Response Paper


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Thesubject of whether or not God exists has elicited numerousphilosophical debates over the years. Many philosophers havequestioned whether God exists, with some arguing that he does existwhile others refute this claim. The debates on the existence of Godis based on the teleological and cosmological arguments. In hisarticle, McCloskey refutes the claims made by these two arguments andholds that they are false. The author states that humans shoulddismiss the idea of God since there is evil in the world. McCloskeyargues that since there is evil in the world, it can be concludedthat God does not exist. The arguments made by the philosopher arerelated to the beliefs and values of atheists who object theexistence of God (McCloskey, 1968).

Theauthor’s objection of the cosmological argument is based on thenotion that the existence of the world does not imply that God alsoexists. He argues that there is no way the world’s existencewarrants the presence of a supernatural being that was involved increating the earthly things. The stand of McCloskey can be objectedbased on the fact that there are contingent beings that exist in theworld and their existence is based on the presence of necessarybeings (McCloskey, 1968). Since necessary beings are the causes ofultimate beings, the cosmological argument must hold. In this case,God is the necessary being while the ultimate being is the world,which was created by God. In order to explain what caused the world,it is not possible to dismiss the presence of God. As such, Godexists and so does his power to determine what will happen on earth.

Theauthor also presents an argument opposing the cosmological argumentbased on the fact that it fails to support the presence of a causethat is uncaused. Some of the claims made by McCloskey regarding thecosmological argument are not supported by factual evidence. This isbecause he does not state whether the cosmological argument can beused to support the notions of perfection, as well as power. Theauthor objects the philosophical arguments made by theists whobelieve that indeed God exists. McCloskey has failed to make acomprehensive analysis of the arguments that theists make (McCloskey,1968). Contrary to his argument, theists do make highlight thepersonal traits that God possesses. Thus, the argument in the articlecan be faulted for having misrepresented the ideological beliefs oftheists about the existence of God and his nature.

McCloskeyalso states that the world does not present itself as a product ofperfect being, which can be seen as omnipotent. He argues that if Godwas a superior human being, then the world would not be experiencingthe atrocities and hardships that are experienced every day. Innocentpeople would not encounter suffering since God’s divine protectioncan prevent the occurrence of such suffering. The author makes aclaim that God is not good at all, and if he was a being with goodintentions, no person can face challenges in life as he would helppeople overcome these challenges. God’s limitations, according toMcCloskey, emanate from the fact that there are many problems beingencountered by the same people who refer to themselves as ‘His.’He argues that even though people believe in God, they are notguaranteed of their safety, security, as well as strength (McCloskey,1968). Therefore, people’s allegiance to God should decline. Withsuch a claim, the argument made by McCloskey is somehow flawed sinceit is not possible to live in a world without suffering. There aremany instances where God helps his people avoid suffering, andalthough people suffer in some cases, their belief in God strengthensthem and eventually enables them to deal with a challengingsituation.

Fromthe article, it is clear that the author objects the teleologicalargument and its claims. He argues that this argument is notsatisfactory enough, especially with regard to premise in which it isbased. It is not appropriate to argue that purpose and design areevident. Although there are things that were considered as evidenceof evidence and design in the past, they are no longer applicable inthe age after the emergence of the evolution theory. The arguments inthe article claim that, in the present world, there are no genuineexamples of design and purpose. Based on McCloskey’s point of view,the existence of God should be supported by indisputable evidencethat reflects God’s presence and his ability to control worldevents. The demands that the author points out as the maindeterminant of God’s existence are not achievable (McCloskey,1968). It is challenging to provide evidence that is undisputed onthe existence of God. Sufficient proof is not easily attainable andpeople should just believe in the existence of God.

Iam in disagreement with the problem of evil as discussed by McCloskeyin the article. The existence of God does not necessarily imply thatthe world should not experience evil. This is because there are manyhumans who occupy the world and their nature determines whether ornot evil will be experienced. God manifests himself in times ofchallenges and helps those who believe in him and spiritual doctrinesto overcome evil. For example, God’s presence becomes evident whenpeople encounter challenges and call on him for divine intervention.With faith, believers are freed from the evil and overcome theproblems that they may be encountering. On numerous occasions, thepowers of God surpass those of the evil, and this leads torestoration of the former state.

Inthe article, McCloskey also evaluates the issue of free will, anattribute that should be possessed by all people. Free will should beaccorded to humanity on this regard, therefore, the articleevaluates why it is crucial for God to create agents of free will inorder to enable people choose the right things to do. However, sincesuch agents do not exist, the author argues that God is notrighteous. McCloskey claims that there would be few evilcircumstances and the degree of evil would be reduced if there arefree will agents to teach people what is wrong and what doing rightentails. The author argues that there are things that God has notrevealed to humanity, and as such, he conceals some of his attributesto the people of the world. To some extent, I agree with this claimsince there is no single human being who can claim to know the truenature of God. Nonetheless, it is impossible to know God’s truenature since he is a complex being and understanding him is not thatpossible (McCloskey, 1968).

Accordingto McCloskey, the atheistic belief tends to offer more comfort andassurance than believing in God. This emanates from his belief thatthe world is hopeless to the extent that it seems Godless. I do notsupport this claim since a majority of people in the world subscribeto some religious faith and believe in the existence of a naturalbeing. The ability of humans to be careful of what they do happensbecause they believe in God. This is why people realize that causingharm to other contravenes religious beliefs since such an act is notGodly. Life could also not be worth living if there is no existenceof God. There exists a creator who determines how people will coexistwith one another. If there was no God, the world would not beharmonious.

Inconclusion, the article has highlighted the beliefs in the existenceof God and revealed the objections of some philosophers regardingGod’s existence. In the article, McCloskey has expressed hisobjection to the cosmological and teleological arguments. Accordingto him, God does not exist and this can be explained by the fact thatpeople encounter a lot of suffering in the world. The author goesahead to claim that, if God existed, there would be few evils. Thearguments of the philosopher lack some basis and can be considered asinvalid. The conditions he claims can prove the existence of God arenot easily achievable. As such, it can be concluded that God existssince the arguments in support of an almighty creator are morepowerful and have adequate proof than arguments that refute such aclaim.


McCloskey,H. J. (1968). OnBeing an Atheist. NewYork: Wiley.