Theodicy: solution lies in definition of God (Introduction)

by dhw, Monday, October 11, 2021, 11:14 (12 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Because, as God the creator, He can choose any method He wished and History, which He created, tells He evolved us from the first single cells.

dhw: Apparently he didn’t, because according to you, our line only started when he produced new phyla from scratch during the Cambrian. But I’m happy to support the theory that we evolved from the first single cells.

DAVID: The biochemical background of the Cambrian I've discussed: underlying vital biochemical processes were perfected in the simple organisms before the more complex Cambrian was introduced. There are precursors in the sense that the these vital processes were carried forward.

So he used the knowledge he had gained from his earlier special designs in order to specially design the brand new organisms (no precursors) which eventually he would specially turn into the special precursors of the only organisms he actually wanted to design – us and our food – as well as all the other organisms that had no connection with us and our food. No wonder you can’t understand why your all-powerful, all-knowing God used such a roundabout method to fulfil his one and only purpose. And yet apparently he knew right from the start exactly how to produce whatever he wanted to produce.

DAVID: I have no problem since I don't question what God presents to us.

You don’t question your interpretation of what God presents to us. Very different.

DAVID: Your problem is you use human thinking and apply it to what you think God should do.

dhw: Your problem is that you use human thinking, and find that what you think God has done does not fit in with what you think he intended to do, and that is why you answer my bolded question [now see below] by telling me that you have no idea and I should ask God.

DAVID: The bold is a distorted version of what you think I've done wrong. What God produced is exactly what He intended to do. God chose to evolve us. His choice, period, end of discussion, because I can't ask Him why He made that particular choice.

See above. And why have you left out all the specially designed life forms and foods that had no connection with humans?

DAVID: You are not God and cannot enter His mind to analyze His motives.

dhw: Nor are you and nor can you. However, at least you have accepted that all my alternative answers are logical. Only your own theory leaves that question unanswered.

DAVID: Unanswered only in your mind. Your alternative answers fit a highly humanized God who thinks only like a human. That is how I accept them; not a real acceptance, is it?

By acceptance I do not mean that you have to believe any of them (they are all different anyway). You accept that they are logical. And you have in the past agreed that our logic is like God’s, and we probably have thought patterns similar to his.

Brain cells (transferred from “Miscellany”)
QUOTE: “We’re going to have to learn what all these cell types are and try to figure out how they all work together.

dhw: […] Our cell communities provide an admirable example of how well things CAN work, but also of how any breakdown in cooperation, or any interference from outside, can result in catastrophe. I would also apply these observations to the problem of theodicy which is so troubling to believers. From cells to nations, your God has provided the same formula: “I’ve given you the means. Now it’s up to you how you use them.”

DAVID: And we've done that, and cells carefully follow His instructions.

dhw: What instructions do they carefully follow when they fall ill or die?

DAVID: Apoptosis and death is built in.

dhw: But you keep telling us (under “Theodicy”) that the system makes its own uncontrollable mistakes, and your God has tried hard to provide countermeasures, though he doesn’t always succeed.

DAVID: Of course.

And that means that your all-powerful God is not in full control of the system he designed. So you solve the problem of theodicy by telling us your God didn’t have the power to control the system, despite his all-powerfulness. I solve it by proposing that he didn’t WANT to control it but deliberately gave cells/cell communities the freedom to work out their own modes of survival. Why is your less than all-powerful God with his unwanted errors less "humanized" than my all-powerful God who produces precisely what he wants to produce?


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