William Lane Craig
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“If I had known there were that many good arguments for my existence, I would have put some in the Bible! Damn, my bad!”
“I think this guy works too hard to prove God's existence. All the proof you need is the perfection of Scarlett Johansson's ass - proving once again the superiority of empiricism.”
William Lane Craig is an analytic philosopher and a Christian apologist. A Christian apologist is someone who dedicates his intellectual life to making Christianity seem reasonable. Craig uses his superb debating skills to show that the most logical explanation for the creation of the universe is that it was created by an all-powerful mind, which created the universe for the purpose of having a loving relationship with creatures that are infinitely dumber than it and populate a minuscule percentage of the universe. Furthermore, the most plausible position holds that about 2000 years ago, the mind manifested itself into one of these creatures, who then taught about love and talked smack about tax collectors before getting executed by angry Romans. Being all-powerful, however, he rose from the dead, showboated a little, and then went back to his dad (who was also himself) so he could chill until the day he’d comeback to judge everyone. Upon losing to Craig, most atheists still don’t believe in God, but no longer believe in the art of debate.
Biography and Conversion
Craig was not always a believer. During his childhood and up until his late teens, Craig was an atheist and a chronic pot smoker. According to his own testimony, Craig became a believer after he looked inside his own heart and saw only darkness and selfishness. In his despair, Craig started to piss on himself, but because he was in a deranged psychological state, he confused the warm feeling for the witnessing of the Holy Spirit. He became "born-again" and immediately stopped smo… well, actually he never did stop smoking. In fact, his debate with Christopher Hitchens marked the first official, non-dormitory room debate in which one participant was totally baked (Craig) and one was totally drunk (Hitchens). Craig likes to point out that smoking pot is not antithetical to being a Christian apologist, since it's much easier to believe when you’re high.
Craig’s Philosophical Arguments
Since most people aren’t constantly high, Craig has to come up with arguments to defend the faith from normal people sayin' it's stupid. The following are three outlines of Craig's arguments for the existence of God and their objections. Warning: The following may be offensive to those who value logic.
The Kazaam Cosmological Argument
- Everything with a beginning has a cause.
- The universe had a beginning.
- Therefore, the universe must have had a cause.
- Therefore, Jesus is the way, the truth, and the light.
The problem with this argument is that the cause of the universe is more likely to be Shaquille O’Neal than Craig’s Christian God. This is true because of the metaphysical absurdities that arise with a substance dualist account of the mind. Also, Shaq is so awesome - how could he have NOT created the universe?
The Teleological or Design Argument
“Dude, like, look around. Everything is like, totally orderly. There’s like, constants and shit. There are physical laws that are, like, never broken except when Jesus decides to break them of course; but it's like the universe was created by some dude who was, like, really smart. There’s no way this could be random, dude. There’s just no fuckin' way.”
In this case, the Shaq objection can once again be used to undermine the argument; however, most philosophers don't believe that the universe was designed at all. The primary reason is the existence of the male nipple. Outside of some kinky uses, the male nipple seems to lack any purpose, though some long ones can be used as a poor man's hanger.
The Objective Moral Values Argument
- If God does not exist, then objective moral values do not exist.
- Objective moral values exist.
- Therefore, God exists.
- Therefore, stone gays.
The problem clearly avoids the Shaq objection, since his free-throw shooting is an affront to all that is decent. However, it runs into another problem: the problem of being wrong. John Leslie Mackie irrefutably disproved the existence of objective moral values with his “Argument from Queerness” in 1977: Moral statements, if they were true, would refer to objects that would have some sort of intrinsic normative property about them - a quality that renders them most certainly implausible. Thus, just as theology is a study without a subject, so too is ethics.
Mackie himself backtracked from this theory after he was kidnapped by Peter Singer, who then tied him up and repeatedly kicked him in the balls while yelling “What’s the matter, John? I’m not doing anything wrong, am I?" Mackie’s inability to withstand Singer’s righteous ball kicking, however, does nothing to refute his mathematical disproof of objective moral values. Try again, Dr. Craig!
Older Abandoned Arguments
During the early 80’s Craig stinted as a lead singer for a Van Halen cover band. During this time he published arguments establishing the divinity of Van Halen. The following is the Eddie Van Halen Ontological Argument:
- God is the one of which no greater can be conceived.
- God is the one who plays the guitar in a manner of which no greater can be conceived.
- Eddie Van Halen plays the guitar in a manner of which no greater can be conceived.
- Therefore, Eddie Van Halen is God.
After Eddie Van Halen started playing keyboard on the "1984" album, Craig recanted such arguments calling Eddie "a sellout, not God." Craig believes that Slash, formerly from Guns n' Roses, may be the second coming of Christ, but he has not yet published any arguments making the case.
ReasonableFaith.org Questions and Answers
Unlike other snooty intellectuals, Craig actually interacts with laymen through his website ReasonableFaith.org. Craig answers questions concerning combating atheism, the nature of the faith, and dating advice. The following are some samples:
Dear Dr. Craig,
“My question concerns a thorny issue regarding my Christian faith and the raising of my children. I was watching Sesame Street with my kids, as I do every school morning, when at the end of the program they announced the “number of the day." At this point, a number “7” with eyes and a mouth appeared on the program and started interacting with the characters. My daughter, who had just started kindergarten, then asked "Daddy, do numbers actually exist?”.
I replied with something to the effect of “Well…it’s a very complicated issue, honey. Many philosophers believe they do, and so do mathematicians. Why do you ask?” She replied by saying “Well, if numbers do exist, then I believe they exist necessarily. There is no possible world where the number seven would fail to exist, if it does indeed exist. However, doesn’t our Christian faith demand that we believe that God created all things seen and unseen? The necessary existence of numbers would refute the idea that God created all reality that exists outside Himself, no?".
I was floored! I felt a rising panic in my chest as I tried to come up with a response, but I could see no way out of it. Sesame Street had provided a decisive refutation of classical theism! (So I just told her she was grounded and then she started crying).So the question I have is this: Is my daughter right? Is the Platonism of Sesame Street irreconcilable with Christianity? And if so, should I prohibit my children from watching it? My daughter has already articulated her argument to her friends at CCD, and I am starting to get complaints from parents. HELP!”
Answer: You should do as I have and ban all things related to Sesame Street from your household. The Platonic Propaganda promulgated by Sesame Street is more of a threat to Christianity than pornography, Richard Dawkins, and the total lack of evidence for God combined! I would rather have my children watch the gay-agenda-promoting Teletubbies than be indoctrinated with the broken numerical ontology of this deceptively innocuous children’s program.
The existence of numbers is totally irreconcilable with the Christian faith for the reasons your daughter provided. To say that God co-exists with an infinite sea of metaphysically necessary entities would completely gut out the sovereignty and unique aseity of God that our Christian faith requires us to accept. I will point you to the extensive nominalist literature on the subject as I believe the nominalists have shown convincingly that abstract objects do not exist. (And not just because I’m emotionally invested in my Christian faith!).
Grounding your daughter was the right move. As a father, you are committed to maintaining a Christian household. I’m afraid if your daughter keeps promoting these Satanic Sesame lies, you’re going to have to burn her at the stake. (But only because God loves her and yearns for her salvation).
Dear Billy Craig,
“What's up Bill! I really appreciate your work and your answers have always been effective in helping me keep my faith. I just wanted to ask you a question that's been bugging me since I was twelve: Can God give himself a dick so big that even HE can’t suck it? Thanks for the help!”
Answer: David, God can do anything that is logically possible. The inability to give himself that which he cannot suck is illogical given his omnipotent nature. That being said, the only time God actually had male genitalia was when he took the form of Jesus Christ. Most biblical scholars agree that Jesus had the capacity to perform auto-fellatio and was well hung, though the only official number (9 ¾ inches!) comes from the Gospel of Thomas, which is non-canon. Jesus, however, definitely never committed the act, because that would have been gay - an egregious sin as evidenced by the zero times Jesus talked about homosexuality.
“HOW CAN YOU SAY GOD EXISTS WITH ALL THE SHIT GOING ON IN THE WORLD!: WAR, RAPE, DISEASE, JUSTIN BIEBER ALBUMS! MY OWN MOTHER RECENTLY DIED A PAINFUL DEATH VIA ELEPHANT STAMPEDE! I HAVE HUGE, UNSIGHTLY MAN-BOOBS THAT TURN AWAY EVERY GIRL THAT I LIKE!!!! DOES GOD JUST WORK IN MYSTERIOUS WAYS?! IF HE DID EXIST, WHY DOESN’T HE AT LEAST TAKE AWAY MY MAN-BOOBS?!! LOVING GOD, MY ASS!! YOU SIR, ARE A JOKE!! ”
Answer: I think your question is confusing the emotional problem of evil with the intellectual problem of evil. The emotional problem of evil is usually run by women: "Oh boo hoo! My mommy is dead! My daughter is dying of leukemia! How can God let this happen?! Waaaaaaaaa!!". If you stop being a whiny little bitch you can see that there are sound intellectual answers to the problem of evil.
The problem of human evil can be answered with a a free will defense. In order for free will to be meaningful , deviations from the good, such as the making of Bieber albums, must be tolerated. On the other hand, the problem of natural evil, such as famine or your freakish man-boobs, has two sound answers. First is the response given by my boy Alvin Plantinga, which notes that it is indeed possible that natural evil is caused by fallen angels or demons that we can't see. Thus, God has allowed you to have embarrassingly floppy titties because to prevent them would mean to violate the free will of these invisible entities. (And before you say there is no reason to believe in such entities, let me just point you to the most reliable source I know: the Bible!) Second, and I believe more importantly, natural evil creates an environment where people will freely and willfully come to God, which is the purpose of human creation. After all, nothing brings people to God more effectively than miserable lives.
So let your man-boobs be filled with joy! Come to the Lord, and you will see that evil pales in comparison to the chisel-chested Jesus Christ.
Battle with Richard Dawkins
Craig has debated many an atheist, however, the most famous with which he has never debated one on one is Richard "the Dick" Dawkins. Craig has offered to debate Dawkins and literally dozens have called for him to do so, however, he has chickened out. Dawkins has replied to such calls by saying “Craig is a total clown. I don’t debate clowns. I have been coulrophobic [sic] since I was a small child. I would be too terrified to debate him." When Dawkins grows a pair, the debate will happen, and the fate of the world will depend on it... in Craig's mind at least.