Thursday, July 01, 2010

Is God Arrogant and Egotistical? MP3 by Paul Copan

Truthbomb Apologetics recently featured this audio by Christian philosopher Paul Copan addressing the issue: Is God Arrogant & Egotistical? Originally delivered at Columbia International University, this audio is from their chapel podcasts feed.

Full MP3 Audio here. (40 min)

Listen.

More good stuff from Paul Copan here.

29 comments :

Davitor said...

I sympathise with the speaker and his conceptual understanding of a God that is separate from creation, but it still does not solve the logical problem of evil, hence of a God that seem arrogant and egotistical. For this very reason I am a pantheist for there is no other logical approach that I find that can solve this issue of evil, and therefore a superior and narcissistic God.

Seth said...

I'll give this a listen. Paul Copan usually has good answers for tough questions.

Paul said...

Davitor,

How does Pantheism solve the logical problem of evil?(Which is widely thought to of been solved by Alvin Plantinga btw)

Paul

Davitor said...

Let just put it simply if Plantinga had solved this logical problem of evil we would not be discussing this on any Christian forum.

The reason why Pantheism easily solves this logical problem of evil is that the only person you can blame for the continuation of evil, is yourself.

Chad said...

Davitor,

I fail to see how you answered Paul's question. You merely identified a source [or the source from your perspective] of evil; however, how does Pantheism "solve this issue of evil?"

Identifying the source of the problem doesn't solve the problem.

Even if I concede that mankind (i.e. self) is the cause of all evil, how does that solve the problem?

Thank you

Davitor said...

I had a dream in which I had been killed for no cause, then i woke up. Was their any evil done in my dream?

Now think of the universe as God's dream. Are you trying to wake up God to tell him of your dream.

Chad said...

Davitor,

Thank you for the reply. So, if I understand what you are saying correctly, on your worldview evil is simply illusory, not a reality. Is that correct?

Thank you

Davitor said...

It’s as real as the non-locality of an atom, the most basic element which makes up the whole universe.

Russell said...

Hi Davitor,

It seems like you are side stepping the question. Correct me if I am wrong, but doesn't Pantheism denote an impersonal God? If so, how do you explain morality without a personal creator?

pds said...

Davitor,

I find it very difficult to understand your position. You havn't shown that Pantheism solves this problem, just asserted that it has. I have no idea what some strange statments about dream and atoms has to do with Pantheism and Evil. You have to make clear statements or we can't engage with you.

Paul

Chad said...

Paul,

Well put and I concur! For a moment, I thought it was just me!

Godspeed

Davitor said...

Russel, not at all, what I’m implying that all encompasses God including what you conceptualized as evil. Impersonal in the sense that God is separate from my persona where you can say oh God is angry at me today as suppose being loving tomorrow.
But to really understand pantheism it implies that there is no separate between you and God including every thought you have. Can anything be more personal than that?
Paul, there was a time in our biblical history where everyone would agree that disobeying the Sabbath was evil and that they can be put to death for it. Paul, are you going to stone someone, or are you going to tell the woman in your church to put a veil over their heads? If not, then please consider the inconsistent logical problem this implies.

Russell said...

Davitor,

Above you mention the problem of evil. From your description of Pantheism, I fail to see how a pantheist can make a claim about evil. How do you discern what is and is not evil if you are part of God?

Davitor said...

Russell, what I’m saying is that I cannot make that ultimate final distinction of what I perceive as good is Good and what perceive as evil is Evil for when I make that choice I am limited by it. Just as you Christianity you make that ultimate final distinction of God’s choice as evil even when its perceived as Evil.
You see ultimately Russell, you will never be able to solve any problem with the same mind that is creating the problem.

Davitor said...

Russell, what I’m saying is that I cannot make that ultimate final distinction of what I perceive as good is Good and what perceive as evil is Evil for when I make that choice I am limited by it. Just as you Christianity you cannot make that ultimate final distinction of God’s choice as evil even when its perceived as Evil.
You see ultimately Russell, you will never be able to solve any problem with the same mind that is creating the problem.

Russell said...

Hi Davitor,
From the Christian view, God cannot commit evil. He is all good. The skeptic would see evil as a problem for the existence of God. However, If this person is going to deny God's existence based on evil, then they would also have to justify the idea of evil to begin with. This is why this does not present a threat to my faith. Who am I to question the actions of the God who gave me this life to begin with?

I am still confused by your original quote "For this very reason I am a pantheist for there is no other logical approach that I find that can solve this issue of evil". If there is no separation between you and God, then how do you decide what is and is not evil?

Davitor said...

Thank you, Russel

I already explain it. But it seem you do not follow so I will say in with a story. Judas act of betrayal was considered evil but if it were not for his evil act we would not have the crucifixion. So you can logically come to the conclusion that God needed an evil act of betrayal for salvation. Does God need evil? Most Christians come to conclusion that the answer is yes, and that creates the logical problem. So I say why call the betrayal act evil, why call it good? When you come to a conclusion of what is good is Good and what is evil is Evil, you are committing the same sin that started the hold problem in the beginning.

So to answer your question again I do not come to an absolute conclusion of what Evil is for I do not know what Good can come from it. And my only absolute conclusion is to not Judge.

pds said...

Davitor Said: "Paul, there was a time in our biblical history where everyone would agree that disobeying the Sabbath was evil and that they can be put to death for it. Paul, are you going to stone someone, or are you going to tell the woman in your church to put a veil over their heads?"

We don't do it because we use a interpretative methodology to determine what is cultural and what is absolute. No inconsistancy sorry.

You can't live without making judgements in life sorry.

Davitor said...

Yes Paul, and i can allow you to continue in your endless judgements, and never thinks of it as wrong till the end of time, then I can realize what the true meaning of hell is.

Russell said...

Hi Davitor,

I don't know of a lot of Christians who would say that God needs evil. If you read the Bible, it's clear that man fell and not God. God does not desire us to be evil, but it has to be a possibility if we are to have free will. By the same logic you used, you could say that God needed Eve to seccumb to temptation in order for us to fall, which completely contradicts His hope for us in the first place. It is not Gods will for any of us, including Judas, to commit evil. However, because of his omniscience, he is able to know how his creation will play out. I don't see a point in pondering "What if" scenarios with an omniscient being.

I find it hard to believe that you don't have standards for what is and is not evil. If I'm following you correctly, then you would not consider killing of innocent life evil, correct?

Also, I don't think you could possibly lead a life without making judgments. The fact that you are debating with Paul and myself over pantheism and Christianity leads me to believe that you hold certain judgments about our beliefs. If not, why engage with us to begin with?

Davitor said...

Dear Russell,

Let me explain again with another story, let’s say you came to my house to watch the pre-recorded soccer game between Spain the Netherlands. When I started to play the tape I would tell told you the final score where Spain beats Netherland by the score of 2 to 1. As we are watching the game I would tell you to please cheer for Spain for they need all support in your cheering to win. If you who have a limited mind can question my request how much more the mind of God?

And yes Russell, I am making a choice in my decision to discuss with you and Paul my perceptions, and every choice I make will yield its fruit in accordance. May your choices be as fruitful.

Paul said...

Davitor,

Your question makes no sense to me. What exactly are you trying to say? That we can question your opinions?

What do you measure your fruitfulness against?

Davitor said...

I measure my fruitfulness in the joy it brings to all.

Paul said...

Hi Davitor,

If "joy to all" is your objective then joy is "Good" and sadness is "Evil". You simply can't escape making moral judgements even though your world view tells you that moral judgements are wrong(which is a moral judgement in itself). Christians have a reason for believing in objective moral standards like "joy is good" but you have yet to tell us what your reason is.

Estella said...

Paul joy may not always be good for if i go to a funeral and proclaim "joy is always good" i would probably be asked to leave. I can't escape my mind making judgments but does that mean that my judgments are true. Just as my mind tries to judge an end does that mean an end is true?

Russell said...

Estella,

If you were to proclaim "joy is always good" at a funeral, the people would not ask you to leave because joy is not good. There is a time and place for joy and pain (Ecclesiastes 3).

As for your question, I think that depends on what you base your morality on. There must be a set of moral principles to follow if we are going to make judgments about something or someone.

Paul said...

Hi Estella,

No expressions of joy arn't always good, this is correct. That wasn't my point, however. My point is that making judgments is an essential part of living. Thats not to say that every judgment we make is correct; only God is correct in every judgment. We try to be right at least some of the time with the help of the Bible, reason and logic etc...

Davitor said...

Paul and Russell the more you are attached to a verbal or mental judgment to things, to people, to situations, the more suffering and dead you become to the miracle of life that is continuously unfolding around you in the present moment. In the stillness of presence, without the mind chatter you can sense the formless essence in yourself and in all things and in a sense be born again to see the world with no judgment like a child. I tell you with certainty if you do not see the world in this way you will never end your suffering and see the dominion of God in all reality.

Russell said...

Davitor,

Your comment in the Mark Slick interview is full of judgments about Christians. I have no idea what your response has to do with the questions Paul and I asked you. Where are you getting a basis for good and evil. If you cannot provide a straight answer to this, then I am not sure where this conversation is going.

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