Alister McGrath – February 5th, 2017

Alister McGrath will speak at Champion Forest Baptist Church (Cypress Creek Campus) on February 5 at 9:30 am in the Worship Center.

Alister Edgar McGrath is a Northern Irish theologian, priest, intellectual historian, scientist, and Christian apologist. He is the Andreas Idreos Professor of Science and Religion at the University of Oxford, Director of the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion, and Fellow of Harris Manchester College Oxford. He also serves as Gresham Professor of Divinity. He holds three doctorates from the University of Oxford, DPhil in Molecular Biophysics, Doctor of Divinity in Theology and Doctor of Letters in Intellectual History.

He was previously Professor of Theology, Ministry, and Education at King’s College London and Head of the Centre for Theology, Religion and Culture. Before that, he was Professor of Historical Theology at the University of Oxford, and principal of Wycliffe Hall, Oxford. He is an Anglican priest, ordained within the Church of England. McGrath has also taught at Cambridge University and was a Teaching Fellow at Regent College.

As a former atheist, McGrath is respectful yet critical of the movement. In recent years, he has been especially interested in the emergence of “scientific atheism” and has researched the distinctive approach to atheist apologetics found in the writings of the Oxford zoologist Richard Dawkins. He regularly engages in debate and dialogue with leading atheists. He is presently researching the iconic role played by Charles Darwin in atheist apologetics, and the appeal to the controversial and problematic concept of the “meme” in recent atheist accounts of the origins of belief in God.

One of his main research interests is the area of thought traditionally known as “natural theology,” which is experiencing significant renewal and revitalization. He addressed this theme in detail at his Richardson Lectures at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (2008), his Gifford Lectures at the University of Aberdeen (2009), and his Hulsean Lectures at the University of Cambridge (2009). All three have been published as books.

Other areas of his research have included C. S. Lewis and a major intellectual history of the Swiss Protestant theologian Emil Brunner. His 2013 book, C. S. Lewis – A Life: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet, was followed by a collection of eight major academic essays on Lewis. He wrote the first volume in a series entitled Christian Belief for Everyone and a textbook entitled, Christian History: An Introduction. A new edition of his best-selling ChristianTheology: An Introduction, was launched in Nov. 2016. He has written over 40 books in the last 28 years.

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