RLGN 104 WEEK 2 NOTESChapters Hindson: chs. 2,5 Powell: chs. 2–3 Weider: chs. 2–3 - $16.49   Add to cart

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RLGN 104 WEEK 2 NOTESChapters Hindson: chs. 2,5 Powell: chs. 2–3 Weider: chs. 2–3

RLGN 104 WEEK 2 NOTES Chapters  Hindson: chs. 2,5  Powell: chs. 2–3  Weider: chs. 2–3Hindson 2,5 2 The Existence of God There are four main arguments Christians have historically used to prove God‘s existence: the cosmological argument, the teleological argument, the moral argument, and the experiential argument. These four lines of reasoning describe arguments about creation‘s existence, creation‘s design, universal morality, and personal experience. Used appropriately, these arguments make it difficult for skeptics to disprove or deny the existence of God. The Cosmological Argument The cosmological argument simply suggests that the universe has a cause and must therefore have a creator. Otherwise, the universe would merely exist without purpose or cause, but it clearly does not. Several theories have emerged within the cosmological argument, but one of the most famous is called the Leibnizian cosmological argument. It is presented as follows:  There is an explanation for the existence of anything that exists.  If there is an explanation of the existence of the universe, that explanation is God.  The universe exists.  Therefore, there is an explanation of the existence of the universe.  Therefore, the explanation of the existence of the universe is God.The cosmological argument suggests that for anything that exists, there must be an explanation of how it exists. Second, if the universe exists, the only explanation can be God. This seems to be narrow-minded at first. Yet it is perhaps the most rational explanation available. The only adequate explanation for the origin of matter is an outside, intelligent, and powerful source of creative power, sometimes referred to as an intelligent designer. The cosmological argument concludes by acknowledging that the universe exists, and because it exists there must be an explanation of its existence. We who believe in God realize the only sufficient explanation is that God exists. This argument simply states that for anything that exists there is an explanation of its existence, and in the case of the universe, any explanation apart from God fails to adequately give a reason for the origin of life. One of the most important aspects of the cosmological argument is that it provides purpose for creation. According to this argument, there was purpose in creation, there is still purpose in creation, and there will always be purpose in creation. Another important aspect of the cosmological argument is that it provides purpose to creation. For the Christian, the ultimate purpose of creation is to bring glory to God (Rom 11:36; Col 1:16–17). The universe declares the glories of God and ultimately points toward a creator. Any explanation void of a creator reduces the universe to a simple accident of nature.  There must be an explanation for the existence of the universe. God is the only explanation that succeeds in making clear every aspect of the universe‘s existence.  Only a created universe can have purpose, and since our universe has purpose, it must have a creator. God is the only adequate explanation of how the universe has purpose. The Teleological Argument The teleological argument in its simplest form argues that the universe is so well designed and finely tuned that only a creator could have made it. Naturalism, the philosophy that onlynature exists and the supernatural is superfluous, generally suggests that the current universe is a product of a series of evolutions over billions of years. Yet this theory fails to explain the high complexity and interdependence of the universe. Only a creator could be responsible for the apparent design of the universe. One of the most famous examples of the teleological argument is William Paley’s ―watchmaker‖ parable According to Paley, the watch and the rock both demand a different verdict, as design of the watch necessitates a creator. Similarly, the universe demands a creator simply due to its fine-tuning and complex design. More recently, scientist Michael Behe discusses this issue in a concept called irreducible complexity. Irreducible complexity is the idea that many molecular machines are simply too complex to have formed via evolution. Behe demonstrates this idea using bacterial flagella. He proposes that the flagellum, which moves by propelling itself using a filament, ―is irreducibly complex, as it consists of a paddle, a rotor, and a motor, which consists of several bushings, rings, connectors, cytoplasmic membranes, and rods, which consist of over forty different kinds of proteins. Behe’s argument is that if any of these parts are taken away from the flagellum, it is immediately useless. Further, any of these parts apart from the flagellum are totally useless. Evolution cannot explain the flagellum‘s origin because if one member of the flagellum is absent, the flagellum is immediately rendered useless, as is the separated member, which before had a specific function  The electromagnetic coupling constant binds electrons to protons in atoms. If it was smaller, fewer electrons could be held. If it was larger, electrons would be held too tightly to bond with other atoms.  [The] ratio of electron to proton mass (1:1836). Again, if this was larger or smaller, molecules could not form.  Carbon and oxygen nuclei have finely tuned energy levels.  Electromagnetic and gravitational forces are finely tuned, so the right kind of star can be stable.  Our sun is the right colour. If it was redder or bluer, photosynthetic response would be weaker. Our sun is also the right mass. If it was larger, its brightness would change too quickly and there would be too much high energy radiation. If it was smaller, the range of planetary distances able to support life would be too narrow; the right distance would be so close to the star that tidal forces would disrupt the planet‘s rotational period. UV radiation would also be inadequate for photosynthesis.  The earth’s distance from the sun is crucial for a stable water cycle. Too far away, and most water would freeze; too close and most water would boil.  The earth’s gravity, axial tilt, rotation period, magnetic field, crust thickness, oxygen/nitrogen ratio, carbon dioxide, water vapor and ozone levels are just right The Moral Argument The moral argument for the existence of God is a bit simpler than the previous two arguments. Essentially, the moral argument suggests that without God, there can be no true source of morality. Since all people share some sense of morality, or right and wrong, there must be an ultimate moral lawgiver. If there is no God, morality is subjective, becoming a matter of preference rather than a standard to be met. The key to this argument is to determine whether there are such things as objective morals. If there are, then God must exist. Another way of stating this argument is captured in the following syllogism:  If God does not exist, objective morals do not either.  Objective morals do exist.  Therefore, God exists. While various people or cultures may disagree regarding what is right or wrong, every person experiences that there are values of right and wrong. Even in extreme examples such as a culture that condones cannibalism, there are community rules and laws that determine what is acceptable and unacceptable in daily life. The Experiential ArgumentOut of the four arguments, the experiential is the easiest argument to understand. It simply comes from personal experience, rooting itself in the experiences that people have had with God. If a person has had an encounter with God, then this encounter is evidence that God exists. Second Corinthians 5:17 teaches that Christians are a new creation after receiving the gift of salvation. In other words, encountering God is a life-changing experience and provides testimony to God‘s existence Paul stands before King Agrippa, a ruler who does not believe in God. Rather than emphasizing any of the previous three arguments, Paul simply tells Agrippa of his experience with God on the road to Damascus and how his life has since been changed. Paul uses his experience to prove God‘s existence. Often, when people share the gospel, one of their biggest fears is that questions will be asked and they will not know how to answer. While it is important to study our faith, we will always have one explanation of God‘s existence:—our personal testimony. Conclusion The existence of God seems basic enough, but this concept totally rearranges the worldview of believers. If God exists, there is someone to whom we must all give an account. This should change the way Christians live, moving us from a selffocused worldview to one that is focused on serving God and others. If God exists, there are real consequences for those who do not believe in him. This must change the way Christians view people and motivate us to share the truth of God‘s Word with urgency. If God is real, then everything changes. [Ed Hindson (2017). (p. 20). Everyday Biblical Worldview. B&H Academic. Retrieved from ] CHAPTER 5 NOTES The Trinity: One God in Three Persons The Bible seems to be filled with mysteries. The first coming of Christ made many of those mysteries clear. Consider what Paul says in Ephesians 1:9–10: ―He made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he purposed inChrist as a plan for the right time—to bring everything together in Christ, both things in heaven and things on earth in him.‖ The disciples understood that the mysteries of the Godhead were progressively revealed to them. One mystery believers continue to discuss is the doctrine of the Trinity, or the Godhead. Few things in church history have been debated as rigorously as the Trinity. Since the fourth century, when Arius was deemed a heretic for denying the deity of Christ, the Trinity has stood as a core doctrine of the church despite consistent challenge from opponents. The Trinity is a unique doctrine of the Christian faith. It is the belief that there is one God expressed in three eternal and coequal persons. Muslims and Jews usually accuse Christians of believing in three different gods rather than one because they misunderstand the Trinity. Atheists and other sorts of nonbelievers believe that the Trinity is a contradiction to the monotheistic claims of the faith. This is not surprising, however, when considering what Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 1:27: ―Instead, God has chosen what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen what is weak in the world to shame the strong. Paul also writes in 2 Corinthians 4:4, ―In their case, the god of this age has blinded the minds of the unbelievers to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.‖ The concept of the Trinity is used to explain the deity and unity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Bible clearly teaches the eternal generation of the Son by the Father and the Spirit (John 1:14, 14:16, 15:26). The biblical concept of the Trinity is that of tri-unity. Modalism mistakenly defines the Trinity as one God who reveals Himself in three different modes. Tritheism falsely views the Trinity as three separate but cooperating gods. Monotheism in the Bible Monotheism, or the belief that there is one God, is a core belief of Christianity. A biblical worldview adheres to the idea that there is one God and that to believe otherwise is heresy and deliberate disobedience to the first two commandments (Exod 20:3–6). In the Old Testament, the God of the Bible—the true God—is referred to as Yahweh (usually translated as Lord or Lord).Yahweh is the God that created the heavens, the earth, vegetation, animals and organisms, and all people. Yahweh is also the same God that chose Israel and, starting with Abraham, developed a unique relationship with the nation (Gen 12:1–7). Israel‘s essential creed was that God is one. Deuteronomy 6:4–5 reads, ―Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.‖ The section following this verse is known as the Shema (―listen‖). Every observant Jewish person knows this verse by heart. God instructed them to teach their children this monotheistic creed. Further revelation comes in Exodus 20, when Moses received the Ten Commandments from God and gave them to Israel. The first commandment is to have no other gods before Yahweh. This commandment was given because God wanted to remind the people that there is no other god than him. In fact, Israel had to be reminded of this repeatedly, with stories like Elijah‘s contest with the false prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel highlighting God‘s monotheistic nature (1 Kings 18). Based on Scripture from both the Old Testament and the New Testament, it is clear that the Bible teaches monotheism. Christians do not believe the Trinity consists of three gods. The Bible repetitively declares that there is only one God. The mystery then, is not whether Christianity is monotheistic, but rather how the three persons of the Trinity can be one God. But first it is necessary to understand why each member of the Trinity qualifies to be God. The Members of the Trinity God the Father God is defined in the Bible by his divine characteristics. He is:  Eternal (Deut 33:27).  Self-existent (Exod 3:13–14).  Infinite (1 Kgs 8:22–27).  Transcendent (Ps 139:7–12).  Omnipotent (Rev 19:6).  Omniscient (Ps 147:5). Immutable (Jas 1:17).  Sovereign (Ps 135:6).  Holy (Lev 19:2).  True (John 17:3). The magnitude of God’s person is emphasized in the Old Testament. Yet Psalm 68:5 calls God a ―father of the fatherless.‖ In Psalm 89:26, the writer actually refers to God as his father. However, the actual concept of God being called Father was uncommon until Jesus used this term more frequently. Jesus most likely did this for two reasons. First, Jesus called God Father to bring to light a nature of God that may not have been as familiar to the Jewish people of his day. Second, Jesus, by calling God Father, demonstrated the distinction between himself and his Father. The Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5–7) introduced the idea of calling God Father to many for the first time. Jesus mentions giving glory to the Father in heaven (Matt 5:16), people being sons of the Father (Matt 5:45), being perfect as the heavenly Father is perfect (Matt 5:48), giving in secret so the Father who sees in secret will give a reward (Matt 6:1), praying to the Father in heaven (Matt 6:4–8), and receiving good gifts from the Father (Matt 7:11), along with many other mentions of the Father in those chapters. Jesus established the practice of calling Yahweh ―Father‖ to help Jewish people understand the distinctions between the first two persons of the Trinity. By using the term ―Father,‖ the New Testament emphasizes God‘s positive qualities of love, mercy, goodness, and faithfulness. God the Son Though the Father’s deity is the most obvious in the Trinity, the Bible also speaks of Jesus as God. In fact, Jesus himself made remarkable claims that indicated his deity. For example, John 5:17–18 reads, ―Jesus responded to them, ‗My Father is still working, and I am working also.‘ This is why the Jews began trying all the more to kill him: Not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal to God.‖ John also records Jesus saying, ―I and the Father are one,‖ further indicating that Christ is a member of the Trinity (John10:30). A few verses later, John also writes, ―‗We aren‘t stoning you for a good work,‘ the Jews answered, ‗but for blasphemy, because you—being a man—make yourself God‘‖ How can God and Jesus be one if Jesus is not God? John specifically notes that Christ is God in John 1:1 and 1:14. Jesus claimed to possess equal glory with God the Father—before the world even began. John 17:5 records Jesus praying, ―Now, Father, glorify me in your presence with that glory I had with you before the world existed.‖ Perhaps the clearest indications of Jesus‘s deity are the divine attributes that he displayed: omnipotence over people (John 17:2), disease (Luke 4:39), demons (Matt 8:16), nature (Matt 8:26), sin (Matt 9:1–8), and death (John 11:4). Jesus also displayed omniscience in the case of Nathanael (John 1:48), the Samaritan woman (John 4:29), the disciples (Luke 9:46–47), the scribes (Matt 9:3–4), and Judas (John 13:11). More than anything else, Jesus received and accepted worship (Matt 8:2, 9:18, 15:25, 20:20; Mark 5:6; John 9:38, 20:28), and he claimed to be able to forgive people’s sins (Mark 2:5–7) and give them eternal life (John 6:40). Jesus claimed to have come from heaven, to be equal with God, to be the very incarnation of God, and to represent the power and authority of God. There can be no doubt that he believed he was God. In addition, the people around him believed he was God. C. S. Lewis sums this up well: If those closest to Jesus believed He was God in the flesh why should we not do the same? If He is a liar who deliberately deceived others, He is not worthy of our worship. If He is a lunatic, self-deceived, and out of touch with reality, He is not worthy of our devotion, but if He is indeed Lord, we have no choice but to worship Him.[24] God the Spirit The Holy Spirit is also a person of the Godhead. He is not merely an apparition of God. He is God himself. He has a will (1 Cor 12:11), he speaks (Acts 8:29), he loves (Rom 15:30), he grieves (Eph 4:30), and he prays (―intercedes‖) on our behalf (Rom 8:26). The Spirit also has the attributes of deity. He is omnipresent (Ps 139:7), omniscient (1 Cor 2:10–11), omnipotent (Luke 1:35), and eternal (Heb 9:14). He is clearly identified as God. Consider these verses in Acts 5:3–4: ―Ananias,‖ Peter asked,―why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the proceeds of the land? Wasn‘t it yours while you possessed it? And after it was sold, wasn‘t it at your disposal? Why is it that you planned this thing in your heart? You have not lied to people but to God.‖ In these two verses, Peter equates the Holy Spirit with God, suggesting that Ananias, by lying to the Holy Spirit, has lied to God. Paul similarly makes a statement suggesting equality between the Holy Spirit and God in 1 Corinthians 3:16: ―Don’t you yourselves know that you are God’s temple and that the Spirit of God lives in you?‖ A few chapters later Paul adds, ―Don‘t you know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God? You are not your own‖ (1 Cor 6:19). Just as Paul says that people are a temple of God, he also says people are a temple of the Holy Spirit. These equal descriptions of two different persons suggest the Holy Spirit is also God. The Community of the Trinity The idea of three different persons being one God can be puzzling. Yet in this mystery lies the truth of the Trinity. Though the Father and the Son and the Spirit are three distinct beings, they exist as one God. A helpful way to think of the Trinity is to notice the two root words, ―tri‖ and ―unity.‖ The word ―Trinity‖ is not found in the Bible, but the idea of a ―tri-unity,‖ or triune God, is clearly found within Scripture. The concept of the equal nature of Father, Son, and Spirit is expressed throughout the Bible. God is infinitely complex. In humanity‘s fallen nature and limited understanding, we cannot fully comprehend the Trinity. Yet this infinite complexity of God also helps us understand that ―God, in the totality of His essence, without diffusion or expansion, multiplication or division, penetrates and fills the universe in all its parts.‖[25] Some use the analogy found in H2O, which can exist in three different states: solid, liquid, and gas. The chemical makeup, H2O, never changes. Regardless of whether found in ice, snow, river water, or steam from boiling pasta, H2O retains itschemical identity despite its various states. Likewise, the Trinity never loses its identity as God. God simultaneously exists in three different persons at the same time. Conclusion The Trinity is one of the most difficult theological concepts in the Bible to understand. We may not fully comprehend it, yet the Bible clearly offers evidence of its reality. The core concept of the Trinity and of this chapter is that Christianity does not believe in three separate gods. The Bible certainly upholds a monotheistic faith, with one God residing in three separate persons.  Powell: chs. 2–3 Does God Exist? The Cosmological Argument Definitions The word ―cosmos‖ is a Greek word that refers to everything that exists—the universe itself and all its constituents. The cosmological argument for the existence of God tries to show that because anything exists there must be a God who brought it into existence. In other words, without a God to create it, nothing could or would exist. It is possible for God to exist without the universe, but it is not possible for the universe to exist without God. Thus, the cosmological argument tries to showthat the universe is not a necessary being and therefore cannot account for its own existence The thrust of the argument is to show that the universe was caused by some agent that was neither part of the universe nor itself was caused. There are three basic kinds of cosmological arguments; Kalam, Thomist, and Leibnizian. The Kalam Cosmological Argument The Kalam argument tries to show that the universe is not eternal-that it had to have a beginning. This argument was first formulated by Christian philosophers, but it was not until medieval Islamic thinkers devoted attention to the argument that it found its full force. 1 Kalam is an Arabic word meaning ―talk‖ or ―speech.‖ Its connotation, however, is much broader and encompasses something closer to philosophy or theology. At the core of the argument is an understanding of the two kinds of infinities: potential (or abstract) infinites and actual (or concrete) infinites. The Kalam argument takes what we can know about these infinite series of numbers and uses that knowledge to demonstrate that the universe must have had a beginning. Potential infinites are sets of numbers that are continually increasing by adding another number to the series. For example, seconds on a stopwatch are potentially infinite. Once the start button is pressed, a set of numbers or moments will be generated (1, 2, 3, etc.) until the stop button is pressed. If the stop button is never pressed, the seconds will potentially accrue forever. However, potential infinites are never actually infinite. A potential infinite is always a finite set of numbers to which another increment can be added. It will never reach a point where it becomes infinite no matter how long it is added to. For instance, let's say you had a CD collection that was infinitely large, and each CD had an infinite number of songs onit. If you listened to one CD, you hear as much music as if you had listened to all of the CDs—an infinite amount—and yet those infinites are of different sizes—a nonsensical notion. Let's also say that there were only two artists in your CD collection, Bach and the Beatles, and that every other CD was by the Beatles. This would mean that you had as many Beatles CDs as you would Beatles and Bach CDs combined; they would both be an infinite number. But at the same time they would be different sized infinites. And would the number of Beatles CDs be odd or even? It must be one or the other, but to speak of infinity in such a way is irrational. if this makes your brain hurt or is confusing at all, then you are beginning to understand why actual infinites do not exist in the physical world. These examples are not just interesting brainteasers or puzzles. The fact that if X=Y then X cannot also be twelve times greater than Y is extremely important. You would never want to cross a bridge, ride in a car, or live in a house designed by an engineer who didn't recognize or didn't care about the absurdities of actual infinites. This demonstration of the non-existence of actual infinites can be applied in two real-world areas, time and causality. The best way to show that time is not infinite, that it had a beginning, is to observe that there is a ―now.‖ If now exists, then time cannot be infinite. To show this, picture the moment ―now‖ as a destination, like a train station. Then picture time as train tracks that are actually infinitely long. If you were a passenger waiting on the train to arrive, how long would you have to wait? The answer is: forever. You can never reach the end of infinity; thus, infinitely long train tracks cannot ever be crossed. There is no end to arrive at, no station. If infinitely long train tracks could be crossed, they would be the equivalent of a one-ended stick, a nonsensical notion Just as potential infinites are finite numbers that can never turn infinite, actual infinites could never reach the end of their infiniteness and turn finite. But there is an end, a ―now"; the train did arrive at the station. This means the tracks of time cannot be infinitely long. There cannot be an infinite number of preceding moments prior to the present moment. Thepast is not an actual infinite. Thus, time had to have a beginning Time, however, did not cause itself to spring into existence. If it had a beginning, then something initiated it. This is where causality comes into the picture. There is no such thing as an effect that was not caused. You are an effect of the biological process caused by your parents. These words you now read were caused by my typing on a keyboard. The current state of the universe is an effect caused by various astronomical and physical conditions. Note, however, that each of the causes mentioned are also effects. For example, your parents are not only your cause, but they are the effects of their parents who were the effects of their parents, and so on. Thus, there must be a cause that is not an effect, an uncaused cause, or first cause. Since the universe is an effect, it must have had a cause itself. The Kalam argument tells us that the universe had a beginning and that the beginning was caused by an uncaused cause. At this point there are only two options: either the cause was personal or it was impersonal. Reflection on what this uncaused cause would look like leads us to a conclusion rather quickly. The first cause would require an ability to create. Without this ability nothing could be created. It would also require an intention to create, a will to initiate the universe. Without this will to create, nothing would be created. It would require a non-contingent being, one whose existence depends on nothing but itself. If it was contingent, then it would simply be one more effect in the chain of causes and effects. And it must be transcendent. The cause of the universe must be outside of and apart from the universe. Now add all these things together. What kind of thing relies on nothing for its existence, has the power to create something from nothing, has a will to do it or not do it andhas the characteristic of existing outside of the creation? Does this sound like a personal or impersonal being? Personal, of course. Thus, the Kalam argument brings us to the conclusion that the universe had a beginning that was caused by a personal, powerful, transcendent being. A question that frequently arises at this point has to do with God's infinite characteristics. ― If there is no such thing as an actual infinite, then how can God be infinitely good or loving?‖ When we speak of God's infinite characteristics, we are speaking in more of a metaphorical manner. We do not mean that God has an infinitely large quantity of goodness and love with which He funds His grace and mercy. We mean He is the ultimate embodiment of goodness and love. These characteristics are without measure and speak to the quality of His character, not the quantity of His characteristics. [DOUG POWELL (2012). (p. 33). HQSG to Christian Apologetics. B&H Publishing Group. Retrieved from ] The Thomist Cosmological Argument In the thirteenth century, Thomas Aquinas gave three forms of the cosmological argument in his Summa Theologica as a part of his ―five ways‖ of proving the existence of God. Aquinas's thinking was this: Thomas Aquinas (1225/27–1274 ―Since nature works for a determinate end under the direction of a higher agent, whatever is done by nature must be traced back to God, as to its first cause. So also, whatever is done voluntarily must also be traced back to some higher cause other than human reason or will, since these can change and fail. For all things that are changeable and capable of defect must be traced back to an immovable and self-necessary first principle.― 3Aquinas first tried to demonstrate God's existence from motion. Motion is an effect and as such, needs a cause. According to Aquinas, ―whatever is moved must be moved by another.‖ 4 This chain of one thing moving another that moves another cannot regress infinitely. As we have shown above, this is impossible. Thus, there must be a first cause that sets all others into motion—an unmoved mover. Although everything may be fully capable of functioning, without a first, uncaused cause to initiate the action, everything would remain idle and useless. Without the unmoved mover to open the lid, the universe would become like a wound music box that remained forever closed, motionless, and silent. Furthermore, to suggest the music box needs no unmoved mover to open the lid is to suggest that the wood and metal assembled themselves into the music box without the need of a craftsman. This first cause or unmoved mover is what we call God. Aquinas employed a variation of this argument to arrive at his second proof. This argument, rather than being based on motion, is based on existence or what he calls ―efficient cause.‖ 5 Everything that comes into existence owes its existence to something else. There is nothing that brings itself into existence or causes itself. Thus, existence is an effect of a cause that is itself an effect of a cause, and so on. But once again we cannot trace this lineage of causes back infinitely. There must be a first cause to explain why any cause exists. This first cause must be a self-existent being that does not rely on anything for existence. This self-existent, noncontingent being is called God. Third, Aquinas based an argument on the possibility of existence. Nothing we see in the universe has to exist. Everything we see could just as well not have existed. This makes everything that exists simply possible, not necessary. But something does exist. ―Therefore,‖ says Aquinas, ―not all beings are merely possible, but there must exist something the existence of which is necessary.‖ 6 Thus we know that a necessary being must exist in order to account for the possible beings that do exist; it makes the possible beings possible. A being that is necessary for the existence of all things is called God. The Leibnizian Cosmological ArgumentWhy is there something rather than nothing? 7 This is the famous question of philosopher G. W. F. von Leibniz, whose cosmological argument took a slightly different approach than Aquinas's. Instead of arguing from cause itself, Leibniz argued there must be a sufficient reason for the existence of the universe. Leibniz bought into Aquinas's arguments regarding cause but saw that it did not address the why of the cause. Things that are caused and states of affairs do not just happen without reason. And in the same way that everything that is caused has a prior cause, Leibniz observed that everything that exists has a reason outside of and prior to its existence. And just as there can be no infinite chain of causes, there can be no infinite chain of reasons. Thus, the universe cannot provide a sufficient explanation for its own existence or state of affairs. The only sufficient reason must be found outside of the universe in a being whose existence is ―self-explanatory…(and) logically necessary.‖ 8 And this being is who we call God. Scientific Arguments There are a number of examples of how these various forms of the cosmological argument play out in the real world. The second law of thermodynamics, for instance, is often used as an illustration. 9 However, the best and most easily understood example may be the big bang theory. The Big Bang In the 1920s Astronomer Edwin Hubble discovered that our universe was bigger than previously thought. In fact, it was much bigger. Until he saw outside our galaxy, the prevailing thought was that our galaxy was the entire universe. Hubble was the first to recognize that ours was only one of billions of galaxies.Late in the decade he was studying the light from distant galaxies and found it was not what he expected it to look like. The light he saw did not correspond to any known element or combination of elements. Then he noticed the light was uniformly shifted to the red side of the spectrum. All the characteristics he expected were still there, just at a slightly different location on the color spectrum, the red end. This phenomenon became known as the red shift. Hubble found an explanation for the red shift by applying the Doppler effect. The Doppler effect says that if sound is emitted from an object moving toward you, the sound waves are compressed or shortened. The shortening of the wavelength increases the pitch of the sound; it is shifted to a relatively higher place on the register. The farther away the object is as it moves toward you, the shorter the wavelength and the higher the pitch. Conversely, if the object is moving away from you, the sound waves are lengthened. The lengthening of the wavelength decreases the pitch, shifting the sound to a relatively lower spot on the register. The Doppler effect is what describes the change in pitch you hear in sirens from ambulances. As the ambulance gets closer to you, the sound you hear drops toward its natural pitch. When it is next to you, you hear the siren at its natural pitch. As the ambulance gets farther away the siren drops progressively lower than its natural pitch. The Doppler effect says that if sound is emitted from an object moving toward you, the sound waves are compressed or shortened. The Doppler effect can also apply to light waves, and this is just what Hubble did to solve the mystery. The blue end of the light spectrum is composed of the shorter wavelengths, while the red end is composed of the longer wavelengths. Everywhere he looked in the universe he saw a red shift in the light. This meant the objects emitting the light— stars—are all moving away from each other. Thus the universe is expanding. Other scientists took this discovery and built on it. If the universe is expanding, it must have a point of origin from which it was expanding. Other discoveries were made that showed the expansion is slower now than it was when it began—like an explosion. This explosion became known as the big bang, the beginning of the universe.The two primary challengers of the big bang theory are the steady state theory and the oscillating theory The steady state theory argues the universe has always existed and always will exist. Not only do the observations that support the big bang militate against this view, but it would require the existence of actual infinites. The fact that there is a now makes the theory of an infinite number of preceding moments an impossibility. The oscillating theory says that the universe will eventually stop expanding and contract back to a singularity which will then explode and continue a cycle that will forever repeat. Again, the theory would require the existence of actual infinites, a series without beginning or end. But since we exist in the current oscillation, there must be a start to the cycle. The other limiting factor is the second law of thermodynamics. The energy in the universe is not infinite. Just as a rubber ball bounces lower and faster with each bounce until it stops, an oscillating universe would eventually run down. Again, an oscillating universe must have a beginning. The big bang remains the best explanation for the current state of the universe. But if the big bang was an explosion, why did it explode? What exploded and where did it come from? Explosions are effects and effects need causes—they do not cause themselves. The cause of the big bang is not to be found in the physical universe because that is precisely what exploded Also, the matter that exploded did not create itself. The non-existence of actual infinites shows that matter cannot be eternal. So, because the universe had a beginning, something must have initiated it. It did not start itself. The cause of the universe must be found outside of the universe; it must be transcendent. The cause must be powerful in order to create the entire universe ex nihilo, out of nothing. The cause must not be an effect but is an uncaused cause. Otherwise, we would fall into a nonsensical chain of infinite regress. And this cause must not rely on anything else for its existence; it must be noncontingent—or necessary. Note that this description only describes what is necessary for the big bang to work. But if there is such an entity as the one described, it is still not sufficient for the creation of the universe. Just because this entity does exist does not mean theuniverse must exist. Something is still missing—intentionality, a will to make it happen. A car that has a working engine, a healthy battery, a properly connected electrical system to start the engine, and is full of gas has all the necessary conditions for running. Yet parking lots are full of cars that have the necessary conditions but are not running. Although they have the necessary conditions, they lack sufficient conditions. Cars that are moving down the street have necessary and sufficient conditions for running—that is why they are moving. What do the moving cars have that the parked cars do not? They have drivers. And what is a driver? It is a being that is not part of the car, that has the power to start the car, that does not rely on the car for its existence, does not rely on anything outside itself to be able to operate the car, and has the will to start and direct the car. And if they are particularly clever they may have even built the car. Thus, the universe needs a driver, an intelligent agent that is capable of choosing whether to create the universe or not. This necessary and sufficient cause of the universe is what we call God. Conclusion The cosmological argument has a long history and is employed effectively by numerous religions. It does not seek to show all of the attributes and characteristics of God, only that God does exist. But while the argument does not show which of those religions is true, it does expose several religions and worldviews being incompatible with the features of the universe that the cosmological argument brings to light. These will be examined in chapter five. Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, however, hold a view of God that is compatible with the characteristics of our universe on which the cosmological argument is based. Notable Quote Do not be afraid of being free thinkers! If you think strongly enough you will be forced by science to the belief in God, whichis the foundation of all religion. You will find science not antagonistic but helpful to religion. 10 — Sir William Thompson, a.k.a. Lord Kelvin Weider Chapters 2-3 CHAPTER 2 CRITICAL THINKING What is the difference between supervision and oversight? Break those two words apart (supervision and oversight). You have "super" correlating with the word "over," and you have "vision"looking pretty similar to the word sight. But I think you would agree that there is a difference between someone who has "supervision" over an entire department and when that same employee forgets to perform an important task and apologizes for his "oversight." In each of the examples above, understanding the context is necessary in the process of critical thinking. Discernment is needed in every area of our lives, but the path to discernment is through critical thinking. Some in American culture even reject the idea of questioning what another person believes by championing the idea of tolerance and pluralism. What a person believes is important and being able to critically think and to intelligently challenge incorrect thinking is essential in the process of making wise decisions in life. WHAT IS CRITICAL THINKING? Critical thinking is a self-guided, self-disciplined process which directs individuals to think correctly about themselves and the world around them. It is an essential method that guides its adherents toward truth. It involves investigation, analysis, and self-corrective decision-making, which provide a consistent and coherent way to solve problems and come to conclusions. The word critical comes from the Greek word kritikos from which the English word critic is derived. It means to judge or to discern, to make sense of, to recognize and comprehend. It is through the process of questioning what is read, heard, seen, and experienced that you can come to the best possible conclusion about a matter in order to make wise decisions. Humans have the unique ability to think and to make discriminating choices. Homo sapiens means "thinking man." As supported in Scripture, the image of God refers to the fact that we human beings have the same intellect, emotion, and will as God has… but not to the extent of God's infinite omniscient (all-knowingness), perfect understanding. God's emotions are derived from His divine holiness. Therefore, if you want to be a balanced "critical" thinker, it is imperative that you follow these three important steps: Rehearse: You must evaluate the evidence and "so-called" opinions.  Reflect: You must reflect on the meaning of statements and ideas.  Reason: You must test the reasonableness of statements and ideas. REHEARSE: RECOGNIZE AND EVALUATE THE EVIDENCE AND "SO-CALLED" OPINIONS When people provide their position on a particular issue, we say that they offer their opinion. For example, some people prefer deep, dark, warm, rich colors and others prefer fluorescent colors like hot pink, lime green, and bright turquoise. Some of us love the beach and others of us love the mountains. These opinions about our personal preferences are neither right nor wrong—they are based on how we are wired. But when it comes to our opinions about a specific topic or an issue, it gets a little more complicated. Everyone has a right to share their opinion about a particular issue, but all opinions must be scrutinized to determine how much credence one should give to that particular opinion. In other words, everyone has a right to an opinion, but that does not make every opinion accurate and correct. And because it is a personal thought, it has the propensity to be consistent or inconsistent, logical or illogical, factual or nonfactual. While it is true that opinions are formulated throughout one's life experience—and experiences are indeed valuable—it does not guarantee that a person's opinion will therefore be normative, or what every other person should adhere to. For people who have no desire to persuade another to adopt their opinion on an issue, they are simply sharing their "preference." But a person who wishes for their opinion to be adopted by another, their view must be formulated based upon sound evidence, and not just emotions and/or individual perspectives. As a critical thinker you must be able to recognize if the opinion is based upon sound evidence or based upon personal preference. And the only way in which someone is able to process evidence critically is to do his/her own proper and sound investigation and evaluation of the information presented to determine if it was accurately obtained and factual. Therefore, each person who desires to think critically must be committed to asking the "Who/What/Where/When/Why/How" questions.It is necessary to ask these questions prior to declaring something as sound and reliable evidence upon which to hold a sound opinion. REFLECT: REFLECT ON THE MEANING AND SIGNIFICANCE OF STATEMENTS AND IDEAS A critical thinker must be intentional about reflection. Reflection in this context refers to the process by which you contemplate the meaning of the statement, the motive of the statement, and the level of significant impact of the statement. Reflection can help you at home with personal decisions, at your job with business obligations, and in spiritual matters of the heart. It should become an important part of your daily life that allows you to process information correctly instead of in a reactionary way. Reflection is necessary for a proper response. REASON: TEST THE REASONABLENESS OF STATEMENTS AND IDEAS What about preachers? The authors of this book are both ministers. Every week we are in front of hundreds of people. So, how do we feel confident that what we are saying should be adopted and adhered to? We firmly believe that Christians should not be exempt from critical analysis. When we present the truths of the Bible, we welcome our audience to critically rehearse, reflect, and reason regarding what has been presented about the Christian faith. In our lives we have seen many critical thinkers contemplate the teachings of the Bible only to become persuaded as to the sound evidence and logic of the Christian faith. Fortunately, in addition to the number of evidences for the Christian faith found within the Bible, its validity is also reinforced by testimonies of how these evidences altered the lives of some key people in history. The apostle Paul, the writer of the majority of the New Testament, is considered to be the greatest apologist of Christianity, and he was tested. In the book of Acts, the author, Luke, illustrated this process of critical thinking when he stated, "Now the Bereans were of more noble character than theThessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true" (Acts 17:11). CHAPTER 3 ASKING THE RIGHT QUESTIONS When you were a child and your parents asked you to do something, did you ever ask, "Why?" And did you ever hear the response, "Because I said so"? If you are a parent, have you ever said that to your child(ren)? How did it go? What reason did you have for responding that way? Was it legitimate or did you honestly just not have the energy to explain yourself? Was it the right way to respond? Questions and answers like these between parents and children are often very common and at times appropriate. Parents rightly see themselves in an authoritative role in which they expect compliance or agreement. A problem with critical thinking can exist, though, when children grow up not knowing how or why to ask the right questions. This will directly affect their ability to make good decisions. Other decisions we make can have more lasting consequences like choosing a major at college, accepting an offer for employment, or deciding on the right person to marry. There are three primary approaches all of us take when making decisions:  Indecision  Passive Decision-Making  Active Decision-Making INDECISION Indecision—not making a decision—is actually a decision in itself. There are times when indecision is necessary because you do not have all of the facts needed to make an informed choice. PASSIVE DECISION-MAKING The second approach is passive decision-making. This approach is taken when a person chooses not to evaluate what they see or hear. They just accept the opinions of others as truth, thusmaking someone else's opinion their own without ever applying critical thinking skills. Using the bomb analogy, it would be like choosing a wire based upon the opinion of an inquisitive person standing next to you. You ask them, "Which wire should I cut?" They say, "Cut the red one" and you cut it. Two things might occur at this point. The bomb might be defused and everyone would be safe, or the bomb could explode and you and others would die. Sometimes you get lucky by choosing the passive decision-making approach. But do you really want to live your life based on luck? We hope not. ACTIVE DECISION-MAKING The third approach is active decision-making. Everyone has to make important and/or difficult choices. When that happens to you, what process do you go through to make the best decision? Active decision-making is a process of asking the right questions of yourself and others to come to the best possible conclusion. These questions might include:  What is the decision I must make?  What values do I need to incorporate in making this decision?  What do I need to know in order to make a wise decision?  Can I trust the sources I am using to make this decision?  What alternatives are available within the scope of this decision?  Have I investigated the issue enough to make an informed decision?  Am I willing to make a decision and follow through on my decision? Again, if we use the bomb illustration, how would an active decision maker decide which wire to cut? Let's use the questions above to illustrate the third approach. First, I must defuse this bomb. I need to do this because lives are at stake and human life is precious. I need to know which wire to cut. What does the person next to me really know about defusing a bomb? Nothing! Ok, I am not going to take his or her opinion. Is there anyone else around who knows how to defuse a bomb, or is there an instruction guide to use? WHAT IS AN ARGUMENT?Have you ever had an argument with someone? What is the first thing you assume when you argue with someone? Did you answer, "I'm right"? What is the second thing you assume? "They're wrong" is the common response. It is interesting to note that at the core of these assumptions is the idea that there is an ultimate right and wrong with regard to opinions. When you think of the word argument, what comes to your mind? Do you envision a heated exchange between two or more people? That is a common interpretation. However, that is not the approach of this book. We are defining this term in its classical philosophical sense rather than how we commonly understand and use it. An argument is an attempt to offer evidence to demonstrate the soundness of an opinion. An opinion is a personal belief or a conclusion about an issue or a topic. It can be the result of using critical thinking or simply an emotional response to information presented. Opinions are often changed when the argument presented is more reasonable than competing arguments because it is supported by better evidence and/or reasons. Arguments can be sound (logical) or unsound (illogical). Coming to a conclusion about a matter involves investigating the evidence or reasons for a belief to determine if it is sound and believable WHAT IS EVIDENCE? Evidence is the basis or cause of a belief. It is a statement of justification and explanation of a belief or an action. It answers the questions, "Why do you believe…?" or "Why did you do that?" There are two primary ways evidence is gathered: personal experience and data gained from an external source. The evidence of personal experience is one way data is obtained to develop an argument. The apostle Paul used this approach when he was given permission by King Agrippa to defend himself at his trial in Acts 26. As a part of his argument Paul shares his personal experience of being confronted by the risen Christ on the road to Damascus. At the end of Paul's argumentation, after hearing the evidence, King Agrippa said to Festus and Bernice, "This man is not doing anything that deserves death or imprisonment" (Acts 26:31). Paul had won his argument with King Agrippa.Personal experiences can be very effective and persuasive to people who find personal experience more appealing than a list of facts and empirical data. However, personal experience is limited in its ability to be persuasive since it cannot necessarily be proven to be true and should not be relied upon completely in the development of an argument. FALLACIES USED IN ARGUMENTS There are numerous fallacies used in presenting arguments. A fallacy is simply any error, whether intentional or unintentional, in reasoning. The most common kinds of fallacies are informal in nature. Think of them as counterfeit arguments. The following is presented as a sampling of informal logical fallacies (listed alphabetically). AD HOMINEM FALLACY Ad Hominem literally means "to the man." This fallacy seeks to discredit a person's argument by attacking their personal character, origin, associations, etc., rather than their ideas. It is often used when one person realizes that he cannot defend his beliefs, so he attempts to win an argument in a popular way through personal or humorous attacks. Example #1—A politician will attack the opponent personally rather than attack the opponent's ideas to win a campaign. It becomes a popularity contest rather than being focused to choose the best qualified candidate who represents the people's values. In a debate a question is raised regarding abstinence education and one of the candidates says, "Here is my opponent, speaking to you of the values of abstinence and abstinence education when everyone knows she had a child out of wedlock while she was a teenager herself!" The argument says nothing about the issue of abstinence education, but it concentrates on the fact that the other candidate had a child as a teenager before she was married APPEAL TO AUTHORITY FALLACY The appeal to authority argument is used when a person appeals to the opinions of an expert in a field rather than doing their own research. It is assumed that their conclusions are true based solely on their reputation. It is also used when a personappeals to the authority of a popular, well-liked person, who is respected by the audience, but the person has no real authority on the matter. Example #1—Dan Barker, in his book Godless, argues against the idea that the universe we live in is not unique, but there are many potential universes like our own. He states, "Many or most cosmologists are now convinced that some kind of multiverse is likely. A multiverse is a collection of universes, and there are many scenarios." The assumption is made that these cosmologists are correct without investigating their research. APPEAL TO IGNORANCE FALLACY Appeal to ignorance is used when a person claims something is true simply because it cannot be disproved, or that something is fictitious because it cannot be proven to be true. Example #1—The existence of God, either the affirmation or the negation of His existence is often argued using the appeal to ignorance. In the affirmative it is argued, "I know that God exists because no atheist, no matter how clever, has ever provided evidence to the contrary." It is also argued that God does not exist. "The only reality is what can be known through the senses, and since I cannot see God, He doesn't exist." Example #2—Conspiracy theories can be argued using this method as well. "The government is hiding the truth from us. I know that aliens exist because the government has not proven that they don't BANDWAGON FALLACY The Bandwagon argument is used when a person justifies a course of action because "everyone else is doing it." This argument is often used when peer pressure (fear of rejection or promise of affection) causes a person to defend their action or inaction. Example #1—Ellen: "Mom, can I get a tattoo?" Mom: "No!" Ellen: "That's not fair. Everyone at school is getting one for graduation." Ellen is arguing on the basis of the fact that all of her friends are getting tattoos for graduation. However, she is offering no good evidence for her reason to get one.Example #2—"I cannot believe that the U.S., as civilized as it is, still allows the death penalty. Most other countries have already made capital punishment unlawful. How can the U.S. continue this barbaric practice?" In this example, the U.S. is accused of being immoral for allowing capital punishment. But what valid argument or arguments are given to indicate that capital punishment is immoral? None were given, so the argument is fallacious. BEGGING THE QUESTION FALLACY This argument is sometimes referred to as "circular reasoning." It occurs in an argument when a person assumes that their conclusion is true by the premise itself, or that the conclusion is supported by itself, or by simply restating the conclusion in a different way. Such an argument is begging the question, instead of answering it. Example #1—A Christian is asked to defend their belief that the Bible is true. Their response is to quote Scripture. "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness" (2 Tim 3:16). The argument then is that the Bible is true because the Bible says it's true. Unfortunately no evidence is given to support the conclusion other than the source itself. Can you see the circular reasoning? That would be like arguing that your opinion is right because it is your opinion. Other religious texts also claim to be true, but that argument alone does not make them true. FALSE ANALOGY FALLACY An analogy is a comparison of similarity between two things. A false analogy occurs when an argument is formulated on the basis of a comparison of unrelated things. People often apply their knowledge of one thing and use it in conjunction with an unrelated area. Sometimes that approach is appropriate. For example, a preacher might use an example from nature to describe a spiritual truth. However, there are times when an argument is given, but its comparison is not legitimate. A false analogy has occurred. Example #1—A biology textbook instructs its readers about the evolution of arthropods. Examples of arthropods include the extinct trilobite, and modern day spiders, crabs, andbutterflies. The argument in part is presented as follows: "The first arthropods occurred in the sea more than six hundred million years ago. Since then, arthropods have moved into all parts of the sea, most freshwater habitats, the land, and the air… This early body plan was modified gradually. Body segments were lost or fused over time… Arthropod appendages also evolved into different forms that are adapted in ways that enable them to perform different functions. These appendages include antenna, claws, walking legs, wings, flippers, mouth parts, tails, and other specialized structures." The authors then attempt to provide a practical example of this evolutionary process. "These gradual changes in arthropods are similar to the changes in modern cars since the Model T, the first mass-produced automobile. The Model T had all of the basic components, such as an internal combustion engine, wheels and a frame. Over time, the design changed, producing cars as different as off-road vehicles, sedans and sports cars. Similarly, modifications to the arthropod body plan have produced creatures as different as a tick and a lobster." FALSE DILEMMA OR EITHER/OR FALLACY A false dilemma occurs in an argument when a person oversimplifies a complex issue to make it appear that only two alternatives are possible. There are times when only two options exist. For example, there are only two choices in responding to the question, "Does God exist?" He either exists or He doesn't exist. There isn't a third alternative to choose from and the answer to that question doesn't commit this fallacy. However, when a false dilemma does occur, you should ask yourself whether additional options are plausible. The false analogy is evident by their comparison of a hypothetical evolutionary process change in arthropods with the intelligent design change of modern automobiles. Body parts from the Model T did not just fall off or fuse with other body parts to one day become a Lamborghini. (Citation: Miller, Kenneth R., Levine, Joseph, Biology, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ. 2004 HASTY CONCLUSION FALLACY A hasty conclusion occurs when one makes a judgment on the basis of one or even a few samples. This argument is used when a conclusion is made without enough evidence. When using criticalthinking you want to have a good reason for why you have concluded something. In this case, it is necessary to continue to investigate before coming to a conclusion and especially before sharing that conclusion with someone else. Example #1—"My friend told me that her philosophy class was hard. I'm in a philosophy class and it's hard, too. All philosophy classes are hard." Although each person's experience may be real and true to them, the opinions of two individuals do not constitute enough evidence to prove the fact that all philosophy classes are hard. IS/OUGHT NATURALIST FALLACY The is/ought or naturalistic fallacy occurs when a person comes to a conclusion about the way things ought to be on the basis of how things are or are assumed to be. It is coming to an "ought" from an "is." Unfortunately this is a very common fallacy that is used by people to justify everything from the use of hymnals in our churches to acting selfishly in our decision-making. Example #1—Pastor: "This Sunday we are going to be led in worship by our youth group. They won't be using the hymnals as we usually do, but they will be leading us in praise and worship using a PowerPoint presentation. The words will be on the screen for us to follow along." Deacon: "Pastor, I don't think it's right to sing these new praise and worship songs." Pastor: "How come?" Deacon: "Well, we've never done it any other way. It's just not right." In this case, no good reasons were given not to sing praise and worship songs other than tradition. It was assumed that something ought to be continued because of the way that it is. OVERGENERALIZATION FALLACY An overgeneralization argument is when a judgment is made about an entire group of people based upon the behavior, usually undesirable, of a few in that group. This is also known more popularly as stereotyping.Stereotypes are overgeneralizations that can become assumptions and shared by many people and at times, an entire group. Some stereotypes are of things such as public education, modern music, the arts, churches, synagogues or mosques. Other examples of stereotypes include people such as politicians, televangelists, feminists, athletes and blondes. Example #1—"All homeless people are lazy. They just want a hand-out. If our city is ever going to be safe, we need to take drastic measures and send all of these homeless people to another city." In this example, an entire segment of the population is being labeled as lazy. [Lew Weider (2015). (p. 48). Finding Your Worldview: Thinking Christianly about the World, Revised Ed.. B&H Academic. Retrieved from ] OVERSIMPLIFICATION FALLACY An oversimplification argument is to conclude that an effect has only one cause when in reality it is the result of multiple causes. It is also ignoring the complexity of the issue and omitting other vital information to draw a conclusion. Unfortunately, this type of fallacy is used by some individuals when people are asking legitimate questions about why something tragic has occurred. It can also be used in everyday reasoning about common situations. Example #1—"Can you believe the shooting that took place at school yesterday? It was tragic that so many innocent lives were killed. How could something like this occur in our town? If gun laws were stricter, this wouldn't have happened." Regardless of your opinion about gun laws, this is an example of an oversimplification fallacy. It might be one reason that the killings occurred but unless further information is gathered, the issue is too complex for one reason to be given. More than likely the shooting was the result of multiple causes. What other reasons might be given for this incident? Be careful when making a judgment about why something occurred. There are usually many reasons to consider. RED HERRING FALLACY A red herring argument is raising an irrelevant issue to divert attention from the primary issue. This fallacy often appeals to fear or pity. The argument also can use guilt to manipulate others into agreement and action. It is often inserted into an argument to help a person win the argument without directly dealingwith the real issue. It is irrelevant to the real issue at hand, though it may seem to be related. Example #1—"Euthanasia should

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