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The Great God Debate: The End Of The Beginning

Wednesday, June 6, 2007  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt
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The transcript of the long conversation between Christopher Hitchens and Mark Roberts is here.  The audio is here (hour 1), here (hour 2), and here (hour 3).

Dr. Roberts is beginning a series of posts on Hitchens’ book at his blog which I highly recommend to you.  Yesterday’s conversation was really just the start to the project of undoing the damage that Hitchens may have done to easily confused readers.  His appeal to the rising generation of seekers is very strong, and in need of very strong rebuttal, which is underway.

Some e-mailers have written to congratulate Dr. Roberts on his approach to the debate, others to condemn him for failing to blast away at Hitchens’ aethiesm with more volume.  Many have blasted me for not enlisting [fill in the blank] to debate Hitchens.  I am quite pleased with how it turned out, and especially what will follow next.

The “debate” with the new wave of atheists and their books is not a three hour show, but a long process of argument and counter-argument.  Hitchens’ book is at the top or near the top of best seller lists across the country.  Tens of thousands of people are reading it (maybe hundreds of thousands or millions before it runs its course). It is deeply flawed on many levels, flaws which cannot be demonstrated in total or even in large part in any broadcast setting, but broadcast settings can bait hooks, expose weak points, and indeed set up the demolition of those arguments, as will happen in full now, I suspect, in Dr. Roberts’ posts on the subject.  At the conclusion of the series, when a friend of yours raves about god Is Not Great, be sure to send him the podcasts and the links to the Roberts’ posts.  Your work will be done.  As is mine.

Do, however, arm yourself with Dr. Roberts’ new book Can We Trust The Gospels?  The answer is of course we can, and the good scholars know this, just as people of faith always have.

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