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Summary in 400 words or less:
Atheism is the denial of existence of God. There is mounting scientific evidence for the presence of God from astronomy and biology, so much so that the once staunch atheist philosopher Anthony Flew became a deist. The strongest objection against theism is the problem of Evil. Evil, according to atheism, contradicts a good and loving God, but this objection has been answered adequately by many theists. The intellectual response to this objection is this: Evil assumes an objective moral standard required to distinguish between good and evil. A moral standard that actually exists would be perfectly good–would be God. Therefore, by affirming evil, atheism affirms God, and thus self-destructs. Atheists has also been the cause of some of the largest genocides in history, like the holocaust. Since atheism does not provide a moral standard which is absolute, objective, and binding; and also denies accountability to the moral standard (God), it opens up the way for heinous acts which could be committed without a shred of remorse. Atheism assumes the reality of logic and the universe, which require a necessary being to ground them, therefore an atheist has to assume God to disprove God using reason and science.
Agnosticism can suspend or be undecided about the acceptance or rejection of belief in God, but it can also be a belief which claims it is impossible to know whether or not God exists. The claim that one cannot know anything about God, or that God has not revealed himself, is also a claim to knowledge about God, and therefore self-contradicts.
Skepticism is a system of doubting every claim to knowledge and certainty, but a true skeptic should doubt his doubts. For many skeptics, truth claims are really just opinions–but they really think this is true, not just their opinion, so it self-destructs. The paradox of skepticism is this: ‘How do I know that I cannot know, if I cannot know whether I know?’ –or– “How can I know that I really didn’t know what I thought I knew, if I don’t at least know what I *do* know?” Skepticism, agnosticism and atheism go hand-in-hand and are self-contradictory systems.
Scripture for YouVersion: Psalm 14:1, 53:1
Short audio/video: Seekers, Skeptics and Scoffers 1 by Mark McGee
Three questions (one fill-in-the-blank, one multiple choice, one discussion question):
1. The paradox of skepticism is this: ‘How do I know that I _____ know, if I ____ know whether I know?’
2. The strongest objection of atheism to the biblical God is the problem of _____.
3. Discuss the self-contradictory claims of atheism, agnosticism and skepticism.
References for further reading:
‘Agnosticism.’ Anthony Thieselton, A Concise Encyclopaedia of Philosophy of Religion.
‘Is Dogmatic Agnosticism Logically Self-Defeating?’ Kenneth R. Samples, Reasons to Believe. http://www.reasons.org/articles/is-dogmatic-agnosticism-logically-self-defeating
Collaborators: Samuel Inbaraja, Maryann Spikes
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