John Loftus, the relentless and indefatigable atheist critic of Christianity, has published a new book, The Outsider Test for Faith. Join our forum to discuss this exciting new book with the author!
Loftus argues in The Outsider Test for Faith that given the nature and wide diversity of religious faith, the only way to know which religion is true, if there is one, is the test that he explains and defends in his new book. It has been described by James Lindsay as a “silver bullet argument,” and by Richard Carrier as “one of the most effective and powerful arguments for atheism there is.” This course is based on the book. Students will read through it and discussions will be based on it. Students will learn what the test is about, think through the wide variety of objections to the test, and be invited to consider its impact on all future religious debates.
start/end dates – November 1 / November 30, 2014
deadline to register – EXTENDED to November 7th
Schedule: Specific reading and discussion goals are set for every week, completing four units in four weeks, but within that framework you can participate in every element on your own time. There are no live events to be missed. One book by John Loftus is required reading (see below). Everything else about the course is provided inside the classroom website. Course lectures, readings, links to websites, and forums for discussions between the instructor and students are included in the Moodle website classroom. Visit the class anytime to contribute your posts and receive John Loftus’s replies in discussion forums.
Course Reading: John Loftus, The Outsider Test for Faith. Students purchase their own copy (print or electronic) before course begins. Additional materials will be provided electronically inside the online classroom at no cost to students.
GENERAL INFORMATION: Online classrooms and their discussion threads are accessible 24/7, so you can participate at any hour of the day when there’s some time in your busy schedule. Instructors will not be on live video and you won’t be either – there is nothing happening on camera and no particular time of day you have to be present. If an instructor posts a pre-recorded video, you can view it at your convenience. There’s nothing ‘live’ to be missed, and course instructor respond individually and promptly to all questions and comments. Instructors lead everyone through lectures and readings, but no attendance is taken and there are no assignments to complete – instructors are always available when you are ready to engage them about what is on your mind.
John W. Loftus earned M.A., M.Div., and Th.M. degrees in Philosophy, Theology, and the Philosophy of Religion, the last of which was under William Lane Craig. He also studied in a Ph.D. program at Marquette University for a year and a half in the area of Theology and Ethics. Before leaving the church, he had ministries in Michigan, Illinois, and Indiana, and taught at several Christian and secular colleges. He is the author of Why I Became an Atheist: A Former Preacher Rejects Christianity (rev. ed., 2012) and The Outsider Test for Faith: How to Know Which Religion Is True (2013). He edited The Christian Delusion: Why Faith Fails (2010), The End of Christianity (2011), and Christianity is Not Great: How Faith Fails (2014). He has also coauthored, with Dr. Randal Rauser, God or Godless? One Atheist. One Christian. Twenty Controversial Questions (Baker Books, 2013). Visit his popular blog at debunkingchristianity.blogspot.com/.