Could This Be True, That William Lane Craig "Would Not Jump at the Opportunity" to Debate Me?

Here's an email I received from an admirer of my work:
I would pay whatever the cover charge would be to see you and William Lane Craig have a two hour debate! I can readily see why he would NOT jump at the opportunity.
Could this be true? Naw, not for a second.


Eric said...

John, I too would love to see this debate happen. I heard you debate Peter May (I think) on Unbelievable, and thought you did a fine job. I was especially impressed with your calm -- almost disarmingly calm -- and analytic approach. You know WLC personally; do you think there's any chance such a debate will take place? (I've heard that Craig has an informal rule to the effect that he only debates PHDs, but I also know that he's relaxed this requirement in the past, e.g. Barrier and Tabash, and that he's not abiding by it this month, i.e. with Hitchens.)

Steven Carr said...

Why debate somebody like Craig?

In the cartoon series , Scooby Doo, the villain would always have succeeded in his plans, if it wasn't for meddling kids.

William Lane Craig, thinks his God is like a villain in a cartoon series. A few children can easily wreck his plans.

I quote Craig in 'Slaughter of the Canaanites' - God knew that if these Canaanite children were allowed to live, they would spell the undoing of Israel. The killing of the Canaanite children not only served to prevent assimilation to Canaanite identity but also served as a shattering, tangible illustration of Israel’s being set exclusively apart for God.

Craig's solution is for his alleged god to have all the children killed.

Then they wouldn't be able to wreck his plans.

Is it really showing respect to humanity by debating somebody who think it is moral to kill children if they would grow up to wreck his god's plans?

Eric said...

"Is it really showing respect to humanity by debating somebody who think it is moral to kill children if they would grow up to wreck his god's plans?"

Um, yes? I'd think it's *especially* showing respect for humanity to do so (from your perspective, that is). Like it or not, Craig is very influential; ignoring him won't do -- that will just let his ideas get out unopposed. (I don't think you'll be able to persuade the professional philosophic community to ignore hime, either -- according to Brain Leiter, he's among the 'hottest' modern philosophers when it comes to metaphysics.) It's not as if Craig would gain 'legitimacy' if John debated him; Craig already has it. So, it's precisely people Like Craig that must be debated (again, reasoning from your POV).

Deist Dan said...

I don't know why Craig even shows his face in public anymore. I have listened to him get whooped by Price, Ehrman, and Avalos. He must be a masochist.

Eric said...

Craig certainly didn't get 'whooped' by Price or Ehrman -- he actually made Ehrman look silly a few times, though I can see where a reasonable person might want to argue that the debate was a draw, or that either Craig or Ehrman won by a small margin (same with Price) -- and, if anything, it was Craig who 'whooped' Avalos. After Craig preempted Avalos's use of -- well, of what can only be described as underhanded tactics designed to fool lay audiences -- Avalos was unable to get anything going. Avalos's weak defense of positivism (what he called 'critical rationality') was easily dismantled by Craig (using dispositive arguments familiar to every 2nd year philo student), though Avalos seemed to lack the philosophic training to understand Craig's standard refutation.

Deist Dan said...


Avalos destroyed Craig by pointing out his inconsistency in interpreting the jesus resurection as literal history and the Matthew 27 saints resurection as apocalyptic metaphor. He showed that if the criteria for Mark 16 being literal was that it was simple, and concise.....does that then prove the Mat, and Luke accounts are embellished and fiction. Craig had no answer. Avalos as exposed how Craig had no way to confirm the 3rd century manuscripts contained the same information as the non-existant originals.

Thus Craig simply gave his opinions as facts. Craig also desperately suggested that a lack of evidence for his claims did not refute his claims. Which is the same as saying...well just becauce i do not have proof for invisible undetectable martians, does not prove they do not exist. Craig trying to demand debunking of something he has no evidence for in the first place. How utterly foolish.

Eric said...

DeistDan, I'll be charitable here and listen to the debate again as soon as I get a chance before I comment on your specific points. However, I get the sense that you completely misunderstood this:

"Craig also desperately suggested that a lack of evidence for his claims did not refute his claims."

This isn't an act of desperation, but an elementary point of logic. In other words, it's true. Again, I'll get back to you on this after I listen to the debate again. It's been a while since I've heard the debate (and I only heard it once), so my evaluation of it may be off (though, from what I can remember, I thought Craig won handily).

Deist Dan said...


Craig was saying that while Avalos may refute his points (which he did), Avalos must also prove that Craig's unproven claims did not happen. That was the rediculous part. He said essentially that the lack of proof for christianity was compatible with christianity.

I recall Avalos calling out Craig on two other lies. Craig lied about the NT manuscript evidence, saying it was 99% accurate to the originals (a lie since we do not have the originals so there is no way to know how they compare). Craig also lied about James being martyred for his faith in Jesus.

With claims like this, and with the petty way he opened the debate, Craig has shown himself to be incapable of mounting a rational and honest case for christianity.