Saturday, September 28, 2013

J.P. Holding's Review and Critique of The Case Against The Case For Christ by Robert M. Price

While there are some things to be wary about regarding J.P. Holding's apologetics (especially his earlier works and activity), the following is a link to his thought provoking review of Robert M. Price's book The Case Against The Case For Christ. It's a book which many skeptics love to refer to when trying to debunk Christianity. Price's book is itself a critique of Lee Strobel's book The Case For Christ. Holding was given the name "James Patrick Holding" at birth. When he was an infant, his name was legally changed to "Robert Turkel". Holding used his birth name as a pseudonym online, before formally changing his name to his birth name in July 2007.

The Price of Playing with a Bulldog by J.P Holding

Here's a link to an audio of a lecture by Holding on the "Christ Myth" hypothesis:

I [Richard Carrier] still find many of his [Robert Price's] claims under-documented and his arguments often weaker than they need to be, his methods are often a cipher, and he is bad at clarifying (e.g. he will defend many different mutually-contradictory theories without explaining what we are supposed to conclude from the fact that he does that, such as whether he thinks they are all equally likely or whether he thinks some are more likely than others but that all are more likely than historicity, or if he even thinks they are more likely than historicity rather than only just as likely or unlikely but likely enough to be uncertain of historicity, etc.; and that’s not the only confusion Price will lead you into, it’s just the one that I often notice the most). He also never thoroughly defends a single coherent theory of Christian origins, making him a moving target for critics (contrast with Doherty, who does a generally good job at this, and is the best mythicist to read, although he still stubbornly falls short of dissertation quality argumentation and just complains when I say that rather than trying to work out how to formulate and document arguments in a way that would pass a fair peer review–such as learning to stop crowding strong arguments with weak arguments, and instead drop the weak arguments and just shore up the strong arguments).

I [Bart Ehrman] should say that one of the things that struck me, quite forcefully, in the aftermath of the publication of the book, was just how virulent, mean-spirited, and militant some atheists can be. The hate-mail and hate-response that I received for this book from the far left was absolutely as vehement as the hate-mail and hate-response that I have received for other books from the far right. It’s not easy being a historian, wanting simply to know what happened in the past, when so many have so many vested interests in having things their own way. Many of the mythicists are simply fundamentalists of a different stripe. Or so I’ve experienced!

See also the resources at the following links:
Christian CADRE


Book Reviews of Recent Atheist Authors by Christian Apologists

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