[lit-ideas] Lit-Ideas Conversiions

  • From: Eternitytime1@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 13 Dec 2004 23:10:11 EST

I have not yet looked at the *other* versions of this situation, but please  
note that it IS making the rounds of those deep in the Christian fold...(see 
the  _http://www.christianheadlines.com_ (http://www.christianheadlines.com)   
for more info on what is the breaking news in that realm...)
Not to mention that if you speak Korean, there is a wonderful class you can  
take in Dallas these days--in Korean--about the history of the Korean Baptist  
Church.  Sounds like fun, right?  Truly, though--the Korean Baptists  are 
very very large in Kansas and Missouri...
But, this is the article in the Baptist Press News dealing with our latest  
"CS Lewis" type of person...(that comparison will surely be coming...I'd be  
using it already if I were still in that world...<wry look>  Dang,  but I was 
anyway...funny how things like belief systems matter.
I was asked by the CEO of a company (on the trip to Canada we met some  
interesting people) of a website or book of my concept of a "Belief of the 
Club".  I need to get busy, I think!!  <g>  Might not be as  lucrative as the 
internet role playing games (I was pulled into one of them  by my son and one 
of his friends over the weekend--we discussed how at LEAST  20,000 people were 
paying $12.95 a month to play this game (and it is far far  more than that!) 
and so made the boys do the math as to how much per month was  being made--and 
that does NOT count the 'extras' that are possible to be  made...(my son's 
friend has a dad who also plays the game and who buys the  
additions--incredible--)  Even at a minimum, $240,000 a month...I really  need 
to take a break from 
my library world and play with this concept. I read  fantasy and also myths 
and legends--I could develop something as intricate as  what is out there...and 
someone else could play with the graphics.  I am in  SUCH the wrong 
profession.  <sigh>  And not near as fun of one,  either...
Ah, well.  
I could, though, easily do the Belief of the Month Club.  If a perfect  
stranger wanted to know more...well.  There we go.  
I digress...
Marlena in Missouri
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Antony Flew, a legendary British philosopher and  
atheist, has changed his mind about the existence of God in light of recent  
scientific evidence.
Flew -- a prolific author who has argued against the  existence of God and 
the claims of Christianity for more than 50 years -- first  revealed his change 
of mind in a video of a discussion with several others at  New York University 
organized by the Institute for Metascientific Research. The  video, released 
in December, is titled, "Has Science Discovered God?"  

Flew said he is now best described as a deist -- a person who believes  God 
created the universe but is not actively involved in people's lives  today.

"I don't believe in the God of any revelatory system, although I  am open to 
that," Flew said in an interview for the winter 2005 edition of  Philosophia 
Christi, the journal of the Evangelical Philosophical Society. "But  it seems 
to me that the case for ... [a] God who has the characteristics of  power and 
also intelligence is now much stronger than it ever was  before."

Flew, 81, regularly attended the Socratic Club, a weekly  religious forum led 
by famed Christian apologist C.S. Lewis while he attended  college at Oxford. 
Flew proclaimed the lack of evidence for God while teaching  at Oxford, 
Aberdeen, Keele and Reading universities in Britain. He also  published 
books and articles denouncing belief in God.

Flew  credits his newfound belief in God to arguments from design such as 
those  espoused by the "intelligent design" (ID) movement. ID argues that the 
universe  operates in such a way that it points to the existence of an 
intelligent  creator.

"I think that the most impressive arguments for God's existence  are those 
that are supported by recent scientific discoveries," Flew said. "...  I think 
the argument to Intelligent Design is enormously stronger than it was  when I 
first met it."

Although many atheists appeal to naturalistic  evolution as a method by which 
the world could have come into existence apart  from God, Charles Darwin 
himself acknowledged that the process of evolution  requires a creator to start 
the process, Flew said.

"Darwin himself, in  the fourteenth chapter of The Origin of Species, pointed 
out that his whole  argument began with a being which already possessed 
reproductive powers," Flew  said. "This is the creature the evolution of which 
truly comprehensive theory  of evolution must give some account. Darwin himself 
was well aware that he had  not produced such an account."

While Flew said he does not believe in a  God who is active in the lives of 
humans, he is "open to" the possibility of  divine revelation. He also believes 
that Christians are intellectually justified  in holding to their religion 
and that the resurrection of Jesus has more  evidential support than any other 
reported miracle in history.

"The  evidence for the resurrection is better than for claimed miracles in 
any other  religion," Flew said. "It's outstandingly different in quality and 
quantity, I  think, from the evidence offered for the occurrence of most other 
supposedly  miraculous events."

Gary Habermas, chairman of the department of  philosophy and theology at 
Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., told Baptist  Press that Flew's decision 
believe in God points to the strength of theistic  arguments.

"His conversion is a testimony to the many, especially  scientific figures, 
who are coming by way of intelligent design," said Habermas,  who conducted the 
interview with Flew in Philosophia Christi. "... The fact that  he has become 
a theist is a testimony to the type of evidence we have for God's  existence 

Flew's status as a world-famous atheist makes his  conversion to belief in 
God particularly significant, Habermas said in an  interview with Baptist Press.

"His conversion to theism is very valuable  because of his stature," Habermas 
said. "The reason this story is going around  the world is that he, not just 
anybody, but he, has converted to theism. I think  that's very significant."

Despite his belief in the existence of God,  Flew said it is unlikely that he 
will ever become a Christian. The major  evidence against the God of 
Christianity is the problem of evil, Flew  said.

The problem of evil refers to the apparent tension between the  existence of 
a good God and the presence of evil in the world.

"The  problem of evil is a problem ... for Christians," Flew said. "The 
thesis that  the universe was created and is sustained by a Being of infinite 
and  goodness is flatly incompatible with the occurrence of massive 
undeniable and  undenied evils in that universe."

Flew also argues that God does not have  "any preferences ... about or any 
intentions concerning human behavior or about  the eternal destinies of human 

Although he does not accept  Christianity, Flew emphatically denies the 
possibility that he would ever become  a follower of Islam, citing Islam's 
commitment to conquer all of its  opponents.

"I would never regard Islam with anything but horror and fear  because it is 
fundamentally committed to conquering the world for Islam," Flew  said.

Flew will present a more fully developed explanation of his  conversion to 
belief in God in a forthcoming edition of his book, "God &  Philosophy."

Earlier works by Flew include "Atheistic Humanism,"  "Darwinian Evolution," 
"A Dictionary of Philosophy," "Introduction to Western  Philosophy" and "How to 
Think Straight: An Introduction to Critical  Reasoning."


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