Author(s): Randal Rauser
The question of God is simply too important--and too interesting--to leave to angry polemicists. That is the premise of this friendly, straightforward, and rigorous dialogue between Christian theologian Randal Rauser and atheist Justin Schieber. Setting aside the formality of the traditional debate, the authors invite the reader to join them in an extended, informal conversation. This has the advantage of easing readers into thorny topics that in a debate setting can easily become confusing or difficult to follow. Like any good conversation, this one involves provocative arguments, amusing anecdotes, and some lively banter. Rauser and Schieber begin with the question of why debates about God still matter. They then delve into a number of important topics: the place of reason and faith, the radically different concepts of God in various cultures, morality and its traditional connection with religious beliefs, the problem of a universe that is overwhelmingly hostile to life as we know it, mathematical truths and what they may or may not say about the existence of God, the challenge of suffering and evil to belief in God, and more. Refreshingly upbeat and amicable throughout, this stimulating conversation between two friends from opposing points of view is an ideal introduction to a perennial topic of debate.
Imagine sitting at a table in your local bar or coffee shop and overhearing two smart, energetic, and creative thinkers go at it over the existence of the Jewish/Christian/Islamic god. Thanks to Rauser and Schieber, we don t have to imagine: this book is that debate. Anyone who enjoys a hard-hitting but classy philosophical dustup will love this fun and informative book. Guy P. Harrison, author of 50 Simple Questions for Every Christian and 50 Reasons People Give for Believing in a God Fun, thoughtful, and surprising, An Atheist and a Christian Walk into a Bar is a title after my own heart. In the setting of a neighborhood pub, Randal Rauser and Justin Schieber engage in passionate, thoughtful, and this is key civil conversation on the enduring question of whether or not God exists and why that matters. Grab a cup of coffee or a favorite pint and buckle up, because these two know their stuff, and in these pages you ll find yourself reexamining what you thought you believed or didn t believe about God. Bryan Berghoef, author of Pub Theology: Beer, Conversation, and God Schieber and Rauser offer something sadly too rare: a civil, respectful, and reasonable dialogue over the question of the existence of god. At a time when theists and atheists usually just lob rhetorical bombs at each other over a figurative DMZ, that s a rather refreshing thing, regardless of which side you come down on. Ed Brayton, writer at Dispatches from the Culture Wars and 2009 recipient of the Friend of Darwin Award from the National Center for Science Education A refreshing book with perfect sparring partners! Schieber and Rauserinsightfully refute bad arguments related to atheism and also highlight issues that need more attention within the popular debate over God's existence. Trent Horn, author of Answering Atheism An Atheist and a Christian Walk into a Bar should launch a genre.It s a book that balances accessibility, rigor, and probing creativity, and it has the potential to bring into the mainstream the sophistication and constructive insight of academic philosophy of religion something often sorely missing from the preachers and polemicists who hog most of the attention in the theism/atheism debate. Daniel Fincke, founder and primary writer of philosophy blog Camels with Hammers"
Randal Rauser is Professor of Historical Theology at Taylor Seminary in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada where he has taught since 2003. He lectures widely on the topics of apologetics and Christian worldview. Dr. Rauser is the author or coauthor of nine books including The Swedish Atheist, the Scuba Diver, and Other Apologetic Rabbit Trails and Theology in Search of Foundations. Dr. Rauser also regularly blogs and podcasts as The Tentative Apologist at randalrauser.com. Justin Schieber is founder and host of Real Atheology, a Youtube channel dedicated to presenting issues in contemporary philosophy of religion in easy-to-follow videos. As former cohost of the Reasonable Doubts Radio Show and Podcast (2011-2015), Justin enjoys promoting a friendly, yet firm, skepticism toward religious claims. He lectures on the philosophical arguments for and against the existence of God and has participated in many public debates at colleges and universities throughout the United States and Canada. He served on the board of the Grand Rapids chapter of the Center for Inquiry in 2014 and 2015.