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The Predicament of BeliefScience, Philosophy, and Faith$
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Philip Clayton and Steven Knapp

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199695270

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199695270.001.0001

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Reasons for doubt

Reasons for doubt

(p.1) 1 Reasons for doubt
The Predicament of Belief

Philip Clayton

Steven Knapp

Oxford University Press

The book begins with an honest look at the modern predicament for faith. Christianity is based on the belief that behind all things there exists an ultimate reality that in some sense intended us to be here and that desires our flourishing. Yet the contemporary world presents numerous reasons to doubt many of the traditional Christian claims. Five in particular provide the focus for this book. Science challenges claims for miracles and supernatural entities as well as the reasons that Christians give for their beliefs; the existence of evil and suffering appear inconsistent with the nature of God as Christians conceive it; religious pluralism makes it harder to claim that one religion is right and all the rest wrong; the historical evidence for the accuracy of the biblical documents is mixed at best; and Christianity rests on the claim that Jesus was resurrected from the dead, which is certainly a historically controversial claim. The following chapters will wrestle with these challenges.

Keywords:   doubt, science, supernaturalism, problem of evil, religious pluralism, historicity of the gospels, resurrection

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