That's your assertion, now please show where I have assumed this rather than it being the conclusion of the logic. No, I think the argument is invalid because it does beg the question. Intention is irrelevant. Only the actual logic is important in determining validity. Most fallacious arguments are unintended. If the logic is fallacious, yes. Intention is irrelevant. At this stage I am making no assumption as to what God is or whether God is needed or not. As far as your definition / understanding of God goes, no this premise could not include God. Your definition/understanding specifically excludes God from being covered by this premise. If we have not yet defined what God is then the question of God being included or not is irrelevant. Correct. The conclusion follows from the premise. That is not to say that the premises are true, however. Why? Since when does "problematic" mean that it should be disregarded? This would thus seem to be a type of confirmation bias on your part. And your logic / support for this is...? Please note that this "something cannot come out of nothing" is in contrast to you previously suggesting that God and nothingness are equivalent (I can't recall if it was this thread or another). Your use of the term "absurdity" is also telling, and who says it is limited to universes? All we know is the inside of ours. As for why we don't see things popping into existence - who says we don't? Or who says that we should see such things from our rather limited perspective of inside the universe? If things do pop into existence from nothing then, given that the universe is something, why should we see anything pop into existence where we are? Or nothingness. All you have done here is eliminate as a possible conclusion that which you don't like. And who says an uncaused agent is any less "problematic" or "absurd" as any of the other alternatives? Do we know of anything that is uncaused that means it is more acceptable than "nothingness" or an infinite regress? Correct, but just saying "you're wrong" isn't really doing anything to convince otherwise. It is demonstrated by Barker, as laid out in the OP. Intention is not an issue - it might have been entirely accidental, subconscious etc. Intention is irrelevant as to whether an argument is fallacious or not. Intention merely speaks to dishonesty rather than a genuine mistake / oversight. And that assumes that the question begging is there, which I think is due to the logic laid out in the OP. But convince me otherwise by all means (and "you're wrong" isn't convincing). As it stands, however, I have no evidence as to intention - but intention is irrelevant to validity of an argument.