Some questions about a logical argument for miracles

I am in dialog with someone online. They are posing some very challenging questions thoughts to my logical argument for miracles.

This is the argument I am working with:

Logical Argument for Miracles
Premise 1: All states of matter change over time
Premise 2: Fixed states of matter don’t exist
Premise 3: Changing states of matter can only be measured if there is a constant universal invariant absolute that we can measure
Argument 1: Matter changes over time continuously
Argument 2: Either all matter always existed or all matter began to exist
Argument 3: Matter began to exist at a specific point in time
Argument 4: The first cause of all matter must be based on a universal invariant absolute
Argument 5: The assumption of universal invariant absolutes assumes complete control over all matter for all time
Argument 6: There are at least 3 universal invariant absolutes dictating the universe at all times
Argument 7: The first cause of all matter must have all power over all matter at all times
Argument 8: There must be an intelligence behind the cause of all matter for matter to continue to function without error and this intelligence must have all knowledge of all matter for all times
Argument 9: The intelligence of all power over all matter for all times must be all present with all matter for all times
Argument 10: An all-powerful, all present, all knowing intelligence of all matter is behind all matter
Argument 11: An all powerful, all present, all knowing intelligence over all matter for all times is effectively God
Argument 12: God has all power, has all knowledge, and is all present over all matter for all times
Argument 13: Matter cannot measure itself completely due to there being at least 3 things dictating the universe at all times because of the chaos theory
Argument 14: If humans are made of matter then they cannot fully measure matter
Argument 15: God changes matter humans cannot measure
Argument 16: God effectively does miracles because He does things we cannot understand

Some questions I am currently dealing with are:

Why isn’t God a brute fact?
How can I show matter is in constant motions without referring to individual experience?
Why is it necessary for matter to continually change?
How do I counter “cyclical dependence”?
How do I present my arguments in light of it being possible God doesn’t exist in the first place? The thought here is, “Is it possible NOT-God exists?” If so, how do I argue against that? How do I argue against “God is a possibility, but I don’t have to believe in it”?
How do I combat the idea of entropy in the universe?
How can I argue common sense is a good argument? Problems with the details in that there is always more to explain.
“Why does it have to be intelligent? Why can’t it be ‘blind power’?”

I think that is most of them.

Thanks for any answers.

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You might find these two videos helpful:

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When someone asks:

I assume that what they mean is something like, Why doesn’t God just make Himself so obvious that we could all quit guessing.

I would offer the following thought:

The more light God gives men, the more accountable they are for it. And ever since Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden, men have repeatedly shown that receiving overwhelming light does not guarantee their trust and submission.

The Israelites, from Egypt to the Promised Land, had miraculous displays regularly, and they rebelled just as regularly.

Israel in the time of Christ had light as no other generation had ever received, and they crucified Him.

Lucifer certainly didn’t fall from heaven for a lack of light!

And to sin against greater light is to incur greater judgment.

And so, to mitigate judgment, Blaise Pascal said, “In faith, there is enough light for those who want to believe, and enough shadows for those who don’t.”

All men receive light from God (John 1:9), but ordinarily it is just enough for the next step. If a man would reject the next step of light, then what’s the point of giving him the next two? That would just un-necessarily subject him to greater judgment in the end.

The light is never the issue – the will is the issue. No one ever believes until he is first willing to. And for those who are willing, the light God gives is sufficient. But to those who are not, no light will ever be.

And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil – John 3:19.

And so, God mercifully hides the light from those unwilling to follow it. In Matthew 13:13-15, Jesus said that He spoke to the people in parables because they weren’t willing to see or hear or understand the truth.

Conversely, to believe with lesser light is to incur greater blessing.

And so, Jesus said to Thomas, because thou hast seen me thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed – John 20:29.

I hope this will help to answer at least your first question.

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If you don’t believe in PSR, you believe in brute facts.
https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/sufficient-reason/

Interesting arguments you provide. I’m wondering, this person you are dialoging with, what is their world view? Is this person questioning the existence for God and willing to be persuaded, or are they staunchly opposed to the idea of a creator? If the latter, are your careful arguments going to persuade this person, or do you get the sense his mind is made up?

It sounds like this person is an atheist, or at least agnostic. Have you checked out Frank Turek’s YouTube channel Cross Examined. Many of the questions you pose about countering arguments are either directly, or indirectly answered there. “I Don’t Have Enough Faith To Be An Atheist”, is another excellent resource. But perhaps you already know about theses?

Here’s a Cross Examined video with J. Warner Wallace (coldcasechristianity.com) I found helpful about the question “How Do I Know When Someone Just Doesn’t Care”

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I would like to bump this topic as there are still some unanswered questions.

Hi Jesse,

I’ll try and tackle a few of the questions you posed here. As to your argument, I am confused about its structure and your terms. How are you using Premise and how does it differ from Argument? An argument usually consists of premises and a conclusion, so I am not quite tracking why you start with three premises and then move to a series of “arguments” that also seem to be premises? Maybe you could clear that up for me?

But, let me try and help with the questions you put at the bottom of the post

Hope that helps. Look forward to more interaction, and please keep up the good work!

in Christ,
Anthony

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@anthony.costello,

Thanks for your post. It seems the biggest problem I face is the necessity of God. Admittedly, I am not super familiar with arguments for God’s necessity. I did borrow from a lot of other arguments that have been given in the past for God’s existence peppered in there, but in terms of knowing why God is necessary I admit I don’t know this much.

As far as “Premise, Argument, Conclusion” is concerned, that is just that the “Arguments” are a logical follow through from the premises. As far as that goes, I have a new argument structure and maybe you can take a look at it?

Logical Argument for Miracles

  1. Premise: All states of matter change over time
  2. Premise: Fixed states of matter don’t exist
  3. Premise: Matter changes over time continuously
  4. Premise: Matter began to exist at a specific time
  5. Premise: Changing states of matter can only be measured if there is a constant universal invariant absolute that we can measure from
  6. Premise: There are at least 3 constant universal invariant absolutes dictating the universe at all times
  7. Premise: The universe continues to function without error
  8. Premise: Humans exist within the universe
  9. Premise: Humans are made of matter
  10. Argument: The first cause of all matter is effectively the constant universal invariant absolute
  11. Argument: The constant universal invariant absolutes has complete control over all matter for all time (For all mater to continue to function without error)
  12. Argument: The first cause of all matter must have all power over all matter at all times (For all matter to continue to function without error)
  13. Argument: (For all matter to continue to function without error) there is an intelligence that has all knowledge of all matter for all times
  14. Argument: The intelligence of all power over all matter for all times is all present with all mater for all times (For all matter to continue to function without error)
  15. Argument: An all-powerful, all present, all knowing intelligence of all matter is the first cause behind all matter
  16. Argument: An all-powerful, all present, all knowing intelligence over all matter for all times is effectively God
  17. Argument: Matter cannot measure itself completely due to there being at least 3 things dictating the universe at all times
  18. Argument: Humans cannot completely measure matter
  19. Conclusion: God exists
  20. Conclusion: God effectively does miracles
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