Read God and Stephen Hawking: Whose Design Is It Anyway? by John C. Lennox Online


'The Grand Design', by eminent scientist Stephen Hawking, is the latest blockbusting contribution to the so-called New Atheist debate, and claims that the laws of physics themselves brought the Universe into being, rather than God. In this swift and forthright reply, John Lennox, Oxford mathematician and author of 'God's Undertaker', exposes the flaws in Hawking's logic. I'The Grand Design', by eminent scientist Stephen Hawking, is the latest blockbusting contribution to the so-called New Atheist debate, and claims that the laws of physics themselves brought the Universe into being, rather than God. In this swift and forthright reply, John Lennox, Oxford mathematician and author of 'God's Undertaker', exposes the flaws in Hawking's logic. In lively, layman's terms, Lennox guides us through the key points in Hawking's arguments - with clear explanations of the latest scientific and philosophical methods and theories - and demonstrates that far from disproving a Creator God, they make his existence seem all the more probable....

Title : God and Stephen Hawking: Whose Design Is It Anyway?
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ISBN : 9780745955490
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 96 Pages
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God and Stephen Hawking: Whose Design Is It Anyway? Reviews

  • Manny
    2019-05-27 16:39

    Stephen Hawking evidently enjoys the gentle art of trolling; I reluctantly concede that I am a rank amateur in his august company. All the same, John Lennox's irate reply sounds eerily familiar. If I may paraphrase for a moment:Dear Dr Rayner Professor Hawking,You think you are so clever, but your Harry Potter review popular book on cosmology shows you are just plain dumb. You say that YA literature is crap philosophy is dead, but your whole review book just reads like the worst kind of YA literature philosophy. If you knew anything about it you would realize that. You say there was nothing about the Horcruxes before book 7 M-Theory created the Universe. That just shows how ignorant you are. You clearly don't even understand what a Horcrux metaphysical principle is. And none of your trivial, obviously fallacious arguments even for one moment shake my conviction that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows the Bible is the greatest book ever written. I could go on for hours giving you examples of how over and over again you misunderstand everything, but I have to finish my homework write a paper on infinite soluble groups. Yours sincerely, HPFanBoy John Lennox, PhD, Oxford

  • Joey
    2019-06-08 19:38

    I can feel that John Lennox is deeply devoted to his God. Thus, I cannot blame him if he is such a dye in the wool; he is not far different from the notorious atheists such as Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, and Richard Dawkins , militantly criticize all the major religions in the world. I may be an avowed atheist as I always put it here bluntly, in accord with their proposition that God does not exist, but I have at last agreed with the famous contemporary British philosopher , Alain de Botton, that in practicality, people need religion , in a sense that without it, is dangerous since such practice has become part of culture around the world. In fact, Alain de Botton is an atheist too. In this book, originally a response article to Stephen Hawking’s book The Grand Design (co-authored with Caltech physicist Leonard Mlodinow ) that appeared in the Daily Mail, September 3, 2010, John Lennox, a Mathematics professor and religious adviser , contradicts Stephen Hawking’s claim that: “ Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going.”In Lennox ‘s apologetic opinion, the Universe and everything needs a creator: God. However, the problem with John Lennox’s argument is anthropomorphic and pantheistic. Cognizant he may be of these facts , he points out that the Universe and all natural phenomena cannot come into existence without a creator: God. If so, what does he mean by God? In a sense that God is in human form, a superhuman with such superpower to be able to create everything even the vast Universe? Such an idea is beyond our imagination. Or does not he mean that creator is a force as what pantheists believe? How about the idea of Carl Jung that human is the God itself? Since he argues that everything cannot be put into action without an agent?John Lennox argues that scientific laws and theories do not actuate human and have cause nd effects; they, according to him, only describe how things happen. They are even untestable; for instance, the idea of M-theory. He must have overlooked or, to put it mildly, brushed the fact aside that scientific laws and theories have been the bases on explaining how things happen and are changing ,or can possibly happen in the future , since the time immemorial. To put it bluntly again, I ‘d rather believe in those laws and theories than in something irrational, inconstant, and illogical. Miracle is another argument not only John Lennox, let alone the believers turn to to believe that God exists. As far as we are concerned, miracle means something happens without explicit and rational explanation. In other words, when people are not able to explain a phenomena, they invoke God. Once again, God means in superhuman or pantheistic form? How about drawing the conclusion that such case is under the subject to extensive and thorough studies Period.? The problem with believers is that they are instilled in the fear of denying God’s existence. And this is the point of Alain de Botton as I have mentioned above.For me, not in a bellicose and belligerent way, John Lennox’s argument is a product of religious upbringing. His reasons are incorrigible. But to avoid religious collision, I will take de Botton’s opinion: Respect one another. Sad to say, it turns out not to be a religious anti-dote at all. I could have liked the book by giving it 2 out of 5 stars only if Lennox were not so “ idealistic”.But 1 star does not necessarily mean this is poor, but in a sense that how the book convinced me. This is the way here on Goodreads it is!

  • Eric_W
    2019-06-26 00:49

    Normally, I wouldn’t read this kind of book, but given the substantial number of positive comments, and its abbreviated length, I figured what the hell. Admittedly, I skimmed much of it. I doubt very much that parsing each sentence would have made any difference.The preponderance of reviewers around the web appear to believe Lennox destroyed Hawking’s arguments. He did no such thing and to do so would have been impossible since each is starting with a different set of assumptions: Lennox with his belief that God exists and that something cannot arise from nothing (totally failing to explain God’s origin); Hawking with the opposite, that something can easily arise from nothing. It doesn't help that each has a different definition of what constitutes “nothing.” One could have reconciled both positions by simply accepting the proposition that God is the laws of physics, but that wouldn’t be any fun.I suspect that reviewers will line up for or against this book depending on their prior assumptions as well, so I am not ranking this book because I’m sure that my certainty that there is no God (as defined by Christians, Moslems, and Jews, i.e. an entity that actually gives a shit and responds to requests to intervene often violating the laws of physics when necessary) just couldn’t possibly exist would predispose a negative rank. Lennox’s book is a response to Hawking’s book, The Grand Design, which I have not read. A review in Science News (7.27.12) notes that Hawking’s poses and proposes to answer the following questions. “ Why is there a universe? Why is there something rather than nothing? Why do we exist? Why are the laws of nature what they are? While acknowledging the fine-tuning of Earth that allows for favorable life conditions, Hawking promotes the multiverse theory, which holds that our universe is only one of countless others, each with their own forces of nature.” So both he and Lennox are engaged in a conjectural debate. I don’t like that since you can’t conjecture your way out of a paper bag. By doing so, Hawking’s speculation opened the door wide to counter-speculation. (Anyone who argues that using the Bible as a source to refute conjecture just doesn’t know his history or Bible. There’s way too much evidence on how those beliefs evolved and were developed. There is as much evidence for the existence of Leprachauns and Santa Claus as there is for God and they all rely on faith.) I’m always amused by those who claim that the Big Bang, evolution, etc. are mere theories, and then go on to unquestionably accept the greatest hypothesis of them all, that “God” exists, for which there is no evidence at all.So the debate, if one dare call it that, is like two guys sitting in a bar, one claiming Babe Ruth was the greatest baseball player; the other asserting it had to be Hank Aaron, each absolutely certain. Fun, I guess, if you are well-lubricated. For the rest of us, it’s just a boring conversation that only makes the righteous on both sides happy. For my part, Hawking should have stuck to astrophysics and Lennox to math neither of which is useful to the debate and left the speculation to pundits.

  • Preston
    2019-06-06 22:44

    Horrible. If you have a copy, go ahead and burn it and save yourself some trouble. It's a tedious task to read as I've yet to encounter one good argument; instead I've found a slew of insults and worthless writing intended to let a theistic reader fall back into a lazy train of thought. It's a god-awful Appeal to Authority with misused quotes, horrible research, and nothing new. I'm going to finish it off, but it may take some time as it is sickening. It may be a comfortable read for the theist, but it seems to address nothing but self-serving-biased thinking. I'll keep reading and hope there is some critical substance later on. Honestly, Lennox seems jealous of Hawking; it has stab after stab at the man, each one trying to degrade him.I'd like to catalog some passages I came across below for future construction of my review (I hope I eventually find some worthwhile arguments that might let me give the book more stars-but if I must work this hard to wade through the shat I don't know that I can):IntroductionLennox "writes off" the "inevitable conflict between science and religion" with a piss-poor example, "That conflict view of the matter has long since been discredited. Take, for example, the first author on our list, Francis Collins...a Christian, Watson an atheist." WHAT?!?! You can prove problems that have existed for millenniums wrong by stating an irrelevant example?!"The remarkable surge of interest in God defies the so-called secularization hypothesis...[assuming] that religion would eventually decline and die out." Atheism, Deism, and Pantheism has been growing across Europe, especially in the countries which were first to state this "so-called hypothesis" - I still don't know why it's the so-called hypothesis? Is is called differently by different people? Anyway, most of the countries central to philosophical thought Theism is a shrinking minority."This particular development has understandably proved infuriating for the secularists" Hmm...Let's just generalize and speak for entire groups of people whom we are not affiliated with or elected by. I'm pretty sure most secularists could care less.Chapter 1: The Big Questions"In his runaway best seller, Hawking brought the recondite world of fundamental physics to the coffee table (although many people have confessed to finding the contents rather beyond them). The book was followed by several others in the same vein..." Okay, was this jealous stab at Stephen Hawking's success? If no one can understand the physics and science how are they supposed to deny his suppositions?"'but philosophy is dead. It has not kept up with modern developments in science, particularly in physics..." Could it be that Hawking was making a metaphorical assertion much like the one made by Nietzsche that "God is dead." I am guessing that he isn't talking about the discipline of philosophy when he says that "it has not kept up." How does an abstract idea keep up? Oh, that's right, Hawking was speaking about the body of philosophers as a whole, perhaps over generalizing but for better cause than falsely framing this as a self-contradiction."his statement that philosophy is dead contradicts itself." Oh, wow, very insightful.I am a philosopher, and I'll speak to the truth of Hawking's statement. My professors are decades behind in the developments of every science. I, personally, committed myself to reading all of the literature of every discipline as any philosopher should do, and hopefully I can help to change this, along with a number of others (and current philosophers), but currently, philosophy is very far behind science."Furthermore, Hawking's statement that 'scientists have become the bearers of the torch of discovery' smacks of scientism - the view that science is the only way to truth."...This is a statement that is so utterly stupid I'm not sure how to respond. What truths has religion given us? What truths has mysticism given us? And I don't mean the falsifiable Truths that for which we must have faith and trust in abstract entities."For any scientist, let alone a science superstar, to disparage philosophy on the one hand, and then at once to adopt a self-contradictory philosophical stance on the other, is not the wisest thing to do" What a ploy! What a sickening deluded way of going about a critique! It is disgusting that people delude themselves with this garbage to feel comforted. Throughout the entire book he has been making appeals to authority, literally throughout the entire thing, and now he attempts to sum it up with such the weakest shot at trying to weaken Hawking's own authority using a damn quote he misrepresents completely, only to drone on into more appeal to authority. Albert Einstein would be sickened by Lennox's use of his quotes in order to jealously disparage Hawking. I am beginning think the other readers and I have read completely different books because they exclaim this book while I gag on it."[Hawkings] is but a step away from regarding atheism as a necessary prerequisite for doing science" WTF?! Now, since you have to misrepresent Hawking's words to come of up with a shat argument you are now going to put words into his mouth?! Are you critiquing a caricature of Hawking? This book oozes of jealousy. To actually address the claim made, naturalism (the position held by atheism) is and always has been a prerequisite for science. Lennox suggests that Hawking posits "a 'God of the Gaps', who will increasingly be displaced as the gaps in our knowledge are filled by scientific explanations, sot hat he will eventually disappear completely," but I'm still searching for the part that is not evident when looking at history and the development of science. The "un-scientifically-answerable questions" are answered equally well by philosophy if not better as they are by religion. And Einstein is probably wrong about reducing ethics to scientific formulae, but it would be far more complex than any scientific formulae we currently have.Furthermore, this is sheer Appeal to Authority; if any reader knows anything about Einstein, they should know that his religious views were pantheistic. Einstein criticizes the views of theists, especially Christians; The author is banking on the reader's ignorance of Einstein here. Maybe he is banking on his own ignorance. This is like when I was arguing with a Christian and he sited Nietzsche. What? One out-of-context quote does not make the man. Also, notice that Einstein said "scientific formulae;" Scientific is unequal with philosophic, and Einstein was sure a hell not supporting a religious formulation of ethics. Einstein would be as sick as I am to see his name misrepresented.This book is an sickening waste of my time.

  • Meg Hykes
    2019-06-23 22:51

    Mr. Lennox does a beautiful job of pointing out Stephen Hawking's many self-contradictions in his book The Grand Design. He starts off with the fact that Stephen Hawking's own statement "philosophy is dead" is in fact proving that philosophy is still very much alive and kicking.Mr. Lennox also points out the fact that Stephen Hawking seems to believe that a theory might bring the universe into existence. How is this possible when theories and laws on there own, can not even cause anything, let alone create it? Lennox writes, "A move to advance the cause of atheism by means of highly speculative, untestable theory that is not within the zone of evidence-based science, and which, even if it were true, could not dislodge God in any case, is not exactly calculated to impress those of us whose faith in God is not speculative, but testable and well within the zone of evidence based rational thought." Mr. Lennox also adds later, "The interesting thing about those who espouse various kinds of relativism: they all seem to end up by saying, essentially, that truth, perception, etc. are relative, except of course the truth they are passionately trying to get us to perceive. That is, they fail to apply their own relativism to themselves." Beautifully said! Okay, one final quote from this fabulous book (and then you just need to get out there and buy a copy for your home). Lennox writes, "Much of the rationale behind Hawking's argument lies in the idea that there is a deep-seated conflict between science and religion. This is not a discord that I recognize. For me, as a Christian believer, the beauty of the scientific laws reinforces my faith in an intelligent, divine Creator. The more I understand science the more I believe in God, because of my wonder at the breadth, sophistication, and integrity of his creation."My Final Thoughts: BUY IT!! I truly think that every home should have a copy of this book! I am extremely grateful when a scientist or mathematician steps up and publishes there own book to point out the many contradictions being put out there today. I love the way Mr. Lennox writes so that I don't need to be a "science buff" to know exactly what has been said and how it is inaccurate. He does it in such a way that I never felt that I was being talked down to (which I truly appreciate).This book was so engaging that I actually found myself not only taking notes, but discussing it non-stop with whoever would listen to me. I look forward to reading through it again and highlighting many, many points of interest (which if you know me that's huge - I NEVER mark my books up). http://meg-homeschoolinmama.blogspot....

  • Bob Mendelsohn
    2019-06-03 22:39

    Having listened to a few lectures by Prof Lennox (Oxford Uni, Mathematics), I can hear him speaking as I read this booklet. Perhaps it was actually a series of lectures he gave which are now compiled into this well-documented and easy-to-follow scholarly work in answer to Stephen Hawking's book The Great Design. Prof Lennox shows due deference to the man Prof Hawking and yet at the same time, has capacity and Irish aplomb in denigrating Hawking's postulates and conclusions. I like both.Prof Lennox goes after Hawking specifically viz. philosophy, the laws of nature and the law of gravity, M-theory and the multiverse, and so much more. I really liked his frank and clear exposing of the errors of Hawking's conclusions. No need for a spoiler alert; Lennox is a radical who has no trouble believing in the God of the Bible AND science. They are not oppositional he avers. And he maintains that opinion.

  • Rod
    2019-06-25 18:04

    John Lennox would be the greatest Grandpa EVER! (He's a professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford, and many other things. He's also a Christian Apologist who has debated Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens, and lectured all over the world).In this book he takes on the sacred Cowboy of Atheistic Science: Stephen Hawking.I just watched the somewhat biographical movie: The Theory of Everything. Good show. It's amazing how religion seems to touch just about everything. Almost every science book I pick up (which ain't that many) has a whack of crap to say about God. And that's the challenge with some Scientists --- instead of boldly doing science: they are desperate to undo God. You would think science would be busy without this added inserted mockery. But Nope! Mr. Hawking has an agenda with his science, as does Richard Dawkins and a gaggle of other self-declared enlightened professors. It appears some scientists are never that busy actually doing REAL science. Here, the Irish Grandpa of Christian Theological Mathy scholarship has a few concerns with Hawking's Shoddy efforts. It seems Hawking's foot is often fully inserted into his own mouth. Stephen Hawking is famous in my memory for stating: "Philosophy Is Dead." (This was immortalized in the movie: God's Not Dead). The problem is: Not only is philosophy not dead - but everyone is using it whether they are smart enough to know it or not. Most assumed Hawking was smart??? Maybe being self aware isn't his highest priority. Here's a fun comment: (pg. 31)"To presuppose the existence of the universe to account for its own existence sounds like something from Alice In Wonderland, not science."And that is the problem with this entire argument between Science and Christianity (sorry, I really don't think other religions even belong in this discussion). The Elephant in the room is that the challenge is really between Good science vs. Bad science. Christianity is Christianity regardless. Lennox shows clearly that Hawking is basically attempting to do magic with his scientific assumptions. Here's how: (pg. 31)"He says a universe comes from a nothing that turns out to be a something...then he says the universe creates itself...but that is not all. His notion that a law of nature (gravity) explains the existence of the universe is also self-contradictory..."Yes, a rabbit can't usually pull itself out of a hat, or cause itself to be created by the hat, or accept so easily that the hat simply created the rabbit out of an eternal boredom.Here's my favorite quote of the book: (pg. 32) John Lennox says"What this all goes to show is that nonsense remains nonsense, even when talked by world famous scientists."Don't forget; John Lennox is an Oxford Professor of Mathematics. He's not some nobody Goodreads Talking Donkey who writes down every bodily noise that blurts out from his orifices. Is he obviously correct? NO, but he's worth investigating. Here's another comment: (pg. 39)"Yet this is essentially what many scientists do with God. They define the range of questions that science is permitted to ask in such a way that God is excluded from the start; and then they claim that God is unnecessary, or doesn't exist. They fail to see that their science does not answer the question as to why something exists rather than nothing...They also fail to see that by assumption it is their atheist world-view, not science as such, that excludes God."The chapter on God and the multiverse is rather fun."We note in passing that Hawking has once again fallen into the trap of offering false alternatives. This time it is: God or the multiverse...theoretically, God could create as many universes as he pleases... what of the multiverse itself? Is it fine-tuned? If it is, then Hawking is back where he started."So much fun. Here's one last good quote (pg. 54) John Butterworth (who works at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland says)"M-theory is highly speculative and certainly not in the zone of science that we have got any evidence for."Okay, here's another quote just because it is funny. And speaks of Alien life-forms. (I wish I had a dollar for every atheist that has faith in Space Aliens... but finds time to mock God and a world filled with religion?!)(pg. 94)"Hawking imagines that the potential existence of other life forms in the universe undermines the traditional religious conviction that we are living in a unique, God-created planet. I find it faintly amusing that atheists often argue for the existence of extra-terrestrial intelligence beyond earth. They are only too eager to denounce the possibility that there exists a vast, intelligent being "Out there", namely God, who has left his fingerprints all over HIS creation."So how much money is spent looking for Aliens? And I often hear atheists complain about Religious folks wasting cash. Hmmm? Fairy tales indeed. (has everyone seen the blasphemous comedy Space-Alien movie: "Paul". Hilarious - don't let your kids watch it. But basically this is the future hope of atheists.)I could quote from this book all day. So many great comments that should cause folks to - not so blindly - have endless faith in Hawking's deity of scientism. Yes, once again, an endless Atheistic assertion of Science of the Gaps. This is a short book. A good start to investigating and critiquing secular science and its sacred institution of Peer Review Publishing. Science isn't much different than Hollywood these days. Pretty soon we'll even have Red Carpet Awards shows for celebrity scientists... (actually that movie I mentioned earlier: "The Theory of Everything" basically shows this.) Hawking and Dawkins are like Rockstars. And we all know we shouldn't take those kind of folks seriously - It's all entertainment! Satan is proud.After Hawking has come and gone - The Bible and its God will still be going strong.

  • Bob Hayton
    2019-06-23 16:42

    The new atheists, like Richard Dawkins and Stephen Hawking, are ever in the public spotlight these days, or so it seems. The idea that brilliant physicists and scientists can make sense of this world without a God appeals to many. Certainly the conclusions reached in books such as Hawking’s latest book, The Grand Design — that there is no God and no ultimate point to the universe — are conclusions many atheists and secularists are all too eager to affirm. Since everything does fit so nicely together, however, should we wonder if the case made is really as air tight as claimed? If the conclusions are made to order, we might have warrant to carefully scrutinize the claims of these New Atheist authors.John Lennox, author of God’s Undertaker, and a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford in his own right, takes on Stephen Hawking’s arguments in a forthcoming book published by Lion Books and distributed in the US by Kregel Publications (available July 15). In God and Stephen Hawking: Whose Design Is It Anyway?, Lennox exposes the circular reasoing and non sequitors that abound in Hawking’s The Grand Design. Lennox begins by framing the scope of what science can really address as it attempts to examine metaphysical questions. He then points out both Hawking’s dismissal of philosophy and his misunderstanding of Christian theism. God is not merely a “god of the gaps”, an explanation for the world as we know it. The Christian understanding of God has Him outside the boundaries of creation as Lord over all of it, not some explanation for unknown phenomena. As for philosophy, after rejecting it as “dead”, Hawking jumps in and tries his own hand at several metaphysical questions that philosophy has long addressed. Hawking’s attempt at doing philosophy is all the poorer for his outright rejection of it.Lennox then takes Hawking to task for claiming that the theory of gravity, or scientific laws in general, can operate as a “creator” in a sense, and be the ultimate cause for our universe. He clarifies what a law or rule of nature really “is”, and illustrates how Hawking makes more of such laws than can really be claimed. He then goes on to show how Hawking’s “M” theory of the “Multiverse” conveniently sidesteps objections by positing the existence of infinite universes. Still the question remains, why are there any universes instead of no universe? Lennox reveals that other major physicists have their own doubts as to the ability that M theory really has for being an explanation of everything.Lennox also addresses head on the claim that miracles cannot happen because the laws of science would be invalidated. He pries open the layers from this question and shows the irrationality of claiming that science strictly forbids the existence of exceptions or miracles.By the end of this short book (it’s only 100 pages long), Lennox has made a convincing case for theism and demonstrated that reasonable scientists continue to affirm the divine. Lennox’s book is accessible and clear, even as it interacts with quite complicated elements from Hawking’s writing. The book doesn’t own the six-day, young earth Creationist view, but it doesn’t rule it out either. Lennox argues that often the new atheists assume that to believe in God is to believe in a young earth view, and he shows this is not true. Lennox marshals arguments from science (the very idea of the big bang supports the Bible’s claim that the world has a beginning – something science has only admitted in the last hundred years), philosophy, history and the realm of human experience. The resulting case is convincing and should serve to bolster the faith of any troubled by the new atheism. At the least, it offers avenues of further exploration available in grappling with these issues.Before closing my review, I should excerpt a small section from this book which captures some of Lennox’s craft in action. This excerpt will illustrate his style and the way he can cut to the heart of an issue with incisive logic."Suppose, to make matters clearer, we replace the universe by a jet engine and then are asked to explain it. Shall we account for it by mentioning the personal agency of its inventor, Sir Frank Whittle? Or shall we follow Hawking: dismiss personal agency, and explain the jet engine by saying that it arose naturally from physical law…. It is not a question of either/or. It is self-evident that we need both levels of explanation in order to give a complete description. It is also obvious that the scientific explanation neither conflicts nor competes with the agent explanation: they complement one another. It is the same with explanations of the universe: god does not conflict or compete with the laws of physics as an explanation. God is actually the ground of all explanation, in the sense that he is the cause in the first place of there being a world for the laws of physics to describe."To this I add my “amen”. I encourage you to pick up this little book as it offers an excellent primer on how to deal with the claims of the new atheism. Even if you differ with Lennox on a point or two, his clear style and succinct arguments will equip you in thinking through these issues on your own.Disclaimer: This book was provided by Kregel Publications via Litfuse Publicity Group. I was under no obligation to offer a favorable review.

  • Carol Fleisher
    2019-06-23 16:41

    Book Review: The Grand Design, by eminent scientist Stephen Hawkings, is the latest blockbusting contribution to the "New Atheist" debate, and claims that the laws of physics themselves brought the universe into being, rather than God. In this swift and forthright reply, John Lennox, Oxford mathematician and author of God's Undertaker, takes a closer look at Hawking's logic.In lively, layman's terms, Lennox guides us through the key points in Hawkings arguments-with clear explanations of the latest scientific and philosophical methods and theories and demonstrates that far from disproving a Creator God, they make his existence seems all the more probable.My Review :I have to admit I was intimidated when I first recived this book for review. I do not consider myself a scholar by any means. I decied to participate in the book review because I remembered my husband reading one of Stephen Hawking's books. I like the fact that it is a short book but the shortnessness of pages does not mean it has no debth. I found this book very easy to read. Lennox did a wonderful job of explaining complex theories in layman's terms. Although I did have to read a few passages twice to fully comprehend what was being discussed. I think this book will help many with the terminology being used by those who believe in only science and reason. I am hoping to reread this book soon with my husband so we can dissicus the theories presented in this book.I highly recommend this book for anyone looking to sharpen their faith and help understand current scientific and logical theories.The AuthorJohn C Lennox MA PhD DPhil DSc is professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford and Fellow in Mathematics and the Philosophy of Science at Green Templeton College. He has debated Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens and lectured in many universities around the world. You might also like:

  • Barton Jahn
    2019-06-25 00:45

    A short and concise book…96 pages…that analyses the thinking of Stephen Hawking in the debate between science and Christianity…in terms of design versus materialistic naturalism. Lennox makes a compelling case for design…having the mathematics credentials as a professor in mathematics at Oxford…and two other PhD’s in philosophy and science…to be able to take apart the theories of Hawking on an equal standing as a scientist. A very readable book accessible to the general public, while still tackling the most difficult issues in this critically important cultural, social, scientific, and theological question.

  • Amy
    2019-06-12 21:04

    I would have liked more. An interesting read but at times needed more depth.

  • Domagoj
    2019-06-12 20:04

    Wow, prof. Lennox never fails to suprise me. His philosophy is so clear and easy to follow. I am intrigued how one of most intelligent people alive, Stephen Hawking, did not read much on the subject from philosophy. Perhaps it is so because he thinks philosophy is dead. As prof. Lennox writes: "The very first thing I notice is that Hawking's statement about philosophy is itself a philosophical statement. It is manifestly not a statement of science: it is a metaphysical statement about science. Therefore, his statement that philosophy is dead contradicts itself. It is a classic example of logical incoherence."

  • Rodney Harvill
    2019-06-06 16:50

    This book is a book-length critical review of Stephen Hawking’s book The Grand Design. Because Dr. Lennox’s areas of expertise are math and philosophy, not physics, he doesn’t feel qualified to critique Hawking’s physics. Rather, he critiques the underlying philosophy of the book, reducing it to shreds. Some issues he has with Hawking include:1. At the outset, Hawking declares philosophy to be dead, having failed to keep up with modern developments in science. He then proceeds to engage in bad philosophy, apparently having failed to keep up with modern developments in philosophy.2. Hawking associates biblical religion with the ancient religions that deified the universe, failing to recognize that long before the Greek philosophers de-deified the universe by questioning the pagan gods, the ancient Israelites worshipped the Creator God who made the universe, an orderly universe. As Dr. Lennox puts it, Hawking “confuses God with the gods.”3. In his assertion that the universe can create itself out of nothing on account of the law of gravity, Hawking displays logical incoherence. For one thing, he fails to keep the definition of “nothing” consistent, sometimes using it to refer to quantum vacuum, sometimes to nothing at all. Secondly, something cannot create itself. For it to do this, it would have to be pre-existent. Thirdly, to use the law of gravity to explain the existence of the universe is contradictory because the law of gravity depends for its own existence on the prior existence of the universe whose behavior it describes. In other words, the law of gravity also requires the universe to be pre-existent to work.4. Hawking appears to be assigning to the laws of nature creative power and agency to take God out of the picture. It is almost as if he is turning the laws of nature into god. Furthermore, laws of nature are descriptive and not prescriptive. They merely describe how the universe works but cannot explain how it comes about. Hawking’s claim that God is not necessary is an assumption on his part at the outset, not a product of his science, but a self-imposed boundary condition on it.5. Hawking appears to be attempting to assign to multiverse cosmology the same certainty that is associated with observable science, such as Kepler’s laws. Kepler’s laws are verifiable by observation and can be used to accurately predict the behavior of planets and other objects in orbit. M-theory is speculative and untestable.In this short review, I have barely scratched the surface of Dr. Lennox’s critique of Hawking. Take the time to read both Hawking’s book and Lennox’s critique. The critique is a superb example of critical thinking in action. I don’t expect all to appreciate all that Dr. Lennox has to say. Young earth creationists, of which I am one, may be put off by his old earth creationism, but they can still learn from him.

  • James P
    2019-06-15 00:51

    Clear and concise. Worth reading.

  • Clark Goble
    2019-06-02 23:45

    This is the first book I've read by John Lennox. I picked it up as it offered a response to Hawking's Grand Design. The first thing I did was examine Lennox's credentials and, I must say, I was more than impressed. Lennox is a Professor of Mathematics and a contemporary of Hawking at Oxford University. I was intrigued to examine the arguments of a Christian apologist who also engaged in something as logical as advanced mathematics. Lennox did not disappoint. Hawking may be the "Grandmaster of Physics" but Lennox immediately establishes that the author of The Grand Design fails in his attempts to engage in the metaphysical. Lennox defines the battle as one between Theism and Atheism with scientists on both sides (rather than one between Science and Faith) and makes the case that Hawking's assertion that philosophy is dead qualifies as a philosophical statement (thus revealing the inconsistencies in Hawking's position). Lennox then proceeds to systematically destroy Hawking's philosophical position. Of particular interest was Lennox's attack on Hawking primary alternative to God, M-theory (or multiverse). Lennox explores the proposition of the multiverse and makes the case that M-Theory in and of itself does not provide an adequate alternative to a Divine Creator.I found it quite refreshing that Lennox approaches his subject matter as one who obviously respects knowledge and respects the sciences while also believing in Jesus Christ. Lennox is a scholar of the highest caliber and destroys any notion that Theism is somehow contrary to science, I recommend his book for anyone who has read Hawking's The Grand Design as well as for any Christian who is approaching a study of the sciences. At the very least, Lennox aptly demonstrates how to recognize when statements of science deviate into the realm of the metaphysical. I greatly look forward to reading more John Lennox.

  • Bill
    2019-06-21 01:04

    I am ill suited to rate this book. Firstly, I read it fairly rapidly and without great attention to detail; Secondly, I am not particularly interested in the scientific detail of the Atheist-Theist debate; And thirdly, I have not read Stephen Hawking's book in order to make any comparison.So why did I read this book at all?! Firstly, because I like John Lennox, and wanted to read one of his books; Secondly, because I am interested in the current Atheist-Theist debate in more general terms; And thirdly, because it was free.My impression? I like John Lennox. He's persuasive. He pays genuine attention to the detail of the Atheist arguments, in contrast to the Atheist writers who often seem content to be scornfully dismissive, without reference to the actual arguments of their opponents. Having said that, this isn't an "anyone would benefit" book -- I certainly struggled through a lot of the scientific detail, and this is a popular level book! I enjoyed the discussion on miracles in the final chapter.

  • Kris
    2019-05-28 23:45

    Wonderful! But I want more! Really the only major complaint I have for this book is that it's too short. I suppose Lennox is too busy doing math problems to write a big long book on philosophy and Atheism, one I can sink my teeth into for 300 pages. This was great, but I'm still waiting for more, Lennox!Also, side note--I was all ready to give this book five shining stars, until I stumbled across the end of chapter two, which betrays the fact that Lennox is an Old-Earth Creationist. As a Young-Earth Creationist, I have to disagree with him on this.I'm a bit scared to read Seven Days That Divide The World: The Beginning According To Genesis & Science now. I'm sure it will still be great, but I'm used to being in such complete agreement with Lennox, and now that's gone. *sigh* Ah, well. The same happened with C. S. Lewis, so to err is human, I suppose. I still love you, John Lennox!

  • Ryan Manns
    2019-06-01 00:01

    Lennox has quickly become one of my favourite voices in the science and theism dialogue. This book was quite the short read but very profound. He does a brilliant job discussing Hawking's book "The Grand Design." I would recommend this book to anyone interested in science and faith.

  • Sarah Grace Honsinger
    2019-06-12 20:40

    Faith and Science are not necessarily at odds. Lennox not only obliterates Stephen Hawking's arguments, but he also puts forth a strong counterargument for post-modern thought. It's great.

  • Douglas G. Dikun
    2019-06-09 19:01

    Never quite sure reading Stephen Hawking if he waivers in his beliefs. Does not believing in God really exist. Does SH actually acknowledge a being who set this all up once he realizes that there is not time enough since his Big Bang for everything like this to be so perfect without some designer being involved?

  • Joshua Cole
    2019-06-23 16:57

    Intelligent arguments from a brilliant mathematician. This was a fast, fun read that revealed major flaws in Hawkins arguments about a creator. I thought Lennox was honest, thoughtful, and well researched.

  • Wannida Chunarrom
    2019-06-05 18:08

    ฉบับภาษาไทยอ่านไม่สนุก ผู้แปลใช้ศัพท์เข้าใจยาก เนื้อหาในเล่มมีแต่การเปรียบเทียบกับหนังสือที่ S. Hawking เขียน แล้วยกประโยคมาอุปมา ผู้เขียนเชื่อว่ามีพระเจ้าเป็นผู้สร้าง พูดซ้ำกันอย่างนี้ทุกบท ความเห็นส่วนตัวอ่านแล้วไม่ว้าว ทั่วไป

  • Olatomiwa Bifarin
    2019-06-05 18:43

    Dr Lennox communicated, very brilliantly, that the belief that Atheism is (or should be) the default intellectual position is crap!

  • Heavensent1
    2019-06-05 18:40

    God and Stephen Hawking: Whose Design is it Anyway? is a philosophical approach to counter the "there is no god" scientific thought.Author, John Lennox takes a few key issues in Stephen Hawking's thesis and explains them with a philosophical approach. He counters all that the scientific athiest's claim that the world could only have been created through science, physics and mathematical principles. The scientists involved with this theory claim that God is a myth brought about by pagan and heathen cultures in order to tame the masses.Such questions as why is there something rather than nothing, why do we exist, how does the universe behave are among a few of the Hawking's hypothesis that are explained in this book. The author shares his vision and concepts with the reader, answering with his own mathematical basis as comparison. The arguments shared and explored are many each of us has thought about over the course of history.Many insights and examples via historical figures such as Hesoid, Isaac Newton, Galileo, Kepler to name a few are shared with the reader. Their scientific hypothesis and philosophies are shared with the reader to further strengthen the thought that God does exist, something cannot be created from nothing, for even with nothing, it is something.This is a very intellectual read. It is small and concise but heavily loaded with scientific explanations and accounts. If you've read Stephen Hawking's "A Brief History of Time" or "The Grand Design", then you will understand the principles involved with this thesis. The explanations given are sound and justified, backed with important examples via history and science. John Lennox is a mathematician himself and you can feel this as you read his logic concerning God and the Universe. He shows us that Gods existence is more than probable and sets his writing with many fine examples. Lennox believes that science and history are not the only sources to prove God's existence, all one needs to do is look around themselves and come to their own conclusions. All aspects and thoughts of God are based on personal experience and only the individual can truly decide what it is they believe to be true.I would suggest this book for anyone with questions about God's theology and existence. I would also recommend this for anyone who wishes to read an intelligent book about science, God, history and philosophy.

  • Brandy Cross
    2019-05-27 22:54

    I found this 'book' to be poorly organized, aggressive, repetitive, and to put things quite bluntly, egotistical. The entire premise of the book seems to focus on two parts (a) that Stephen Hawking is wrong and (b) that Stephen Hawking definitely said that God does not exist (and is wrong). Considering that the meaning of the phrase used by Hawking is closer to "divine interference is not necessary to create the universe" than "God is not real", many of the arguments in this book are quite simply invalidated. Similarly, taking phrases like "philosophy is dead" and tearing them apart to make it abundantly clear to the reader that Stephen Hawking is wrong reduces the value of the 'book' in that it immediately comes off as more of a schoolboy rivalry than an actual well thought out and planned argument (which I was hoping for). Instead, what you get is a 90 something page essay that is poorly organized at best, veers dramatically off course at several points and spends more time trying to bludgeon the reader over the head with the fact that Stephen Hawking is very much wrong than giving us an idea of how God actually fits into this whole mess. Most of the points could have been made in less than 10 pages without too much simplification. In addition, I found that some points were taken altogether too literally. "Because there is gravity". The intended meaning is not "gravity created the universe" it is "laws of physics allow for the world to be created" and he may very well be right. And where those laws came from is another question entirely. The extremely aggressive beginning tames down a bit going in, but it seems like something you would write in a fit of rage after reading something unpleasant to you. Should you do something's similar, I would highly advise the delete button or taking the time to create something thought provoking rather than using quotes and poorly organized points to prove the fallacy of someone else's argument. This had the potential to be worth reading. It was not.

  • Muhammad Al Banna
    2019-05-31 23:05

    Finished reading John Lennox's book 'God and Stephen Hawking: whose design is it anyway?' Lennox is a professor of Mathematics in Oxford and also a philosopher of science. .From the subtitle of the book it can be supposed what contained it. Yes the book is written to criticize Hawking's book -'The grand design'.Undoubtedly Hawking is one of the genius cosmologist alive. He revealed the whole picture of the universe on a coffee table by his book 'A brief history of time'. But in his latest book 'The Grand Design' he writes some unexpected, illogical, absurd and nonsense claims like - "Philosophy is dead", " Because there is a law of gravity, the universe can and will create itself out of nothing"....... etc. But Lennox espouses eloquently -"Nonsense remains nonsense, even when talked by world-famous scientists"[pp26]Hawking begins the book with the statement -philosophy is dead! He rejects a discipline! Well, but ridiculous is the statement -philosophy is dead itself a metaphysical statement (branch of philosophy) not scientific. Contradictions are going on.... most of the parts of the book deal with philosophical questions, epistemology metaphysics . Hawking said universe can create itself from nothing by gravity. This statement contains three level of contradiction. 1.Something from nothing, 2. Universe can create itself without God! That means X can create X. Does it make sense? , 3. Universe create itself because there is law of gravity! Can laws create anything? Can law of arithmetic creates mony in my wallet ? No, they can only predict 2 taka+ 2 taka will be 4 taka. Nevertheless, law of nature, by definition, surely depends for its own existence on the prior existence of the nature. So how could gravity responsible for the existence of universe? . .Lennox criticizes these claims in his little book. Lennox also points out Hawkings circular argument against miracle and makes multiverse as a defeater of uniformity of nature. Although as a Christian he sympathizes Christian faith in the whole book.

  • Laura
    2019-06-15 22:54

    Title: GOD AND STEPHEN HAWKINGAuthor: John C. LennoxPublisher: Lion HudsonSeptember 2011ISBN: 978-0-7459-5549-0Genre: Nonfiction/science/GodIn response to Stephen Hawking’s The Grand Design, John C. Lennox says, “It is a grandiose claim to have banished God. With such a lot at stake we surely need to ask Hawking to produce evidence to establish his claim. Do his arguments really stand up to close scrutiny? I think we have a right to know.”Hawking has two sets of questions that he listed in the first chapter of his book that Lennox will answer in this book, in several different chapters: > God or the laws of nature?> God or the multiverse?> Whose design is it anyway?> Science and rationality?Hawking claims that the laws of physics themselves brought the universe into being, rather than God. Lennox, an Oxford and mathematician as well as author of God’s Undertaker, takes a closer look at Hawking’s logic. In layman’s terms, Lennox guides us through the key points of Hawking’s arguments and demonstrates that far from disproving a Creator God, they make his existence seem all the more probable. Personally, I share the view of Allan Sandage, who is widely regarded as the father of modern astronomy. Sandage says, “I find it quite improbable that such order came out of chaos. There has to be some organizing principle. God to me is a mystery but is the evidence for the miracle of existence—why there is something rather than nothing.” And I respond, “In the beginning, God created…” Having never questioned the biblical creation account, I find it curious that so many try to disprove God. Why is the first book in the Bible under such attack? Okay, I know why. And I’m glad that there are men out there like Lennox who are willing to take the time to explain why Hawking’s is wrong so those who do question Genesis 1:1 will have the answers. $5.95. 96 pages.

  • Mary Ann
    2019-06-02 21:08

    God and Stephen Hawking; Whose Design Is It Anyway? by John C. Lennox is a small book with a big message. It is written by John C. Lennox as a response to Stephen Hawking's The Grand Design, in which the claim is made that the universe created itself from nothing... that the laws of physics brought the universe into existence rather than being created by God. John C. Lennox shares his views as a fellow scientist and points out that "not all statements by scientists are statements of science, and so do not carry the authority of authentic science even though such authority is often erroneously ascribed to them." And he adds that this applies to himself as well. This is a very informative book and I enjoyed reading it. Although, I found myself having to re-read many parts of it as I it was a bit over my head. That being said... I will read it again as I am very interested in this subject. It is clearly laid out and I did find that I learned a great deal if I took it a bit slower to comprehend what I was reading. I may not retain all that I read, but I will certainly keep this handy for future conversations. I found it to be a valuable resource and I am happy to have had the chance to review it. I hope I did it justice.I recommend this book for anyone interested in this popular debate, regardless of which side you are on.*Litfuse Publicity Group has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for my honest review. ~Thanks!

  • Lynn Dove
    2019-06-17 20:03

    I find it laugh-out-loud humourous that a book of only ninety-six pages can completely and utterly refute all the long-winded and decades-old statements of renowned scientist, physicist and atheist, Stephen Hawking. And yet, John Lennox, an Oxford mathematician and author of "God's Undertaker", guides the reader through Hawking's arguments in a matter-of-factly manner that actually, in the end, has Hawking's own "atheistic" statements come back and well,...bite him!I do not claim to understand all the philosophical,or scientifical theories of the book. At times the headiness of it all bogged me down and I floundered in getting through it, however, there is no disputing that Lennox has written a well researched, well thought out little book that will no doubt raise eyebrows again in the scientific community that tries to dispute the existence of God the Creator.This book will not solve the great debate amongst scientists and Christians, nor will it put to rest all the controversy between atheists and Christians but it definitely delivers a one-two punch, that lends credence to Christianity and effectively uses Hawkings own words to actually acknowledge God's existence! Bravo!

  • Christy Lockstein
    2019-06-19 18:42

    God and Stephen Hawking by John C. Lennox is a reasoned attack on Stephen Hawking's book The Grand Design, as well as his recent statement that "Heaven is a fairy tale..." Lennox, a respected Oxford mathematician defends the idea of a Creator in this slim but powerful volume. Hawking has insisted that any attempt to use God to explain the mysteries of science is flawed from the start, but Lennox gives hope to Christians by using intelligence and reason to counter this claim. Hawking comes across as a well intentioned hypocrite; he insists that philosophy is dead, but uses philosophy to make his point. Hawking also wants the world to believe in theories that can never be proven, while discarding a logic that would allow less twisted and extreme belief. The book is not an easy read. Unfortunately, Lennox's position as a professor often has him pontificating rather than communicating, and it makes the reading sometimes slow going. That said, Lennox gives Christians some powerful ammo against Hawking's attacks on faith, and the book is a must read for anyone wanting to understand just how wrong the brilliant scientist is.