Deconversion stories from The Skeptical Review
A book recommendation...
Like you, I too was once a devoted Christian fundamentalist. My Christian conversion in 1970 led me to forsake a very successful business career, become an ordained minister, found and pastor a prosperous evangelical, Pentecostal church, plus preaching at pastor seminars in Africa, and ministering in churches in Yugoslavia, England, Sweden, Canada, and the U.S.
When I resigned from the pastoral duties of my church in 1986, I had no intention of ever leaving the faith. However, in about 1990 I came across a book that got me thinking. This book was called Bible of Bibles by Kelsey Graves. This book challenged my confidence in the so-called infallibility of the Bible. Later I read Losing Faith in Faith by Dan Barker. This book by a former Pentecostal minister mirrored my personal experiences and made me confront myself with the fact that I was no longer a believer. Then somehow I became a subscriber to The Skeptical Review. Little by little over the years, the light has broken through and the shackles of religion have finally fallen off. I want to thank you for your contribution to my deliverance as well as, I'm sure, to many others'.
If I may, I'd like to recommend a book to you and your readers that I discovered in late 1997. This book is The True Origins of Christianity and the Bible by Andrew Benson. This book is not specifically about atheism nor does it tell the reader what to believe. The author very tactfully lays out the facts for the reader to judge. This book is so thorough that when completed the reader is faced with the fact that there is no rational basis for believing in the god of Judaism/Christianity. It is refreshingly "reader friendly" and is the perfect book to recommend to our Jewish/Christian friends.
Here is the comment of the Rev. Dr. Culver H. Nelson, Senior Editor of The Fourth R, publication of the Westar Institute and the Jesus Seminar: "Mr. Benson has produced a wide-ranging and exciting search into what he calls The True Origins of Christianity and the Bible. It is historically honest, astonishingly thorough, and gives evidence of the towering gifts of a non-academic in a field usually enthralled to the credentialed. Benson is devoted to the truth. This book deserves wide distribution."
This book we have found amongst the Minnesota Atheists is equipping the atheist community with a book that enables us to do more then just "preach to the choir." It presents the historical facts assimilated from the research of some 200+ scholars (mostly Christian) referenced with 1,000+ footnotes. I strongly urge you to advertise it. This book is one of a kind! It dramatically impacted my life, as well as other atheists here in Minnesota. Benson's website is http://www.prudentialpublishing.com.
If you would like, I can contact the author, and he will be glad to mail you a copy for your review and comment.
Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Needless to say, I'm happy to hear that I may have had something to do with Mr. Salisbury's abandonment of religious superstition. I am now reading the book he recommended but haven't had time to read enough to form an opinion. If the book is as good as Mr. Salisbury claims, I'll say more about it later.
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