Thursday, January 28, 2016

Welcome to the New Skeptical Review

                                              The New Skeptical Review

With this opening blog post, I'd like to welcome everyone to The New Skeptical Review. The purpose of this blog is to continue the work began by the late Farrell Till. Mr. Till was a Church-of-Christ preacher who, after many years of intensely studying the Bible, came to believe that the Bible was a flawed book, containing many errors, absurdities, failed prophecies, discrepancies, and other flaws. After having worked as an English instructor at Spoon River College, he went onto retire and started a publication titled The Skeptical Review. It started as a printed publication but later became a website. Many articles from the printed edition now appear on The Skeptical Review's website. Till even posted his own story of how he went from a preacher in Chuches of Christ to being a Bible skeptic.

Unfortunately, Mr. Till died on October 3, 2012. There are probably man more articles he wanted to write and publish but probably never got around to doing it. The world lost a valuable voice of reason as well as champion for freethought and biblical skepticism. This blog was started to honor his legacy and carry on his work. Honest and informed biblical criticism is needed more than ever and there are many people out there who need to be educated because they have been indoctrinated, and even brainwashed by religious propaganda. This blog exists as an antidote to religious propaganda, particularly doctrinal nonsense like biblical inerrancy.

Please note as you read these blog entries that I am not (yet) a biblical scholar. I have, however, spent years reading the works of biblical scholars and I have done my best to educate myself on biblical scholarship. I am confident that the information that I post on this blog is backed up by critical Bible scholarship and I am confident that anyone who takes the time to read these posts can independently verify for themselves that the information in these blog posts is accurate. Now this blog is primarily devoted to biblical inerrancy although, from time to time, other topics such as popular arguments in Christian apologetics will be addressed. Not all holy books will be scrutinized on this blog. Given that conservative Christianity seems to be the predominant religious faith in America, this blog will be devoted mostly to critiquing conservative Christianity.

This blog will allow comments. If you wish to leave any feedback to this blog, please be a registered user and please try to be civil. Rude, nasty, and abusive commentary will generally not be allowed. I realize that when posting on controversial topics, people can lose their cool and sometimes lash out. That is fine as long as people lashing out apologize. I appreciate people at least trying to be civil. However, if you want to be a jerk and enjoy being one, you will simply have to find another blog because cruel and disrespectful commentary will not be tolerated after the offenders have been fairly warned. Again, I realize that sometimes we get rubbed the wrong way, sometimes we have bad days, and sometimes people just push our buttons.

Finally, I hope that this blog will serve as an educational tool. If a believer, especially a conservative Christian, reads the posts on here and still believes despite being challenged to look at their beliefs critically, that's fine. I have more respect for people who open their Bibles and other books and try to read carefully and critically than people who blindly believe whatever a preacher may say and read books like the Bible very selectively. If this blog can help at least one person see through the folly of believing that the Bible is the "inspired", "inerrant", and "infallible word of God", I will consider this endeavor well worth undertaking. I don't mind conservative Christians becoming more liberal believers after reading.


Robert Engersoll

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