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Quantum 213 – The Illogical World and the Logical Answer

This week’s Quantum –  with the help of Supertramp, Gary Moore, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, and Stuart Townend we look at the illogicality of the world and the logical answer.  Including the War in Ukraine; Covid in Sweden;  The ABC and Illogical Bias; Sam Harris and Lying for the Truth;  Volcanoes;  Regretting Being a Slut;  Harari and ‘Unnecessary’ Humans; Christopher Hitchens on Morality;  Steve Chalke on God’s Pronouns;  and You’re the Word of God the Father…


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Catch up with Quantum here – Quantum 212 – Food, Failures and Fellowship

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  1. David, I was surprised to hear you refer to Christopher Hitchens as a great thinker. I don’t think he was, really. He was a fantastically gifted orator who knew how to play a crowd. Yet whenever he was up against a Christian equally skilled in debate (such as William Lane Craig) the weakness of his arguments was very apparent.

    For me it was funny you should devote an episode to the importance of thinking logically, because only a day ago I was growing increasingly frustrated with a member of my church who insisted that the gospel didn’t have to be logical. After much back and forth it became clear that he had no training in logic and didn’t seem to understand what it even was. He claimed that God giving us salvation as a free gift that we can’t earn was somehow illogical. I couldn’t get him to explain why (is it illogical for me to give my children gifts on their birthday?). I suspect what he really meant was “inexplicable” or similar.

    I am increasingly of the opinion that formal training in logic should be a prerequisite for anyone who wants to lead or teach within the church, whether clergy or lay.

  2. In UK there have been so many killings lately that any relative of the deceased might identify with this song :

  3. Logic is all well and good but I’m reminded of the following example. If rape seed oil comes from crushed rape seed, and olive oil comes from crushed olives, and sunflower oil comes from crushed sunflower seeds, where does baby oil come from?!?! 😉

  4. Hi David, thank you for the informative content of Quantum, it’s a good source of discussion for our time.

    I did think that Hitchens was particularly poor in his argument, and should have been challenged on his outline of the conscience. He set up a false dichotomy.

    We all have a conscience, he used other terms for it, but he admitted that the concept existed and played out both past and present. (Socrates and Smith) He even went as far as feeling sorry for those who don’t have this at play in their lives. (But did not say why)

    He then went on to say some do not have such thoughts, were deaf to that idea, who would not worry about the internal daemon or companion, who only get pleasure from being cruel, rounding up with the punchline, his issue with those who think they are created in the image of God.

    His argument fails miserably. Who says the cruel do not have such thoughts? We are not compelled to obey the conscience. Socrates was not compelled to obey his daemon. Hitchens was not compelled to obey the inner companion. Neither you nor I must obey our conscience. Nor does the unjust or cruel man or woman made in the image of God.

    He set up a false argument, that because Socrates and Hutchens obey their conscience, and many others do, that the unjust and cruel don’t have one, and if we are all made in the image of God, that is somehow irrational. (By way of inference and mockery, based on the audience laughing.)
    They fell for it.

    Why should we obey our conscience? Who is ever compelled to obey their conscience?

    Everyone of us, made in the image of God, has a choice to obey or defy our conscience. That some make that choice to reject the inner conscience, does not negate the image of God, any more than the idea those who obey the conscience do so out of self righteousness! Which is the appeal Hitchens is making.

    He is utterly wrong in the premises of his argument.
    That is not great thinking.

    Like your intro to Quantum, we question the questions, and in this case, we question the premises Hitchens uses in his argument. It’s fatally flawed.

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