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Ep. 305 An Interdisciplinary Commentary on the Gospel Accounts of Jesus Christ: Installment 2, Jesus as Logos

Bob continues his miniseries, focusing on John 1: 1-5. Bob makes the case that we should be marveling at the unreasonable effectiveness of semantics in the social sciences. There is meaning packed into every field of human inquiry, and this sheds light on the prologue to the gospel of John.

Mentioned in the Episode and Other Links of Interest:

About the author, Robert

Christian and economist, Chief Economist at infineo, and Senior Fellow with the Mises Institute.


  1. Lawrence on 01/10/2024 at 7:40 PM

    On the lighter side, if you look past deep-in-the-weeds analysis of the embedded idea of patterns of meaning grounded in language at its very root concept or intuited truth, toward the end of the podcast, Bob seems to reveal the potential of ChatGPT to reverse the Tower of Babel language crackup that has created a barrier to human communication over the past several millennia. To wit, he discusses to capability of ChatGPT to speak (simultaneously?) to every person on the planet in their own language! The plot is revealed!

    • Lawrence on 01/10/2024 at 7:44 PM

      Sorry about the typo:
      …discusses the capability of ChatGPT (not …discusses “to” capability of ChatGPT…).

  2. Max on 01/14/2024 at 12:07 PM

    I love that you are starting with John 1:1-5. That came to live for me for the first time watching The Chosen. This clip is the part you are reading and it is so powerful as they weave it together line by line with Genesis. It feels like this reading was his inspiration. Watching him tear up at that moment just gets me.

    • Robert Murphy on 01/14/2024 at 7:27 PM

      Oh wow Max, you’re right that was totally the same thing I was going for.

  3. Dave H on 01/15/2024 at 9:55 PM

    On “the unreasonable effectiveness of X”:

    What if I were to say to you that if we played a game of 3x3x3 tic-tac-toe, choosing center-center was unreasonably effective? Would you find that to be some profound statement about the nature of reality and math, or would you just accept that, since we are talking about a 2 player competitive game, either SOMETHING must be “unreasonably effective” or the game itself must result in a tie when played perfectly?

    Likewise, I don’t get the fascination with claims about math being unreasonably effective at describing the world in which we live. Math, in fact, can be tweaked to do pretty much anything we want it to. There are mathematical systems that are unreasonably BAD at describing the world in which we live. We just don’t use those systems to describe the world because.. well.. they’re bad at it. If the world were different, we would use a different mathematical system to describe it.

    Now you might ask, why is the world such that ANY mathematical system can describe it, as opposed to just pure random chaos? And I would ask you, how do you know that it’s not just pure random chaos? In a truly random system, given enough time and space, all possible realities will eventually come and go. How are you able to rule out the idea that we are just in a pocket of perceived order inside a wider mass of random chaos? I submit that you can’t rule it out. And given that “pure random chaos” needs no further explanation, the way supernatural creators do, seems to me that this is the most likely reality.

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