mid-week Apologetics booster (10-16-2014)

I hope you’re having a fantastic week!

  1. The thought occurred to me while reading Job 38 this week that in this passage of the LORD speaking to Job, you could substitute any skeptic/atheist in place of the name Job.  For example:  Then the LORD answered [Richard Dawkins] out of the storm. He said:  “Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge? Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me. Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?” Job 38:1-5
  2. Fair Mormon is a Mormon site meant to answer all the challenges being raised against Mormonism.  This is an article/site debunking some of the information on Fair Mormon:  http://cesletter.com/debunking-fairmormon/witnesses.html#summary There is a ton more on this page, but even this summary is compelling enough:

    Despite FAIR’s rebuttal to the Witnesses section of the CES Letter, major concerns regarding the credibility of the Book of Mormon Witnesses remain.  For instance, all 11 witnesses to the Book of Mormon shared a common worldview of second sight, magic, and treasure digging. All of the living Book of Mormon witnesses, except Oliver Cowdery, later accepted James Strang’s prophetic claim of being Joseph’s true successor and joined his church. All witnesses except Martin Harris were related to Joseph Smith or David Whitmer. Oliver Cowdery exhibited behavior that calls his credibility into question, such as attempting to use a divining rod for translating the a portion of the Book of Mormon (a fact which Joseph Smith later attempted to cover up by changing the wording from the Book of Commandments). Oliver was once excommunicated from the Church for, among other things, “falsely insinuating that [Joseph Smith] was guilty of adultery” and for “dishonestly retaining notes after they had been paid.” A letter written by Sidney Rigdon and signed by 84 members of the Church wrote that Olivery Cowder and David Whimer (among others) cheated and defrauded the saints out of their property “by every art and stratagem which wickedness could invent.”  Martin Harris can be regarded generally as a gullible and superstitious person. He joined at least five churches before joining Mormonism and joined many more, including James Strang’s sect, after Joseph’s death. At various times throughout his life, he stated that he had conversed with Jesus (who had taken the form of a deer), that he saw the devil with his four feet and donkey head, that he had chipped off a chunk of a stone box that would mysteriously move beneath the ground to avoid capture, and that a creature appeared on his chest which no one else could see.  Martin Harris also gave conflicting accounts of his experiences with the golden plates. He recounted on multiple occasions, for example, that he didn’t see the plates with his naked eye but rather with his spiritual eye. Moreover, Joseph Smith himself once wrote of Martin that he “gave loose to all kinds of abominations, lying, cheating, swindling, and all kinds of debauchery.”  David Whitmer likewise suffers from credibility problems. For example, after leaving the LDS Church, he testified that God spoke to him, just as God had spoken to the three Book of Mormon Witnesses, telling him to separate himself from the LDS church. Further, David Whitmer, as with Martin Harris, gave contradictory accounts of the events giving rise to his Book of Mormon testimony. For example, he once recounted that the angel who showed him the plates “had no appearance or shape” and that he saw the angel with “impressions.” In a separate account, he wrote that he and the other witnesses had experienced the angelic visitation “while we were yet in the Spirit.” Finally, David Whitmer was also included in Sidney Rigdon’s letter, described above, stating that David Whitmer had cheated and defrauded the saints out of their property “by every art and stratagem which wickedness could invent.”  Given these facts, one cannot help but seriously question the credibility of the Book of Mormon witnesses.

  3. When we fail to answer someone’s questions and objections, we become just one more reason for them to disbelieve. – Walter Martin
  4. The Rosetta Stone, SETI, and the Existence of God: http://apologetics-notes.comereason.org/2014/10/the-rosetta-stone-seti-and-existence-of.html
  5. City of Houston Demands Pastors Turn over Sermons (Yes, the MAYOR actually wants to inspect sermons.): http://standupforthetruth.com/2014/10/city-houston-demands-pastors-turn-sermons/
  6. Skeptics must provide more than alternative theories to the Resurrection; they must provide first-century evidence for those theories.  – Gary Habermas (quoted in, I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist)
  7. Handling an Objection: “I love the moral teachings of Jesus but I don’t think He is divine.” Here is a quote from this article “First, since the person already admires the teachings of Jesus, I point to the blind spot in their thinking. First, it is not the moral teachings of Jesus that is the message. Rather, Jesus is the message!”  http://chab123.wordpress.com/2013/07/22/handling-an-objection-i-love-the-moral-teachings-of-jesus-but-i-dont-think-he-is-divine/
  8. Like it or not, Every Christian is an Apologist: http://www.saintsandsceptics.org/like-it-or-not-we-are-all-apologists/
  9. Do We Really Need to Teach Our Kids Apologetics When God is in Control Anyway?  http://christianmomthoughts.com/do-we-really-need-to-teach-our-kids-apologetics-when-god-is-in-control-anyway/
  10. Police Officer Sued For Pitching Christianity to Reckless Driver Instead of Issuing Ticket: http://allchristiannews.com/draft1/#.VDqC1PV-bDc.facebook

 

Have a blessed week!

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