Matthew Ferguson: History, Probability, and Miracles (2013)

Historian Matthew Ferguson uses Bayes' Theorem to analyze the historicity of miracle claims. Among other things, Ferguson compares the historical evidence for a purported miracle by Vespasian to the historical evidence for the purported resurrection of Jesus.LINKNote: as always, links do not constitute endorsement. … [Read more...]

Matthew Ferguson: Ten Reasons to Reject the Apologetic 10/42 Source Slogan (2012)

The "10/42 source slogan" refers to the claim that "42 ancient sources record Jesus 150 years within his lifetime, whereas only 10 mention the contemporary Roman emperor Tiberius." Matthew Ferguson, a Ph.D. student at the University of California at Irvine, has written a detailed critique of the 10/42 source slogan.Here is an excerpt from the article's conclusion: Upon investigation of the “10/42” statistic, it is clear that Habermas and Licona exaggerated the number of authors who alle … [Read more...]

Matthew Ferguson: Knocking Out the Pillars of the “Minimal Facts” Apologetic (2013)

I have only skimmed this article, but it appears to be a very comprehensive rebuttal to the "minimal facts" apologetics favored by several Christian apologists, including Licona, Habermas, and Craig.LINKNote: as always, links do not necessarily constitute endorsement.We'd love to know what you think of the article. Please feel free to debate in the combox below. … [Read more...]

Ferguson

Although this has nothing to do with the philosophy of religion, I'd like to make an exception and dedicate a post to what happened in Ferguson, Missouri. I have zero expertise or authority on any of the several issues involved here. My main goal is to provider readers a chance to discuss in the combox here if they are so inclined.In order to get the conversation going, I'll offer a few points / observations / links.I'm white; I live nowhere near Ferguson, Missouri; and I have no idea … [Read more...]

Is Intentionality a Cardinal Problem for Physicalism?

This response is based on the summary by Joel Steinmetz of an article by John Haldane:http://guweb2.gonzaga.edu/faculty/calhoun/socratic/Steinmetz-Problem_of_Intentionality.pdfIt is not based on the not the original article by Haldane, so my remarks here must be regarded as provisional and informal. Still, I would like to address a few points.Haldane’s argument, as presented here, is somewhat confusing because of the terminology employed. The key terms are “extension,” “intension (wit … [Read more...]

Adam Lee: The Argument from Locality

Fellow Patheos atheist blogger Adam Lee introduces a novel argument: "The fact that all religions originated in one specific culture, at one specific time and place, points strongly to their being the product of that culture, time and place – and not the product of divine revelation."LINKDisclaimer: As always, links do not necessarily constitute endorsement. Feel free to debate in the combox. … [Read more...]

Joel Steinmetz: The Problem of Intentionality: A Cardinal Difficulty for Physicalism (2005)

A very interesting summary of a lecture delivered to Gonzaga University's Socratic Club on December 9, 2005.LINKDisclaimer: As always, links do not necessarily constitute endorsement. See also:Craig's Argument from Intentionality … [Read more...]

The Evidential Argument from Biological Evolution, Part 2: Is Evolution Evidence for Theism?

Let's begin reviewing the logical form of the argument, as described in Part 1 of this series. (1) Evolution is antecedently much more probable on the assumption that naturalism is true than on the assumption that theism is true. (2) The statement that pain and pleasure systematically connected to reproductive success is antecedently much more probable on the assumption that evolutionary naturalism is true than on the assumption that evolutionary theism is true. (3) Therefore, evolution … [Read more...]


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