Video: In Defense of Pascal’s Wager

Many of you are probably familiar with Pascal’s wager. The famous 17th-century mathematician believed that evidence alone doesn’t fully settle the question of God’s existence. So Pascal proposed that you should bet on God because of what’s at stake. We can show his argument with this decision-making matrix. 

  • If God exists and we commit to God, we’ll experience an infinite good — heaven. 
  • If God exists and we don’t have faith, we might go to hell, and well, that’s no Bueno. Infinite no Bueno. 
  • If God doesn’t exist, then whatever we’d gain or lose would only be finite. So, the smart money says bet on God as long as the chances of theism being correct are more than zero. 

Here’s where the critics come in. For some of them, the wager fails hard.

In this video, I respond to three popular atheist YouTubers: Rationality Rules, Cosmic Skeptic, and Genetically Modified Skeptic. Rationality Rules brings up the famous “many gods” objection. Cosmic Skeptic brings up the “impossibility objection” — in other words, you can’t just choose to believe something you think is untrue. And Genetically Modified Skeptic brings up the “costs too high” objection. He argues that if one wagers they actually stand to deal a lot even if it is in terms of finite goods.

Liked it? Take a second to support Erik Manning on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!
Is Jesus Alive?