In this anthology of recent criticisms aimed at the reasonableness of Christian belief, a former evangelical minister and apologist, author of the critically acclaimed Why I Became an Atheist, has assembled fifteen outstanding articles by leading skeptics, expanding on themes introduced in his first book. Central is a defense of his "outsider test of faith," arguing that believers should test their faith with the same skeptical standards they use to evaluate the other faiths they reject, as if they were outsiders. Experts in medicine, psychology, and anthropology join Loftus to show why, when this test is applied to Christianity, it becomes very difficult to rationally defend. Collectively, these articles reveal that popular Christian beliefs tend to rely on ignorance of the facts. Drawing together experts in diverse fields, including Hector Avalos, Richard Carrier, David Eller, and Robert Price, this book deals a powerful blow against Christian faith.
The God Delusion caused a sensation when it was published in 2006. Within weeks it became the most hotly debated topic, with Dawkins himself branded as either saint or sinner for presenting his hard-hitting, impassioned rebuttal of religion of all types. His argument could hardly be more topical. While Europe is becoming increasingly secularized, the rise of religious fundamentalism, whether in the Middle East or Middle America, is dramatically and dangerously dividing opinion around the world. In America, and elsewhere, a vigorous dispute between 'intelligent design' and Darwinism is seriously undermining and restricting the teaching of science. In many countries religious dogma from medieval times still serves to abuse basic human rights such as women's and gay rights. And all from a belief in a God whose existence lacks evidence of any kind. Dawkins attacks God in all his forms. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the supreme improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry and abuses children. The God Delusion is a brilliantly argued, fascinating polemic that will be required reading for anyone interested in this most emotional and important subject.
Alister McGrath and Joanna Collicutt McGrath present a reliable assessment of The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins, famed atheist and scientist, and the many questions this book raises--including, above all, the relevance of faith and the quest for meaning.
Religious scholar Hart argues that contemporary antireligious polemics are based not only upon conceptual confusions but upon facile simplifications of history and provides a powerful antidote to the New Atheists' misrepresentations of the Christian past.
The Bible is the most overrated book in the world, and Jesus of Nazareth the most overrated person in world history. These are some of the propositions which the author, who has a doctorate in theology, formulates in his examination of the Christian religion. In a very readable and often humorous style the book asks whether the Bible really is such a good, ethically valuable book, as the Churches always claim, or whether the God of the Old Testament is not rather an irascible war god while the New Testament announces the destruction of all unbelievers at the end times: "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mark 16: 16). The book also asks whether the Churches are right to invoke that Jesus of Nazareth whom they announce as the Son of God. After all, academic research has long established that the real Jesus was very different and had almost nothing in common with the Jesus of the Churches. Christianity has been driving through history without a driver's licence. This book is addressed both to believers who do not shy away from confronting uncomfortable facts, and to those people who have nothing to do with the Church and who have always suspected that something in Christianity is not quite right.
For about two decades John W. Loftus was a devout evangelical Christian, an ordained minister of the Church of Christ, and an ardent apologist for Christianity. With three degrees--in philosophy, theology, and philosophy of religion--he was adept at using rational argumentation to defend the faith. But over the years, doubts about the credibility of key Christian tenets began to creep into his thinking. By the late 1990s he experienced a full-blown crisis of faith. In this honest appraisal of his journey from believer to atheist, the author carefully explains the experiences and the reasoning process that led him to reject religious belief. The original edition of this book was published in 2006 and reissued in 2008. Since that time, Loftus has received a good deal of critical feedback from Christians and skeptics alike. In this revised and expanded edition, the author addresses criticisms of the original, adds new argumentation and references, and refines his presentation. For every issue he succinctly summarizes the various points of view and provides references for further reading. In conclusion, he describes the implications of life without belief in God, some liberating, some sobering. This frank critique of Christian belief from a former insider will interest freethinkers as well as anyone with doubts about the claims of religion.
According to recent polls, the number of atheists and agnostics has more than doubled in the United States in the last twenty years. A coterie of their intellectual spokesmen have mounted a multifaceted attack on the Christian faith in a book entitled The Christian Delusion, which the atheist philosopher, Michael Martin, described as "arguably the best critique of the Christian faith the world has ever known." Dr. Hanna dismantles their arguments one by one, not only clearly exposing the fallaciousness of their contentions but also indicating how their failed case carries implications that furnish positive support for biblical Christianity. This book is more than a set of refutations; it provides a wide-ranging theological and philosophical purview that both biblical theists and anti-Christians need to take seriously, not only in order to understand the current debates but also to reflect on crucial issues relevant to one's own life and destiny. _______________________________________________________________________ Mark M. Hanna, now devoting full time to writing, was a professor of philosophy for many years at California State University and Talbot School of Theology. He also taught at the University of Southern California, where he earned M.A. degrees in philosophy and world religions and a Ph.D. in philosophy. He lived in the Middle East for four years, earning his B.A. at the American University in Beirut. He has lectured in numerous universities and theological schools around the world. He is the author of Crucial Questions in Apologetics and The True Path: Seven Muslims Make Their Greatest Discovery. *************** "This is masterly and brilliant...." --Norman L. Geisler, Ph.D. "A devastating critique of the critics...." --Gary R. Habermas, Ph.D. "A stunning achievement...It is a model of irenic, tough-minded, well-informed argumentation...." --J. P. Moreland, Ph.D. "Give this book a careful reading ...." -- Dallas Willard, Ph.D
In this successor to his critically acclaimed anthology, The Christian Delusion: Why Faith Fails, a former minister and now leading atheist spokesperson has assembled a stellar group of respected scholars to continue the critique of Christianity begun in the first volume. Contributors include Victor Stenger, Robert Price, Hector Avalos, Richard Carrier, Keith Parsons, David Eller, and Taner Edis. Loftus is also the author of the best-selling Why I Became an Atheist: A Former Preacher Rejects Christianity. Taken together, the Loftus trilogy poses formidable challenges to claims for the rationality of the Christian faith. Anyone with an interest in the philosophy of religion will find this compilation to be intellectually stimulating and deeply thought provoking.
Is faith delusion? Is religion bad for your health? How, in a scientifically and technologically advanced age, can people still believe in God/spirit/'other'? Clearly not all believers are primitive and ill-educated; an alternative explanation is that they must be mad, or at least severely neurotic (as suggested by Freud). This book starts by looking at, and giving reasons for, the connection and the division between Christian faith and psychiatry. It asks whether science challenges Christians involved with psychiatry, as patients or professionals, and whether the spiritual needs of patients are recognised. The author examines the scope and use of the neuro-sciences and considers cause and effect, natural selection and determinism. He explores the overlap (and the difference) between psychiatric symptoms and religious belief, the possible association between demon possession and mental illness, and the idea that some people are intrinsically religious and some are not. The variations of personality are examined, with their implications for belief. Posited as a statement, that faith is delusion is always hostile, but outcome studies (reviewed here) show that in general religious belief and practice convey good mental health. Religious faith and mental illness are different, and their concepts come from different world-views. A consideration of them in relation to each other is long overdue. The author is a former Professor of Psychiatry and President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and has also been Chairman of their Spirituality and Psychiatry Special Interest Group, so is exceptionally well qualified to address the subject. Although the book is technically proficient, it is aimed at the general reader and is illustrated with stories, brief case histories and anecdotes.
Bestselling author David Berlinski's wise and witty assault on the pretensions of the scientific atheists Militant atheism is on the rise. In recent years Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens have produced a steady stream of best-selling books denigrating religious belief. These authors are merely the leading edge of a larger movement that includes much of the scientific community.In response, mathematician David Berlinski, himself a secular Jew, delivers a biting defense of religious thought. The Devil's Delusion is a brilliant, incisive, and funny book that explores the limits of science and the pretensions of those who insist it is the ultimate touchstone for understanding our world.
What is the "gay Christian" movement, and why is it now being accepted as an alternative lifestyle within many churches? Author and counselor Joe Dallas, in a loving and biblical manner, spells out what pro-gay theology is and how to confront it, then examines the believer's personal response and the need for bold love and commitment. He also gives detailed responses to the main scriptural arguments posed by the pro-gay movement, and evaluates the movement's impact on culture and the church.
Argues that the increasing power of Christian fundamentalists in American politics threatens the country's citizens, blames the Bible for promoting intolerance of other faiths, and describes atheism as "an admission of the obvious."