Thursday, November 30, 2006


Article on 'The New Atheism' Published

Just a note to highlight the publication of my article on the 'New Atheism', previously posted on this blog, by Damaris Culture Watch @

cf. to watch video of the Beyond Belief conference mentioned in this article.

Steven Weinberg's shallow inaugural speech depends upon such non-arguments as the comparative size of the universe in relation to human beings (size is unrelated to value) and a misunderstanding of the Copernican revolution (which didn't remove the earth from a cosmically important centre stage, but rather elevated the earth from the cosmic sump-hole at the centre of the pre-Copernican/Aristotelian model of the universe, a universe in which hell was at the 'centre', earth one step above hell and the good stuff all happened far 'out there' beyond the primum mobile!)

Friday, November 24, 2006


The 'New Atheism': Generating More Heat than Light

‘the world needs to wake up from its long nightmare of religious belief.’ – Steven Weinberg[i]

While theism has made impressive inroads into academia (especially in academic philosophy) since the middle of the twentieth century[ii], one would hardly expect non-theists to take this state of affairs lying down. A vocal minority of atheists (primarily scientists) have recently attempted to launch an aggressive counter-strike that Wired Magazine dubbed ‘The New Atheism’ in a November 2006 cover story by contributing editor Gary Wolf:

'The New Atheists will not let us off the hook simply because we are not doctrinaire believers. They condemn not just belief in God but respect for belief in God. Religion is not only wrong; it’s evil. Now that the battle has been joined, there’s no excuse for shirking. Three writers have sounded this call to arms. They are Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Daniel Dennett.'[iii]

All three authors have released high profile books attacking religious belief in 2006 (Dawkins’ The God Delusion[iv], Dennett’s Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon[v] and Harris’ Letter to a Christian Nation[vi]) and they seem determined to revitalize the stereotypical confrontation of ‘science vs. religion’ - stereotypical because it depends upon the false assertion that, as naturalist Tom Clark writes in attempted clarification, ‘The root conflict is rather between science and faith, two different ways of justifying beliefs about the world which lead to naturalism and supernaturalism, respectively.’[vii] Most fundamentally, as Albert Mohler observes: ‘It is not so much that Dawkins is attempting to convince believers that they should no longer believe in God. To the contrary, Dawkins is attempting a very different cultural and political move. He wants to make respect for belief in God socially unacceptable.’[viii] This approach has proved to be as controversial among atheists and agnostics as it is among theists.

On November 5th 2006 what amounted to the first New Atheist conference, entitled ‘Beyond Belief: Science, Religion, Reason and Survival’, was held at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in California (with Dawkins, Dennett and Harris in attendance).[ix] This well publicized gathering, covered by The New York Times and New Scientist, addressed three questions: ‘Should science do away with religion?’, ‘What would science put in religion’s place?’ and ‘Can we be good without God?’ The consensus view was naturally that science (narrowly defined as naturalistic explanations of natural phenomena) should do away with religion (defined in terms of a ‘blind faith’ unrecognizable to mainstream Christian orthodoxy), that science should replace religion with science, and that we can be good without God because of evolutionary group dynamics. In other words, as New Scientist said: ‘science can take on religion and win.’[x] The spirit of New Atheism was perfectly encapsulated by the meeting’s opening speech, in which Nobel laureate physicist Steven Weinberg offered the concluding exultation that: ‘Anything that we scientists can do to weaken the hold of religion should be done and may in the end be our greatest contribution to civilization.’[xi]

The New Atheism combines a traditional naturalistic atheism, which asserts that God’s existence is unlikely if not outright disprovable, with a moral imperative to eradicate traditional religion, a call to arms fuelled by the undoubted intellectual and moral failings of both Christian and Muslim fundamentalism. Indeed, one of the primary arguments of the New Atheism is that all belief in God is either directly or indirectly the cause of such evil that it should be abandoned. Unfortunately, the New Atheism seems to illustrate the adage that we are in danger of becoming what we hate, with an attention-grabbing rhetorical superstructure that far outstrips the scholarship and philosophical substance of its intellectual foundations. As the United Kingdom’s Chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, comments concerning The God Delusion:

'I only wish I had as much faith as the learned professor. It would be nice to believe that if you cured people of believing in God, you would thereby have cured them of hate, violence, anger, injustice, cruelty and the urge to control, exploit, dominate and oppress. Nothing in history suggests such a thing. On the contrary, if people do not commit evil in the name of God they have never been short of other reasons to do so: race, the war of classes, the political system, the march of progress, the Darwinian struggle to survive. In the perennial battle between our lowest and highest instincts, which is the human condition whether we are atheist or believer, people usually robe their most brutal acts in the mantle of high ideals. In this respect the history of religion, like the history of substitutes for religion, is all too human.'[xii]

Or as another commentator writes concerning the New Atheist movement as a whole:

'As much as I respect the scientific accomplishments of Dawkins and Dennett (Harris, not so much), I have to regard them the same way I regard the most intolerant of the Christian right. It’s not that science is bad, but that when science is thought to be all there is, all that there can be, it becomes another religion. And it isn’t a tolerant, compassionate, or uplifting religion. It’s just arrogant.'[xiii]

Many otherwise sympathetic atheists and agnostics have critiqued the un-nuanced and stridently antagonistic rhetoric of the ‘New Atheists’. In February 2006 agnostic Darwinist Michael Ruse had a notoriously ill-tempered exchange of e-mails with Daniel Dennett in which the former labelled the latter’s book Breaking the Spell ‘really bad and not worthy of you’[xiv]:

'I think that you and Richard [Dawkins] are absolute disasters in the fight against intelligent design – we are losing this battle… what we need is not knee-jerk atheism but serious grappling with the issues – neither of you are willing to study Christianity seriously and to engage with the ideas – it is just plain silly and grotesquely immoral to claim that Christianity is simply a force for evil, as Richard claims – more than this, we are in a fight, and we need to make allies in the fight, not simply alienate everyone of good will.'[xv]

Commenting on the ‘Beyond Belief’ conference, anthropologist Melvin J. Konner lamented that: ‘With a few notable exceptions, the viewpoints have run the gamut from A to B. Should we bash religion with a crowbar or only with a baseball bat?’[xvi] Dawkins’ aggressive ‘take-no-prisoners approach (religious education is “brainwashing” and “child abuse”) was condemned by… Konner, who said he had “not a flicker” of religious faith, as simplistic and uninformed.’[xvii] Indeed, Konner castigated Harries and Dawkins during the conference: ‘I think that you and Richard are remarkably apt mirror images of the extremists on the other side, and that you generate more fear and hatred of science.’[xviii] Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium, likewise advocated a more civil approach:

'Persuasion isn’t always ‘Here are the facts – you’re an idiot or you are not,’ he said. ‘I worry that your methods’ – he turned toward Dr. Dawkins – ‘how articulately barbed you can be, end up simply being ineffective, when you have much more power of influence.’ Dawkins replied that he ‘gratefully accepted’ the rebuke.'[xix]

Joan Roughgarden, a professor of geophysics and biology at Stanford University, described the New Atheist views expressed at the ‘Beyond Belief’ symposia as depending upon:

'[an] exaggerated and highly rose-coloured picture of the capabilities of science. They are entitled as atheists to generate more activism within the atheist community, but scientists are portraying themselves as the enlightened white knights while people of faith are portrayed as idiots… [People of faith are being antagonised, and this is] a lose-lose proposition.'[xx]

According to physicist Lawrence M. Krauss the New Atheists’ approach is ‘inappropriate’ and ‘certainly not effective.’[xxi] Krauss argues that ‘Science’s success does not mean it encompasses the entirety of human intellectual experience’,[xxii] and cautions: ‘Science does not make it impossible to believe in God. We should recognize that fact and live with it and stop being so pompous about it.’[xxiii] As anthropologist Scott Atran complained:

'This is Alice in Wonderland, it’s just a neo-Christian cult. The arguments being put forward here are extraordinarily blind and simplistic. The Soviets taught kids in school about science – religiously – and it didn’t work out too well. I just don’t think scientists, when they step out of science, have any better insight than the ordinary smuck on the street. It makes me embarrassed to be an atheist.'[xxiv]

Having thoroughly investigated the New Atheism, Gary Wolf concludes:

'The New Atheists have castigated fundamentalism and branded even the mildest religious liberals as enablers of a vengeful mob. Everybody who does not join them is an ally of the Taliban. But so far, their provocation has failed to take hold… I take this as good news. Even those of us who sympathize intellectually have good reasons to wish that the New Atheists continue to seem absurd. If we reject their polemics, if we continue to have respectful conversations even about things we find ridiculous, this doesn’t necessarily mean we’ve lost our convictions or our sanity. It simply reflects our deepest, democratic values. Or, you might say, our bedrock faith: the faith that no matter how confident we are in our beliefs, there’s always a chance we could turn out to be wrong.'[xxv]

Debate about issues of religious belief can generate more heat than light, as the ‘New Atheists’ demonstrate. However, that is no more of an argument against such debate than the argument that food can choke people to death is an argument against eating. Disagreeing with a person’s views does not necessarily mean finding them disagreeable. Christians are committed to rational debate with non-Christians, because they view the cosmos as the creation of a rational God and believe human beings are made in God’s ‘image’ (cf. Genesis 1:27, Acts 17:27-28). In the bible, God says: ‘Come now, let us reason together’ (Isaiah 1:18). The prophet Samuel stands before the people of Israel and states: ‘I am going to confront you with evidence before the Lord’ (1 Samuel 12:7) According to Jesus, the greatest commandment is to ‘love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind’ (Matthew 22:37, my italics). Jesus even said: ‘Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves’ (John 14:11, my italics). The apostle Paul wrote of ‘defending and confirming the gospel’ (Philippians 1:7) and he ‘reasoned... from the scriptures, explaining and proving’ (Acts 17:2-3). Christians are commanded to ‘always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have...’ (1 Peter 3:15). The Greek word translated here as ‘reason’ is ‘apologia’, which means ‘reasoned defence’, and from which we get the word ‘apologetics’.[xxvi] Hence Christians engage in arguments about their beliefs because they are passionate about truth, and because they believe that Christianity is true. It is perfectly legitimate for atheists or agnostics to present counter arguments with the same high-minded motivation. However, one might hope for a general agreement on all sides that the bible is at least correct when it calls upon people to speak the truth as they see it ‘in love’ (Ephesians 4:15), and to engage those who have different beliefs ‘with gentleness and respect’ (1 Peter 3:15).

Recommended Resources

Michael D. Beaty, ‘God Among the Philosophers’ @

Michael Brooks, ‘This Week: Beyond Belief’, New Scientist, 18 November 2006 @

William Lane Craig, ‘The Resurrection of Theism’ @

George Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times @

Robert C. Koons, ‘Science and Belief in God: Concord not Conflict’ @ (Video)

Thomas Nagel, ‘The Fear of Religion’, The New Republic Online @

David Segal, ‘Atheist Evangelist’, Washington Post, October 26, 2006 @

Quentin Smith, ‘The Metaphilosophy of Naturalism’ @

Jeremy Strangroom, ‘Breaking the Spell: a review’ @

Leon Wieselteir, ‘The God Genome’ @

Peter S. Williams, ‘The Big Bad Wolf, Theism and the Foundations of Intelligent Design: A Review of Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion’ @

Peter S. Williams, ‘Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? Dawkins’ Failed Rebuttal of Natural Theology’ @

Peter S. Williams, ‘Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?’ @

Peter S. Williams, ‘Calling Dawkins’ Bluff’ @

Gary Wolf, ‘The Church of the Non-Believers’, Wired Magazine, November 2006 @,71985-0.html?tw=wn_index_1

[i] George Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006 & @
[ii] William Lane Craig, ‘The Resurrection of Theism’ @; Daniel Hill, ‘What’s New in Philosophy of Religion?’ @; Quentin Smith, ‘The Metaphilosophy of Naturalism’ @
[iii] Gary Wolf, ‘The Church of the Non-Believers’, Wired Magazine, November 2006, p. 184 & @,71985-0.html?tw=wn_index_1
[iv] cf. Andrew Brown, ‘Dawkins the dogmatist’ @; Terry Eagleton, ‘Lunging, Flailing, Mispunching’, London Review of Books Vol. 28 No. 20, 19 October 2006 @;
Alister McGrath, ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ @; Albert Mohler, ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ @; Albert Mohler, ‘The God Delusion Revisited’ @; Thomas Nagel, ‘The Fear of Religion’, The New Republic Online @; Peter S. Williams, ‘The Big Bad Wolf, Theism and the Foundations of Intelligent Design: A Review of Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion’ @; ‘Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? Dawkins’ Failed Rebuttal of Natural Theology’ @; ‘Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?’ @ & ‘Calling Dawkins’ Bluff’ @
[v] cf. Leon Wieselteir, ‘The God Genome’ @; Jeremy Strangroom, ‘Breaking the Spell: a review’ @
[vi] cf. David Segal, ‘Atheist Evangelist’, Washington Post, October 26, 2006 @;
The Catechizer, ‘Letter to a Christian Nation – Part 1’ @
[vii] Tom Clark, ‘Deny God, Then What?’ @
[viii] Albert Mohler, ‘The New Atheism?’ @
[ix] cf.
[x] New Scientist, Michael Brooks, ‘This Week: Beyond Belief’, 18 November 2006, p. 11 & @
[xi] George Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006 & @
[xii] Jonathan Sacks, The Times, quoted @
[xiv] Michael Ruse @
[xv] ibid.
[xvi] George Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006
[xvii] Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006
[xviii] Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006
[xix] Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006
[xx] New Scientist, Michael Brooks, ‘This Week: Beyond Belief’, 18 November 2006, p. 11.
[xxi] ibid.
[xxii] Laurence Krauss, quoted by New Scientist, Michael Brooks, ‘This Week: Beyond Belief’, 18 November 2006, p. 11.
[xxiii] Johnson, ‘A Free-for-All on Science and Religion’, The New York Times, 23/11/2006
[xxiv] New Scientist, Michael Brooks, ‘This Week: Beyond Belief’, 18 November 2006, p. 11.
[xxv] Wolf, ‘The Church of the Non-Believers’, Wired Magazine, November 2006, p. 193.
[xxvi] cf. J.P. Moreland, ‘Philosophical Apologetics, the Church, and Contemporary Culture’ @

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


Reviewing Richard Dawkins have now posted two articles by yours truly on Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion:

'The Big Bad Wolf, Theism and the Foundations of Intelligent Design: A Review of Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion'

'Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf? Richard Dawkins' Failed Rebuttal of Natural Theology'

The first is a wide ranging substantial review which nevertheless focuses upon how Dawkins' approached intelligent design theory. In sum: Dawkins cogently argues that ID is a scientific theory and fails to cogently argue that it lacks evidential support. The second article is shorter, and focuses upon Dawkins' handling of natural theology (arguments for and against God's existence). In sum: Dawkins is no philosopher and it shows.

These reviews on my arn featured author page are in addition to two reviews I've written for Damaris Culture Watch. The Damaris reviews are basically the material from the second article above divided over two articles but with some tweaks and some unique material. cf:

'Whose Afriad of the Big Bad Wolf?' @


'Calling Dawkins' Bluff' @

Whilst my theme is Dawkins, I may as well bring to your attention my other articles on Oxford's Professor for the Public Understaning of Science:

Atheism and Child Abuse

Darwin's Rottweiler and the Public Understanding of Scientism

‘Is Peter S. Williams a liar for God?’ One fallible human responds to another’s critique of ‘Darwin’s Rottweiler and the Public Understanding of Scientism’

Dawkins Ad Hominem - Misrepresented Again?

Designed or Desinoid: Dawkins, Science & the Purpose of Life

What do you believe is true even though you cannot prove it?' – Comparing Dawkins' Blind Faith to Flew's evidence

'On the Side of the Angels: Review of Richard Dawkins' A Devil's Chaplain' Part One, Part Two, Part Three

And I recommend the following resources:

Reviews of The God Delusion

Andrew Brown, ‘Dawkins the dogmatist’ @

Terry Eagleton, 'Lunging, Flailing, Mispunching', London Review of Books Vol. 28 No. 20, 19 October 2006

Jim Holt, 'Beyond Belief', New York Times

Stephen Jones, ‘My Critique of The God Delusion: Part 1’ @ & ‘Part 2’ @

Alister McGrath, ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ @

Alister McGrath, ‘Is God a Delusion? Atheism and the Meaning of Life’ @

Albert Mohler, ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ @

Albert Mohler, ‘The God Delusion Revisited’ @

Thomas Nagel, 'The Fear of Religion', The New Republic Online

David Robertson, ‘Dawkins Delusion’ @

Dallas Willard, ‘Reflections on The Blind Watchmaker’ @

Other On-Line Materials

Michael J. Behe, ‘A Review of The Ancestor’s Tale’ @

Madeline Bunting, ‘No Wonder Atheists are Angry: they seem ready to believe anything’ @,,1681235,00.html

Christians in Science – Responses to Richard Dawkins Page @

ID The Future Podcast, ‘Is Richard Dawkins Contradicting Himself by Taking Credit for Writing his Book?’ @ (Audio)

Taking on Dawkins’ God: An Interview with Alister McGrath @

Dawkins and his Disciples @ (Video)

Denis Alexander, 'A Clash of Fundamentalisms'

Dave Crofts, 'The Root of all Evil? Part 1' Part 2

Logan Gage, ‘Who Wrote Richard Dawkins’ New Book?’ @

Paul Johnson, ‘The Ayatollah of Atheism and Darwin’s Altars’ @

Phillip E. Johnson, ‘The Robot Rebellion of Richard Dawkins’ @

Phillip E. Johnson, ‘Climbing Mount Improbable & Darwin’s Black Box’ @

John Lennox, 'God and Richard Dawkins' (Audio)

Nick Pollard, 'The Root of all Evil? The problem with Richard Dawkins' faith

Jonathan Sarfati, ‘Review: Climbing Mount Improbable’ @

Roger Scruton, ‘Dawkins is Wrong About God’ @

The Dawkins-Quinn Debate @ (Audio) Transcript @

Nick Pollard Talks to Richard Dawkins @


Antony Latham, The Naked Emperor: Darwinism Exposed, (Janus, 2005)

Alister McGrath, Dawkins’ God: Genes, Memes, and the Meaning of Life, (Blackwell, 2005)

Roger Steer, Letter to an Influential Atheist, (Authentic, 2003)

Keith Ward, God, Chance & Necessity, (OneWorld, 1996)

Peter S. Williams, I Wish I Could Believe in Meaning: A Response to Nihilism, (Damaris, 2005)

Monday, November 13, 2006


Two Scientists on the New Testament

In The God Delusion zoologist Richard Dawkins tries his had and New Testament Criticism, and says things like the following:

'Ever since the nineteenth century, scholarly theologians have made an overwhelming case that the gospels are not reliable accounts of what happened in the history of the real world. All were written long after the death of Jesus, and also after the epistles of Paul, which mention almost none of the alleged facts of Jesus’ life. All were then copied and recopied, through many different ‘Chinese Whispers generations’… by fallible scribes who, in any case, had their own religious agendas… The four gospels that made it into the official cannon were chosen, more or less arbitrarily, out of a larger sample of at least a dozen… Nobody knows who the four evangelists were, but they almost certainly never met Jesus personally. Much of what they wrote was in no sense an honest attempt at history… It is even possible to mount a serious, though not widely supported, historical case that Jesus never lived at all… Although Jesus probably existed, reputable bible scholars do not in general regard the New Testament (and obviously not the Old Testament) as a reliable record of what actually happened in history… - Dawkins, The God Delusion, p. 37, 92-93 & 95-97.

In The Language of God, geneticist Francis Collins, head of the human genome project, tries his hand at New Testament Criticism, and says things like the following:

'...the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John were put down just a few decades after Christ's death. Their style and content suggests strongly that they are intended to be the record of eyewitnesses (Matthew and John were among the twelve apostles). Concerns about errors creeping in by sucessive copying or bad translations have been mostly laid to rest by discovery of very ancient manuscripts. thus, the evidence for authenticity of the four gospels turns out to be quite strong. Furthermore, non-Christian historians of the first century such as Josephus bear witness to a Jewish prophet who was crucified by Pontius Pilate areound 33 A.D.' - Francis Collins, The Language of God, p. 223.

Of course, Collins is right and Dawkins is wrong.

cf. Recommended Resources on Christianity

Apollos @
Bethinking @
Lee Strobel @

Craig L. Blomberg, ‘In Search of the Historical Jesus’ @
Gary R. Habermas Debates & Lectures @

William lane Craig, ‘The Evidence for Christianity’ @
William Lane Craig, ‘Defending the True Historical Jesus’ @
William Lane Craig vs. John Dominic Crossan, ‘Will the real Jesus please stand up?’ @
William Lane Craig & Gerd Ludemann, ‘Jesus’ Resurrection: Fact or Figment?’ @
William Lane Craig vs. Frank Zindler, ‘Atheism versus Christianity - Where does the evidence point?’ @
J.P. Moreland, ‘The Modern Search for the Historic Jesus’ @
J.P. Moreland, ‘How do we know Christianity is right out of all the religions?’ @

On-Line Papers
Richard Baukham, ‘The Eyewitnesses and the Gospel Traditions’ @
Stephen J. Bedard, ‘Paul and the Historical Jesus: A Case Study in First Corinthians’ @
Craig L. Blomberg, ‘The Historical Reliability of the Gospels’ @
Craig L. Blomberg, ‘The Historical Reliability of John’ @
F.F. Bruce, ‘The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?’ @
Paul Copan, ‘You Can’t Trust the Gospels. They’re Unreliable’ @
Paul Copan, ‘Jesus’ followers fabricated the stories and sayings of Jesus’ @
William Lane Craig, ‘The Indispensability of Theological Meta-Ethical Foundations for Morality’, @
William Lane Craig, ‘Rediscovering the Historical Jesus: Presuppositions and Pretensions of the Jesus Seminar’ @
William Lane Craig, ‘Rediscovering the Historical Jesus: The Evidence for Jesus @
William Lane Craig, ‘Contemporary Scholarship and the Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus’ @
William Lane Craig, ‘The Problem of Miracles: A Historical and Philosophical Perspective’ @
William Lane Craig & Bart Ehrman, ‘Is There Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus?’ @
R.T. France, ‘The Gospels as Historical Sources for Jesus’ @
Norman L. Geisler, ‘The Dating of the New Testament’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Recent Perspectives on the Reliability of the Gospels’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘A Summary Critique: Questioning the Existence of Jesus’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘The Facts Concerning the Resurrection’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Jesus’ Resurrection and Contemporary Criticism: An Apologetic (Part I)’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Jesus’ Resurrection and Contemporary Criticism: An Apologetic (Part II)’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Explaining Away Jesus’ Resurrection: Hallucination – The Recent Revival of Theories’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Resurrection research from 1975 to the present’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Reinterpretations of the Historical Jesus’ @
Gary R. Habermas, ‘Ancient Non-Christian Sources’ @
Greg Koukl, ‘No Lost Books of the Bible’ @
Peter Kreeft, ‘The Divinity of Christ’ @
Alister McGrath, ‘The Resurrection’ @
J.P. Moreland, ‘Philosophical Apologetics, the Church, and Contemporary Culture’ @
J.P. Moreland, ‘The Historicity of the New Testament’ @
J.P. Moreland, ‘A Legendary Jesus and New Testament Dating’ @
Dallas Willard, ‘Language, Being and God: The Three Stages of Theistic Evidence’ @
Ben Witherington III, ‘The Top 10 New Testament Archaeological Finds of the Last 150 years’ @

Books (most will be available from amazon)
Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony, (Eerdmans, 2006)
Craig A. Blomberg, The Historical Reliability of the Gospels, (IVP, 1987)
Craig A. Blomberg, The Historical Reliability of John’s Gospel, (Apollos, 2001)
Paul Copan (ed.), Will The Real Jesus Please Stand Up? A Debate between William Lane Craig and John Dominic Crossan, (Baker, 1998)
Paul Copan & Ronald K. Tacelli (ed.’s), Jesus’ Resurrection: Fact or Figment? A debate between William Lane Craig & Gerd Ludemann, (IVP, 2000)
William Lane Craig, The Son Rises, (Wypf & Stock, 2000)
Stephen T. Davies, Risen Indeed: Making Sense of the Resurrection, (SPCK, 1993)
Norman L. Geisler, Christian Apologetics, (Baker, 1995)
R. Douglas Geivett & Gary R. Habermas, In Defence of Miracles: A Comprehensive Case for God’s Action in History, (Apollos, 1997)
Douglas Groothuis, On Jesus, (Wadsworth, 2003)
Gary R. Habermas: Ancient Evidence for the Life of Jesus: Historical Records of His Death and Resurrection, (Thomas Nelson, 1984)
Gary R. Habermas and Anthony Flew, Did Jesus Rise from the Dead? The Resurrection Debate, (ed.) Terry Miethe, (Harper & Rowe, 1987)
C.S. Lewis, Miracles, second edition, (Fount, 1998)
J.P. Moreland, Scaling the Secular City, (Baker, 1987)
Amy Orr-Ewing, Why Trust The Bible? Answers to 10 tough questions, (IVP, 2005)
Randall Price, The Stones Cry Out: What Archaeology Reveals About the Truth of the Bible, (Harvest House, 1997)
Jeffery L. Sheler, Is The Bible True?, (Harper Collins, 2000)
Richard Swinburne, The Resurrection of God Incarnate, (Clarendon Press, 2003)
Peter Walker, The Weekend that Changed the World: The Mystery of Jerusalem’s Empty Tomb, (Marshall Pickering, 1999)
John Wenham, Easter Enigma: Are the resurrection accounts in conflict?, second edition, (Paternoster, 1992)
Michael J. Wilkins and J.P. Moreland (ed.’s), Jesus Under Fire – Modern Scholarship Reinvents the Historical Jesus, (Paternoster Press, 1996)
N.T. Wright, Who Was Jesus?, (SPCK, 1992)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Now hear this...

Some notices for your interest, mainly about radio interviews.

First of all, you might like to listen to Dr. Thomas Woodwood, Professor of rhetoric and author of the excellent 'Doubts About Darwin' and its recent sequal 'Darwin Strikes Back', discussing ID with Peter Hearty of the National Secular Society on the listen again service for Premier Christian Radio's Unbelievable show, hosted by Justin Brierly.

Yours truly makes a guest appearance at the other end of a phone line in the second half of the show - quite a difficult task to debate with no visual input, but I think I caught Pete Hearty in a real doozie: I gave the analogy of an archaeologist digging up a statue and infering design from what they see to show, contra Hearty, that infering design is a common scientific practice. Hearty responded that in the case of an archaeolgist infering a designer archaeologists know that the things they dig up are made by humans. I replied that this is not the case, but rather that archaeolgists assume that what they dig up might be due to design (not that it is) and that they have to infer design by looking at what they dig up and reasoning from there. Pete shocked me somewhat by boldly replying that archaeolgists do not do this! But of course they do - they don't assume that what they dig up is designed (it might not be), only that it may be and that they can tell a designed arrow head from a non-designed bit of rock by looking at the object and infering design from it. Besides, what if our archaeolgist is the first man on Mars and digs up a statue there? Obviously it can't have been man-made (baring time travel), but the object would be no less obviously the product of design - even if we had no idea who or what the designer was - it might have been a martian, or it might have been a god. Who knows? But it is obviously designed and saying so would not require us to step outside the science of archaeology!

Second, I spent today in London recording interviews for Premier Christian radio with Justin Brierly on Richard Dawkins' latest book: The God Delusion. I think the main review interview is going out live tomorrow morning on the breakfast show - hopefully you can track it down on-line through their listen again service. We also recorded a few short 'nuggets' looking at individual issues form the book, to be peppered through next week's broadcasts.

Finally, Dr Angus J. Menuge, author of the very insightful ID/Philosophy of Mind book 'Agents Under Fire: Materialism and the rationality of science' has asked me to advertise: 'the 11th academy of apologetics, evangelism and human rights to be held in Strasbourg France, July 10-212, 2007. It is run by John Warwick Montgomery and Craig Parton, and I [Menuge] will be one of the speakers this year. Full conference info is at: '

There you go!

Friday, November 03, 2006


Damaris publish review of 'The God Delusion'

Damaris culturewatch have just published the shortest of three reviews I have written on Richard Dawkins' latest book The God Delusion.

This review is entitled 'Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?'

This is basically a shortened version of another review which more fully covers Dawkins' weak handling of natural theology, which is in turn a shortened down version of my more wide-ranging full review!

I'll post a note when these other reviews are posted on my featureds author page @

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