Christian Theology and Apologetics

Hawkings Philosophical Bankruptcy

Stephen Hawking recently made the claim that he has three arguments that disprove the existence of God. I saw his arguments on the ChristianPost blog; they can be found at the following: http://blogs.christianpost.com/confident-christian/stephen-hawkings-three-arguments-against-god-23109/
In this article the author points out three arguments Hawking gives, they are as follows:

1.God of the Gaps

“Ignorance of nature’s ways led people in ancient times to invent gods to lord it over every aspect of human life.”

2.Avoiding the Cosmic Beginning

“Because there is a law like gravity the universe can and will create itself from nothing. Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going.”

3. No Miracles, only materialism

“Philosophy is dead”

Professor Hawking is a brilliant scientist, but his above quotes also display what happens when a leading person in their own field tries to make unsubstantiated claims in another field of academia; in this case it is philosophy. On the forefront it is interesting that Hawking has made such claims as “philosophy is dead,” which is actually a philosophical statement. Essentially he is violating the law of non-contradiction.

In his first argument Hawking invokes the God of the gaps for even considering that a creator could make the universe. This is an old slide of the hand on the part of Atheist’s to try and dismiss any argumentation towards the existence of God. The problem with his argumentation is that it is dead wrong. No one today is invoking a God of the Gaps argument; we have great proof scientifically that the universe had an absolute beginning a finite time in the past; this is the BGV theorem. This theorem says that any universe that has an on average rate of expansion (like ours) has not existed infinitely in the past, but had an absolute beginning. This is very damaging to the Atheist think tank, as they have always thought the universe was infinite. So if the universe had a beginning, then it has a cause, since things that begin to exist have a cause. Now this first cause must transcend space and time, since it first created space and time. Therefore, it must be immaterial and nonphysical. It must be unimaginably powerful, since it created all matter and energy.
 Notice none of this is invoked on the evidence, rather the conclusion is derived from the premises. There is no God of the Gaps argumentation being posited for the creation of the universe; to say so is just misinformed and philosophically bankrupt.

For his second Argument Hawking seems to think the universe can and will create itself; he thinks that postulating a timeless, spaceless, powerful, first cause (God) as the creator of the universe is absurd; so what is his argument? The universe created itself? This is a claim worse than magic, at least in magic there is a magician with a wand, a hat, and a rabbit, but what Hawking is saying is that the universe created itself. If I told you that x created y, this wouldn’t seem contradictory would it? But what if I said x created x; would this seems plausible? I think not. For one it violates the law of non-contradiction. It is absurd to say that something can create itself; do we have any verifiable proof of anything ever creating itself from nothing? Nothing has no properties; it can’t produce anything. Hawking is just special pleading to avoid an absolute beginning to the universe and every philosopher out there knows it.

Hawkings third argument cannot be scientifically proven in and of itself. Firstly, to make the claim that there are no miracles is to make a claim against metaphysics, which cannot be scientifically verifiable, for in science you can only investigate physical claims; that is why it’s called physics after all. Additionally his claim is one of universal negation, and you cannot substantiate a claim of universal negation. If he wishes to say there are no miracles or metaphysics, then the burden of proof is on him, but he cannot scientifically prove it, so he is left with a physics of the gaps argument in which he invokes physics for everything; there can be no metaphysics, so I guess you and I do not have a conscience or identity since that is metaphysical. I also find Hawking’s claim somewhat hypocritical because He can make the claim that the universe created itself, which sounds far more less likely than a miracle.

At the end of the day, Stephen Hawking’s claim prove nothing more than how bad he is at philosophy, but wait, according to him it is dead anyhow; as Ricky Ricardo used to say, “Lucy you got some splaining to do.”


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