For Your Consideration, Use or Comment: A Logical Disproof of the Biblical God Concept

A version of the following disproof entitled The Biblical God Concept - Nullified has been published in The Freethinker which is the online magazine of the Science and Rationalists' Association of India:

The logical disproof of the Biblical god concept to be presented involves malice toward none, is not an attack on particular religions nor a statement against religion in general, and is solely in the interest of enlightenment to the good.

It involves only three definitions, each of which is self-evident. One is of a being, a second is of worship and the third is of a Biblical type god.

The definition of a being is that of a perceiver who cannot know whether its perceptions have anything to do with an external reality. Of course Descartes defined himself as this type of entity on the basis of obviousness. Very exactly, in that we have no way to test whether our perceptions have anything to do with an external reality we cannot know whether they do. Additionally, however, our experiences suggest that when we dream or hallucinate we internally generate perceptions that seem very real but have nothing to do with an external reality. Accordingly, especially with empirical suggestions that we sometimes internally generate perceptions that seem very real but have nothing to do with an external reality, we cannot rule out that it is our nature to do so all of the time. Therefore, our definition of a being is self-evident.

The definition of worship is veneration to the extent that its object is assumed to exist. In that one cannot worship something without acknowledging its existence this definition of worship is entirely consistent with the actual meaning of the word.

The definition of a Biblical type god is that of a perfect (in goodness) being who holds that it is right for others to worship it. This is entirely consistent with the Biblical god concept.

We shall proceed with a logical technique that utilizes reductio ad absurdum. That is, we shall first assume that a Biblical type god exists and from this using only logic arrive at a self-contradictory (absurd) proposition. This will leave only that a Biblical type god does not exist and the disproof will be complete. As such, assume that a Biblical type god exists.

By definition it holds that it is right for others to worship it. By the definition of worship they must acknowledge its existence to do so. Accordingly, the Biblical type god holds that it is right for others to acknowledge its existence. However, they are beings. By definition it is impossible for them to acknowledge the existence of anything more than perceptions. Therefore, the Biblical type god holds that it is right for them to do something that is impossible. At the same time, by definition it is perfect. In this it does not hold that it is right for others to do something that is impossible. Consequently, we have both that the Biblical type god does and does not hold that it is right for others to do something that is impossible.

This is the absurdity. Our only alternative is that a Biblical type god does not exist.

Quod Erat Demonstrandum.

It is incidental that the Biblical type god would not know whether others existed. Notwithstanding, in its perfection it would not decide that they did much less that they did as perceived. Moreover, in that it would not decide that any who might exist would exist as perceived it would not decide that any who might exist were imperfect. That is, it would not decide that any who might exist were its subordinate. In this, even supposing that a free desire to be worshiped could be moral, a perfect being would not hold that it was right for others to worship it and the Biblical god concept is again self-contradictory.

Analogously, of course, the Jesus concept is self-contradictory.

As set forth at the beginning there is no vindictiveness in this presentation. It is solely in the interest of enlightenment to the good.

As it pertains to enlightenment to the good it is meant to convey more than that the Biblical god concept is self-contradictory. It is meant to convey that, as our ability to know an external reality (if one exists) is scientifically precluded by our perceiver nature, meaningful development (true personal satisfaction) for us may only be realized in the form of internal rewards. That is, it may only be realized through decisions that afford fulfillment in effort independently from certainty of result.

Therefore, in that these all involve goodness of motive, more significantly than that the Biblical god concept is self-contradictory, this presentation is meant to convey that meaningful development must accommodate the personal conscience.

As the personal conscience assesses the appropriateness of subscription to the Biblical god concept it encounters the following: ‘Loving beings are characterized by selflessness, not egotism. They do not wish to be worshiped, narcissistic ones do. They wish to inspire others to be as good even better than they, not render them prostrate. There may be no double standards in the definition of love.’

Accordingly, fully informed and free subscription to the Biblical god concept is unconscionable. Consequently, it is incongruous with meaningful development even apart from the self-contradictory nature of the of the Biblical god concept.

Resultantly, in the interest of intellectual and emotional maturation, subscription to the Biblical god concept should be held repudiated not only in that it involves a self-contradictory notion but, more insistently, in that it cannot in full knowledge and goodness of motive be freely enacted.

John Jubinsky
MA-Mathematics, CPA

Tags: Disproof, God, Jubinsky

Views: 27

Replies to This Discussion

I don't know anything about Descartes (and therefore understood very little) however I like the idea behind your post. Here's a crack at it.
Christian: "God is good"
Me: "Does this mean that God is inherently good and lives up to an objective standard. If so, God is not the highest authority. Or does this mean that God determines what is good and just lives up to it. If so, this makes the statement God is good meaningless, since goodness is based on an arbitrary decision. It is the same as saying that everything Hitler did in Nazi Germany was perfectly legal."

Christian: "God is infinite"
Me: "Infinite denotes a potentiality of indefinate addition or subdivision. You can continually add one more to any list of numbers; but however many numbers you have reached at a given point, there are only that many and no more. The actual is always finite."

Christian: "God created everything"
Me: "Existence takes primacy over consciousness. Existence exists. Anything that exists has an identity that cannot contradict itself. Consciousness is the process of being aware of existence. Therefore a conscious being must have something to be conscious of. A being cannot be conscious of nothing (or only itself) and be considered conscious by definition. Therefore, a being of "pure" consciousness cannot exist to create the universe."

None of these arguments are new. they've been around for a long time (especially the first one which i think is attributed to Plato or Socrates). The biblical idea of god is selfcontradictory and illogical in and of itself. It amazes me to think that i was a christian for so long.
I don't know anything about Descartes (and therefore understood very little) however I like the idea behind your post.

Ahh, Rene Descartes is my personal god (pun fully intended). In short, he held that almost nothing can be proven with absolute certainty and any search for truth is best started from a position of doubt. Note that our American court system does not strive to prove, but to prove 'beyond a reasonable doubt," which was, Descartes pointed out, the best that we can do.

The only two things he felt could be proven in this universe with absolute certainty was mathematical concepts (no matter how you slice it, 1+1=2), and the existence of oneself; "I think therefore I am."

Even of these two and only two proofs in the entire universe, one of them - math - isn't even a tangible but an abstract idea.

The famous proof of one's own existence is gorgeous in its simplicity: "I think therefore I am." In other words, I believe that I exist. Simple law of truths; either my belief is true or false. If true, then I'm right. I exist. If false, then I am being deceived into believing I exist, and in order for something to be deceived - acted upon - it must exist. So either way, I exist.

Beautiful, elegant, simple. But as the OP points out, I can not in turn prove that you or anyone else exists.

In his "Discourse on Method," Descartes does offer up a proof of the existence of God. But many believe this was only done to appease the Inquisition and so he could publish his book without execution. A thorough reading shows that he is likely presenting the absurd-logical argument that John does here in the OP. He spends most of the book setting up these rules for logic, reasoning and proof-beyond-reasonable doubt, then proceeds to offer a 'proof' of god that struggles to tread water in his own set of rules.
Thanks a lot Stephen.
What you are saying is very true. Also, there are parts of it that can't be true so how can theists say it was divinely inspired? For example, in Mark 13:30 and Luke 21:32 Jesus said that the second coming was to occur before the generation of his time passed. Christians are still waiting for it.
I don't know. I'm not as educated as I would like to be about it.
Good points John. I am finding more and more however that the greatest wedge in the debate between Theist and Atheist is that the Theist does not or refuses to understand the most basic rules of logic. Namely, universal givens and standards of measure.

E.g.; your first point rests on the given that we can not prove existence of a being outside ourselves; particularly beings not corporeal (in the traditional sense. A Xian will call Jesus-on-grilled-cheese a corporeal entity). Your given goes further to explain how dreams, hallucinations and self-fulfilling prophecies work.

The Xian however does not grasp that while this fully and 'obviously' applies to the loin-cloth laden brown-skinned person deep in the Amazon, it can just as easily apply to the Xian himself.

All the time, one of the first attempts I make is to say "If something is true because it is in the bible, and needs no other proof, then you must hold everything in the bible to be literally true." Even this is beyond the grasp of most Xians.
Both of your comments are very interesting. Most Xtians simply refuse to entertain anything contrary to their beliefs, including the theory of evolution, regardless of how much sense it makes. I like your suggestion that Descartes' attempted proof of god was to appease the Inquisition. Like Galileo he might have recanted rather than be burned at the stake. Very interesting.

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