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Quote of the Day: The Problem With Evangelical Apologetics

As a field, apologetics bears quite a few problems. It’s actually not easy to say exactly which might be its worst. But I see this one as a big problem: apologists’ processes never actually land where apologists insist they do. Almost every apologetics argument can be negated right out of the gate through the identification of its logical fallacies, manipulation attempts, or basic cognitive biases. Of the few remaining, they don’t whisk us away to the Happy Realm of Jesus-is-Real. Instead, apologists land themselves in the Iffy Realm of SOMEONE-Might-Be-Real and then simply declare they’ve reached their destination.

In the past, I’ve called this the Unicorn Test: any given apologetics argument not knocked out of the running through illogical reasoning accidentally demonstrates the validity of not just Jesus, but also of Santa Claus, Zeus, Space Princess Cassidy, Thor, Wonder Woman, leprechauns, Harry Potter, the state of Wyoming, and Russell’s Teapot. Substituting other names for “Jesus” in their arguments reveals the truth.

Christians have a really tough time moving from the claim that gods are not, in the main, logically ridiculous to demonstrating that their particular god simply must exist–while simultaneously demonstrating that these thousands of other deities absolutely do not. Apologists take as a given that once they demonstrate that gods in general might exist, they’ve already conclusively demonstrated those other points–and thus clinched their sale.

— Captain Cassidy, Roll to Disbelieve, Christian Evangelists Keep Asking the Wrong Question, October 10, 2019


  1. Avatar
    Brunetto Latini

    As someone who was into apologetics in my youth, let me say that the author’s approach to bashing apologetics as a thing rather than refuting the specifics of apologetic arguments is worthless, except for sounding intelligent to those who never believed.

    • Avatar
      Bruce Gerencser

      She spends time in other posts refuting Evangelical apologetical arguments. The reason I liked this excerpt is that it exposes THE truth about Evangelical apologetics: their arguments might lead one to conclude that there is some sort of God, but they miserably fail in moving their arguments from A God to THE God.

  2. Avatar

    I like Captain Cassidy’s blog. I usually read her articles, which are very down to earth, and speak in ordinary, common sense, terms. My only objection, and it’s not a criticism as it’s up to readers and bloggers to decide how they arrange comments, is that there are so many comments from what is clearly a regular ‘gang’ that it’s extremely hard to find meaningful conversation. The first hundred comments are clearly ‘in group’ things that mean nothing to outsiders.

    As for the apologetics, well it’s all they’ve got. In the real world we have science. Science makes predictions but, until we have empirical evidence of something, we cannot know things for sure. For example, in the early years as steam trains were being invented, scientists calculated that above 28mph air would be sucked from carriages and passengers would therefore suffocate. The science was perfectly sound, it appeared, but then along came reality and the ‘theory’ was found to be wrong. Apologetics can never be tested in this way because there’s nothing to test.

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Bruce Gerencser