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ARTICLES AT THE CORE OF THINKING CHRISTIAN (Most Recent Listed First)

Okay, You’re Right: There’s No Evidence For Faith …

Okay, You’re Right: There’s No Evidence For Faith …

Part of the extended series Evidence for the Faith I thought I was about to launch into a series on evidence for the Christian faith. Recent discussion here tells me there’s one more preliminary step to take first, however. I haven’t yet defined just what it is I’m about to provide evidence for. You see, there’s one sense in which the New Atheists are right: there’s no evidence for faith. They’re right, however, only to the extent that they misunderstand…

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Seven Reasons To Give Old Testament Ethics the Benefit of the Doubt

Seven Reasons To Give Old Testament Ethics the Benefit of the Doubt

Why do Christians give Old Testament ethics the benefit of the doubt? That question came up before Christmas, as a result of discussions here on slavery in the Old Testament. There is no denying that the slavery codes in the Pentateuch seem wrong, even barbaric, to 21st century readers (most readers, that is: slavery is still a thriving enterprise of death in our world today). As I will repeat in point 4, “the benefit of the doubt” is hardly required…

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An Open Letter to Peter Boghossian On “Doxastic Openness”

An Open Letter to Peter Boghossian On “Doxastic Openness”

Dr. Peter Boghossian Portland State University Dear Dr. Boghossian, In your Manual for Creating Atheists you say it’s really important for people to be willing to examine and revise their beliefs if therre are good reasons to reconsider. On page 51 you call that “doxastic openness.” [“Doxastic” is a technical term meaning “belief-related;” you’re talking about openness related to one’s beliefs.] Again on page 69 you name “a willingness to reconsider” as one attitude that predisposes persons to rationality. On…

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Seven Steps Toward Clarifying Atheist Vocabulary

Seven Steps Toward Clarifying Atheist Vocabulary

People who stand in opposition to Christianity often have their own vocabulary for us Christians and our beliefs: magic, invisible friend, crutch, irrational, and the like. If we have different meanings in mind, conversations are more likely to lead to confusion than conclusions. Therefore I offer these questions and thoughts, in hopes of clarifying atheist vocabulary. Magic. Do you mean illusionists’ or wizards’ little tricks? Or do you mean the eternal Creator God of the universe involving himself purposefully and…

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What Does Faith Have to Do With Knowledge? (Faith-Knowledge Connection Part Two)

What Does Faith Have to Do With Knowledge? (Faith-Knowledge Connection Part Two)

What does faith have to do with knowledge? Skeptics keep asking that. In part one of this series I showed one thing obviously wrong with a certain atheistic philosophy professor’s view on the matter (more on him below). But I was asked to draw out the actual connection that exists between the two. It’s a fair question, but it’s also a daunting task, in that the follow-up question is bound to be, “If faith is tied to knowledge, then how…

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The Faith-Knowledge Connection, Part One

The Faith-Knowledge Connection, Part One

There is a strong connection between faith and knowledge. Peter Boghossian is wrong: faith isn’t pretending to know what you don’t know. I’ve been promising to write more on what faith really is instead, and in fact I have done so previously, more than once. Here’s an annotated summary of some of those articles. In all of this I am writing specifically about Christian faith, the only faith that I can represent responsibly, and the only form I care to…

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Three Reasons Freedom of Religion Matters

Three Reasons Freedom of Religion Matters

Freedom of religion matters. It is unique from other freedoms. It wasn’t chosen ad hoc for inclusion in the Bill of Rights. Freedom of religion is not freedom-of-something-or-other. I needed to say that when I saw urbanus’s comment today, in response to the statement that at least two people in the UK had lost their jobs for opposing gay marriage, Okay, but that’s not the issue. If they lost their jobs for discriminating against people who are black, or disabled,…

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Five Reasons Churches Need More Unanswered Questions

Five Reasons Churches Need More Unanswered Questions

This has the potential to get pastors fired for following Jesus’ example. It will confuse anyone who sees me as a Christian apologist, and apologetics as being in the business of giving answers. The fact is I believe we need more unanswered questions. Pastors in particular need to leave more questions unanswered. There are (at least) five reasons this is true. Jesus set the example, as seen best in the book of John. 1. To Follow Jesus’ Example Jesus’ first…

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Theist Explaining Science to Atheists

Theist Explaining Science to Atheists

Some might consider this ironic: the theist explaining science to atheists. I don’t. I don’t see any reason why it should be surprising, even though some atheists think they have a lock on scientific reasoning. Starting here in yesterday’s thread on “Five Things You Have Wrong About Christianity,” the atheists in the discussion are trying to push the idea of “scientific” prayer studies. What they’re showing is that they don’t understand how science works in such a setting. They’ve been…

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