WIBA: A Unique One-Of-A-Kind Book

I was re-reading my book, Why I Became an Atheist: A Former Preacher Rejects Christianity, yesterday.As I was doing so I was very impressed with it. I know this sounds egotistical but that's exactly what I thought. Maybe I shouldn't say what I think, right? If you're considering whether to get and read it, let me tell a few things to help you decide. I'll tell you about its strengths and weaknesses. Ready. Set. Go.

This book is my magnum opus. It's to be considered an anti-apologetics textbook opposed to the many Christian apologetics textbooks out there. Apologetics books cover a range of issues in defense of Christianity. So does mine in criticizing Christianity. In it I cover nearly all of the key issues in separate chapters. I offer a cumulative case argument, one where each chapter adds something to my case. I separate the book into two large loosely connected sections. I deal with arguments that have force to them from outsiders first, then I turn to arguments that should persuade even insiders, like it did for me. I also share my own personal story in it, making the book as comprehensive as 536 pages will allow. It is a densely packed book, complete with so many references I couldn't do the indexes or a complete bibliography, lest the added pages cause the price to be too high.

Just as good Christian apologetics books are written to be used in apologetics classes, so also I wrote my book on that same level. I specifically had the budding apologist student in mind as I was writing it. These are people who aspire to being apologists and know something about the material. Just as Christian apologetics textbooks contain chapters introducing a variety of subjects, even though whole books have been written on each of these subjects, so mine does the same thing. Just as they reference other scholarly books and essays for further reading, so mine does the same thing. Actually, there are issues I discuss that most Christian apologetics textbooks never do.

When it comes to comparable atheist books there are none. I am sure I would say this even if I didn't write it. Most all other atheist books focus on single issues, are written for the professional scholar, and/or written for the masses (and as such, don't really challenge Christians on the university level). Dan Barker and Guy Harrison's excellent books are similar to mine though. Like my book they treat Christian beliefs respectfully too.

Several of the strengths of my book are also its weakness. It's densely packed with a plethora of arguments, containing little illustrative material. Most of the masses will not be able to follow several of my arguments. It's a huge monster of a book that places it beyond what most people care to wade through. There are other weaknesses. It contains an unflattering personal story. Then too, for atheists who don't think Jesus ever existed they might not understand that I grant this in order to reach across the great divide of ours. For atheists who think all we need to do is to ask Christians to produce the evidence, my book will seem superfluous and unnecessary. I have no real expertise in science, nor do I consider myself a biblical scholar or a philosopher. I was trained as an apologist, someone who was a generalist. If I have a focus, a specialty, it's in defending the Outsider Test for Faith better than anyone else, which this book introduces. Since no one can have an in-depth scholarly understanding of the wide range of subjects I treat in my book, I also know there are a few things in it Christians and atheists could nitpick about it, and they do. Keep in mind that it's easier to smell a rotten egg than it is to lay a good one. When nitpicking it to death ask yourself if you could do better, and if so then do it.

In any case, I'm grateful for people who have read it and who recommend it to the appropriate people. As I said, even if I hadn't written it I'm sure I would recommend it highly.