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provides evidence to support a claim but doesn't prove it



adds to a claim that isn't always true (must be tested)


teological argument

1. the world contains order, regularity, purpose and beauty
2. an object with these properties must be designed
3. the world is an object with these properties
C. the world must have been designed by God



attempt to make an argument based on analogy (comparison of 2 things)


natural theory

deriving knowledge of God from the use of natural human reason


revealed theory

deriving knowledge from contact with God through a vision or scripture


Saint Anselm

- father of Scholasticism
- creator of ontological argument


ontological argument

apriori, reason, analytic and deductive


analytic propositions

statements that are true by definition


synthetic propositions

add something to our knowledge and are normally based on experience


Anselm's definition of God

God is that than which nothing greater can be conceived


Ontological argument 1

1. definition of God
2. a being which exists in reality is greater than a being which exists only in intellect
C1. the concept of God is surpassed by an existent God
C2. so God must exist


Ontological argument 2

1. God is the greatest conceivable being
2. it's greater to have necessary existence than to have contingent existence
C. necessary existence must be a unique property of the greatest conceivable (God)



relies on other things to exist


Aquinas' objection (ontological)

- God's true definition cannot be known to humans
- we can only talk about him figuratively
- "God exists is not self evident to us"


teleological argument properties

inductive, synthetic, aposterior (Aquinas)


Paleys argument

- if we saw a watch we would assume it was created
- just because we don't know the purpose doesn't mean there isn't one
- the complexity of the natural world couldn't have been an accident


mechanistic argument

1. we can infer a complex object with many parts was designed as it contains the qualities of regularity and purpose
2. the world also contains these qualities and has many complex parts
3. we may infer the world was designed
C. God is the designer



- first exponent of evolution
- the complexity of the world can be explained by natural selection


James Sadowsky

God may have created the process of evolution as a means of bringing order and purpose into the universe


intelligent design

- scientists argue that Darwin was wrong
- organisms display irreducible complexity that can't be explained through natural selection


David Hume - teleological

- we have no experience of the world making
- arguments from analogy can only be suggestive not conclusive
- evidence cannot prove the God of classical theism


F.R. Tennant quote

nature is meaningless and valueless without God behind it and man in front


Anthropic principle

1. the emergence of human life in our universe depends on numerous factors like planetary conditions and physics
2. human life has emerged
3. a life friendly universe is highly improbable
4. a designer or intelligent creator would make sense of our improbable universe


the new design argument

Richard Swinburne
- scientists can define laws and say how they work
- they cannot find a basis for the most fundamental laws in the first place
- science cannot explain order in the world, so it must be God


Aquinas first way

- everything depends on something else to put it into motion from action to potentiality
- nothing can be moved by itself , so God was the first mover


Aquinas second way

- everything has an efficient cause as it cannot cause itself
- the first efficient cause was God


Aquinas third way

- it's not possible for everything to have existed forever
- God is the necessary being that started everything
- based on contingency and necessity


Kalam cosmological argument

developed by al Ghazali
1. 'actual infinites' are impossible
2. the universe cannot be infinite
3. it must have had a beginning and cause of existence


William Lane Craig

1. the universe had a beginning
2. that beginning was caused
3. that cause was personal (choice)
4. therefore God chose to create the world