Thinking Christian

Thinking Christianity for church, home, and community


Book Review: How Jesus Passes the Outsider Test for Faith, by David Marshall

Saturday, February 14th, 2015

Book Review

How Jesus Passes the Outsider Test: The Inside Story by David Marshall.

(Full disclosure: David Marshall is a friend and a contributor to True Reason, in which he wrote an early, brief form of part of the argument in How Jesus Passes the Outsider Test. This review is based on a draft David sent me before final editing, so I will not be quoting much from it.)

In the earliest days of the church there was a skeptic named Celsus whose …


Conversations with Tim McGrew About Peter Boghossian

Friday, January 16th, 2015

This entry is part 15 of 15 in the series Peter Boghossian Audio and Video!

Peter Boghossian’s Manual for Creating Atheists, published late in 2013, caught my attention for being one of the more strategically influential approaches New Atheism has brought to the table. Last week I had a conversation with my friend Dr. Tim McGrew about Peter Boghossian, in a plenary session at Defend the Faith, a week-long apologetics conference in New Orleans.

It wasn’t the first time we had done …

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Swing and A Miss? (Jeffery Jay Lowder, Secular Outpost)

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

I’m confused.

According to Jeffery Jay Lowder of the Secular Outpost, I failed to refute Schellenberg’s argument on divine hiddenness; in fact, I failed so badly I didn’t even address Schellenberg’s argument. What worse failure could there be?!

I can tell I let you down, Mr. Lowder. I’m not sure, though, how I set you up for that disappointment. After all, I didn’t actually say the blog post was intended as a refutation of Schellenberg. There are three clues that might have indicated …

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I don’t understand indifference toward Jesus Christ

Saturday, September 13th, 2014

Of all the possible ways to think about Jesus Christ, the one that baffles me most is indifference. He is the most remarkable character in all history and literature, and for that reason alone he deserves a close look. I don’t think that’s disputable. Obviously there’s debate as to whether he’s an historical character or a fictional one. The thing is, though, either way, he stands out above all the rest.

He stands out in the eyes of the other major religions. As Craig Hazen …

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Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians (?)

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

[Update July 20: I have come to the decision that before God and all readers here, I regret writing this piece. It was poor judgment at the end of an unusually stressful week. The error I made was in forgetting the breadth of the audience that would read it. I know that Christians who read New Atheist or other Internet atheist sources regularly will recognize what’s going on in this parody, because we’ve experienced the things this piece is lampooning. I should have recognized that …

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What Is the Arizona Atheist After? (True Reason Criticisms)

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

I’m having trouble figuring out what the Arizona Atheist is after in his critique of my Chapter 14 in True Reason: Responding to the Irrationality of the New Atheism. (You can read a version of that chapter here.)

He might be trying to show that my explanation was ad hoc. He mentioned something to that effect early on, but if that was his purpose, he didn’t carry it through. He proceeded to write as if trying to show that my explanation was …


It Takes More Than False Facts To Rattle Christianity’s Confidence

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014

A few weeks ago Harry H. McCall posted this challenge on John Loftus’s blog:

Explanations for Luke Breuer and David Marshall (or Any Christian Apologist) to Answer:

A. Apart from myth and superstition, please name at least one scientific discovery the Bible has given humanity.

B. Please explain how theology is a valid approach to logic, especially in making the world a better place.

C. Based on medieval monasteries, please explain why books in these libraries were organized by monks based on truth and knowledge …


What’s Going On With Peter Boghossian?

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

This entry is part 14 of 15 in the series Peter Boghossian

I can’t help wondering what’s going on with Peter Boghossian.

In his debate with Tim McGrew on Justin Brierley’s Unbelievable a few weeks ago, he made no defense of his “pretending to know” definition for faith.

In that debate he made a move toward backing down on his definition, “belief without evidence.” Shortly after that his good friend James Lindsay said he really intended it to …

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The Curious Case of the Atheist Who Denied Dawkins Was Disputing Deity

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

Curious. He denies Dawkins was disputing the deity, in a book where Dawkins clearly was doing just that.

The Arizona Atheist continues to maintain that Dawkins does not address God in The Blind Watchmaker:

I’ve been reading Dawkins’ book the last week or so, double checking to ensure I wasn’t in error in thinking Dawkins does not address god [sic], and there is indeed nothing there.

I responded to him by way of two comments on his website. Here I quote excerpts:


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