In this entire debate, what seems to have gone unnoticed and unremarked is: What consequences can we draw from the purported existence of God? My answer is: none whatsoever. If the existence of God cannot be the subject of empirical inquiry, that must mean that we have no way of seeing whether God acts in any way upon the world. We have no way of knowing whether God, should he exist, could possibly care about human beings and their often sorry little world.Periodically I'll get the urge to delve into philosophical writings by men like Leibniz or Hume, but usually burn out too quickly to even finish a single selection. I find myself faced with the empiricist's inherent problem in using the natural to describe the supernatural. It seems those who posit a God and those who posit no God inevitably talk past each other on this point.
Natural methods have not proved God's existence, but it is conceivable that the supernatural has dictated that the natural be unable to detect it. I try to find comfort in Pascal's Wager, but am unsettled by the thought that God might as easily punish those who believe as reward them, so the idea that the best possible outcome for the atheist is the same as the worst possible outcome for the theist isn't convincing.
Consequently, the focus here is usually limited to the consequences of religiosity, not the validity of its supernatural claims. I'm agnostic, hoping for benevolent theism, with a reverence for Christianity captured by my inclination towards one of Lawrence Auster's responses to Dennis from the aforementioned post:
So, far from there being no truth of existence, with each culture making up and prospering by its own lies, there is a divine truth of existence, but humans cannot grasp it fully, each culture only gets parts of it. But the more a culture gets of it, the better that culture will be. And of all religions, Christianity expresses far and away the fullest measure of the divine truth of existence. Which is not to say that even the best religion cannot become distorted and ruinous, as modern, liberalized Christianity is. But that only means that Christianity must be won back from liberalism, just as our whole civilization must be won back from liberalism.Staying power has theoretical plausibility as an argument for veracity, or at least as an argument for Darwinian fitness.