Poll

What do you think about Lee Strobel?

Non-Christians: "He does a poor job of promoting Christianity; I'm embarased for Christians that quote him."
1 (2.9%)
Christians: "I've read his books and my faith was bolstered by what he wrote."
1 (2.9%)
Christians: "I generally agree with Mr. Strobel."
0 (0%)
Christians: "He doesn't speak for me, and I don't care for his books."
0 (0%)
Christians: "Lee who?"
1 (2.9%)
Non-Christians: "I generally agree with him, and he has left me questioning my lack of Christinan faith."
0 (0%)
Non-Christians: "Mr. Strobel is a good public face for Christians."
0 (0%)
Non-Christians: "I generally disagree with him, though he has some good points."
2 (5.7%)
Non-Christians: "He does a poor job of promoting Christianity; I'm embarased for Christians that quote him."
11 (31.4%)
Non-Christians: "Lee who?"
7 (20%)
I had an apple filled strobel last week.
9 (25.7%)
Other: ______________ (please post details!)
3 (8.6%)

Total Members Voted: 27

Author Topic: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1, 2 & 3  (Read 1431 times)

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Offline Hermes

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Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1, 2 & 3
« on: January 03, 2009, 05:30:51 AM »
For part 2, click here.

Source: http://friendlyatheist.com/2009/01/02/lee-strobel-answers-your-questions-part-1/

The text below is minimally formatted, and does not include most of the links and other extras from the original. 

Quote
Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1

A long while back, you posed questions to Christian apologist and author Lee Strobel.

Strobel is the atheist-turned-Christian author of such books as The Case for Christ, The Case for Faith, and The Case for Easter.

It’s been a long time coming, but he is responding to the questions I sent him (your questions from the posting) — in depth — one-by-one.

So this is Part 1 in what I hope will be a recurring series. Others will soon follow. Hopefully, the dialogue initiated by Strobel’s responses will lead to an interesting discussion between atheists and Christians, including one of the most famous and prolific Christian apologists. While the question below offers more background on Strobel, future questions are more specific about claims he makes in his books.

I should point out that any hyperlinks in his response were added by me (unless otherwise noted) to provide references when needed.

Here’s Lee:

Quote
    First of all, thanks to Hemant for initiating this process and to everyone who submitted a question. I really appreciate your patience. I had several projects I needed to complete before I could begin offering responses. Almost all of the questions seemed to be sincere and honest inquiries, and so I’m glad to provide my perspective and then allow you the opportunity to respond and comment. With that basis of mutual respect, I believe we can interact in a meaningful way.

    Hemant asked me to try to answer the questions in the order they were given to me. So here’s the first one:

    What is your own background with atheism? What caused you to become a Christian? Is there a difference between your former atheism and the “New Atheism” of today? In other words, how hard-core of an atheist were you?

    My commitment to atheism essentially came in three steps. The first was when I was in junior high school and began asking Christians uncomfortable questions, like, “How can there be a loving God with so much suffering in the world?” And, “How can a loving God send people to hell?” And, “How can Jesus be the only way to God?” Rather than engage with me, they basically told me to keep my questions to myself. I quickly concluded that the reason they didn’t want to discuss these matters was because there were no good answers from the Christian perspective.

    The second step came when I began studying neo-Darwinism in high school. I was particularly struck by Stanley Miller’s 1959 experiment in which he recreated what he thought was the original atmosphere of the primitive Earth, shot electricity through it to simulate lightning, and discovered the creation of some amino acids, the building blocks of life. I naively concluded that Miller had proven that life could have emerged in a purely naturalistic way. To me, that meant God was out of a job!

    I started considering myself an atheist in high school, but the third step that cemented my position came when I took a college course on the historical Jesus. The professor, who relied in 19th century German paradigm, convinced me that there was essentially nothing in the New Testament that could be trusted.

    Along the way, I read a lot of atheistic literature, which served to deepen my commitment to spiritual skepticism and give me a more systematic basis for my atheistic convictions. I was especially captivated by Bertrand Russell’s book Why I am Not a Christian and Antony Flew’s The Presumption of Atheism. And I was quite sympathetic to many of the church/state issues raised by atheists.

    However, in the interest of total disclosure, let me add that my problems with faith were not solely intellectual. I had a vested interest in the non-existence of God because I was living a rather immoral lifestyle and did not want to be held accountable for my behavior. To me, atheism opened up a world of hedonism that I knew wouldn’t be acceptable to God if he existed.

    (Let me be clear: I’m not saying that all atheists are hedonists. I’m just saying that, for me, atheism cleared the way for me to live a self-indulgent, me-first, narcissistic life. And to be honest, to this day I can’t figure out why atheists would choose any other path, although I know many do.)

    Was I “hard-core”? I’m not sure how to define that. I was recently contacted by a woman who had been an acquaintance of mine in high school. She said she was “the good Catholic girl” and reminded me how I used to taunt and belittle her because of her faith. So I guess I was more aggressive at a young age than I remember!

    At the same time, though, I didn’t have the kind of scorched-earth militancy I see in some of the “New Atheists” you referenced. While a lot of the issues they raise are the same ones that vexed me, I was not on a mission to wipe all faith from the face of the planet. I was happy to peacefully coexist with Christians and people from other belief systems.

    How did I become a Christian? My wife’s conversion to Christianity (which deeply troubled me at first) resulted in a lot of positive changes in her attitudes and behavior, which I found winsome and intriguing. She invited me to a church, where I heard the Gospel explained in a way I could understand it. While I didn’t believe it, I realized that if it were true, it would have big implications for my life. So I decided to use my journalism experience and legal expertise (at the time, I was legal editor of The Chicago Tribune) to investigate whether there was any credibility to Christianity or any other faith system.

    For nearly two years, I investigated science, philosophy, and history. I read literature (both pro and con), quizzed experts, and studied archaeology. On November 8th, 1981, alone in my room, I took a yellow legal pad and began summarizing the evidence I had encountered. In light of the scientific evidence that points toward a Creator and the historical evidence for the resurrection of Jesus, I came to the conclusion that it would have required more faith for me to maintain my atheism than to become a Christian.

    Essentially, I realized that to stay an atheist, I would have to believe that nothing produces everything; non-life produces life; randomness produces fine-tuning; chaos produces information; unconsciousness produces consciousness; and non-reason produces reason. Those leaps of faith were simply too big for me to take, especially in light of the affirmative case for God’s existence and Jesus’ resurrection (and, hence, his divinity). In other words, in my assessment the Christian worldview accounted for the totality of the evidence much better than the atheistic worldview.

    Years later, I wrote three books that retraced and expanded upon my original journey. The Case for Faith examines the eight big objections to Christianity that bothered me all the way back to my junior high years. The Case for a Creator looks at the affirmative evidence for the existence of God from cosmology, physics, and other fields of science. And The Case for Christ recaps the historical evidence for Jesus, including his resurrection, through which he validated his claim of divinity. Those books, nearly a thousand pages in length, summarize the basis for my conclusions.

    Having said all of this, I do believe strongly that despite our fundamental disagreements, it should be possible for atheists and theists to engage in constructive discussions instead of resorting to name-calling or the imputation of bad motives. While I now believe atheists are wrong in their conclusions, I’m confident that they still matter to God and therefore deserve respect. As a former spiritual skeptic myself, I can appreciate their viewpoint and I try to give due weight to their objections and arguments. Thanks for your willingness to engage in the same way.


Edit: Changed quote block to reflect original more.
Edit: Added link to part 2.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2009, 10:52:10 PM by Hermes »
Smart people believe weird things because they are skilled at defending beliefs they arrived at for non-smart reasons. --Michael Shermer

The history of religion is a long attempt to reconcile old custom with new reason, to find a sound theory for an absurd practice.  --Sir James George Frazer

Offline none

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2009, 05:53:25 AM »
Quote from: Lee Strobel
[...]
    However, in the interest of total disclosure, let me add that my problems with faith were not solely intellectual.
he threw logic out when contemplating the logic of faith in god.

Quote from: Lee Strobel
[...]
    To me, atheism opened up a world of hedonism that I knew wouldn’t be acceptable to God if he existed.
[...]
    For nearly two years, I investigated science, philosophy, and history.
[...]
    On November 8th, 1981, alone in my room, I took a yellow legal pad and began summarizing the evidence I had encountered. In light of the scientific evidence that points toward a Creator and the historical evidence for the resurrection of Jesus, I came to the conclusion that it would have required more faith for me to maintain my atheism than to become a Christian.
[...]
cognitive dissonance, rationalization, and conformation bias.

accurate?

Offline Deus ex Machina

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2009, 07:21:43 AM »
Quote from: Lee Strobel
Essentially, I realized that to stay an atheist, I would have to believe that nothing produces everything; non-life produces life; randomness produces fine-tuning; chaos produces information; unconsciousness produces consciousness; and non-reason produces reason.

I have several issues with this statement:

1. Nothing produces everything

Theists believe the same thing. After all, according to theists, nothing produced Ultimate Reality; it simply is. The only difference here is that to an atheist, Ultimate Reality is simply "reality" - for all we know, it simply is.

2. Non-life produces life

I don't see why this is particularly troubling. Life at its most basic is simply a complex set of biochemical processes.

3. Randomness produces fine-tuning

I don't see why anyone would have to believe that. Personally, I don't believe in 'randomness' at all. Mathematical chaos isn't randomness. And fine-tuning is a subjective concept: any intelligent agents in a local domain of reality would look at the world around them and conclude that it was fine-tuned for them. That's pretty much what the Anthropic Principle is about. I'd ask Lee what form of observable universe he would expect to see if it wasn't "fine-tuned" for humanity, but humanity existed in it anyway. To my mind, the entire concept of "fine-tuning", this abuse of the Anthropic Principle in order to make some kind of statement about Ultimate Reality, is question-begging nonsense, and misses the point.

4. Chaos produces information

"Information" is also a subjective concept. In order to declare that something contains "information", we have to assign meaning to it - and assignment of meaning requires an agent capable of assigning meaning. IOW, intelligent agents in reality. So far as we know, we're the only such agents who do that.

After all, what is "information"? Data with meaning. What is data? To us, pretty much everything: we take inputs via our senses from the world around us, and our brains attempt to make sense of it. That's where the meaning comes in. We assign meaning to patterns - we are pattern-matching agents - and give labels to generalities of those patterns, such as "cat", "chair", "window".

So what is "information", but patterns in chaos? Any student of mathematics knows that there are patterns in chaotic equations, so I fail to see what is so hard to believe about the notion that chaos produces patterns we interpret as "information". On the contrary, it's practically a given that there would be such patterns, so long as we've a reason to interpret such patterns thus.

5. Unconsciousness produces consciousness

This is the one point where I would be tempted to give Lee an "out". Consciousness is an extremely puzzling mystery. However, we'd need to define what we meant by "consciousness" here: it may well be that consciousness - self-awareness - is simply an emergent property of a sufficiently complex brain. The bottom line is that we don't know. I am not, however, convinced that our ignorance is sufficient reason to leap to the conclusion that there's some Ultimate Reality "out there" bestowing consciousness upon intelligent agents.

6. Non-reason produces reason

The statement does not even compute. Intelligent agents with brains produced reason, as a tool for describing reality. It doesn't have any independent reality of its own. It is a concept - like the many other concepts we use to guide us to an understanding of the world around us.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2009, 07:26:50 AM by Deus ex Machina »
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Offline Ambassador Pony

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2009, 01:06:23 PM »
What an arrogant man to not accept the "I don't know" alternative.

I also would like to know about his upbringing. Dollars to donuts it was christian-type.

Adult primates usually revert to behaviour learned in childhood. With adequate knowledge of his upbringing, I could predict the shift in adolescence and teh shift back in early adulthood. All his "research" is rationalization, IMO.
You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2009, 01:31:34 PM »
What an arrogant man to not accept the "I don't know" alternative.

I also would like to know about his upbringing. Dollars to donuts it was christian-type.

Adult primates usually revert to behaviour learned in childhood. With adequate knowledge of his upbringing, I could predict the shift in adolescence and teh shift back in early adulthood. All his "research" is rationalization, IMO.

Does this mean I'm at risk for converting back to Christianity because of my SB environment as a child?  Is there a scale or risk factors for reconvegence or stages of life?  As in most likely to de-convert as a teen and re-convert as a young adult but safe once past a certain age?  Or is it tied more to when the deconversion happened, i.e. late life de-conversion means a risk fact for re-conversion up to x number of years?
Can omniscient God, who
Knows the future, find
The omnipotence to
Change His future mind?
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Offline Ambassador Pony

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2009, 05:58:09 PM »
What an arrogant man to not accept the "I don't know" alternative.

I also would like to know about his upbringing. Dollars to donuts it was christian-type.

Adult primates usually revert to behaviour learned in childhood. With adequate knowledge of his upbringing, I could predict the shift in adolescence and teh shift back in early adulthood. All his "research" is rationalization, IMO.

Does this mean I'm at risk for converting back to Christianity because of my SB environment as a child?  Is there a scale or risk factors for reconvegence or stages of life?  As in most likely to de-convert as a teen and re-convert as a young adult but safe once past a certain age?  Or is it tied more to when the deconversion happened, i.e. late life de-conversion means a risk fact for re-conversion up to x number of years?

Everyone's different LTBA. It's a general pattern and all sorts of unpredictable environmental factors are involved.

Read christian testimonies, and you see it quite often. How old are you?
You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline StPatrick

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2009, 06:05:29 PM »
Anyone who thinks Strobel is a credible source would do well to check out this site.
If we come together and do not fight over religion, class and borders then we hold the key to a peaceful world. There are two possible futures in store; either a March of power and greed or a March of a unified human race.

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2009, 06:43:24 PM »
What an arrogant man to not accept the "I don't know" alternative.

I also would like to know about his upbringing. Dollars to donuts it was christian-type.

Adult primates usually revert to behaviour learned in childhood. With adequate knowledge of his upbringing, I could predict the shift in adolescence and teh shift back in early adulthood. All his "research" is rationalization, IMO.

Does this mean I'm at risk for converting back to Christianity because of my SB environment as a child?  Is there a scale or risk factors for re-conversions or stages of life?  As in most likely to de-convert as a teen and reconvert as a young adult but safe once past a certain age?  Or is it tied more to when the deconversion happened, i.e. late life de-conversion means a risk fact for reconversion up to x number of years?

Everyone's different LTBA. It's a general pattern and all sorts of unpredictable environmental factors are involved.

Read christian testimonies, and you see it quite often. How old are you?

*sigh* getting older and older.

I am 44, and racing at a fast hobble toward 45.   ;)  So I'm hoping that based on the assumption that most people tend to become more rigid in their beliefs/mind set as they age, I won't fall back into the insanity.   ;D  However, I am "young" at atheism.  While I had doubts and felt uncomfortable with Christianity for many years, and have rejected it intellectually for the past few years, as others in this forum have mentioned, it was a slow process stepping away.  The brainwashing has a strong hold, and it has only been within the past year or so that I have acknowledged to myself that I don't see credence in any of it.  Part of the struggle has been a complete lack of community or network around here.  Or perhaps it's not in the open and I just haven't found it yet.

Given the years I spent immersed in Christianity, that I'm surrounded by overt displays of Christology, bombarded with a barrage of Christian messages on a daily basis, and no community to connect with to exchange thoughts, ideas and opinions that run contrary to the relentless onslaught of Christian dogma - well, it's not a comforting thought that I could be pulled back under.  I don't think I'm inclined to, and not because I've done the wealth of investigation that many forum members have but still the contradictions within the Bible grate on my nerves like finger nails on a blackboard; the violence, hate, and vile, putrid rules and laws cause me to recoil in disgust the way I would from a rotting corpse; and the fact that an all knowing, all blah blah (what is it called here? omni max?) deity would have to create such contrived, convoluted, self defeating situations all while hiding away offends my basic sense of right and wrong.  Not to mention, I have a little problem with this beings apparent inability inability to control or contain it's nemesis (satan).  All of this is part of my nature, my personality, and was in place long before I acknowledged that god was not speaking to me, reaching out to me, showing himself to me no matter that I called loudly from the heart.

So I don't think I will succumb, but it perplexes me when some do and I'm honest with myself to admit that it could happen to me as I don't know the driver behind it.  On the other hand, I do now have this forum to turn to where I get to benefit from the aforementioned wealth of investigation of other forum members.  I have been exposed to so much information since I wandered onto this site, and at such a fast rate, that I get an ice cream headache from it.   :D  And additionally, I have been exposed to debate styles that eventually (if not right from the beginning of the debate) leave the Christian apologists floundering around - which reinforces my opinion that TJANSAAG (There Just Ain't No Such Animal As God).  (My version of TANSTAFL).  The irony - I received the link to this forum in an email from a Christian warning Christians to stay away from this evil site of satan.  Naturally, I had to check it out.  So . . . . I had to tell the helpful friend that their email was a "godsend".  I LMAO.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2009, 07:23:25 PM by lost_ti_bon_ange »
Can omniscient God, who
Knows the future, find
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Change His future mind?
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Offline 604ipe

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2009, 06:59:32 PM »
I watched Strobel's DVD The Case for Christ if it was interseting enough I was going to get the book.

Lame. He uses ideas that have been shot down right here in this forum. Bacically it seemed to be a testimony about himself by himself. No really hard evidence that we haven't dealt with here.


 :)zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Offline Deus ex Machina

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2009, 07:03:58 PM »
Holy paragraph breaks, LTBA!
No day in which you learn something is wasted.

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2009, 07:17:03 PM »
Holy paragraph breaks, LTBA!

(red faced)  Free flow thought, no excuse, I do know better.
Can omniscient God, who
Knows the future, find
The omnipotence to
Change His future mind?
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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2009, 07:30:24 PM »
You'll be ok LTBA.

What's the significance of your name?
You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline Pale Rider

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2009, 07:56:22 PM »
I watched Strobel's DVD The Case for Christ if it was interseting enough I was going to get the book.

Lame. He uses ideas that have been shot down right here in this forum. Bacically it seemed to be a testimony about himself by himself. No really hard evidence that we haven't dealt with here.


 :)zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Whats the point of the book if he is rehashing old propositions? Does he bring anything new to light?

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2009, 08:07:06 PM »
You'll be ok LTBA.

What's the significance of your name?

Ah shucks (scuffs at dirt); thanks.  I come here hoping to learn, and if I have to get smacked on the head in the process, I most likely deserved it.

The ti bon ange is considered by practitioners of voodoo to be that part of the soul attached to the individual, and is the part captured by a bokor to create a zombie.  I've been taking a look at other religions and that concept caught my attention.  Looking back on my years as a Christian, I feel like I was controlled by the religion, as a zombie is controlled by the bokor.

The 'lost' part is a nod to the evolution of my charcater - I've lost the blind faith of my youth, I've lost my connection to my roots and my friends and family.  But I've also lost my mental immaturity, I've lost my 'waiting for guidance from God' inertia, I've lost my refusal to seek out knowledge and explore new ideas because they're not from God and my 'condemn' me.  And all those losses let me gain.
Can omniscient God, who
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Change His future mind?
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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2009, 08:11:06 PM »
Neato.

Ti-bon-ange in French means "little good angel". That's how I see your name when I read it. Lost little good angel.

bon and ange mean good and angel respectively. "ti" is a shortened version of "petit"(small) where I am from, and so that is how it reads for me. It could mean something else.

You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2009, 08:43:58 PM »
Neato.

Ti-bon-ange in French means "little good angel". That's how I see your name when I read it. Lost little good angel.

bon and ange mean good and angel respectively. "ti" is a shortened version of "petit"(small) where I am from, and so that is how it reads for me. It could mean something else.



That fits too.  I spent all of those years trying to be good, trying to be Christlike, doing all of the right things, and now everyone who knew/knows me as that would see me as lost.  Even the duplication of good, because I really, really wanted to be a good Christian.  Not sure about the angel part, unless we count trying to be Christlike.

What are the words for niece and nephew?  Perhaps if I start calling mine by the French words I can impress them with my ever expanding knowledge.  (They mock me mercilessly for stumbling around the internet so I have to 'show them who's boss' by surprising them with things they don't know, and it's getting harder as they get older.  Although I keep learning knew things every day from everyone on this forum.)
Can omniscient God, who
Knows the future, find
The omnipotence to
Change His future mind?
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Offline Whitney

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2009, 09:47:28 PM »
I chose other.  From what I have read of Strobel's work, he does not make a very good case for why he went from atheist to believer.  I am not convinced that he's put much deep thought into the issue.  From what he said in the above, it sounds like he's always looking for quick answers rather than being concerned about the truth.

Offline sortasuperb

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2009, 10:21:44 PM »
Strobel thinks he found God, but what he has is a good publicist.

His version of atheism sounds suspiciously Christian in nature; i.e., it fulfills every standard Christian generalization about us.  Coincidence? I don't think so.

Don't worry LTBA.  You've got a big advantage over Stroble.  You've actually thought about it.  You'll be fine. 

I can't think for you. But if I have to I can think against you...

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2009, 11:03:48 PM »
LTBA,

neveu (nephew) nièce (niece)

Can't think of a phonetic spelling for "neveu", but "nièce" is pronounced like this --> "nee + esss"
You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2009, 11:31:24 PM »
Strobel thinks he found God, but what he has is a good publicist.

His version of atheism sounds suspiciously Christian in nature; i.e., it fulfills every standard Christian generalization about us.  Coincidence? I don't think so.

Don't worry LTBA.  You've got a big advantage over Stroble.  You've actually thought about it.  You'll be fine. 




Engaging the intellect seems to be core of it.  I didn't think about it when I was a Christian.  Or I should say I didn't think beyond the Christian response when I did think about it.  Once the brain cells started stirring around I realized the Christian *doodie* really does reek.  I won't worry too much as long as my synapses keep firing.  Thanks for the vote of confidence.
Can omniscient God, who
Knows the future, find
The omnipotence to
Change His future mind?
   - Karen Owens -

Offline lost_ti_bon_ange

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #20 on: January 03, 2009, 11:36:50 PM »
LTBA,

neveu (nephew) nièce (niece)

Can't think of a phonetic spelling for "neveu", but "nièce" is pronounced like this --> "nee + esss"


The second sounds a lot like the English so perhaps the first does as well.  Thank you.
Can omniscient God, who
Knows the future, find
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Change His future mind?
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Offline 604ipe

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2009, 02:13:01 AM »
I watched Strobel's DVD The Case for Christ if it was interseting enough I was going to get the book.

Lame. He uses ideas that have been shot down right here in this forum. Bacically it seemed to be a testimony about himself by himself. No really hard evidence that we haven't dealt with here.


 :)zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Whats the point of the book if he is rehashing old propositions? Does he bring anything new to light?


Absolutely none.

Offline Pale Rider

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #22 on: January 04, 2009, 11:26:24 AM »
I watched Strobel's DVD The Case for Christ if it was interseting enough I was going to get the book.

Lame. He uses ideas that have been shot down right here in this forum. Bacically it seemed to be a testimony about himself by himself. No really hard evidence that we haven't dealt with here.


 :)zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Whats the point of the book if he is rehashing old propositions? Does he bring anything new to light?


Absolutely none.

Thanks. Then I do not have to bother purchasing the book.

Offline Count Iblis

Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #23 on: January 05, 2009, 01:03:53 PM »
I also would like to know about his upbringing. Dollars to donuts it was christian-type.

My guess is that he probably grew up in a very religious environment and found it oppressive. His Atheism seems to have been born of adolescent rebellion. Even as an Atheist he clearly had a holier-than-thou attitude. But he also felt guilty about enjoying life (again, my guess is that he was raised in a Roman Catholic environment). So after he outgrew the rebellion phase the guilt got to him. This was coupled with pressure from his wife who had recently converted to Christianity. It's really no surprise that he went back to Christianity. 
Religion is an act of sedition against reason.--P.Z. Myers

To find out more about the Evil Atheist Conspiracy visit http://www.atheistthinktank.net/

you know, hell is going to be so jammed full of lying Christians that I fear I will never get in.  --velkyn

Offline Cycle4Fun

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #24 on: January 05, 2009, 04:01:47 PM »
My mother gave me A Case for Christ shortly after college.  I think she knew I was losing my faith and had been doing so for years.  I read the book and found the arguments very poor.  The book actually helped me start to examine apologetics and the opposing atheist views and rebuttals.

In his own way, Lee Strobel helped me become a non believer in the Christian god.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2009, 04:05:58 PM by Cycle4Fun »
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Offline velkyn

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #25 on: January 05, 2009, 04:24:42 PM »
the fellow over at http://www.ebonmusings.org/atheism/apologetics.html does a good job at reviewing such nonsense.
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Offline Atheist_Convert

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2009, 04:55:23 PM »
Quote from: Strobel
Essentially, I realized that to stay an atheist, I would have to believe that nothing produces everything; non-life produces life; randomness produces fine-tuning; chaos produces information; unconsciousness produces consciousness; and non-reason produces reason. Those leaps of faith were simply too big for me to take, especially in light of the affirmative case for God’s existence and Jesus’ resurrection (and, hence, his divinity). In other words, in my assessment the Christian worldview accounted for the totality of the evidence much better than the atheistic worldview.

Every single one of these conclusions is arrived at when you start with the pre-supposition of "design". In that regard they are strawman arguments, for instance instead of saying "I would have to believe that non-reason produces reason" it would be more accurate to state that "since there is no evidence of supernatural causation, I would have to believe that from naturalistic causes and randomness, the universe has arrived at it's current state". Strobel's position is like the lottery winner who states "it has to be divine purpose that I ended up with the winning lottery ticket, the odds are too great against my winning for there to be any other possibility".

It's just a dressed up watch maker argument. My hunch is with his "journalistic and legal" background, he saw a whale of a marketing opportunity and grabbed it. There is no greater gullible market than christendom. Why should the televangelists reap all the profits? ;D

Offline Hermes

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1
« Reply #27 on: January 10, 2009, 10:11:06 AM »
Quote
Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 2

You’ve essentially said before that you interviewed only Christian scholars/apologists in your books because you were asking questions in the shoes of a skeptic and you wanted to know the Christian explanation to certain questions. Weren’t there many questions you may not have thought of that other skeptics could have asked? In other words, wouldn’t it have been a wise move to take the Christian responses back to secular scholars who could’ve proposed counter-arguments you did not think of? Would it be problematic to your reading audience if your books had more diverse dialogue (multiple viewpoints)?

Thanks for your question and the opportunity to explain the methodology of The Case for Christ. As the subtitle indicates (“A Journalist’s Personal Investigation of the Evidence for Jesus”), this book is about my own spiritual journey. As I explained in the introduction, this book was my effort to retrace and expand upon my original investigation in print form. As I explained earlier, this original investigation included extensive research of all sides of these issues. For the book, I decided to ask Christian experts the questions that had stood between me and God, and I left it to the reader to decide whether their answers were reasonable and compelling.

When a scholar offered an answer to one of my questions, many times I would come back at him with my own further objections. Often, these follow-up questions were informed by my reading of skeptics through the years. Indeed, I had studied the writings of enough atheists and liberal scholars during my original investigation to know what they would most likely say in response to the scholar. If the skeptics had a good point, I would try to raise it; if I thought their responses to this particular issue were weak, or that the answer was pretty obvious, or that this exchange would take me into a side issue, I didn’t. Did I cover every possible objection? No, I didn’t, and I couldn’t. Naturally, there are good questions that didn’t get addressed. But keep in mind that The Case for Christ is merely an introductory work on this topic; each line of questioning could have gone on and on. Each chapter easily could be an entire book in itself. As it is, I was pushing the limits of a popular-level work; the mass market edition is about 400 pages in length.

I didn’t want to get into an endless loop of expert versus expert. After all, you can find a Ph.D. to say virtually anything. That’s why I didn’t just ask these scholars for their opinions; instead, I pressed them on why they believe what they believe. I challenged them to present facts and explanations that could be evaluated by the reader. As I said in the book’s conclusion:

Quote
… maybe questions still linger for you. Perhaps I didn’t address the objection that’s uppermost in your mind. Fair enough. However, I trust that the amount of information reported in these pages will at least have convinced you that it’s reasonable — in fact, imperative — to continue your investigation.

I went on to encourage readers to thoroughly and systematically pursue answers to whatever spiritual sticking point they have — in fact, to make this a front-burner issue in their life.

Of course, I could have used a different approach to the book. For instance, I could have used a debate format that would have featured multiple viewpoints, going back and forth between opposing experts. However, there already were (and today are more) books like this. For example, Christian scholar Gary Habermas and then-atheist Antony Flew published their 1985 debate on the resurrection (an encounter, by the way, that four of five judges from a wide spectrum of views and persuasions said Habermas won, with the remaining judge calling it a draw) and Christian J. P. Moreland and atheist Kai Nielsen published their debate on the existence of God in 1993. [Hemant's note: Those books can be found here and here.]

I encourage Christians and skeptics to read or attend debates like these. Christian scholar William Lane Craig has several transcripts of his debates with prominent atheists on his web site, www.reasonablefaith.org. My television show Faith Under Fire was based on a debate format, where I invited such atheists as Richard Carrier, Michael Shermer, Tim Callahan and Edward Tabash to debate such Christian apologists as Craig, Habermas and Moreland. We’ve even produced a curriculum using tapes of these debates, so that small groups of skeptics and Christians can sit down together, hear both sides of these issues, and have a healthy interaction in which they can offer their own perspectives and opinions. Clearly, I don’t think Christians have anything to fear in the marketplace of ideas.

However, I wanted my book to deal with the pursuit of my own questions and concerns, believing that they reflect the basic issues most people have. In the end, I think I did cover the topics fairly well, considering how generally weak the critiques of the book have been.

By the way, I did interview a noted skeptic for my book The Case for Faith. I extensively quoted Canada’s most famous agnostic, Charles Templeton, author of Farewell to God, about why he abandoned his Christian faith and became a critic of Christianity. (As I described, Templeton broke into tears when he told me how much he missed Jesus. I still get chills when I listen to the recording of that exchange.)

Templeton ended up raising the very same objections to Christianity that originally took me down the path toward atheism. However, in the remainder of the book I confronted Christian scholars with these issues and in my view they offered rational and compelling answers. Again, I left it to each reader to come to his or her own conclusions. Obviously, each person is free to make up his or her own mind. Seems to me that’s fair.
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Offline Hermes

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Re: Lee Strobel Answers Your Questions, Part 1 & 2
« Reply #28 on: January 10, 2009, 10:20:47 AM »
Question;

If non-Christians aren't swayed by Strobel's words, why do so many Christians promote his books as well as others that are similar?



To me, these books and apologetics in general are just long winded versions of posting Bible passages.

Tip to Christians; non-Christians don't see your religious texts as uniquely special and above all other texts.  If they did, they would probably be Christians.  If you want to talk about your religion, make it relevant; put it into practice.  Yet, ask yourself, when you do what is the 'Christian' part as opposed to the 'human' part?  Why not just skip the middle man and be proud to be human?
Smart people believe weird things because they are skilled at defending beliefs they arrived at for non-smart reasons. --Michael Shermer

The history of religion is a long attempt to reconcile old custom with new reason, to find a sound theory for an absurd practice.  --Sir James George Frazer