Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Challies on the Dawkins Delusion

Book Review - The Dawkins Delusion?

Alister McGrath - The Dawkins Delusion?Richard Dawkins’s The God Delusion is a mega-seller, having been a long-time fixture on the New York Times list of bestsellers. Easily the world’s most prominent atheist at this time, Dawkins is becoming still more popular and gaining a wider and wider voice. Just recently he has introduced his “OUT” campaign which seeks to convince atheists to come out with their beliefs and to stop hiding in shame. He is leading the charge for society to regard atheism as a valid and respectable worldview.


  1. I read both "The Dawkins Delusion" and "Dawkins' God" by McGrath.

    McGrath strikes me as a pseudo-theistic evolutionist, and surprisingly unassertive when it comes to theology. It may be the typical understatement approach from English gentlemen, but I do not think that McGrath goes far enough in either of his works to really tear up Dawkins.

    For me, he skirts around the edges of really dismantling Dawkins. In that respect, I think it shows that McGrath is qualified as a scientist and theologian, but not strong in Christian philosophy. He attempts to meet Dawkins in the middle, and then move towards Christianity from there. This quote, from The Dawkins Delusion, demonstrates that:"We are both Oxford academics who love the natural sciences. Both of us believe passionately in evidence-based thinking..."

    In general I think presuppositionalists will be disappointed with McGrath. If you want to read a scientific refutation of Dawkins science, then read "Dawkins God". "The Dawkins Delusion" left me a little disappointed, maybe because I read much more convincing and destructive criticisms of the work elsewhere.

  2. I have also been somewhat disappointed in McGrath - he is very weak on the sovereignty of God and the weakness of this position is evident in the earlier post on this site of the dialog between him and Dawkins.

  3. JD, yes, you have hit the nail on the head. McGrath is curiously weak on the power of God. I would actually like to read one of his theological publications and see more. I think he is contemporary Anglican, which would explain his more "open theist" approach.