Exploring Our Matrix
The Blog of Dr. James F. McGrath, Clarence L. Goodwin Chair in New Testament Language and Literature at Butler University, Indianapolis
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There is a discussion of a post of mine from a couple of months ago, “Why I am a Christian“, taking place on the Debunking Christianity blog. Come on over and join the fun!
Your little story about Aesop’s fables amused me greatly. Despite my recent decision that I am irreligious, I think your position is a very good one to take–and one that I think I would be in myself if I hadn’t decided that calling myself Christian was potentially intellecually dishonest.
You’re a better man than me, James. I briefly tried doing a little apology for the faith at Debunking Christianity, but I lacked your patience. Even when someone called your mental health into question (because he couldn’t prove your reasoning false), you remained civil.That blog just pisses me off. It’s so obviously an attack on a straw man: (1) insisting that the only true Christian is a fundamentalist, (2) demonstrating that the fundamentalists are wrong, and (3) concluding that Christianity is wrong.They are unwilling to have their understanding of Christianity broadened, so you can’t succeed in the attempt. Although I did note Richard’s constructive input.
I wandered over there, tried to compose a comment, and then gave up. It’s a valid argument to say “I’m not talking about progressive Christians because they’re just too trivial a group”; it’s quite another issue to have to deal with people saying “you aren’t a Christian” if you don’t buy into the orthodox definitions of Christianity.Most atheists (quite rightly) take issue with the argument that you can’t have morality without religion. But if you don’t want to let the fundamentalists define morality, why try to impose their definitions of Christianity on others? It’s annoyingly bad logic (and the reason I ultimately did not post a comment on that thread).
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