ChristianJR4 sent me the video of the trailer. You should subscribe to his YouTube channel, he posts amazing stuff quite often.
You can read more about this debate here, including ordering info.
11/15/2009 • 10:00 AM 0
11/14/2009 • 10:00 AM 1
On April 4, 2009, William Lane Craig and Christopher Hitchens met at Biola University to debate the question of God’s existence. Craig is one of the world’s foremost Christian apologists. Hitchens is a leading spokesman for the “new atheism” movement.
In front of an overflow crowd and a global internet audience, they debated the origin and design of the universe, the implications of human morality, the deity of Jesus, and the validity of Christ’s resurrection. It was a compelling clash of worldviews and an examination of the major arguments for and against Christianity and atheism.
This two-DVD set captures every moment of the debate (documented by 10 cameras). Bonus features include the pre-debate press conference, a question-and-answer session, and interviews with Hitchens and Craig.
Does God Exist is a vital resource for anyone who doubts the Christian faith-or seeks convincing evidence to defend it.
Here’s the trailer: (H/T ChristianJR4)
I wrote a play by play of the debate here, and you can watch a sample video here. You can also read about Craig’s recent debate on the viability of intelligent design with Francisco Ayala here. The post has some video and the full audio for that debate.
The Wilson-Hitchens debate
And don’t forget that you can get the Wilson-Hitchens debate from Amazon.com. You can see a trailer for the Wilson-Hitchens DVD here. Brian Auten told me that it is definitely worth buying. You can also read a different Wilson-Hitchens debate here, which occurred in written form – this is not the one in the video.
04/18/2009 • 5:00 AM 3
This is from the recent debate held at Biola University between Dr. William Lane Craig, and Christopher Hitchens.
By the way, don’t forget to check out my play-by-play of the debate here, and other reviews of the debate here. I also wrote a play-by-play of the recent debate at Columbia University in February 2009 between Craig and Yale philosopher Shelly Kagan. The topic there was “Is God Necessary for Morality?”
If you missed Dr. Craig debating on the Michael Coren show in Canada, check out these video clips posted by ChristianJR4, located below the fold. You have to click the link to display the rest of the post to see them.
Read the rest of this entry »
04/05/2009 • 10:33 AM 0
Information about how to get the audio and video of the debate will be posted here, later.
My written summary of the debate is here. It’s really a play-by-play of every statement made.
Doug Geivett’s review of the debate
Doug Geivett’s excellent summary of the debate is here. This is a comprehensive summary!
The Pugnacious Irishman
The Pugnacious Irishman has a super summary of the debate. (He attended it) In addition, he has some very welcome comments about the general task of apologetics.
As I’ve said before (third part of a three part series. To get the whole of my presentation, you need to read the first two parts as well.), this is a gigantic red herring, and confuses epistemology with metaphysics/ontology. Craig was asking, “how can an atheist ground his moral beliefs?” not “how can an atheist behave morally without believing in God?” Those are two totally different questions. In the absence of a good God that grounds morality, well, the atheist might think he’s behaving morally, but he’s just attaching words without meaning to his actions..actually, the same goes for the theist! Without God, all anyone ever does is act in ways we call morality, but our words are meaningless. The moral sense that we have (that Hitchens claims develops via evolution) is merely an illusion that aids our survival…that’s what you get if you follow the atheistic premises where they lead.
And towards the end of the post:
The highlight of the debate for me was when Craig made an evangelistic appeal to both Hitchens and the non believers in the audience. Of course, Hitchens wasn’t just gonna bow the knee right there, but this underscores a proper view of apologetics: it is an evangelistic, missionary enterprise.
I frequently hear Christians dismiss apologetical ventures because “its all just arguing about words. You can’t win anyone to Christ with an argument. Only the Holy Spirit can do that. It’s all head and no heart and is totally irrelevant to my life.”
First, I think anyone watching tonight could see Craig’s character and fervent love for the Lord. I’ve seen the same for many Christian philosophers and apologists on the intellectual front lines. They are winsome and attractive ambassadors, as Koukl says. This puts that last objection (it’s all head and no heart) in it’s place.
Secondly, *nothing* in isolation can win someone to Christ without the Spirit, not even love or acts of service. But people are won over to Christ with arguments all the time when they are used by the Holy Spirit. With the Holy Spirit’s help, they are quite potent.
Of course, if someone doesn’t care for the lost, he won’t care about any of this either…but that’s another discussion.
I would like to see TPI post something about that “other discussion”!
Check out my analysis of the 11 arguments Hitchens made in his opening speech in his debate with Frank Turek. You can also watch or listen to a preview debate that was held in Dallas recently between Craig, Hitchens, Lee Strobel and some other people. Biola also officially live-blogged the debate here.
Some book reviews of Hitchens’ book by Melinda Penner and Doug Groothuis are here.
For more on the arguments used in the debate, see my index of arguments here.
UPDATE: Looks like this has been picked up by Breitbart here.
BY THE WAY: If you enjoyed Bill Craig’s performance in his debate, why not stop by his Reasonable Faith web site and leave him a donation? He won that debate through months and months of preparation. So, when you fund his research, you really are helping him to go out there and do his job well. Won’t you consider helping Bill in his work?
04/04/2009 • 11:49 PM 59
UPDATE: The video of the debate has been posted:
TOPIC: DOES GOD EXIST?
MY NOTES ON THE DEBATE: (WC = William Lane Craig, CH = Christopher Hitchens)
WC opening speech:
WC makes two contentions:
- there are no good arguments for atheism
- there are good arguments for theism
These topics are IRRELEVANT tonight:
- social impact of christianity
- morality of Old Testament passages
- biblical inerrancy
- the debate is whether god (a creator and designer of the universe) exists
1. cosmological argument
- an actually infinite number of past events is impossible
- number of past events must be finite
- therefore universe has a beginning
- the beginning of the universe is confirmed by science - universe began to exist from nothing
- space, time, matter, energy began at the big bang
- the creation of the universe requires a cause
- the cause is uncaused, timeless, spaceless, powerful
- the cause must be beyond space and time, because it created space and time
- the cause is not physical, because it created all matter and energy
- but there are only two kinds of non-physical cause: abstract objects or minds
- abstract objects don’t cause effects
- therefore must be mind
2. teleological argument
- fine-tuned constants and ratios
- constants not determined by laws of nature
- also, there are arbitrary quantities
- constants and quantities are in narrow range of life-permitting values
- an example: if the weak force were different by 1 in 10 to the 100, then no life
- there are 3 explanations: physical law or chance or design
- not due to law: because constants and quantities are independent of the laws
- not due to chance: the odds are too high for chance
- therefore, due to design
- the atheist response is the world ensemble (multiverse)
- but world ensemble has unobservable universes, no evidence that they exist
- and world ensemble contradicts scientific observations we have today
3. moral argument
- objective moral values are values that exist regardless of what humans think
- objective values are not personal preferences
- objective values are not evolved standards that cultures have depending on time and place
- objective moral values and duties exist
- objective moral values and duties require a moral lawgiver
4. argument from resurrection miracle
- resurrection implies miracle
- miracle implies God
- 3 minimal facts pass the historical tests (early attestation, eyewitness testimony, multiple attestation, etc.)
- minimal fact 1: empty tomb
- minimal fact 2: appearances
- minimal fact 3: early belief in the resurrection
- jewish theology prohibits a dying messiah – messiah is not supposed to die
- jewish theology has a general resurrection of everybody, there is not supposed to be a resurrection of one person
- jewish theology certainly does not predict a single resurrection of the messiah after he dies
- therefore, the belief in the resurrection is unlikely to have been invented
- disciples were willing to die for that belief in the resurrection
- naturalistic explanations don’t work for the 3 minimal facts
5. properly basic belief in god
- religious experience is properly basic
- it’s just like the belief in the external world, grounded in experience
- in the absence of defeaters, those experiences are valid
Conclusion: What CH must do:
- destroy all 5 of WC’s arguments
- erect his own case in its place
CH opening speech:
1. evolution disproves biological design argument
- evolution disproves paley’s argument for a watchmaker
2. god wouldn’t have done it that way
- god wouldn’t have waited that long before the incarnation
- mass extinction and death before Jesus
- god wouldn’t have allowed humans to have almost gone extinct a while back in africa
- why insist that this wasteful and incompetent history of life is for us, that’s a bad design
- the universe is so vast, why would god need so much space, that’s a bad design
- there is too much destruction in the universe, like exploding stars – that’s a bad design
- the heat death of the universe is a bad design
- too many of the other planets don’t support life, that’s a bad design
- the sun is going to become a red giant and incinerate us, that’s a bad design
3. hitchens’ burden of proof
- there is no good reason that supports the existence of god
- all arguments for god can be explained without god
- atheists can’t prove there is no god
- but they can prove there is no good argument for god
4. craig’s scientific arguments don’t go far enough, they only prove deism, not theism
- the scientific arguments don’t prove prayer works
- the scientific arguments don’t prove specific moral teachings of christianity
5. if the laws of physics are so great then miracles shouldn’t be allowed
- good laws and miracles seem to be in contradiction
6. extraordinary claims need extraordinary evidence
- none of craig’s evidence was extraordinary
7. science can change, so craig can’t use the progress of science
- it’s too early for craig to use the big bang and fine-tuning
- the big bang and fine-tuning evidences are too new
- they could be overturned by the progress of science
8. craig wrote in his book that the internal conviction of god’s existence should trump contradicting evidence
- but then he isn’t forming his view based on evidence
- he refuses to let evidence disprove his view
- but then how can atheists be to blame if they don’t believe
- so evidence is not really relevant to accepting theism
9. the progress of science has disproved religion
- christianity taught that earth was center of the universe
- but then cosmology disproved that
Response to the big bang and fine-tuning arguments:
- was there pre-existing material?
- who designed the designer?