AyameTanPosts: 75Joined: Tue Mar 08, 2011 6:18 am Gender: Male
I finally got around to reviewing this eloquent response to CS Lewis. It's often heavy reading at the start of each chapter, but it's always accessible by the end of each chapter.
http://www.amazon.com/review/R1FVSUFQUS ... hisHelpful
"Leaves no Stone Unturned. Dry at Times, but Always Incisive and Intelligently Argued
CS Lewis has been lauded as the premier Christian apologist of the 20th century by priests, bishops and many Christian apologists even today. Outside his clique of fawning sycophants, however, he is often regarded as shallow, vapid and unconvincing, although most agree that Lewis was an expert rhetorician and erudite wordsmith.
In this second edition, Beversluis expertly ripostes the major rebuttals by Christians who have been quick to leap to Lewis' defense. Having not read the original work, I cannot make any comparisons. Having said that, I will say that Beversluis does an exemplary job at exposing Lewis' hollow arguments for what they are. Mere Christianity and Miracles are two of the primary targets. Most people who take a critical eye to MC will be frustrated and disillusioned when the "best" case Lewis can offer for Jesus' divinity is the Liar/Lunatic/Fiend dilemma. Not only does this presuppose that Jesus was a good moral teacher (the fig tree incident and breaking the 5th and 8th commandments), but it also assumes that the historical claims made in the gospels are accurate. They aren't. They weren't even made by people who lived around the time of Jesus' estimated lifetime.
The Argument from Reason (in a nutshell, if consciousness evolved, then we can't trust our brains, so it must have a supernatural source) is shown for the lemon it is. That Alvin Plantinga and more recently Sye Ten Bruggencate and Eric Hovind are using it is something that should be more than enough to make Lewis spin in his grave.
The Problem of Pain is given its own chapter, and in it Beversluis contrasts the Platonist view (god only commands what is moral) with the Ockhamist view (whatever god decrees is moral, even if he sends all Christians to hell and all atheists to heaven) of morality. Many readers will notice that they are the two responses to the Euthyphro Dilemma, articulated by Plato. Beversluis expertly exposes Lewis' god with Lewis' own arguments. Any reasonable person must conclude that CS Lewis worships a paternalistic tyrant who treats humans as pawns in an effort to convert more Christians and bring more people to him. And no matter what misery, torments and sufferings are inflicted or apathetically ignored in service of this goal, everything is "justified" in the mind of Lewis since god is infallible and can do no wrong. It ALMOST makes me celebrate when I imagine Lewis' in the abyss of grief brought about by the death of his wife."
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