The Christian God, in fact, many gods, are said to have these absolute qualities that make them not just superior to everything else, but logically impossible.
Most well known gods are what is sometimes referred to as ‘OOO,’ meaning that they are omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent. But that’s just the beginning of it. These gods are said to be perfect, incomprehensibly amazing, and clearly superior to every other force, being, or energy in the universe.
Obviously, when playing with absolutes, problems occur. And in this post I will be presenting a few of them. First off, I must note that it would make much more sense if these gods are not OOO, especially the Christian one, who shows surprise and anger over things that he already knew would happen, and was unable to make Judah win the war in Judges 1:19.
Take for instance the claim that God is infinite, what with infinite power, infinite knowledge and infinite ‘Glory’. So he must be both infinitely merciful and infinitely just, right? Well, if God is infinitely just he will give everyone what they deserve, and if he is infinitely merciful he will let everyone off. The two are incompatible.
I have already talked about omnibenevolence and the problem of evil here, so I don’t think there is a need to go on about evil and all of that, so I will focus on omnipotence.
First off, can God create a rock, or any object really, that he cannot lift? It is a simple, straightforward question, and it exposes the issues that arise with ultimate, absolute qualities. If you say he can create a rock that he cannot lift, he is not omnipotent because he cannot lift it. But if he cannot create such a rock, then he is still not omnipotent! Again, I think it is not just perfectly reasonable, but more true to the Bible for God to not be OOO. One way of dealing this problem is to say that God is only able to do what is logically possible, but this is redefining the term ‘omnipotent’ and therefor is a cop-out, meaning that God is not omnipotent at all, but has some other quality that is *nearly* all-powerful.
The omnipotence of God is also one of the main factors used in the problem of evil, but if God was not all powerful he couldn’t stop evil (to some degree), thus ending the argument. The only other explanation is that God is not omnibenevolent, which also makes perfect sense, what with God being OK with the murders of so many people in the Bible. More on that on the link I posted earlier.
Sure, the notion of an all-powerful, amazing god is a great idea, and I can certainly see why people like it, but with no limits on his power logical impossibilities occur.
To further explain my point about a non OOO god being truer to the Bible, I can point to places in Genesis where God asks Adam where he is, as if he doesn’t know, and ‘comes down’ to places to see what is going on. It is perfectly reasonable to have a god that is just very powerful, very loving, and with a large but finite amount of knowledge.
But then again, the more illogical God is, the easier it is for us atheists!
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