The Benefit of the Doubt

A blog about Dialogue, Doubts, and Christian Faith ~Travis Dickinson~

Please stop saying “Faith is belief without evidence”

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Is Atheism a belief? Last week, my post, entitled “Please stop saying ‘Atheism is not a belief’” generated a lot of discussion on various online discussion groups. A number of atheists took issue with me telling them what they believe and (sometimes kindly) suggested that I stop saying that. Fair enough. If you, the atheist, […]

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Please stop saying “Atheism is not a belief”

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A lack of belief It’s become excruciatingly predictable for atheists who operate on a pop level to clarify that atheism, for them, is not a belief. It is, as they say, a lack of belief. They will point out that there is a difference between saying “I believe there is no God” (which is a […]

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Richard Swinburne and the inevitability of doubt

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Not long ago, Richard Swinburne was asked whether he ever doubts the truthfulness of Christianity. Who is Richard Swinburne? Swinburne, by most accounts, is THE top philosopher of religion in the world and much of his work centers on defending Christian theism. Virtually all of his writing is scholarly, but his contribution to the discussion […]

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Eugene Peterson and the difficulty of message

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Two days ago, an article was published declaring Eugene Peterson had come to affirm same-sex issues and marriage. Then there was the blow up. Eugene Peterson is an iconic luminary type of figure for many Christians and this affirmation was either a big problem or a reason for celebration depending, of course, where one stood […]

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The Gospel is the Biggest Idea I Know: True Myth

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Many unbelievers have claimed that the gospel, as an idea, is ridiculous. And I kind of agree. It’s a REALLY big idea. In fact, it’s the biggest idea I know. The Christian version of mere theism alone is a big idea. The idea is there is a transcendent God who is the greatest conceivable being […]

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You need community (including those who disagree)

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Christianity was never meant to be lived in isolation. Though there are ways in which Christianity concerns the individual (e.g., each of us must choose this day whom we will serve), the call has always been a call to community. The need for community is especially pronounced when it comes to grappling with the deep […]

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The Pursuit of God: Being okay with unanswered questions

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(This is part 4 of a multipart series: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3) Part of the pursuit of God, I have argued, should be an intellectual pursuit where we ask the deep and difficult questions *because* we want to know God more fully. I’ve suggested that this is (or should be) a very normal […]

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Pursuing God Intellectually: Make friends with Christians of old

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(This is part 3 of a multipart series: Part 1, Part 2) I’ve suggested that we understand our call to love God with our minds (Matt. 22:37) as a call to pursue God intellectually. This pursuit, I say, is analogous to (though importantly different from) the way in which we pursue any person we love. In […]

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Pursuing God intellectually: Being honest about our questions

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In my last post, I gave an invitation to pursue God intellectually. Jesus identified the greatest commandment as loving God with our all of who we are, and Jesus specifically included loving God with our minds. But what does this mean? I suggested that we understand this as pursuing God intellectually in a way that […]

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An invitation to the intellectual pursuit of God

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“Love the Lord your God with…all your mind” ~Jesus The Command to Love Jesus commands us to love God with all of who we are—our hearts, souls and minds (Matt. 22:37). One might find this as a command problematic since love isn’t the sort of thing we can turn on or off. When something is […]

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