My daughter and I, both atheists, are teaming up to review J. Warner Wallace’s apologetics book ‘Cold Case Christianity For Kids’. All posts in the series are collected here.
Jeffries is about to explain the indirect evidence for the existence of God. Which he illustrates with diagrams. This cues a joke about ‘Better to be an artist than a con artist!’ which Wallace seems to have written so that he can put in one of his little grey inset boxes with the question ‘Some people think the disciples of Jesus were con artists, but is this a reasonable conclusion?’ No, Wallace, I do not think they had any good motivation to try a con that would have put their lives on the line and I do agree they believed what they were saying about the risen Jesus, but that does not mean they were right.
“You know,” Katie said thoughtfully of Jeffries “I think he might be a con artist, because he’s trying to trick them into being Christians.”
I…. couldn’t actually counter that. As previously mentioned, one probably unintentional effect of Wallace’s writing format for this book is that Jeffries is in effect presented as running a fairly blatant Christian evangelising class disguised as a police cadet class. I don’t think Wallace deliberately meant it that way – I think he’d probably be quite shocked if he heard it described that way – but that still is what the description in his book comes down to, and it’s really not OK.
Anyway, Jeffries assures the cadets ‘”This won’t be difficult to sketch out”‘ and proceeds to draw a line of falling dominoes (to indicate First Cause), which sounded quite difficult to sketch out as far as I was concerned. Katie, the family artist, assured me that for someone who was good at art it wouldn’t be that difficult, but pointed out that drawing it on a whiteboard, as Jeffries was, would be pretty difficult; whiteboards are hard to draw on. Jeffries goes on to illustrate his other points with pictures of a designer’s compass, a DNA molecule, a – you have got to be kidding me – a microscope, and two Ten Commandments-style stone tablets, so, excuse me, but I do not really buy this “This won’t be difficult to sketch out” line. #overthinkingit #seriouslysidetracked
Ahem. The indirect evidence? Ah, yes. Back to Jeffries’ speech:
“First, we’re in a universe that began to exist, just like we talked about before. What made it begin?
“A potato,” Katie suggested.
Whatever it is, it would have to be something outside of space, time, and matter. We know that God fits that description.”
“No, no, no, it’s a potato. But it’s a very lonely potato, so it made a whole universe so it can have friends.”
Jeffries draws a set of falling dominoes on the board….
HAIL THE POTATO! IT’S THE REASON YOU’RE HERE TODAY! BOW DOWN! BOW DOWN! BE FRIENDS WITH POTATO! I’TS WHY YOU WERE CREATED!!!!!!!
HE IS THE LORD AND SAVIOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
…all of which was actually typed by Katie, who grabbed the computer from me to type about her new religion of potato-worship. I clearly wasn’t going to get much insightful conversation about the book that evening.
Having thus covered nothing whatsoever of use in this post, I shall end it here and move on to – I hope – actually answering some of the points properly in my next post.