Philosophy and Religion – Final Exam Study Guide
What is religious faith supposed to do for you?
The “human problem” and its “solution”
Some important religious beliefs:
There is a God
Who created the universe
Who is all powerful, all-knowing, and perfectly good
Who wants us to love and serve him
We will live on after our bodies die
Some of us will end up in heaven, some in hell
Alternatively: we have had many different lives in many different bodies, and will have many more
That there is a truth, even if it’s hard to know what it is
1. Does the earth go around the sun?
2. Does spinach taste good?
3. Does the universe have a Creator?
Question 3 is more like question 1 than like question 2
Does truth matter?
The case of suicide bombers
The concept of God
Omnipotence, omniscience, perfect goodness, eternity
Giving reasons for thinking that some proposition is true
(Premises and conclusion)
“If there is no God, then what’s so special about human beings? They’re just accidental by-products of nature
which have evolved relatively recently on an infinitesimal speck of dust called the planet Earth, lost somewhere in a
hostile and mindless universe, and which are doomed to perish individually and collectively in a relatively short
time. On the atheistic view, if you can escape the social consequences, there’s nothing really wrong with your
raping someone. And thus without God there is no absolute right and wrong which imposes itself on our conscience.
But the fact is that objective values do exist, and we all know it. There is no more reason to deny the objective
reality of moral values than the objective reality of physical objects. Actions like rape, torture, child abuse aren’t
just socially unacceptable behavior. They’re moral abominations. Some things are really wrong. Similarly, love,
equality, self-sacrifice are really good. But if objective values cannot exist without God and objective values do
exist, then it follows logically and inescapably that God exists.”
-William Lane Craig
William Lane Craig (Example 1):
There are objective moral values
If there were no God, there would be no objective moral values
Therefore God exists
Are the premises true?
How much support, if any, do they provide for the conclusion?
Why accept 2?
If there were no God, then human beings are just “accidental by-products” of a mindless universe that
also destroys them