Should You Read Non-Catholic Materials?

10/12/2010 Comments (31)

A correspondent writes:

I am presently attending a Bible study.  During our small group discussion, a question arose from someone in our group.

We would like to know if it is wrong for us to read and examine other books and Bibles that are not Catholic-based to see what they have information-wise pertaining to spiritual matters.  For example, we both have Life Application Study Bibles and enjoy reading the associated study footnotes.

My opinion is that the Holy Spirit guides us with discernment especially when we pray before reading or delving into other Christian denomination books and Bibles.  I guard myself (my heart, mind and spirit) so that I’m not influenced in any way that could...READ MORE

Filed under bible study, books, evangelical, jacob neusner, jewish, non-catholic, pope benedict, reading, study

Nobel Committee Issues Another Ignoble Award

10/05/2010 Comments (16)

There’s an episode of The Simpsons in which Homer wins a Grammy Award, and the following dialog occurs:

Homer: Oh, why won’t anyone give me an award?

Lisa:       You won a Grammy!

Homer: I mean an award that’s worth winning.

Then a crawl line scrolls across the bottom of the screen, stating: “LEGAL DISCLAIMER:  Mr. Simpson’s opinions does not reflect those of the producers, who don’t consider the Grammy an award at all.”

That’s how I’m coming to feel about the once-noble Nobel Prize.

One of the most egregious awards they made was last year’s honoring of our president with a Nobel Peace Prize before he’d done anything. (It was awarded on his 11th day after inauguration.)

Even he...READ MORE

Filed under barack obama, dr. frankenstein's medicine show, in vitro fertilization, ivf, moral theology, nobel prize, robert edwards

Unbelievable Shock Environmental Video

10/02/2010 Comments (94)

Let me say up front that I have nothing against treating the environment in a responsible manner. It’s implied by the commission God gave mankind in Genesis 1. I also try to avoid fights about words, so whether one would call a responsible environmental position “conservationism” or “environmentalism” is a thing that does not need to be fought about.

But there is a very prominent strand in the environmental movement that takes matters to extreme and anti-human limits. In a previous post, I have referred to this position as environmental fundamentalism, to distinguish it from healthy concern for the environment.

I mean, nobody wants to make Iron Eyes Cody‘s iron eyes cry. Do they?

However...READ MORE

Filed under 10:10, carbon footprint, climate change, environementalism, environmental fundamentalism, global warming, greenpeace

Are You Smarter Than an Atheist?

09/28/2010 Comments (62)

I am.

At least according to a quiz put out by the Pew Forum on Religious and Public Life.

The quiz has 32 questions, of which atheists in America who took the quiz got an average of 20.9 questions right. American Jews got 20.5 right, American Mormons 20.3 right, American Protestants 16 right, and American Catholics 14.7 right.

I got all of them, but that’s nothing special since this is the field I work in professionally. I’m expected to know my own field. Give me a comparable quiz on another topic and watch the number plummet. I can say with great confidence that if you gave me a 32-question quiz on sports—something very large numbers of people would do very well on—I would be lucky to...READ MORE

Filed under atheism, catechesis, catholic, jew, mormon, poll, protestant, quiz, religion, religious knowledge

Go Green? No, Thanks. I Have A Religion

09/25/2010 Comments (40)

Recently over on Facebook (where you can friend me if you like), I posted an item which stated:

Jimmy Akin would like the world to know that he has heard exhortations to “Go Green”/“Be Green”/“Save the Planet” so often that using any of these phrases drastically decreases the chance he will agree to the proposal in question—whatever it is.

I figured that this would generate a good bit of reaction, and it did. In less than a day there were over 100 responses. That was even more reaction than the item I posted about the spider in Madagascar that makes webs 82 feet across or the woman who fended off a bear by hitting it with a zucchini!

A big part of the reason the item got the reaction it...READ MORE

Filed under

"Wait! I Don't Want To Die After All!"

09/15/2010 Comments (51)
Top News Network(

– Top News Network(

I’ve been thinking about writing a book to help people dealing with end-of-life situations. Between the deaths of my wife and my parents and other family members, I’ve been through enough of them that I’ve had to think hard about the spiritual, moral, and evangelistic aspects of these situations.

If I am able to write such a book, one aspect that I will definitely cover is the need for humility and caution in assessing the sick person’s will to live.

Very frequently these days people end up in situations where they cannot speak for themselves and clearly communicate what kind of care they want or whether they even want care. In such situations, family members are typically consulted, and...READ MORE

Filed under choice, culture of death, culture of life, death, dying, end of life, euthanasia, life issues, moral theology, morality

Stephen Hawking’s Cosmic Slot Machine (Part II)

09/11/2010 Comments (46)

In their new book, The Grand Design, co-authors and physicists Stephen Hawking (pictured) and Leonard Mlodinow argue that God is not necessary to explain the existence of the universe as we experience it.

Why not?

After all, if you look at the universe it looks suspiciously like it has been deliberately designed with us in mind. This is something that Harking and Mlodinow go into in some depth. They point out, as have many theistic apologists, that the laws governing our universe seem finely tuned to allow the existence of life. There are any number of constants—the gravitational constant, the mass of the proton, etc.—that are set at just the value needed to allow life to exist. If any of...READ MORE

Filed under apologetics, astronomy, atheism, constant, cosmology, design, existence of god, god, leonard mlodinow, philosophy

Stephen Hawking’s Cosmic Slot Machine (Part I)

09/11/2010 Comments (21)

I’ve read a number of books by Stephen Hawking (pictured) and Leonard Mlodinow, writing both together and separately. I’ve enjoyed them. They’re informative and funny, and they make clear some pretty deep concepts of physics and mathematics—without burdening you with a bunch of equations (that’s some trick).

But their new book The Grand Design was a disappointment.

It’s a short read, which is fine, though I was surprised when I discovered that the last 25% of the already-short book to be composed of back matter (an exotic form of matter discovered by publishers; it consists of glossaries, indexes, author bios, acknowledgements, and the like).

Despite its brevity, it does a good job...READ MORE

Filed under astronomy, atheism, constant, cosmology, design, existence of god, god, leonard mlodinow, philosophy, quantum mechanics

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About Jimmy Akin

Jimmy Akin
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Jimmy was born in Texas, grew up nominally Protestant, but at age 20 experienced a profound conversion to Christ. Planning on becoming a Protestant pastor or seminary professor, he started an intensive study of the Bible. But the more he immersed himself in Scripture the more he found to support the Catholic faith. Eventually, he entered the Catholic Church. His conversion story, "A Triumph and a Tragedy," is published in Surprised by Truth. Besides being an author, Jimmy is a Senior Apologist at Catholic Answers, a contributing editor to This Rock magazine, and a weekly guest on "Catholic Answers Live."