More fun and games with Challenge My Church

Over the last few months, I’ve engaged with @ChallengeChurch on twitter, and on this blog about varying subjects, but mostly entertaining logical failures and god of the gaps fallacies. I’ve also taken to mocking and pointing out the obvious flaws in their religious statements. But mostly mocking. It amuses me to no end that an organisation (possibly one person), who has so little understanding of “things”, actively invites challenge.

This occasional “debate” and mockery at the hands of myself and fellow atheists has prompted them (possible him/her) to address it in a new blog entry here, entitled CMC VS Athiests (Yes, they are still spelling it wrong).

Normally this type of “argument” would not warrant a response, but what it lacks in valid points, it compensates for un-unintentional humour. It’s worth pointing out before I address some points individually that @ChallengeChurch bases every single argument on a fallacy of “You can’t explain X, therefore God”. There is never any attempt to present evidence for the claims made, but rather questions and false assumptions about out current scientific understanding of the natural order.

I don’t need to go into detail how this argument doesn’t stand up, except to say atheists accept science doesn’t explain everything, but they also accept that stating “god did it” explains nothing.

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“If Evolution is True, Why Are There Still Monkeys?”

This “question” is often a mild source of frustration for me, which can, on occasion manifest into episodes of chronic rage and indiscriminate violence, but not entirely for the reasons you may imagine.

It’s not the complete lack of understanding in regards to common ancestry and evolution that gets my sacrificial goat; it’s the Incomprehensible levels of arrogance that the question alone indicates.

Now, this may come as a surprise to some, but I’m not actually a scientist. No, honestly.

I would consider myself someone with an average level of academic ability. This is why I find it useful to defer the shortcomings of my own knowledge to experts who endeavour to seek the truth, via credible and robust methods of observation, study and testing. I believe this makes it possible to consider myself informed. This to me seems a reasonable method of learning what…is.

I do think it’s important to have patience with people when such ignorance is a result of naivety or lack of education, but unfortunately, this question never takes the form of a sincere desire to learn the answer. It is void of all inquisitiveness. In fact, it’s not even intended as a question. It’s a smirking premature declaration of victory by the poser. They believe, in one act of intellectual superiority, they have destroyed Darwin and flipped scientific understanding on its head. That’s some feat. Bravo!

It’s this extraordinarily high regard for ones own intellect that I find mind-blowing, especially given the subject matter of the question. In fact, you don’t even need to understand the theory of evolution (which they don’t) to deduce that you must be mistaken in your questions premise, or at the least, short of a few key pieces of key information.

Let’s have a look at some things you must assume about yourself/knowledge to even put forward this question, or perhaps should have considered before asking it:

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Update On “Discussion” with @ChallengeChurch

I recently engaged in a discussion with twitter user @ChallengeChurch, on this post which claimed “Science backs up Genesis 1”, among other considerable failings in rational thought.  My feelings on this can be found here.

A further cringe inducing response was made by @ChallengeChurch, titled A response to “@gspellerchecker” (the irony) which is a rogues gallery of the usual fallacies put forward by the less informed theist.

I will address some of the “points” made.  There is nothing new unfortunately, and each one falls into well established, rudimentary fallacy territory.

So if science sets out to disprove stuff, they have not YET disproved
the creation story

It is not the job of science to disprove every claim made.  It is YOUR claim, it is YOUR responsibility to prove it.  This is known as “The Burden Of Proof”.  Please take time to educate yourself on how this means your claim lacks credibility.

For example, science is YET to disprove the existence of fairies.  Does this lend credibility to their existence?  This is precisely the strength of your flawed argument.  For clarification, please see below:

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“Science Backs Up Genesis 1”: A Response

It may come as a surprise to some that I’m always mildly excited to receive the views of the faithful.  It often provides me with a source of amusement unobtainable elsewhere.  I recall the late and great Christopher Hitchens once remarking that he never grew tired of debating the godly as “You never know what they will say next”.

This brings me to the topic of this post.  In my eternal search for amusement and my part-time hobby of pointing out the spelling related shortcomings of the supernaturally inclined, I stumbled across the following claim:

When I pressed @ChallengeChurch for further details, they were kind enough to direct me towards their blog, which I was told would provide further details.  The related post may be viewed (laughed at)  here.

I think it is apparent to any thinking individual that there is a fundamental lack of understanding of what is meant by the word “science” and how it is used to know… things.

Science discovers what is, and tries to disprove it.  If it can’t, we accept those findings as fact.  It is a slight to anyones intelligence therefore, to discount scientific findings, except in the instances you feel corroborate your beliefs, which, in this case they don’t.

Let’s take a look at some of the extraordinary claims made, and the thought process behind them (or lack thereof):

In the beginning God created the heavens and earth. Genesis 1:1 – The
big bang theory in a nutshell.

If nutshell meant “in the mind of a nut”, this statement would be accurate.  Please elaborate on how the book of genesis describes and details, with adherence to the scientific method what facts we now hold regarding The Big Bang, or I shall dismiss this claim as nonsense.

What then follows in the book of Genesis is what science and historians
call evolution. If you look closely at what came and when, there had to
be some strategic thinking.

Why? Natural selection is a simple and proven component of evolution, overwhelmingly accepted by the scientific community.  Please provide some credible evidence for intelligent design, or I shall dismiss this claim as nonsense.

Then came the trees and the vegetation, common sense tells me that
someone had an idea of long-term survival. Every living being from the
beginning of time to eternity needs these basics to survive.

Perhaps then, you can explain why 99.9% of all species that have ever been on earth are now extinct?  Life on earth began 3.8 billion years ago, something which your holy book gets as wrong as you would expect from a text “authored” by a group of semi-literate desert dwellers.  Please provide evidence for your claim of “common sense”, or I shall dismiss it as nonsense.

Then came the animals, well first attempt was the dinosaurs, possibly
God didn’t like them, or thought that were too dangerous to be around a
later creation.

This sincerely does not merit a response, except to say I apologise if you are not an adult, as this resembles something you would expect to find scribbled in crayon.  This is clearly, nonsense.

Genesis speaks of a Garden of Eden, archeological evidence has proven
this garden exists and that the forbidden tree still stands – dead but
it is still there.

Please provide me with the source of this “archeological evidence”.  Furthermore, for clarity, you accept human life began in a magic garden with a talking snake?  Please backup these claims, or they will be dismissed as nonsense.

I am afraid that from every source I
have read it is ‘timing’ and ‘God’ that are the source of why Atheists
believe God doesn’t exist.

Then you clearly do not read frequently.  Not only is there no evidence for a creator, let alone one who intervenes, or is interested in human affairs, but there is an overwhelming amount of evidence refuting the claims of any holy text at every single turn.  Atheist are generally of the viewpoint that if reasonable evidence for a creator is provided, then our views are subject to change.  The faithful ignores what contradictory evidence is presented in order to maintain their faith.  This is commonly referred to as “ignorance”.

In closing, it’s fair to say I enjoy deconstructing a well thought out case for a creator,  this however, was not one.  Science, by any stretch of the imagination, does not validate any claims of the supernatural.

What you state is purely faith-based, which is to say, belief without evidence.  Have your beliefs, but be decent enough to call them what they are.  Invoking science when you feel it confirms your nonsense is not only dishonest, but you won’t get away with it.  If I believed the things stated in your blog, I would avoid any mention of the word “science” as it only serves to demonstrate your lack of understanding, and possibly education.

Peace

GS

@GSpellchecker

Thank You

Hi,

My twitter account @GSpellchecker has been suspended without reason/notification.  I have filed a ticket with twitter and I’m currently awaiting a response.

I just wanted to say a huge thank you for all the mentions/rallying on twitter.  Massively heart warming and appreciated.

I will provide information on myself and any other account suspension when it becomes available.

Thanks again,

I’ll be back

GS

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