Regular price: $24.95

Free with 30-day trial
Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

Not the Impossible Faith is a tour de force in that genre, dissecting and refuting the oft-repeated claim that Christianity could not have succeeded in the ancient world unless it was true. Though framed as a detailed rebuttal to Christian apologist J.P. Holding (author of The Impossible Faith), Carrier takes a general approach that educates the listener on the history and sociology of the ancient world, answering many questions like: How did Christians approach evidence? Was there a widespread prejudice against the testimony of women? Was resurrection such a radical idea? Who would worship a crucified criminal? And much more.

Written with occasional humor and an easy style, and thoroughly referenced, with many entertaining "gotcha!" moments, Not the Impossible Faith is a must-listen for anyone interested in the origins of Christianity. Richard Carrier, PhD, is an expert in the history of the ancient world and a critic of Christian attempts to distort history in defense of their faith.

©2009 Richard Carrier (P)2013 Pitchstone Publishing

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    77
  • 4 Stars
    40
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    2

Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    75
  • 4 Stars
    31
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    66
  • 4 Stars
    38
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2
Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Nathanael
  • Audubon, NJ, United States
  • 12-28-13

Excellent critique

Any additional comments?

The only thing I didn't like was the fact that he did a lot of arguing from authority; however, I realize that a good deal of it was him just citing ideas that others had before him (so he wouldn't seem like he was stealing other people's ideas). I realize that this is pretty necessary in a book about history, and the book would've been twice as long without saying "this guy said this, and I'm not going to go into why." Still, if he spent more time explaining his strongest arguments (after citing the source) than beating the dead horse that is "The Impossible Faith" by citing argument after argument and example after example, it would've been much more enjoyable I think.<br/><br/>Still, it was an excellent book, and an excellent critique, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone. 100% worth the cost, and then some.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Fish, meet barrel.

In the course of listening to this audiobook I was reminded of Noam Chomsky's systematic, morbidly-fascinating - and somewhat disturbing; 'should I be watching this?' - demolition of B.F. Skinner's behaviourism.

You don't have to have read J.P. Holding's original to enjoy this book. There is a wealth of fascinating material in here, and the context is set up effectively enough to follow the refutation.

Or demolition.

As a happy agnostic - I don't call myself an atheist simply because I really couldn't be bothered feeling obliged to argue over such self-evidently irrational beliefs - Carrier's book was a (slightly guilty) pleasure, with much of historical interest. A Christian would be less likely to enjoy it, obviously, depending on the extent of their ahistoric fervour. But it's notable that reading Carrier and Bart Ehrman has made me MORE inclined to pick up a bible, not less...

It's debatable whether Carrier really should read his own books - mellifluous he ain't - but it's a perfect union of tone and content.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Bloody awful audiobook...

What disappointed you about Not the Impossible Faith?

Although I personally concur with much if not all of what the author says, I have to tell you that, as an audiobook this is like having a sheet of cardboard in place of a steak. It's dry, and the fact that it's a response to another argument that we are not a party to makes it seem 'whiney'. The description is accurate but you won't find much of interest here. <br/><br/>What would have made a much better book is to give the same information without acknowledging that other author and his faults. Trying to tell some sort of coherent story rather than a point by point refutation of some other guy's weak argument would at least make the book worth reading by people other than those involved in these sorts of pissing contests. <br/><br/>I respect that the author is a phd etc and that his information seems good and well researched. His logic seems equally well done. But as a book, as a writer, this is pretty bad listening. Give it a pass.

14 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

I leaned a lot

I didn't expect as effective an education into the world of 1st century Rome. Although Holding's hypothesis is so absurd today it required no debunk, this book does explain why Christianity was appealing in the early days of the Christian movement, before it was mandated or even sanctioned.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Evidence wins again over apologetics

Richard Carrier makes an overwhelmingly thorough and convincing argument that Christianity had the right message, audience, and good fortunes to become a successful world religion without any supernatural aid or even historical truth.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Fair, exhaustive, and thoroughly researched.

In decades to come this will be regarded as one of the most important books of our time.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Truth made simple.

All the facts laid out chronologically, building a much better case for reasonable doubt than anyone has ever done.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Wow

Every other book against Christianity looks pathetic compared to this book. A great listen or tead

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Origins of Christianity

Excellent, evidence based, overview of the origins of Christianity.

Aside from this being a rebuttal to a feeble claim, it also presents the reader with background and context for each piece of evidence.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Michael
  • deltona, FL, United States
  • 01-17-15

Very well researched book.

I enjoyed this book it was very thorough. Well researched the author did a great job. I felt like I was getting a lot of very good information.

Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Kevin casey
  • 08-28-15

Well researched

This book as well as countering the arguments put forward by Christians as to the evidence for the resurrection was also a great book about Roman culture in the first two centuries. I enjoyed listening to this book immensely and will revisit it in the not too distant future