Mark D. Roberts

Mark D. Roberts

Debating with Atheists? There’s an App for You

posted by Mark D. Roberts

fact-facts-app-5.jpgAn article in yesterday’s New York Times caught my eye: “You Say God is Dead? There’s an App for That.” The article describes the proliferation of PDA apps that are meant to help people debate religious truth.

On the atheist side, we have the Bible Thumper iPhone app that supplies skeptics with verses from the Bible that tend to make believers stumble. For believers, there are apps such as Fast Facts, which supplies data for Christians who need to defend the existence of truth or the uniqueness of the Bible or dozens of other similar claims. (Hey, maybe that would have helped me in my marathon three-hour debate with Christopher Hitchens! Well . . . probably not.)

So, what do you think? Is this helpful? Unhelpful? Silly? Just another way for people to make a buck? Or . . . ?

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posted July 3, 2010 at 5:33 pm

Here’s what I wrote on my facebook page:
Ugh, just what we need, technologically amped animosity. Here’s a really radical idea. How about we makes friends with people who are different than us and we respectfully listen to them?

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Mark D. Roberts

posted July 3, 2010 at 6:14 pm

Irenicum (nice name!) – Ooooh, I don’t know. That whole relationship thing is pretty risky. Sounds like, well, hmmmm, Jesus.

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Joe M.

posted July 4, 2010 at 2:15 am

No brainer: Anything that will help the Christian to “always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you” is worthwhile.
Of course, it’s no substitute for study or genuine friendship and compassion for the lost, but if it helps to make the truth of Christ known, there’s no reason to knock it.
There is too much mis-information about the Bible and Christianity out there already, some of it helping the unbeliever feel pretty smug in their ignorance and the foolishness of Christians. For example, I’ve attached the url for a YouTube clip from a Penn & Teller episode titled “The Bible is BS”. While I love Penn – I really think he’s a honest and sincere guy – he’s an atheist, and he’s just wrong about the Bible. Proverbs tells us to “Answer a fool according to his folly, or he will be wise in his own eyes”, and if this little app helps provide a wise and timely answer, then go for it!

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posted July 4, 2010 at 7:38 am

Now what we need is an automation app that lets the two apps debate each other without human intervention! Then technology will finally free us from something tedious.

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posted July 4, 2010 at 11:17 am

Speaking as a mainline Christian, I find conservative evangelical types and atheists and atheists alike are often misinformed about the Bible based on their own wooden, literalist hermeneutic. And both sides get angry with me when I point that out.;-) C’est la vie.

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Joe M.

posted July 4, 2010 at 12:31 pm

Of course, LutheranChik, as you made your points, I’d counter them one by one – if I only had my trusty app for reference……..doh!

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