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  • #31
    larryniven questions about the trinitarian answer to Euthyphro...

    The side issue from the OP that MontgomeryScott focused on, of why God does not sin, spawned a discussion between Tico and larryniven which we’ve moved to the Euthyphro Companion Thread. The following excerpts from larryniven are copied here because they ask questions about our trinitarian answer:
    Originally posted by larryniven
    …we can now apply the dilemma to both the father and the son. Does the father's righteousness have to refer to outside facts, or is it arbitrary? Likewise, is the son's commitment based simply on the fact that it's the father's nature (thus making it arbitrary), or is there some other evaluation going on?
    And Larry continued:
    Originally posted by larryniven
    …who in the trinity has the moral nature originally and who is doing the agreeing. Otherwise, you're just waving your hands and telling us rather than showing us that this argument escapes the dilemma. In other words, it won't do to tell us "Between the trinity, there are some entities which have what I will call moral nature and some (other?) entities that agree with this nature, but I cannot tell you which entities these are, how the agreement happens, or what it means for their natures to be moral." I feel as though you are capable of a more detailed response, although I have not seen one yet from you. Thanks.
    Larry, you’ve made distinctions in the roles of the Persons of the Trinity that do not appear, and have nothing to do with the OP argument, as though we’ve claimed that the morality of one Person preceded another. We make no such claim, and our argument infers no such claim. Christianity asserts that all three Persons in the one God of the Trinity are good, eternally (not that one or more are good, and others agree). Euthyphro’s Dilemma questioned whether the definition of goodness can flow objectively from God. The eternal testimony within the Trinity that they have no accusations against each other can objectively corroborate to themselves the truth of their own claim to righteousness. And then love, a commitment to the good of someone, flows from that righteousness. This is what “God is good” means.

    The truth that "God is good" has more to it than most theologians seem willing to bear. The goodness of the persons of the Trinity is inherent in the fierce determination of their wills, thus they are good, and their eternally corroborating testimony objectively informs them of the truth of their claim. At the risk of being rude raising a side issue that we’ll only allow responses to in the Companion Thread or elsewhere: it is almost universally discussed among Christians that the eternal future is exhaustively foreknown (sorry for the redundancy), but the consequence that God could never therefore actually create a new idea if that were true is universally overlooked. Likewise, it is widely taught that mankind does not have a libertarian free will (sorry for the re-redundancy), but it’s almost completely overlooked that a lot of Christian teaching has left God without much of a will either. By saying God has no choice in the matter of goodness, theologians think they are magnifying Him, but in reality, if God cannot exercise His will in matters of goodness, that eliminates God's will from operating in billions of situations (countless actually) where this philosophical theory of His "goodness" is like a harness that forces God to go in one direction rather than another, although such teachers would be quick to respond that while they claim God has no choice, He really doesn't want a choice, and is pleased to comply with the harness. In truth, even at the moment of the greatest demonstration of God's Goodness, in the Garden of Gethsemane, God the Son had a choice, to fulfill the promise He made in the Garden of Eden, or not. The Lord was NOT compelled to go to the cross, but God made sure to reveal to us that fundamental and most glorious truth, that in every sense, Jesus went willingly.

    -Pastor Bob Enyart
    Denver Bible Church & KGOV.com
    Last edited by Bob Enyart; April 1, 2008, 10:18 AM.
    The Bob Enyart Live talk show airs at KGOV.com weekdays at 5 pm E.T. Also, same time, same station, check out Theology Thursday (.com) and on Fridays, Real Science Radio (.com) a.k.a. rsr.org. All shows are available 24/7 and you can call us at at 1-800-8Enyart.

    Comment


    • #32
      American Buddhist confuses corroboration with a definition

      American Buddhist, we moved your post to the Companion Thread because your Hindu claims and novel description of a Hindu creation myth were not sufficiently germane to keep this thread focused on this Christian Answer to Euthyphro. Your relevant comments:

      Originally posted by American Buddhist
      This seems like a rather weak argument, Bob. But don't feel bad. Greater minds than you and I have been wrestling with this for millennia.
      AB: Feelings aside AB, if it’s a weak argument, you should be able to demonstrate how it fails. But in your attempt, you confuse the OP “evidence” that confirms God’s definition of goodness with that definition itself…

      Originally posted by American Buddhist
      I don't understand how the three of them - the Trinity - in their agreement about justness and goodness amongst one another, can then 'define' goodness as a whole. Are you saying that the definition of goodness arises from the conduct, toward one another, of the Trinity?
      No. Their eternal non-confrontational conduct is the evidence that objectively validates the Trinity’s definition of goodness.

      Your next question repeats that assumption, and builds upon it…
      Originally posted by American Buddhist
      If so, is this because they decide that their behavior constitutes goodness [BE: No.] both for themselves and for the universe, or because they recognize (as in, see the innate nature of goodness beyond themselves) that their actions are good?

      I'm afraid I've led myself right back to the dilemma we started with.
      AB, yes, you have led yourself in circles. That’s because you’ve not followed the OP argument.

      First you confused the testimony of the triune witness with a definition of goodness, rather than realize we offer that testimony as God’s own corroborating evidence of His goodness.

      Secondly, you confuse the OP use of the word “recognize” with the concept of Divine Command Theory, obfuscating the whole distinction between Euthyphro’s two options.

      Originally posted by American Buddhist
      This little bit confused me as well [quoting BE]: “Is something good because God recognizes it as good? Yes.”

      I think the problem is the word 'recognize'… your use of recognize, I think, is more like the officiant recognizing the union of husband and wife at a wedding. In this case the recognition is in fact a performative act or utterance. His words bring into existence that which did not exist before.”
      AB, off with your head . If you’ve read either Euthyphro’s Dilemma itself or the OP, you know that the entire distinction between the two options is whether God recognizes (sees) what traits are righteous, or commands (decides, brings into existence) what traits will be considered righteous. Such obfuscation does not disprove our Christian answer to Euthyphro.

      Originally posted by American Buddhist
      I take it that this is what you wish to say about the Trinity and goodness. And their basis for creating goodness has been their own harmony amongst one another.
      AB, I invite you to try again, but first please re-read the OP because you’ll have to understand our argument to have any chance at refuting it. God’s harmony doesn’t create the definition of goodness. His harmony corroborates the validity of His definition of goodness, which definition is a description of His nature.
      Last edited by Bob Enyart; March 29, 2008, 09:43 PM.
      The Bob Enyart Live talk show airs at KGOV.com weekdays at 5 pm E.T. Also, same time, same station, check out Theology Thursday (.com) and on Fridays, Real Science Radio (.com) a.k.a. rsr.org. All shows are available 24/7 and you can call us at at 1-800-8Enyart.

      Comment


      • #33
        Dave Miller, please consider using the Companion Thread

        Originally posted by Davie Miller
        At least in the case of LOVE, this is a direct declaration of who God IS. Does God command that love is good? No, because God IS Love. Love is not a trait of God, it is the very substance of God. Does God recognize Love is good? Well, yes, but not in an external sense. God recognizes God's Self, God's Presence, manifested in Love, within God's Creatures.
        If by “Love is the very substance of God,” you mean that God cannot will to do otherwise, then Dave you overstate the case.

        Originally posted by BE’s reply to Larry Niven
        By saying God has no choice in the matter of goodness, theologians think they are magnifying Him, but in reality, if God cannot exercise His will in matters of goodness, that eliminates God's will from operating in billions of situations (countless actually) where this philosophical theory of His "goodness" is like a harness that forces God to go in one direction rather than another, although such teachers would be quick to respond that while they claim God has no choice, He really doesn't want a choice, and is pleased to comply with the harness. In truth, even at the moment of the greatest demonstration of God's Goodness, in the Garden of Gethsemane, God the Son had a choice, to fulfill the promise He made in the Garden of Eden, or not. The Lord was NOT compelled to go to the cross, but God made sure to reveal to us that fundamental and most glorious truth, that in every sense, Jesus went willingly.
        Dave, yes, Love is fundamental to who God is, and only a handful of attributes are more fundamental to who God is, than Love. In order of preeminence, the only and eternal God is Living, Personal, Relational, Good and Loving. He could not love perfectly, unless He were Good. He could not know that He was Good, unless He were relational. He could not be relational, unless He were personal. And He could not be personal, unless He were living. Thus the Bible says 30 times, “the Living God.” These are the qualitative attributes of God the Bible speaks of throughout, that take precedence even over the more commonly discussed Greek and Latin philosophical quantitative attributes of God that have to do with how much of a certain attribute does God have or not, that is, the OMNIs and IMs of omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, impassibility and immutability. Remember JONAH:
        Jehovah’s
        Obvious
        Nativity
        Attributes
        Hermeneutic

        The Babe in Bethlehem showed us who God truly is, for wise men came to the stable, to “worship Him” (Mat. 2:2). Yet that Infant was God the Son, who had just undergone extraordinary change, in order to become our Savior. When trying to identify which of God’s attributes are the most fundamental, use the JONAH hermeneutic…

        Jehovah’s Obvious Nativity Attributes Hermeneutic

        Holding her cooing newborn, any mom can tell you her baby’s attributes, of being living, personal, relational, and loving. But the sin inherited by the baby through the father will eventually express itself, and lead to death. And Mary would recognize an additional attribute in her Baby, because she did not conceive by a sinful man but of God as a virgin, therefore she could insert another into those four attributes: absolute goodness! For the angel promised her: “The Holy Spirit will… overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God!” Thus the Infant retained the indispensable and most fundamental attributes of God,

        Love is far more fundamental to who God is than many of His other biblical descriptions such as God being light, bread, a rock, and a door. But still, His expression of love is a function of God’s will, and it is because God is personal that He has a will, for possessing a will is a significant part of what it means to be personal. And God the son could divest Himself of some quantity of knowledge, as Jesus Himself explicitly disavowed, as “the Son,” omniscience (Mark 13:32), yet even though He humbled Himself through the Incarnation, He retained every bit of His qualitative attributes, which cannot be minimized or diluted without destroying them, namely, being Living, Personal, Relational, Good, and Loving, for the tiniest sin (if there be such), would utterly have destroyed Christ’s goodness, whereas laying down some amount of His quantitative attributes: knowledge, power, presence, passion, and changablity, this does not destroy His divinity because the quantitative OMNIs and IMs are secondary to the qualitative attributes. Thus God's power (His throne, authority) is built upon His righteousness (Ps. 89:14).

        OF COURSE I HAVE GONE OFF THE EUTHYPHRO TOPIC. I apologize, and again, it appears rude of me to follow a rabbit trail and not allow response in this thread. But nonetheless, any response to this tangent should be posted in the Euthyphro Companion Thread, in any of the Battle Royale X Grandstand threads, or elsewhere. And finally Dave…

        Originally posted by Dave Miller
        Now the question comes up, what does it mean for God (in Christ) to command that we love one another...
        Sorry Dave, that question can come up in another thread. Not here. In this thread we’re TRYING to stay focused (I know I’m the worst offender, but… it’s my thread ) on the question we’re answering. If the definition of goodness flows from God Himself and is not an external standard, then wouldn’t righteousness have to be arbitrary, as though God were simply deciding what righteousness will be, since then He would be determining what traits are righteous (like love) and which are evil (like envy). Thus, is He claiming to be righteous without any way of being able to objectively confirm that opinion of Himself (as would be true with a unitarian God like Allah)? These are the questions we want to stay focused on, and on the assertion that the Opening Post has successfully answered Euthyphro’s Dilemma.

        Thanks,

        -Pastor Bob Enyart
        Denver Bible Church & KGOV.com
        Last edited by Bob Enyart; April 11, 2008, 06:45 AM.
        The Bob Enyart Live talk show airs at KGOV.com weekdays at 5 pm E.T. Also, same time, same station, check out Theology Thursday (.com) and on Fridays, Real Science Radio (.com) a.k.a. rsr.org. All shows are available 24/7 and you can call us at at 1-800-8Enyart.

        Comment


        • #34
          Precedence of Attributes: Living, Personal, Relational, Good, and Loving

          Dave Miller’s post was moved to the companion thread. I imagine our edit decisions may seem unfair. For those unsure if your post will be moved, it would be helpful if you just posted in the Companion Thread to start with. Then, if a moderator judges your post sufficiently relevant to Opening Post arguments, forceful and/or insightful, and not repetitious with previous posts, “the moderator can move your post into this main thread” (Wildly Living Bible, Luke 14:10 ).

          Dave, the only part of your post I’ll address here is:
          Originally posted by Dave Miller
          I wouldn't dispute that God has these attributes [Living, Personal, Relational, Good, and Loving], but I would dispute the "preeminence" you assign to them. …you seem to be inferring that by accepting what Scripture says, i.e. God is Love, this somehow conflicts with the attributes you describe as pre-eminent.
          Dave, from that quote, you can see that you’re violating Jefferson’s special rules for this thread:
          Originally posted by Jefferson
          …refer to the Opening Post arguments that the definition of Goodness is not external from God, and not arbitrary.
          Yes, I’ve engaged on the tangents you reference, and yes, I’ve been rude urging others to not reply to such tangents in this thread. And I’m going to do it again… here :

          Love is not antecedent to, it does not precede, the will. A person’s will is exercised before love can operate. Jesus loved us by going to the cross. He did not have to go. He went willingly. Christ's love follows the exercise of His will. Love is commitment to the good of someone, and that commitment must be active (faithfulness is an ability, not an inability).

          The preeminent attributes of the only and eternal God proceed from their prerequisites.

          1st: God is Living. [He is not a celestial battery or power; nor is He matter.]
          2nd: He is Personal. [He is not plant, or a bacterium; He has a will.]
          3rd: He is Relational. [He is not unitarian, like the Hindu Purusha or Allah.]
          4th: He is Good. [Requires a will; He could not know that He were good unless He was relational; see O.P.]
          5th: He is Loving. [He extends His goodness toward persons.]

          A living being can love. Anything non-living cannot love.
          A loving being, like an angel, can fall, and continue living, but stop loving.
          Thus life is antecedent to love.

          A living and personal being can do evil. Anything non-personal cannot do evil.
          Thus life and personality are antecedent to morality.

          Love is a commitment to the good of someone. Anything unable to make a commitment (anything lacking a will, which means it is not a person), or anyone who does not know what Good is (like the non-existent unitarian Allah), cannot love.
          Thus Personhood (includes a will) and Goodness (requires relationship) are antecedent to love.

          Dave, you’ve already indicated you disagree with all this. If you want to pursue those arguments or others in your post (which do not answer the arbitrariness accusation of Socrates; see O.P.), please put them in the Euthyphro Companion Thread. Thanks!

          -Pastor Bob Enyart
          Denver Bible Church
          Last edited by Bob Enyart; April 5, 2008, 03:08 PM.
          The Bob Enyart Live talk show airs at KGOV.com weekdays at 5 pm E.T. Also, same time, same station, check out Theology Thursday (.com) and on Fridays, Real Science Radio (.com) a.k.a. rsr.org. All shows are available 24/7 and you can call us at at 1-800-8Enyart.

          Comment


          • #35
            That an argument is logically consistent, or valid, isn't at all sufficient to assert its conclusions as truth. If the premises aren't true, then the argument isn't sound, and the conclusions might be false.

            In this case, the argument hinges on the properties of the Trinity, which Bob acknowledges as a mystery. So the premises are "mysterious" assertions that one must simply accept in order to agree with the argument.

            This is no better than simply asserting that it's a mystery how a single god can affirm his own moral authority, but that it is nevertheless so.

            That it's possible to perform this rationalization while maintaining "consistency" with the Bible is hardly surprising. Valid logic is applied to the Bible to justify all kinds of contrary positions.
            Cogito, ergo spud. I think, therefore I yam.

            Democracy -- 3 wolves and 2 sheep deciding on what's for dinner.

            I'm just a single religious experience away from total conversion.

            Comment


            • #36
              Skeptech: given Christianity’s triune premise, the flaw in the O.P. is...

              TOL moderators copied Skeptech’s above post from the Euthyprho Companion Thread to this thread.
              Originally posted by skeptech
              That an argument is logically consistent, or valid, isn't at all sufficient to assert its conclusions as truth. If the premises aren't true, then the argument isn't sound, and the conclusions might be false.
              Since cars can fly backward through time, and since cars exist, therefore time travel is possible.

              Skeptech, you are correct of course!

              But then... oops, you wrote:
              Originally posted by skeptech
              In this [Christian Answer to Euthyphro] case, the argument hinges on the properties of the Trinity, which Bob acknowledges as a mystery. So the premises are "mysterious" assertions that one must simply accept in order to agree with the argument.
              False. The only Euthyphro question here is whether Socrates’ logical argument falsifies the premises of Christianity. Whether they can be falsified some other way (1 Cor. 15:14) is not at issue.

              Let me repeat the correct part of your post, and give you a reciprocal truth that you’re forgetting:
              Originally posted by skeptech
              That an argument is logically consistent, or valid, isn't at all sufficient to assert its conclusions as truth.
              Then remember Skeptech: if an argument against a given premise is falsified, that argument should be rejected, regardless of the validity of the premise.

              Intellectual honesty demands discarding falsified arguments. Otherwise you’ll knowingly defend illogical and even fictitious arguments against disagreeable claims.

              Skeptech, I believe the following are your only intellectually honest responses:
              1. Given the premise of Christianity’s triune God, the flaw in the O.P. argument is __________.
              2. I can’t find a flaw in the O.P logic, but I hope that someone else can, so I’ll suspend using Euthyphro.
              3. Christianity answers Euthyphro showing that the Trinity can non-arbitrarily define goodness.

              Here on TOL, we are testing and answering the logical claims of Euthyphro. Socrates’ argument disproved the popular claims about the Greek pantheon. I don't know if the philosopher ever traveled to Mount Olympus (we did, in 2006, on our Bible Tour of Greece), or climbed to its summit looking for the daughters of Zeus. Such was not the nature of Socrates' investigation; he made a logical argument. The O.P. demonstrates that the Euthyphro Dilemma fails with regards to Christianity, where the eternally corroborating threefold testimony negates the need for an external standard to avoid defining goodness by fiat. The O.P. doesn’t assume that an atheist reader would believe in the Trinity (of course not), nor even that atheists who acknowledge that we’ve answered Euthyphro would therefore confess belief in God.

              Skeptech, I have only looked at this single post of yours, so I don’t know what else you may have written about this. But if you are able to, please test our argument by attempting to demonstrate how the Trinity doesn’t answer Euthyphro, logically.

              -Pastor Bob Enyart
              Denver Bible Church & KGOV.com
              Last edited by Bob Enyart; April 16, 2008, 08:08 AM.
              The Bob Enyart Live talk show airs at KGOV.com weekdays at 5 pm E.T. Also, same time, same station, check out Theology Thursday (.com) and on Fridays, Real Science Radio (.com) a.k.a. rsr.org. All shows are available 24/7 and you can call us at at 1-800-8Enyart.

              Comment


              • #37
                I think you have to go with the Command theory.

                The fact that we have a conscious does not mean we have an infallible moral compass. Even within the Bible, the same actions are viewed as moral or immoral over time.

                The idea that the trinity provides some sort of external standard fails because Christianity does not recognize 3 gods, but one. If God is one then no external standard exists. Only if there were 3 Gods, and one of them were independent of this creation, and the other two subservient to that supreme God, would there be any independent basis for morality - though this would only kick the problem up a level (is something good because the supreme god willed it, or because the supreme god recognizes an independent authority).

                This is like saying that the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branch has legitimacy based some authority they themselves agreed to. They don't, of course, as they all 3 derive their authority from the Constitution, and ultimately from the people.

                In this case, since there is no "Constitution" for morals, only the the Divine Command approach will work for Christian theology. If that leaves goodness open to the charge of arbitrariness, then that is how it is - and there is biblical support for the idea.
                When a person needs to motivate folks to believe things that are not true (in the religious, political or economic realm), you'll find them attacking science.

                Comment


                • #38
                  I disagree with you beration of the Muslim tadition. It shows you are completely intoloerant of any other traditions other than your own. To make your argument a little less right winged white christian, I think you should include that the followers of Christianity do not always reflect their God. To make a strong argument against something, you must attack the strongest point, spouting right winged beliefs does not show you to be promoting the goodness of the Judeo-Christian religion but ratherm shows you as ill-informed and misleading

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Bob Enyart View Post
                    Skeptech, I believe the following are your only intellectually honest responses:
                    1. Given the premise of Christianity’s triune God, the flaw in the O.P. argument is __________.
                    2. I can’t find a flaw in the O.P logic, but I hope that someone else can, so I’ll suspend using Euthyphro.
                    3. Christianity answers Euthyphro showing that the Trinity can non-arbitrarily define goodness.
                    Bob, I have a fourth alternative: I accept the logic of the OP, but point out that it's based on the premise of a Trinity that has attributes noted to be "mysterious;" and that it's facile to assemble a valid proof of virtually any conclusion desired when based on such a premise.

                    The conclusion that God can know what is right via the Trinity is vacuous because you have asserted that the Trinity has this power, the basis for which is that it's a mystery!

                    The only Euthyphro question here is whether Socrates’ logical argument falsifies the premises of Christianity.
                    For those who accept your interpretation of this mysterious power, your explanation can be fulfilling. But being a mystery, multiple consistent explanations are possible; and for the rest of us, it's all a bit lacking.
                    Cogito, ergo spud. I think, therefore I yam.

                    Democracy -- 3 wolves and 2 sheep deciding on what's for dinner.

                    I'm just a single religious experience away from total conversion.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by s_m_f View Post
                      I disagree with you beration of the Muslim tadition. It shows you are completely intoloerant of any other traditions other than your own. To make your argument a little less right winged white christian, I think you should include that the followers of Christianity do not always reflect their God. To make a strong argument against something, you must attack the strongest point, spouting right winged beliefs does not show you to be promoting the goodness of the Judeo-Christian religion but ratherm shows you as ill-informed and misleading
                      Is it wrong to be intolerant?
                      fidelis usque ad mortem

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        A Shift, not an Answer

                        Bob, your article basically concedes the whole argument in your third paragraph below the heading "Divine Command View," when you write that "moral laws are discovered, not invented." Unless you are adding the parenthetical condition, "that is, they are discovered by everyone except God," then presumably, that principle applies to everyone, God included. If it does not apply to God, we should know why you would leave Him out.

                        Your answer to the "anterior standard" horn of the dilemma seems to consist of several points. One notes that God is consistent. Not to be flippant, but so was Michael Corleone. Another notes that God contains many persons and that these all corroborate each other. The same, again, could be said of the Corleone family.

                        Finally, you note that God has committed to doing what is "in the best interests" of his creation, that He has never deviated from this, and that all persons of the Trinity would support this perfect record, not only toward creation but toward each other.

                        That still does not answer the question of what "best interest" consists of and whether it is commanded or discovered. At this point, you seem content to declare the dilemma resolved because God is apparently his own standard of righteousness. But that puts us back at the same point we started, because we then have to decide why we call it "righteousness"--by command or discovery?

                        You get close to an answer when you refer to Michael Jordan and note that it would be idle to say that only Michael Jordan was Michael Jordan. Quite true, and the only thing that gives it meaning is that anyone who says such a thing must be referring to a standard anterior to Michael. You seem to think this needn't apply to God, but I fail to see why.

                        Your argument is interesting in its distinction between a Trinitarian and Unitarian God and because it doesn't fall back on the unspoken assumption apparent in many Christian arguments that "God is right because He's bigger than us and we'd better do what He says." But I can't see that you've ever given a reason for deciding what "right" is in the first place--on God's part or ours. I'm not saying it doesn't exist--only that there has to be a standard for deciding what it *is.* If that standard flows from God's being, then we might as well praise someone for being tall or having red hair. If the standard is decreed, then you are right to call it arbitrary. If it is discovered, then it had to be discovered by God as much as anyone else. If you think otherwise, I would be interested to know why.
                        Last edited by MichaelHuggins; May 26, 2008, 11:16 AM. Reason: Transposition of two words in original

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Hi Bob. Thanks for your thoughtful post. I haven't read the rest of the posts so I apologize if someone has already brought this up, but I was thinking about your argument in terms of Occam's Razor. The point of Euthrypho's Dilemma is that once a theist recognizes that morality stands on its own, God is superfluous. Yes, your explanation is logically consistent, but it makes volumes of assumptions that have no reason to exist except to make your argument logically consistent.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            First, a reminder of what is at stake:

                            Originally posted by Bob Enyart View Post
                            Thus by the recorded judgment of Jesus Christ Himself, if Euthyphro's dilemma is ultimately unanswerable then Christianity is falsified.
                            Originally posted by Bob Enyart View Post
                            So then if Euthyphro's second option is invalid, and if Socrates did not leave out other plausible solutions, then for Christianity to be true the first horn must be correct.
                            Originally posted by Bob Enyart View Post
                            If the standard for righteousness emanates from outside of God, He would not be the ultimate authority, and thus the God we believe in would not exist.
                            Now, in order to stay on topic, I will use your own outline for an "intellectually honest answer" and select option #1:

                            1. Given the premise of Christianity’s triune God, the flaw in the O.P. argument is __________.

                            Now I will fill in the blank.

                            Given the premise of Christianity's triune God, the flaw in the O.P. argument is that the necessary testimony of the three witness is hearsay and that the simple presense of 3 witnesses is sufficient for truth to be established and therefore the assertion that the first horn must be true is not fulfilled. Also, the standard for truth of a witness account is not simply the number of witnesses but a judgement from someone other than the witnesses that the testimony is valid evidence or that the testimony even took place. This violates the third quote above that says "If the standard for righteousness emanates from outside of God, He would not be the ultimate authority, and thus the God we believe in would not exist." If a witness is allowed to judge the truth of another witness then we are back to the command horn that you have already rejected. A true witness can not judge the veracity of other witnesses. Only a judge who is not also a witness can do that. This is why judges that are part of cases cannot preside over their own case. Also, for evidence to not be heresay, the witness must be available for cross-examination. The bible is the only record of said testimony and the veracity of that document is not proven. Nor is it clear that the 3 parts of the triune actually submitted the testimony you claim in support of the other 2. The fact that three parts are capable of providing witness doesn't mean they did or that this testimony would pass basic tests of submission as evidence based on rules of hearsay.

                            Without denying the premise of the trinity, I have shown the flaw in your argument and Christianity is now falsified. Your only intellectually honest responses are:
                            1) To admit I have fulfilled the challenge and declare Christianity as false.
                            2) Show how I have made an error.
                            3) Retract your statement that you believe this discussion can prove or disprove Christianity and we must look elsewhere.
                            Last edited by LosingMyReligion; May 29, 2008, 02:36 PM. Reason: Spelling
                            When the facts change, I change my opinion. What do you do sir? - John Maynard Keynes

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Bob Enyart View Post
                              As I argued in the OP, if theologians had invented the Trinity to answer Socrates, the temptation would be strong to dismiss the claim as a convenient secondary assumption like the inflationary period of the Big Bang. But the plurality of the Godhead is well attested from Genesis 1:1 as described above.
                              This assumes that the dilemma didn't exist as a concept prior to Genesis 1:1 being written. Just because Socrates voiced the dilemma later doesn't matter. Nor does the attempt for science to broaden its understanding of something when new data comes in automatically mean that it is a lie or convenient. These are logical fallacies on your part. By the timeline measure, it's convenient that Jesus came later to complete the concept of the trinity.

                              You have simply declared that your argument isn't circular but have failed to say how. If your witnesses are god then they could arbitrarily testify which brings you back to the command view you rejected. That is the very definition of circular. Several people have posted valid responses to you and you merely reject them out of hand. Were you ever going to accept an answer? You have bet the whole farm on the joint testimony of the godhead but then fail to see that the godhead, by your own measurement, can't participate in that which eventually becomes the measure of morality, i.e. the testimony.

                              Thanks for trying.
                              When the facts change, I change my opinion. What do you do sir? - John Maynard Keynes

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