Monday, March 14, 2005

Another Mind Set Free

Here is an interesting email that I received recently from a former evangelical leader who changed his mind:

I recently discovered your website and want to thank you for the excellent job you have done explaining the process and reasoning that led to your deconversion. As a person who was "born again" in 1972-73, largely as the result of Josh MacDowell's apologetics, I remained a zealous evangelical until last year. In fact, I hosted a live Christian Call-in show based out of [city] from 1995-2000. My process, while not identical to yours, has been remarkably similar.

While I have no evangelical zeal to convert all my Christian friends, I find that because I was so high profile for so many years, I now constantly find myself trying to rejection of both Christianity and Judaism. As I know you have discovered, my reasons fall on deaf ears as result of what I call "Deliberate Ignorance."Your cogent arguments are going to be extremely helpful to me, not by changing any minds, but by freeing me from having to provide my own explantions.

Thanks again. I look forward to reading future additions to your sight.

This man's experience is similar to the experience of many other people. Steve Locks documents that many influential evangelicals have turned from Christianity. Few have made the reverse switch. Yes, I know that folks like Josh Mcdowell and Lee Stroble claims to have switched from atheism, but I know of no documented credentials of their zealous support of atheism before their conversion. Since they have published so much as Christians why did they never publish anything pro-atheist before they converted? And why do they seem so uninformed of the arguments actually made by atheists? Perhaps they were apathetic before becoming Christians, but there is a big difference between informed atheism and apathy.

On the other hand, we have folks like this writer that were once clearly in the evangelical camp--leaders in the camp--who changed their minds.

I suspect that the writer went through years of cognitive dissonance as he dealt with Christian callers on his show. No doubt he heard from Christians of many persuasions, with each convinced that the Holy Spirit was on his side. And no doubt it was difficult to reconcile that so many different opinions could come from one Holy Spirit.

Worse, he may have had to try to answer liberal Christians and skeptics who called into the show. And he may have realized that these callers were more rational than the fundamentalists that called.

This is yet one more testimony to the fact that it is very difficult to be fully infomed of the many views out there while adhering to a strict evangelical Christian view.

I am glad this writer found a better life.

Sunday, March 06, 2005


A reader wrote to me with these comments:

I just finished your last page. I don't remember which page got me to yours, I spent all last night and today reading, as I had time.

The only thing is, I can no longer say Oh My God! LOL

I've read Steve Corbett's essay on Christianity, and his 2 others.. and I think he did a great job, but your pages are very well done! The way you set the stage on page one and flow each page together is great.

Going through your site and especially Steve Corbett's, and using to read the references, all I can say is WOW! I never really read through the Bible before.. I only ever saw those selected quotes people use. WOW! I can't believe the things that are in there that obviously are never read, or just 'not seen' by those who can't handle the truth.

Thanks for sharing with the world your journey, couldn't have written it better if I tried.

It truly is amazing to open one's eyes and to see what is actually written in the Bible.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Can I help a young-earther?

A reader wrote to me:

I found your whole site so interesting- I keep coming back to it. In fact, I have it on my favorites page. I asked my sister about the old earth/ young earth debate (she is a young earther, which is what I also had been taught) and she claims that the dating used is based on a faulty premise to begin with, so it actually doesn't accurately tell us the age of anything. Could you please respond to this and/ or send me in a direction where I could better understand (and please make it friendly- I was an English major, not science! ). Thank you!!
I am glad this reader found my site interesting. I can understand how her sister might claim that the dating methods are based on faulty premises. Unfortunately, there are books out there that make false claims about origins. They claim to be based on science, but they are based on a faulty understanding of science. Unfortunately, it is fairly easy to write a book that can convince non-experts that a certain idea is scientific. If people do not understand the arguments, and see only impressive scientific jargon and claims, they can be fooled. That is why true science is not based on whether a book can convince the uninformed, but on whether it can convince those who understand the relevant facts. And those who understand the relevant facts overwhelmingly accept an old earth.

I recommend some links at my site. Yes, all will involve science, for that is the only way to really resolve the issue.

I am glad for those who want to help Creationists understand science. But we must remember that convincing someone to change a deeply held religious view is a very hard thing to do. We must decide whether it is worth trying.