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The Non-Existence of God

Nicholas Everitt (Routledge: Dec 22, 2003), 352 pages.

Is it possible to prove or disprove God’s existence?  Arguments for the existence of God have taken many different forms over the centuries: the ontological, cosmological and teleological arguments; arguments which invoke miracles, religious experience and morality; and prudential arguments such as Pascal’s Wager. On the other hand are the arguments against theistic belief: the traditional problem of evil; the logical tensions between divine attributes such as omnipotence, omniscience and eternity; and arguments from the scale of the universe. In The Non-Existence of God, Nicholas Everitt reconsiders all of these arguments and examines the role that reason and knowledge play in the debate over God’s existence. He draws on recent scientific disputes over neo-Darwinism, the implication of “big bang” cosmology, and the temporal and spatial size of the universe; and discusses some of the most recent work on the subject, such as Plantinga’s “anti-naturalism” argument in favor of theism. Everitt’s controversial conclusion is that there is a sense in which God’s existence is disprovable, and that even in other senses a belief in God would be irrational.

Table of Contents

    • Preface
    • 1    Reasoning about God    1
    • 2    Reformed Epistemology    17
    • 3    Ontological Arguments    31
    • 4    Cosmological Arguments    59
    • 5    Teleological Arguments    85
    • 6    Arguments to and from Mircles    112
    • 7    God and Morality    128
    • 8    Religious Experience    150
    • 9    Naturalism, Evolution and Rationality    178
    • 10    Prudential Arguments    191
    • 11    Arguments from Scale    213
    • 12    Problems about Evil    227
    • 13    Omnipotence    255
    • 14    Eternity and Omnipresence    269
    • 15    Omniscience    286
    • 16    Conclusion    301
    • Notes    307
    • Bibliography    313
    • Index    321