Look at what Reformed Seth sent me in my e-mail on Thursday morning! A podcast!
Here is the description:
On this program, Michael Horton talks with Michael Shermer, editor of Skeptic magazine and author of numerous books including, Why People Believe Weird Things, Why Darwin Matters, and most recently The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies—How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths. The conversation centers on Shermer’s new book, and why he believes his skeptical and agnostic worldview presents a better explanation for the universe than the claims of the Christian faith. Following the interview, Michael Horton talks with Dean L. Overman, author of The Case Against Accident & Self Organization, about the mathematical improbability of life forming by chance.
And here are the questions asked:
- Tell us about your background, how did you transition to agnosticism?
- Are you firm in your convictions, or are you open to changing your mind?
- What is your new book “The Believing Brain” about?
- Was your skepticism also the result of the subjective, emotional belief-generating process described in the book?
- How do you explain the mathematical underpinnings of nature?
- How do you account for the foundational beliefs that make science possible?
- Are these precursor beliefs for science also the result of the subjective, emotional belief-generating process?
- How do you explain the fine-tuning of the universe on naturalism?
- How do you respond to the historical claims of Christianity, like the resurrection of Jesus?
- Is it accurate to put all religious claims in the same category without evaluating the claims specifically?
- Why do you think that if there are two large groups that disagree about a claim, that no one is right?
- Explain why reason itself is not undermined if man is the result of a random process of evolution?
This interview reminded me a lot of the post I wrote analyzing the apostasy of Dan Barker.
I wanted to write an angry refutation of Shermer’s ignorant speculations. But then I found this follow-up program (MP3 here) featuring the magnificent Greg Koukl of Stand to Reason. Greg’s refutation of Shermer is a lot more respectful than what I would say. Maybe it’s better if I wait a bit and then weigh in later in the comments.
You will also benefit enormously from this debate transcript featuring Michael Shermer and Greg Koukl.