Over the course of about 2 months, Justin Schieber and I engaged in a formal written debate on the Problem of Evil. After reading a short blog post I wrote some time ago on why bad things happen to good people, Justin suggested a formal debate for his podcast listeners. Deciding it was time I got my feet wet in the debating arena, I obliged and now we’re here!
We each had up to 7 days to issue our responses/rebuttals. The debate itself moves a bit fast at points; I highly recommend downloading the transcript and working through it (more on that below).
Justin Schieber was raised a Christian but failed to maintain his faith beyond his teenage years. Justin is now a philosophically-minded atheist with an empathy for those with whom he disagrees. Justin is former co-host of the Reasonable Doubts Podcast and current co-host of the Real Atheology Podcast which explores the rich landscape of contemporary academic philosophy of religion from an atheistic perspective. Justin has participated in many public debates throughout the United States and Canada on subjects within philosophy of religion. December 2016 saw the publication of An Atheist and a Christian Walk into a Bar, a conversational exploration on the merits of theism co-authored with Canadian theologian Randal Rauser and published through Prometheus Books.
Cameron Bertuzzi is a professional photographer and the founder of Capturing Christianity, a ministry aimed at exposing the intellectual side of Christianity. Shortly after learning of his brother’s conversion to atheism, he set out to discover the rational basis for Christian truth claims. During this discovery period, he learned that, in addition to there being good reasons for God’s existence, Christianity has an incredibly rich intellectual heritage. Cameron is a writer, speaker, and he uses his ministry to host discussions and interviews on topics related to Christian Apologetics. He is married to a beautiful wife and is the father of two adorable children.
The format of the debate was 15 minute openings, 10 minute rebuttals, and 8 minute closings. We each had up to seven days to issue our responses, ask for clarification, etc. It was originally written and later performed for the August 28th, 2017 episode of the Real Atheology Podcast, available here. I’ve included the audio from the debate below as well. Listen however you prefer.
In addition to listening, I highly recommend working through the transcript (which is itself about 30 pages of content). Written/orated debates like this are great, they allow for a great deal of substance, but they can be a bit fast and even overwhelming in a purely oral format. Unlike listeners, we each had days to process what was said and formulate responses.
For that reason, I’ve included the transcript of the debate for free to subscribers to our newsletter. If you aren’t a subscriber, you may subscribe at the top of the website, or at the footer. It’s pretty hard to miss. Just enter your email address when prompted. Once you verify your email, you’ll be sent a confirmation email that includes a direct download link.
As always, comments and feedback are greatly appreciated!