Wondering if

I’m wondering, because of a discussion with Don in the comments, if there is a valid distinction between saying ‘there is no good evidence that “God” (as commonly understood) exists’ and affirmatively claiming that ‘God’ doesn’t exist. I think there is, but I’m wondering if I’m cheating in thinking that.

Surely not, though. Not least because it is perfectly possible to know there is no evidence for something without taking that as evidence for not-something. There is no evidence for an infinite number of things (that someone had a particular thought a year ago, for instance) that may well be true just the same.

God of course is somewhat different, since given the usual definition of God, we know that there would be evidence if a God so defined wanted there to be evidence. An omnipotent God must be able to produce evidence of itself – so in the case of a God so defined, the lack of evidence is a little suspicious. Either it’s playing silly games, or it doesn’t exist; both possibilities are disconcerting for believers.

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