Gunboat Diplomat

It seems someone from CICCU (or at least, someone from a Cambridge IP address) posted an advert for this year’s CICCU Convert-a-thon to my last entry. You’ve got to admire the brass neck of that: it seems vaguely reminiscent of something old JC himself might have done. I replied in kind, and so The Great God Debate thread was begun. It’s mostly me and robhu vs nlj21 right now. Feel free to join us, as long as you can spell and punctuate and are not any sort of nutter.

13 Comments on "Gunboat Diplomat"


  1. It’s all a bit The Great Very-Evangelical-Christian-God Debate – there are various objections I have to theism, but the Hell thing isn’t one of them since it seems a bit of a strawman 🙂

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      1. Well (and this is a strained analogy), if someone said “How can you believe in a God if he incarnates as a bull in order to seduce young ladies?”, you’d presumably say “That’s irrelevant, there’s no reason to suggest that anyone’s idea of a deity need include all that”. Similarly, unless you’re a Christian, demonstrating that Hell is a dodgy concept doesn’t disprove a deity, it just shows that Hell (like incarnating as a bull) is a dodgy concept.

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        1. In a similar manner, I don’t see why it is necessary to assert that God is omnipotent. He only has to be sufficiently powerful that mere humans perceive the limits.

          Personally, I believe in the existance arbitrarily potent beings, but not omnipotent ones…

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          1. Personally, I believe in the existance arbitrarily potent beings, but not omnipotent ones…

            What’s the difference? (I’m thinking from you previous paragraph, something to do with the distinction between how something is perceived, and what the thing is, but am not sure.)

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              1. Ok. But you don’t think this potency is unbounded. I’m with you (forgot my analysis for a moment, and was thinking x_{n+1}>x_n for all n implied x was unbounded. Now my brain has kicked in!)

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          2. Interesting. I suppose there is no way one could tell the difference between say “God” and a significantly more advanced race of aliens for instance.

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        2. Mmmm… Showing that hell is a dodgy concept (for instance) would only show that any definitions/explanations of God that relied upon that concept would be flawed. I suspect its quite hard to prove that God doesn’t exist as: a) It’s hard to prove a negative b) “God” is not terribly well defined

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    1. That’s true, but it did begin as a discussion of the merits of the CICCU mission, so the evangelical Christian God was the one on offer, as it were (and the one nlj21 was interested in defending).

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