This is a response to @No_drones on Twitter. The full text of his tweet can be found here: http://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1s2sovj
@No_Drones says this:
The correct answer to this question is: no. Employing weasel words, this
is the fallacy of false dilemma. An omnipotent God CAN create a stone
of any weight AND He CAN lift any stone He creates. You are creating the
square circle, not theism. An inability is not an ability. God can do
anything that is logically possible and does not violate His own nature.
My opponent says above that an inability is not an ability. And yet, I am able to make a contraption that's too heavy for me to lift. That's an ability that I have. I am also able to grow in size. Can the Biblical God grow in size? I don't even know if he has a size to begin with. According to some, he's a spirit and has no physical attributes at all. According to others, he's omnipresent (exists everywhere and therefore it seems he can't grow in size).
If God can't make an object that's too heavy for him to lift, then there's something I can do and God can't do. It's not logically impossible for one to make something that's too heavy for oneself to lift. I can do something God can't do!
And yet, the Bible repeatedly tells us that there's NOTHING God can't do. Matthew 19:26 has Jesus saying "with God all things are possible". Genesis 18:14 has God himself saying to Abraham "Is anything impossible for the Lord?". This is in the context of making an infertile woman (Sarah) get pregnant. But again, the biblical claim is phrased in the absolute; NOTHING is impossible (or too hard) for God. There are many other verses in the Bible that imply God has ABSOLUTE power. And yet, absolute power is logically impossible.
What follows is that what my opponent attempts to do above is to limit the power that the Bible seeks to grant God. I'm not responsible for what the Bible says. My claim is simple: The BIBLICAL God (ie, the God described in the Bible) is logically impossible and therefore doesn't exist.
I will go further. The Bible claims that God is omniscient; he knows everything (1 Samuel 16:7; 1 Kings 8:39; 1 Chronicles 28:9; Psalms 139:1-6, 23; Jeremiah 17:10; Luke 16:15; Romans 8:27; Revelations 2:23). The Bible is full of these claims; nothing is hidden from the Lord, he knows your heart, knows everyone's heart, he's everywhere etc. See also a very nice article on this at http://churchlayman.wordpress.com/2007/10/09/god-is-omniscient-he-sees-and-knows-everything/.
And yet, in Genesis 18, God hears the outcry of the grave sin of Sodom and Gomorrah. His response to this news is:
20 “The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous 21 that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know.”
The Hebrew word in this verse for "will know" is "Yada" (transliteration - see Strong's Concordance) and it means "to know, learn, perceive, find out, discern, consider...."
The Bible tells us that this omniscient God, the one who KNOWS EVERYTHING, is planning on COMING DOWN to Sodom and Gomorrah to see things personally and then to FIND OUT if things are really as bad as he has been told. This is a logical contradiction on THREE GROUNDS.
1) A god who knows everything (and in particular, everyone's heart), as the Bible tells us, is not a god who would need to come down to Sodom and Gomorrah to find out if things are as bad as the cry told him.
2) A god who knows everything can't possibly use the word "Yada" (I will find out)! He can't find out that which he already knows. And since he knows EVERYTHING, there's NOTHING EVER for him to find out.
3) The god of the bible is declared to be EVERYWHERE. See, for instance, Jeremiah 23:
23 “Am I only a God nearby,”
declares the Lord,
“and not a God far away?
24 Who can hide in secret places
so that I cannot see them?”
declares the Lord.
“Do not I fill heaven and earth?”
declares the Lord.
Is it possible for a God who IS EVERYWHERE to "go down" (the Hebrew word is "Yarad" and means "to go down, descend, sink, be prostrated) to Sodom and Gomorrah? No, of course it's not. He's ALREADY THERE, as he's everywhere.
My opponent's argument fails on two grounds at this point. Firstly, he's attempting to limit the meaning of "omnipotence" beyond that which the Bible gives to God. The Bible is clear that there's NOTHING impossible for the Lord. It does NOT say "there's nothing impossible for the lord except for that which is impossible for the lord" (and that wouldn't be very helpful as a definition of omnipotence in any event; note that the concept is so unreal that philosophers have been struggling to coherently define it for centuries now).
Secondly, the God of Genesis 18:20 is NOT the God of the rest of the Bible. Taken in its entirety, the Bible therefore proposes a God that can't possibly exist. And if he can't possibly exist, the only rational conclusion is he DOES NOT exist.
Note that Genesis 18 is not the only example of this. The God of the Bible is self-contradictory in a large number of aspects. Therefore, he doesn't exist. He's made up by a number of writers, each with his own views and his own agenda and theology. This explains why each portrays this deity in a different light, often with contradicting characteristics.
Comments are welcome