Monthly Archive: August 2012

Aug 20 2012

Social justice versus family values

Writing for the Christian Science Monitor, Brad Knickerbocker observes: For the first time since the founding of the Republic, none of the major party candidates for president or vice president is a WASP – a white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant – a fact that was confirmed when Mitt Romney picked Paul Ryan to be his running mate. …

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Aug 19 2012

Heroes that actually deserve the name

There are relatively few people in this world today who impress me enough for me to call them heroes. But they exist. Belatedly, imperfectly, incompletely, I would like to thank them for inspiring me and encouraging me to expect more and better things. Here, in no particular order, are some of them. Please help me …

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Aug 19 2012

Justin and the “virgin”

Over at Evangelical Realism, we’re working our way through Justin Martyr’s First Apology, and we’ve come to the second of his “incontrovertible” proofs that Jesus is the Son of God. Would it surprise you to find out he’s taking an Old Testament passage out of context?

Aug 18 2012

Prayers for sale–but not for long

Freedom of religion notwithstanding, it seems that certain types of supernatural products and services are downright unworkable, for entirely commercial reasons. Just ask EBay. Beginning Aug.30, the online auction site will ban the sale of curses, spells, hexes, magic, prayers, blessing services, magic potions, healing sessions and more… “EBay regularly reviews categories and updates our …

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Aug 17 2012

FRC quick to exploit shooting

On Wednesday, a young man named Floyd Corkins made an inept attack on the offices of the Family Research Council, an act of politically-motivated domestic terrorism that is no different from bombing an abortion clinic. Clearly, such actions are unjustified, indefensible, and reprehensible. Working on the theory that one bad turn deserves another, the FRC …

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Aug 16 2012

Voting for Mormons: another perspective

Blair Kelly claims to “strongly disagree” with my position on voting for “a Mormon,” and has written a full post explaining all the why’s and how’s. It’s a pretty good read, and I’d recommend it. My only quibble is that I’m not so sure we really disagree. I would want to ask any candidate, Mormon …

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Aug 15 2012

Gospel Disproof #51: No good arguments for God

I’m going to piggyback off an excellent post by The Uncredible Hallq on the topic of whether there are any good arguments for God. You often hear Christian apologists protest that, when you disprove Apologetic Argument X, you still have not disproved the existence of God, because you haven’t addressed Apologetic Argument Y (and when …

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Aug 14 2012

White House pulls plug on popular petition (or does it?)

The Electronic Privacy Information Center reports a disturbing but sadly unsurprising development in the struggle to recover our civil liberties. At approximately 11:30 am EDT, the White House removed a petition about the TSA airport screening procedures from the White House “We the People” website. About 22,500 of the 25,000 signatures necessary for a response …

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Aug 13 2012

Miracles and the power of suggestion

According to a story in the New York Times, the placebo effect isn’t just limited to a drug’s expected benefits. People can and do suffer negative side effects as a result of believing they are taking real drugs. It’s called the “nocebo” effect. In a curious study, a team of Italian gastroenterologists asked people with …

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Aug 12 2012

The art of prophecy

Here’s a challenge for you. Consider these six words “He washes his clothes in wine.” Given that this statement appears in Genesis 49:11, can you turn it into a prediction that Messiah will be born of a virgin? Justin Martyr can, as we see this week at Evangelical Realism.  

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