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8/27/2006                                                                                       View Comments

William Lane Craig versus Eddie Tabash Debate



Secular Humanism versus Christianity, Lawyer versus Theologian. Evangelical Christian apologist William Lane Craig debates humanist atheist lawyer Eddie Tabash at Pepperdine University, February 8, 1999.

17 comments:

Dave Harty said...

Am I the only one who felt like I was losing brain cells everytime the Theologian got up to speak? I was drowning in his ignorance! I can only imagine how frustrating the whole thing was for Mr. Tabash!

boomSLANG said...

The Christian argument for the existance of God/"Intelligent Designer" got demolished in this debate. The defeated's argument, as ususal, amounted to the presupostitional notion that God exists, based on, of course, the Holy Bible....or better put, the "Holey" Bible. After all, he wasn't defending the "Christian law", or the "Christian knowledge"....no, he was defending the Christian "FAITH".

Anonymous said...

I am so tired of the stupid argument that human beings require a supernatural being to tell them right from wrong.

The guide to how we are to act is the knowledge of how we want to be treated. It is based on our empathy for our fellow human beings and life in general.

Dave8 said...

Nietzschean: "But I say the guide to how we are to act is what I want to do."

Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Nietzschean: "If you don't like that, that is tough shit."

True, as long as you don't infringe upon the rights of others.

Nietzschean: "Elimination of the weak and defective, the first principle of our philosophy, and we should help them to do it!"

God: "Creation of the weak and defective, the first principle of his philosophy, and we should praise him for it."

Christians: "Elimination of those who don't believe they are weak and defective (sinners), the first principle of their philosophy, and their (personal) god is on their side."

SpaceMonk said...

"Nietzschean: "Elimination of the weak and defective, the first principle of our philosophy, and we should help them to do it!" "

Wouldn't it be better to eliminate the strong and effective, seeing as they are a greater rival, and so more of a threat to stopping one from doing what they want to do?

xrayman said...

Wow that was painful to sit through after a while, but I listened to all 1 hour and 42 minutes. The Theologian did not make one good point. He just went bla bla bla bla bla and said absolutely nothing to prove his points. On the other hand the Athesit just kicked ass. He was the only person who made any sense what so ever, and he was clear and concice in making his points. I am never going to get the hour and 42 minutes of my life back, but I did need to sit though that to see how totally full of shit a Christain with a doctoral degree can be.

Anonymous said...

what a joke.... please... you are you blind... your lawyer sounded like a little girl on a playground who didnt get picked for kickball... grow up... check your mind and repent... and please tell me you have someone who lives close to chicago... cause i would love to debate you and your pals...

boomSLANG said...

Self-assured anony said: "check your mind and repent...and please tell me you have someone who lives close to chicago... cause i would love to debate you and your pals..."

"Repent"--

Dear Lord, our Omniscient Father in Heaven, please forgive me for turning out precisely as you knew I would. I know I will not see the Truth until... well, until you LET me see it, since I am merely an unworthy puppet in your Divine plan. I promise I will try harder to hate my Mother, Father, and all those who care about me, just like you ask of me in your Word. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.

twincats said...

Okay, I tried twice and only got through the first hour.

The problems for me were: 1) The Christian aplolgist was, in fact, a practiced sermonizer (having listened to many a sermon at many a church, I readily recognize the cadences, infections, etc.) Not that his technique lent anything to his argumnents, but he was easier to listen to. 2) The atheist was not, in all honesty, a good speaker. He was, for all his good arguments, too rushed in his delivery and sounded too much like he was reading and not speaking extemporaneously.

But, then, I am a more visual person and I probably would have gotten through a transcript just fine.

Anonymous said...

This was a very good debate. Both sides of the arguments were respectfully presented. Yet outcome of the debate, with respect to the outlined premises and their logical ramifications, lay on the side of Dr. William Lane Craig. With the respective cosmological and contingency arguments posed by Dr. Craig, the law of causality, with respect to the universe, and the reason for this cause (the universe) were grounded based upon empirical scientific and philosophical respective evidences, and thus sufficient reason for the existence of God was demonstrated. With this framework, Dr. Craig went on to support the historicity of Jesus Christ's burial and resurrection based on the general acceptance among the majority of New Testament scholars on the issue as well with those of the recorded biblical post-resurrection appearances of Jesus and the confidence of Jesus' disciples who widely proclaimed such information even if it resulted in persecution and death. Thus, the message of Jesus as being the Lord Himself can be accepted logically, and hence, the message of Christianity. Furthermore, since the existence of God was demonstrated, the supernatural raising of Jesus Christ's dead body is logically approachable. With this, Dr. Craig also demonstrated that Christian morality and ethics have logical and factual basis. For any counter worldview to have a chance at standing against such notions, at least one of the basic premises aforementioned by Dr. Craig have to be falsified and replaced with more reliable data. Unfortunately,
Eddie Tabash failed to do so in his counter argument and instead chose to refute the arguments based on several "what if..." premises that have no ground in reality. Additionally, Eddie Tabash did not provide any reasonable framework for his listeners to evince any credibility in atheistic secular humanism as a reasonable foundation to which moral values and ethics can stand. And his attacks on Christian Biblical texts were shown to be taken out of context by Dr. Craig and therefore invalid. Of course, the listener who has not come into the debate with an open mind, but rather with negative preconceived notions about Christianity, will not have noticed such innuendos, and would consequentially only naturally have sided with Eddie Tabash. In any given situation, a “leap of faith”, so to speak, is naturally required for one to accept various things as truths, based upon the factual evidences, which are in Christianities case, provided in Dr. Craig’s arguments. Coupled with other arguments such as Michael Behe’s coined “Intelligent Design” argument and the anthropic principle, the existence of God is unavoidable as an inescapable Truth. Investigate the matter further…it is the scientific and logical thing to do…then believe whatever you want, but at least give a countering view the chance to flex your mind (this is a nice website if any are interested www.veritas.org)

boomSLANG said...
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boomSLANG said...

My, oh my...the ostentatious matter-of-fact jargon sounds remotely familiar...... Steven? LMAO!

The "cosmological argument" for God's existance. It is presuppositional, and circular, to boot. If "God" caused the universe, then what caused "God"? Notwithstanding, even if some disembodied "mind" exists and arbitrarily decided to "create" 125 billion gallaxies with man at the center of it all, where is the factual non-circumstancial evidence that this "entity" = biblegod? And please don't waste our time wielding the bible as "evidence". Seriously....don't do it, unless you are prepared to justify/defend every single thing that defies science..i.e..talking vegetation, firmaments, man camping out inside whales...and shit-loads more inconsistancies and contradictions.

The Anthropic principle. It is the notion that, what?...that the universe is "finely tuned" toward human life? If God is omnipotent, "it" could create human life in parts of the universe that ARE NOT conducive...i.e..."finely tuned" for human life. Hell, we could live inside the frickin' sun, for that matter....but yet, we die by the THOUSANDS annually from melanoma, and we are to believe that the sun's distance is "finely-tuned" specifically for "man"? Lizards and turtles don't get skin cancer, but yet, God's crowning creation, "man", does? Races of people who live closer to the equator have more melanin? Hmmmm...? All considered, I think there is more evidence that man adapted to the earth, than there is that the earth was "created" for man. For me, the Anthropic principle fails.

Thus, the message of Jesus as being the Lord Himself can be accepted logically, and hence, the message of Christianity.

First of all, "the message of Christianity" is "Turn...or burn". Period. Secondly, sure, Christianity "can be" accepted, but yet, it's not accepted as an objective universal "Truth", hence why there are hundreds of other religions, not to mention the non-religious. Why is that? "Gravity" is certainly accepted "logically", and universally. Why? Why?..?..because it is testable and falsifiable using the scientific method. You can't "see" gravity, but it's properties/effects are available to every one of us, regardless of what your geological location is. On the other hand, the supernatural claims of Jesus Christ delineated in the pages of the "Holy bible" are NOT testable or falsifiable, nor are they available to every person, geographically. All considered---- to conclude Christianity as an objective universal Truth is grasping at straws.

nemesis said...

Wow, there is terrible logic floating around in this place, but I guess that's what you get if God doesn't exist and you have to make up arbitrary laws of logic that are inductively based. Futhermore, the very induction (called science) to "prove" logic itself begs the question. Atheists, answer me this: how can rationality possibly fit into your worldview when every "rational" notion you come up with is reducible to nothing more than the irrational universe itself? That is what we call in logic (which I may use consistently with a Christian worldview) an absurdity.
You have to rip off goodness and evil too. Craig was only half right when he said that there is no evil if there is no God. I would contend for something different, which assumes the humanist definition of "good" and "bad." Even if there is "good" and "bad" it STILL doesn't matter if I kill people. All I've done then is something the majority of other people don't want me to do. But so what? Whats wrong with that? If (and again, this is only hypothetical, so I'm not a barbarian) it made really happy, then I just maximized my happiness. See how your standards are flimsy.

Here's another objection I want you guys to answer, which is a little different from the one two paragraphs above:
If there is no God, then all that exists is a "closed system" of being. Nothing may randomly enter this system, since this would affirm a transcendent "something," so all that exists is matter and the laws that govern the system. Therefore, the entire human is constructed by this system. The problem is, this includes the brain. We normally think that the brain can choose, of its own accord, between A and B, but in this situation, the human brain does not have the ability to chose one or the other, since this would be a trait "outside of the system." Remember, everything is coerced by this system since everything is governed by the system. Therefore, there is no choice on the part of the human (for this would escape the system to which people are confined). From no choice comes no morality (for this demands a reward/punishment system for people, which is irrational if they don't have choice in the first place). Your own philosophy shoots yourself in the foot, which is why I love the long-standing statement that still stands true:

"The fool hath said in his heart 'there is no God'."
-God

.:webmaster:. said...

"The fool hath said in his heart 'there is no God'."
-God


You don't mean to say that an extra-dimensional entity penned those words, do you?

NEWSFLASH: The Bible was written by people -- ignorant, sheep chasing, Bronze Age people.

As far as all the rest of your inane blather: Do you honestly believe that without your god belief you are going to go out and rape, murder, steal and destroy?

What are you, a psychopath that will only behave socially with the threat of everlasting torture by a sadistic super-dude?

Your analysis of human nature is stilted, simplistic, and inaccurate. You are ignoring the basic reality that we humans are social creatures, dependent on each other to survive, as well as our natural instinct to live. The animal kingdom worships no god, yet each species tends to find a way to not destroy themselves. Acting like an insane anarchist in any species is likely to greatly limit your ability to survive with your fellow creatures, not to mention mate and produce offspring. In other words, the "hypothetical" madman you are describing will have considerably limited opportunity to pass on his or her genes.

Our mutual cooperative mindset is a survival function of evolution. That's fairly obvious. The mindset of a rabid fundamentalist is to either kill the infidels, or celebrate their eventual torment in your loving God's inferno.

In the final analysis, Christianity is filled with hatred for humanity.

.:webmaster:. said...

Oh, and BTW, in Calvinistic Christianity (the Christianity of all the Reformers as well as old Augustine) is that NO ONE has free will. Freewillism, (Pelagianism and Arminianism) were considered heresies by ALL the reformers. Your talk of free will in Christianity would have gotten you burned at the stake just a few centuries ago by both Protestants and Baptists!

Perhaps you haven't studied up enough on how much your religion has changed over the last 2,000 years.

Anonymous said...

Loved the debate. Listening carefully to the two sides only served to reinforce how strong the arguments are for Christianity. Thank you for making this debate available. As a doctor in philosophy, I was amazed at the solid deductive arguments for Christianity and the weak flimsy, almost embarrassing arguments for atheism. The faith of my students has been strengthened as a result of this debate. Many thanks indeed.

Anonymous said...

My Christianity is definitely not filled with hatred.....my Church and Christian friends do much to help people in need.................