Ray Comfort and the “trickster”
As readers may remember, or at least those who know how I commonly debate theists, I use an argument I call the “Wizard of Oz” argument. For those unfamiliar with it, I encourage you to read my blog where I first brought this argument to light. While I am sure other rational thinkers out there have come up with similar arguments like this long before me, this is my version and my personal favorite argument.
Anyway, the core point of my argument is against all theists, particularly those who claim they “know” God exists. My argument points out that it is impossible for them to know such things, and their baseless declarations basically means they are liars.
The “Wizard of Oz” argument basically asks the question “how do you know that?” to theistic claims. Christians like Ray Comfort love to state things about their God as matters of fact, to which I respond with a simple question “how do you know that, how do you know you are not being lied to?”
I’ve asked this question to theists all the time, and it seems that this sort of question has reached the facts-free Ray Comfort Facebook page – including a response answer to the question, as you can see in this picture.
So the question, in other words, is basically “how do you know this being is not deceiving you into believing he is good?”
Ray’s answer: trust
I have two angles I can respond to this.
My response to Ray: how dim-witted can you get?
No matter how much you trust a trickster, the trickster is still a trickster. No matter how much you trust an imposter, it is still an imposter.
How about if I put it in Christian terms: if Satan told you he (not God) is good and only he could save your soul from eternal torment, would every trust in existence mustered together change the fact Satan (the Father of Lies) could be lying to your face?
If your answer is “no” then you’ve demonstrated no matter how much trust you put in some thing, it does not change a damn thing.
By the same extant, Ray Comfort is saying you must put your “trust” in some invisible hidden entity you cannot see or even prove that exists in the first place. This is not a rational response. It is no more rational than putting your trust in the purple men on Pluto protecting our galaxy from extraterrestrial invaders.
So, Ray Comfort is saying, just “trust” that God is God and he is not lying to you. Well, based on mathematics, Ray Comfort is stating just put in your trust in a thing that basic mathematics proves the chances of it being real is practically absolute zero.
On top of asking to put your trust in something that does not exist, he is declaring that you trust that this thing is not a trickster – even though there is no way of knowing that this entity is really what it says it is.
Put your trust in that? And Ray Comfort thinks that is the smart thing to do? That is not smart, or for that matter rational. It is sheer madness and foolishness. There is no way to comprehend how stupid it is.
My second and final response to Ray Comfort’s answer “It is impossible for God to lie.” Remember the Wizard of Oz repeated argument, “how do you know that?” Once again, it must be applied here, how do you know that it is impossible for God to lie?
Who decided that it is impossible for God to lie? Who told us that? There is one source, and ONLY one source that insists that it is impossible for God to lie? The Bible. And who supposedly wrote the Bible? It was written by men.
Of course, Ray Comfort will say that it was God who wrote the Bible. So, we have the author writing his own resume down, and mankind is incapable of verifying or validating it. Think about it. If God (or whatever it is) is a liar and/or a trickster, then would it seem expected that it would include in its one published message book to humanity that it cannot lie? It is the perfect cover up. It is essentially like a jewel thief claiming he is completely incapable of stealing anything. A trickster with no doubters is the best trickster of all.
So once again, we are back to square one: how do you know that God, assuming that it exists, cannot lie?
When a politician promises that they are honest, sincere, represent the people AND cannot be bought by big corporations, we are capable of catching them lying in action. It happens all the time in the United States, congressmen bending to the wills of their fundraisers over the American people. We can follow the money and record what they voted for. However, has anyone ever stepped outside of the universe to do a independent background check on God? Can anyone name anyone who monitored and checked God to see if he ever lied, even once? Who declared that it is impossible for God to lie? Who can verify and validate such a claim?
Even if you point to his one and only published book to humanity was flawless and without error, how would that prove anything? Even if every event recorded and predicted in the Bible turned out to be true, and one day when you die your soul crosses over…. and you find yourself in gloomy Hades. The trickster may have provided you with a very persuasive book that does not have any errors, but the whole text was just a ruse from that start. It did not matter how much you believed you would end up in Heaven, the moment you repented to God you were actually repenting to the trickster’s alias and thus dooming your soul forever to the dark depths of Hades simply because you were foolish enough to trust it.
Ultimately, Ray Comfort’s entire response “how do you know He’s not lying to you and making you think you know the truth?” remains unanswered.
Granted the God hypothesis has not been proven or met the burden of proof, assuming for the moment there is a God, Ray Comfort has not provided any justifiable or supported answer to the question if God could be lying/tricking all believers.
Ray Comfort is only pretending to know certain things about God, and lying to all his viewers that he knows something he obviously does not know.
All Ray Comfort is doing, is declaring certain things about the God he created in his own head. Ray can say his God never lies, his God is all knowing, his God rides on a space ship, whatever he wants to imagine. Unfortunately for Ray, the fantasies and imaginations in his head has no bearing on the rest of humanity.