Mark Tetzlaff and I are having a bone fide book duel. Read more about it here and here.
In exchange for Tetzlaff’s full reading and review of Richard Dawkins’ book, “The Greatest Show on Earth.” I’ve agreed to read — not one — but two whole books of Tetzlaff’s choice and review them.
He has chosen another book and presented to me late last night.
I will be reading “Evolution, the Grand Experiment” by Dr. Carl Werner and “Why I am a Christian” by Cornelius Van Til. As of this morning, I have ordered the books. They were not available using my the Chicago Interlibrary Loan system, so I’ve purchased them. Amazon offered the former book and I had to buy the latter book from this site.
I also bought John Loftus’ book, “Why I Became an Atheist: A Former Preacher Rejects Christianity.” Loftus recently responded on my blog, and I’ve been meaning to read the book for some time. He touts it as a book that religious studies teachers use within their classrooms as required reading. It better live up to its fanfare otherwise, I’m going to rip a new sphincter or two. I digress.
I mention Loftus’ book, because I needed to have my purchase over $25 to get free shipping as I wasn’t going to pay another $4.00 for a book like “Evolution, the Grand Experiment.”
For this little challenge, I’ve invested a total of $27.
Tetzlaff explained that he chose these books because the first one presents evolution more fairly than Dawkins’ book as it presents a more balanced view of evolution. On Amazon, you can read the first few pages (I recommend you check it out). Its pages are photo heavy. It’s seemingly more textbook-ish than the normal non-fiction read. It appears that it’s targeting schools, or maybe homeschoolers. I don’t know. I will wait to read the book personally before making any other statements about it. The second book is only 16 pages, and Tetzlaff considers it a book that will show exactly where he’s coming from.
My selfish goal is to ascertain that more and more Christians actually explore information that they deem inaccurate, untruthful or antagonistic toward their agendas. I’ve found that while I make an effort to read books from many different sources, including anti-atheist sentiment from anti-atheist authors, the least a Christian can do is read and attempt to understand opposing views, too.
A little information about Tetzlaff from a bio at his Web site:
Hello, my name is Mark. One of three brothers, I was born and grew up in Pullman, WA. I was most fortunate to have parents who were believers and communicated the gospel to me. As a result I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior when I was quite young. During the many years that have passed since that time I have become more and more thankful for what Jesus Christ did for me, and I have come to love Him more and more. Because of His great love, He gave me eternal life, unworthy as I am. However He loves you just as much and the same offer of eternal life is open to you. If you haven’t already accepted this gift, I hope you will.
Not only does Jesus Christ provide us eternal life, He invites us to have a relationship with Him. Because my relationship with Jesus Christ means so much to me, I want you to have that same opportunity. Anywhere, anytime, I can pray and know that He hears my prayers. Like a good father, He doesn’t always give me the answer I want, rather He does what is best for me. He knows me better than I know myself. Even when things aren’t going well, I know that it is for my benefit because He uses adversity and suffering to develop character in me and teach me. Did you know that you can have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ? He can be your friend who you talk to both in good times and in bad times. Belief in Jesus Christ can be the beginning of a fantastic relationship with Jesus Christ.
My pastor at Bethany Bible Church, is devoted to the study and teaching of the Bible. His Bible teaching has been invaluable to me. Because our knowledge is limited, there are many things we could not know without the Bible. It’s God’s revelation to man. It’s absolute truth. It’s our handbook to life. How else would you know who you are, why you are here and what you should do? Words do not suffice to express how much it means to me to have the Bible so that I know these things, so that I am not in the dark on these most important subjects. Don’t you also want to be enlightened by the Word of God?
Once you accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and begin to live the way the Bible commands, you will find that the Bible rings true, that the world works exactly the way the Bible says it works. You will be able to see God’s hand in your life. With every passing year, my conviction in what I believe has become ever stronger. It is my earnest prayer for you that if you do not yet know Jesus Christ, you will put your trust in Jesus Christ as your Savior. There is no firmer foundation upon which to put your trust.
So there you have it.