Atheists on the Run from William Lane Craig

by James White

It is pretty amazing when a story like this makes it to Fox News: Christian Philosopher William Lane Craig Is Ready to Debate, but Finds Few Challengers. I have been watching the coverage of the upcoming UK tour of WLC and the fact that Richard Dawkins, like most atheists I’ve met, is far more comfortable with monologues than dialogues. They tend to be very brave amongst their own, or behind a keyboard, but they are significantly less excited about serious challenges to their worldview and their rhetoric. Dawkins, in particular, is so far out of his element (and way beyond his depth) in dealing with philosophy or theology or history—and he well knows it—that he knows a meaningful debate with a prepared opponent would diminish his following (and his readership). Dawkins’ comments are the classic self-defensive actions of someone who knows he is in trouble: “I have no intention of assisting Craig in his relentless drive for self-promotion.” Yes, Dawkins could never be accused of self-promotion. The humor is not even lost on the Brits!
I found it particularly ironic that the Fox News story interviewed David Silverman, the current President of American Atheists (he was VP when I debated him on Long Island). He is quoted as saying,

But David Silverman, president of the American Atheists, believes the reason behind the cancellation is much simpler.
“The fact is some people get tired of debating Christians because of the same arguments over and over again. And sometimes it’s a lot like arguing with a wall,” he said.

Yes, I am sure that is why Mr. Silverman expressed interest in debating me on the topic of whether Jesus was a made up story, drawn from pagan sources? I think anyone watching our debate would conclude that Mr. Silverman was not arguing with a wall. If so, that wall sure seemed to stump him multiple times.
I think it is quite proper for Christians, especially those in the UK, to point to the cowardice of many of the leading atheists in the face of challenges. If this opens up possibilities for dialogue in that very secular nation, that’s wonderful. But there is another aspect to this particular situation that I find interesting…

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Atheists on the Run from William Lane Craig

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