Argument Against the Resurrection of Jesus – Part 14

The Fourth Gospel plays an important role in determining the probability of the claim that Jesus died on the cross.Two of the key injuries allegedly inflicted upon Jesus are documented only in the Fourth Gospel:1. Jesus' hands and feet were nailed to the cross.2. Jesus was stabbed in the chest with a spear while on the cross.None of the Gospels state that Jesus was nailed to the cross when they describe the crucifixion. They just say that Jesus was crucified. Crucifixion does not necessarily … [Read more...]

The Parsons Test of Biblical Literalism

A number of posts and commentaries recently have argued that even conservative Christian apologists have now largely abandoned the old-fashioned literalist view of scripture. I am still not sure. I don’t know how deep or broad their skepticism is. Hence I offer the following Parsons Test of Biblical Literalism. It is, of course, a completely unscientific test that I made up just for fun. Still, I would be very surprised at many scores of much less than 40 from our evangelical interlocutors. … [Read more...]

Does Hume Commit a Fallacy?

One respondent to my previous post, “The Gospels and Critical History,” in addition to the usual bluster and bombast, manages to offer a few interesting arguments. He had this to say about Hume’s miracle argument from section 1o of An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding:"As for Hume's beautiful argument; it is demonstrably fallacious. Hume had an excuse because probability calculus hadn't been fully developed in his day, but we now know that what Hume forgot to factor was the probability that … [Read more...]

Question about the Templeton Foundation’s $3M Grant to Biola University

The blog Why Evolution is True commented on the Templeton Foundation's decision to award a $3,030,000 grant to Biola University to setup a "Biola University Center for Christian Thought."Stereotypes about Christian institutions of higher learning aside, I received my undergraduate degree from a Christian university. I met a lot of bright students and professors there who certainly seemed to think deeply about the "big questions." If asked, I would have described it, like many other … [Read more...]

The Gospels and Critical History

I follow with interest some of the debates posted on SO concerning the historical reliability of the Gospel narratives. Christian apologists often accuse skeptics of approaching those narratives with an unwarranted degree of skepticism that assumes the falsehood of those narratives until and unless they meet unreasonable standards of proof not imposed on other ancient testimonies. For instance, they say that skeptics raise no quibbles about the general historicity of the accounts of … [Read more...]

Horia George Plugaru’s Argument Against the Abundance Theory of Creation

The Internet Infidels just published a new essay by Horia George Plugaru in the Secular Web's Kiosk, "Why the Abundance Theory of Creation Fails." From the opening paragraph:How can God be both a perfect being and the creator of the universe? Doesn't the fact that he created the world imply that he had a need or want? Otherwise, why would he bother creating anything at all? But then, if he had a need that implied the existence of the universe in order to be fulfilled, it seems he is not perfect: … [Read more...]

Argument Against the Resurrection of Jesus – Part 13

I am examining the implications of the following supposition:JAW = Jesus was alive and walking around on the first Easter Sunday.This supposition is asserted by most Christian apologists as a key claim in support of the resurrection of Jesus. Another key claim made by Christian apologists concerns the alleged crucifixion of Jesus:JWC = Jesus was crucified on Friday of Passover week, just before the first Easter Sunday.All four Gospels agree that Jesus of Nazareth was crucified in Jerusalem on … [Read more...]

Tyler Wunder Has Joined The Secular Outpost!

I'm pleased to announce that Dr. Tyler Wunder has joined The Secular Outpost! Here is a short bio he provided to me for this announcement:I received my PhD in Philosophy from Boston University; my dissertation was a critique of Alvin Plantinga’s Warrant trilogy. My publications are: “Anti-Naturalism and Proper Function” [Religious Studies 44(2)], “Critical Study of James K. Beilby’s Epistemology as Theology: An Evaluation of Alvin Plantinga’s Religious Epistemology” [Philo 10(2)], and “Critical S … [Read more...]


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