God is a Mystery, not an Explanation (From the Archives)

The world we live in is full of mysteries. When we envisage the self-replicating molecules that drive life on this planet, we wonder how they could have arisen, and we seek explanations. Likewise with the very fact than anything exists at all, we wonder why there is something rather than nothing. To say “God did [Read More...]

Congratulations to Joel Watts!

One reliable sign that a blogger is taking a stand for truth and open to following the evidence where it leads is when a negative post about them appears at Answers in Genesis. Joel Watts has now had this honor. Keep up the good work! Joel and Rod already have responses and comments posted. I [Read More...]

Sola Scriptura? (From the Archives)

Although I am a Protestant, I must confess that the idea of ‘sola Scriptura’, of ‘Scripture alone’, doesn’t work. It could perhaps theoretically work in Islam, where one can (assuming one doesn’t take a critical approach to the text) assume the unity of the book as a given. In the case of the Bible, such [Read More...]

God Beyond the Bible

Two humorous images related to this theme. First, here’s a cartoon from David Hayward: And via Jesus Needs New PR, a sign from a church that believes that God is still speaking: [Read more...]

Literalism, Critical Thinking and Science around the Blogosphere

Let’s start this collection of links with Adam Kotsko’s post on literalism. Here’s a sample: I sometimes had to fight an uphill battle with secular liberal students who basically took fundamentalists at their word that they were following the Bible “literally” and who felt that such “literalism” was somehow the most authentic form of religion. [Read More...]

What’s Wrong With Penal Substitution? (From the Archives)

For many people, the title of this post may be meaningless. “What is penal substitution?” would seem to them a better question. But if I explain that it is the idea that there is a penalty for sin, and God punished Jesus instead of us, they will immediately recognize it and say “That’s what I believe!” [Read More...]

Biblical Literalism and Science are an Explosive Mix

The following cartoon was shared today by Unreasonable Faith and then by Scotteriology (with a twist): Far worse than combining Biblical literalism with science is combining religious faith with scientific ignorance, as in the example below from Facebook which came via P. Z. Myers: For an impressive example of the sun’s power on display today, [Read More...]

Inerrancy of the Bible and Sarah Palin

The two possible meanings of the title of this post are intentional. It seems to me that the same tactics that Christians who believe in the Bible’s inerrancy use to deal with evidence to the contrary are the tactics being used to defend the inerrancy of Sarah Palin (and other politicians – Palin just provides [Read More...]

Palin Revere Rides Again: Is Christianity About Learning the Truth or Making What You Already Believe “The Truth”?

In the hullabaloo about Sarah Palin’s lack of familiarity with Paul Revere, some of the attention seems to me to focus on what is a less important point. Everyone flubs historical details at some point, even major ones. The bigger issue is one that I highlighted in another post recently, and which Scott Bailey also [Read More...]

Abortion and Child Sacrifice in the Bible (From The Archives)

There is an interesting irony in the fact that a tradition that apparently once practiced child sacrifice has evolved into one in which (in certain segments, at least) is adamant in protecting the rights even of the not-yet-born. The teachings on the unborn found within the Bible are somewhat ambiguous. Exodus 21:22-25 appears to make [Read More...]

It’s Hard to be “Biblical”

Many might think of being “Biblical” as challenging because it would be strenuous and demanding to follow every single detail literally, as A. J. Jacobs did in The Year of Living Biblically: One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible. In fact, there are a large number of different ways of [Read More...]


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