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Does the doctrine that there is no power but God's and it takes infinite power to make things where there is nothing show that God and the creation have to be one and the same thing?
 
Summary
 
The thought that God can make things out of nothing is mad.

God cannot bring something out of nothing without exercising his power and whatever comes to be has to be made of God’s power for God has infinite power. If he can make new power that is not part of him then he is not infinite. Infinite for God means all without limit. Infinite + 1 means the infinite cannot be infinite but finite. God is not infinite like an infinite line of bricks which is infinite in length but not in height or width. He is infinite in the full sense.
 
If creation pops out of nothing by magic then magic creates not God and God is not God for there is a power he cannot control. And God's infinity is still refuted.

 

A typical cop-out!

 

A Christian quote: "When we speak of the infinity of God, we are not using the word in a mathematical sense to refer to an aggregate of an infinite number of finite parts. God's infinity is, if you will, qualitative, not quantitative. It means that God is metaphysically necessary, morally perfect, omnipotent, omniscient, eternal, etc."

 

The answer is that it has to be both qualitative and quantitiave.  If your quality of love is endless then it is infinite in the mathematical sense as well.  If it were not so it would follow that love that is low in quantity is still high in quality.  The two go together.  Thus if God is an infinite number then it follows that nothing can exist that is not God.  God is nature.
 
Divine Infinity versus Creation not from anything
 
Infinite power alone can bring something into existence from nothing for the distance between it and nothing is infinite. When God causes himself or is the necessary being he would have to be infinite because he sustains himself and causes himself.

God is infinite. There is no power that is not God’s. God is spirit. God is his power. All things are made of God’s power. Therefore all things are God. Creation didn’t happen. GOD A GUIDE FOR THE PERPLEXED Keith Ward, OneWorld, Oxford, 2003 page 161 recognises that if God is really infinite he will have to include the universe or it is a part of him. If God makes something that is not him then he is not infinite anymore. There is power outside him.
 
The answer to the fact that to say God is infinite is to say he is all things and that we are God is, "God's power is indeed unlimited. But that does not mean he has all the power there is or can be. We have power and though God allows that power to exist it is not his power."
 
The proofs for God's existence from Thomas Aquinas - the proofs from causality, necessity and motion all presuppose that God is infinite. It takes infinite power to bring something out of nothing for the distance between something and nothing is infinite. It takes infinite power to bring motion from non-motion for the distance is infinite. The proofs of Aquinas are refuted by experience for they would demand a pantheistic God. Even if they could not be refuted we would have to hold that there has to be something so difficult that we cannot grasp it that explains how the proofs can be true and yet disproved by experience. Experience would come first in this for I know I exist and I know I am not almighty or all knowing or God.

It is telling that the Handbook of Christian Apologetics (page 105) when answering the view that creation is impossible does not deal with the problem of a God of infinite power who is his power making all things from nothing and being distinct from what he makes. Christians habitually ignore any problems they cannot deal with and like to give half the truth. It replies to the Greek philosophical view that creation cannot happen for nothing can come from nothing. It agrees with it that nothing can come from nothing but claims that this is only a natural law and God is the maker of nature and can go against it. The reason it gives is that God has infinite power to bring something from nothing for the distance from something to nothing is infinite. Then it says that the idea of a creator God is not irrational because it does not say that anything or even God just popped into existence without a cause.
 
The Church says that what is infinite cannot become what is finite (page 138 or Question 650, Radio Replies, Volume 1, Fathers Rumble and Carty, Radio Replies Press, St Paul Minnesota, 1938). This is its response to those who say the infinite God mutated into all things. This would be a doctrine of mutation of spirit into matter rather than a doctrine of matter coming from nothing. Surely it would be easier for spirit to turn into matter than for nothing to turn into matter? At least spirit would be something and not nothing. There are problems with spirit turning into matter. But are they as bad as the problems of nothing becoming matter? Certainly not!
 
What is infinite cannot become what is finite because that contradicts the rule that the whole is greater than the part. The infinite is like the whole and the finite is like the part.
 
When you look at a stone you see something that is finite in the sense that it does not fill all space to infinity and is infinite in the sense that the distance between it and nothing is infinite. Infinite is like starting say at the number three and counting on forever instead of counting and having never started but having counted from all eternity. It is is hard to see how a divine being that is infinite could make something that is infinite one way and not another. That is really contradicting the rule that the whole is greater than the part.
 
God is Act Not Potency
 
Christianity holds that God is act and not potency – potency means having the power to act but not using it.
 
A perfect being would have to be act and not potency.
 
If God makes something small it follows that he did not use the power to make a bigger one and so he must be both potency and act which is absurd as even the most bigoted believing Christian philosopher confesses. This consideration demolishes the necessary being argument totally. It give us reason to think that even if the argument for that being seems valid there is something wrong - or if not wrong then there is something missing in us and our elevators do not all rise up to the top floor - with us that makes us mistake it for validity. At one time, all people thought there was no higher number than ten. A cat thinks there is nothing more to life than eating and sleeping and hunting.
 
Pantheistic God cannot have Free Will
 
Creation is impossible so if God wishes to make anything he has to make it from himself. This is Pantheism which teaches that God and the universe and all in it are one and the same. God does not have free will for he cannot sin or change so it follows that we cannot have it either for we are God. What we will is really what God wills for it is God that is doing things while pretending to be us. So if we want to murder and do so it is God’s will and we don’t do wrong.
 
Pantheism
 
What is infinite cannot become what is finite because that contradicts the rule that the whole is greater than the part. The infinite is like the whole and the finite is like the part.
 
God is supposed to be an infinite spirit, that is, a being without parts and therefore having no separation in it. God can’t become parts for parts are finite. But if that is true then how can the man be different from the mouse? Even if separation is an illusion it is still evident that separation exists. God would not become the universe to suffer.
 
Pantheism is self-evidently absurd and if you want to believe in God you have to go for it. Atheism with all its problems is more rational so it should be the accepted option. Agnosticism would be unacceptable for it would imply that either Pantheism or atheism could be true whereas Pantheism is too silly to be true. If you want to believe in God you have to believe that God is the creation for to say he is not is still subscribing to Pantheism the doctrine that he is creation and adding the absurdity of God not being the creation as well. Suppose atheism for the sake of argument is not an option. To simply settle for Pantheism is the most rational thing to do for it reduces the absurdities or contradictions or paradoxes or whatever you want to call them.
 
Atheism is closer to pantheism than theism.
 
God is immaterial. The universe is matter and energy. God is wholly different from matter and so he cannot have an effect on it. The Church responds that God can for he has all power and its unlimited power. But the amount of power is not the point. If you have all the wealth in the world, it will do you no good if you need medical assistance urgently and everybody else in the world is dead.
 
Reply to "Infinite God means Pantheistic God"
 
William Lane Craig, "God’s infinity isn’t really a quantitative concept but has reference to His superlative attributes."
 
"The assumption is that anything that is bounded is finite. That is demonstrably false. The natural number series 0, 1, 2, 3, . . . is bounded by 0 but is not therefore finite. To give a physical example, a wall of bricks with an infinite number of bricks in it may stretch to infinity to one’s right but may have a front edge and be, say, only three bricks in height."

Read more: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/does-infinite-personhood-imply-pantheism#ixzz3Yhz2JcYO
 
"Christian theology has traditionally affirmed that God is infinite. But some contemporary theologians seem to think that this affirmation stands in tension with the Christian belief in the reality of a finite world distinct from God. These theologians exhibit an unsettling tendency toward monism and, hence, toward pantheism."

Read more: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/pantheists-in-spite-of-themselves#ixzz3YhzKWrMB
 
"I show that there is no reason to think that God's metaphysical infinity entails being absolutely unlimited in the radical sense presupposed by these theologians. Indeed, such a notion is shown to be self-referentially incoherent. Rather God's metaphysical infinity should be understood in terms of His superlative attributes which make Him a maximally great being."

Read more: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/pantheists-in-spite-of-themselves#ixzz3Yhza5zu6
 
There really is no separate divine attribute denoted by “infinity.” Rather “infinity” serves as an umbrella-term for capturing all those properties which serve to make God the greatest conceivable being. In saying that God is infinite, we mean that God is necessary, self-existent, omnipotent, omniscient, holy, eternal, omnipresent, and so forth. Were we to abstract these properties from the concept of God, there would not remain some further, undefined property infinity. Rather God’s infinity is constituted precisely by these great-making properties.

Read more: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/pantheists-in-spite-of-themselves#ixzz3Yi13oxmV
 
Craig is right about one thing. Something can be infinite but still be bounded. But also, it is possible for something infinite and unbounded to exist.
 
In other words, if a river of custard three foot wide and one foot deep has no beginning and no end it is infinite yes but it does not follow that it is the only thing that exists. You could imagine such a river going through the universe without it not affecting it at all.
 
The custard is infinite but bounded in the sense that other things that are distinct from it can exist.
 
If the custard is infinite but unbounded that means that nothing can exist but the custard.
 
But this thinking does not apply to God for God is the source of all existence and is not a thing in the sense that the custard is.
 
Or more specifically, God's power to cause things to exist is unbounded even if he never uses the power.
 
Suppose creation is possible. Craig wants us to believe that God can create unboundedly infinite custard and not be unbounded infinite power himself. This makes no sense and contradicts the notion that an infinite God is needed to create without using anything - that he is needed to explain creation ex nihilo. Only unbounded power can produce unbounded custard so God must have unbounded power.
 
He tries to say that God's power is not about how much power he has but about it being superlative. Superlative means it is not like any power in the universe. Even the infinite power of unbounded custard would not compare. That information is not relevant. The issue is the fact that he can make unbounded custard so he has unbounded power to call on if he wants to make it.
 
Conclusion: God is infinitely unbounded if he can create so he has infinite power and thus he is his creation. The puppy running up the lane is God.
 
Potential and Actual Infinite
 
God is not a potential infinite. A being with potentially infinite power never has all power for one more unit of power can be added to the existing series. A God who has power added to him or can have it added to him is not really God. The power must come from something other than him. If it came from him, it would not be able to be added to him.
 
God is an actual infinite. An actual infinite "is not growing towards infinity because it is infinite already. A part within an actual infinite set is equal to the whole set because it is infinite" (page 41, Philosophy of Religion for A Level, OCR Edition (Anne Jordan, Neil Lockyer and Edwin Tate, Nelson Thornes Ltd, 1999).
 
"An actual infinite is 'complete' at all times and many philosophers regard this as illogical" (page 41, Philosophy of Religion for A Level, OCR Edition (Anne Jordan, Neil Lockyer and Edwin Tate, Nelson Thornes Ltd, 1999). If these philosophers are right, then the notion of an infinite God is a complete God and is nonsense.
 
Imagine there is a bakery with that has actually infinitely cakes. The cakes are birthday cakes and wedding cakes. It would mean that the number of birthday cakes will be infinite and the number of wedding cakes will be infinite too. Even if you take a birthday cake, the birthday cakes and the wedding cakes are still the same number - an infinite number.
 
If there is a God then I am God and I can still live as an atheist!

Pantheism is the idea that God has turned himself into the universe and all that is in it. It often goes along with the idea that all things are made of the non-material God and that matter is an illusion. It says we are the one mind God and only imagine we are separate beings.

If God made all things from nothing then God is infinite power. Infinite means all power is his and there is no power outside of his.
 
This God then cannot make anything out of nothing. That would be making powers that are not his powers. If God is infinite that means there is no power but his power. God then has turned into us. If God exists then we are God. We must then be our own authority and not be looking for a bigger God to rule over us!
 
While we cannot prove pantheism, the value of the doctrine is that it shows that if God exists then we are God and immortal. It proves the possibility. Take comfort in that but go no further with it.

Try and forget about the past and the future and just be focused on the now. This is what is important - not God.

If pantheism is true then you are divine. Some say your thoughts become things, realities. When you see the suffering of the world, they want you to affirm that if it were not for the negativity that you have to turn into positive you would magic a cure for cancer, AIDS and everything else out of thin air. If you were able to be a better God, you would do better than any God worshipped in a Church. To worship such a God is to affirm that evil and suffering should be allowed to happen if he decides they should. It is very harmful. It is very damaging.
 
Pity they can't see that the negatives we supposedly use to make good out of are unimportant compared to stopping AIDS. They want us to think we do nothing about AIDS for we have no power left but that is nonsense.

 

Before the 19th Century...

 

 Philosopher David Hume made errors regarding the subject of infinity.  “The theory of mathematical continuity was not properly developed until the nineteenth century, and Hume’s troubles partly arose from his inability to see how an infinite number of parts could constitute anything less than an infinite whole.” Hume: A Very Short Introduction by Ayer.

 

If so, then even if infinite does not mean all, nobody knew that until the 1800's.  Everybody was pantheist then. 

 

CONCLUSION
 
The doctrine of creation despite being the main logical attraction to belief for those who think insufficiently is actually the greatest proof that practical atheism if not belief that there is no God should be the rule. It proves that if there is a God it is a pantheistic God - in other words, not the kind of God that has the right to ask any obedience of us for we and he are one and the same being.