Even as my content and I have both changed and evolved over the years, I always end up finding my way back to the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s teachings on creationism. I was raised in the LCMS and only once I left did I really delve into the details of their beliefs. While it can be frustrating to return to the doctrine of my old church, I think there is something enjoyable in refuting both LCMS doctrine and creationism in general.Read more
When I was brainstorming on what to write about this week, I had the idea of doing a series responding to one of the short Christian apologetics books on my shelves. I landed on Josh McDowell’s More Than a Carpenter, which seemed like a shorter version of the famed The Case for Christ, surely featuring the same arguments that, after having educated myself some on the historicity of Jesus and the development of the gospels, should be easy to refute.Read more
When a person leaves religion or loses their faith, I’ve found that they tend to go one of two ways. Some people lose interest in religion altogether and want to get as far away from it as possible. In a way, I think this is a shame, because I’m one of the people that goes the other way; I decided that I wanted to give religion a closer look. I turned back around after walking away to scrutinize the history of Christianity and determine which parts of it, if any, are really true. And what have I found?Read more
A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking is undoubtedly one of the—if not the—best-known science books of the twentieth century. Its 2005 follow-up work, A Briefer History of Time, starts its foreword with a note on the original 1988 bestseller’s sales: “A Brief History of Time was on the London Sunday Times best-seller list for 237 weeks and has sold about one copy for every 750 men, women, and children on earth.” From the perspective of today’s reluctance to ponder the greater questions posed to us by science (and the even greater unlikeliness that one is willing to pick up a science book at all), I’m astounded that that many people sat down and read a work like A Brief History of Time.Read more
Since I first read the story of the groundbreaking 1974 discovery of possible human ancestor Lucy, I have been captivated by the study of human origins. I felt as if during my atheistic indignation at the fantastical creation stories in the bible, paleoanthropology took my hand and showed me that there is an entire field of study that strives to learn where humans really came from. I’ve been baffled that more people weren’t devouring the findings of fossil hunters. I’m afraid that that might be partly because creationist teachings have been normalized, at least in the United States. I want to help break down, clearly and understandably, why creationism holds no answers about human origins whatsoever.Read more
Back in April, I had the pleasure of meeting Freedom From Religion Foundation co-president Dan Barker. It was a fun evening consisting of a lecture on his newest book, Mere Morality, and a following book signing. At the event, there was a table where you could buy one of Barker’s books or pick up a copy of the FFRF’s periodical, Freethought Today. Also on the table were several “nontracts,” courtesy of the FFRF. Dan explained that if you’re familiar with the tracts that religious people tend to hand out, these are the same idea except… the opposite.Read more
Let me tell you a story.
I was twenty years old, and a junior in college. I was in one of Grove City’s required classes called Civilization and the Speculative Mind, a class about worldviews, philosophy, and Christian theology. I wrote my term paper for this class on why naturalism does not inevitably lead to nihilism. It was a response to the claims made by James W. Sire in the class textbook The Universe Next Door. He had made three “bridges” between naturalism and nihilism which I had set out to debunk. They were:Read more
There are a handful of famous arguments for the existence of a god. Some have been around for centuries, and new arguments are popping up every day. One such argument is the Kalam cosmological argument. A classic which has recently been re-polished and re-popularized, it has withstood the test of time in its field.
The Kalam cosmological argument sounds a lot more complex than it really is. There’s not much more to it than a simple, yet flawed, syllogism of three steps. They are: Read more
If you’re familiar with the online atheist superpower Atheist Republic, then you’ve probably heard of their book Why There Is No God, written by their founder Armin Navabi. I’ve had this book for a while, and I decided this weekend to finally read it and give my opinion here on my blog!Read more
When people find out that someone is an atheist, they usually have a lot of questions. I’ve seen in my experience that most of these questions take the offensive stance and are often accusatory. Atheists are used to hearing things like, “Where do you get your morals from?” and “Why do you hate God?” One of the most common of these quips is “How do you know for sure that there is no god?” which also takes the form of “Well, you can’t prove that God doesn’t exist, so disbelief is illogical.” These statements are the embodiment of the theist’s attempt to flip the burden of proof. Read more