The Tentative Apologist https://randalrauser.com Home of progressively evangelical, generously orthodox, rigorously analytic, revolutionary Christian thinking (that's what I'm aiming for anyway) Tue, 13 Nov 2018 14:26:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.8 Home of progressively evangelical, generously orthodox, rigorously analytic, revolutionary Christian thinking (that's what I'm aiming for anyway) The Tentative Apologist clean The Tentative Apologist randal.rauser@taylor-edu.ca randal.rauser@taylor-edu.ca (The Tentative Apologist) Home of progressively evangelical, generously orthodox, rigorously analytic, revolutionary Christian thinking (that's what I'm aiming for anyway) The Tentative Apologist http://randalrauser.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/RRauser_Podcast-iTunes-graphic4.jpg https://randalrauser.com 101. Atheism vs. Christianity with Adam Lee and Andrew Murtagh https://randalrauser.com/2018/04/101-atheism-vs-christianity-with-adam-lee-and-andrew-murtagh/ Tue, 17 Apr 2018 12:39:48 +0000 https://randalrauser.com/?p=23247 https://randalrauser.com/2018/04/101-atheism-vs-christianity-with-adam-lee-and-andrew-murtagh/#respond https://randalrauser.com/2018/04/101-atheism-vs-christianity-with-adam-lee-and-andrew-murtagh/feed/ 0 <p>This time on The Tentative Apologist Podcast I’m delighted to introduce two guests, Andrew Murtagh and Adam Lee. Andrew is […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2018/04/101-atheism-vs-christianity-with-adam-lee-and-andrew-murtagh/">101. Atheism vs. Christianity with Adam Lee and Andrew Murtagh</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p>

This time on The Tentative Apologist Podcast I’m delighted to introduce two guests, Andrew Murtagh and Adam Lee. Andrew is a Christian apologist who blogs at Soapbox Redemption on the Patheos platform. He is also the author of the 2013 book Proof of Divine.

Adam Lee is an atheist and writer living in New York. He has written articles for Alternet, Salon, Free Inquiry among other sources and he regularly blogs at Daylight Atheism also on Patheos. Adam is also the author of the 2012 book Daylight Atheism. And how’s this for an interesting factoid: one of Adam’s articles was referenced positively in Richard Dawkins bestselling book The God Delusion.

Some years ago Andrew and Adam developed an unlikely friendship which led to them coauthor a book of dialogue and debate titled Meta: On God, the Big Questions, and the Just City. Meta is a lively book which presents a conversational exchange on life’s biggest questions. But it does so while retaining a friendly, irenic spirit, one which is all too rare in this age of loud voices and hardened opinions.

There are two things I really appreciate about Andrew and Adam. The first is the above-mentioned commitment to generous and friendly conversation despite some formidable ideological differences. The second is their concern to find unity in concrete ways, particular with a commitment to joint work on social justice, specifically to end human trafficking.

If I may give a personal example, my own blog is the site of debate between atheists and Christians and we sponsor a lending team at Kiva, a micro-lending agency. And this is our slogan:

We loan because…
Debating the existence of God and the meaning of life means little if you don’t lend a helping hand to those in need. (Psst, you can join us here!)

That is a point on which Andrew, Adam, and I all surely agree. So on that note of agreement, we can turn to our wide-ranging discussion.

You can order a copy of Meta here.

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This time on The Tentative Apologist Podcast I’m delighted to introduce two guests, Andrew Murtagh and Adam Lee. Andrew is […] This time on The Tentative Apologist Podcast I’m delighted to introduce two guests, Andrew Murtagh and Adam Lee. Andrew is […] The Tentative Apologist clean
100. Evolution and Christian Faith: A Conversation with Denis Lamoureux https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/100-evolution-and-christian-faith-a-conversation-with-denis-lamoureux/ Fri, 24 Nov 2017 04:31:27 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=22358 https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/100-evolution-and-christian-faith-a-conversation-with-denis-lamoureux/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/100-evolution-and-christian-faith-a-conversation-with-denis-lamoureux/feed/ 3 <p>It’s hard to believe but it has been four 1/2 years since The Tentative Apologist Podcast was launched in May 2013. […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/100-evolution-and-christian-faith-a-conversation-with-denis-lamoureux/">100. Evolution and Christian Faith: A Conversation with Denis Lamoureux</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p>

It’s hard to believe but it has been four 1/2 years since The Tentative Apologist Podcast was launched in May 2013. Since then a lot of water has flowed under that bridge. Now for this, our 100th episode, I invite my first guest, Dr. Denis Lamoureux, back to continue our conversation on evolution, the Bible, and Christian faith. (You can listen to that first episode, dubious production values and all, right here.)

Dr. Lamoureux is Associate Professor of Science and Religion at St. Joseph’s College, at the University of Alberta. He is the author of many academic journal articles as well as several books including Evolutionary Creation: A Christian Approach to Evolution, and I Love Jesus and I Accept Evolution. In this episode, our conversation is guided by Dr. Lamoureux’ latest book, Evolution: Scripture and Nature Say Yes!

And here’s the really good news. In celebration of our 100th episode, Dr. Lamoureux has kindly donated three autographed copies of his new book. If you live in North America, you are eligible to win a copy. All you need to do is email me (you can contact me through my website) or tweet me (@RandalRauser) by November 30th. We will have a drawing to identify the three winners on December 1st.

And while we can’t give everyone a free book, we do have something just as good: a free course. You see, Dr. Lamoureux is currently offering a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) through the University of Alberta. “Science & Religion 101” is free and open to all who are interested, so follow the link and register for the course.

And now without further ado, let’s turn to our conversation.

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It’s hard to believe but it has been four 1/2 years since The Tentative Apologist Podcast was launched in May 2013. […] It’s hard to believe but it has been four 1/2 years since The Tentative Apologist Podcast was launched in May 2013. […] The Tentative Apologist clean 46:00
99. How do you hear the voice of God? https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/99-hear-voice-god/ Thu, 09 Nov 2017 00:12:06 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=22280 https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/99-hear-voice-god/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/99-hear-voice-god/feed/ 14 <p>There are few questions as basic and important as this: how do you hear the voice of God? How do […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/99-hear-voice-god/">99. How do you hear the voice of God?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p>

Randal Rauser (that’s me!)

There are few questions as basic and important as this: how do you hear the voice of God? How do you discern God’s will for your life? How does one seek divine guidance in the day to day?

Is divine guidance a matter of hearing a literal voice from heaven? Or is it simply a matter of baptizing our own decisions with a nod to the divine? Or something else?

In this episode of The Tentative Apologist Podcast I share my perspective on this topic which I delivered at a recent youth conference. Inspired by the admirable concision of TED Talks, the conference stipulated that speakers should limit their topic to a 15 or 16 minute time slot. So no words are wasted!

And now, without further ado, let’s turn to the matter of hearing the voice of God.

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There are few questions as basic and important as this: how do you hear the voice of God? How do […] There are few questions as basic and important as this: how do you hear the voice of God? How do […] The Tentative Apologist clean 19:54
98. That All May Be One: An Ecumenical Conversation for Reformation Day https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/98-may-one-ecumenical-conversation-reformation-day/ Wed, 01 Nov 2017 16:49:30 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=22244 https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/98-may-one-ecumenical-conversation-reformation-day/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/98-may-one-ecumenical-conversation-reformation-day/feed/ 4 <p>One suspects that October 31, 1517 dawned much like any other in the region of Saxony. And when an Augustinian […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/11/98-may-one-ecumenical-conversation-reformation-day/">98. That All May Be One: An Ecumenical Conversation for Reformation Day</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p>

Julien Hammond

One suspects that October 31, 1517 dawned much like any other in the region of Saxony. And when an Augustinian monk named Martin Luther hammered up 95 theses for public debate, he could not have imagined that his action would be the catalyst for a schism within Christendom, one whose repercussions would be felt for centuries. And yet, here we are, five hundred years later, still dealing with the deeply ambiguous legacy of the Reformation.

On the one hand, had there been no Reformation there would be no Baptists, and I rather like being Baptist. Indeed, I believe being Baptist is a vocational call I have to a wider Christendom and the world. So the fact that I have this call and that Baptists exist is a fact for which I have gratitude.

On the other hand, had there been no Reformation, there would have been no schism, no fracture down the heart of the Church. Very likely there would have been no Thirty Years War, no long history of mutual hatred and misunderstanding across emerging denominational divides.

As I said, the legacy is ambiguous, and my response to it is thus rather ambivalent. Is there a way that Protestants and Catholics can recognize and celebrate our differences whilst moving some distance toward healing that schism and recognizing our common faith and identity as the body of Christ?

With that lofty goal in mind, in this episode of The Tentative Apologist Podcast we mark the Reformation by way of a conversation with Dr. Julien Hammond. Dr. Hammond is the Ecumenical and Interreligious Officer for the Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton and a sessional instructor at St. Joseph’s College, the University of Alberta with a specialty in religious education. His passions include lay education in the Church and ecumenical dialogue across denominational lines in emulation of Christ’s prayer “that all may be one” (John 17:21). And that prayer serves as the theme for this commemoration of Reformation Day.

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One suspects that October 31, 1517 dawned much like any other in the region of Saxony. And when an Augustinian […] One suspects that October 31, 1517 dawned much like any other in the region of Saxony. And when an Augustinian […] The Tentative Apologist clean 32:07
The Storymen Podcast on What’s So Confusing About Grace? https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/storymen-podcast-whats-confusing-grace/ Fri, 20 Oct 2017 21:47:34 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=22175 https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/storymen-podcast-whats-confusing-grace/#respond https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/storymen-podcast-whats-confusing-grace/feed/ 0 <p>This week I was pleased to be a guest yet again on one of my favorite podcasts, The Storymen Podcast, […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/storymen-podcast-whats-confusing-grace/">The Storymen Podcast on <i>What’s So Confusing About Grace?</i></a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p> This week I was pleased to be a guest yet again on one of my favorite podcasts, The Storymen Podcast, with JR. Forasteros, Matt Mikalatos, and Clay Morgan. The interview is a foray through evangelical Christianity, grace, salvation, and a healthy dose of pop culture. You can visit the podcast below.

The StoryMen Podcast

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This week I was pleased to be a guest yet again on one of my favorite podcasts, The Storymen Podcast, […] This week I was pleased to be a guest yet again on one of my favorite podcasts, The Storymen Podcast, […] The Tentative Apologist clean 50:56
97. Redemption and Omar Khadr https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/97-redemption-omar-khadr/ Fri, 13 Oct 2017 22:26:21 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=22108 https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/97-redemption-omar-khadr/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/97-redemption-omar-khadr/feed/ 3 <p>The story of Omar Khadr is inextricably interwoven with that of Canadian identity in a post 9/11 world. For years his […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/10/97-redemption-omar-khadr/">97. Redemption and Omar Khadr</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p>

Omar Khadr

The story of Omar Khadr is inextricably interwoven with that of Canadian identity in a post 9/11 world. For years his story occupied national headlines, often polarizing a nation as it embodied concerns about security and terrorism, Islam and the clash of civilizations, punishment and the promise of redemption.

As a public narrative, Omar’s story begins in 2002 when he was working as a 15 year old with Taliban soldiers in Afghanistan. On July 27, he was seriously wounded in a fight with American soldiers after which he was sent to Guantanamo Bay. While in confinement at Guantanamo, Khadr, a Canadian citizen, pleaded guilty to killing U.S. soldier Sergeant Christopher Speer in the firefight.

In 2010 the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the Canadian government’s interrogation of Khadr had violated “the most basic Canadian standards of the treatment of detained youth suspects…” Finally, after ten years in Guantanamo Khadr was returned to Canada and later released from prison. After suing the Canadian government for violations under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian government settled out of court in 2017 for a payment of $10.5 million along with an apology on behalf of the government.

Professor Roy Berkenbosch

For much of his unlikely journey, Khadr has been supported by the faculty and students of King’s University in Edmonton, Alberta. And in this episode of The Tentative Apologist Podcast I sit down with Roy Berkenbosch of King’s to discuss Khadr’s case and the complex theological, ethical, and social implications that it raises.

Professor Berkenbosch is Director at the Micah Centre and Interdisciplinary Professor at King’s University where he has taught since 1995. Previously he lived and worked in Bangladesh for several years and he continues to advocate on a number of important topics including global poverty, the status of indigenous peoples within Canada, and the complex case of Omar Khadr.

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The story of Omar Khadr is inextricably interwoven with that of Canadian identity in a post 9/11 world. For years his […] The story of Omar Khadr is inextricably interwoven with that of Canadian identity in a post 9/11 world. For years his […] The Tentative Apologist clean 31:56
What’s So Confusing About Grace? My Interview with Bob Dutko https://randalrauser.com/2017/08/whats-confusing-grace-interview-bob-dutko/ Wed, 23 Aug 2017 22:06:13 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=21844 https://randalrauser.com/2017/08/whats-confusing-grace-interview-bob-dutko/#respond https://randalrauser.com/2017/08/whats-confusing-grace-interview-bob-dutko/feed/ 0 <p>I’ve been on The Bob Dutko Show several times now. In this twenty minute interview we talk about the theme […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/08/whats-confusing-grace-interview-bob-dutko/">What’s So Confusing About Grace? My Interview with Bob Dutko</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p> I’ve been on The Bob Dutko Show several times now. In this twenty minute interview we talk about the theme of my new book, What’s So Confusing About Grace?

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I’ve been on The Bob Dutko Show several times now. In this twenty minute interview we talk about the theme […] I’ve been on The Bob Dutko Show several times now. In this twenty minute interview we talk about the theme […] The Tentative Apologist clean 19:57
Learning to Speak in Tongues: A Pentecost Sermon https://randalrauser.com/2017/06/learning-speak-tongues-pentecost-sermon/ Wed, 07 Jun 2017 23:18:21 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=21454 https://randalrauser.com/2017/06/learning-speak-tongues-pentecost-sermon/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/06/learning-speak-tongues-pentecost-sermon/feed/ 14 <p>Ever wondered how to speak in tongues? Hey, born and raised in the Pentecostal Church, I should know. And what […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/06/learning-speak-tongues-pentecost-sermon/">Learning to Speak in Tongues: A Pentecost Sermon</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p> Ever wondered how to speak in tongues? Hey, born and raised in the Pentecostal Church, I should know. And what better day to share my secret than on Pentecost Sunday? This is a sermon I preached at Lendrum Mennonite Church in Edmonton, AB on Pentecost Sunday 2017. It ain’t exactly “covfefe”, but as Trump would say, “Enjoy!”

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Ever wondered how to speak in tongues? Hey, born and raised in the Pentecostal Church, I should know. And what […] Ever wondered how to speak in tongues? Hey, born and raised in the Pentecostal Church, I should know. And what […] The Tentative Apologist clean
Does Faith Make Sense? A Sermon on Christianity and Evidence https://randalrauser.com/2017/05/faith-make-sense-sermon-christianity-evidence/ Mon, 01 May 2017 13:07:24 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=21254 https://randalrauser.com/2017/05/faith-make-sense-sermon-christianity-evidence/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/05/faith-make-sense-sermon-christianity-evidence/feed/ 18 <p>This is a sermon I preached yesterday at McKernan Baptist Church in Edmonton as part of their “Questions from the […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/05/faith-make-sense-sermon-christianity-evidence/">Does Faith Make Sense? A Sermon on Christianity and Evidence</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p> This is a sermon I preached yesterday at McKernan Baptist Church in Edmonton as part of their “Questions from the Neighborhood?” series. At the beginning I note that the most common objection I’ve encountered toward Christianity concerns the problem of evil. But the second most common objection is that Christianity demands faith at the expense of evidence, that it commends blind assent rather than careful reason. Hence the question, Does faith make sense?

In response, I point out that on the contrary, Christianity is based on evidence right back to the life and ministry of Jesus and his earlier followers. They were always concerned to ground faith — that is, trust — in the right kind of evidence. And so should we.

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This is a sermon I preached yesterday at McKernan Baptist Church in Edmonton as part of their “Questions from the […] This is a sermon I preached yesterday at McKernan Baptist Church in Edmonton as part of their “Questions from the […] The Tentative Apologist clean
Rauser v. Schieber-The 2017 Debate https://randalrauser.com/2017/03/rauser-v-schieber-2017-debate/ Wed, 15 Mar 2017 11:49:20 +0000 http://randalrauser.com/?p=21011 https://randalrauser.com/2017/03/rauser-v-schieber-2017-debate/#comments https://randalrauser.com/2017/03/rauser-v-schieber-2017-debate/feed/ 10 <p>On Friday, March 10th I met Justin Bieber Schieber for our second public debate. (The first one unfolded exactly two […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com/2017/03/rauser-v-schieber-2017-debate/">Rauser v. Schieber-The 2017 Debate</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://randalrauser.com">Randal Rauser</a>.</p> On Friday, March 10th I met Justin Bieber Schieber for our second public debate. (The first one unfolded exactly two years ago on the campus of the University of Alberta. You can watch that match-up here.)

This second debate occurred at Stencel Hall on the campus of Taylor Seminary in Edmonton. It also differed from our first encounter in that it was a semi-formal exchange. There was no precisely articulated debate resolution, anal time-keeper, or formally timed rebuttals and closing statements. Instead, we went from opening statements of approximately fifteen minutes where we each presented arguments for our respective views (theism; atheism). Then we went immediately to a half hour of informal cross-examination. And finally we turned to audience questions.

Schieber doing his opening statement. (Psst, I’m that handsome guy sitting in the front row underneath the cross.)

Personally, I much prefer this approach. If the full-on formal debate is a pinched three piece suit, this semi-formal approach is a blazer and a relaxed button-down shirt: no tie required.

I have included the full audio for the debate below. Schieber included PowerPoint which, as you can probably guess, is unfortunately not visible in audio form. That’s why I included the picture above so that you can get a good sense of his PowerPoint presentation. 🙂

As for me, I didn’t have any PowerPoint. 🙁 But I did include a handout to go with my opening statement which I have included below:

Two Moral Arguments for Theism (Handout)

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On Friday, March 10th I met Justin Bieber Schieber for our second public debate. (The first one unfolded exactly two […] On Friday, March 10th I met Justin Bieber Schieber for our second public debate. (The first one unfolded exactly two […] The Tentative Apologist clean