paying. (Tithe=TAX)

I have an opinion as to why Xtianity continues to preach tithe tithe tithe, other than the greed factor of course. I am sure that if the CHURCH ever stopped pushing the tithe thing, they would find that their operating funds would begin to dry up, as generous people gave to other more useful charities, or even used the money improving the lifestyles of their own families. There is quite obviously a lack of FAITH in the Holy Ghost to provide support for all the full time clergy out there who live off the labor of others. A good guilt trip a month or so can predictably bring in more $ than the omnipotent Spirit, or so it seems.

Anyway, if you want to save 10% this Sunday, just stay home from Church.


11/16/2002                                                                                       View Comments

Why do spirit-filled Christians interpret scripture differently?

Scripture is clear that one of the ministries of the Holy Spirit is to illumine the minds of Christians so they can understand Scripture (1 Corinthians 2:13-14). This being the case, why do spirit-filled Christians sometimes have different understandings as to what certain Bible verses mean?

In answering this question, one might liken the Holy Spirit to a radio station that is transmitting a perfect signal. Even though that radio signal is transmitted perfectly, there are all kinds of different quality radio receivers out there. Some have good reception; some have poor reception. Some have a good antennae; others have a broken antennae. Some have good batteries; others are low on energy. The point is, different radio receivers have varying degrees of success in receiving that perfect signal.

Christians are much the same way. The Holy Spirit's "signal" (that is, His illumination) is always perfect. But because of varying circumstances (perhaps sin, or not fully walking in the Spirit, or being overly concerned about the affairs of the world, or being blinded by Satan), Christians have varying degrees of success in properly receiving the Spirit's illumination.

The above article was copied from here

The reason I posted this article is because of the blatantly fallacious thinking demonstrated. I have been to numerous seminars and management training classes on communication. The one dynamic which is emphasized with overwhelming consensus from these lessons in communication is this: When the receiver does not understand the message, the sender is at fault.

For instance, when someone gives a speech, the speaker must take into consideration the audience to which he is speaking. He or she must tailor the subject, the vocabulary, any cliche's or allegories, so that the audience comprehends the speech. When dealing with day to day communication with employees, the responsibility for assuring that real and qualitative communication is happening falls on the shoulders of the manager. If I ask someone to perform a task, it is my job to make sure that whoever is receiving my instructions understands exactly what I intend. If what I issue is indistinct or unclear, I am then one who is at fault if the task fails. I must be sure that my words are understood before I can take someone to task for not successfully completing an assignment.

Communication is a difficult task, even when the backgrounds, language, culture and shared experiences of the people communicating are identical. When various differences are thrown into the mix, misunderstandings multiply. The good leader is aware of these hindrances to communication and strives to develop and continuously improve his or her own art of communication.

However, when it comes to GOD, the almighty perfect sovereign of the universe, at least in the religious person's mind, the responsibility never is attributed to resting on the shoulders of the sender. The receiver is always considered at fault if the instructions are misunderstood. GOD sends the messages directly into the hearts of his people by way of his HOLY SPIRIT anyway he wants, and if the receiver of the message doesn't "get it", or misunderstands, then that is the receiver's fault?

This logic is so ass-backwards that I find myself embarrassed for how so many of us fell for it for so long - me included.

If GOD is real and JESUS is GOD, then it falls to him to get his message understood. Since it is quite obvious that there is no unity in Christianity at all seeing as how every aspect of every major and minor doctrine has been argued about since the initial writing of the New Testament documents, then whatever message being sent is not divine, but man made, and a poor undeveloped attempt at communication, at that.

This is perhaps one of the major illogical and inconsistent aspects to Christianity that eventually dissolved my faith. I was involved with so many denominations filled with sincere true believers who differed so widely on so many issues that it became strikingly apparent to me that not one of them had any sort of divine guidance. Many were filled with religious zeal, including me, but as my theological moorings shifted from one flavor of Christianity to another, I began to realize that either GOD delights in the confusion of his saints, or there simply is no reality to any of this mystical holy ghost leading us into all truth mumbo jumbo.

If I give my three children instructions and they disagree amongst themselves on what it is I asked them to do, then who would you say screwed up?

11/10/2002                                                                                       View Comments


I have a wonderful lucky rabbit's foot. I don't know what I would do without it.

I try always to keep it with me.

My rabbit's foot is magical: I can ask it for anything I want, I can ask it to do anything I want, or to make anything happen, and it will make it happen. I can't explain how it does this, but I know, because it works. I have seen it work many, many times.

Of course, it only grants the requests that are best for me. Sometimes I foolishly ask for things that I shouldn't have, and so it wisely does not grant those requests. I have no idea how it "knows" what is best for me, but it does! It is a lot smarter than me, because a lot of things I ask for that I think would be good for me, it won't let me have them. So somehow they must be not good for me.

My rabbit's foot is also very protective of me. It keeps so many bad things from happening to me. I shudder to think of all the terrible things that would have happened to me if I hadn't had my rabbit's foot to protect me!

Once in a while, of course, my rabbit's foot does let something bad happen to me. That's to test me, to see if I will stop believing in my rabbit's foot. (I have to really, really believe in my rabbit's foot, because if I don't, it will stop working!) I guess it has to test me pretty often, because a lot of bad things have happened to me. But that's OK, because I do trust its better judgment 100%!

Some of them, I'm sure, are not the rabbit's foot's fault, but are caused by the demons and galactic aliens that would completely overcome me if it weren't for the rabbit's foot. It is just making sure that I don't forget that they are out there, waiting for me to give up relying on my foot for protection.

And sometimes bad things happen to me because I begin to think that it's silly to rely on a rabbit's foot so much. Boy, do I soon get reminded that I have to shape up! Usually the foot reminds me with some little thing, like making me spill a cup of coffee, or making me run out of gas, or sending a real bad thunderstorm. But I know! It's the foot, gently prodding me to trust it and not to stop believing!

But that's not the most amazing part about my rabbit's foot. I have thought a lot about it, and I realize that the reason the foot is so powerful is that the rabbit gave its life so that I could have its foot. I certainly don't deserve such a wonderful foot - I am fundamentally not a very good person sometimes - but the rabbit died for me anyway, so that I could have its foot with me always. And I'm sure that it has forgiven me for having had to die just for my sake.

But then I had to figure out how the rabbit could do that? And I did figure it out! That was no ordinary rabbit! That was some power or force that had entered into the rabbit so that it could be killed. And what power or force do you suppose could do that? It could only have been the very same power that made the whole world and everything in it. Isn't that awesome?

And now, get this! What is just about the worst thing that happens to anyone? They die. Well, do you think that my foot is going to let me die? Of course not! I'm sure that as soon as I die, my foot is going to bring me back to life, probably in a more wonderful place than I have ever been, where nothing bad will ever happen. That's what my foot will do for me (I am so fortunate)!

I can't explain it, and it's really amazing. When I tell my friends about it, they laugh at me, and tell me I'm superstitious and stupid, but I know that they are just jealous, and are trying to make me stop believing in my foot. No wonder bad things happen to them. And worst of all, when they die, they are going to stay dead and just rot. Ha Ha Ha!

But sometimes when I tell somebody about my foot, they are really interested and want to know where they can get a foot like mine. I've discovered that they don't really have to have a foot, as long as they believe in my foot. No matter where they are, they can ask my foot for whatever they need, and do you know what? My foot hears them and treats them just like it does me.

But they have to really believe that it will work, or otherwise it doesn't.

I feel so sorry for people who don't have a rabbit's foot.

- Richard Packham

© 2001 Richard Packham Permission granted to reproduce for non-commercial purposes, provided text is not changed and this copyright notice is included

11/03/2002                                                                                       View Comments


Justifying Non-Christian Objections
Douglas Wilson & Farrell Till

Whenever we object to something, we always assume some standard or rule that the thing violates. Similarly, when non-Christians object to the Christian faith, they assume some standard that Christianity violates. But can non-Christians justify these standards that they so readily use? In the following interchange, the editor of Credenda/Agenda, Douglas Wilson and Farrell Till, editor of The Skeptical Review, discuss the topic of justifying non-Christian standards of ethics and reason.

For the past thirty years, Farrell Till has been an English instructor at Spoon River College in Canton, Illinois. Prior to this, he was a preacher and foreign missionary for the Church of Christ. He attended two Bible colleges and received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Harding University. His preaching career spanned twelve years, five of which were spent in missionary work in France. After becoming an agnostic, he quit the ministry in 1963 and began a teaching career. For the past five years, he has edited The Skeptical Review, a quarterly journal that focuses on the doctrine of biblical inerrancy. He has regularly debated inerrancy-related issues in various public forums, including radio and television. Having begun this work as an agnostic, he now considers himself an atheist.

DW: Many unbelievers commonly object to the God of the Bible on the basis of ethical "problems" with the character of God as revealed in the Scriptures. Whether they use psalms of imprecation, the slaughter of the Canaanites, the eternal wrath of God on the impenitent, etc ., the central theme is usually the same "Who would want to worship a God like that !" But despite the surface plausibility of the objection, a careful examination of it shows their Achilles attacking our Hector with his bare heel. Far from being the unbeliever's strongest case against the true God, this objection actually reveals the radical futility of unbelief; without God there are no ethical objections to anything .

FT: Although you didn't expressly state the "objective-morality" position of evangelical apologists, you certainly implied it when you said that "without God there are no ethical objections to anything." The fallacy of this position is its failure to recognize that morality is an intellectual abstraction. As such, it is no different from abstractions of tragedy, sorrow, or any of many other abstractions the human mind has formulated from its broad range of experience. Arguing that human intelligence cannot determine if acts are immoral without a god to tell us they are is as illogical as arguing that we cannot tell if events are tragic without a god of tragedy to tell us they are.

DW: Fine, I'll bite. If there is no God, then all the things you mention are in the same meaningless category. Morality, tragedy, and sorrow are equally evanescent. They are all empty sensations created by the chemical reactions of the brain, in turn created by too much pizza the night before. If there is no God, then all abstractions are chemical epiphenomena, like swamp gas over fetid water. This means that we have no reason for assigning truth and falsity to the chemical fizz we call reasoning or right and wrong to the irrational reaction we call morality. If no God, mankind is a set of bi-pedal carbon units of mostly water. And nothing else.

FT: You bit too hard. In equating all human abstractions with "swamp gas over fetid water," you overlook verifiable facts. The human mind can think; swamp gas can't. Human intelligence can evaluate situations and formulate abstractions of beauty, happiness, sorrow, fairness and morality; swamp gas can't. Are these abstractions valid? Well, what IQ level is needed to conceptualize abstractions like beautiful, sad, fair, right or wrong? Can one with an IQ of 100 do it, or must his IQ be infinite? The existence of moral concepts is verifiable; the existence of gods who put such concepts into human minds is unverifiable. Please address this problem.

DW: You missed my challenge. You acknowledge the distinction between human intelligence and swamp gas, but you have no way to account for it. If there is no God, then why is there a distinction between the chemical reactions in your head and elsewhere? Suppose we agreed that the walls of a house are straight. I say there must be a foundation under it -- a precondition for straight walls. Your hypothesis is the house has no foundation at all and doesn't need one. "See, the walls are straight without a foundation." But given your worldview's assumptions, why ? Can you explain how time and chance acting on matter can produce the straight walls of reason and morality?

FT: No, you missed my challenge. You are the asserter, so you must bear the burden of proving your assertion. You have asserted that "without God there are no ethical objections to anything," so I insist that you prove that. You have admitted that human intelligence can formulate abstractions, but you say that " all abstractions are chemical epiphenomena, like swamp gas over fetid water." Prove that please. Can the brain's solution of algebra problems be right? If so, does "God" have to put the right solutions into the brain? If not, can a brain that correctly solves algebra problems correctly solve moral problems? If not, why not? Where did your god get his intelligence?

DW: Since you insist, I'm glad to repeat my argument. If there is no God , then all that exists is time and chance acting on matter. If this is true then the difference between your thoughts and mine correspond to the difference between shaking up a bottle of Mountain Dew and a bottle of Dr. Pepper. You simply fizz atheistically and I fizz theistically. This means that you do not hold to atheism because it is true , but rather because of a series of chemical reactions. Thus, your atheism destroys rationality and morality. Intellectual and moral relativism have long challenged atheistic worldviews. No atheist has successfully addressed this problem, although you are invited to try.

FT: If I fizzed "flat-earthly," and you fizzed "round-earthly," would you argue that you don't hold your view because it's true but "rather because of a series of chemical reactions"? Would your "round-earthism" then destroy rationality and science? There is a truth in the theism-atheism controversy. The fact that no one can establish that truth to everyone's satisfaction doesn't mean the truth doesn't exist. So I'll repeat my challenge. What IQ level is necessary to abstract moral concepts? To discover moral truths? Let's take the Amalekite massacre (1 Sam. 15:2-3). How much intelligence is needed to determine that no morally perfect entity could have ordered the slaughter of children and babies?

DW: "There is truth in the theism-atheism controversy." Amen. You are able to say so because you assume that truth is objective. Again, you bet. But objective truth cannot be validly derived from the premises of your worldview. You are borrowing objective rationality and morality from the Christian worldview in order to attack the rationality and morality of the Christian worldview. There was a moral problem in the Amalekite attack -- Saul was disobedient and didn't kill everything as God instructed. You should have no objection. Given your worldview, there is no moral difference between the Amalekite massacre and a day at the beach. In both cases, all you have is atoms banging around.

FT: If the Amalekite children who were killed with Israelite spears could speak, would they say there was any difference in what happened to them and a day at the beach? You know they would. What IQ level would they need to distinguish the difference? You have evaded the issue long enough, so why don't you tell us how much intelligence is needed to formulate abstractions of beauty, loyalty, justice, etc.? Without a god of beauty, can one validly determine that a sunset is beautiful? If so, why can't one determine that acts are immoral without a god of morality? Truth is objective because of reality, not because some deity arbitrarily decides what truth is.

DW: Well of course, you and the Amalekite children may assert some objective moral distinction between good and evil. But given the basic assumptions of your worldview, neither of you can justify that distinction. On your assumptions , the chance collection of atoms called Jews objected to the Holocaust; the random atoms called Nazis did not. And so what? Given atheism, what is the difference? Do the good atoms wear white hats? Your persevering but irrelevant inquiries about intelligence reveal that you do not yet understand the nature of the problem. Objective and universal standards of reason, morality, and beauty simply cannot exist in your purely material world. You are fighting Christianity with borrowed Christian weapons.

FT: When have I said that "objective morality" exists? It doesn't. To say that objective morality doesn't exist, however, is not to say that morality doesn't exist. Rational processes can validly distinguish "good" from "evil" just as they can validly distinguish happiness from sorrow, but I can't explain in 115 words how this can be done. If you care to debate this in a less confining forum than your "Disputatio" format, then let's do it. Meanwhile, why don't you explain where your objective morality came from? If you say, "From God," then please explain where he came from. No theist has successfully addressed this problem, but you're invited to try. Try to remember that you're the asserter.

DW: If morality is not objective, then it is subjective. If it is subjective, then it is as diverse as five billion subjective states of mind. Such fragmented subjectivity provides no authoritative ethical voice, and hence no morality deserving of the name. Related to this, you must now disclaim "objective rationality" as well as "objective morality," for the two are built on the same foundation -- or rather, in your worldview, not built on the same non-foundation. But if objective rationality does not exist, then your worldview does not permit you to reason for three words in a row, much less 115. The laws of logic are as nonmaterial as the God you so diligently oppose.

FT: Are you arguing that subjectivism cannot determine truth? If so, reality will not support your claim. You keep harping about my worldview, so please address the many problems in your "worldview." Where did "objective" reality come from? From God? Well, where did he come from? How can one determine what "objective" morality is? From the Bible? If so, a lot of subjectivism will be involved in reading and interpreting it. Looking for "objective" morality in the Bible will produce a morality "as diverse as 5 billion subjective states of mind." If not, why not? "Such fragmented subjectivity" will provide "no authoritative ethical voice" and so "no morality deserving of the name." Please address this issue.

DW: Reality doesn't support my claim? Would this be your reality or mine? Would this be subjective or objective reality? If subjective, then I don't think ice cream has bones either. If objective, then you would have to identify (and defend) the authoritative voice through which this reality speaks. Of course, I am arguing (and have shown) that subjectivism destroys truth. The fact that you have in effect embraced subjectivism means that the debate over the existence of God is over, and we are now discussing certain problems that arise from an affirmation of His existence. Having shown that atheism is inescapably false, I am happy to turn to the problems you raise. Next round.

FT: You've been a master of evasion. You assert the existence of "objective" morality, but you have evaded all challenges to prove that it exists. Nothing exists -- not even your god -- simply because it would be nice if it did exist. In your final installment, please address this issue. How do you know that "objective" morality exists? Where did it originate? If you say from God, please prove that God exists. If "objective" morality is revealed in the Bible, it becomes something inseparable from subjective interpretation, so just what is the great advantage that your "worldview" has over mine? If you ignore this issue again, I'm afraid your evasion will be obvious to all.

DW: The proof you seek has been pervasive throughout the debate. I have been pointing to the impossibility of your alternative. The debate over God's existence does not fit in the same category as a debate over the existence of peach jam. The jam may or may not exist, leaving our thought processes unaffected either way. If God does not exist (as this alleged "master of evasion" has pointed out repeatedly above), then our thought processes (yours and mine) are one thing. If He does exist, then they are something else entirely. The content of your affirmations has been atheistic, your unacknowledged presuppositions theistic. This means that, on a fundamental level, you and I agree that He is.

Originally appeared in Credenda/Agenda (Vol. 7; No. 1)