...it is fascinating to observe the level of hubris, simple personal self-deception and arrogance, that defines Richard Dawkins as a human being who has dedicated his every moment of existence to his leadership of, and membership in, τῶν τὴν ἀλήθειαν ἐν ἀδικίᾳ κατεχόντων, those who suppress the truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18). Dawkins' published works have been juvenile in their philosophical, historical, and biblical errors, yet, being a "scientist" overshadows all of that, of course. Hence, he will not debate the very people who would be able to expose his numerous errors. Behold the creature in denial of his Creator:
Wintery Knight provides the following very useful information and critique:
Let’s re-cap Dawkins’ reasons in point form: (with my comments in parentheses)
- Dawkins claims that he is willing to debate high-ranking clergymen (but Craig is a scholar, not a clergyman)
- Dawkins claims that Craig is a creationist (but Craig supports his kalam cosmological argument with the Big Bang)
- Dawkins claims that Craig’s only claim to fame is that he is a professional debater (but see Craig’s CV and publications below, which is far more prestigious than Dawkins)
- Dawkins claims that he’s too busy (busy cowering in fear hugging his Darwin doll for comfort)
Let’s review William Lane Craig’s qualifications:
William Lane Craig is Research Professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology in La Mirada, California.
Dr. Craig pursued his undergraduate studies at Wheaton College (B.A. 1971) and graduate studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (M.A. 1974; M.A. 1975), the University of Birmingham (England) (Ph.D. 1977), and the University of Munich (Germany) (D.Theol. 1984). From 1980-86 he taught Philosophy of Religion at Trinity… In 1987 they moved to Brussels, Belgium, where Dr. Craig pursued research at the University of Louvain until assuming his position at Talbot in 1994.
He has authored or edited over thirty books, including The Kalam Cosmological Argument; Assessing the New Testament Evidence for the Historicity of the Resurrection of Jesus; Divine Foreknowledge and Human Freedom; Theism, Atheism and Big Bang Cosmology; and God, Time and Eternity, as well as over a hundred articles in professional journals of philosophy and theology, including The Journal of Philosophy, New Testament Studies, Journal for the Study of the New Testament, American Philosophical Quarterly, Philosophical Studies, Philosophy, and British Journal for Philosophy of Science.
Craig’s CV is here.
Craig’s list of publications is here.
Here are some of Craig’s most recent publications:
- Ed. with Quentin Smith. Einstein, Relativity, and Absolute Simultaneity. Routledge Studies in Contemporary Philosophy. London: Routledge, 2007, 302 pp.
- “Theistic Critiques of Atheism.” In The Cambridge Companion to Atheism, pp. 69-85. Ed. M. Martin. Cambridge Companions to Philosophy. Cambridge University Press, 2007.
- “The Metaphysics of Special Relativity: Three Views.” In Einstein, Relativity, and Absolute Simultaneity, pp. 11-49. Ed. Wm. L. Craig and Quentin Smith. Routledge Studies in Contemporary Philosophy. London: Routledge, 2007.
- “Creation and Divine Action.” In The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Religion, pp. 318-28. Ed. Chad Meister and Paul Copan. London: Routledge, 2007.
- God and Ethics: A Contemporary Debate. With Paul Kurtz. Ed. Nathan King and Robert Garcia. With responses by Louise Antony, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, John Hare, Donald Hubin, Stephen Layman, Mark Murphy, and Richard Swinburne. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2008.
- “Time, Eternity, and Eschatology.” In The Oxford Handbook on Eschatology, pp. 596-613. Ed. J. Walls. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008.
- Ed. with J. P. Moreland. Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology. Oxford: Blackwell.
- “The Kalam Cosmological Argument.” With James Sinclair. In Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology. Ed. Wm. L. Craig and J. P. Moreland. Oxford: Blackwell.
- “In Defense of Theistic Arguments.” In The Future of Atheism: Alister McGrath and Daniel Dennett in Dialogue. Ed. Robert Stewart. Philadelphia: Fortress Press.
- “The Cosmological Argument.” In Philosophy of Religion: Classic and Contemporary Issues. Ed. Paul Copan and Chad Meister. Cambridge: Blackwell.
- “Cosmological Argument”; “Middle Knowledge.” In The Cambridge Dictionary of Christian Theology. Ed. G. Fergusson et al. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- “Divine Eternity.” In Oxford Handbook of Philosophical Theology. Ed. Thomas Flint and Michael Rea. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Richard Dawkins is eminently qualified to debate uninformed clergymen, but he has too much at stake (in terms of book royalties) to disappoint his loyal horde of foam-flecked fundies by debating a professional scholar who has debated hundreds of times, against the top non-Christian scholars, in hundreds of universities, including Harvard, Cambridge and Oxford.
See that debate up there with Daniel Dennett? You can listen to Craig’s response to Daniel Dennett here. Or you can watch Craig’s debate with Christopher Hitchens. Then you’ll know why Dawkins soils his knickers at the thought of facing Craig in a public debate.
What are the real reasons why he won’t debate Craig?
I can think of three reasons why Dawkins would avoid a debate with Craig:
- He doesn’t know how to defend atheism and disprove theism in public
- He doesn’t have the intellectual capacity to understand logic and study evidence
- He doesn’t want to debate a real scholar and be humiliated in public, like Hitchens and Dennett
My opinion is that he is guilty of all 3 of these.
If you are an atheist, you should be ashamed to be represented by a LAZY, IGNORANT COWARD like Richard Dawkins.
(END OF WINTERY KNIGHT)
In addition, TurretinFan, also of Alpha and Omega Ministries, contributed the following rejoinder:
Recall that Dawkins' original comment was: "... and I don't take on people whose only claim to fame is that they are professional debaters. They gotta have something more than that, I'm busy." (Whether his busy schedule was due to grammar or finishing school was not specified.) I myself have similar standards, thus:
1. I do not race people whose only claim to fame is that they are professional runners;
2. I do not play chess against people whose only claim to fame is that they are chess masters;
3. I do not play one-on-one with people whose only claim to fame is that they are basketball stars;
4. I do not set my car against people whose only claim to fame is that they have a fast car; and
5. I do not attempt to match the accomplishments of folks whose only claim to fame is that they are in the Guinness Book of World Records ®.
After all, they have to have something more than that, I'm busy.
In fact, I vastly prefer to race people who are famous for eating, to play chess against people who are famous for boxing, to play one-on-one basketball with people who are famous for chess, and to try to match the accomplishments of people who generally aren't outstanding in the particular field of endeavor in which I'm engaged.
So I can understand why Dawkins would prefer to debate men who have ecclesiastical rank that is unrelated to debating skill (bishops, archbishops, and especially cardinals) rather than someone who is actually famous for debate. After all, who has time for sure defeat? We're busy!
(END OF TURRETINFAN)