Is Belief in God Good, Bad or Irrelevant?: A Professor and a Punk Rocker Discuss Science, Religion, Naturalism & Christianity

Front Cover
Preston Jones
InterVarsity Press, Sep 28, 2010 - Religion - 164 pages
6 Reviews
Greg Graffin is frontman, singer and songwriter for the punk band Bad Religion. He also happens to have a Ph.D. in zoology and wrote his dissertation on evolution, atheism and naturalism. Preston Jones is a history professor at a Christian college and a fan of Bad Religion's music. One day, on a whim, Preston sent Greg an appreciative e-mail. That was the start of an extraordinary correspondence. For several months, Preston and Greg sent e-mails back and forth on big topics like God, religion, knowledge, evil, evolution, biology, destiny and the nature of reality. Preston believes in God; Greg sees insufficient evidence for God's existence. Over the course of their friendly debate, they tackle such cosmic questions as: Is religion rational or irrational? Does morality require belief in God? Do people only believe in God because they are genetically predisposed toward religion? How do you make sense of suffering in the world? Is this universe all there is? And what does it all matter? In this engaging book, Preston and Greg's actual e-mail correspondence is reproduced, along with bonus materials that provide additional background and context. Each makes his case for why he thinks his worldview is more compelling and explanatory. While they find some places to agree, neither one convinces the other. They can't both be right. So which worldview is more plausible? You decide.
 

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Unlike many people whose reviews I have read, I approach Is Belief in God Good, Bad, or Irrelevant?: A Professor and a Punk Rocker Discuss Science, Religion, Naturalism, and Christianity (or, as I ... Read full review

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Selected pages

Contents

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
9
INTRODUCTION
13
GETTING ACQUAINTED
21
INQUISITIONS
24
HATING GOD
31
ODD CHRISTIANS AND NATURALISM
34
THE TOUGH WORLD
40
BOOKS
45
THE FALL
78
FREE WILL
87
FREEDOM AND ENVIRONMENT
95
MYSTERY
102
FAN MAIL
118
CHRISTIANITY AND VIOLENCE
132
PROXIMATE VERSUS ULTIMATE MEANING
137
STUDY GUIDE
147

THEISM VERSUS NATURALISM
52
THE END OF THE TOUR
60
THE INEVITABILITY OF PEOPLE AND FOUNDATIONS FOR MORALITY
63

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About the author (2010)

Preston Jones is a hip professor of history at John Brown University in Arkansas. He loves rock music and believes that God is not irrelevant. He serves on the advisory board of ECPAT-USA, an international organization devoted to combating child prostitution. Preston is also a contributing editor to Books and Culture.

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