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Josh McDowell Disciple Now an Atheist

John Loftus has a post about Dustin Lawson, who studied for the ministry and spent a year traveling with Josh McDowell, and how he became an atheist. When I was a Christian teenager and asking questions my pastors couldn’t answer, they continually referred me to McDowell’s apologetics books. It didn’t take long to realize how ignorant and inane McDowell’s arguments were. Here’s the first in a series of videos with Lawson discussing his journey:

Comments

  1. Michael Heath says

    I’d wager McDowell’s books are #1 in one metric: Number of books sold relative to number of sold books completely read.

  2. Reginald Selkirk says

    Number of books sold relative to number of sold books completely read.

    He’d have to contend with Stephen Hawking for that, for completely different reasons.

  3. scienceavenger says

    Josh McDowell is probably responsible for a lot of atheists, given how his ridiculous arguments are often touted by Christians as the best apologetics out there. Your average AP high school student could do better.

  4. matty1 says

    I’m not sure anyone buys McDowell books to read, they buy them to give to other people. It’s a convenient way to feel you’ve done your evangelising without having to actually answer any awkward questions.

    Incidentally I have read Lee Strobel’s Case for Christ and I felt like a teacher correcting the errors as I went along.

  5. exdrone says

    Wow, I found a lot of similarities, but at a much, much smaller scale, between his life and my short flirtation with christian evangelism for three years in university. My skeptical revelation was the omniscience vs free will conundrum. Also, I wasn’t lucky enough to have a god that gave out testicular cancer as a gift. Yikes.

  6. Michael Heath says

    Matty1 @ 6 writes:

    I’m not sure anyone buys McDowell books to read, they buy them to give to other people. It’s a convenient way to feel you’ve done your evangelising without having to actually answer any awkward questions.

    Exactly, and therefore my point @ 1. I’ve been the recipient of two people doing exactly that.

    I actually started his most popular book and soon became convinced not even Josh McDowell read what was published in that book.

  7. grumpyoldfart says

    After the tiger attack, the video went downhill pretty fast. Hope they brighten up the set and the conversation in episode two.

  8. steffp says

    #4, @ tubi
    Have you tried to finish “Foucault’s Pendulum”?
    If I recall aright, I read it in two consecutive nights. Evidence That Demands A Verdict, not so. Too much headbanging…

  9. says

    I never read anything by McDowell, but I did try Lee Strobel’s The Case for Christ. The best part was his discussion of Josephus, which was basically, “Yeah, there’s no doubt those references were later insertions, but that’s just because, as Jew, Josephus originally wrote nasty things about Jesus and some monk later ‘cleaned them up’.”

    And the evidence for that was just that we really, really want it to be that way.

  10. imthegenieicandoanything says

    “The Case for Christ” sounds interesting! Is it a REALLY small case, like an attache case, that they cram him into? Is he forced onto the case whole, or first finely ground up?

  11. Reginald Selkirk says

    Is it a REALLY small case, like an attache case

    It can be much smaller than an attache case. If Jesus H. Christ had been cremated, you would need an urn. But since he ascended into Heaven, it hardly requires any volume at all.

  12. cjcolucci says

    It never occurred to me to doubt the existence of God until someone said he could prove it.

  13. Dustin Lawson says

    I am Dustin Lawson, the guy in the video with Frank Zindler. If I gave the impression, I’m sorry, but I’m not an atheist. I’m an agnostic. My view is that no one has any idea what the truth is on the two most important subjects humanity wants answers to more than any other, “Is there a god?” and “is there an afterlife?” We are just as ignorant as the cave men. Ignorance is my stance. Not atheism.

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