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The Atheist Who Didn't Exist

4.22  ·  Rating Details ·  189 Ratings  ·  53 Reviews
The intention of this book is to reveal the vacuity of some of the more popular sound bites about the Christian faith, so that we can clear the space for a deeper and more honest discussion about the big questions of life.
Paperback, 238 pages
Published July 27th 2015 by Monarch Books (first published July 17th 2015)
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Chuck Unfortunately, reason and logic is not the same thing as objective truth. What is reasonable and logical has become subjective opinion. "It's…moreUnfortunately, reason and logic is not the same thing as objective truth. What is reasonable and logical has become subjective opinion. "It's 'scientific' if I say it is and if you disagree, you are ignorant and self delusional."
It would nice if we could sit down and discuss these life changing matters over a caramel macchiato, but inevitably someone starts yelling.(less)

Community Reviews

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Sep 11, 2015 James rated it really liked it
Shelves: apologetics
I like Christian apologetics book as much as the next guy which means not a whole lot. I do like the idea of them. A reasoned, rational defense of Christian truth is a great idea--something that answers questions and addresses difficulties can be very helpful. But let's be honest, most apologetic works suffer from some serious defects. A few are overly simple and don't really offer more than trite answers to tough questions. Some books are just dry and boring. Rare is an apologetics book that an ...more
Nov 20, 2015 Genni rated it really liked it
Shelves: religion
Ths book was so much fun. It was not typical apologetics. He did not make a case for God, a young earth, etc, etc, but instead, takes on the soundbites of new atheism with humor, humor, and more humor (I recall no instances of ad hominem humor). In fact, the humor was almost distracting. Still, definitely worth reading.

Taking on the soundbites of "new atheism" limited the scope of the book. He did not address some of the more problematic topics of apologetics (evil, for example) very deeply. How
Jeffrey Backlin
Sep 17, 2015 Jeffrey Backlin rated it really liked it
Shelves: apologetics
This book, is if nothing else, hilarious; and that is no small point. Given our entertainment saturated, simple sound-bite thinking culture, this book might actually attract people to read an apologetic book. I would recommend this book also because it deals with the popular objections of the New Atheists that many philosophical and rigorous works ignore (because they are so bad) such as: "We just believe in one less God than you ..." "We don't believe in fairies, santa, etc" ... or "Athiesm is ...more
Sep 18, 2015 Rod rated it it was amazing
As Apologetic as this book is...

I got to label it as a Comedy book ALSO - because this tale is pure comic gold. I'm surprised atheists like Douglas Adams and Christopher Moore don't/didn't realize how funny Atheism can be? (actually, those two may be the leaders in that bit of enlightenment). If nothing else, this offering proves Richard Dawkins has no sense of humor (or logical arguments for his cause).

The subtitle of Andy's book is the foundation:
"The Atheist Who Didn't Exist - OR: the Dread
Adam Preece
Jul 31, 2015 Adam Preece rated it it was ok
I had hoped this book would contain some real insights into some of the poor arguments seen between christian and atheist. It does do this but not in the way it intends!

Straw-men abound regarding "atheism" (quotes intentional) so giving the impression that atheistic arguments are being refuted logically when in fact they're poor approximations which are not analogous. For example, the loch ness monster section is laughable and not comparable with the real world example. As far as I'm aware there
Dave Westerveld
Jul 17, 2015 Dave Westerveld rated it it was amazing
Sometimes the humor was a little overboard, but I really enjoyed this. Applying the logic to novel situations really helps show how absurd some of the logic used by New Atheism really is.
Meagan Myhren-bennett
The Atheist Who Didn't Exist
Or the Dreadful Consequences
of Bad Arguments
By Andy Bannister

The Atheist Who Didn't Exist is an intriguing and rather amusing look at the off the wall arguments that are used to justify personal beliefs. In the case of this book the arguments to justify not believing in God are examined. What can seem, on the surface, like a profoundly intelligent argument can in fact be a bunch of confusing word play.

Atheists don't believe God is dead, rather He never existed and t
Patrick Couch
Jun 25, 2016 Patrick Couch rated it it was amazing
Andy enjoys reading Pratchett and Adams. He has the same sense of humour, so I had to keep looking up his footnotes (e.g., "The English specialise in inventing sports and then getting beaten by the rest of the world in them. I like to think this displays not so much a lack of sporting prowess as modesty; we like to give other nations a chance." "The origin of the specious"). Having said that, Bannister's analysis of the arguments presented by the "New Atheists" is really clear. I mean that. If y ...more
Maureen Timerman
Sep 09, 2015 Maureen Timerman rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
When I saw this book had a forward by Ravi Zacharias I knew I wanted to read this, and was not disappointed.
What a remarkable gift and talent Andy Bannister possesses, such a quick wit and enjoyable read. Each chapter contains a story and his points are filled with chuckles and humor. While not everyone enjoys this type humor his points are right on, and we all know that atheists would not exist without Christians.
I have always wanted some comeback to address people who attack my Christian fait
J.J. Richardson
Jan 08, 2016 J.J. Richardson rated it it was amazing
This book is both hilarious in a British humor sort of way and hard hitting. It is respectful to atheists, yet challenges some of their most popular slogan arguments.
Aaron Cerda
Jul 15, 2015 Aaron Cerda rated it really liked it
The Atheist Who Didn't Exist is a new book by Andy Bannister, Canadian Director of RZIM. It is a book which is intended to expose the logical fallacies in the arguments used by New Atheism. For those unfamiliar with New Atheism, it is a movement which arose around 2004 as a sort of atheistic fundamentalism and by most accounts appears to be waning in popularity. It was characterized by aggressive ad hominems, religious zeal and an unprecedented proselytizing.

In this book, Bannister counters the
Jul 31, 2015 Debbie rated it liked it
"The Atheist Who Didn't Exist" is a Christian apologetics book. The purpose is to point out the problems with 'bad argument' sound bits for atheism so that Christians and Atheists can carry on a more thoughtful dialogue. The author took an atheist claim and rephrased it in another context so that it was easier to see how the argument held up. He started each chapter with a silly story that illustrated the argument in the new context, then he explained why it isn't a good argument.

I think he did
Sep 12, 2015 Agata rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone, especially atheists who think Dawkins is intelligent
Shelves: christianity
What an enjoyable and informative read. Andy tackles some of the bad arguments against belief in God (that are so common in today's culture thanks to the New Atheist movement) in a humorous but still serious way. Some of them include: atheism isn't a belief system, all gods/religions are the same, believing in God is like believing in Santa Claus, religion is a psychological crutch, religion poisons everything, science is the only way to know truth/reality, you can be good/moral without God, you ...more
Sep 04, 2015 Joan rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent book. Bannister does not attempt to prove that God exists. Rather, he looks at the arguments that He does not exist and tests their validity. He has us think through them, showing many to be absurd. He takes other arguments and turns them around or uses them in another setting to show they are not valid. Through all of this Bannister inserts some of his quirky humor. It serves the purpose to lighten up a bit this book on a serious subject. I recommend this book to atheists a ...more
Nov 21, 2015 Chuck rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Evidence, schmevidence! How do we know we're not just dreaming?

Andy Bannister does a good job of poking fun at several of the new atheists' arguments. He even offers some great rebuttals. However, I felt often his arguments were more about making us laugh, than convincing anyone that he was correct. A talking penguin that makes up his own meaning for life is funny, but does little to truly illustrate that life is meaningless apart from God. That being said, the book was an enjoyable read and giv
May 15, 2015 Rose rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. It's a great overview it some if the flaws in the arguments of the new Atheism movement, and its also a very accessible book to lend to friends who may be curious but not up to a full on academic style. Dr. Bannister makes his points well but with wit. My only complaint is that this book took me longer to read than it should have because I had to stop to facepalmed every 2 mines because there were SO MANY ridiculous puns. And soooo mannny alliterations.
Feb 14, 2016 Chris rated it it was amazing
A fantastic book that is extremely readable, with strong logical arguments mixed with practical humour. This book is sensible and reasonable, and rips the rug out from under many common empty arguments against the Christian faith. Bannister is a level-headed person who tries to walk a middle road, not assuming anything simply because of his faith. A repeat read for sure!
Barrie Lawrence
Jan 27, 2016 Barrie Lawrence rated it it was amazing
It's cool to be an atheist today, and aspiring militant atheists can read books by Hitchens, Dawkins et al, and slam their opponents with... But, hey, wait a minute! These books and arguments are not quite so convincing as some people think. In fact, they're full of holes. You don't think so? Then this is the book for you!
Yvonne Morris
Jul 05, 2015 Yvonne Morris rated it liked it
The book is amusing. As an atheist this book didn't represent me because I never feel the need to have arguments, discussions or defend my being an Atheist. I'm proud to be an atheist and respectful of others of all faiths.
Jul 15, 2015 Brit rated it really liked it
This is an easy to read apologetics book. Arguments are taken to their logical conclusion with wit, humor and seriousness.
Brandon H.
A delightful read! This book is almost as humorous as it is thought provoking. I highly recommend it!

A few quotes -

"You are, if you're honest with yourself, basically a pretty mixed bag, as am I. All too quickly I can be cruel as well as kind; means as well as munificent; as quick to hold a grudge as to forgive; petty and spiteful as well as generous; compassionate one moment, the very next willing to rejoice when somebody else fails. The same goes for you. You are, like me, part of that marvelo
Bob Seidensticker
Feb 17, 2017 Bob Seidensticker rated it did not like it
Bannister takes a deliberately lighthearted tone, but it comes across as condescending in many places. He attacks arguments with some condescension, which I don't really mind, but the mixture of "humor" and bile doesn't work.

This is an entry-level book. The arguments are retread arguments and won't give anything new to experienced readers of apologetics. He makes bold assertions (objective morality, objective meaning, and even that God exists) without backup.

If you're a Christian who wants a pat
Richard Spear
Feb 18, 2017 Richard Spear rated it it was amazing
Shelves: previously-read
Very funny and entertaining but thought provoking too.
David Bouchard
Jan 09, 2017 David Bouchard rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful, funny, thought-provoking book!

Andy's humor and excellent writing style is engaging and fun to read. He does a great job of fully engaging the points atheists bring up without simply rehashing the arguments found in other books. While being incredibly well researched, this book is never dry or dull. Bannister deeply understands the philosophical nuances and implications of all sides of the discussion and presents them uniquely and meaningfully.
Deana Dick
Oct 31, 2015 Deana Dick rated it really liked it
I have set this book aside for awhile knowing that I would have to review it at some point. I volunteered to read and give an honest review. When doing reviews, it is always wise to try to stick to the facts of a book and not give personal opinions. After all, to be fair to the author we review to critique the work, not argue if we believe what the writer puts in their book. I have always tried to be honest in my review and with this book I will continue to abide by my integrity. I will state th ...more
Chris Little
Nov 15, 2015 Chris Little rated it really liked it
Science is the only sure method for knowing things.

Faith and reason are opposed.

People believe in God because they're needy.

Atheism is not a belief at all - it's just non-belief.

You can discover goodness without God at all.

If you've heard statements like these then you and I are living in the same world. They're relatively common in the so-called 'New Atheism.'

But if you're convinced by any of these statements, then you've been duped. These arguments, and others like them, are all bad arguments,
Nov 10, 2015 Jan rated it really liked it
Shelves: pnacl

Andy Bannister is like no other apologetic author I have read. He so obviously has so thoroughly read every book on what atheists or non-believers say, that he is able with great intelligence, and fast paced story telling causes the reader to have their arguments unravel. The blend of humor with serious thought is very captivating for the reader. He does not use scripture often by when he quotes often uses N. T. Wright and Timothy Keller against Peter Hutchins and Richard Dawkins. This is not a
Aug 15, 2016 Kris rated it it was amazing
This book, with such a serious topic, is just filled with humor! I laughed so frequently as I not only read the book, but even the title chapters! So, not only does the author fill the book with amusing antidotes, he also logically pokes holes in the atheist views in a very light-hearted, easy to read format. And I loved how he even mentioned Sheldon Cooper, a character on a television show!

As the back of the book states, “Blending humour with serious thought, Andy Bannister helps the reader que
Becky B
Jul 10, 2016 Becky B rated it really liked it
Andy Bannister writes a response to the most common arguments of the new atheists that attack belief in God, the word faith, and other anti-religious sentiments. A lot of their rallying cries have infiltrated modern culture, and in his own unique voice, Andy tackles the arguments, the myths and misconceptions, and the faulty logic of some of the most common sayings.

I was not planning to read this, but my husband started it and had to stop so frequently to share what he was laughing at it ended
Aug 11, 2015 C.G. rated it really liked it
Well, if I were rating this book purely on the number of times I snorted in laughter or had to stop and read a footnote to my husband, it would get 5+ stars, no question! in fact, the hubs made the comment that he hadn't heard me laugh so much over a book in a long time, if ever. Andy Bannister seems like THAT friend you'd want to invite to every dinner party... except I doubt we could ever be friends due to his clear hatred of goat cheese and our addiction to it. So sad...

As far as the meat of
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“If there is no God, then humankind is not designed, purposed, or planned: there is nothing we are intended to be. All that we hold dear, all of our dreams, ambitions, goals, and accomplishments are pure accidents of atoms. Furthermore, no matter how high we squirm up the greasy pole of existence, no matter how enlightened we become, all of it – the whole cathedral of human accomplishment – is destined to become no more than rubble, buried beneath the debris of the end of the universe: utterly ruined, pitch dark, cold as death, achingly alone.” 5 likes
“is there something that we are meant to be, or is a life spent playing computer games and eating pizza as valid as one spent fighting poverty or serving the cause of justice?” 3 likes
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