The 6 Philosophical Christian Apologetics

Thanks to Wikipedia, there is a convenient list of the 6 philosophical Christian Apologetics. Let’s see if I can tear them down in less than 10 minutes.

1. Cosmological argument – Argues that the existence of the universe demonstrates that God exists. Various primary arguments from cosmology and the nature of causation are often offered to support the cosmological argument.

Despite the modern sounding name, this is probably the oldest argument.  Plato used a version of it, and it was made famous by Thomas Aquinas, in the 13th century.  You can see two problems here.  Plato was a not a Christian and this argument predates Christianity.  The second is, even if you can somehow posit a first mover, it would be infinitely more complex than a naturalistic explanation.  In addition, the ‘newer’ Kalam version of this apologetic STILL does not have a way to link this first mover to the god of their choice.

2. Teleological argument – Argues that there is a purposeful design in the world around us, and a design requires a designer. Cicero, William Paley, and Michael Behe use this argument as well as others.

This argument was always a weak one to me.  The world does not appear to be designed, or if it is, not very well.  From what we now know about evolution by means of natural selection, and the fossil record, this argument is next to useless.

3.  Ontological argument – Argues that the very concept of God demands that there is an actual existent God.

Silliest of the arguments, because you can think of a maximally great entity, it must exist.  This argument really falls apart if you replace god with demon.  It works equally well, perhaps even better, arguing an infinitely evil entity exists.  Even when new, this argument never gained much traction.

4.  Moral Argument – Argues that there are objectively valid moral values, and therefore, there must be an absolute from which they are derived.

Simple, there are no objective moral values, and cultures in isolation can have very different values.  Morals are a result of culture and genetic predisposition and are not absolute.

5.  Transcendental Argument – Argues that all our abilities to think and reason require the existence of God.

I really don’t get this one, to be honest.  Animals can think, machines can reason.  If a machine can reason, there is a god?  It really makes no sense and have not really read a good explanation over several apologetics books I have read.

6.  Presuppositional Arguments – Argues that the basic beliefs of theists and nontheists require God as a necessary precondition.

This is the most circular argument and a subset of Transcendental Argument, which I don’t get. The argument boils down to you need to know everything, or know someone who knows everything, to know anything.  This is a stupid argument.  It is akin to saying you need to know the absolute temperatures to know any temperature.  We were able to measure temperature WAY before we knew what temperature was and what the limits are. I don’t know why you would need to know ALL of the members of a set to know ANY of the members of a set.  Another example is numbers.  They are a concept, but you do not need to know all real numbers to perform mathematics.  The last issue is, how do you know which god to choose?  Your Bible says it is true, but so does the Koran, Book of Mormon, i ching, 4 noble truths, eightfold path, Tao Te Ching, and the Egyptian Book of the Dead and many others.  In the end, the Bible is True, Because the Bible Says It’s True.

8 Questions No Atheist Can Answer!

I watched a few seconds of a Youtube video, rebutting 8 Questions No Atheist Can Answer!  So, I decided to stop and see how I would/could answer these 8 questions:

1. If morality isn’t objective, does that mean Hitler never did anything wrong? Are our actions just a consequence of nature?

Objectively wrong, no Hitler did not do anything objectively wrong.  To his point of view, what he did was moral and just.  Morality is subjective, and what he did was subjectively wrong to most people, but not all.  Our actions are a consequence of nature.

2. If you’re meaning to life is subjective and your sense of purpose in life is truly meaningless when you take into account how brief it is in the geologic time scale and how the universe will one day be destroyed, why do you try to hold others to your subjective moral standard? Why and HOW can you judge God?

I don’t hold others to my subjective moral standard, but as a society and as a species, it is in our best interest to develop a SUBJECTIVE moral code.  Knowing this is our only life make it imperative to not waste it being cruel to others.  I can’t judge god, god is an imaginary character.  It is like asking how I can judge Spiderman or the Hulk.  It is a nonsense question.

3. What proof do you have to say that God doesn’t exist? To prove that God doesn’t exist, you have to logically have a reason as to why the universe came into being out of an eternal realm of nothingness.

No, I do not have and have no obligation to disprove a god.  I am not the one making a positive claim.  However, the concept of an all powerful, infinite, all loving, but unchanging god, that is separate from time and space, but personal seems pretty self refuting.  The concept of eternal and nothingness is meaningless before time and space.

4. Where and why did the universe pop into existence out of the “Big Bang”? Where did the Multiverse pop out of? If there was no universe made out of space-time, does that mean it just popped out of an eternal realm of nothing?

This is just the second part of question 3, broken out.   The concept of “Where” is meaningless before space-time.  Why? is an odd question.  Does the sun need a reason to shine?  Apply the same to Multiverse.  Yes, our present universe can just pop out of nothing, it is called quantum fluctuations.  Happens all the time.

5. Where did life come from and how? How do you explain the fine-tuning of the universe? That means that there are hundreds of thousands of conditions that needed to meet so that our universe could support life or even exist.

I am not a biologist that studies abiogenesis and I suspect you aren’t either, but let me muddle through this disjointed question. Life arose over 3.5 billion year ago, there are many theories of the origin.  I personally believe it began either in mud, or around hydrothermal vents.  I am not a physicist, but the fine tuning argument is poorly understood.  Fine tuning is a Descriptive, not Prescriptive values.  They are descriptions of what the values are.  There are not hundreds of thousands of values.  The entire universe is bounded by:  Electromagnetism, Gravity, Strong Nuclear Force, and the Weak Nuclear Force.  I only count 4 fundamental forces.  Finally, life began and evolved to work within these limits, no the other way around.

6. Why did the first organism need to consume to survive if it came into existence out of star dust? What drove it to survive?

It did not pop into existence in star dust.  Life almost certainly began in the vast oceans, where there was tremendous amounts of chemical energy.  When that chemical energy ran out, photosynthesis evolved to harness the sun.  The first life on earth was almost certainly RNA based.  It had no drive to survive, like a falling object has no desire to fall, it just does.

7. Where did DNA come from and how did something so complicated randomly come into existence? It is said that one single DNA can hold the equivalent to 4,500 books of information.

Before DNA was RNA, which is derived from Amino Acids. Amino acids are VERY common, and can even be found in the near vacuum of space.  The early oceans were a literal soup of amino acids.  Take amino acids, add energy and time and you will get RNA.  Make enough RNA and there will be self replicating RNA.  Put self replicating RNA in a phospholipid membrane, and you have a simple cell.  The second part is a statement referring to a metaphor.  DNA is not a book.

8. What evidence is there for the changing of kinds? We all know that there are thousands of species of the same kind of animal, like there are several different kinds of dogs. But there in nothing in the record of evolution that proves that one kind of animal, like a fish, can evolve into a human. Cats are always cat and humanoids are always humanoids. Some people say that because we all share DNA, that we are therefore all related. However, DNA and matter can merely be the mechanism God used to create all animals with and he made each slightly different.

Kinds is a meaningless term.  There are entire museums and warehouses FULL of transitional fossils.  I don’t understand the ‘thousands of species of the same kind of animal’.  A species is a very specific definition.  It is members of a population that can mate and produce viable offspring.  The evolution of humans is intently researched and beyond the scope of this humble blog post.  Cats are not always cats and humanoids are not human.  You could not mate with an homo habilis, erectus, etc.  Maybe, maybe with a Heidelbergensis, but I doubt it.  Where are all these other humanoids?  They are all extinct.  We are all related, humans, dogs, whales, potatoes, crabs, grass…we all share DNA.  What’s the point?  Finally, we have a cop out here with guided evolution.  Why add god when natural selection is the simpler answer?

Finding Hell

Some Christian apologists describe hell as a separation from god, not the fiery pit we all think of.  I don’t know how separation from a god you don’t think exists is hell, but I got me wondering:  How is hell described in the Bible?

With the magic of Xiphos and the search feature, lets find every reference to hell in the Modern King James Version of the Bible:

Deuteronomy  32:22  For a fire is kindled in My anger, and shall burn to the lowest hell, and shall consume the earth with its increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains.

Sounds pretty hot and fiery to me.

II Samuel 22:6 When the waves of death encircled me, the floods of ungodly men made me afraid.  The sorrows of hell hemmed me in. The snares of death went in front of me.

Not much here to go off of.

Job 11:8  Can you perfectly find out the Almighty?  Heights of the heavens! What can you do?It is deeper than hell, what can you know?  The measure of it is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea.

Hell is described as a physical place, a very deep place.

Job 26:6  Hell is naked before Him, and the Pit has no covering.

Hell is a pit.

Psalms 9:17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, all the nations that forget God.

Still sounds like hell is a physical place, and the nations have already forgotten god.

Psalms 16:10  My flesh also shall rest in hope;  For You will not leave My soul in hell; You will not allow Your Holy One to see corruption.

First mention of a soul in hell.

Psalms 18:5  The sorrows of death hemmed me in, and the floods of ungodly men made me afraid.  The sorrows of hell surrounded me; the snares of death confronted me.  

First indication that hell is being compared to ungodly men.

Psalms 55:15  Let desolation take hold on them, and let them go down alive into hell; for evils are among them in their dwellings.

Go alive into hell.  Hell is a physical place.

Psalms 86:13  For great is Your mercy toward me; and You have delivered my soul from the lowest hell. 

Hell still a physical place.  Rephrased Psalms 16:10.

Psalms 116:3 The sorrows of death hemmed me in, and the pains of hell took hold on me; I found trouble and sorrow.

Same as Psalms 18:5 without the ungodly men.  Still sounds like physical place.

Proverbs 5:5  Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell,  lest you should meditate on the path of life, her tracks are movable; you cannot know them.

Going down to a hell.  Still physical sounding.

Proverbs 7:27  Her house is the way to hell, going down to the rooms of death.

Hell is still a place.

Proverbs 9:18  But he does not know that the dead are there; her guests are in the depths of hell. 

Depths of hell.  Sounds pretty physical to me.

Proverbs 15:11    Hell and destruction are before the LORD; even more the hearts of the sons of men? 

Really sounds like god made hell.

Proverbs 15:24    The way of life is above to the wise, so that he may turn away from hell below. 

Hell is below, physically below.

Proverbs 23:14  Do not withhold correction from a boy, for if you beat him with the rod, he will not die.  You shall beat him with the rod, and shall deliver his soul from hell.  

Child abuse, beating with a rod, and soul that goes to hell.  No mention of separation from god here.

Proverbs 27:20  Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied.

Hell is a place that is never full.

Isaiah 5:14  So hell has enlarged itself, and opened its mouth without measure; and their glory, and their multitude, and their pride, and he who rejoices in her, shall go down into it.

Hell is a place, that has a mouth that can be infinite.

Isaiah 14:9  Hell from below is moved for you, to meet you at your coming. It stirs up the dead for you, all the he-goats of the earth. It has raised from their thrones all the kings of the nations.

Hell is still a physical place.

Isaiah 14:15    I will go up above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High.  Yet you shall be brought down to hell, to the sides of the Pit.

Down to hell, sides of the Pit.

Isaiah 28:15   Because you have said, We have made a covenant with death, and we have made a vision with hell; when the overwhelming rod shall pass through, it shall not come to us; for we have made lies our refuge, and we have hidden ourselves under falsehood,  therefore so says the Lord Jehovah, Behold, I place in Zion a Stone for a foundation, a tried Stone, a precious Cornerstone, a sure Foundation; he who believes shall not hurry.

Hell is still a place.

Isaiah 28:18  And your covenant with death shall be wiped out, and your vision with hell shall not stand; when the overwhelming rod shall pass through, then you shall be beaten down by it.

Still sounds like a place, beaten down by it.

Isaiah 57:9  And you went to the king with ointment, and increased your perfumes, and sent your messengers far off, and lowered yourself even to hell. 

Lowered to hell.

Ezekiel 31:16-17  I made the nations shake at the sound of his fall, when I cast him down to hell with those who go down in the Pit. And all the trees of Eden, the choice and best of Lebanon, all that drink water, shall be comforted in the lower parts of the earth.   They also went down into hell with him to those who are slain with the sword, even his arm, who lived under his shadow in the midst of the nations.

Hell is described as the Pit.  Down to hell.  Still no mention of separation from god.

Ezekiel 32:21  The strong among the mighty shall speak to him out of the midst of hell with those who help him. They have gone down, they lie uncircumcised, slain by the sword.

Back to hell.

Ezekiel 32:27  And they shall not lie with the mighty that are fallen of the uncircumcised, who have gone down to hell with their weapons of war. And they have put their swords under their heads, but their sins shall be on their bones, though they were the terror of the mighty in the land of the living.

Down to hell, with weapons of war.

Amos 9:2   If they dig into hell, there My hand shall take them. And if they go up to the heavens, I will bring them down from there.

You can dig to hell.

New Testament Hell:

Matthew 5:22  But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be liable to the judgment. And whoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be liable to the sanhedrin; but whoever shall say, Fool! shall be liable to be thrown into the fire of hell. 

Thrown into the fire of hell.

Matthew 5:29   And if your right eye offends you, pluck it out and throw it from you. For it is profitable for you that one of your members should perish, and not that your whole body should be thrown into hell. 

Whole body thrown into hell, and pluck your own eye out?  Really?

Matthew 5:30  And if your right hand offends you, cut it off and throw it from you. For it is profitable for you that one of your members should perish, and not that your whole body should be thrown into hell.

Hand instead of eye this time.

Matthew 10:28  And do not fear those who kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul. But rather fear Him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

This is an interesting one, seems to imply the soul can be destroyed in hell.  Annihilation?

Matthew 11:23  And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to the heaven, shall be brought down to hell. For if the mighty works which have been done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.

Up to heaven, down to hell.  No idea what the rest means.

Matthew 16:18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Gates of Hell.  Again, physical place.

Matthew 18:9  And if your eye offends you, pluck it out and throw it from you. It is better for you to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into the hell of fire.

Same exact thing as Matthew 5:29.  Why?  Hell of fire.

Matthew 23:15  Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you compass sea and the dry land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, you make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

Don’t know.

Matthew 23:33   Serpents! Offspring of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?

Hell has snakes.

Mark 9:43  And if your hand offends you, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed than to have two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched.

Really, again?  However, this add a fire that never shall be quenched.

Mark 9:45-47   And if your foot offends you, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life lame than to have two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched  where their worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched.  And if your eye offends you, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes to be cast into hell fire  where their worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched.

Foot this time, and back to eyes and a fire that can’t be quenched.

Luke 10:15   And you, Capernaum, which has been lifted up to Heaven, you shall be thrust down into hell.

Didn’t we read this before?  Still down to hell.

Luke 12:5  But I will warn you of whom you shall fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yea, I say to you, fear Him.

This is an interesting one, is appears god casts you to hell.  It is his choice.

Luke 16:23  And in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

Hell is a place, being in torment.  Not sure what Abraham holding Lazarus in his bosom means.

James 3:6  And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. So the tongue is set among our members, spotting all the body and inflaming the course of nature, and being inflamed by hell.

Yep, more fiery hell.

Revelation 1:18  Do not fear, I am the First and the Last,  and the Living One, and I became dead, and behold, I am alive for ever and ever, Amen. And I have the keys of hell and of death.

Again, god is the one who is in charge of death and hell.

Revelation 6:8  And I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him sitting on it was Death, and Hell followed with him. And authority was given to them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with the sword and with hunger and with death and by the beasts of the earth.

This time Hell is used as a proper name.  Are Death and Hell one in the same?  Not sure.

Revelation 20:13  And the sea gave up the dead in it. And death and hell delivered up the dead in them. And each one of them was judged according to their works.

Sounds like in this case hell is just the ground.  Interestingly, it does appear that we are judged by our works.  Hmmm.

Revelation 201:14   And death and hell were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death. And if anyone was not found having been written in the Book of Life, he was cast into the Lake of Fire.

Well, there you have it.  Lake of Fire.

This was every reference I could find in the Bible to hell.  As with a lot of the Bible, there are repeats.  I don’t see separation from god in here as an alternative to an unquenchable flame and a Lake of Fire and torment.  Hell pretty much meets up with the classic understanding of hell.  A fiery place, full of torment.  Any apologists out there who want to point out the alternative view?  I quoted EVERY Bible verse.  I did not omit one jot or tiddle.

I did look online for some reference to separation from god, and found this:

II Thessalonians  For this is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God for which you also suffer,  since it is a righteous thing with God to repay tribulation to those who trouble you,  and to give rest with us to you who are troubled, at the revealing of the Lord Jesus from Heaven with the angels of His power,  in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God and who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ,  who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,  when He shall come to be glorified in His saints and to be admired in all those who believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that Day.

In flaming fire…punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord…  Well.  I am more concerned with fire and destruction than separation from the presence of the Lord.  Seems coincidental, not the main focus.

On the theological side, I have read both arguments, and, to be honest, I have to agree with the old fire and brimstone idea of hell.  If you actually read the Bible, that is clearly what it is describing.   I could fine no evidence otherwise.

 

Shifting the burden of proof and a definition

Came across a gem of a website, Stand To Reason

To summarize, it is attempting to shift the burden of proof by making non Christians define what god they don’t believe in.

The only useful thing on the page was a definition of what god the author believes in:

For instance, the God of the Bible is an uncreated, infinite, eternal, and metaphysically necessary Being. Furthermore, He is described as all-powerful, all-knowing, all-good, and everywhere present.

So, yes, indeed, I do not believe in this god, or even think a god like this is possible.  Let us break down the properties here:

  • Uncreated : so the God of the Bible is uncreated, but how is this even possible?  Uncreated, to me, is the same as non existent, it is a useless concept.
  • Infinite: Again, infinity is just a concept, like numbers.  The concept of infinite is something a thinking mind can create and does not exist in the real universe.
  • Eternal:  The universe may be eternal (oscillating, or cyclical, or something we can not conceive, but nothing is eternal).  The current version of this universe, is not eternal, and has a finite beginning.
  • Metaphysically necessary being:  This is just another definition of god, so kind of an odd term to use.  Circular definition.
  • All-powerful: If you are infinite, you will also be all powerful.  Infinite is a concept, not a real thing.
  • All-knowing: If you are infinite, you will also be all knowing.  Infinite is a concept, not a real thing.
  • All-good:  Natural evil anyone?  Holoprosencephaly.  Do a google image search on that term and tell me god is all good.
  • Everywhere present:  Again, if you are infinite, you will be a everywhere.  Infinite is a concept, not a real thing.

This definition of god is describing an entirely imaginary concept.  If god is all good, whence comes evil?  If god is all knowing and ever present, is there no such thing as free will?  Infinity is a concept, like numbers.  0, +/- infinity are all just concepts of thinking minds, and I don’t think apologists know this.  There is one last point I want to make:  How can I have a personal, infinite god in a finite universe?

 

 

 

14 Evidences for resurrection of Jesus

Apparently, There are 14 evidences for the resurrection of Jesus.  An admission of bias here, I am a mythicist, I see no evidence Jesus ever existed, and I believe he is a fictional character, like Sherlock Holmes or Harry Potter.

So, here are my comments on the evidences:
14 EVIDENCES

  1. JESUS’ EXISTENCE. That Jesus was a historical individual is granted by virtually all historians and is supported by ancient Christian, Jewish, and pagan sources. Yet modern skeptics often feel that their best strategy for denying the evidence of his resurrection is to deny that he even existed.  This statement has two issues, first, it is an argument from authority.  The second is there is no contemporary evidence he existed.  There are no first hand accounts, he left no writings, not even a description of his appearance.  What was written about him was written 40 to 120 years after he was supposed to exist.  In addition, what was written has contradictory and nonsensical statements.  His genealogies don’t match, there was no census, and Herod was dead before he was supposed  to be born.  Even how the crucifixion is described is incorrect.
  2. JESUS’ DEATH. The most popular counter to the Resurrection in non-Christian and heretical beliefs is to deny that Jesus died on the cross (e.g., this is the position of Islam). However, historians regard the death of Jesus by crucifixion as ordered by Pontius Pilate to be as historically certain as any other fact of antiquity.  Again, another argument from authority.  The Pontius Pilate was a real person, but again, the description of the crucifixion was not accurate, nor are the dates and locations. 
  3. CRUCIFIED MESSIAH. Crucifixion was a horrible, shameful way to die, so much so that it would never have occurred to anyone in the first century to invent a story about a crucified man as the divine Savior and King of the world. Something extreme and dramatic must have happened to lead people to accept such an idea—something like his rising from the dead.  If you want a martyr, is there a better way to die than a horrible death?  This statement makes no sense.  
  4. JOSEPH’S TOMB. All four Gospels agree that Jesus’ body had been buried in the rock tomb owned by Joseph of Arimathea, a member of the Jewish high council (the Sanhedrin). This is an unlikely Christian fiction, because Christians blamed the Sanhedrin for their role in having Jesus executed.  All of the gospels were written decades or over a century after the event.  Someone who was crucified would’ve taken days to die, and not given a proper burial.  
  5. WOMEN WITNESSES. The four Gospels all agree that the first persons to find the tomb empty were Jewish women, including Mary Magdalene. It is very unlikely that anyone would make up such a story, since women’s testimony was devalued compared to men’s and since Mary Magdalene was known as a formerly demon-possessed woman. If the empty tomb story were fiction, one would expect that Joseph of Arimathea, already identified as the tomb’s owner and a respected male leader, would be credited with the discovery.  I have no idea why women witnesses is a big deal.  Again, the accounts are written decades later AND have contradictions.  
  6. ANCIENT THEORIES. The earliest non-Christian explanations for the origin of the Resurrection belief (mentioned in John and Matthew) were that the body had been taken from the tomb—either moved to another burial place or stolen to fake the Resurrection. These explanations conceded three key facts: Jesus died; his body was buried in Joseph’s tomb; the tomb was later found to be empty.  Yet again, written decades after, and only in 2 of the 4 gospels.  
  7. TOMB WAS GUARDED. Critics routinely dismiss Matthew’s story about the guards being bribed to say that they fell asleep, giving the disciples opportunity to steal the body (Matt. 28:11-15). But Matthew would have no reason to make up the story about the guards being bribed except to counter the story of the guards saying they fell asleep (see v. 15). Either way, the guards were there: the body had been in the tomb, the tomb had been guarded, and the body was no longer there.  Why in the world would you guard a tomb of a disgraced Jew?  Do you honestly believe the local Jews could convince a Roman governor to post guards on a tomb?  Someone who was crucified was left on the cross until they died from exposure, then fed to dogs and birds.  They would not have the honor of being buried in a tomb AND have Roman guards. 
  8. PAUL AND LUKE’S INDEPENDENT ACCOUNTS. Paul’s list of resurrection witnesses in 1 Corinthians 15:5-7 coincides with Luke’s account at several points, but in wording and in what is included Luke’s account is clearly independent of Paul. For example, Paul calls Peter by his Aramaic nickname “Cephas,” not Simon or Peter; he refers to “the twelve,” Luke to “the eleven”; Luke does not mention the appearances to James or the five hundred. Thus Paul and Luke give us independent accounts of the appearances they both mention.  Who are these 500?  Are they named?  Were they Jews, Romans, Gentiles?  Nameless witnesses are useless.  
  9. CLOPAS AND THAT OTHER GUY. Luke gives the name of one of the two men on the road to Emmaus who saw Jesus (Clopas) but not the name of the other man. If he was making up names he would presumably have given both of the men names. The fact that he identifies only one of the two men by name is best explained if that man, Clopas, was the source of Luke’s account. In short, this fact is evidence that the account came from an eyewitness.  How, how is this evidence?  He forgot to make up a name, and that omission is proof?  Really?
  10. BROTHER JAMES. Although Luke does not mention the resurrection appearance to James (the Lord’s brother) mentioned by Paul in 1 Corinthians 6, Luke does report that James had become a leading member of the apostolic group (see especially Acts 15:13-21). Since Jesus’ brothers had rejected Jesus during his lifetime (John 7:5), Paul’s reference to Christ appearing to James is probably based on fact.   Not sure how this contradiction is evidence, do you?  Acts was written about 90 C.E.  60ish years after the fact.  
  11. JOHN’S EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT. The author of the Gospel of John emphatically states that he was an eyewitness of the death of Jesus, of the empty tomb, and of resurrection appearances of Jesus (John 19:32-35; 20:2-9; 21:7, 20-25). Either he sincerely had these experiences or he was lying; appeals to legend or myth are out of the question here.  John was written 90 to 100 C.E. with the first complete manuscript somewhere in the mid 200s.  It would be physically impossible for this to be a first hand account.    He was lying or it is a myth.
  12. ANCIENT SKEPTICISM. Luke reports the skepticism of the men disciples the morning the tomb was found empty (Luke 24:22-24), and John reports Thomas’s skepticism about Jesus’ resurrection (John 20:24-26). These accounts (see also Acts 17:32; 1 Cor. 15:12) demonstrate that the perception of ancient people as gullible hayseeds who would believe any miracle story is a modern prejudicial stereotype.   No real claim here, does not prove a point that I can make out.  I don’t think ancient people were any more gullible than now.  
  13. PAUL’S CONVERSION. Paul was a notorious persecutor of the early Christians prior to his becoming an apostle. His explanation, that Christ appeared to him and called him to faith and the apostolic ministry, is the only plausible explanation for his 180-degree change. Moreover, Paul’s experience was entirely independent of the experience of the other apostles.  The only evidence that Paul persecuted early Christians is…from Paul.  Since Paul actually founded Christianity (not a well publicized fact) it would be impossible for him to persecute a religion that he created before he created it.  You can have Christianity without Christ ever existing, but if Paul didn’t exist, there would be no Christianity.  Paul never claimed to see a physical Jesus. Paul believed he met Jesus on the road to Damascus, but this does not make Jesus real.  
  14. PAUL’S GENTILE MISSION. Paul’s encounter with the risen Jesus did not result merely in him accepting Jesus as the Jews’ Messiah. Instead, he saw himself, a trained and zealous Pharisee, as commissioned by Jesus to take the good news of the Messiah to uncircumcised Gentiles. The fact that Paul embraced such a calling against his former passionate beliefs and training makes any appeal to hallucination or delusion implausible.  Why not?  It could be he was hallucinating.  Happens all the time.  It is easier to believe Jesus was a figment of Paul’s imagination than someone coming back from the dead.  

Apologetics – Listed

I wanted to jot down all the Christian apologetics out there. Let’s see how fast I can refute each one.  This list is taken from Wikipedia.

Philosophical Arguments:

  1. Cosmological argument – Argues that the existence of the universe demonstrates that God exists. Various primary arguments from cosmology and the nature of causation are often offered to support the cosmological argument.  This is more or less the first mover argument.  It has many flaws, most keen is the fact is the even if there is a first mover, there is no link between that first mover and whatever god you believe in.  
  2. Teleological argument – Argues that there is a purposeful design in the world around us, and a design requires a designer. Cicero, William Paley, and Michael Behe use this argument as well as others.  I do not accept the world looks designed.  Evolution by natural selection may make it appear there is design, but even Darwin debunked this one.  
  3. Ontological argument – Argues that the very concept of God demands that there is an actual existent God.  This is thinking god(s) into existence.  Even when it was formulated over 750 years ago, contemporaries pointed out you can substitute any other word for god and the argument still works. 
  4. Moral Argument – Argues that there are objectively valid moral values, and therefore, there must be an absolute from which they are derived.  There are no morals outside of thinking brains and brains are subjective.  There are no moral absolutes.  
  5. Transcendental Argument – Argues that all our abilities to think and reason require the existence of God.  Silly argument, machines and animals can think, do they require a god?  There is no transcendent reality, it is a fiction.  
  6. Presuppositional Arguments – Argues that the basic beliefs of theists and nontheists require God as a necessary precondition.   This one is just stupid, God exists because we need god to exist to have reason and we need reason to reason god.  It is a stupid, circular argument.  
  7. Alvin Plantinga’s argument that belief in God is properly basic, reformed epistemology.  Which is basically Presuppositional arguments restated.  
  8. Pascal’s wager, is an argument that posits that humans all bet with their lives either that God exists or that he does not. Pascal argues that a rational person should live as though God exists.  Somehow we can trick god into believing we believe?  Seems a better argument against god than for. 

Moral apologetics

Moral apologetics states that real moral obligation is a fact. Catholic apologist Peter Kreeft said, “We are really, truly, objectively obligated to do good and avoid evil.”  There are no moral absolutes and empathy is enough for me.

Scientific apologetics
Many Christians contend that science and the Bible do not contradict each other and that scientific fact supports Christian apologetics.  Bwahahaha.  The earth was not created before the sun.  Your argument has no value.  People do not come back from the dead.  Your argument has no value.

Creationist apologetics

The Creation Museum is a museum run by Answers in Genesis, a young Earth creationism apologetics organization
Creation apologetics include young Earth creationism, old Earth creationism, and theistic evolution. Young Earth creationists believe the Bible teaches that the Earth is approximately 6,000 years old, and reject the scientific consensus for the age of the Earth.
Experiential apologetics
Experiential apologetics is a reference to an appeal “primarily, if not exclusively, to experience as evidence for Christian faith.” Also, “they spurn rational arguments or factual evidence in favor of what they believe to be a self-verifying experience.” This view stresses experience that other apologists have not made as explicit, and in the end, the concept that the Holy Spirit convinces the heart of truth becomes the central theme of the apologetic argument.

Biblical Morality and Keller

Tried plowing through the book by Timothy Keller, An Invitation to the Skeptical, Making Sense of God.  I saw many 5 star reviews for the book, with extensive praise being heaped upon the author and this book.  I have to be honest, he was neither compelling or interesting.  Excessive use of “quotes” and endnotes made reading tedious.  The first 4/5ths of the book are dedicated to insulting the secular worldview.  The book is loaded with logical fallacies that are too numerous to list here.  I am not going back to review this dreck chapter by chapter.

As a skeptic, Keller really missed the mark trying to convince me.  He makes too many assumptions of the reader and makes odd choices, such as refuting an evolutionary biologist using song lyrics.  No, I am not kidding.  He uses Nietzsche like a crutch; quote mines authors far more capable than himself.  He constantly conflates belief with faith and uses solipsism as a  justification of the assertion that secularism requires as much faith as religion.  He uses numerous omissions and lies, such as ancient people did not contemplate the problem of evil.  Epicurious anyone?

The last fifth of the book it dedicated to good, old fashioned apologetics.  Not limited to, but including, the Kalam argument, argument from fine tuning, morality and others.  A large section of the book is dedicated to the idea that morality can only be derived from an absolute morality.  Personally, I am a moral relativist.

The book did get me thinking, just what the heck are Judeo-Christian morals?  The author certainly didn’t define them.  He had very, very short Bible quotes, and none really outlined what that morality is.  For a Christian pastor, he really does not refer to the Bible in any coherent way.  So, to the internet I went and found 40 Bible verses for Morality and Redemption.  So, let’s dive in and see what moral absolutes the Bible has to offer:

Leviticus 11:44-45

‘For I am the LORD your God Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy, for I am holy. And you shall not make yourselves unclean with any of the swarming things that swarm on the earth. ‘For I am the LORD who brought you up from the land of Egypt to be your God; thus you shall be holy, for I am holy.'”

 So, don’t have sex with animals?  Wow, thanks for that little nugget of morality.

Matthew 5:48

“Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Not sure how this relates to morality.

Matthew 5:43-44

“You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR and hate your enemy.’ “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,

Nice thought, not very useful in the real world.

Luke 6:27-28

“But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.

Well, really the same thing as the last statement, moving on.

Luke 6:35-36

“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

Again, the same thing as the last 2 quotes.  Be good for goodness sake and have mercy.  Nice concept, probably get you shot in the end.

1 Peter 1:15-16

but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written, “YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.”

No idea how this is morality.  Redemption, maybe?

Isaiah 51:4

“Pay attention to Me, O My people, And give ear to Me, O My nation; For a law will go forth from Me, And I will set My justice for a light of the peoples.

Must be a little out of context.  No morals here, just a call for justice.

Romans 7:12

So then, the Law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

Something is good and holy because it is good and holy.  Kinda circular.

Exodus 20:1-7

Then God spoke all these words, saying, “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. “You shall have no other gods before Me. read more.

No other gods before me.  Not really a moral thing here, just a jealous god.

Deuteronomy 6:25

“It will be righteousness for us if we are careful to observe all this commandment before the LORD our God, just as He commanded us.

Obey the commandments that are commanded.  No morals here, just adherence to the rules.

Psalm 119:137-138

Righteous are You, O LORD, And upright are Your judgments. You have commanded Your testimonies in righteousness And exceeding faithfulness.

No idea.

Psalm 147:19-20

He declares His words to Jacob, His statutes and His ordinances to Israel. He has not dealt thus with any nation; And as for His ordinances, they have not known them. Praise the LORD!

Just what are those statutes and ordinances?  10 commandments?  619 rules?

Proverbs 29:18

Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, But happy is he who keeps the law.

Just obey the rules and you will be happy.

Isaiah 51:7

“Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, A people in whose heart is My law; Do not fear the reproach of man, Nor be dismayed at their revilings.

No morals here, either.

Amos 2:6-7

Thus says the LORD, “For three transgressions of Israel and for four I will not revoke its punishment, Because they sell the righteous for money And the needy for a pair of sandals. “These who pant after the very dust of the earth on the head of the helpless Also turn aside the way of the humble; And a man and his father resort to the same girl In order to profane My holy name.

Help the helpless and Father and Son should not fuck the same girl?  Deep morals there, I tell you.

Isaiah 1:15-23

“So when you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide My eyes from you; Yes, even though you multiply prayers, I will not listen Your hands are covered with blood. “Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Remove the evil of your deeds from My sight Cease to do evil, Learn to do good; Seek justice, Reprove the ruthless, Defend the orphan, Plead for the widow. read more.

So be a public defender.

Amos 5:21-24

“I hate, I reject your festivals, Nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies. “Even though you offer up to Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them; And I will not even look at the peace offerings of your fatlings. “Take away from Me the noise of your songs; I will not even listen to the sound of your harps. read more.

No morals here, god is not listening.

Micah 6:8

He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God?

Be just, kind, and humble.  Sounds like someone has been borrowing from the Tao or Buddhist ideals.

Ephesians 5:5

For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.

Kind of vague here.  Simple rules not be an idolater or coveter.

Colossians 3:5-7

Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry. For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience, and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them.

More impurity, passion, evil desire and greed=idolatry.

John 1:14

And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.

No morals, just redemption.

Matthew 5:17-20

“Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. “Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. read more.

So morals are the 10 commandments then.

John 1:17-18

For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ. No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.

More redemption and contradiction.

John 3:19

“This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil.

Circular reasoning here.

Hebrews 4:15

For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

Don’t know.

Deuteronomy 24:17-18

“You shall not pervert the justice due an alien or an orphan, nor take a widow’s garment in pledge. “But you shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt, and that the LORD your God redeemed you from there; therefore I am commanding you to do this thing.

No real lesson here.

Leviticus 19:13-18

‘You shall not oppress your neighbor, nor rob him The wages of a hired man are not to remain with you all night until morning. ‘You shall not curse a deaf man, nor place a stumbling block before the blind, but you shall revere your God; I am the LORD. ‘You shall do no injustice in judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor nor defer to the great, but you are to judge your neighbor fairly. read more.

Don’t steal, pay the man right away, don’t be a dick to the deaf, blind.  Treat everyone equally.  Finally, some real morals.  Really, not earth shattering moral absolutes here, just empathy.

Deuteronomy 15:12-15

“If your kinsman, a Hebrew man or woman, is sold to you, then he shall serve you six years, but in the seventh year you shall set him free. “When you set him free, you shall not send him away empty-handed. “You shall furnish him liberally from your flock and from your threshing floor and from your wine vat; you shall give to him as the LORD your God has blessed you. read more.

Good, solid morals for keeping slaves here.  If you read the complete quote, you can keep the slaves forever if they are married.

Deuteronomy 24:21-22

“When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, you shall not go over it again; it shall be for the alien, for the orphan, and for the widow. “You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt; therefore I am commanding you to do this thing.

Leave the scraps for the poor.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

Don’t defile yourself.

Romans 12:1-2

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

No morals, just redemption.

Ezekiel 36:26-27

“Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.

More redemption and we will be stone, then not stone, but stone?

1 Corinthians 6:9-11

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Kind of harsh here.  If you are effeminate or gay you can’t get into heaven?  The rest of the items on this list are a choice, but not if you are gay or effeminate.

Romans 8:3-4

For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

More redemption, blood sacrifice.

Galatians 5:19-24

Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. read more.

So, if  you act like a normal adult, you can’t get into heaven.  I see they prohibit just about every fun thing out there.

Ephesians 4:22-24

that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.

Redemption theme.

Philippians 2:12-13

So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

Redemption?  Maybe?

Colossians 3:8-12

But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him– read more.

 

Hebrews 8:10

“FOR THIS IS THE COVENANT THAT I WILL MAKE WITH THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL AFTER THOSE DAYS, SAYS THE LORD: I WILL PUT MY LAWS INTO THEIR MINDS, AND I WILL WRITE THEM ON THEIR HEARTS. AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE.

Jeremiah 31:33

“But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the LORD, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.

PragerU Murder

Hoo boy, found a fountain of stupid this week.  PragerU.com has ‘instructional’ videos, in this case, on religion and the old, worn out trope of objective morality.  Quite a few Atheist YouTube channels have made response videos,

https://youtu.be/kOlf-lEkf5k

https://youtu.be/1yZFkI292CA

And many more.

but I prefer the written form, so here are my comments below:

Do you believe that good and evil exist?

No.  They are adjectives or adverbs, not nouns.

The answer to this question separates Judeo-Christian values from secular values.

Let me offer the clearest possible example: murder.

Is murder wrong? Is it evil? Nearly everyone would answer yes. But now I’ll pose a much harder question: How do you know?

There are three questions here, and he is trying to conflate the first two.  Is murder wrong?  Yes, most of the time.  Is murder evil?  No.  How do I know murder is wrong?  The wrongness of murder is relative.  Is it wrong during war?  I don’t think so.  It is relative.  I don’t know if it is wrong, it is relative.

I am sure that you think that murder is wrong. But how do you know?

I, personally, think murder is wrong, but I understand when murder is necessary.  The key word here is think.  It is my opinion that murder is wrong and a species that didn’t think murder was wrong, most of the time, would survive long.

If I asked you how you know that that the earth is round, you would show me photographs from outer space, or offer me measurable data. But what photographs could you show, what measurements could you provide, that prove that murder or rape or theft is wrong?

No, I can’t prove murder or rape or theft is wrong, objectively.

The fact is…you can’t. There are scientific facts, but without God there are no moral facts.

There are no moral facts, it is a nonsensical phrase.

In a secular world, there can only be opinions about morality. They may be personal opinions or society’s opinion. But only opinions. Every atheist philosopher I have read or debated on this subject has acknowledged that if there is no God, there is no objective morality.

So what?  Yes, morality is an opinion and IT IS CONSTANTLY CHANGING.  Doesn’t bother me at all the morality is not objective.

Judeo-Christian values are predicated on the existence of a God of morality. In other words, only if there is a God who says murder is wrong, is murder wrong. Otherwise, all morality is opinion.

Even if there is a god, morality is still an opinion, since it would be a god’s opinion.  Even in your own holy book, your god murders everyone and everything.

The entire Western world – what we call Western Civilization – is based on this understanding.

That is an assertion, and most of the values of Western Civilization are a result of the enlightenment, which is in turn based on Greco-Roman values.

Now, let me make two things clear.

First, this doesn’t mean that if you don’t believe in God, you can’t be a good person. There are plenty of kind and moral individuals who don’t believe in God and Judeo-Christian values.  But the existence of these good people has nothing – nothing – to do with the question of whether good and evil really exist if there is no God.

Then what was the fucking point of this video???

Second, there have been plenty of people who believed in God who were not good people; indeed, more than a few have been evil – and have even committed evil in God’s name. The existence of God doesn’t ensure people will do good. I wish it did. The existence of God only ensures that good and evil objectively exist and are not merely opinions.

If the existence or non-existance of gods don’t change how people act, why should we care?  It is a needless layer of complexity.

Without God, we therefore end up with what is known as moral relativism – meaning that morality is not absolute, but only relative to the individual or to the society. Without God, the words “good” and “evil” are just another way of saying “I like” and “I don’t like.” If there is no God, the statement “Murder is evil” is the same as the statement “I don’t like murder.”

So?  There are many societies in the world right now that don’t follow the Bible and Yahweh and Jesus are just fictional characters, and they are doing just fine.

Now, many will argue that you don’t need moral absolutes; people won’t murder because they don’t want to be murdered. But that argument is just wishful thinking. Hitler, Stalin, and Mao didn’t want to be murdered, but that hardly stopped them from murdering about a hundred million people.

I don’t know what the point of this statement is.  Belief in a god does not stop people from murder either, so it is a non sequitur.

It is not a coincidence that the rejection of Judeo-Christian values in the Western world – by Nazism and Communism – led to the murder of all these innocent people.

And is also not a coincidence that Judeo-Christian values led to the largest genocide is human history, the massacre of the Native Americans.

It is also not a coincidence that the first societies in the world to abolish slavery – an institution that existed in every known society in human history – were Western societies rooted in Judeo-Christian values. And so were the first societies to affirm universal human rights; to emancipate women; and to proclaim the value of liberty.

I really don’t think this statement is factually correct.  Liberty is a Deist value, not a Judeo-Christian.  Your values come from a book that supports slavery, demeans women (most of whom are unnamed) and has nothing to do with liberty.

Today, the rejection of Judeo-Christian values and moral absolutes has led to a world of moral confusion.

We live in the most peaceful time in human history, how this a bad thing?

In the New York Times, in March 2015, a professor of philosophy confirmed this.

Source?

He wrote: “What would you say if you found out that our public schools were teaching children that it is not true that it’s wrong to kill people for fun? Would you be surprised? I was.”

What the fuck are you talking about?  I went to public and secular schools only.  I don’t remember anything like that.

The professor then added: “The overwhelming majority of college freshmen view moral claims as mere opinions.”

So?  Who should I care about the opinions of college freshmen?

So, then, whatever you believe about God or religion, here is a fact:

Without a God who is the source of morality, morality is just a matter of opinion. So, if you want a good world, the death of Judeo-Christian values should frighten you.

No, doesn’t frighten me at all.  See Sweden.

I’m Dennis Prager.

Lost Jesus

I have to make an admission, I don’t think Jesus (Christ or of Nazareth) ever existed.
Jesus Christ is just a silly myth, and debating if he ever rose again is just stupid. Why?
This logic:
“All elephants are pink, Nellie is an elephant, therefore, Nellie is pink!” -The Fourth Doctor.
This statement is logical, but ignores one fact, Elephants aren’t pink.

Whenever I hear an argument about the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the logic is:
1. After his crucifixion, Jesus was buried in a tomb by Joseph of Arimathea
2. On the Sunday following the crucifixion, Jesus’ tomb was found empty by a group of his women followers
3. On multiple occasions and under various circumstances, different individuals and groups of people experienced appearances of Jesus alive from the dead
4. The original disciples believed that Jesus was risen from the dead despite their having every predisposition to the contrary.

This logic ignores one fact, people don’t rise from the dead. Ever. Over 110,000,000,000 people have lived and died on Earth over the last 200,000 years.
None have returned from the dead. There is no mechanism for someone to return from the dead after 3 minutes, no less 3 days.
Until you can prove that someone can return from the dead, the whole argument is pointless.

On Jesus of Nazareth, he was almost certainly based on a compilation of apocalyptic preachers who were a dime a dozen in the first century.
His supposed teachings appear to cobbled from the Old Testament and eastern teachings from Confucius (Who is the origin of the golden rule.) and the Tao, the Way.

Taken together, Jesus Christ, half man/half god, all god, whatever, is an obvious myth.
Jesus of Nazareth is a compilation or  very very loosely based on a real person. Jesus was a common name at the time. Jesus of Nazareth is about as earth shaking as Joe from Newark, NJ.
His teachings are unremarkable and are poorly stated parables.

For a long time I at least Jesus, in some form is real, but from where I am standing, he is a complete myth; Christ or of Nazareth.

Reasonable Faith

Been going through a little of William Lane Craig’s site, Reasonable Faith.  He is a skilled rhetorician and apologist.  He takes thousands of words to convey childish ideas.  Here is an example.

In this article he takes 6,611 words to convey….god is real because without god I feel sad.  Really, that is what it all boils down to.

But if there is no God, it will end that way, like it or not. This is reality in a universe without God: there is no hope; there is no purpose….

What is true of the universe and of the human race is also true of us as individuals. If God does not exist, then you are just a miscarriage of nature, thrust into a purposeless universe to live a purposeless life.

Do you understand the gravity of the alternatives before us? For if God exists, then there is hope for man. But if God does not exist, then all we are left with is despair. Do you understand why the question of God’s existence is so vital to man?

All I can say to statements like this is: so?  Yeah, we live a cold, mostly empty universe that does not care if we exist or not.  There is no immortality (thank goodness), no ultimate good, etc.  He feels so sad and upset the universe is like this so…god?  Just because you wish it would be true, does not mean it is true.  I wish Santa was real.  I wish magic was real.  It is not.  Grow up.

He makes no evidential claims, heck, he does not even link this vague pantheist god to Yahweh and even admits that:

Now I want to make it clear that I have not yet shown biblical Christianity to be true. But what I have done is clearly spell out the alternatives. If God does not exist, then life is futile. If the God of the Bible does exist, then life is meaningful….

So, in the end, yes, he believes in a god so that he feels there is an ultimate purpose of life and immortality.  Personally, I think immortality is an absurd concept and would be the worst possible fate of a sentient being.  For the ultimate purpose question, all I can say is grow up.  For the vague morality questions, evolution and altruism is a good enough answer for me.  Subjectivity and relativism does not keep me up at night, and I am  surprised this a still used an apologetic.