This is the equivalent of the back of the book.
1. Especially relevant to some of Mike D’s objections are William Lane Craig, “The Ultimate Question of Origins: God and the Beginning of the Universe”. Astrophysics and Space Science 269–270 (1999): 723–740. Available online., and William Lane Craig, “What Place, Then, for a Creator?: Hawking on God and Creation”. The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, Vol. 41, No. 4 (Dec., 1990), pp. 473– 491. Available on JSTOR.
2. Additionally it should be noted that even if one holds to B-series time, a Leibnizian version of the cosmological argument may still be argued to be sound, which argues for an ultimate cause based on the Principle of Sufficient Reason.
3. Mr. D entertains the notion that “Super-intelligent aliens from another dimension” could be claimed as the cause of the universe instead of God. But Ockham’s razor would have us keep from multiplying the number of aliens beyond one. Then reflection upon the fact that such an alien would have to be responsible for the creation of all matter and energy would tell us that the alien couldn’t have a body (or at least not one made out of matter and energy), and a robust ontological argument would demonstrate that the single disembodied alien must be perfect in every way. Finally a simple argument about this alien’s relationship to time would tell us of his agency as well . So the cause of the universe would be a single super-intelligent disembodied personal alien from another dimension who is perfect in every way. Lastly, if everything derives its existence from such an alien, can it really be described as being “alien” to us? Perhaps we can assign a shorter title to such a being… maybe something with just two or three letters….
6. Craig’s remix of Kant’s first thesis is found in William Lane Craig, “The Kalam Cosmological Argument”. Wipf and Stock Publishers (1979), pp. 102–110., and an explicit analysis of Kant’s thesis is done in an appendix beginning on p. 189. Craig interprets Kant as only arguing for a beginning of the universe in time, and not for a beginning of time itself. I personally think Kant is clear in affirming both, but I don’t have two doctorate degrees.
7. These include at least Karl Popper, “On the Possibility of an Infinite Past: A Reply to Whitrow” The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, Vol. 29, No. 1 (Mar., 1978), pp. 47– 48 (who actually critiques Kant), J.L. Mackie, “The Miracle of Theism” (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1982), pp. 92–95. (whose objection is written against Craig), and the philosopher whose actual wording of the objection is cited in this blog, Charles W. Cobb, whose formulation of the objection is the clearest in my opinion (and whose objection is also written in direct response to Kant).
8. Charles W. Cobb, “The First Antinomy of Kant”. The Journal of Philosophy, Psychology and Scientific Methods, Vol. 14, No. 25 (Dec. 6, 1917), pp. 688–690.
9. We have to remember that in our rope analogy, the quality of “elapsing” is illustrated by moving our grip from one tick mark to the other every moment, terminating in the present at “0”. From there we could reason that we could have only been advancing our grip on the rope for a finite amount of time. Since, obviously, even if the rope were infinitely long, we couldn’t ever finish stroking it’s length if we were only doing so one tick mark at a time. (Perhaps a clearer way to put this is that nobody thinks you could count up from zero to infinity, so why think that you could count down from negative infinity to zero? Where would you start? According to Cobb, et al., you couldn’t start. But that just makes the problem worse! How could you make any progress if you couldn’t even get started!)
Perhaps this would be similar to how Craig takes Kant: that there is an infinitely long timeline, but anything that exists on it must begin to exist on it at some point. Thus, our universe at least began to exist, if not time itself. This would be sufficient I think to ground a cosmological argument, but Craig seems like he couldn’t be satisfied leaving it there, due to concerns perhaps beyond the scope of this blog.
10. Quentin Smith, “Infinity and the Past”. Philosophy of Science, Vol. 54, No. 3, (1987), pp. 63–74.
11. G. J. Whitrow, “Time and the Universe”. The Voices of Time, J. T. Fraser (ed). George Braziller (1966), p. 567.
12. Pamela M. Huby, “Kant or Cantor: That the Universe, if Real, Must Be Finite in Both Space and Time”, Philosophy, Vol. 46 (1971), pp. 121–32.
13. William Lane Craig, “The Kalam Cosmological Argument”. Wipf and Stock Publishers (1979), p. 200.
14. See also Luke 10:6, John 3:15, 5:29, 18, 36, 8:49, 51, 12:44, 15:23, 20:31, 1 John 2:23, & 5:9–13.
15. Hebrews 1:6 is believed by many to be a direct quotation of Deuteronomy 32:43, because the Greek in the Hebrews passage is congruent with very ancient Greek translations of the Deuteronomy passage (LXX). The object that the angels or gods (same Hebrew word) are being commanded to worship in Deut. is Jehovah. So if that verse is being quoted by the author of Hebrews to command worship of Jesus, then…
Also compare Psalm 97:7, & 110:1.
16. We know from Revelation 22:16 that Jesus sent the angel to speak to John, so the speaker that is refusing worship here cannot be Jesus. Also reference the last chapter in Revelation, when the Alpha and Omega says “Behold, I am coming!” and John replies “Amen! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”.
17. Ironically the other major world religion that calls itself “Christian” but denies the deity of Christ has been so sufficiently convinced that Jesus is Jehovah that they make the exact opposite error (not believing the Father is Jehovah).
18. In fact, the Septuagint word for “swear” used in Isaiah according to Rahlf is ἐξομολογήσεται, which is the same word Paul uses in Philipians according to Westcott and Hort.
19. Cf. also John 3:13 (NWT), “Moreover, no man has ascended into heaven but he that descended from heaven, the Son of man.”.