4 Things Christians Should Stop Doing

The Non-Alchemist

Have you ever had a really agitating song stuck in your head? How about having a splinter that you can’t quite get out, or stubbing your toe more than once in a single day? The frustration felt during these instances is analogous to the exasperation I sometimes feel when I hear certain Christians make the same tired (and bad) points over and over again. In this post I would like to point out what some of those are, and hopefully be able to explain why I think that believers should stop relying on these talking points. I don’t necessarily expect to convince many staunch fundamentalists, but a good blogger leaves the ninety-nine to look for the one, right?

First, there is this tendency among some Christians not to trust experts in many relevant fields. Instead of doing that, they often defer to their own novice ideations and/or the views of…

View original post 582 more words

The Problem of Evil: Red Herring Objections

Reasonably Doubtful

I’m working on an essay that synthesizes all of my thoughts on the problem of evil and suffering. Since I’ve already posted a lot of the writings that will be in the essay, I figured I’d publish the rest of the essay serially. So here’s the part on red herring objections to the problem of evil and suffering.

God Is Not a Moral Agent”

Some theists claim that God is not a moral agent, which means that he has no moral obligations. A nontheist can ask theists who make this claim, “Is God morally obligated to not torture children for fun?” A theist who claims that God is not a moral agent will likely say something along the lines of, “No, but torturing children for fun is against God’s nature. However, making our universe the way it is was not against God’s nature.” This is question begging, as the…

View original post 661 more words

Is Yahweh A Perfect Being?

The Non-Alchemist

Playing the role of an atheist in a devil’s advocate debate, Randal Rauser made an argument that even if theism is true, Yahweh can’t be God. Though he focused specifically on punishment, it was essentially an argument from moral perception to the conclusion that a perfect being could never possess the attributes that Yahweh is depicted as possessing. I’ve written about moral issues in the Bible before, so I thought it would be fun to put my own spin on this (using the same underlying logic and making similar points of course). However, I will choose to be more specific in what I’m criticizing here since there are ways around his initial framing of the argument [1]. So here’s my version:

  1. If God exists, he is perfectly good
  2. The deity worshiped by conservative Christians is not perfectly good [2]
  3. Therefore, the deity worshiped by conservative Christians is not God

Premise…

View original post 966 more words

Conversion Stories vs Deconversion Stories

The Truth Seeking Atheist

Christians do seem to love conversion stories. It seems I can’t read the web pages of most (but certainly not all) apologists and ministries without reading some story about how an “angry atheist” found Jesus, and has found peace. It certainly seems to make other Christians feel good about their beliefs when other people also find reasons to believe.

While I grant that Christianity is growing, largely because of birth rates in Africa, and evangelical conversion efforts in east Asia, looking closer to home the picture isn’t so rosy, as the religious “none’s” have been growing significantly over the last two decades, mostly at the expensive of Christianity. I’m sure, if I looked hard enough, I could find at least two deconversion stories for every western conversion story that is presented.

But here’s the thing: These stories don’t tell us what is true. The fact that people are convinced of…

View original post 211 more words

“You Don’t Understand Christianity”

The Truth Seeking Atheist

I’ve been in conversations with “sophisticated” theologians, where I’m often told that I have a poor understanding of Christianity, and that my criticisms aren’t valid. That if I just understood the ideas, and read better apologists, I would get it right. Frankly, the idea that we need a sophisticated understanding of Christianity in order to criticize it, but be completely ignorant in order to accept it, seems absurd to me.

Can somebody please explain to me how a supposedly omnipotent, omniscient, creator of everything has such a complex message that it cannot be understood clearly by everyone? If we’re talking about the most important message for humanity that cannot be clearly understood and accepted by everyone, this doesn’t speak well towards the idea that God is behind it. The message of Christianity appears very much to be the product of trying to retcon (and work within the confines of) the…

View original post 211 more words

It’s A Miracle! … Or Is It?

The Non-Alchemist

If you’ve been paying attention to Kenneth Copeland’s shenanigans lately, you’ll likely know that he has executed judgement on Covid-19. “It is finished, It is over” he thunderously declared. The spirit life (whatever that means) of Covid-19 died “at exactly 12 noon, on the 29th day of March” [1]. Uhuh, and I saw Jesus Christ in my toast this morning. Unfortunately for the human race, Copeland’s specific brand of supernaturalism isn’t as unique as we might hope.  Of course, there are an uncountable number of religious people who don’t engage in tomfoolery like this, but who nevertheless base their entire lives on a core collection of miraculous claims. Is this wise? They sure seem to think so. Well, whatever your beliefs happen to be, my aim in this post is to give several reasons why everyone should have a strong skepticism towards all miracle claims [2].

Right off the bat…

View original post 1,019 more words

The Sly Circularity of the Kãlam Cosmological Argument

Cosmic Skeptic

starfield-stars-space-universe

‘The universe has a cause.’ The claim seems uncontroversial enough. David Hume was perhaps more right than he could have known when he wrote of the human mind’s proneness to associate cause with effect regardless of whether it has a rational basis for doing so (which it ultimately does not); increasing evidence suggests that the principle of causality may well be something not learned through experience, as he had suggested, but biologically and psychologically inherited, which would render us creatures made naturally uncomfortable by the prospect of a cause occurring without its corresponding effect, or, more relevantly, the reverse. It is upon this intuitive inclination—an inclination which, it is worth repeating, has no basis in rational thought—that rests one of the most popular and persuasive arguments for the existence of a supernatural first mover (or, more bravely, a god): the kalãm cosmological argument.

View original post 882 more words