Is God’s Existence Obvious to Everyone?

(Redated post originally published on 26 October 2011)As a 'friendly atheist,' I believe that theists can be fully rational in believing that God exists. I know that some theists are 'unfriendly theists' in the sense that they believe(1) The existence of God is obvious to everyone.But why believe (1) is true? I'm aware that Romans 2 is often quoted in this context. Notice, however, that there is no logical contradiction between believing(2) There is a supernatural creator of the … [Read more...]

Hostility of the Universe to Life: Understated Evidence about Cosmic Fine-Tuning?

(Redated post originally dated 22 January 2013)I've blogged before about the fallacy of understated evidence. Here I want to explore further how it applies to fine-tuning arguments.Let us define the "general fact of cosmic 'fine-tuning'" as follows. FT: some universe or other has the initial conditions, laws, and constants which make the existence of complex intelligent life of some sort possible. Even if we assume that so-called cosmic "fine-tuning" is evidence favoring theism over … [Read more...]

Paul Draper, the Fallacy of Understated Evidence, Theism, and Naturalism

(Redated post originally published on 23 November 2011)Paul Draper has usefully identified a fallacy of inductive reasoning he calls the "fallacy of understated evidence." According to Draper, in the context of arguments for theism and against naturalism, proponents of a theistic argument are guilty of this fallacy if they "successfully identify some general fact F about a topic X that is antecedently more likely on theism than on naturalism, but ignore other more specific facts about X, … [Read more...]

Here’s One Way to Resist Naturalistic Arguments: Lack Belief that Matter Exists!

A Christian apologist writing under the pseudonym 'InvestigativeApologetics' stated the usual objection to atheism, namely, that it's impossible to prove or give evidence for the non-existence of God. The fact is that atheists who yell that “there is no evidence for God (or Christianity)” are protesting too much, so to speak, and they are, in fact, projecting the weakness of atheism onto theism. For truth be told, it is atheism, at least when in its wide and positive sense, that is the view for … [Read more...]

Are Pain and Suffering the Only Evidence for Atheism?

Frank Turek is a Christian apologist, debater, and author or co-author of several books, including I Don't Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist (see my rebuttal here). He recently tweeted the following:Truth? #truth #apologetics — Frank Turek (@Frank_Turek) February 11, 2016 Make sure you click on the link that begins with "" to see the infographic.Such a tweet is simply embarrassing. For Turek (and for his source, Dennis P … [Read more...]

Weighing Theistic Evidence Against Naturalistic Evidence

In the next-to-last paragraph of his book, C.S. Lewis' Dangerous Idea: In Defense of the Argument from Reason, Victor Reppert makes a very interesting statement: However, I contend that the arguments from reason do provide some substantial reasons for preferring theism to naturalism. The "problem of reason" is a huge problem for reason, as serious or, I would say, more serious, than the problem of evil is for theists. (emphasis mine) I think this is a very interesting statement for two r … [Read more...]

Is There a Problem of Evil for Atheism?

In response to various arguments from evil for atheism, some theists attempt to turn the tables on atheists and argue that evil is at least as much of a problem for atheism as it is for theism. I've argued repeatedly that this response completely misses the point that the problem of evil can be understood as a reductio against theism (see, for example, here). And what has the response of those theists been? Silence. Or, at the very least, if they have responded, I'm unaware of it. (Please feel … [Read more...]

Does God Exist? Part 2

Here is a third option for breaking down the question "Does God exist?" (click on the image below to get a clearer view of the chart):         This is a variation on Option 2 (see the previous post in this series).In this analysis I stick with the process of simply adding on divine attributes to the creator in order to build up to the full traditional concept of God, or something close to the full … [Read more...]