Really Recommended Posts

Really Recommended Posts 8/21/15- Science Fiction, Debate the New Testament, and more!

postAnother week, another round of fresh reads for you, dear readers, to enjoy! This week we have posts on a science fiction author you may not have heard of, a debate between an atheist and a New Testament scholar, theology and miscarriages, a pro-life post with some good arguments and advice for advocates, and creationism.

Cordwainer Smith– Cordwainer Smith was a science fiction author who was also an Anglican. He developed a unique and compelling world full of intriguing insights into humanity, religion, and free will. Here’s a post that develops some of his thought and reflects a bit on his body of work.

How Not to Argue Pro-Choice: Eleven Completely Misguided Arguments– Clinton Wilcox has written a valuable piece here responding to a pro-choice article that alleges to discredit 11 common pro-life arguments. Not only does he respond to each of the 11 attacks on pro-life arguments, but he also clarifies some arguments that we probably shouldn’t be using.

Fact-Checking Dan Barker from Our Recent Debate [with Daniel B. Wallace]– Here’s a meaty read that will help you dive into some of the extra-biblical evidence related to Jesus Christ, among other things.

Miss Carry: The Theology of Unrealized Motherhood– Miscarriages happen to anywhere from 10%-50% of all pregnancies. Yet we don’t often talk about the emotional impact these can have on families. Here’s a post reflecting on the need for a theology of unrealized motherhood.

Billions of Stone Artifacts: Witness to the Ancient Occupation of the Saharan Desert– Joel Duff continues his series responding to an Answers in Genesis argument about the sheer volume of stone artifacts in Africa. The basics are that the fact that billions of artifacts exist means that human occupation must have been much longer than a young earth creationist timeline allows for.

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About J.W. Wartick

J.W. Wartick has an MA in Christian Apologetics from Biola University. His interests include theology, philosophy of religion--particularly the existence of God--astronomy, biology, archaeology, and sci-fi and fantasy novels.

Discussion

2 thoughts on “Really Recommended Posts 8/21/15- Science Fiction, Debate the New Testament, and more!

  1. Claiming Dan Barker got his ‘facts’ about Josephus “wrong” does not make it so. Although the linked author Daniel Wallace presents a case using cherry picked biblical scholarship (entirely from the recent apologetic wing as far as I can tell), he misrepresents almost all earlier biblical scholarship that had near consensus identifying the Josephus paragraph a forgery by ignoring it. That’s not a scholarly example of way to check one’s ‘facts’ and draw appropriate conclusions that reflect the total state of biblical scholarship.

    Why does this matter?

    Well, it has to do with methodology and indicates how much or little confidence we should place in Wallace’s approach.

    What Wallace has done in this case is take sides based on his apologetic religious belief by ignoring the bulk of scholarship – nearly unanimous prior to the rise of apologetics in the middle of the last century – that doesn’t support his opinion and then claims it’s Barker who has his ‘facts’ wrong because he isn’t using enough scholarship.

    This is the pot calling the kettle black.

    It is, in fact, Wallace who clearly isn’t using or even giving a nod to the bulk of biblical scholarship or he would admit what is the case, namely, that only modern apologetic scholarship holds the Josephus tract to be of any accurate historical value in spite of failing to address the reasons why almost all other earlier biblical scholarship considered it an obvious later inclusion.

    This indicates to me that Wallace is not using sound scholarship or representing it fairly; what he is doing is rife throughout the apologetic wave, namely, using cherry-picked scholarship to buttress only a very specific view while claiming that detractors simply aren’t as scholarly.

    Does this approach sound familiar? It should. It’s even got a name, the tu quoque fallacy.

    But is it effective? Judge for yourself…

    This approach is the same tactic very popular among the denialist crowd, too, starting with how the tobacco industry defended itself by using the same method to pervert science to its cause, the fossil fuel industry defending itself by using this same method to pervert climate studies to its cause, by the anti-fluoride and anti-vaccine movements defending themselves by using the same method to pervert medicine to its cause. This is how the the aim of the Wedge Document is being implemented into education curriculum, and now how apologetics defends itself by perverting biblical scholarship to its cause.

    Posted by tildeb | August 21, 2015, 9:10 AM

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  1. Pingback: This Week’s Links « Timothy Siburg - August 27, 2015

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