We now have an apologetics study group on Facebook called: (CASA) Christian Apologetics Study Alliance. I’ve been meeting more people that would like to get into apologetics but just don’t know where to start. Additionally, a number of folks are flat out intimidated by some of the more complex arguments of scholars like William Lane Craig, Gary Habermas, N. T. Wright etc. So, with that, I created this group to help facilitate the beginners–I’m a layman myself but not quite a beginner–in getting their feet wet in this field of study. While we warmly welcome the more scholarly types (we definitely need these folks in our group too!), our primary focus is to cater to the newbies.
I’ve been watching The Atheist Experience consistently for a handful of months now (I’ve watched short clips of it before but not full episodes) and I’m rather amused by what I see. I’m sad to say that the majority of the Christians who call in, are generally making bad arguments. I recently heard someone say that the main host of “TAA” (Matt Dillahunty) has made a career of going after low hanging fruit. Some may be offended by such a statement, but this person is trying to convey that there are too many Christians making terribly uninformed arguments on the program. Arguments that, are not the best that Christianity has to offer. However, there have been some good arguments brought forth as well, but at times were not properly unpacked in my opinion. In the rare case that a good argument has been brought forth, and in a cogent way, the caller has often been interrupted and subsequently muted. Following that, handfuls of logical fallacies have been offered by the hosts while improperly calling out ones that are not.
Photo Attribution: http://twitpic.com/ajwh7p
Yet another tactic that I see atheists use against God and religion, is visualized in the picture on the right (You’ll have to click on it a few times to read it) This picture is apparently trying to convey that the quality of life in these societies is better because they’re some of the least religious countries in the world. Such reasoning is quite problematic however, for various reasons. I think one of the biggest issues is finding/proving the causation for this assertion. I would like to know how they linked the two together. Did this study (or studies) take into account: the various cultural, economical, or social issues etc?
Does it follow that since the people in these countries are irreligious, then they are automatically atheists? Were such people specifically polled about their apparent atheism or just their non religious status? To be fair, this might not be the point of the picture (rather, that lacking religion equals a better way of life) but does this make a case for atheism if these people are just not religious, yet not atheists either? It could conceivably be a case against organized religion while being silent for the case of atheism. I know tons of people that don’t consider religion important at all, yet still maintain their religious status (when pressed; yet in a nominal fashion) of their heritage or upbringing. Was this scenario taken into consideration?
Photo Attribution: Wikipedia
The Debunking Usually Goes Like This:
1. If A Photo Was Shown – It was photoshopped.
2. When A Video Is Provided – It’s edited, not an authentic video.
3. Isolated Witness Testimony With Corresponding Data Presented – It’s those vulnerable individuals who are influenced by tradition of mythos and folklore.
4. Multiple Eyewitness Accounts That Were Simultaneous – Delusional subjects and mass hysteria.
5. All Four Conditions Occur – Appeals to “Naturalism In The Gaps” are asserted…denial, denial, and denial!
Because sometimes the skeptic wishes to remain one at all cost
BELIEVER: Hey did you hear they found a huge boat in the mountains of Ararat?
SKEPTIC: So what’s your point?
BELIEVER: That it’s Noah’s Ark and the dimensions match up perfectly to the description in the Bible.
SKEPTIC: Ahh that doesn’t prove that it was Noah’s ark. Besides, that’s just another myth from the Bible.
BELIEVER: Well, they found the name “NOAH” etched into gopher wood, in the side of the boat.
SKEPTIC: So, they didn’t find a surname did they? Still not enough evidence.
BELIEVER: I guess there just never is…
Photo Attribution: Wikipedia
One Book Of Books
One of the seemingly clever tactics that atheists use against Christians, is when they claim that “using the Bible to prove the Bible,” is circular reasoning. At face value this familiar accusation appears to be valid, but there are a number of problems with this charge however. One glaring issue is that they’re looking at the Bible as the single completed book that it is today. As we know, it took over 1500 years for the Bible (all of the 66 books) to be written  and was penned by about 40 individuals .
I’m not going to get into all of the details of who wrote what books, how they were written, etc but needless to say, it was a tedious process. The Old Testament was written primarily on scrolls while most of the New Testament was written on loose papyrus, parchment, or paper . I would like to point out that when New Testament “books” of the Bible were written, they were first written as letters with no chapters and verses etc. In the 21st Century we forget this fact. These individual letters were then compiled into books, and later all of these books were compiled into the cannon that we know/have today. So to look at these letters from a perspective of the time period that they were written -as the individual documents that they were- we see many corresponding documents that were coming from various sources, not just one.
Description: Given the probability of chance for the hundreds of fine tuning examples in the universe, the better answer is that a fine tuner tuned the tunings rather than chance or accident.