Let’s take a look at one of Justin Schieber’s tweets from this morning:
Let me unpack my tweet.
Justin claims that if God exists then he needs to repent. (Repent of what? Justin doesn’t say. But we can assume this is a reference to the many evils in the world.)
The problem is that Christians understand God to be maximally perfect, a claim which encompasses all great-making attributes including moral perfection, knowledge and wisdom. Needless to say, any being that is maximally perfect (i.e. perfect in his moral nature, wisdom, and knowledge) could have nothing for which he must repent.
Consequently, it is flatly contradictory to suppose that a maximally perfect being might shoulder moral culpability which would require repentance.
We can redeem this tweet by supposing that Justin is not dealing with God in Christianity, western monotheism more generally, and academic philosophy of religion. Perhaps he is instead supposing the existence of “God” as a morally fallible being like the lowly denizens of the Greek pantheon. Should it happen that God exists, where “God” is understood to be a fallible, morally unreliable and only moderately wise and knowledgeable being, then God would have much for which he should repent.
That works. Except that Justin spends his time as a committed “atheologian” attacking not religiously and philosophically irrelevant conceptions of deity like those that crowd the Greek pantheon. Instead, he supposedly devotes his time to critiquing religiously significant and intellectually robust conceptions like that which we find in Judeo-Christian theology and academic philosophy of religion.
In which case Justin is guilty of a strawman fallacy.