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Can God Make a Rock So Heavy That Even He Can’t Lift It?

There are actually several different ways to ask this question. Some versions involve making a heavy rock, some involve microwaving a burrito…right about now, you guys are questioning my sanity. But, honestly, this is still a legitimate question and I’ve seen it asked quite a few times on different religion forums and I’ve seen people struggle with it. What’s the issue about answering it?

Here’s the trick people assume they’re making when they ask this question: it’s either a “yes” or “no” answer. If you say YES, then you’re effectively saying that God is not all-powerful because you’re saying that there is in fact something He cannot lift. If you say NO, then you’re saying that God cannot create everything. See the (apparent) dilemma?

I would suggest to you, however, that the problem is not in the answer. It’s in the question. The question itself is illogical, so it does not present any logical threat to religious belief. Think about it this way: the person is effectively asking you if God can be divided against Himself. It is illogical to even suggest that a rock could exist that would be too heavy for an all-powerful being like God to lift.

So…what’s the answer? The only logical answer to this question is “no”. Why? Not because God can’t create anything He wants to, but because such a thing could never exist in the first place. God cannot cancel Himself out, so His ability to create anything and His all-powerfulness (I don’t think there’s a word for what I was saying there, so I made one) can’t be at odds with each other.

God bless!


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