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If the Bible is the inerrant word of an inerrant god, then who really introduced evil into the world and why? If the Earth is only six to ten thousand years old, why is there such overwhelming, logically indisputable evidence of evolution?

Was Descartes wrong, and God was a deceiver, after all?

M. Jefferson (Jeff) Hale, a humanist professor of evolutionary biology, remains an unrepentant skeptic as the biblical Tribulation begins.

Wars, super storms, famine, disease, and food riots sweep the earth. Politicians, frightened by signs of the End of Days, scramble to make laws proving to God that they are worthy of salvation. A nationwide purge of liberal educators is implemented, and Jeff is on their hit list.

Jeff is curious about world events but unmoved by the mania and the purge. His only concerns are to enhance the intellectual maturity of his students, resolve his romantic ambivalence, and come to terms with the death of his estranged, fundamentalist father.

Yet, Jeff knows the answer to a question unasked, and as even as zealous forces move against him, he becomes the focus of an extraordinary event unforeseen even by God.

“The Empathy Imperative” is a philosophical/spiritual novel written in the spirit of the BBC/WGBH Boston production, “God On Trial,” a play written by Frank Cottrell Boyce, based on an event told by Elie Wiesel in his book, “The Trial of God.”

Paperback and Digital: (free chapter available)

ISBN-13: 9781626463226
Publisher:, Inc.
Publication date: 2/15/2013
Pages: 452

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. N℮üґ☼N☮☂℮ṧ
    Apr 04, 2015 @ 17:17:58

    Max, this is superb! I’d like to promote your book (as a courtesy) on my blog. Can I upload the cover of your book (the image) and put it in the left column with a link to Amazon, this post or your promotional website?



  2. BroadBlogs
    Apr 14, 2015 @ 13:35:25

    Sounds like an interesting book. Having been raised on one view of God, I was intrigued to find out that different peoples have different notions of God – or even the gods – and how all-seeing and all-powerful they are. Or not.



  3. Max T. Furr
    Apr 14, 2015 @ 14:52:22

    Thanks Georgia, the novel incorporates many questions I had years ago that prompted me to eventually enroll in college and study philosophy, world religions, and anthropology (particularly paleoanthropology).

    The subjects of which you mentioned–since I emerged from Army Basic Training–have gripped me almost daily. Finding well reasoned philosophical and/or scientific answers became my grand obsession.

    I found the popular idea that the god of the OT was omniscient, omnipotent and omnibenevolent is completely inconsistent with logic and with the stories of the OT that clearly contradicts the notion. My overriding question, then, became; Why do so many people insist on believing that which is demonstrably unbelievable? At times, I wish my major, or one of them, had been in psychology.

    Here is a short excerpt taken from a thought soliloquy by my lead character in chapter 2:

    Terry asked me, “How is it that Muslims believe as they do?” What Terry wanted to know, of course, was why do they not believe the same as he.

    The question comes up at least once a year, usually in Introduction to World Religions, referencing one theology or another. The form of my reply is always the same—that some young adherent to Islam would be right to ask the same of his professor, How is it that Christians believe as they do?

    It’s all a matter of where one is born—into which society, which religion, which family. A child is born neither Christian, nor Jew, nor Muslim, nor atheist, nor an adherent to any other brand of religious or philosophical order. A child is born a human being with an ability to learn, and from this raw material society builds her walls of nationalism and religious certitude.

    Terry’s question is always a good one even if advanced, as evidenced by the tone of his voice, condescendingly. It’s good because it opens an interactive dialogue with the class into concepts of motivation, action, and consequence—a discussion about determinism, fate, predestination, and free will. What is it that causes people to think and act as they do?
    If you would like to read the preface, which explains my reasons for writing the novel, you can find it at The preface begins a short way down the page. 😀



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