Robert M. Price’s Podcast “The Human Bible”

Robert M. Price is an amusing, charismatic, and atheistic scholar of the Bible. Since February he has been doing a radio show/podcast for the Center For Inquiry called “The Human Bible”, wherein he explains all the ins and outs of the Bible from a scholarly and skeptical perspective. Below the fold are brief episode summaries and links to help you find what episodes most interest you or answer questions you have wanted answered:

Episode 1:  Join host Robert Price as he answers listeners’ questions and delves into amusing, peculiar, and puzzling issues in regular segments like “Prophetic Scorecard” and “Is That in the Bible?!”

We’ll cover everything from the Q Source (including explaining what the heck that means) to that one time God wanted to kill Moses for having a foreskin.

Episode 2: In this episode, we answer listener questions about unicorns and dragons, learn about the Old Testament’s sources, premiere a new segment called “Apologetics Is Never Having to Say You’re Sorry,” and ask whether or not the Bible thinks human sacrifice is A-ok!

Episode 3: Today, we get up to speed on the many names of God—can’t he just pick one already? We answer questions on plagues and virgin births, wonder where C.S. Lewis came up with some of that stuff, and read into the verse that claims Paul took over for Jesus when he wasn’t quite suffering enough—wait, what? Don’t miss it!

Episode 4:Today on The Human Bible, we first talk about the pivotal Biblical character Marcion of Pontus and what he had to do with the formation of the New Testament. We read from and discuss one of the Bible’s best erotic poems, the Song of Solomon. (Yes, you read that correctly.) In this week’s Prophetic Scorecard, we wonder how Jesus managed to mess up that whole the world ending in his generation thing and what we can learn from it. And, we answer a listener question about the concept of grace and what the Bible really has to say about it.

Episode 5: This week on The Human Bible we get up to speed on how the Bible wound up split into chapters and verses. Spoiler: it definitely wasn’t written that way.

A caller from Minnesota asks about the nature of Hell—does the Bible say it’s a fiery, demon-supervised pit of eternal torment, or something closer to just a big pile of garbage? We respond to apologists who suggest that the claims the Bible makes about Jesus must be true because if they weren’t, someone totally would have called them on it. We answer a listener question about the word “elohim” as it appears in the Bible—space alien, God speaking of himself in the plural, or something else? To close out the episode we have a look at reincarnation and ask, “Is That in the Bible?!”

Episode 6: In today’s episode, we learn about Biblical Form Criticism—what does scripture have in common with knock-knock jokes and superheroes anyway? We answer a question from the Human Bible Hotline about the Epic of Gilgamesh and whether or not the Bible took some serious notes from it.

We also take a look at yet another failed prophecy in Ezekiel, wonder if Yahweh was a volcano god, and read some verses in the Bible that many people would probably like to pretend aren’t there.

Episode 7: This week on The Human Bible we learn some more about Form Criticism and how the Bible tends to repeat itself over, and over, and over. We take an in-depth and critical look at what the Bible actually has to say about homosexuality—and it might surprise you. In this week’s “Apologetics is Never Having to Say You’re Sorry” we examine yet another argument by C.S Lewis. This time it involves stacks of books, cucumbers, and one big false analogy. Finally, we look into what the Bible says about the afterlife—a lot of very different (and conflicting) things, it turns out.

Episode 8: This week we look into some of the harsh lessons the Bible teaches, most involving some kind of horrible death. We introduce a new segment called “Audience Inquisition in which we ask you, dear listener, for some answers. This week we ask if you’ve ever heard someone ‘quote’ something from the Bible that isn’t actually in the Bible.

We also wonder where the heck the original writings that make up the Bible actually are. My first guess: the same mysterious place that entire bag of M&M’s I dropped down the couch went. And, we inquire about the most distant places from Jerusalem that the Bible mentions.

And, most important of all, we break some news about the Bible and masturbation. It’s good news, people. I mean, uh, it’s probably good news for this one friend of mine.

Episode 9: This week on The Human Bible we do some more Biblical form criticism; this time taking a look at look at parables in the Bible. We follow up on last week’s ‘Audience Inquisition’ question: “Have you ever heard someone ‘quote’ something from the Bible that isn’t in the Bible? If so, what was it?” We got some great answers—one of which comes from Pulp Fiction.

We answer a couple great listener questions coming from both ex-Mormons and an ex-Jehovah’s Witness on the Sacrament and on the Bible’s thoughts on earthly, rather than heavenly, rewards.

And finally, on this week’s ‘Is That in the Bible?!’, we look at what the Bible actually says happened between Jesus and the two others was crucified with. Criminials, sure, but were they really such jerks to Jesus?

Episode 10: This week in “Up to Speed” we delve into the Psalms and learn how to actually understand what they’re talking about, and where the authors were coming from. We wonder why God changes his mind so much, considering he’s unchanging and all that. We answer a few listener questions: one about Noah’s fascinating great-granddad Enoch, and one about the 10 Commandments-where did they come from? And 10? Why 10? The answer is much more trivial (and amusing) than you’d think. And, because we have trouble going a week without doing so, we describe another monster found in the Bible-this time it’s an armor plated dragon that breathes fire. Yes, really.

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About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.


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