Monday, January 19, 2009

If God is omnipotent, can he create a rock even he cannot lift?

Although it is not necessarily an important premise to refute the existence of God, some skeptics believe that the idea of an omnipotent God is illogical and self-contradictory. The supposed validity of the rhetoric appears to be self-explanatory, stating that if God could create a rock that even he could not lift, then he would not be omnipotent because he could not lift it. On the other hand, if he could not create a rock he could not lift, then it would contradict his own omnipotence in lacking the ability to make such a rock. It initially seems as though the rhetoric makes the entire concept of omnipotence utterly impossible.

The question is a fallacy, one in which proves to be nonsensical, much like arguments such as, "Can an unlimited God make a square-circle?" or "Unlimited is limited because it cannot be limited." Similarly, these are both fallacies that unreasonably divert from the necessities of logic, away from the true subject matter, and into the realm of semantics. As for the omnipotence of God, a rational answer depends on the interpretation in which one uses the phrase "omnipotent God". In its ordinary usage, the term "omnipotent" is defined as:

1.) Almighty or infinite power, as God.
2.) Having very great or unlimited authority or power.

God is the utmost extent of both power and being, however, in terms of having limits, by his own nature he cannot contradict his holiness. With the exception of a few particular translations, the Bible never directly referred to God as "unlimited". On the contrary, it positively mentions a number of behaviors that God cannot do - most importantly perform illicit actions and contradict his holy nature; therefore, being omnipotent, when defined as "unlimited", proves an inconsistency with the true nature of God. Specifically, in order for one to securely avoid a potential heresy, it is necessary to use the fundamentally given descriptions of God. The theory of God making a rock he cannot lift is suggesting that he can build gods larger than himself, thus a contradiction of his authoritative qualities. Not only is he the utmost existing Being, he is also the utmost idea of a Being; or in a mathematical sense, infinity plus one is still infinity, therefore God cannot vainly exceed his own power by creating entities beyond and apart from himself.

But even if he could, the better question I propose is, "Why would he?" To imply that perfection can become more perfect is self-refuting, as it is to say that the former perfection was, in actuality, imperfect; but as we established before, God cannot contradict his holiness and make himself a liar by refuting the promise of his perfection. This is nonsensical and infinitely carries on as a mere red herring against reason and the Author, the beginning and the end, of both goodness itself and logic itself.


  1. Good read.I like the point that God cannot contradict his Holiness. Very profound.

  2. Jesus Christ as a person can not lift up a stone more that 100 kg (220 lb). But Jesus Christ as Creator created every stone and can lift up any stone.

  3. A simple answer to the Omnipotence Paradox that atheists have invented is as follows:

    The definition of Omnipotence is that the one who has Omnipotence can do anything to his or her desire, even the impossible. As humans, we can't comprehend the impossible. However, God can. He can create an answer to the paradox that doesn't contradict his Omnipotence, even if we can't understand the answer.