Although this simple argument may appear compelling at first glance, there are some fundamental problems with it. Before identifying these problems, however, it is necessary to make clear what is meant by вЂњomnipotenceвЂќ.
Christian philosophers have understood omnipotence in different ways. RenГ© Descartes thought of omnipotence as the ability to do absolutely anything. According to Descartes, God can do the logically impossible; he can make square circles, and he can make 2 + 2 = 5.
Thomas Aquinas had a narrower conception of omnipotence. According to Aquinas, God is able to do anything possible; he can part the red sea, and he can restore the dead to life, but he cannot violate the laws of logic and mathematics in the way that Descartes thought that he could.
If DescartesвЂ™ conception of omnipotence is correct, then any attempt to disprove GodвЂ™s existence using logic is hopeless. If God can do the logically impossible, then he can both create a stone so heavy that he cannot lift it, and lift it, and so can do all things. Yes, thereвЂ™s a contradiction in this, but so what? God can, on this understanding of omnipotence, make contradictions true.
DescartesвЂ™ understanding of omnipotence therefore doesnвЂ™t seem to be vulnerable to the paradox of the stone. Descartes can answer the question “Yes” without compromising divine omnipotence.
AquinasвЂ™ understanding of omnipotence, which is more popular than that of Descartes, also survives the paradox of the stone. For if God exists then he is a being that can lift all stones. A stone that is so heavy that God cannot lift it is therefore an impossible object. According to AquinasвЂ™ understanding of omnipotence, remember, God is able to do anything possible, but not anything impossible, and creating a stone that God cannot lift is something impossible.
Aquinas can therefore answer the question “No” without compromising divine omnipotence.
The paradox of the stone, then, can be resolved; it fails to show that there is an incoherence in the theistic conception of God, and so fails to demonstrate that God does not exist.
God is all powerful, and often after becoming a christian a new convert will say that “God can do anything”. But in fact he cannot. God cannot lie. He can do whatever is needed to bring about his will, or answer a prayer, a proper prayer. What need does he have in creating a rock he cannot lift? But here is a little suprise. He actually has already done it! What you lack is a real interest in understanding the bible. The bible tells us that “God was manifest in the flesh”. The flesh being Jesus Christ. Jesus was fully God and fully Human. As God he created the rock. As a man he cannot lift it.
No. He can’t. He would be going against His own Word:
“Jesus said to him, “On the other hand, it is written, ‘YOU SHALL NOT PUT THE LORD YOUR GOD TO THE TEST.'” (Matt. 4:7)
If God made a rock He could not lift, He would be putting himself to the test, and that would not glorify the Kingdom of Heaven in the least. It would also mean He does not live what He preaches, and God has always lives what He preaches. This can be evidenced in the life of Christ.
The question is nonsensical. The fact that there is no answer says nothing about God, and is simply an artifact of the English (and most other) language. If you convert the sentence into symbollic logic, you can see that it isn’t even possible to ask.
I’d like to see a 2ft strawberry chasing Micheal Jackson down the freeway. Do you think god could do that
Come on what kind of junk is this? If you are atheist and believe that you are the only one in control of your own life then can you make yourself be born and live? How did that happen then?
Did you read this from a first year philosophy book dude? Don’t you feel smart now! ROFL!
No, that’s a logically fallacy right there.
I’m atheist, but I know bad logic when I see it.
Yes, but he can’t heat up a burrito so hot that he couldn’t eat it.
.. white rock.. I bet he can’t finished sniffin em’ all.