Books by Brights

Nonbelief & Evil: Two Arguments for the Nonexistence of God

Author: Theodore M. Drange (
ISBN-10: 1573922285
ISBN-13: 978-1573922289
To Purchase: Amazon USA / Amazon UK


Two arguments for the nonexistence of God are presented and defended against possible objections.

The arguments are the familiar Argument from Evil and the not-so-familiar Argument from Nonbelief. According to the former, if God were to exist, then there would not be in the world as much evil (suffering and premature death) as there is. According to the latter, if God were to exist, then there would not be in the world as much nonbelief as there is. In the case of the God of Christianity, the relevant nonbelief would be nonbelief in a certain message (the so-called "good news of the gospel") which that deity is supposed to want spread worldwide. In the case of other deities, the nature of the relevant nonbelief would be suitably modified in the argument. The main thrust of the book is to show that the Argument from Nonbelief is every bit as powerful in presenting evidence for God's nonexistence as is the Argument from Evil.

The arguments are defended against several objections, including the Free-will Defense (according to which God permits evil and nonbelief in order to avoid interfering with human free will), the Testing Defense (according to which God wants to test us), the Afterlife Defense (according to which everything will be rectified in the afterlife), and the Unknown-purpose Defense (according to which God has some reason for permitting all the evil and nonbelief, but it is a reason which is at present unknown to us). All the various defenses of God's existence are totally demolished, demonstrating the great strength of both the Argument from Evil and the Argument from Nonbelief.

Several appendixes are provided, exploring in detail closely related issues such as the free-will problem, divine foreknowledge and predestination, doxastic voluntarism, the Bible as evidence, the very concept of an afterlife, and the so-called Fine-tuning Argument for God's existence. The book relates closely to the Brights Movement, for it demonstrates the intellectual bankruptcy of theism, and thereby the need for a suitable alternative to theism. Every Bright should be armed with the ammunition that this book provides.

See reviews of the book at its listing.

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