Science, Schmience

As my little cadre of readers know, my former pastor Chuck and I are engaged in a little debate around R.C. Sproul’s Not a Chance, in which Sproul takes on the idea of Chance as a factor in Existence. In doing so he contacted a scientist buddy or two, one of whom at least is also a bible-believing Christian, it seems. This guy, “Bob,” provided some commentary after reading through my blog that was half interesting, half a festering lump of offensive arrogance.

I’ll deal with the latter in a subsequent post, but I’m going to reproduce his comments here then address the points he brings up to see if they hold water. Continue reading

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Games of Chance – Ch. 2 – More Straw?

This post will be relatively brief, as there isn’t much going on in Chapter 2 save Sproul doing his best to stuff as much straw into his strawman as he can before he begins tilting at the windmill of Quantum Physics. That said, there a few items in this chapter I would like to address.

Sproul’s main aim in this chapter is to imply… well, never mind, he asserts that the entire global community of scientists has abandoned logic and reason, and that it’s up to philosophers like himself to bring them around. Good thing he’s not arrogant about it or anything, eh? Continue reading

Who Flew The Coop? The “Deconversion” of Antony Flew

Back in 2007 a book landed in the front windows of bookstores across the country, announcing that the “world’s most notorious atheist” had changed his mind and now believed in “God.”

This atheist’s name? Antony Flew.

Atheists and apologetics-minded believers everywhere turned to each other and said:

“Who?”

Well, throughout the second half of the 20th century, Mister Flew had written some philosophical papers in support of atheism and had broken some new ground in the conversation. To be fair, he was somewhat prototypical to Dawkins, Hitchens, and Dennett. But most notorious? The hyperbole runs thick sometimes. Continue reading

Changing Filters

My groceries paid for, I rolled the shopping cart toward the door of the local Safeway.  Near the door was a video kiosk.  One family was selecting a movie at the screen, and two other families were waiting for their turn.

My first thought was that this family was going to waste their night watching some mindless, devoid-of-meaning movie.  Then I was amazed as I realized my Evangelical Filter was on.  26 years of thinking of everything in light of Evangelical theology and so-called biblical meaning dies hard.

Pastor and author John Piper wrote a book a few years back called Don’t Waste Your Life.  Here’s a blurb from the back cover: Continue reading

Cruel and Unusual – Hell and Punishment

Does the punishment fit the crime?

This is a key concept in modern society.  In the name of justice, fairness, reasonableness, compassion, and many other related motivators, western society is adamant that no criminal suffer unreasonably for the wrong they committed.  Even a state willing to execute criminals finds itself concerned about limiting the suffering of the condemned.

According to Evangelical Theology, the biblical god created Hell to punish the unrighteous.  Hell is the eternal aftermath of judgment.  Since god created Hell, as his perfect punishment, one would expect that punishment to reflect his nature.  Theologically, Hell is the execution of god’s perfect Justice.  But if god is omnibenevolent, perfectly good, loving, merciful, and forgiving, as well as just, we would not be remiss to expect his final punishment to also embody those aspects too.  After all, god is who he is, and nothing he does can ever fall outside his nature.

So, how does one get to Hell? Continue reading

The Devil Made Me Do it – or – Who is Responsible for the Evil Men Do?

Continuing on from my previous post, I want to delve into the issue of responsibility.

In that post I stated the following:

“Let’s say you are an architect and you build a beautiful theater for the purpose of housing the world’s most beautiful works of musical, dance, and theatrical arts.  It is gorgeous and perfect for its purpose – the best sight lines, the best acoustics, the best of everything.  But you design into it one simple flaw – the doors open inward instead of outward.  When a fire starts, and 2,000 people are trapped inside to burn alive, who is responsible?  Did they die because they chose to go to the theater?  Or did they die because the designer created that theater with a fatal flaw?”

Obviously a conversation of this sort tends to bleed over into other topics, such as hell, eternal punishment, free will, and the like.  We’ll get to those.  I want to keep it narrow in the interest of keeping the blog posts down to a reasonable length. Continue reading