Shai Reads The Case for Christ
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23-03-2017, 03:37 AM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
Alright, thanks for the answer Smile

I have follow up questions but I don't want to sidetrack this thread too much. If you're interested, we could continue elsewhere (I have a thread specifically about this subject, or by PM). No probs if not.

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28-03-2017, 03:51 PM (This post was last modified: 28-03-2017 04:58 PM by Shai Hulud.)
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
So yeah, I've got a day off. Went to see Power Rangers, picked up my medicine, got some groceries, and then decided I'd catch up on Case for Christ on the toilet. "You can do this Shai, just read it through, then you can make a few general notes after, it's not like-"

And then 4 pages into Chapter Six: The Rebuttal Evidence or Lee Strobel goes after the Jesus Seminar with no understanding of anything at all when I went, "Well darn it, I'm doing the notes as I go. Damn Strobel."

We start again with another court case, this time to be able to go on about what rebuttal evidence is, evidence that proves someone's testimony false. As the chapter begins, we start into how we're going to rebut the Jesus Seminar, or as Lee falsely describes them under Can the Jesus Seminar be Refuted?, a small minority of scholars who are interested in attention with what he implies to be unsupported conclusions.

Next up is the inevitable, look-how-awesome-this-expert-is-guys! As Lee goes into this guy's background he again shows his utter ignorance of academia and academic credentials. Like he has to tell us that his expert graduated "cum laude" with his Masters of Divinity and "Magna Cum Laude" with his Ph.D. I would hope so Lee, if you didn't have the GPA to get "cum laude" status, then you would have failed out of the program, because a C is the gentleman's F in grad school. You literally shouldn't be able to graduate with anything less than a cum laude at that level. Now, I'm being generous here Lee, because I'm making the argument you're just hideously ignorant, when it's equally and possibly more likely that you're in fact hideously dishonest and trying to impress the people who read this book uncritically in their church small groups and know nothing of how academia works!

On page 122 he takes another shot at academia, mentioning how this expert may be an adjunct professor of theology at a Christian university, Bethel University, but, has a job as a pastor at a church, so, "This real-world environment helps anchor him in the reality of everyday life." Before I go on, let's talk about Bethel University. When I typed into Google asking about its accreditation, the second result was about a "warning" about that. BU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, one of the regional accreditation bodies for higher education, however, as of January 2016, it seems to have been under warning to improve or lose accreditation, as a local paper reported that it , "is under a 12-month probation period for “institutional effectiveness” and “general education competencies."" It's school of education was also, in July, apparently denied state level accreditation by the state of Tennessee. The vote to not approve that was 8-1 against, and apparently based in a lack of assessment capability and "Candidate knowledge skills and professional dispositions". Granted, the Theology department isn't in that school, but still...this all does not look good for me taking this guy seriously.

Page 124, "Here's the truth," he said "the Jesus Seminar represents an extremely small number of radical-fringe scholars who are on the far, far left wing of New Testament scholarship. It is not the mainstream." Citation please? Of course you won't, you never cite anything in this book. Oh and they're evil liberal fundamentalists out to destroy Christianity or some such no Lee, that's you...and this book...and anyone who knows anything about scholarship; that's the implication we're given here. Also the expert tells us, the Jesus Seminar scholars are at least as biased as Evangelicals, probably more so!

Page 127 we get the quote, "Historians usually operate with the burden of proof on the historian to prove falsity or unreliability, since people are generally not compulsive liars. Without that assumption, we would know very little about ancient history." Suddenly I know why you're an adjunct of theology...because that's basically the opposite of how inquiry works. What the Jesus Seminar is doing is starting with the evidence, not with presuppositional beliefs, and working from there, which is how scientific inquiry should proceed, based out of evidence. Expert also seems to be implying we should trust the Gospels as multiple sources, where the Jesus Seminar does not, because they should totally count as multiple ancient sources (we're so ignoring the Q document's very possibly existence, it's never brought up by Strobel or this expert).

Page 129-130 we go on about Apollonius and the claims of his miracles, and how the fact the Gospels use declarative statements, instead of "some say" or "it has been reported" that means that the Gospels are authentic. Page 131, "And Christianity has nothing to do with life cycles or the harvest." Umm... Facepalm

Oh page 132, we finally bring up the Q document and say there's no evidence for any such thing. Take the expert's word for it. Page 135, "What's not rooted in reality is the faith of liberal scholars." Sort of like the idea that you're an expert that's speaking without bias? Pages 137 and 138 bring us nods to 4 more experts who don't agree fully with the Jesus Seminar. Our first question under "Deliberations" asks you if you've read their findings, and why is it bad for us to believe the news media about faith.

Fully intended to do a two chapter post, but holy crap, I need a break.

Edit:
Chapter Seven: The Identity Evidence

Good news everyone! This chapter is only 11 pages long, including the Deliberations questions!! We're now in Part Two of the book! Why is this good news? Because that means we're one-third done with this exercise in raising my blood pressure. Let's dive into Part Two: Analyzing Jesus.

Holy cow! Maybe this is the point where the book changes; we didn't actually start this chapter with a court case! We started instead by talking about a man whose career I actually know a decent amount about, John Douglas, one of the best profilers in the FBI's history. Oh and already on page 144 Lee takes another shot at academia, for those of you keeping count, where he talks about how some professors probably are mislabeling Jesus as rolling over in His grave at being worshiped as God. Also Lee again has to point out that his graduate degree was "summa cum laude" from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. Facepalm

Page 151, potshot at Last Temptation of Christ. Page 152, start off by fellating William Lane Craig's work.

Not a lot jumped out at me in this chapter honestly. However I do have an overarching observation in the tonal change of the book, or at least with this chapter in particular. We no longer have a mask on where we claim to be going, "how much do we trust the Gospels?" Now it's implicitly implied that we should do as Lee as has and embrace them as fully accurate and capable of being used as our evidence. Our expert doesn't try to use other ancient sources, or the early church fathers, but rather, only relies upon the Gospel accounts themselves.

Need to think of a witty signature.
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28-03-2017, 05:57 PM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
Excellent deconstruction Smile

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28-03-2017, 06:41 PM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
(28-03-2017 05:57 PM)Robvalue Wrote:  Excellent deconstruction Smile

Thank you! Sadly I've noticed a lot of grammatical errors after doing that post (then again, probably to be expected since it was stream of consciousness while reading).

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28-03-2017, 07:23 PM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
(28-03-2017 06:41 PM)Shai Hulud Wrote:  
(28-03-2017 05:57 PM)Robvalue Wrote:  Excellent deconstruction Smile

Thank you! Sadly I've noticed a lot of grammatical errors after doing that post (then again, probably to be expected since it was stream of consciousness while reading).

Better than the book deserves, in any case.
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28-03-2017, 11:53 PM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
(28-03-2017 03:51 PM)Shai Hulud Wrote:  So yeah, I've got a day off. Went to see Power Rangers, picked up my medicine, got some groceries, and then decided I'd catch up on Case for Christ on the toilet. "You can do this Shai, just read it through, then you can make a few general notes after, it's not like-"

And then 4 pages into Chapter Six: The Rebuttal Evidence or Lee Strobel goes after the Jesus Seminar with no understanding of anything at all when I went, "Well darn it, I'm doing the notes as I go. Damn Strobel."

We start again with another court case, this time to be able to go on about what rebuttal evidence is, evidence that proves someone's testimony false. As the chapter begins, we start into how we're going to rebut the Jesus Seminar, or as Lee falsely describes them under Can the Jesus Seminar be Refuted?, a small minority of scholars who are interested in attention with what he implies to be unsupported conclusions.

Next up is the inevitable, look-how-awesome-this-expert-is-guys! As Lee goes into this guy's background he again shows his utter ignorance of academia and academic credentials. Like he has to tell us that his expert graduated "cum laude" with his Masters of Divinity and "Magna Cum Laude" with his Ph.D. I would hope so Lee, if you didn't have the GPA to get "cum laude" status, then you would have failed out of the program, because a C is the gentleman's F in grad school. You literally shouldn't be able to graduate with anything less than a cum laude at that level. Now, I'm being generous here Lee, because I'm making the argument you're just hideously ignorant, when it's equally and possibly more likely that you're in fact hideously dishonest and trying to impress the people who read this book uncritically in their church small groups and know nothing of how academia works!

On page 122 he takes another shot at academia, mentioning how this expert may be an adjunct professor of theology at a Christian university, Bethel University, but, has a job as a pastor at a church, so, "This real-world environment helps anchor him in the reality of everyday life." Before I go on, let's talk about Bethel University. When I typed into Google asking about its accreditation, the second result was about a "warning" about that. BU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, one of the regional accreditation bodies for higher education, however, as of January 2016, it seems to have been under warning to improve or lose accreditation, as a local paper reported that it , "is under a 12-month probation period for “institutional effectiveness” and “general education competencies."" It's school of education was also, in July, apparently denied state level accreditation by the state of Tennessee. The vote to not approve that was 8-1 against, and apparently based in a lack of assessment capability and "Candidate knowledge skills and professional dispositions". Granted, the Theology department isn't in that school, but still...this all does not look good for me taking this guy seriously.

Page 124, "Here's the truth," he said "the Jesus Seminar represents an extremely small number of radical-fringe scholars who are on the far, far left wing of New Testament scholarship. It is not the mainstream." Citation please? Of course you won't, you never cite anything in this book. Oh and they're evil liberal fundamentalists out to destroy Christianity or some such no Lee, that's you...and this book...and anyone who knows anything about scholarship; that's the implication we're given here. Also the expert tells us, the Jesus Seminar scholars are at least as biased as Evangelicals, probably more so!

Page 127 we get the quote, "Historians usually operate with the burden of proof on the historian to prove falsity or unreliability, since people are generally not compulsive liars. Without that assumption, we would know very little about ancient history." Suddenly I know why you're an adjunct of theology...because that's basically the opposite of how inquiry works. What the Jesus Seminar is doing is starting with the evidence, not with presuppositional beliefs, and working from there, which is how scientific inquiry should proceed, based out of evidence. Expert also seems to be implying we should trust the Gospels as multiple sources, where the Jesus Seminar does not, because they should totally count as multiple ancient sources (we're so ignoring the Q document's very possibly existence, it's never brought up by Strobel or this expert).

Page 129-130 we go on about Apollonius and the claims of his miracles, and how the fact the Gospels use declarative statements, instead of "some say" or "it has been reported" that means that the Gospels are authentic. Page 131, "And Christianity has nothing to do with life cycles or the harvest." Umm... Facepalm

Oh page 132, we finally bring up the Q document and say there's no evidence for any such thing. Take the expert's word for it. Page 135, "What's not rooted in reality is the faith of liberal scholars." Sort of like the idea that you're an expert that's speaking without bias? Pages 137 and 138 bring us nods to 4 more experts who don't agree fully with the Jesus Seminar. Our first question under "Deliberations" asks you if you've read their findings, and why is it bad for us to believe the news media about faith.

Fully intended to do a two chapter post, but holy crap, I need a break.

Edit:
Chapter Seven: The Identity Evidence

Good news everyone! This chapter is only 11 pages long, including the Deliberations questions!! We're now in Part Two of the book! Why is this good news? Because that means we're one-third done with this exercise in raising my blood pressure. Let's dive into Part Two: Analyzing Jesus.

Holy cow! Maybe this is the point where the book changes; we didn't actually start this chapter with a court case! We started instead by talking about a man whose career I actually know a decent amount about, John Douglas, one of the best profilers in the FBI's history. Oh and already on page 144 Lee takes another shot at academia, for those of you keeping count, where he talks about how some professors probably are mislabeling Jesus as rolling over in His grave at being worshiped as God. Also Lee again has to point out that his graduate degree was "summa cum laude" from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. Facepalm

Page 151, potshot at Last Temptation of Christ. Page 152, start off by fellating William Lane Craig's work.

Not a lot jumped out at me in this chapter honestly. However I do have an overarching observation in the tonal change of the book, or at least with this chapter in particular. We no longer have a mask on where we claim to be going, "how much do we trust the Gospels?" Now it's implicitly implied that we should do as Lee as has and embrace them as fully accurate and capable of being used as our evidence. Our expert doesn't try to use other ancient sources, or the early church fathers, but rather, only relies upon the Gospel accounts themselves.

Our postgrad degrees we get either a flat degree without ornamentation or "with distinction". What's the scale in US? cum laude < summa cum laude < magna cum laude? I always like to read it as "this person cums loud" Tongue

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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29-03-2017, 12:02 AM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
(28-03-2017 06:41 PM)Shai Hulud Wrote:  
(28-03-2017 05:57 PM)Robvalue Wrote:  Excellent deconstruction Smile

Thank you! Sadly I've noticed a lot of grammatical errors after doing that post (then again, probably to be expected since it was stream of consciousness while reading).

> You are only human. The importance of your project and what you have to say are not diminished by a few typos. Consider
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29-03-2017, 03:26 AM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
(28-03-2017 06:41 PM)Shai Hulud Wrote:  
(28-03-2017 05:57 PM)Robvalue Wrote:  Excellent deconstruction Smile

Thank you! Sadly I've noticed a lot of grammatical errors after doing that post (then again, probably to be expected since it was stream of consciousness while reading).

Don't worry. Your points are clear and convincing. You'd have Mr. Disco-Strobe for breakfast if he dared take you on.

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29-03-2017, 01:27 PM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
Man I'm loving this.

I'm ashamed to admit but back in my mid 20s when I first started wanting to "prove" Christianity, I used Strobel and McDowell as gospel and ate their garbage straight up. I even used it to argue with others.

Oh young ResidentEvilFan, there is just so much I need to warn you about, and yet, tragically I cannot.
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29-03-2017, 01:43 PM
RE: Shai Reads The Case for Christ
(29-03-2017 01:27 PM)ResidentEvilFan Wrote:  ---
Oh young ResidentEvilFan, there is just so much I need to warn you about, and yet, tragically I cannot.

Wisdom & sanity are two of those things which are best looked at from the perspective of ... better late than never. Wink

A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move to higher levels. ~ Albert Einstein
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