2-Minute Christianity

2-Minute Christianity

2-Minute Christianity is aimed at open-minded Christians who think that if Christianity is true, it can stand a little critique. Take off the training wheels with this approachable introduction to the debate about the truth of Christianity. Fifty short episodes introduce arguments for and against Christianity, the surprising things the Bible actually says, the plot holes in familiar stories, and the evolution of belief documented in the Bible itself. Find out what they didn’t teach you in Sunday school. With this video series you will become more knowledgeable about Christianity than most of the world’s Christians. You may find these ideas provocative or startling, but you won’t find them boring. If God wanted mindless faith, he wouldn’t have given you a mind. These are fifty big ideas every Christian should understand. Take the journey and see where it leads you.

Episodes

May 26, 2022 2 mins

2-Minute Christianity is a project aimed at open-minded Christians who think that if Christianity is true, it can stand a little critique.

Mark as Played

Religion claims to answer life’s Big Questions, but look at a map of world religions. Buddhism has one set of answers, Islam another, and Christianity another. Religious answers vary by location. By contrast, there is no map of world science. A compelling new theory will peacefully sweep through the scientific academy in a couple of decades.

More: https://2minutechristianity.com

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The Noah flood story works as mythology, not history. The ark would have been impossible to build, it couldn’t have held all the animals, the carnivores had nothing to eat, the flood would have killed the fish and plants, animals couldn’t have walked from distant regions to the Middle East and back again, and more.

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Saul Steinberg’s famous “View of the World from 9th Avenue” takes the same nearsighted view of the world as the Bible does. The Bible’s cartoonish view of the world makes sense coming from an Iron Age culture, not the omniscient creator of the universe.

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A first-century steam-powered toy invented in the Roman Empire could have started the Industrial Revolution, but it didn’t. Europe was soon largely controlled by Christianity, and yet there was no flowering of technical innovation. Nor a flowering of social improvement. The Industrial Revolution and the end of slavery were 1500 years away because Christianity had little interest in encouraging science and technology to improve soci...

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The New Testament gives many ways Jesus healed—he expelled demons, he said that sickness comes from sin, he used potions and powerful words, and he cured by touch. Two things stand out: these healings were based on the folk medicine of the time, not science, and the amount of healing Jesus did was unimpressive. Modern medicine, based on science, heals much more than Jesus. 

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This popular Christian argument sees God in innate human desires: we hunger and there’s food; we thirst and there is water; we yearn for the supernatural so there must be God. But this is backwards. We don’t notice hunger and conclude that food exists; instead, animals need food, and evolution selects those that can find it.

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Psalm 22 is a popular place to see an Old Testament prophecy of Jesus, but the parallels with the gospels could easily have been added by New Testament authors. And when we read the entire psalm, we find passages with no parallels in the gospel story.

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The venerable Ontological Argument tries to imagine God into existence, but it fails on a number of points. Like many arguments, it’s effective because it’s perplexing, not because it’s correct.

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The Garden of Eden story is widely accepted as history, but it has plot holes. One moral infraction (before Adam and Eve even had moral knowledge) was hardly justification to punish all future generations. Surprisingly, the Bible agrees, but there goes any justification for Original Sin.

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The medieval mappa mundi (“world map”) was a popular type of map that mixed history and science with mythology and Christianity. That this, and not an accurate map or encyclopedia, captured the imagination shows how Christianity, even when it had power, had no motivation to improve the lives of its followers.

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Christian apologists say that this passage looks like a creed developed just a few years after Jesus’s death.

Possible, but by the same logic, it could’ve been added to copies of Paul’s letter decades later. And if this is a creed, it’s just a faith statement and not an argument. Even if this suggests belief in the resurrection was early, it doesn’t argue that it was a historical event.

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Christianity claims to answer the Big Questions: Why are we here? or What is the purpose of life? or What happens after we die?

Yes, Christianity has answers, but where’s the evidence backing them up? Contrast with Science—it can’t answer everything, but when it does have answers, they’re worth listening to.

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The Design Argument sees a designer behind the complexity in DNA, but mere complexity doesn’t demand design. Designers follow a small number of guidelines—a design might need to optimize strength, minimize weight, be fast, and so on. One trait you’ll never see in a design is deliberate junk, but you find plenty of that in DNA. The Design Argument fails.

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During the American Civil War, the Southern pastors had the stronger slavery argument. American slavery had indentured servitude (temporary slavery) and slavery for life, and so did slavery in the Bible. God even set the rules.

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This seems like a trivial omission from the Bible, but it illustrates how the Bible provided no new science or technology. Soap is easy to make and, combined with basic principles of hygiene, it would have improved the lives of ancient Israelites. This illustrates how improving lives apparently wasn’t God’s goal.

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Many Christian apologists make historical arguments for Christianity: we have thousands of New Testament manuscripts, there was a small time gap from Jesus’s death to the original gospels, there was a small gap from original to our oldest copies, and so on. But if you find those truly compelling arguments, you should become a Mormon, since Mormonism handily beats Christianity’s record on every point.

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Is something good because God says so, or does God say so because it’s good? One way, morality is arbitrary and God could’ve made it something else. The other way, God isn’t the source of morality but is simply reporting to us. Neither makes God look good.

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Where can objective morality come from without God? The first problem is proving that objective morality exists since nothing needs objective morality to explain it. Answering questions of morality, purpose, and meaning then becomes like Dorothy’s ruby slippers—we’ve had the ability to find our versions of these all along.

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This argument states: Whatever begins to exist has a cause; the universe began to exist; therefore, the universe has a cause (God). But this argument doesn’t withstand a serious critique.

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