Thursday, December 13, 2007

Book Review: Can Man Live Without God?

I'm home sick today with an ear infection. So you know what that means, lots of time to blog! A couple weeks ago I finished this book by Ravi Zacharias. I have also read "Jesus Among Other Gods" by the author, and his CD of a lecture series entitled "Why I Am Not an Atheist" really affected me in a positive way.

This book is very much a synthesis of Zacharias' lectures, built mostly upon those delivered at Harvard. There is a section at the end with actual dialogstranscriptions from audience-posed questions. So if you listen to his podcasts or are familiar with any of his audio lectures, then you will already be privy to the material.

In terms of format, the book is very conversational and is divided into three sections:
“Antitheism is Alive—and Deadly,” deals with issues such as God’s existence, ethics, evil, and death. “What Gives Life Meaning?”, investigates man’s relationship to God, and the nature of truth, knowledge, and love. The third section, “Who Is Jesus (and Why Does It Matter?),” compares Jesus’ truth claims with those of other religions. from review here"
Ravi is very much an analytical, logical thinker and his style lends itself to scholarly credibility while at the same time not writing from such a cold and detached posture that it alienates anyone outside academia. His critiques are formed by taking antitheism to its fullest logical conclusions and then juxtaposing those against existential problems that arise. For example, from page 140:
Two contemporary cosmologists make the terrifying comment, "Ultimately it is not human beings that are important, it's DNA." From those words one may infer that prejudice is not personal, it is merely an aversion for certain DNAs. Is this not the inevitable slide of an antitheistic view of man, even though counterintuitively and in practical terms such a bizarre conclusion is incongruent with life itself, where personal love and concerns outweigh all other considerations? Can we just reduce people to chemicals?
We can look at any one of the major tragedies going on in the world right now and if antitheism is true, no body should care because there is no point anyway- after all, we're just DNA.

Ravi is huge on worldview and I believe he is right when he looks at four questions that every worldview must answer: Questions of origin, meaning, morality, and destiny. Great author, great book, great discussion opportunities within a local community.

Ravi Zacharias official website

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