Showing posts with label John Beversluis. Show all posts
Showing posts with label John Beversluis. Show all posts

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 6

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). This is chapter 6, his last chapter on John the Baptist.

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 5:2

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). This is part 2 of 2 parts of his fifth chapter on the virgin birth narratives. I would disagree with Beversluis that Jesus was good moral person who offered good moral advice, but he was influenced by Thomas Paine and Jefferson's writings. [On this issue see Dr. David Madison's excellent newly dropped book!]




John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 5:1

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). In this fifth chapter Beversluis writes about the birth of Jesus. This is part 1 of 2 parts. I've highlighted a few gems from him.

CHAPTER FOUR: A PREGNANT VIRGIN:

Matthew and Luke are the only Gospels that record the birth of Jesus (Matthew 2:1-23 and Luke 2:1-19). Mark says nothing about it and starts his Gospel thirty years later with the appearance of John the Baptist on the scene. The Gospel of John is, as always, a case unto itself. It starts with a famous (and Hellenistically flavored) passage about “the Word” (logos) that existed “in the beginning” and goes on to say that this Word was not only with God, but was God (John 1:1). The only allusion to the birth of Jesus is the subsequent remark that this Word “was made flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:11)—a remark that is so oblique that anybody unfamiliar with Matthew and Luke would never guess John was talking about the same person whose birth they record in their Gospels. John has no interest in the so-called “baby Jesus.” He sees his birth in cosmic metaphysical terms—as the incarnation of a pre-existing celestial Logos who not only was God, but who also the Creator of universe (“All things were made by him; and without him was not made anything that was made” (1:3). This heavy-duty (and stoically-influenced philosophical) terminology is completely foreign to Matthew and Luke who are comparative lowbrows concerned only with various factual details about the story.

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 4

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). In this chapter Beversluis makes mincemeat of the characters in the Nativity Narratives as being confused and/or irrational if we take the story as historical truth. I've highlighted a few gems from him.

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 3

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). Here is chapter three on "The Genealogies of Matthew and Luke." Do not skip this chapter! It's the most thorough taken-down of the inconsistent, inaccurate, absurd genealogies you will find. It deserves to be studied! I highlighted a few awesome statements of his.

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 2

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). Here is chapter two. As you will read, John conclusively shows that the gospels were not written by eyewitnesses. This alone destroys the credibility of Christianity and its miracle claims due to the fact that miracles, by definition, require more than mere hearsay testimonial evidence.

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 1:2

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). The first chapter is the largest one by far at 10,809 words! It was sent to me in two parts so I mistakenly thought I had seven chapters.

There are five parts to it: 1. New Testament Criticism; 2. The Inspiration and Inerrancy of the Bible; 3. Verbal and Plenary Inspiration: A Semantic Nightmare; 4. What Inspiration Guarantees and Does Not Guarantee; and 5. Back to Thomas Paine. In this installment I'm posting parts 4-5. The "contemporary defenders" he criticizes are Norman Geisler and Josh McDowell.

John Beversluis, "The Gospel According to Whom? A Nonbeliever Looks at The New Testament and its Contemporary Defenders" 1:1

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I'm posthumously posting six chapters from an unfinished book sent to me for comment in 2008 by the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). The first chapter is the largest one by far at 10,809 words! It was sent to me in two parts so I mistakenly thought I had seven chapters.

There are five parts to it: 1. New Testament Criticism; 2. The Inspiration and Inerrancy of the Bible; 3. Verbal and Plenary Inspiration: A Semantic Nightmare; 4. What Inspiration Guarantees and Does Not Guarantee; and 5. Back to Thomas Paine. In this installment I'm posting parts 1-3. The "contemporary defenders" he criticizes are Norman Geisler and Josh McDowell.

John Beversluis Required One Textbook in the Philosophy of Religion for 42 Years!

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I'm posthumously posting a few chapters from the late John Beversluis (see Tag below). As I was re-reading his first chapter I found a gem from him on teaching philosophy of religion students. Which book had he recommended to them for 42 years? This one!
If you use Thomas Paines's The Age of Reason as a required textbook in a Philosophy of Religion course, as I have done for many years, your students will not eagerly devour its contents and shower you with tears of gratitude for providing them with this eye-opening experience of what is really in the book they revere as the inspired Word of God. Nor will they be shamed by the astonishingly detailed knowledge of both the Old and New Testaments that Paine and Jefferson possessed. On the contrary, when such students are required to read The Age of Reason and to discuss it in class, they become (by degrees) irritated, belligerent, and finally downright angry. Inter-Varsity and Campus Crusade for Christ types are the most vocal and the most argumentative. I welcome (and even solicit) their objections. Having heard them out, my response is always the same: “I didn’t write The Age of Reason; Thomas Paine did. Is he wrong? Did he misrepresent what the Bible says? I don’t think so. But don’t take my word for it. Go home and read your own Bibles. Check him out. If you can find a single passage that he has misquoted or manufactured or misinterpreted, write an essay in which you convincingly demonstrate his error(s) and I will give you a grade of “A” for the course and urge you to submit your essay for publication in a reputable philosophical or religious journal with my enthusiastic recommendation.” I have been teaching philosophy for 42 years and during that time no Paine-incensed student has ever submitted such an essay. The reason is clear: The Age of Reason is accurate and his documentation is irrefutable.

Preface and Introduction to "The Gospel According to Whom?" by Dr. John Beversluis

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[See the Tag below for my introduction to these series of posts]. When I looked again at the book files that the late John Beversluis sent me in 2008, he included a Preface, an Introduction, and not six but seven chapters. Here for the first time are his Preface and Introduction. What he wrote is as good as I remembered! It's also more timely today than it was thirteen years ago.

John Beversluis Has Died at the Age of 86, But He Will Speak from the Grave!

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John Beversluis was 86 years old when he recently died. His life was lived between these two days, November 10, 1934 and May 22, 2021. From his obituary we read:
John received his Ph.D from Indiana University and his Bachelor of Arts from Calvin College. He taught Philosophy and Ethics at Butler University (Indianapolis, IN), Emory University (Atlanta, GA), California State University, Fresno, Clovis Community College, Monterey Peninsula College, the University of the South (Sewanee, TN), and Grand Valley State College (Allendale MI). He participated in three National Endowment for the Humanities seminars for College Teachers: at the University of Illinois (Urbana, IL), the University of California at Berkeley, and the University of Texas. He presented papers at the American Philosophical Association, various universities in the United States, and at Oxford and Cambridge in the United Kingdom. While at Oxford he also presented several papers to the Oxford C. S. Lewis Society. His publications include works in the areas of Ancient Greek Philosophy (focusing on Socrates and Plato), the Philosophy of Religion, Kantian Ethics, and Philosophy and Literature. SOURCE.

In 2008 I got to know John in an exchange of emails. I had contacted him about his masterful book, C.S. Lewis and the Search for Rational Religion: Revised and Updated, which had just been published by Prometheus Books (PB) on November 29, 2007. I had bought it and loved it. Let me tell you this interesting story.