Episode 127: Is God a Bully
Is God a Vindictive Bully? is a new book by Paul Copan. It asks a relevant question, a question on a lot of people’s minds.
When people look at the world around them and then read the Christian Scriptures, they don’t know what to make of the main character. How do we understand the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob?
Or to borrow Paul’s phrase, aka, “God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ”.
So is God a Bully?
Is he a genocidal maniac as some new atheists claim? Is the Bible mistaken when it portrays God in a severe light, as some critics within say?
The subtitle tells the rest of the story: “Reconciling Portrayals of God in the Old and New Testaments.”
Paul Copan, our guest, thinks it is possible to reconcile those portrayals but not eliminate the tensions.
Who is Paul Copan?
Dr. Paul Copan, (PhD, Marquette University), is uniquely qualified to address this question.
He is a Christian theologian, analytic philosopher, and apologist.
He serves as the Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics at Palm Beach Atlantic University in West Palm Beach, Florida.
For six years, he served as president of the Evangelical Philosophical Society.
Copan is the author or editor of more than 40 books, including Is God a Moral Monster?; True for You, But Not for Me; That’s Just Your Interpretation; When God Goes to Starbucks; and A Little Book for New Philosophers.
Scholars review Is God a Bully?
Here is what a prominent Old Testament scholar has to say about the book.
“People are inclined to think that the Old Testament God is like the Taliban and the New Testament God is a comfort animal.
Dr. Copan takes on that kind of view with passion. I can’t imagine that there are any misapprehensions about the Scriptures, particularly about the Old Testament, that aren’t covered by this book.
You may not agree with everything in Dr. Copan’s study, but you will be dazzled by the range of issues he covers and the range of material he offers.”
—John Goldingay, Fuller Theological Seminary (emeritus)
Watch more from Paul Copan when he participated in the panel discussion with John Warwick Montgomery here.
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