Debate: Atheist vs Christian (Christopher Hitchens vs William Lane Craig)

Opening Statements:
13:16 William Lane Craig (Christian)
33:42 Christopher Hitchens (Atheist)

Rebuttals:
54:20 William Lane Craig (Christian)
1:06:50 Christopher Hitchens (Atheist)

Cross-Examination:
1:19:29 William Lane Craig (Christian)
1:25:56 Christopher Hitchens (Atheist)

Responses:
1:33:02 William Lane Craig (Christian)
1:40:36 Christopher Hitchens (Atheist)

Closing Arguments:
1:48:18 William Lane Craig (Christian)
Christopher Hitchens (Atheist) – yielded his time

1:54:12 Question + Answer Period

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  • Christoffer Enfors

    IF CONFUSED READ BELOW.

    You've recently started to have doubts about your worldview and your curious. You start googling and watching clips of " so called evidence" and it all starts to frighten you. Thoughts like "are my parents really that delusional" come to mind. And now you're here and I bet it alleviates your anxiety when you post a comment like "where is evolution today" or " my faith is subjective therefore unchallengeable" . But you see there is such a thing as true and false here, and I suggest you start employing some intellectual honesty.

    Let's say I'm 14 and it's Christmas, and I've been wishing for a DVD box set of… McGyver, and suddenly your mom hands you a present. Now it doesn't matter how hard you wish and beg, if it is a currency collecting book, it's going to be a currency collecting book. The world is, and will always be a certain way. It really doesn't care if we believe in it or not.
    So face the music or smell the coffeé or whatever fitting metaphor. The world is so much more rich and profound when everything is transient and ultimately comes to an end.

  • Ferdinandt

    For any creationist wishing to present a logical defense to anyone who asks you for the hope that is in you, you are free to use to the following argument as you see fit. Remember though, arguments will not win people. It is merely a defense.

    The following premises relate to a creator and the object or thing created:

    Premise 1. The creator of an object is not a physical property of the object, for the creator doesn't merge with the object and neither does the object merge with the creator. In other words, the creator and object remain separate entities as opposed to becoming one inseparable unit.

    Premise 2. The creator's existence is not dependent on the object's existence. If it was, then the object should already have existed before it was made, which is obviously impossible.

    Premise 3. The object's existence, among other things such as raw materials, is always dependent on the creator's existence, for the object cannot come into existence without the creator.

    Premise 4. The creator always exists before the object.

    Therefore, If and only if God created the universe, then
    1. God is separate from the universe and He can also never be physically verified from within the universe via the scientific method as He is not a physical or chemical property thereof. (premise 1)
    2. God is independent from the universe (premises 2 & 3), and
    3. God existed before the universe (premise 4)

    This conclusion was arrived at by deductive reasoning and is therefore either valid or invalid. Which means that, atheists will have to falsify the premises if they wish to invalidate the conclusion. The conclusion also does not disallow or impede God from manifesting Himself to us. He's entirely free to come and go in his creation as He pleases and we would not be able to scientifically prove it anywhere from within the universe. In fact, if we did find any physical evidence of God (this is evidence God Himself and not the work of his hands) inside his creation, then his nature and status as the creator of the universe would be in serious question. In other words, if there is physical evidence of God inside the universe which can be verified through the scientific method over and over, then I would seriously question whether He is the creator of the universe or actually a creature and hence a product thereof. So, when atheists ask you for evidence of God inside his creation, then you should rejoice all the more and even thank them for their work, because they specifically use it to sow doubt.

    Please also remember that I mean evidence of God Himself (as in He as the creator) and not the work of his hands (as in his creation) when I speak about physical evidence of God. Creation itself testifies to God's existence, but He as creator should not exist inside his creation as if He was part and parcel thereof.

  • One FreeThinker

    Hitchens throughout the years has provided me with more consolation, Science, Philosophy, Wit and facts, Biology, overall knowledge and humor than has any religion. Long live the memory of my hero Christopher Hitchens!! the ultimate polymath.

  • Tray King

    GOD is real and Jesus Christ save me. Only until a person is imputed with a new heart and seal with the holy spirit will they truly believe God is real cause unbelievers are spiritual dead and need to be spiritual alive to see the truth. God save me and adopted me as his son and I am forever happy to him for giving me the precious gift of salvation.. GOD saves those that are humble and pride keeps a lot of people forever walking in darkness.

  • Randall Donadio (RD)

    A debate to encourage free thinking and an open mind.

    Open minds in the comment section: 1

  • benedettashairsalon@yahoo.com

    Thank you to this University for staging such an event. There needs to be more universities that do this

  • SS Tao Esoteric Genius

    if people don't have a perception of heaven, then what makes them think that this existence is not hell

  • Emily Munton

    The issue at the end – suffering – the illogical suffering of so many people, being justified by William by an eternal life and the equivalent suffering of Jesus, is the ultimate biblical cop out. Children suffer because of a combination of factors – decisions by policy makers, decisions by parents, colonial consequences, drought etc.

    To claim eternal life and the suffering of Jesus as some sort of justification for the "suffering" in "this life" is ridiculous fatalism.

    It is lazy.

    We need to DO and BE MORE. We need to stand up as humanists and donate to charity, we need to advocate for change in policy, we need to fight for justice.

    The concept of divine justice simply justifies laziness and fatalism.

  • tomaspianist

    Atheists do not need to prove that God doesn't exist. This is one of the logical bullshit that Bill Craig and others just cannot understand.

  • Dark Rabbit

    belief : an acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists.
    Atheism : disbelief or lack of belief in the existence of God or gods.

    they may believe that god does not exist as the statement "god does not exist" is accepted to them as being true, but being atheist is simply the lack of belief in the existence of gods.

  • Dark Rabbit

    Being christian really flaws your intelligence.

  • Peter Lomakos

    I might not completely comprehend everything here and I'm still young and learning. I got one point, if people believe in something that makes them less worried and happy why can't they believe in it? Even with the lack of evidence and in the long run all odds go against the existence of God, but when we are faced with death what else do we have faith in? I'm not here to offend anyone but that's my thinking.

  • Samuel Young

    Craig is adamant and a good speaker, but that's about it. As far as good arguments go, Hitchens won easily.

  • PageofLegend

    Why don't so many people understand that the "fine tuning" argument doesn't hold any water? Life evolved to survive in the environment it came up in, the universe wasn't "tuned" for us, we had to adapt to survive in it.

  • Jed Miller

    I like how WLC asserts you either believe in God, or you believe he isn't real.

    However, there's an objective difference between believing there is no god(which is a belief itself), and not believing in God(the state of being unconvinced of something's existence).

    You only need the latter to be an atheist. Albeit, I adhere to both.

    He also moves to assert that is propositions are true untold falsified. When in reality, there is no way to actually disprove the unfalsifiable. Then, he claims atheists must falsify God and think of replacements to his explanation. If this doesn't scream fallacy, I don't know what does. Switching the burden of proof, and claiming your position and assertions are by default true, until some other explanation is demonstrated, is total bull shit. Argument from ignorance.

    Please, don't believe this utter buffoonery.

  • Ebah

    Hearsay is a fact?

  • Andrew

    Love it when the theist debating starts with "lets not talk about biblical inaccuracies, or Old Testament Morals, etc…". They know these are great arguments against the bible, and thus god, so they try to handicap the debate before it even starts.

  • Null Void

    The thing is theists will never win in a debate, because their beliefs are not based in reality.

  • wubbie2002

    I love and miss Hitchens, his mind was fantastic, he loved debate and a good conversation. He was not all atheist, just a small part. The question he asks about would we all be better if we did not believe, do unto others, as you want others to do unto you. Yes, we all have the ability to do good, but go listen to the young people on YouTube who call themselves atheists and feel they need to get on here call Christians names, use foul language against people who through their own free choice wish to believe. He himself only wished that he does not want people trying to change him into a Christian and he would allow respect to those who do believe. If some atheists out there would answer me the question if these youngsters who do not wish to be treated like they are treating people, do they represent the face of atheists now? Is there never going to be another Hitchens, Krauss, Harris, Dawkins, in the future? Because they are actually not accomplishing anything but I do believe, they fashion themselves YouTube stars.