Tuesday, September 20, 2011

FacePalm of the Day #125 - Debunking Christianity: How Christian Apologists Work

John Loftus had posted the following on his blog. My comments are in red.

If you read Christian works you'll see something very interesting that should tell us all they are wrong. Here's what I see. First off, there are more apologists authors than there are skeptics. So they can write five or even twenty essays and books for every one that skeptics write (and produce more YouTube videos too). There are no atheist universities but there are a plethora of Christian colleges and seminaries that support these authors while they do their research. So these apologists and philosophers refer to each others works. If a skeptic hasn't read a particular philosophical or Biblical work (which are being spit out at an unbelievable rate) the apologist can point to something and say if we read it our objection would fall to the ground.

Hear that?  Yup, that is the sound of whining. 

The assumption behind this seems to be obvious. The assumption is that if we were "better" informed we would believe. Get that? If we were "better" informed then we would believe because our objections would all be answered. If that's not it then what is it? That believing means being informed, that only the informed can be saved. That the uniformed, or the uneducated, the simpleton, and the mentally challenged need to be "better" informed. And to whom should we turn to in order to become "better" informed? The plethora of Christian works being produced? Why? Don't they believe Jesus came to reach the downtrodden, the lower classes of people who were not scholars? Why then would that same God require of us to become better informed in order to believe?

Don't people like Loftus and Richard Dawkins make the same assumption that the more facts that people know  the more atheists there will be?  This isn't true either way you slice it. Further, no where does the Bible tells us that Jesus came to just scholars! The Gospel is for everyone - the educated and uneducated. Rich and poor.

Do these apologists have a clue about cultural anthropology and/or psychology when it comes to how real people come to accept religious information and/or authorities? Do they? I think not, not by a long shot.

Does Loftus? Recall Loftus often argues that people are only Christians because of being indoctrinated at a young age and by learning about the "truth" people will stop being Christians. Hmmmm. Now he's arguing the opposite that there are too many educated Christians writing in defense of Christianity. Sure wish he would make up his mind.

They are clueless, utterly clueless, especially the evangelical types. Do they really want to say that the billions of people who disagree are simply not informed? Is it truly the case that being informed is the key to salvation? Isn't that bordering on Gnosticism, if it isn't already squarely in that camp? That only the enlightened can achieve salvation?

Sure wish he would clearly state who thinks that enlightenment is the only way to achieve salvation. Last I checked the only way Christians believe that salvation is obtained  was through faith in Jesus Christ. It's statements like these that make me wonder if John Loftus knows anything about what Christians believe. As a Christian, I would say that there are billions of people who don't know of Christ, that is why we are supposed to be telling them. Besides there are billions of more religious people than Atheists. Does Loftus really want to argue that we are all wrong? Here's a hint: If your argument can be turned against your position, don't use it.

Perhaps the assumption is instead that we merely need to be correct about what we think (or believe) and this is all there is to it. Is that what they really think, that believers merely need to be right about their faith? That so long as the uniformed, the uneducated, the simpleton, and the mentally challenged are taught correctly what to believe that's all that matters?

Again, how is this different than what John Loftus has argued ad nauseum against Christianity.

Again, do these apologists have a clue about cultural anthropology and/or psychology when it comes to how real people come to accept religious information and/or authorities? Do they? I think not, not by a long shot.

These are question that Loftus should ask himself. He most definitely does not understand what he's talking about. 

They are clueless, utterly clueless, especially the evangelical types. Most people who cannot think or become better informed will accept anything that a believable person tells them, and as such, these people are truly like sheep without a shepherd who will be led to believe anything. This means that if these people are taught the "correct" beliefs then they are saved by being lucky enough to be taught them. Those who are unlucky and taught the wrong beliefs literally have little or no chance to be correct about their religious beliefs and become saved, because they are uneducated and/or simpletons.

Rather a simplistic explanation for how the Gospel has spread all over the earth. Loftus does not seem to respect people. He doesn't really think that people think about their beliefs and have reasons why they embrace what they believe.  Sad. 

So choose ye this day: Either being "better" informed saves people, or being lucky does. In either case this is not what we would expect from a good intelligent God at all, knowing what we do about cultural anthropology and psychology.

Neither saves people. Jesus saves people. It doesn't matter if you believe the Bible or not. The Bible does not say what Loftus seems to think it says. Disagree all you want but at least get it right. 

24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. 25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. 26 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27 God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. 28 ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.' As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ - Acts 17:24-27

5 Moses writes this about the righteousness that is by the law: “The person who does these things will live by them.” 6 But the righteousness that is by faith says: “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’”(that is, to bring Christ down) 7 “or ‘Who will descend into the deep?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,”[d] that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim: 9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
 14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” - Romans 10:5-15

Your God is dumb. Or, he's throwing the dice with our lives.

Lofus hasn't described my God. We agree his god does not exist.  The God of the Bible is not throwing dice or making mistakes. Thanks for illustrating a facepalm, Mr Loftus.

Debunking Christianity: How Christian Apologists Work
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1 comment:

  1. “First off, there are more apologists authors than there are skeptics. So they can write five or even twenty essays and books for every one that skeptics write…”
    It has been my experience that, while less in number, the gullibility, easy believeism and sloth of many atheists make them good tacticians.
    Atheist says, “The Bible says so and so and is thus evil. And I know it’s true because I found half a verse quoted to that affect on evilbibl.com.”
    Christian says, “Well, that is a partial verse that does not contain the whole thought behind the partial statement. Let me elucidate the immediate context, the greater context, the grammatical, cultural and historical context whilst also considering genre, etc. And, by the way, upon what basis/premise to you condemn?”
    Atheist considers the vast amounts of information that the Christian provided which proves that the atheist is mistaken and says, “You are rationalizing.” This means, “Wow, I thought that I could build a mountain of baseless condemnation upon half a verse quoted by someone else—which I did not even look up for my pseudo-skeptical self—but I see that there are solid reasons for rejecting my view. But since my atheism is a negative position which collects excuses for rejecting YHVH, I will just say ‘Rationalizing’ and shrug it off. I will respond by bringing up another such issue…and another…and another…”

    “There are no atheist universities…”
    Perhaps not in the way he means it but the fact is that from kindergarten through college, public schools and universities are essentially teaching the atheist catechism. All courses are taught with specific disregard of YHVH and to being up YHVH is illegal.