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Contending with Christianity's Critics: Answering New Atheists and Other Objectors Paperback – August 1, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Contending with Christianity's Critics: Answering New Atheists and Other Objectors
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  • Passionate Conviction: Contemporary Discourses on Christian Apologetics
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  • Come Let Us Reason: New Essays in Christian Apologetics
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Paul Copan is a professor and the Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics at Palm Beach Atlantic University in West Palm Beach, Florida. He holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Marquette University.

William Lane Craig is research professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology in La Mirada, California. His Ph.D. in Philosophy is from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: B&H Academic (August 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805449361
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805449365
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #855,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Lemaro Thompson on June 30, 2009
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This collection is wonderful, especially in combination with the previous collection Passionate Conviction. It really does provide excellent essays to rationally and reasonably defend the truth of Christianity.

The best thing about this book is that it deals with numerous contemporary issues and concerns. It is hard since the popularization of Dawkins and Erhman for one to simply jump to the gospel, without first having to sort out "delusional" issues or "mistranslations" or "corruptions."

This book provides some of the necessary tools. Now looking at the essays covered, one will realize that other issues that are important are missing, namely that of relativism or comparative religions. So it is not a complete guide, but if one picks up passionate conviction those issues are addressed.

Therefore one might want to see which issues are of most concern to you and thus pick volumes accordingly.

The minor let down, was getting the book and starting to read Craig's critique of dawkins only to find that it was about 3 pages (other authors give a more substantive analysis). Although it did address some issues, I wanted a lot more. Additionally, if one owns a huge collection of apologetics textbooks, one may ask is it worth it? For example Craig Evans has a chapter on Fabricating Jesus, but he has written a whole book on the issue. There are other instances of this (mostly with the Jesus of History section), in which I owned the book, in which the expert has written and from which the article may have been derived or adapted.

Moments like those made me wonder if I was getting my full money's worth (or if i own too many books !) , but in the end I was pleased as it was a great recap and so there is so much good material in a portable compact volume.
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This collection of essays is not for the weak of mind, as there are plenty of places to go deep in the thinking realm of Christianity and a response to the New Atheists. As with any compilation of essays, there were good ones in this volume and others I just skimmed through--probably at least 4 or 5 did not grab my attention at all, and thus the 4-star rating. But the good ones make the book worthwhile reading. My favorites were ch. 1 (Dawkins' Delusion, Craig), ch. 10 (How Scholars Fabricate Jesus, Evans), and ch. 15 (Did God become a Jew? A Defense of the Incarnation). What I enjoy about compilation books like these is that the reader can pick up at any chapter and get something out of it. Again, it's a worthwhile pick, but not if you are opposed to books making you think deeply.
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This is an excellent collection of essays defending the Christian faith and doctrines. Starting from William Lane Craig's knockout to Richard Dawkins (no wonder Dawkins is to afraid to debate Craig) and continuing with victory blows from an all-star cast of Christian thinkers. This isn't an end all debates collection but it's powerful nontheless. Some surprises here too, like Chapter 16 on the doctrine of Penal Substatution and Chapter 12 "Who did Jesus think he was?", which took an approach I didn't expect (defending Mark 8:29-30). Chapter 9, "The Resurrection of Jesus Time Line" by Gary Habermas is a very important essay for every Christian to read and ought to be taught in every church. Chapter 10 by Craig A. Evans covers some of the information he gives in his "Fabricating Jesus" book, which is worth reading on it's own.
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"Contending With Christianity's Critics" is the second book in a series on "cutting-edge Christian apologetics". It includes 18 essays from various Christian scholars on a number of different subjects. So, how much a person likes or dislikes the book would, in part, be influenced by how interested she is in the topics that are addressed.

If you're considering buying the book, do this: look at the Table of Contents. If this has you longing to explore further then: #1) you're likely to be something of an apologetics book nerd like me--that's the bad news; and 2) go ahead and dive in, you've hit pay dirt.

The book is divided into three parts: 1) The Existence of God; 2) The Jesus of History; and 3) The Coherence of Christian Doctrine.

I found part one on "The Existence of God" to be the most interesting. And the final chapter deals with Open Theism, I found it to be a helpful take on the subject.

If you're even reading this far you might as well get the book because it's clear that you like this stuff. On the other hand, if you're on this page by accident all I can say is: "See what happens when you're not careful with your mouse."
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The authors are out of touch with other scientific research in quantum physics and archaeology. This is a philosophical you say, I say treatment of the subject. Quantum physics already determined that the Earth had a definite beginning if I read it right. To fall for the argument that God isn't omnipotent since He cannot for instance lift a stone He made to be unliftable is laughable. Merely lifting a stone presupposes gravity. God is a timeless Being. He made gravity and is not bound by it.
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This book discussions in the defense against atheism manages to fend off all negative thought on trying to dispose of God no matter what the reasoning. Very well thought through. I can't fathom all the hours it took to put this all together and making the sense of all the stances against. I would not claim to understand all of this but it is a wonderful reference for those discussions.
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