Conversation with a Skeptic on a Local Facebook Group Comments Thread

Someone posed the following question on a local Facebook group for our community:

If you could ask God any one question and you knew He’d give you an answer right now, what would you ask?

What follows is one of many conversations that occurred in the comments for this post:

Her:  Who created you?

Me: https://www.gotquestions.org/who-created-God.html

Her:  how many angels fit on the head of a pin?

Me:  I doubt this hypothetical question is of sincere interest to you, so, I will leave it alone

Her:   yes, philosophy and religion are extremely interesting and collide in all kinds of pithy ways. Religion has many positive social structures and fills some peoples’ needs for making order out of what they perceive as disorder. It’s all interesting to discuss if you can move beyond the trite.

Me:   Yes, Christianity has contributed greatly to many essential areas of society (e.g. origin of hospitals, many Christian scientists such as Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Pasteur, institutions of higher learning such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Oxford had Christian beginnings and many other things). I agree that following Christian teachings has benefits for people in terms of stable families and moral behavior. But that’s not the main point. As C.S. Lewis stated, “Christianity is a statement which, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The one thing it cannot be is moderately important.” So, if it is not true, I might as well be golfing on Sunday mornings   And yes, I strive to “move beyond the trite”. I like to concern myself with things that matter (eternally), and think that we all should do likewise. I think many (including my pre-conversion self) are more concerned about planning the next vacation or retirement than thinking about what will happen when they die. I’m open to a dialogue on these topics that really matter. Have a great day!

Her:   why be concerned about what will happen when you die? If you’re a believer, you should have no concern at all about what happens. Plan that vacation and go play golf on Sunday. 

Me:   I personally am not concerned (or “worried”) about what will happen when I die. That issue was settled for me when I became a Christian, so yes you’re right – I have no concern, I’m confident about my eternal destination. Rather, what I was referring to were those people who have not yet made that decision. I, myself, am an adult convert. I didn’t grow up in the church, but became a Christian well into adulthood, being married with children. So, I was relying on my own experience, describing what my priorities were “pre-conversion”. I was there at one point in my life and am not claiming any superiority of those who’ve not made that decision yet. I’m just one beggar trying to tell another beggar where I’ve found food!

Her:  people will always question and challenge the things they can’t see and know. That’s a part of both religion and philosophy, and all good.

Then, on another question in the same FB thread, the same person replied to my answer to this question:

How did life originate?

Me:  The evidence suggests that abiogenesis (the theory that life originated from non-living material [non-life]) is highly improbable. According to Stephen Meyer, the odds of getting a functional protein of 150 amino acids by chance is no better than 1 in 10 to the 164th power. Now consider that there are 10 to the 80th power elementary particles in the entire universe. So, life could not have originated “on it’s own”. Life shows many evidences of design, therefore the most reasonable conclusion is that life was originated by an intelligent designer, who we call God.

Her:  well, the odds of life being created by ‘god’ are even less! I’d like to see your statistics about that for comparison.

Me:   Design requires a designer. Life is obviously designed. DNA is more sophisticated than any programming language that human beings have created. Creation requires a creator:

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause

2. The universe began to exist

3. Therefore the universe has a cause.

This syllogism is known as the Kalam Cosmological argument for God’s existence.

The universe didn’t “pop out of nothing”. The effect (the universe) tells us something about the cause.

The bottom line is this: Since there was an absolute beginning to space, time and matter, it’s reasonable to conclude that the cause of the universe must be spaceless, timeless and immaterial. This cause must also be personal in order to choose to create, intelligent to create such a fine-tuned universe, and powerful to create out of nothing. A spaceless, timeless, immaterial, personal, intelligent, powerful Being is exactly what theists call “God”.

Her:   keep thinking! We know very little and eventually you can find calm in that

Me:  sorry, but I will have to respectfully disagree. We know many things, according to the same standard of proof in our legal system, “beyond a reasonable doubt”. I don’t find calm in not knowing, but rather in trusting in God who I have good reasons to believe exists. Again, I will quote C.S. Lewis, who I believe is very helpful here: “Christ never meant that we were to remain children in intelligence: on the contrary. He told us to be not only ‘as harmless as doves’, but also ‘as wise as serpents’. He wants a child’s heart, but a grown-up’s head. He wants us to be simple, single-minded, affectionate, and teachable, as good children are; but He also wants every bit of intelligence we have to be alert at its job, and in first-class fighting trim. The fact that you are giving money to a charity does not mean that you need not try to find out whether that charity is a fraud or not. The fact that what you are thinking about is God Himself (for example, when you are praying) does not mean that you can be content with the same babyish ideas which you had when you were a five-year-old. It is, of course, quite true that God will not love you any the less, or have less use for you, if you happen to have been born with a very second-rate brain. He has room for people with very little sense, but He wants everyone to use what sense they have. “. Have a great day and I urge you to think deeply about the things I’ve said in our interactions in this excellent thread!

Her:  excellent! Yes, I hope you find peace and comfort in the unknown. Scientifically and intellectually speaking, we ‘know’ virtually nothing at all. That makes life exciting! And full of experiences of all kinds. You don’t even know what your brain is going to be thinking about 20 minutes from now. Life is a grand adventure.

Me:  you say “Scientifically and intellectually speaking, we know virtually nothing at all”. I would like to respectfully point out something about it by asking you a question… Is that something you claim to “know”?

Her:  yes, I definitely know that I know almost nothing, compared to what there is to learn and ‘know.’ And, what is known by others is vast, but almost nothing compared to what we would like to know.

Me:  so, you must be aware that your statement is what is called a “self-refuting statement”. It is a statement that doesn’t live up to its own standard. It would be like saying I can’t speak a single word in the English language, yet using English to communicate that idea. Self-refuting statements cannot possibly be true.

Her:   lol, keep thinking! You are a reader and learn from others, and adopt others’ ideas that ring true to you. That’s super interesting. We use what we ‘know’ to try to understand what we don’t ‘know.’ Makes sense to us within the confines of so little knowledge.

mid-week apologetics booster (7-15-2021)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 2000) from Nuggets:

If there were no Trinity, there could be no Incarnation, no objective Redemption, and therefore no salvation; for there would be no one capable of acting as mediator between God and man. – Unnamed Theologian quoted in “2002 Surprising Things About God and the Bible”

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Mathematical Challenges to Darwin’s Theory of Evolution – YouTube – Based on new evidence and knowledge that functioning proteins are extremely rare, should Darwin’s theory of evolution be dismissed, dissected, developed or replaced with a theory of intelligent design? Has Darwinism really failed? Peter Robinson discusses it with David Berlinski, David Gelernter, and Stephen Meyer, who have raised doubts about Darwin’s theory in their two books and essay, respectively The Deniable Darwin, Darwin’s Doubt, and Giving Up Darwin (published in the Claremont Review of Books).: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=noj4phMT9OE
  2. Inoculating the Masses: What in the world is Critical Race Theory? Women in Apologetics: https://womeninapologetics.com/inoculating-the-masses-what-in-the-world-is-critical-race-theory/
  3. Render to God – It’s time to make a shift. Blending into the world around us is no longer an option for the church. The culture rejects the Christian worldview and won’t be appeased by anything short of total ideological surrender, so it’s time for us to get counter-cultural.: https://www.str.org/w/render-to-god
  4. Religious Faith Is Not Inherently Blind Bread & Fish: https://breadnfishcom.wordpress.com/2021/06/22/no-blind-faith-here/
  5. How An Atheist Scholar Misleads Millions Of People – YouTube – (I think everyone should listen to this) Bart Ehrman has convinced more people to reject the Christian faith than almost anyone alive today. But he has done so largely through being very misleading. I’m going to provide some solid examples of this as it relates to the crucifixion of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark because I think there is a lot of benefit in dealing with misleading claims about the Bible. I’m doing a lot of apologetics related stuff here at the end of this series on the Gospel of Mark and I hope you find it faith building and inspiring!: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2ne3ndnVQk
  6. What does the Bible say about saving for retirement? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/saving-for-retirement.html
  7. How are we to live our lives in light of Christs return? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/live-lives-Christ-return.html
  8. Here’s the question: Does faith save you? To help you think carefully about the answer, let me suggest an illustration. Pretend for a moment that you are a diabetic on the verge of diabetic coma. Pretend also that I present you with a hypodermic syringe and a small vial that I said was insulin. Would you trust me to give you an injection to save your life? I think you already see the thrust of illustration. my First, you know (or at least have heard) that the Bible teaches salvation by faith. Second, the illustration shows a clear contrast between mere belief and active trust the point I’ve just been making). You already believe that insulin can give you relief. But you remain in danger until you take a step of faith and actively entrust yourself to my care. So I suspect you would take me up on my offer. If you did, however, you would be dead. Here’s why: All the sincerity of your childlike trust could not change the fact that the vial in my illustration does not really contain insulin, only saline. You had genuine faith, to be sure- fiducia, trust, belief in action. But you would be dead, nonetheless.: https://www.str.org/w/truth-is-a-strange-sort-of-fiction-the-postmodern-turn-part-2
  9. Centuries after Christ: Was the New Testament written long after Jesus?: https://carm.org/the-bible/was-the-new-testament-written-hundreds-of-years-after-christ/

“You will all fall away,” Jesus told them, “for it is written: ” ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’ But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.” Peter declared, “Even if all fall away, I will not.” “I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “today–yes, tonight–before the rooster crows twice you yourself will disown me three times.” But Peter insisted emphatically, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the others said the same. – Mark 14:27-31

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (7-1-2021)

Good morning friends,

Here is a quote (of over 2000) from Nuggets:

In high school and college Christian teenagers are intellectually assaulted with every manner of non-Christian worldview coupled with an overwhelming relativism. If parents are not intellectually engaged with their faith and do not have sound arguments for Christian theism and good answers to their children’s questions, then we are in real danger of losing our youth. It’s no longer enough to teach our children simply Bible stories; they need doctrine and apologetics. It’s hard to understand how people today can risk parenthood without having studied apologetics.

William Lane Craig

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. A Reply to Bart Ehrman’s Defense of Jesus, Interrupted on the MythVision Podcast: https://crossexamined.org/a-reply-to-bart-ehrmans-defense-of-jesus-interrupted-on-the-mythvision-podcast/
  2. The Fossils Still Say No: Global Flood Solves Permian Perplexities | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/the-fossils-still-say-no-global-flood-permian/
  3. The First Question to Ask of an Ancient Holy Book: Is It Ancient? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/the-first-question-to-ask-of-an-ancient-holy-book-is-it-ancient/
  4. The Scientific Kalam Cosmological Argument | Popular Writings | Reasonable Faith In this lecture at Georgia Tech Dr. Craig focuses on the scientific evidence for the premises of the Kalam cosmological argument for a Personal Creator of the universe. The source of this argument is from al-Ghazali, a medieval Muslim theologian from the 12th century who lived in Persia, or modern day Iran: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/popular-writings/science-theology/the-scientific-kalam-cosmological-argument/
  5. Why is there Something Rather Than Nothing? – The first question that should rightly be asked is, Why is there something rather than nothing?’: https://reasonabletheology.org/why-is-there-something-rather-than-nothing-leibniz-contingency-argument/
  6. The Gilgamesh Epic – A problem for the flood? Rational Faith: https://rationalfaith.com/2021/06/the-gilgamesh-epic-a-problem-for-the-flood/
  7. On the Origin of Articles | Biblical Science Institute: https://biblicalscienceinstitute.com/apologetics/on-the-origin-of-articles/
  8. Did Josephus Write About Jesus, Or Was It Entirely A Forgery?: https://thereforegodexists.com/did-josephus-write-about-jesus-or-was-it-entirely-a-forgery/
  9. Science Confirms Biblical Creation – Dr. Jason Lisle – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qjrTSra0pQ
  10. Is the Jesus Story Stupid and the Resurrection Totally Mythical? – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h58RvduPnac
  11. Where is God in the midst of suffering? Frank Turek – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-u8L3VSnsTk
  12. How do we help kids who doubt their faith? Let’s ask a skeptic! – Dr. Sean McDowell YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s2_m0YX21YI
  13. Did James, the Brother of Jesus, Die as a Martyr? | Sean McDowell: https://seanmcdowell.org/blog/did-james-the-brother-of-jesus-die-as-a-martyr
  14. Does Secular Historian Josephus Give Historical Corroboration to the New Testament? | Thomistic Bent – 20.9.1: https://humblesmith.wordpress.com/2017/11/06/does-secular-historian-josephus-give-historical-corroboration-to-the-new-testament/
  15. Why It’s Important to Inoculate (Rather Than Isolate) Our Young People | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/why-its-important-to-inoculate-rather-than-isolate-our-young-people/
  16. Really Interesting Theological Discussion Ruined By Someone Pulling Out A Bible Verse | The Babylon Bee: https://babylonbee.com/news/really-interesting-theological-discussion-ruined-by-someone-pulling-out-a-bible-verse
  17. Atheist Myths and Scientism Probe Ministries: https://probe.org/atheist-myths-and-scientism/
  18. Johns Gospel May Have Been Last, But It Wasn’t Late | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/johns-gospel-may-have-been-last-but-it-wasnt-late/

When David finished saying this, Saul asked, “Is that your voice, David my son?” And he wept aloud. “You are more righteous than I,” he said. “You have treated me well, but I have treated you badly. You have just now told me of the good you did to me; the LORD delivered me into your hands, but you did not kill me. When a man finds his enemy, does he let him get away unharmed? May the LORD reward you well for the way you treated me today. I know that you will surely be king and that the kingdom of Israel will be established in your hands. Now swear to me by the LORD that you will not cut off my descendants or wipe out my name from my father’s family. ” So David gave his oath to Saul. Then Saul returned home, but David and his men went up to the stronghold. 1 Samuel 24:16-22

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (4-8-2021)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1900) from Nuggets:

In His grace, God freely gives salvation to those who believe in Jesus. We cannot earn this gift, nor do we deserve it. Our Father does notice our good works, though. And He promises to reward us according to what we have done for Him. True service occurs when we allow the Lord to work through us for His glory and honor. – Charles Stanley

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. 10 Important Questions for the Jehovah’s Witness Worldview | Cold Case Christianity: http://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/some-important-questions-for-the-jehovahs-witness-worldview/
  2. Blood Clotting Remains a Mousetrap for Darwin | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2020/12/blood-clotting-remains-a-mousetrap-for-darwin/
  3. James Tour: Molecules Don’t Care About Life | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2020/09/james-tour-molecules-dont-care-about-life/
  4. What about evidence from other religions? Q&A session with Dr. Frank Turek: https://youtu.be/mGxdBA3AAho
  5. MIT professor finds meaning of life in god, not science-the Veritas Forum: https://youtu.be/bYoAN6m1sec
  6. Is there proof outside the Bible that Jesus existed? Nabil Qureshi answers in a Q&A: https://youtu.be/xGQ_5rSBwIQ
  7. Where do morals come from? Living Waters: https://youtu.be/ANSPIz4TMhw
  8. John MacArthur questions Robby Zacharias’s salvation: https://youtu.be/L2tpwVrBEz0
  9. What is faith?: https://youtu.be/FLzBOnlvN4w
  10. The Bee Explains: Catholics Vs. Protestants | The Babylon Bee: https://babylonbee.com/news/the-bee-explains-catholics-vs-protestants
  11. Muslim converts to Christianity after realizing the Bible is true: https://youtu.be/Ry8K4sK3uDc
  12. An Introduction to Christian Ethics – In philosophical ethics (the world), the end goal in life is happiness. But in Christian ethics (the Church), the end goal is holiness. That distinction often determines which choice we make.- YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkac-R-C8MA
  13. If you get canceled, like paleontologist Gunter Bechly, where do you go? Uncommon Descent: https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/if-you-get-canceled-like-paleontologist-gunter-bechly-where-do-you-go/
  14. James Huntsman’s fraud suit is hardly the only one against the LDS Church. Can any of them win? Laura Gaddy, who grew up as a devout Latter-day Saint in North Carolina, says she felt her surety in church principles begin to unravel in 2015, when leaders pulled Joseph Smiths seer stone from a vault and showed it to the media. For her, according to court documents, the event signaled that the faiths founding prophet had not translated the Book of Mormon, the church’s signature scripture, directly from gold plates inscribed with reformed Egyptian characters, but instead had dictated the narrative from a stone with his head in a hat. Gaddy came to be deeply troubled by what she saw as similar dismaying misrepresentations, according to her lawsuit, over the church’s translated Book of Abraham and over Smiths own character, leading to a crisis in her faith. That crisis brought her to a Utah federal court in August 2019. Her initial lawsuit accused church leaders of misrepresenting its foundational facts and continuing conduct of concealing access to those facts as part of perpetuating an alleged fraud to ensure, among other things, that members tithing contributions would continue. Gaddy’s case also cites specific examples of church statements that appear to contradict reality. But while Huntsman’s pleadings pinpoint the church’s alleged business dealings versus how they were portrayed dating to 2003, Gaddy offers evidence reaching back nearly a century. New filings in her suit include a host of exhibits drawn from the church’s historical record, including purported evidence of Joseph Smith practicing polygamy and being labeled a disorderly person in 1826 in connection with a form of deception related to treasure hunting. These are facts that have been hidden from members, Burningham said. These are not beliefs. These are facts (Note – I have downloaded this content in case they take down the article): https://www.sltrib.com/religion/2021/04/04/james-huntsman-isnt-first/
  15. Scholars turn anew to an old question: If Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon, how did he do it?: https://www.sltrib.com/religion/2020/09/28/scholars-turn-anew-an-old/
  16. William Lane Craig debates James Crossley on the resurrection of Jesus | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2021/04/04/william-lane-craig-debates-james-crossley-on-the-resurrection-of-jesus-11/
  17. Distant Starlight Unlikely Solutions Part 2: ASC – Questions for Dr. Lisle Rational Faith: https://rationalfaith.com/2021/03/distant-starlight-unlikely-solutions-part-2-asc-questions-for-dr-lisle/
  18. The Theological Roots of Capitalism: A Conversation with Economist Benjamin M. Friedman – AlbertMohler.com: https://albertmohler.com/2021/03/24/benjamin-friedman
  19. Largest Canyons Were Formed by the Receding Flood | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/largest-canyons-were-formed-by-the-receding-flood/
  20. The resurrection argument that changed a generation of scholars – Gary Habermas: https://youtu.be/ay_Db4RwZ_M
  21. China Is Detaining Christians In Secret Facilities Forcing Them To Renounce Their Faith Or Be Tortured: Report | The Daily Wire: https://www.dailywire.com/news/china-is-detaining-christians-in-secret-facilities-forcing-them-to-renounce-their-faith-or-be-tortured-report
  22. Origin of Life’s Purple Unicorn: Protocells | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2021/04/origin-of-lifes-purple-unicorn-protocells/
  23. Refutation of Atheist Paul Carlson’s 51 Bible Contradictions | Dave Armstrong: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/davearmstrong/2021/04/refutation-of-atheist-paul-carlsons-51-bible-contradictions.html
  24. God of Love? We now turn our attention to answering the accusation that the God of the Old Testament is not a God of love. | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/hermeneutics/god-of-love/
  25. Where did Paul get the idea that the Messiah died for our sins according to the Scriptures in 1 Corinthians 15: 3? THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2020/12/27/where-did-paul-get-the-idea-that-the-messiah-died-for-our-sins-according-to-the-scriptures-in-1-corinthians-15-3/amp/

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day –and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:7-8

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (4-1-2021)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1900) from Nuggets:

Focusing on Christ is neither a natural reaction nor an easy one. Our instinct is to dwell on the situation at hand, searching for solutions or stewing over the pain and difficulty. As a result, troubles look scary and overwhelm us with a sense of defeat. However, fear and defeat cannot live long in a heart that trusts the Lord. I’m not saying you’ll forget what you’re going through, but you can choose to dwell on His provision and care instead. – Charles Stanley

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Who’s Waiting for Your Kids? In a few short years, they will leave the safety of your home and church and head off to college. Who will they meet? What ideas will they encounter? What moral choices will they face? For most adults, it’s been quite a few years since they’ve set foot on a college campus. Let us bring you up-to-speed on who and what is waiting for your kids – Stand to Reason Blog: https://str.typepad.com/weblog/2012/10/whos-waiting-for-your-kids.html
  2. Who’s Waiting for You? When you leave the safety of a Christian home or youth group and head off to college and work, are you ready to meet people who are hostile to the Christian faith? Are you prepared to meet their challenges? – STR Quick-Reference App: https://subsplash.com/strquickreference/media/mi/+bd15cbe
  3. Deeper Teaching in Apologetics and Theology for Youth – Stand to Reason Blog: https://str.typepad.com/weblog/2015/10/deeper-teaching-in-apologetics-and-theology-for-youth.html
  4. Taking the Heat – According to Jesus, we should expect the world to be upset with us. Yes, even if Christians are the most loving people imaginable. Why? Because the world suppresses the truth in its sin. Unbelievers trip over Jesus because He is a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.: https://www.str.org/w/taking-the-heat
  5. Four reasons to think that atheism is inconsistent with scientific progress | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2021/03/24/four-reasons-to-think-that-atheism-is-inconsistent-with-scientific-progress-2/
  6. A Case for Creation: Session 5, Part 2 Global Flood Evidence from the Grand Canyon and beyond Truth, Faith and Reason: https://truthfaithandreason.com/a-case-for-creation-session-5-part-2-global-flood-evidence-from-the-grand-canyon-and-beyond/
  7. The Shocking Truth Behind Jehovah’s Witnesses | Way of the Master: Season 3, Ep. 32 – YouTube: https://youtu.be/cnpl6gRjNOY
  8. Can People Get Out of Hell? https://youtu.be/CVQlAdG6Spw
  9. The Evidence Study Bible (Beige-Brown-Leather): http://store.livingwaters.com/the-evidence-bible-beige-brown.html
  10. Interview of Nancy Pearcey by Sean McDowell: https://youtu.be/8bIJ25Snz04
  11. What’s in an apologetics book? Let’s look at the table of contents of my favorite introduction to Christian apologetics, which is “Is God Just a Human Invention?” written by Sean McDowell and Jonathan Morrow. In that book, you will find 18 topics… | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2021/03/27/whats-in-an-apologetics-book-2/
  12. Speaking Up or Keeping Silent in Science Class – Scripture clearly states that at certain times silence is a virtue. Yet at other times remaining silent is wrong, cowardly, and traitorous. How can we know when to keep silence and when to speak? | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/public-school/religion-in-schools/speaking-up-or-keeping-silent-in-science-class/
  13. Surviving Secular College – In addition to the normal academic pressures faced by all students, the consistent Christian must learn to be discerning about the views and interpretations expressed by his or her professors. | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/college/surviving-secular-college/
  14. Who divided the Bible into chapters and verses? Why and when was it done? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/divided-Bible-chapters-verses.html
  15. Are Faith and Reason Compatible? A lot of Christians think that faith and reason are at opposite ends of the spectrum; that reason is used to get knowledge on one side, and on the other side are the things that you don’t have good reasons for like faith. There is a sense that Christians in faith are leaping in the dark and believing ridiculous things because this is all that we have available to us. If we use reason and are thoughtful about our faith, somehow we are not doing what God wants. – Stand to Reason Blog: https://str.typepad.com/weblog/2011/12/are-faith.html
  16. Why I’m a Christian – I see myself as an evangelical (lower case) Christian (uppercase) apologist. I think every Christian is an apologist to some degree. No, not a professional apologist like Rob Bowman, William Lane Craig, or Mike Licona, but we all have formulated some degree of warrant or justification for our faith. Just like everyone is a theologian, everyone is also an apologist. However, this does not mean that we are good apologists! Credo House Ministries: https://credohouse.org/blog/why-im-a-christian
  17. Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/bad-things-good-people.html
  18. ONE SOLITARY LIFE -JESUS CHRIST He was born in an obscure village: http://spreadjesus.org/1221-one-solitary-life-jesus-christ.html
  19. Ehrman’s Problem 4: Why Won’t We Abuse Free Will in Heaven? | Clay Jones: https://clayjones.net/2012/01/ehrman%e2%80%99s-problem-4-why-won%e2%80%99t-we-abuse-free-will-in-heaven/
  20. Early Christianity Overview: The Ante-Nicene Era and the Apostles’ Churches: https://www.christian-history.org/early-christianity-2.html
  21. Evolution: not a Theory | Biblical Science Institute: https://biblicalscienceinstitute.com/origins/evolution-not-a-theory/
  22. 3 Attributes Critical for Effective Persuasion – Pastor Brian Chilton: https://pastorbrianchilton.wordpress.com/2015/08/31/3-attributes-critical-for-effective-persuasion/
  23. Tim Keller on evangelism in the 21st century – Tim Keller, founder and senior pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, talks about evangelism and contextualising the gospel for the 21st century city.- YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DHQBoLo31Ns&t=160s
  24. William Lane Craig Q&A: If God Knows My Decisions How Do I Have Free Will? – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7USxGUOefrg
  25. The God Question(s): Should Christians Use Evidence and Logic to Proclaim the Gospel?: http://askingthegodquestions.blogspot.com/2013/08/should-christians-use-evidence-and.html
  26. Discovering God the Way Sherlock Holmes Would | Come Reason’s Apologetics Notes: http://apologetics-notes.comereason.org/2015/08/discovering-god-way-sherlock-holmes.html
  27. The Christian Parent Manifesto – Kristen Welch: https://wearethatfamily.com/2015/07/the-christian-parent-manifesto/
  28. 30 Common New Testament Challenges By Skeptics Answered – This is a one-stop shopping list of common challenges with good responses by the author (Microsoft Word Document download). | Apologetics For Life: https://apologeticsforlife.org/30-common-new-testament-challenges-by-sceptics-answered/
  29. My Goal in Every Conversation with Mormons – Brett Kunkle – Stand to Reason Blog: https://str.typepad.com/weblog/2015/09/my-goal-in-every-conversation-with-mormons.html
  30. Son, Don’t Check Your Brain at the Door: http://blogs.pjstar.com/ratedpg/2015/08/20/son-dont-check-your-brain-at-the-door/
  31. How Do We Motivate Students Who Don’t Seem to Care? | Sean McDowell: https://seanmcdowell.org/blog/how-do-i-motivate-students-who-dont-seem-to-care
  32. Correcting four myths about the history of the Crusades | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2015/08/23/correcting-four-myths-about-the-history-of-the-crusades-3/
  33. Evangelistic Apologetics as it is typically defined today.: https://www.solascripturatoday.org/index.php/17-evan-apol/40-evan-apol-2
  34. The Key to Successful Debating – I believe that preparation is the key to successful debating. My goal is to be so well prepared that I don’t have to think on my feet. This is accomplished by thinking in advance of all the objections to ones arguments that one’s opponent is likely to raise and then preparing answers to them. Whichever ones he brings up you are therefore prepared to meet. | Reasonable Faith: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/question-answer/the-key-to-successful-debating
  35. Evangelizing in a World Drowning in Sexual Problems. Evangelism today occurs in a world that is drowning in sexual problems, misunderstandings, and a hardening against the gospel as a result. – Randy Newman: https://www.biblestudytools.com/blogs/randy-newman/evangelizing-in-a-world-drowning-in-sexual-problems.html
  36. How to Defeat Modern Day Atheism With Three Easy Questions | Shadow To Light: https://shadowtolight.wordpress.com/2015/06/24/how-to-defeat-modern-day-atheism-with-three-easy-questions/
  37. Are there Guidelines for doing Apologetics? Almost every discipline has a set of rules and guidelines that help a person perform better. In fact, guidelines could be produced for nearly any endeavor. Why should apologetics be any different? Following are some things I have found that are very helpful in developing apologetic skills. I am not saying that these are definitive or exhaustive in scope. Rather, these are simply the things that I have found that have helped me. I hope they help you. | carm.org: https://carm.org/defending-the-faith/are-there-guidelines-for-doing-apologetics/
  38. Are Christians Intolerant Haters? The Charges are Not New: https://www.michaeljkruger.com/are-christians-intolerant-haters-the-charges-are-not-new/
  39. Practical Evangelism – Taking the Roof Off – creation.com: https://creation.com/practical-evangelism
  40. Christianity Promotes Rational (and Evidential) Exploration | Cold Case Christianity: http://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/christianity-promotes-rational-and-evidential-exploration/
  41. 3 Common Traits of Youth Who Don’t Leave the Church: https://faithit.com/3-common-traits-of-youth-who-dont-leave-the-church/
  42. 5 Reasons Christian Teens Need Apologetics – There are many reasons why providing Christian youth with apologetics training is vitally important. Before teaching students how to give reasons for why they believe Christianity to be true, we must first be ready to help them understand that Christianity is rational so that they are ready to engage the flood of ideologies they are encountering. | Real Life Apologetics: https://reallifeapologetics.wordpress.com/2014/07/27/5-reasons-christian-teens-need-apologetics/
  43. Do Your Kids Know Why They Need God? A few months ago, my 6-year-old daughter asked a question that has had me thinking ever since: Mommy, why does God matter so much? It was the most fundamental of questions, really. Yet I was embarrassingly uncertain of how to answer it in a way that meaningfully encapsulates the full answer for her. I’ve thought about the question many times since she first asked it, and it’s always bothered me that I haven’t quite been able to put my finger on how best to reply.: https://natashacrain.com/do-your-kids-know-why-they-need-god/
  44. NT Wright: Why we can trust that Jesus was really resurrected – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ln6LWHe84SQ
  45. Lee Strobel Summarizes the Case for Jesus’ Resurrection – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXePic5PMM0
  46. Lee Strobel – The 4 E’s of the Resurrection – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Itcj8mhMcA
  47. Mike Licona – Is the story of JESUS’ RESURRECTION a LEGEND? – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCPKKU-1FtY
  48. Case for the Resurrection – Animated Video (Sources: Craig, William Lane. Knowing the Truth About the Resurrection: Our Response to the Empty Tomb. ) – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEPNjXmdseM
  49. Christ’s Resurrection: The Cornerstone of Christianity – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nI0el9vjWY
  50. Deepak Chopra vs Christian Apologist Greg Koukl Debate (12 min 39 sec video) – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meYHmFz33NE
  51. Forget the Myths, Ignore the Hype; Here’s What We Really Know About Jesus’ ‘Missing Years’ | The Stream: https://stream.org/forget-myths-what-we-know-jesus-missing-years/
  52. USA Today Looks to Bounce Oral Roberts University from NCAA – The small Tulsa college is evangelical, they announce, as if it’s news. That means they believe the Bible. And if they believe the Bible, an editor argues, there should be no place for them on the court — or anywhere else in polite society.: https://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=WA21C56&f=WU21C18
  53. How to Disagree – the article establishes a hierarchy of 0 – 6 of disagreement approaches (lowest being the worst, or most fallacious): http://paulgraham.com/disagree.html
  54. The Quran on the Inspiration of the Torah and Gospel and a Challenge to Islam Bishop’s Encyclopedia of Religion, Society and Philosophy: https://jamesbishopblog.com/2020/12/08/the-quran-on-the-inspiration-of-the-torah-and-gospel-and-a-challenge-to-islam/
  55. Blog Post – The Case for Cessationism Stands: https://www.gty.org/library/blog/B140505/the-case-for-cessationism-stands
  56. Mammoth DNA: The Oldest Ever Found? | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/mammoth-dna-oldest-ever-found/

“When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, LORD, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs. But I, with a song of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. Salvation comes from the LORD.” And the LORD commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land. Jonah 2:7-10

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (2-25-2021)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1900) from Nuggets:

There are thousands in the present day just as blind in their way as the Jews. They shut their eyes against the plainest facts and doctrines of Christianity. They pretend to say that they do not understand, and cannot therefore believe the things that we press on their attention, as needful to salvation. But, alas! in nineteen cases out of twenty it is a willful ignorance. They do not believe what they do not like to believe. – J.C. Ryle

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Why Your Children DO Need Apologetics: Correcting Misconceptions – Mama Bear Apologetics: https://mamabearapologetics.com/children-do-need-apologetics/
  2. 6 E’s of authenticity Frank Turek at Cross Examined teaches 6 evidences to consider that give us confidence in the authority of scripture, all starting with the letter E for easy remembering. J.R. Cooper Author: https://jrcooper.org/2017/01/24/6-es-of-authenticity/
  3. Who Is Jesus, According to Other Religions? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/who-is-jesus-according-to-other-religions/
  4. Joseph Smith and Early Mormon History, by J. Warner Wallace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZfUOFQkv69k
  5. Does Proof of Jesus Other Than in the Bible Exist?: https://www.christianity.com/wiki/jesus-christ/does-proof-of-jesus-other-than-in-the-bible-exist.html
  6. Dr. Walt Russell explains how to read the Bible effectively | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2021/02/19/dr-walt-russell-explains-how-to-read-the-bible-effectively/
  7. Aren’t Christians Just Arrogant Know-It-Alls? – Canon Fodder: https://www.michaeljkruger.com/arent-christians-just-arrogant-know-it-alls/
  8. When Discomfort Is Definite Evidence | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/when-discomfort-is-definite-evidence/
  9. How do I know if I am saved?: https://www.ligonier.org/learn/qas/how-do-i-know-if-i-am-saved/
  10. Quick Shot: All religions lead to the same place | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/quick-shot-all-religions-lead-to-the-same-place/
  11. Pastor of Progressive Church Says the Bible Can’t Live Up to Impossible, Modern Standards | Kingsjester’s Blog: https://kingsjester.wordpress.com/2021/02/21/pastor-of-progressive-church-says-the-bible-cant-live-up-to-impossible-modern-standards/
  12. 15 Characteristics Of New Age Spirituality | Reasons for Jesus: https://reasonsforjesus.com/15-characteristics-of-new-age-spirituality/
  13. Is Jesus Real and How Can We Know? – My Humble Apology: https://myhumbleapology.com/2021/01/16/is-jesus-real-and-how-can-we-know/
  14. Apologetics as Dialogue, not Debate (Part 1) | Mikel Del Rosario | Your Apologetics Guy: http://apologeticsguy.com/2021/01/apologetics-as-dialogue-part-1/
  15. Can We Trust the Bible If We Can’t Confirm Every Detail? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/can-we-trust-the-bible-if-we-cant-confirm-every-detail/
  16. Is the Bible Still Relevant Today? Christianity 201: https://christianity201.wordpress.com/2020/11/05/is-the-bible-still-relevant-today/amp/
  17. Jesus in the Old Testament: https://mbcpathway.com/2020/11/06/jesus-in-the-old-testament/
  18. Two kinds of people who have tried to shame me away from Christianity | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2021/02/24/two-kinds-of-people-who-have-tried-to-shame-me-away-from-christianity-4/

The LORD remembers us and will bless us: He will bless the house of Israel, he will bless the house of Aaron, he will bless those who fear the LORD– small and great alike. Psalms 115:12-13

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (12-24-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1900) from Nuggets:

Most people don’t reject the Bible because they think it contradicts itself, but because it contradicts the way they want to live.  – Todd Adkins

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. James Tour: Molecules Don’t Care About Life | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2020/09/james-tour-molecules-dont-care-about-life/
  2. Why Believe? Abdu Murray looks at common barriers to belief and how to address them within a Christian context. | RZIM: https://www.rzim.org/watch/rzim-global/why-believe
  3. When Was Jesus Born? Christs birth is traditionally celebrated in the West on December 25th, but many Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas on January 7. Neither date is likely correct in light of several clues uncovered by historians and information in the Bible itself.: https://www.christianity.com/wiki/jesus-christ/when-was-jesus-born.html
  4. What is the true meaning of Christmas? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/Christmas-true-meaning.html
  5. Y-Chromosome Study Confirms Genesis Flood Timeline | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/y-chromosome-study-confirms-genesis-flood-timeline/
  6. Are There Contradictions In The Gospels? HillFaith: https://hillfaith.blog/2020/12/16/what-do-you-think-are-there-contradictions-in-the-gospels/
  7. Jesus, Our Substitute: https://www.ligonier.org/blog/jesus-our-substitute/
  8. Politics is becoming our new religion. God help us.: https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/voices/2020/12/22/politics-becoming-our-new-religion-god-help-us-column/3926804001/
  9. Cretaceous Bird Beak Pecks Holes in Evolution | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/cretaceous-bird-beak-pecks-holes-in-evolution/
  10. Have They Found Jesus Childhood Home in Nazareth? | Ben Witherington: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/bibleandculture/2020/12/23/have-they-found-jesus-childhood-home-in-nazareth/
  11. The Virgin Shall Conceive: Why Isaiah 7:14 Confuses People-For many years, the prophecy that confused me most was Isaiah 7:14: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Every Christmas I heard pastors quote this, but none had ever explained its context. What confused me was that the next three verses say that the prophecy will be fulfilled within 14 years. If it was supposed to be fulfilled in the eighth century BC, how could it apply to Jesus?: https://www.jeanejones.net/2020/12/the-virgin-shall-conceive-why-isaiah-714-confuses-people/
  12. The Story Behind Handel’s Messiah – BreakPoint: https://breakpoint.org/the-story-behind-handels-messiah/
  13. Embracing Simplicity at Christmas: A Practical Guide | RELEVANT: https://www.relevantmagazine.com/life5/embracing-simplicity-at-christmas-a-practical-guide/
  14. Don’t Let Your Bible Keep You From the Bible: https://www.kevinhalloran.net/dont-let-your-bible-keep-you-from-the-bible/
  15. Why Does It Matter that Jesus Was Born of a Virgin?: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/kevin-deyoung/why-does-it-matter-that-jesus-was-born-of-a-virgin/
  16. What Does the X in Xmas Mean?: https://www.ligonier.org/blog/why-is-x-used-when-it-replaces-christ-in-christmas/

Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.John 3:5

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (12-10-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1800) from Nuggets:

Now of course we must agree with Hume that if there is absolutely ‘uniform experience’ against miracles, if in other words they have never happened, why then they never have. Unfortunately we know the experience against them to be uniform only if we know that all the reports of them are false. And we can know all the reports to be false only if we know already that miracles have never occurred. In fact, we are arguing in a circle.  – C.S. Lewis

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Where Did Cain Get His Wife? One of the most-asked questions about the Bible is Where’d Cain get his wife? Skeptics have found that many Christians are easily stumped by this query, but the answer isn’t as hard as you might think. | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/bible-characters/cain/creation-basics/
  2. How to Talk with Your Teens about Sex and Love from a Biblical Worldview: Interview with Sean McDowell: https://natashacrain.com/how-to-talk-with-your-teens-about-sex-and-love-from-a-biblical-worldview-interview-with-sean-mcdowell/
  3. Image Processing in the Eye: Like Magic – The amount of image processing going on in the eyeball is astounding. Did you know that the signal from your retina splits into some 20 channels that analyze the image before it reaches the brain? ..similar to movie compression algorithms. There’s no need to keep sending unchanged parts of an image; the brain already has that information. By subtracting two sequential images, the visual cortex can forward just the parts that change.: https://evolutionnews.org/2014/01/image_processin/
  4. Central Command: The Brains Role in Maintaining Balance | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2016/09/central_command/
  5. An Overview of the Body’s Amazing, Irreducibly Complex Systems | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2016/09/in_conclusion_a/
  6. William Borden: No Reserves. No Retreats. No Regrets.(short biography of a millionaire missionary): http://home.snu.edu/~hculbert/regret.htm
  7. What does the Bible say about animal/pet euthanasia? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/animal-pet-euthanasia.html
  8. Would a Loving God Send People to Hell? (Video) | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/videos/would-a-loving-god-send-people-to-hell-video/
  9. Resource guide helps parents combat liberal agenda at schools – The Christian Post: https://www.christianpost.com/news/resource-guide-helps-parents-combat-liberal-agenda-at-schools.html
  10. Video, audio and summary of intelligent design discussion, with Ben Shapiro and Stephen C. Meyer | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2020/12/06/video-audio-and-summary-of-intelligent-design-discussion-with-ben-shapiro-and-stephen-c-meyer-3/
  11. Where Will Cancel Culture End? Meet Dorian Abbot | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2020/12/where-will-cancel-culture-end-meet-dorian-abbot/
  12. Investing in the next generation – Building a robust Christian worldview. Children and young people are the next generation. They live in an ungodly skeptical world that will challenge their faith in Jesus. We want them to have a robust and resilient faith that can withstand enemy attacks. But how is this possible when many young people stop attending church on a regular basis after they turn 18? And the pandemic may cause more to abandon Christianity or churchgoing. Many of these young people are leaving because the culture around them has impacted them deeply and caused them to question the truth claims of Christianity. What can we do about it? | George’s Journal: https://georgesjournal.net/2020/12/07/investing-in-the-next-generation/
  13. Michael Egnor: The Evidence against Materialism – YouTube: https://youtu.be/BqHrpBPdtSI
  14. What does it mean to contend for the faith? | OnceDelivered.net: https://oncedelivered.net/2020/12/01/what-does-it-mean-to-contend-for-the-faith-2/
  15. Teaching Our Kids to Spot Empty Statements – Mama Bear Apologetics: https://mamabearapologetics.com/empty-message-unity/
  16. If There Is a God, Why Are There Atheists?: The Classic Collection with R.C. Sproul – YouTube: https://youtu.be/D1Vg-WvJ8uM
  17. What does it mean that the righteous will live by faith (Habakkuk 2:4)? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/righteous-will-live-by-faith.html

For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king; it is he who will save us. Isaiah 33:22

Blessings to you all

JC Ryle – The Great Separation!

What a powerful piece this is…

The Great Separation!

J.C. Ryle, 1878

“His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly cleanse His threshing floor. He will gather His wheat into the barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire!” Matthew 3:12

Wheat or chaff? You see my question — for whom do you think it is meant? Is it for corn merchants and farmers only, and for none else? If you think so, then you are much mistaken. It is meant for every man, woman, and child in the world. And among others, it is meant for you.

The question is drawn from the verse of Scripture which is now before your eyes. The words of that verse were spoken by John the Baptist. They are a prophecy about our Lord Jesus Christ, and a prophecy which has not yet been fulfilled. They are a prophecy which we shall all see fulfilled one day, and God alone knows how soon.

Reader, I invite you this day to consider the great truths which this verse contains. I invite you to listen to me, while I unfold them and set them before you in order. Who knows but this text may prove a word in season to your soul! Who knows but my question may help to make this day the happiest day in your life! Listen, before you begin once more your appointed path of duty. Listen, before you start once more on some round of business. Listen, before you plunge once more into some course of useless idleness and folly. Listen to one who loves your soul, and would sincerely help to save it, or draw it nearer to Christ. Who knows what a day may bring forth! Who can tell whether you will live to see tomorrow! Be still, and listen to me a few minutes, while I show you something out of the Word of God.

I. Let me show you in the first place, the two great classes into which the world may be divided.

There are only two classes of people in the world, in the sight of God — and both are mentioned in the text which begins this tract. There are those who are called the wheat — and there are those who are called the chaff.

Viewed with the eye of man, the earth contains many different sorts of inhabitants. Viewed with the eye of God, it only contains two. Man’s eye looks at the outward appearance — this is all he thinks of. The eye of God looks at the heart — this is the only part of which He takes any account. And tried by the state of their hearts, there are but two classes into which people can be divided — either they are wheat, or they are chaff.

Reader, who are the WHEAT in the world? Listen to me, and I will tell you.

The wheat means all men and women who are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ — all who are led by the Holy Spirit — all who have felt themselves sinners, and fled for refuge to the salvation offered in the Gospel — all who love the Lord Jesus, and live to the Lord Jesus, and serve the Lord Jesus — all who have taken Christ for their only confidence, and the Bible for their only guide, and regard sin as their deadliest enemy, and look to Heaven as their only home. All such, of every church, name, nation, people, and tongue — of every rank, station, condition, and degree — all such are God’s wheat!

Show me men of this kind of people anywhere, and I know what they are. I know that they and I may not agree in all particulars — but I see in them the handiwork of the King of kings, and I ask no more. I know not whence they came, and where they found their religion — but I know where they are going, and that is enough for me. They are the children of my Father in Heaven. They are part of His wheat.

All such, though sinful, and vile, and unworthy in their own eyes — are the precious part of mankind. They are the sons and daughters of God the Father. They are the delight of God the Son. They are the habitation of God the Spirit. The Father beholds no iniquity in them — they are the members of His dear Son’s body — in Him He sees them — and is well pleased. The Lord Jesus discerns in them, the fruit of His own travail and work upon the cross — and is well satisfied. The Holy Spirit regards them as spiritual temples which He Himself has raised — and rejoices over them. In a word, they are the wheat of the earth — God’s wheat.

Reader, who are the CHAFF in the world? Listen to me once more, and I will tell you this also.

The chaff means all men and women who have no saving faith in Christ, and no sanctification of the Spirit — whoever they may be. Some of them perhaps are infidels — and some are formal Christians. Some are sneering Sadducees — and some self-righteous Pharisees. Some of them make a point of keeping up a kind of ‘Sunday religion’ — and others are utterly careless of everything except their own pleasure and the world. But all alike, who have the two great marks already mentioned — no faith and no sanctification — all such are chaff. From the atheists Paine and Voltaire — to the formal churchman who can think of nothing but outward ceremonies — to the unconverted admirer of sermons in the present day — all, all are standing in one rank before God all, all are chaff!

They bring no glory to God the Father. They honor not the Son, and so do not honor the Father who sent Him. They neglect that mighty salvation, which countless millions of angels admire. They disobey that Word which was graciously written for their learning. They listen not to the voice of Him who condescended to leave Heaven and die for their sins. They pay no tribute of service and affection to Him who gave them life, and breath, and all things. And therefore God takes no pleasure in them. He pities them — but He reckons them no better than chaff!

Yes — you may have rare intellectual gifts, and high mental attainments — you may sway kingdoms by your counsel, move millions by your pen, or keep crowds in breathless attention by your tongue — but if you have never submitted yourself to the yoke of Christ, and never honored His Gospel by heartfelt reception of it — then you are nothing but chaff in His sight. Natural gifts without saving grace, are like a row of ciphers without an unit before them; they look big — but they are of no value. The vilest insect that crawls in the filth — is a nobler being than you are! It fills its place in creation, and glorifies its Maker with all its power — and you do not. You do not honor God with heart, and will, and intellect, and members, which are all His. You invert His order and arrangement, and live as if time was of more importance than eternity, and body better than soul. You dare to neglect God’s greatest gift — His own incarnate Son. You are cold about that subject which fills all Heaven with hallelujahs. And so long as this is the case, you belong to the worthless part of mankind. You are the chaff of the earth.

Reader, let this thought be deeply engraved in your mind, whatever else you forget in this volume. Remember there are only two kinds of people in the world. There are wheat — and there are chaff.

There are many nations in Europe. Each differs from the rest. Each has its own language, its own laws, its own peculiar customs. But God’s eye divides Europe into two great parties — the wheat and the chaff.

There are many classes in England. There are nobles and commoners — farmers and shopkeepers — masters and servants — rich and poor. But God’s eye only takes account of two orders — the wheat and the chaff.

There are many and various minds in every congregation that meets for religious worship. There are some who attend for a mere form — and some who really desire to meet Christ; some who come there to please others — and some who come to please God; some who bring their hearts with them, and are not soon tired — and some who leave their hearts behind them, and reckon the whole service as weary work. But the eye of Jesus only sees two divisions in the congregation — the wheat and the chaff.

There were millions of visitors to the Great Exhibition of 1851. From Europe, Asia, Africa, and America — from North, and South, and East, and West — crowds came together to see what human skill and industry could do. Children of our first father Adam’s family, who had never seen each other before, for once met face to face under one roof. But the eye of the Lord only saw two companies thronging that large palace of glass — the wheat and the chaff.

Reader, I know well the world dislikes this way of dividing professing Christians. The world tries hard to fancy there are three sorts of people, and not two. To be very godly and very strict does not suit the world — they cannot, will not be holy. To have no religion at all does not suit the world — as that would not be respectable. “Thank God,” they will say, “we are not so bad as that!” But to have religion enough to be respectable — and yet not go into extremes, to be sufficiently good — and yet not be peculiar — to have a quiet, easy-going, moderate kind of Christianity, and go comfortably to Heaven after all — this is the world’s favorite idea! There is a third class, a safe middle class — the world imagines; and in this middle class — the majority of men persuade themselves they will be found.

Reader, I denounce this notion of a middle class as an immense and soul-ruining delusion! I warn you strongly not to be carried away by it. It is as vain an invention as the Pope’s purgatory. It is a refuge of lies, a castle in the air, a Russian ice-palace, a vast unreality, an empty dream! This middle class is a class of Christians no where spoken of in the Bible!

There were two classes in the day of Noah’s flood; those who were inside the ark — and those who were outside. There were two classes in the parable of the Gospel net; those who are called the good fish — and those who are called the bad. There were two classes in the parable of the ten virgins; those who are described as wise — and those who are described as foolish. There were two classes in the account of the judgment day; the sheep — and the goats. There were two sides of the throne; the right hand — and the left. There were two abodes when the last sentence has been passed; Heaven — and Hell.

And just so, there are only two classes in the world:
those who are in the state of nature — and those who are in the state of grace;
those who are in the narrow way — and those who are in the broad;
those who have faith — and those who have no faith;
those who have been converted — and those who have not been converted;
those who are with Christ — and those who are against Him;
those who gather with Him — and those who scatter abroad;
those who are wheat — and those who are chaff.
Into these two classes, the whole world may be divided. Beside these two classes, there is none.

Reader, dear reader, see now what cause there is for self-inquiry! Are you among the wheat — or among the chaff? Neutrality is impossible. Either you are in one class — or in the other. Which is it, of the two?

You attend church perhaps. You go to the Lord’s table. You like good people. You can distinguish between good preaching and bad. You think Popery false, and oppose it firmly. You think Protestantism true, and support it cordially. You subscribe to religious societies. You attend religious meetings. You sometimes read religious books. It is well — it is all very well. It is good — it is all very good. It is more than can be said of many. But still, this is not a straightforward answer to my question: Are you wheat — or are you chaff?

Have you been born again? Are you a new creature? Have you put off the old man, and put on the new? Have you ever felt your sins, and repented of them? Are you looking only to Christ for pardon and eternal life? Do you love Christ? Do you serve Christ? Do you loathe heart-sins, and fight against them? Do you long for perfect holiness, and follow hard after it? Have you come out from the world? Do you delight in the Bible? Do you wrestle in prayer? Do you love Christ’s people? Do you try to do good to the world? Are you vile in your own eyes, and willing to take the lowest place? Are you a Christian in business, and on week days, and by your own fireside? Oh, think, think, think on these things — and then perhaps you will be better able to tell the state of your soul!

Reader, I beseech you not to turn away from my question, however unpleasant it may be. Answer it, though it may prick your conscience, and cut you to the heart. Answer it, though it may prove you in the wrong, and expose your fearful danger. Rest not, rest not, until you know how it is between you and God! Better a thousand times find out that you are in an evil case, and repent in time — than live on in uncertainty, and be lost eternally!

Reader, remember my question. Begin to meditate on it this very day. Are you wheat — or chaff?

To read the rest, go to http://gracegems.org/Ryle/great_separation.htm

mid-week apologetics booster (11-19-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1800) from Nuggets:

Telescopes reveal comets in long orbits around the sun. These balls of ice follow orbits that every once in a while bring them close to the giant ball of fire. It would be like putting a snow cone half an inch from a space heater set on high. No wonder comets routinely fizzle in front of our eyes when they’re near the sun. They can’t last billions of years. – SCOTT ARLEDGE and BRIAN THOMAS, Ph.D. (Acts and Facts August 2020)

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED – a fascinating survey of history from 1453 to the Pilgrims to Thanksgiving with none other than historian Bill Federer. This episode for the CrossExamined podcast is packed with surprising historical data: https://crossexamined.org/everything-is-connected/
  2. The Date of the Canon – Dr. Michael Kruger – Renewing Your Mind | Nov 12, 2020: https://renewingyourmind.org/2020/11/12/the-date-of-the-canon
  3. 400 Years Later, The Mayflower Compact Matters Now More Than Ever: https://thefederalist.com/2020/11/11/400-years-later-the-mayflower-compact-matters-now-more-than-ever/
  4. IF THE FOUNDATIONS ARE DESTROYED pt.5 | Regaining Lost Ground with Pastor Shane Idleman, Nov 13, 2020: https://www.oneplace.com/ministries/regaining-lost-ground/listen/if-the-foundations-are-destroyed-pastor-shane-idleman-853384.html
  5. Will God forgive me? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/will-God-forgive-me.html
  6. Stephen Meyer Interviews John Lennox about going; Against the Tide – YouTube: https://youtu.be/zD50_1kicw4
  7. A Historian Explains the Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus (Dr. Gary Habermas) – YouTube: https://youtu.be/kWSG5okmUr8
  8. Biology doesn’t support the idea of biological evolution | George’s Journal: https://georgesjournal.net/2020/11/15/biology-doesnt-support-the-idea-of-biological-evolution/
  9. The Election and Why Socialism Doesn’t Work – Cross Examined 11/07/20: https://subspla.sh/mn2txfg
  10. Apologetics Gift Ideas for the Holidays – My Humble Apology: https://myhumbleapology.com/2020/11/14/apologetics-gift-ideas-for-the-holidays/
  11. The Necessity of a Cosmic Mind: https://crossexamined.org/the-necessity-of-a-cosmic-mind/
  12. The Well-Churched Atheist | Women in Apologetics: https://womeninapologetics.com/the-well-churched-atheist/
  13. Why Jesus Cannot Be One Truth among Many | Crossway Articles: https://www.crossway.org/articles/why-jesus-cannot-be-one-truth-among-many/
  14. Ostrich – a reminder of creation and the Fall – creation.com: https://creation.com/ostrich
  15. Should You Use a Preferred Gender Pronoun? Quick Thoughts! – YouTube: https://youtu.be/B_Uz4BjGNqE
  16. Answering Objections to Gods Existence | Q&A with William Lane Craig: https://coffeehousequestions.com/2020/11/17/answering-objections-to-gods-existence-qa-with-william-lane-craig/
  17. How were people saved in the Old Testament? We are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. But how were people reconciled to God before the coming of Christ? From one of our Ask Ligonier events, Steven Lawson explains how the saints of the Old Testament were saved. – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_DxxetguBE

Brothers, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day. But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne. Seeing what was ahead, he spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to the grave, nor did his body see decay. Acts 2:29-31

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (11-12-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1800) from Nuggets:

When you’re irritable, the heart of the problem is primarily a problem of the heart. – The Love Dare

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. How to Raise Your Kids So They Will Remain in the Faith | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/how-to-raise-your-kids-so-they-will-remain-in-the-faith/
  2. Christian woman finds a way to discuss her faith with non-Christians | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2020/11/08/christian-woman-finds-a-way-to-discuss-her-faith-with-non-christians-2/
  3. The Christian Atheist: When You Believe in God But Not His Church Cyber Penance: https://cyberpenance.wordpress.com/2020/02/03/the-christian-atheist-when-you-believe-in-god-but-not-his-church/
  4. Surviving evolution classes at high school – creation.com: https://creation.com/surviving-evolution-classes-at-high-school
  5. Gbekli Tepe shows evidence of geometric planning – creation.com: https://creation.com/gobekli-tepe-geometric-planning
  6. If You Want Your Apologetics to be Effective, Don’t Skip this Step!: https://clearlens.org/blogs/if-you-want-your-apologetics-to-be-effective-dont-skip-this-step
  7. Bible Difficulties | Evidence Unseen: http://www.evidenceunseen.com/bible-difficulties-2/
  8. Standing against the Tide: https://reasons.org/explore/blogs/impact-events/read/impact-events/2020/11/06/standing-against-the-tide
  9. #50 Questions, Final Answer: Christianity Meets the Test; How Many Christians Do? | The Stream: https://stream.org/50-questions-christianity-meets-test-how-many-christians/
  10. Faith, Hope, and Love: Why Christians Must Keep Up the Fight | The Stream: https://stream.org/faith-hope-love-why-christians-must-keep-up-the-fight/
  11. How Can Jesus Be the Only Way? – YouTube: https://youtu.be/RRyq6RwzlEM
  12. The Problem of Canon – Ligonier Ministries: https://subspla.sh/kh5c453
  13. Christians Aren’t In Despair If Biden Won, Because Government Isn’t God: https://thefederalist.com/2020/11/10/christians-arent-in-existential-despair-if-biden-won-because-government-isnt-our-god/
  14. Big Faith Questions | Compass Christian Church (Chandler, AZ) looks like this is an on-site event with BBQ served: https://compassaz.church/event/big-faith-questions-2/2020-11-14/
  15. 3 Times Jesus Responded to Doubt – With Evidence: https://tentmakingchristianity.com/3-times-jesus-responded-to-doubt/
  16. Christians in India Face Stunning Ultimatum: Renounce Your Faith in Christ or Have Family Beaten and Evicted From Home | American Center for Law and Justice: https://aclj.org/persecuted-church/christians-in-india-face-stunning-ultimatum-renounce-your-faith-in-christ-or-have-family-beaten-and-evicted-from-home
  17. A Sober Warning from the Earliest Christians – Tim Challies: https://www.challies.com/articles/a-warning-from-the-earliest-christians/
  18. You Can’t Argue Someone into the Kingdom. Really? – Stephen J. Bedard: http://www.stephenjbedard.com/2014/07/30/you-cant-argue-someone-into-the-kingdom-really/

We ought therefore to show hospitality to such men so that we may work together for the truth. 3 John 1:8

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (9-17-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1800) from Nuggets:

God maintains a delicate balance between keeping His existence sufficiently evident so people will know He’s there and yet hiding His presence enough so that people who want to choose to ignore Him can do it. This way, their choice of destiny is really free. – J.P. Moreland

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Great Analogy – Two Men Are Seated On a Plane… – YouTube: https://youtu.be/xqgWEf4xVOg?t=41
  2. How to Avoid An Atheist Ambush in University – BreakPoint: https://www.breakpoint.org/how-to-avoid-an-atheist-ambush-in-university/
  3. Privileged Species featuring Dr. Michael Denton – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VoI2ms5UHWg
  4. The Apologetics of Peter A Logical Argument for the Deity of Christ Probe Ministries: https://probe.org/the-apologetics-of-peter/
  5. Are Christians Biased? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/are-christians-biased/
  6. If Christians Are Supposed to Rely on Evidence, Why Call It Faith? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/if-christians-are-supposed-to-rely-on-evidence-why-call-it-faith/
  7. The Inexplicable Fine-Tuning of the Foundational Forces in Our Universe | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/the-inexplicable-fine-tuning-of-the-foundational-forces-in-our-universe/
  8. How Could a Loving God Condemn Good People to Hell?: http://askingthegodquestions.blogspot.com/2018/11/how-could-loving-god-condemn-good.html
  9. How church history will help you defend the faith Southern Equip: https://equip.sbts.edu/article/church-history-will-help-defend-faith/
  10. Simple Suggestions to Challenge Young Christians Toward Spiritual Maturity (Cold-Case Christianity Broadcast S6E04) | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/podcasts/simple-suggestions-to-challenge-young-christians-toward-spiritual-maturity-cold-case-christianity-broadcast-s6e04/
  11. God’s Holiness in a great 6 minute animated video by the Bible Project – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l9vn5UvsHvM
  12. The Holiness of God – Wrath & Grace Kids (A. W. Pink) – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGK-Oq4qUQc
  13. The Holiness of God: R.C. Sproul through the Years – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iK0NjiBXKN4
  14. What does it mean that God is holy, holy, holy? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/holy-holy-holy.html
  15. Yale University computer science professor takes a look at protein formation probabilities | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2020/09/14/yale-university-computer-science-professor-takes-a-look-at-protein-formation-probabilities-3/
  16. Pastor’s Daughter Sent Home from School for Wearing ‘Homosexuality Is a Sin’ T-Shirt – Milton Quintanilla: https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/milton-quintanilla/pastors-daughter-sent-home-from-school-for-wearing-homosexuality-is-a-sin-shirt.html
  17. What was God doing before He created the universe? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/God-doing.html

But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever. I will praise you forever for what you have done; in your name I will hope, for your name is good. I will praise you in the presence of your saints. Psalms 52:8-9

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (9-10-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is are 2 random quotes (of over 1800) from Nuggets:

If we determined that becoming a scientist did cause people to drop their belief in God, we might have reason to think there is some inherent conflict between the practice of science and theism. But to the contrary, Ecklund’s Religion among Academic Scientists Study showed that the irreligious are simply more likely to become scientists in the first place. – Natasha Crain (Talking with your kids about God)

Without conversion there is no salvation. We all need an entire change of nature. Of ourselves we have neither faith, nor fear, nor love towards God. “We must be born again.” Of ourselves we are utterly unfit for dwelling in God’s presence. Heaven would be no heaven to us if we were not converted.  – J.C. Ryle

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. How can the Bible be relevant today when it was written so long ago? | Jo Vitale | Q&A | RZIM – YouTube: https://youtu.be/81ePnq_Hf-w
  2. How Can I Help My Evolutionist Son Respect Both Science and Scripture?: https://www.ligonier.org/blog/how-can-i-help-my-evolutionist-son-respect-both-science-and-scripture/
  3. Tough Questions From Christian Teens Did God Create Evil? (Part 2) Faith & Self Defense: https://faithandselfdefense.com/2020/05/15/tough-questions-from-christian-teens-god-and-evil-part-2/amp/
  4. Ten Reasons “Tent-Makers Make Great Christian Case Makers: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/ten-reasons-tent-makers-make-great-christian-case-makers/
  5. Diagnose before You Treat : https://subspla.sh/8wzpswd
  6. The Science & Faith Podcast – James Tour and Stephen Meyer: Life’s Origin: Lab + Information = Mind – YouTube: https://youtu.be/x5tUDJ23Kms
  7. The Strongest Argument for God – 08/29/20 – Cross Examined: https://subspla.sh/pxyk78s
  8. Light Before the Sun – How biblical apologists have historically understood the source of light before the sun was created in Genesis 1. | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/days-of-creation/days-without-sun-what-was-source-light/
  9. Lunar Recession – Does It Support a Young Universe? | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/astronomy/moon/lunar-recession/
  10. Dark Energy, Dark Matter, and the Bible: https://www.blogos.org/scienceandtechnology/dark-energy-matter-pf.php
  11. List of Factors of Fine-Tuning of Intelligent Life in the Universe: https://www.cltruth.com/2019/factors-fine-tuning-intelligent-life-universe/
  12. Should Faith Have Its Reasons?: http://www.travisdickinson.com/should-faith-have-its-reasons/
  13. Does God do miracles today? – YouTube: https://youtu.be/Dj9RQIUcur8
  14. Apologetics Isn’t Argumentative: https://www.str.org/w/apologetics-isn-t-argumentative
  15. Judge Michael Behe’s Case for Intelligent Design Yourself | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2020/04/judge-michael-behes-case-for-intelligent-design-yourself/
  16. 5 Reasons Why a Thoughtful Person on a Religious Quest Should Start With Christianity Cyber Penance: https://cyberpenance.wordpress.com/2020/04/06/5-reasons-why-a-thoughtful-person-on-a-religious-quest-should-start-with-christianity/amp/
  17. Should We Divide over Homosexuality? – Alan Shlemon – Stand to Reason: https://subspla.sh/x47mdbv
  18. Too Good to be False with Tom Gilson – 08/15/20 – Cross Examined: https://subspla.sh/zr8xskj
  19. Starter Questions for Evangelism The Domain for Truth: https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com/2020/07/04/starter-questions-for-evangelism/amp/
  20. Evidence of Spiritual Warfare – Stand to Reason: https://subspla.sh/5yp5mg3

They were on their way up to Jerusalem, with Jesus leading the way, and the disciples were astonished, while those who followed were afraid. Again he took the Twelve aside and told them what was going to happen to him. “We are going up to Jerusalem,” he said, “and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will hand him over to the Gentiles, who will mock him and spit on him, flog him and kill him. Three days later he will rise.” Mark 10:32-34

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (6-11-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1600) from Nuggets:

“That you may be careful to do everything written in it.” (Joshua 1:8) This must be the dominating motive and object. God’s Word is to be appropriated and masticated–fed and meditated upon–not for the purpose of understanding its prophecies, or obtaining an insight into its mysteries–but in order to learn God’s will for myself, and having learned it–to conform thereunto. God’s Word is given to us chiefly–not to gratify curiosity or to entertain our imagination–but as “a lamp to our feet–and a light unto our path” (Psalm 119:105) in this dark world. It is a Rule for us to walk by–it is a heavenly standard for the regulation of all our conduct. It points out the things to be avoided–the things which would harm us. It tells of the things to be followed and practiced–the things which are for our good and our peace. It contains not only good advice–but is clothed with Divine authority, commanding implicit and unqualified obedience. – Arthur Pink

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. New Resurrection Book: Dr. Andrew Loke: Investigating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ: A New Transdisciplinary Approach (Routledge New Critical Thinking in Religion, Theology and Biblical Studies).  At the present time, this book is FREE on Kindle. THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2020/06/09/new-resurrection-book-dr-andrew-loke-called-investigating-the-resurrection-of-jesus-christ-a-new-transdisciplinary-approach-routledge-new-critical-thinking-in-religion-theology-and-biblical/
  2. The Problem of the Unevangelized Once More | Reasonable Faith: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/question-answer/the-problem-of-the-unevangelized-once-more/
  3. Your Students Are Willing to Delay Gratification, If You Are | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/your-students-are-willing-to-delay-gratification-if-you-are/
  4. Is It Reasonable to Believe in Minds Even If We Can’t Explain How They Interact with Brains? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/is-it-reasonable-to-believe-in-minds-even-if-we-cant-explain-how-they-interact-with-brains/
  5. How Can You Trust Christianity Is True When There Are So Many Unanswered Questions? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/how-can-you-trust-christianity-is-true-when-there-are-so-many-unanswered-questions/
  6. Human Zoos How Science Fueled the Racial Fire | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2020/06/human-zoos-how-science-fueled-the-racial-fire/
  7. A Brief Defense of the Pro-Life Position: http://truthbomb.blogspot.com/2020/03/a-brief-defense-of-pro-life-position.html?m=1
  8. How to Be ‘Salt of the Earth’ Kind of People: https://brandonacox.com/salt/
  9. Why is the human brain so efficient? Over the past decades, engineers have taken inspiration from the brain to improve computer design.: http://nautil.us/issue/86/energy/why-is-the-human-brain-so-efficient-rp
  10. Can we believe in God in the scientific age? | Is there a God?: https://www.is-there-a-god.info/blog/6reasons/can-we-believe-in-god-in-the-scientific-age/

Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?” For it is not wise to ask such questions. Ecclesiastes 7:10

Blessings to you all

AWANA meetings in the age of COVID-19

As with everything else nowadays, AWANA is likewise affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our AWANA program has chosen to meet each Wednesday at the normal times via Zoom video. Surprisingly, I would estimate that at least 75% of the kids still attended once we went virtual. We start off at the intro Zoom meeting with all the clubbers together – praying, reciting the pledges, singing the AWANA song and hearing a short lesson. Our AWANA director has been very creative in trying to stay faithful to our original AWANA calendar themes that had been planned – here is the calendar for March/April:

She encouraged parents to take pictures or video of themselves and their kids doing some of these activities (such as hiking, pool or shopping) and then she made a video of the submitted activities.

Counsel time for our club (Truth & Training) is prepared by our director ahead of time and posted on YouTube. Parents are expected to have the clubbers watch the counsel time lesson before the night’s activities start. Then, after the main Zoom meeting, we break off into handbook time. I have two 4th graders who have faithfully attended each week since we’ve been meeting virtually:

Actually, I think this has worked out very well. The two clubbers I have were prepared and engaged each week and we had some great conversations. I think there was actually less distraction and “goofing around” in the virtual meeting compared to the normal handbook time.

Our small group had some great discussions about the following topics:

  1. Faith in light of the current coronavirus crisis
  2. The plausibility of Noah’s ark fitting all the animals (when discussing some verses from Genesis 6)
  3. The Trinity (while discussing the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23). Emphasis being that the Trinity is One God, revealed in Three Persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This is a mystery, but it is not a contradiction.
  4. The topic of who or what you’re living your life for. Are you living your life for XBox/Fortnite or for Jesus? If it is for Jesus, does your life show that?
  5. The spiritual rebirth (being born again) and righteousness – both behavioral and “imputed” (while discussing Ephesians 2:10 and 1 Timothy 6:11). During the discussion on being born again, as I explained to them what it means to be born again. I taught them the meaning of a saying that I will never forget: “born twice, die once; born once, die twice”. They really liked that one once I explained it to them.
  6. The reality of heaven and hell while we were discussing the “path of life”. We discussed how each person has the choice where they go.

I have treasured these times and I hope they have been meaningful for these 2 clubbers as well! One of them even asked if we could continue to meet over the summer!

Praise be to God!

mid-week apologetics booster (3-19-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1500) from Nuggets:

David could not put his finger upon any entry in his diary, and say of it, “Here is evidence that the Lord will forsake me,” for the entire tenor of his past life proved the very reverse. He should have argued from what God had done for him, that God would be his defender still. But is it not just in the same way that we doubt God’s help? Is it not mistrust without a cause? Have we ever had the shadow of a reason to doubt our Father’s goodness?  – Charles Spurgeon

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. My thoughts on the coronavirus: https://1peter41216.wordpress.com/2020/03/18/my-thoughts-on-coronavirus/
  2. Is it time to run and hide? Should you cut yourself off from other people because of the coronavirus? https://subsplash.com/crossexamined/lb/mi/+stcbbhc
  3. Why Did God Make Viruses? | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/biology/microbiology/why-did-god-make-viruses/
  4. What does the Bible say about pandemic diseases/sicknesses? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/pandemic-diseases.html
  5. C. S. Lewis on the Coronavirus: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/cs-lewis-coronavirus/
  6. The way of the master episode with focus on evolution: https://youtu.be/TwaPidXWyAM
  7. God and Math – How God is the Ultimate Foundation for Mathematics | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/creation-science/taking-god-out-of-the-equation/
  8. Presuppositional Procedure (Greg Bahnsen) – Here then is how the presuppositional (transcendental) method of defending the faith would proceed once the preliminary discussions and clarifications have taken place with the unbeliever-and the two outlooks now come head to head | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/apologetics/presuppositional-procedure/
  9. Out of Africa theory problems are growing – The favoured story of evolution is now struggling: https://creation.com/out-of-africa-theory-wrong
  10. The Story of St. Patrick – Learn about Patrick the man. Not the man of legend, who supposedly drove the snakes out of Ireland, but about the man of indomitable faith in Jesus Christ.: https://www.breakpoint.org/the-story-of-st-patrick/
  11. Getting Faith Right. Are faith and reason at odds? Is belief in Christianity a blind leap in the dark? In this weeks podcast, Tim explores the relationship between faith and reason, and shows how biblical faith is the exact opposite of so-called blind faith.: https://www.str.org/podcasts/clear-thinking-christianity/getting-faith-right#.XnAPZ1NlAzR
  12. Faith & Wishing – What makes the Christian’s faith any different from the Mormon’s wishing, or the Hindu’s wishing, or even the wishing of an atheist?: https://www.str.org/articles/faith-wishing#.XnBBoFNlAzR
  13. Apologetics for Children – How can we help our children understand evidence for the Christian faith?: https://crossexamined.org/apologetics-for-children/
  14. Talking with Your Kids about God – Christian parenting is hard work–and it’s getting harder. Parents have a deep desire to pass on their faith but fear that today’s increasingly skeptical and hostile world will eventually lead their kids to reject the truth of Christianity. That leaves many parents feeling overwhelmed–uncertain of what they can do to help their children, given the difficulty and extent of the faith challenges they will face. Frank interviews author Natasha Crain about her new book a practical and timely resource that gives parents the confidence of knowing what to discuss with their children and how to discuss it in order to facilitate impactful conversations that will form the basis of a lifelong faith.: https://subsplash.com/crossexamined/lb/mi/+jh8bkv7
  15. A, B. C’s of the Gospel – Michael Licona: https://youtu.be/7Zc4Ye9GIVY4789307

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. – Psalms 55:22

Blessings to you all

Defense of Paul Washer and other preachers from an Apologist point of view

I have a friend with whom I discuss Apologetics as well as many other general Christian topics.  We were talking about Paul Washer during one of our discussions and afterward, he went on YouTube looking for a random Paul Washer video and watched it.  He sent me an email with his critique – here are some excerpts and quotes:

“it seemed like a lot of logical fallacies or preacher tactics.”

accusation:  do you know the attributes of God?    Are you learning the important things?
straw man:  we see the church as Six Flags over Jesus
Bifurcation:  Revival or Judgement
scare tactic:  I have great fear for you.
Generalization:  based not on scripture but on culture
irrelevant thesis: most of what I will say is scandalous
straw man:   God – you will not be able to avoid Him – no matter how hard you try
straw man:  God looks like Santa Claus today
” :  we so little knowledge of Scripture
Bifurcation:   God he is everything or He is nothing

Here was my response:

Regarding Paul Washer – he is definitely not an apologist, he’s a preacher.  Paul Washer’s main goal seems to be to get individuals to consider whether they are really saved, based on the way they’re living.

He uses hyperbole for sure (e.g. the “Six Flags over Jesus” comment), but Jesus did as well – I’m not sure we can label that as a straw man.  In fact Jesus used many of those tactics, for example:

  1. Hyperbole (straw man) – I don’t think Jesus really meant that we were to cut off our hands/feet or gouge out our eyes: Matt. 18:8-9 If your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire.  And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell.
  2. Scare Tactics – Jesus used scare tactics many times.  Like when talking to the Pharisees in Matthew 23:33 – You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell? Or Luke 12:5 – But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.
  3. Bifurcation – I don’t think we could accuse Jesus of bifurcation in Matt. 12:30 – He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters or His brother – James 4:4 – You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.
  4. Accusation – I don’t think we can accuse Jesus of illegitimate accusation during His conversation with Nicodemus: John 3:10-12 – “You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things?  I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?“.

I could go on…  But I give these responses to show that Paul Washer is using tactics that, on their face, may seem like fallacies or preacher tactics, but we can find many preachers, prophets, apostles and Jesus Himself in the Bible using these same “tactics”.

If we’re honest, I’m sure most preachers commit logical fallacies.  We could probably find logic errors in many of our favorite preachers (unfortunately) – even R.C. Sproul or John MacArthur.  However, I tolerate it because that’s not what I listen to them for.  I listen to them for better understanding/insights about the biblical text and for exhortation and bringing conviction of my heart (which Paul Washer, Steven J. Lawson and others do very well).  But they give good analogies and good stories that get right to the main point and make it clear.  Here is one of my favorite Paul Washer sermons, at the very end (59:26) he gives a pretty good analogy:

 

mid-week apologetics booster (3-5-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1500) from Nuggets:

Instead of ‘Walking in the Spirit’, many Christians are sleepwalking. It’s time to wake up! Jesus is coming! – Greg Laurie

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Is the Bible True? The Cumulative Case for the Reliability of the Gospels (Free Bible Insert) | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/is-the-bible-true-the-cumulative-case-for-the-reliability-of-the-gospels-free-bible-insert/
  2. Top three reasons people reject Christianity – The Christian Post: https://www.christianpost.com/voices/top-three-reasons-people-reject-christianity.html
  3. The Problem of the Unevangelized Once More | Reasonable Faith: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/question-answer/the-problem-of-the-unevangelized-once-more/
  4. Testing the Gospels From John to Hippolytus – “The Chain of Custody” | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/testing-the-gospels-from-john-to-hippolytus/
  5. 10 FREE Bible Study Tools Bible.org Blogs: https://blogs.bible.org/10-free-bible-study-tools/
  6. Leading Youth to Spiritual Maturity and a Strong Biblical Faith: https://stevenkozak.com/2020/03/02/leading-youth-to-spiritual-maturity-and-a-strong-biblical-faith/
  7. Secular Scientists Admit Dinosaurs Appeared Abruptly | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/dinosaurs-appeared-abruptly
  8. Praying Mantis has 3-D sight (vision) – this confounds evolution | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/10511
  9. Stephen C. Meyer and Marcus Ross lecture on the Cambrian explosion | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2020/03/01/stephen-c-meyer-and-marcus-ross-lecture-on-the-cambrian-explosion-5/
  10. Greg Koukl Stand To Reason podcast – there are a number of topics talked about, but I want to direct your attention to a caller that starts 44 minutes into the podcast and asks a question about the mind/soul vs. the brain. I think Greg gives a good answer to the caller: https://subspla.sh/wpdn8xd
  11. An Acronym for Apologetics The Real Issue Apologetics Ministry: https://roblundbergapologetics.com/2020/03/02/an-acronym-for-apologetics/
  12. A Brief Defense of the Pro-Life Position: http://truthbomb.blogspot.com/2020/03/a-brief-defense-of-pro-life-position.html?m=1
  13. What Does Christianity Say About the Nature of Humans? Five Honest Realities | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/what-does-christianity-say-about-the-nature-of-humans/
  14. Debating Skeptics (1 of 5): https://pleaseconvinceme.blogspot.com/2016/12/debating-skeptics-1-of-5.html
  15. Pro-Lifers’ Social Media Bans Are Too Numerous To Not Be Censorship: https://thefederalist.com/2020/03/02/pro-lifers-social-media-bans-are-too-numerous-to-not-be-censorship/
  16. Cincinnati church wipes out $46.5 million in medical debt for 45,000 families | Fox News: https://www.foxnews.com/us/cincinnati-church-wipes-out-46-5-million-in-medical-debt-largest-amount-for-nonprofit
  17. Evolutionist Admits Darwin’s Connection to Racism | CEH: https://crev.info/2020/02/evolutionist-admits-darwins-connection-to-racism/
  18. ‘Sometimes I Just Want to Scream So that Other Parents Understand’ – She was 12 when a school counselor told Rob’s daughter she was transgender. They picked out a new name and started treating her like a boy at school — without ever calling home.: https://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=WA20B42&f=WU20B06
  19. New Jersey Public Schools To Teach LGBT Ideology In Every Subject: https://thefederalist.com/2020/02/27/new-jersey-public-schools-to-teach-lgbt-ideology-in-every-subject/
  20. Pence Doesn’t Believe in Science?: https://townhall.com/columnists/jerrynewcombe/2020/03/04/pence-doesnt-believe-in-science-n2563207

For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. Philippians 1:21-24

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (2-6-2020)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1400) from Nuggets:

There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus. – Blaise Pascal

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Reason and the Christian Hope – Maybe you’ve been skeptical about the claims of Christianity. You’ve thought the glorious hope of the Christian is just built on wishful thinking. But for the time-being, shelve whatever objections you may have until you’ve carefully and fairly considered the evidence. | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/11742
  2. Change, Yes; Evolution, No | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/natural-selection/change-yes-evolution-no/
  3. Junk DNA ideas have hindered progress in medical science – creation.com: https://creation.com/junk-dna-science-stopper
  4. I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist podcast – “Life is like football”.  In this podcast, Dr. Frank Turek analyzes and responds to a podcast by Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rogers and his girlfriend Danica Patrick, where they briefly mention their views on Christianity and religion: https://subspla.sh/c58bg53
  5. Here’s the Key to Ongoing Deep Faith Conversations with Your Kids: http://christianmomthoughts.com/the-key-to-ongoing-deep-faith-conversations-with-your-kids/
  6. Yosemite Valley – Colossal Ice Carving | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/geology/catastrophism/yosemite-valley-colossal-ice-carving/
  7. Prophecies of Jesus Birth and Genealogy Christian Apologist: https://christian-apologist.com/2019/12/13/prophecies-of-jesus-birth-and-genealogy/
  8. 5 Questions Every Youth Leader and Parent Should be Ready to Answer: https://stevenkozak.com/2019/11/13/5-questions-every-youth-leader-and-parent-should-be-ready-to-answer/

“I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life..” John 5:24

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (12-26-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1400) from Nuggets:

I deserve, I expect, I want, are appetizers we use to feed our own selfishness. -The Love Dare

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Apologetics needs a System Upgrade for Emerging Adults – Articles – BioLogos: https://biologos.org/articles/apologetics-need-a-system-upgrade-for-emerging-adults/
  2. Confidence in Christmas: Why the Nativity story is true: https://www.premierchristianity.com/Past-Issues/2019/December-2019/Confidence-in-Christmas-Why-the-Nativity-story-is-true
  3. Lesbian Ads On The Hallmark Channel Are Just The Beginning: https://thefederalist.com/2019/12/19/for-the-lgbt-mob-lesbian-ads-on-the-hallmark-channel-are-just-the-beginning/
  4. Rapid Limestone Deposits Match Flood Account | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/limestone-deposits-match-flood-account
  5. Dawkins’s Doubts – There are no atheists. But wait, you say, don’t people like Richard Dawkins and many of his followers claim they are atheists? Don’t we call the new breed of activist atheists The New Atheists? Aren’t atheists people who don’t believe in God? Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/world-religions/atheism/dawkins-doubts/
  6. When God Created Space, Where Did He Put It? (You’ll Be Surprised How Practical That Question Can Be) | Thinking Christian: https://www.thinkingchristian.net/posts/2019/11/god-created-space-where-put-it/
  7. A Christmas Meditation on Christ as ‘The Prophet’: https://townhall.com/columnists/jerrynewcombe/2019/12/22/a-christmas-meditation-on-christ-as-the-prophet-n2558241
  8. Three Simple Strategies to Help You Become A Better Christian Case Maker | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/three-simple-strategies-to-help-you-become-a-better-christian-case-maker/
  9. The Jesus Evidence that Turns Atheists into Followers of Christ | CBN News: https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2018/december/you-may-believe-in-the-baby-jesus-but-how-about-god-the-father-son-and-holy-spirit
  10. The Reason for the Season – At Christmas, people all over the world pause to remember the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. This celebration has occurred despite difficulties or circumstances facing us throughout history. Many of Americas presidents have reminded us at Christmastime that Jesus birth has continued to impact the world. – WallBuilders: https://wallbuilders.com/the-reason-for-the-season/
  11. Ready to Give an Answer | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/is-the-bible-true/ready-to-give-an-answer/
  12. Engineered Adaptability: The Need for Biblical Clarity | The Institute for Creation Research: https://www.icr.org/article/need-for-biblical-clarity
  13. Billy Graham – Christmas Message 1953 – YouTube: https://youtu.be/VAjqktkJQZk?t=154

Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. Acts 20:32

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (10-3-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1300) from Nuggets:

Christians believe in the virgin birth of Jesus. Materialists believe in the virgin birth of the cosmos. Choose your miracle. – Glen Scrivener

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. How Long Was Adam in the Garden? | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/bible-characters/adam-and-eve/how-long-was-adam-garden/
  2. How Could Adam Have Named All the Animals in a Single Day? | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/bible-characters/adam-and-eve/how-could-adam-have-named-all-the-animals-in-a-single-day/
  3. Grounded Faith by Terrell Clemmons – Sinking Roots for Youth Ministry in an Age of Advanced Skepticism -Salvo Magazine: https://salvomag.com/article/salvo44/grounded-faith
  4. What are undesigned coincidences, and how are they used in apologetics? | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2019/09/27/what-are-undesigned-coincidences-and-how-are-they-used-in-apologetics/
  5. Quick Challenge Answer: You Shouldn’t Push Your Views On Me –: http://tentmakingchristianity.com/you-shouldnt-push-your-views-on-me/
  6. Information and the origin of life – Did cells write their own software? – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fnlz9b5TZB0
  7. The Atheist Delusion – this is a great 1 hour movie: https://youtu.be/ChWiZ3iXWwM
  8. 3 Overlooked Ways to Do Pre-Evangelism: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/3-overlooked-ways-pre-evangelism/
  9. Pascal’s Wager Made Easy (Part 1) | Apologetics315: https://apologetics315.com/2019/09/pascals-wager-made-easy-part-1/
  10. Pascal’s Wager Made Easy (Part 2) | Apologetics315: https://apologetics315.com/2019/09/pascals-wager-made-easy-part-2/
  11. Faith is NOT Blind – Homeschool 101: https://homeschool-101.com/faith-is-not-blind/
  12. The Virtue of Silence | The Apologers: https://apologers.wordpress.com/2016/01/14/the-virtue-of-silence/
  13. Killing babies is wrong – creation.com: https://creation.com/babies-expense-abortion
  14. Who decided what books would go into the New Testament? Matthew Ruttan: https://matthewruttan.com/2019/06/19/who-decided-what-books-would-go-into-the-new-testament/
  15. What Kind of World Is Needed for Science to Work?: https://www.reasons.org/explore/blogs/reflections/read/reflections/2019/09/17/what-kind-of-world-is-needed-for-science-to-work
  16. Vicarious Liability and the Imputation of Sins | Reasonable Faith: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/question-answer/vicarious-liability-and-the-imputation-of-sins
  17. Incarnation Why God became man – creation.com: https://creation.com/incarnation-why-god-became-man
  18. God would not allow evil and suffering (Possible responses you could give): https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/quick-shot-god-would-not-allow-evil-and-suffering/
  19. 4 Critical Tips for Apologists | Sean McDowell: https://seanmcdowell.org/blog/4-critical-tips-for-apologists
  20. How I Get So Much Done | Sean McDowell: https://seanmcdowell.org/blog/how-i-get-so-much-done
  21. What Do You Mean By That? A Look At Questioning Evangelism: Responding To Five Common Objections On A College Campus THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2019/10/02/what-do-you-mean-by-that-a-look-at-questioning-evangelism-responding-to-five-common-objections-on-a-college-campus-4/

No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse. Psalms 25:3

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (9-19-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1300) from Nuggets:

There’s a reason it’s okay to gas termites and not Jews. It’s because we know that people are different from other creatures in an important and wonderful way.  – Greg Koukl, The Story of Reality

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. What does it mean to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves (Matthew 10:16)? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/wise-serpents-harmless-doves.html
  2. Piers, When Did Jesus Say That? | The Stream: https://stream.org/piers-jesus-say/
  3. What are the consequences of sin? | GotQuestions.org: https://www.gotquestions.org/consequences-of-sin.html
  4. Thoughts from Greg and Amy on Having Meaningful Spiritual Conversations | Stand to Reason: https://www.str.org/blog/thoughts-greg-and-amy-having-meaningful-spiritual-conversations
  5. 3 Reasons Why Christians Should Be Learning About Other Religions Christian Defenders: https://christiandefenders.org/3-reasons-why-christians-should-be-learning-about-other-religions/
  6. My Favorite Argument for the Existence of God: https://thinkdivinely.com/my-favorite-apologetic-argument-for-the-existence-of-god/
  7. Magnificent Motors | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/biology/microbiology/magnificent-motors/
  8. What Is the Preborn? | Human Defense: https://humandefense.com/what-is-the-preborn/
  9. Netherlands: Muslim who stabbed Jews grew more devout in the months before the assault: https://www.jihadwatch.org/2019/09/netherlands-muslim-who-stabbed-jews-grew-more-devout-in-the-months-before-the-assault
  10. Exposing the Truth About Jihad – Part 1 on Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/327205953
  11. Exposing the Truth About Jihad – Part 2 on Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/327532185
  12. The Muslim Brotherhood: Origin, Identity, and Agenda (2019 Edition) on Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/333453389
  13. Correcting four myths about the history of the Crusades | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2019/09/11/correcting-four-myths-about-the-history-of-the-crusades-6/
  14. Johns Hopkins professor on child transgender trend: Many will regret this | The College Fix: https://www.thecollegefix.com/johns-hopkins-professor-on-child-transgender-trend-many-will-regret-this/
  15. Newly passed California resolution blames religious groups for LGBT suicides | LifeSite: https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/newly-passed-california-resolution-blames-religious-groups-for-lgbt-suicides
  16. The LGBT endgame is to destroy Christianity | LifeSite: https://www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/the-lgbt-endgame-is-to-destroy-christianity
  17. ASSURANCE, by J.C. Ryle: https://gracegems.org/Ryle/assurance.htm

He who has ears, let him hear.” The disciples came to him and asked, “Why do you speak to the people in parables?” He replied, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them.” Matthew 13:9-11

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (9-5-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1300) from Nuggets:

It only takes one person to forgive. But it takes two to reconcile. – Tom Ascol

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. New study: there is no gay gene that causes homosexuality | WINTERY KNIGHT: https://winteryknight.com/2019/08/31/new-study-there-is-no-gay-gene-that-determines-homosexuality/
  2. Joseph, Pharaoh, and the Famine: http://www.biblehistory.net/newsletter/joseph_pharaoh_famine.htm
  3. Is the Biblical story of Joseph in Egypt verified? ChristianAnswers.Net: https://christiananswers.net/q-abr/abr-a016.html
  4. How Developing A Forensic Faith Increases Your Christian Confidence – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0-Z_EecKGU
  5. The Circus of Roman Emperor Nero: Where St. Peter was martyred | Still Current: https://stillcurrent.blog/2016/11/09/the-circus-of-roman-emperor-nero-where-st-peter-was-martyred/
  6. 4 Ways Parents Bore Their Kids Out of Christianity – Natasha Crain: http://christianmomthoughts.com/4-ways-parents-bore-their-kids-out-of-christianity/
  7. COSMOLOGY AND ITS ATTEMPT TO FIND THE FIRST CAUSE: https://mannsword.blogspot.com/2019/07/cosmology-and-its-attempt-to-find-first.html
  8. The Basic Argument for the Deity of Christ – David O’Connell, Sufficient Evidence: https://warrenapologetics.org/sufficientevidence/2019/7/16/the-basic-argument-for-the-deity-of-christ
  9. How Do We Align Our Careers with Our Faith in Christ? https://www.thomasnelsonbibles.com/how-do-we-align-our-careers-with-our-faith-in-christ/
  10. The Three Most Important “Trajectory Decisions” Every University Student Must Make – J. Warner Wallace: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/the-three-most-important-trajectory-decisions-every-university-student-must-make/

Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water. Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. James 3:11-14

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (8-1-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1250) from Nuggets:

We do well when we are angry with sin, because of the wrong which it commits against our good and gracious God; or with ourselves because we remain so foolish after so much divine instruction. – Charles Spurgeon

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Ravi Zacharias on the Ben Shapiro Show THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2019/07/26/ravi-zacharias-on-the-ben-shapiro-show/
  2. Google says “Christian” unacceptable keyword, “Muslim” okay. people mock the idea of Christian persecution in America today, but here is one such example of persecution by exclusion from a media giant.: https://youtu.be/J0Ev02c0WnY
  3. John Bunyan – Biography and Life Facts: https://www.christianity.com/church/church-history/timeline/1601-1700/john-bunyan-11630083.html
  4. Is the Bible True? The Cumulative Case for the Reliability of the Gospels (Free Bible Insert) | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/is-the-bible-true-the-cumulative-case-for-the-reliability-of-the-gospels-free-bible-insert/
  5. Voted the Best Christian Book of All Time: https://www.reasons.org/explore/blogs/reflections/read/reflections/2019/07/23/voted-the-best-christian-book-of-all-time
  6. Theories that explain everything | George’s Journal: https://georgesjournal.net/2019/07/29/theories-that-explain-everything/
  7. The Prosperity Gospel and Biblical Promises: How should we understand them? Coffeehouse Questions: https://coffeehousequestions.com/2019/07/28/the-prosperity-gospel-and-biblical-promises-how-should-we-understand-them/
  8. A Long Way from Bake My Cake – Break Point: http://www.breakpoint.org/2019/07/breakpoint-a-long-way-from-bake-my-cake/
  9. The Bible Comes Alive in Israel | Stand to Reason: https://www.str.org/blog/bible-comes-alive-israel
  10. Atheism Is Inconsistent with the Scientific Method, Prizewinning Physicist Says – Scientific American. This is a Jewish Physicist and I like some of the things he has to say. For example, about scientism and about the “Theory of Everything”: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/atheism-is-inconsistent-with-the-scientific-method-prizewinning-physicist-says/#
  11. Celebrating new religious freedom law, Bolivian evangelicals push for more – Religion News Service: https://religionnews.com/2019/07/29/celebrating-new-religious-freedom-law-bolivian-evangelicals-push-for-more/
  12. Hitler’s God: 3 Reasons Hitler Wasn’t Christian iApologia: http://iapologia.com/hitlers-god-3-reasons-hitler-wasnt-christian/
  13. The Gospel – Paul Washer: https://youtu.be/cqbPaXhK4Zw
  14. Science Doesn’t Say Anything- Scientists Do – Frank Turek: https://crossexamined.org/science-doesnt-say-anything-scientists-do/
  15. Q&A session after “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist” lecture with Dr. Frank Turek – 54 minutes : https://youtu.be/zSqb5Q8zjx4
  16. If God is just, then why give eternal punishment for temporal sin? Vince Vitale and Ravi Zacharias: https://youtu.be/zb5fEK99BIk
  17. How can so many people read the Bible, but still die unbelieving? Ravi Zacharias and Abdu Murray: https://youtu.be/4CIGJw-XRq8
  18. Why would God make me a lesbian? Is it wrong to love someone of the same sex? Q&A session with Dr. Frank Turek answering: https://youtu.be/VShB2Y6A5Kc
  19. Do you think homosexuality is wrong? Q&A session with Dr. Frank Turek: https://youtu.be/JBHodHT3pOk
  20. The Case for Christ, Lee Strobel: https://youtu.be/67uj2qvQi_k
  21. Developing a forensic faith (47 minute lecture) – J. Warner Wallace: https://youtu.be/T_lyyw-x2Kk
  22. Evidence for the Resurrection – Craig Hazen, 1 hour lecture: https://youtu.be/ocbtjLgUnQY
  23. Crazy College Courses and the Religion of Sex: https://townhall.com/columnists/frankturek/2017/12/20/crazy-college-courses-and-the-religion-of-sex-n2424553
  24. I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist – Dr. Frank Turek: https://youtu.be/_sgxYiuTJNo
  25. Is the New Testament true? Dr. Frank Turek: https://youtu.be/iuV3Qv4whNY
  26. What if they don’t believe the Bible? Nabeel Qureshi: https://youtu.be/g7LXcYzF12Q
  27. Seven Days that Divide the World – John Lennox: https://youtu.be/0FmO2XKMe6g
  28. Does the Bible Utilize One Type of Apologetic Methodology? THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2019/07/31/does-the-bible-utilize-one-type-of-apologetic-methodology/
  29. Famed Yale computer science professor quits believing Darwin’s theories | The College Fix: https://www.thecollegefix.com/famed-yale-computer-science-professor-quits-believing-darwins-theories/
  30. Church of the Apostles discovered near Sea of Galilee, archaeologists say | Fox News: https://www.foxnews.com/science/church-of-the-apostles-discovered-archaeologists-say

I thought in my heart, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good.” But that also proved to be meaningless. “Laughter,” I said, “is foolish. And what does pleasure accomplish?” I tried cheering myself with wine, and embracing folly –my mind still guiding me with wisdom. I wanted to see what was worthwhile for men to do under heaven during the few days of their lives. I undertook great projects: I built houses for myself and planted vineyards. I made gardens and parks and planted all kinds of fruit trees in them. I made reservoirs to water groves of flourishing trees. I bought male and female slaves and had other slaves who were born in my house. I also owned more herds and flocks than anyone in Jerusalem before me. I amassed silver and gold for myself, and the treasure of kings and provinces. I acquired men and women singers, and a harem as well–the delights of the heart of man. I became greater by far than anyone in Jerusalem before me. In all this my wisdom stayed with me. I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my work, and this was the reward for all my labor. Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun. Ecclesiastes 2:1-11

Blessings to you all

This Week’s Conversations

Wednesday July 24th

A Christian friend and I had lunch with our Hindu / Skeptic friend.  During the course of our conversation, here are some of the objections he brought up:

  1. He believes that all paths/religions are valid – there is not 1 true religion
  2. Evolution – thinks that all true scientists believe in evolution. If there are any anti-evolution writings, their origin can always be traced back to a spiritual source, and therefore can’t be trusted (biased).
  3. Many of his objections were of the category, “God doesn’t do what I expect (or how I would do it), and therefore He doesn’t exist.
  4. Inequity – bad people do well, good people suffer.
  5. All religion is man-made.
  6. Leaders rise up and have millions of followers and people end up deifying them. This has happened numerous times in history and Jesus is just another example of that
  7. There is no physical evidence of God or Christianity
  8. He is absolutely certain that there is no heaven or hell. This earth is where heaven or hell are.
  9. God can’t control his people – he can’t make them believe. Also, the ones who do believe, split into “denominations”.  He named Protestants, Catholics and Mormons.
  10. He challenged, “So what happens if everyone believes in Jesus?” Do all the problems go away?
  11. He wanted to know about believing in Jesus, “what difference does it make?” I told him about the wrath of God that each person has due to him for his sin and how believing that Jesus died to pay the penalty for your sins reconciles you to God, making peace between you and God, since Jesus took your punishment, but if you reject Jesus and what He did, you have to pay the penalty for your own sins.
  12. He doesn’t trust the Bible – anytime we would bring up what it says, he would dismiss it. Anytime we would bring up what Jesus said, he would say that no one knows what Jesus actually said – that’s just what His followers said that He said.
  13. He believes that the followers of Jesus (who saw Him risen from the dead) were hallucinating. He believes they talked themselves into believing.
  14. His standard of belief is very high – he won’t believe unless God personally talks to him. Even then, he might think he is hallucinating.
  15. He wants “proof” for God.
  16. He wonders why Jesus showed up in this little insignificant place like Israel 2000 years ago. Why didn’t He show up in a big place, like New York City where many millions of people would’ve seen Him?
  17. He wanted to know “what is God?” I said, “Creator”.  My friend said, “God is Spirit”.  He said, “So, you can’t see God, right?”  He went on saying that he can’t believe in anything he can’t see or detect in anyway.

Needless to say, we answered his questions the best we could – I thought we gave very reasonable answers, but he wasn’t convinced by them.  Interestingly enough, on the way out to the parking lot, we were talking about who’s right and who’s wrong and I made the comment, “Maybe I’m wrong (although I don’t think I am), please convince me!”  He said, “I can’t convince you, I’m lost!”  I thought that was a remarkable admission and told him so and hugged him goodbye.  I don’t think he knows the profoundness of his admission there – he is truly “lost” – in the biblical sense.  Jesus came to seek and to save the lost, and I pray that Jesus seeks and finds him, and similarly, I hope our friend seeks Jesus with a sincere heart!

Yesterday (Friday July 27th), shortly before it was time to leave work for the day, I saw a Muslim colleague of mine who will be quitting work next week and moving back to his country of origin.  I wanted to talk to him and tell him I was really going to miss him and our conversations.  He had another friend with him who I hadn’t met before.  It turns out that guy works at our company on a different floor than me and in fact he is a Christian too!  Anyway, my Muslim friend asked me something about whether the Bible spoke about his country of origin, so I showed him my Nuggets web site and searched the full Bible and found out that what he was asking me appeared in the Bible twice (Gen. 2:14, Dan. 10:4).  I will let you (the reader) determine what he asked me to search for 🙂  Anyway, that opened a spiritual conversation that lasted about 45 minutes (caused me to get home late from work :()!  It was a great conversation in which we compared and contrasted Christianity and Islam, and talked about our respective worldviews.  I was able to share the Gospel with him as I explained the core message of Christianity, when he asked what the absolute necessary thing was to be a Christian (we had been talking about baptism, because another colleague of his is Mormon and had discussed baptism previously).  During that part of our conversation, I shared Romans 10:9 – “if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”  I emphasized that you have to believe in the Deity, Death and Resurrection of Jesus and trust in Him as your Lord and Savior in order to be a Christian.  Of course he said that Muslims don’t believe that Jesus was crucified, but that Judas was crucified in His place.  I searched my copy of the Qur’an on my Kindle for Sura 4:157 and showed him that.  During the conversation, he was sharing various verses out of the Qur’an showing that all paths lead to God.  He is a very moderate Muslim and made extreme effort to communicate that he respects all religions and that it is good people who go to heaven (from all religions).  Wow…  A lot could’ve been said there (and some was said in response at the time), but we would need many hours to fully unpack this topic and make sure he understands the biblical view and how it is different from Islam.  Anyway, it was a great conversation and I will miss him and do pray that he would be reconciled to the one true God, Yahweh!  I also hope and pray that I can continue to meet with and fellowship with the other new Christian friend I met during that conversation.

mid-week apologetics booster (7-18-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 1200) from Nuggets:

Yes, I know it sounds cliché, but I’ve got to say it, because I believe at the core of my being it is true. Jesus is the answer. Jesus is the answer for a tragedy such as what happened in Florida. Jesus is the answer for the man who committed this atrocity. Jesus is the answer for the people on whom this atrocity was committed. Jesus is the answer for the society who is trying to cope with this tragedy. Jesus was the answer, the only answer, for those who perished in this tragedy. Jesus transforms sinners into Spirit-filled believers, who exhibit the fruits of the spirit, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control. Jesus is the answer!
To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. Can You Keep a Secret? So Can Your Daughter’s School. Imagine sending your daughter off to school only to find out that she was headed for an abortion appointment instead. Then imagine this: her teachers knew and never told you. In California, parents don’t have to imagine it. Thanks to a new undercover video, they know — it’s already happening.: https://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=WA19G08&f=WU19G04
  2. Book Plunge: Can We Trust The Gospels? – A review of Peter J. Williams’s book: https://www.deeperwatersapologetics.com/?p=11929
  3. Bloom Where You’re Planted | Stand to Reason: https://www.str.org/articles/bloom-where-you-re-planted
  4. Bloom Where You’re Planted (shorter article by Melinda Penner): https://www.str.org/blog/bloom-where-you-re-planted
  5. How Should a Christian Vote? – One Minute Apologist: https://oneminuteapologist.com/blog/how-should-a-christian-vote/
  6. The Ark Encounter review – the Ark was absolutely thrilling, and at the end of the day, worth the price of admission to be sure. : https://thinkdivinely.com/the-ark-encounter/
  7. Old Earth Belief: http://oldearth.org/old.htm
  8. Understanding Worldview – Engaging the World Around Us – Impact 360 Institute: https://www.impact360institute.org/articles/understanding-worldview-engaging-the-world-around-us/
  9. Is Religion Just a Social Construct? | Strange Notions: https://strangenotions.com/is-religion-just-a-social-construct/
  10. Old Testament Prophecies of Jesus Resurrection | Reasonable Faith: https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/question-answer/old-testament-prophecies-of-jesus-resurrection-1
  11. Listen: Nancy Pearcey on the Surprising Early History of Darwinism | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2019/06/listen-nancy-pearcey-on-the-surprising-early-history-of-darwinism/
  12. Why Is Evidence Important for Faith? – FaithGateway: https://www.faithgateway.com/why-is-evidence-important-for-faith/
  13. Doesn’t the Bible Say True Faith is Blind? | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/doesnt-the-bible-say-true-faith-is-blind/
  14. Trend-line of Scientific Discovery Points To A Creator – Part 2: http://natureandscripture.blogspot.com/2019/06/trend-line-of-scientific-discovery_20.html
  15. New Engineering Textbook, Hacking the Cosmos, Argues for Intelligent Design | Evolution News: https://evolutionnews.org/2019/06/new-engineering-textbook-hacking-the-cosmos-argues-for-intelligent-design/
  16. Quantum Mechanics and the Laws of Logic, Part 1: https://www.reasons.org/explore/blogs/reflections/read/reflections/2019/06/11/quantum-mechanics-and-the-laws-of-logic-part-1
  17. Responding to You Can’t Prove or Disprove God’s Existence THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2019/06/07/responding-to-you-cant-prove-or-disprove-gods-existence-2/
  18. How to Share Your Faith with Friends of other Faiths: https://www.crosswalk.com/faith/spiritual-life/how-to-share-your-faith-with-friends-of-other-faiths.html
  19. Five Fake News Stories That People Believe about Early Christianity Canon Fodder: https://www.michaeljkruger.com/five-fake-news-stories-that-people-believe-about-early-christianity/
  20. Detecting False Dichotomies that Hinder the Mission of the Church | Douglas Groothuis, Ph.D.: https://douglasgroothuis.com/2019/06/06/detecting-false-dichotomies-that-hinder-the-mission-of-the-church/
  21. A Christian Perspective on Pagan and Secular Belief Systems: https://www.reasons.org/explore/blogs/reflections/read/reflections/2019/06/04/a-christian-perspective-on-pagan-and-secular-belief-systems
  22. Treating the Gospel Like a Cookie Rather Than a Cure | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/treating-the-gospel-like-a-cookie-rather-than-a-cure/
  23. IS JESUS’ DEATH AS A PUNISHMENT FOR SINS CENTRAL TO CHRISTIANITY…OR COSMIC CHILD ABUSE?: http://2besure.blogspot.com/2019/05/someone-in-one-of-online-groups-i-am.html
  24. Does God Know & Not Know Simultaneously? Free Thinking Ministries: https://freethinkingministries.com/does-god-know-not-know-simultaneously/
  25. 7 Unbiblical Statements Christians Believe | RELEVANT Magazine: https://relevantmagazine.com/god/7-unbiblical-statements-christians-believe-2/
  26. The Sexual Ethics of Jesus and His People | Radically Christian: https://radicallychristian.com/the-sexual-ethics-of-jesus-and-his-people
  27. Why Everyone Should Believe that the Gospels are Reliable – Capturing Christianity: https://capturingchristianity.com/why-everyone-should-believe-that-the-gospels-are-reliable/

He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and perch in its branches.” Matthew 13:31-32

Blessings to you all

Conversation with a Hindu friend

I had a conversation while I was at a Hindu friend’s house for a birthday party last night.  This friend of mine is not a real religious Hindu, but more of a cultural Hindu, who respects it as his family (and wife’s) religion and tradition.  We had quite a long conversation (over an hour) about the existence of God, the Christian faith, etc.  Here are some of the objections he was raising:

  1. Religion was created by men to control people – it is all made up. You’ll burn in hell if you don’t behave according to what this book says.  Jesus is always watching you.  Interestingly, he mentioned that Hinduism does have a concept of hell, and hellfire as well. He said that this is only experienced by humans (not other life forms) who do something terribly wrong, let’s say murder, then you go to eternal hellfire. I told him but that was the first time I’ve ever heard that. His wife, who was sitting there, but not involved in the conversation, confirmed it.
  2. He complained that some of these “people in religion” (the leaders) are smooth talkers and they manipulate people for their own benefit (private planes, big houses, etc.)
  3. I asked him to forget about “religion” for a second and focus on whether God exists. He said that he sees no evidence that God exists.  However, I was finally able to convince him that it was reasonable to believe that a Creator of the universe and life exists (via the cosmological and design arguments), but then he said, “OK, so if God did create the universe, so what?”  I said if there is a Creator, then we ought to try to know Him and determine if He’s revealed Himself to mankind.
  4. He questioned why there is only life here in the universe, since the universe is so big. Why do you need this big universe if you’re only going to have life here?  It was not clear whether he truly believed that there was no other life in the universe, but I think it may’ve been more of a critique of the Christian view of God creating this gigantic universe to only have life in one galaxy and one planet out of billions.
  5. We had a discussion about science and Christianity. I mentioned that many of the scientists of history were Christians, I named Newton, Copernicus, Galileo and that there were many others. The reason they studied science passionately was because they believed that God created the universe and it was meant to be understood by us because it operated in an orderly, law-like fashion, according to the laws of nature, physics, chemistry, etc. Since nature operates according to such predictable laws (e.g. we can land a rover on Mars because we can so accurately predict the path of the planets around the sun), it is reasonable to believe that these laws of nature had to be given by a “Law Giver”.
  6. He asserted that all religions are the same. He questioned the story of Jesus coming to Israel.  Why did he come at that time and only one place?  He said, if he was a god, he would’ve came to every continent (basically, I think he was saying he would’ve made his existence irrefutable).  He asked, was Jesus a messenger? Why did He come to earth?  I replied that He came to seek and to save lost humanity.  Yes, He was a messenger also, in the sense that He taught and healed people, but he didn’t just come as a messenger.
  7. In response to me telling him something that Jesus said, he also said, “No one can know what Jesus said”.
  8. He said, “How do you know what is the true religion? Many people wrote down books from other religions.  How do we know Bible is true over those?”  When he said that other religions have their books too, I contrasted the Bible, which was written by 40 authors over a period of 1500 years – these authors were different types of people such as fisherman, shepherds, military generals and kings writing at different times in history and locations in different geographical locations.  However, they were all writing a single, consistent message throughout the Bible. He asked “Why should I believe them more than the writers of other religions? For example, Islam…”  I answered, “Yes, Islam, where Muhammad is the only person that supposedly received that message over a period of 23 years in a cave from an angel – and we just have to believe him?”  I continued, “The same thing regarding Joseph Smith the founder of Mormonism, who claims to have had a vision of Jesus and God the Father and claims to have been given ancient golden plates containing a divinely inspired message?  Believing 40 different eyewitnesses to historical events is much more reasonable than believing religions that are based on the private vision of one individual with no other corroboration.” At this point he took exception because, he said, “Mormonism is Christian”. I said no, it is not.  They separated themselves from other Christians initially, and said that all existing Christian denominations were heresy. He challenged me, “Mormons believe in Jesus Christ right?” I said yes but, they don’t believe in the same Jesus that is described in the Bible – that Jesus is the one true God. In addition to that, they have a separate scriptures called “The Book of Mormon”, which does not agree with the Bible.
  9. He thought that Christianity started when Jesus came, two thousand years ago. But I corrected him that the Bible starts at the beginning of creation. The first sentence of the Bible is “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth”. He was confused and said who wrote that part? I mentioned that Moses wrote the first five books the Bible that include the account of creation. He asked, “So, Moses wrote about Jesus?” I told him yes that he and other Old Testament writers predicted the coming Messiah. The Bible contains over 300 prophecies of the coming Messiah, most of which are fulfilled in Jesus.
  10. He complained about injustices in the world. He gave the example of a faithful Christian couple who has a child with birth defects and then lives “a life of hell”.  Why isn’t their God taking care of them?  And people talk about how God has a plan, God loves you, but meanwhile, people go on suffering greatly (I’m paraphrasing – I can’t remember exactly).

During our conversation, he was a bit of a steamroller – but a friendly steamroller.  But he hardly allowed me to get any words in – he just kept bringing up objection after another – and if I got a chance to answer an objection, he would just move on to another objection.

He has agreed to have lunch to discuss this more.  I told him that he should come to lunch with me another Christian friend of mine (who he also knows from a company we worked at together) and he sounded interested.

At the end of our conversation, I asked if he would be willing to read a book.  He said yes.  I gave him a copy of a book I just happened to have in my car: Is God Just a Human Invention and Seventeen Other Questions Raised by the New Atheists.  I asked him to just devote an hour or less and read chapter 1 to start.  He said he’s “lazy to read”, but said he would do it (I don’t have confidence that he will).

Please pray for my friend that this conversation would get him to think and consider whether he is wrong in his worldview and for another chance to continue the conversation.

 

Conversation with a teacher on a plane

Today, I was on a plane trip for business and was sitting next to a person who is a teacher of Electrical Engineering at a community college and also works at a local university. Initially, there was just the normal chit chat, then she started to sleep for a while, and I started to read the book that I brought with me:

Is God Just a Human Invention?
And Seventeen Other Questions Raised By The New Atheists

It is a fantastic book – this is my second time reading it – and while she was sleeping, I made it through chapter 1 (Is Faith Irrational?) and was starting to read chapter 2 (Are Science and Christianity at Odds?), when the flight attendants came by and asked if we wanted a snack or to order any food, which woke her up and got me to stop reading.

So, after we were given our snacks, we both started to eat and then started to engage again in some conversation. There was a lot of talk about why there are not that many women in technology fields and other various topics.
Then at one point I saw an opportunity to bring up a “theological term” in the context of our conversation (which I then explained). That gave her an opening to ask me about the book I was reading. She’d noticed it and was curious what it was about. I read the title to her and she asked who the author was. So, I handed her the book, (open to the table of contents) so she could see all of the titles of the chapters. she also took note of the editors/authors, Sean McDowell and Jonathan Morrow, from the back of the book.
After taking note of that, she asked me, “So what’s your position on these topics?” That was a good sign, that she was willing to talk about these topics! I’m guessing that she thought maybe I was a skeptic, who was investigating the truth of the Christian worldview. So I told her that I was a Christian.
What ensued over the next 1.5-2 hours was an in-depth conversation about science, religion and (specifically) Christianity. It was a great conversation – we were very respectful, calm and engaged, listening to each other as we learned about our respective worldviews.
We started this part of the conversation talking about the existence of God. I quickly found out that she is a person who, though being in a technical field herself, believes that there are many truths, and many realities. Each person can have their own truth that is meaningful to them. I also found out that she doesn’t really find the questions about God as relevant to her daily life. I suggested to her that questions of our ultimate destination are in fact meaningful to everyone on the earth. That is one issue that we will all have to face. assessing what we will experience on the other side of the door of death. She, however, feels that our behavior and how we get along as people here on earth, and well as preserving the earth are the most important things. During the conversation, I tried to explain to her, the nature of my faith – that, all humans are like jurors who are hearing both sides of a case from opposing “expert witnesses”. We have to evaluate what is said by the opposing expert witnesses and determine which case seems more reasonable. So, my faith is not a “mystical” thing – not a blind faith – but rather that I view the existence of God and the Christian view of the nature of Jesus to be the best inference from the evidence that we have available.That being said, I do have faith in Jesus, which is really a synonym for trust. This seemed to really puzzle her, and she communicated that she does not believe that there’s any evidence for the existence of God and that faith is an individual thing that is meaningful to the person. She was curious to know what I thought was evidence for the existence of God. So I talked about the universe and the fact that it had a beginning – that whatever begins to exist must have a cause. We now know from science that the universe began to exist – that is – all space time and matter came into being at the Big Bang. So, whatever was the cause of the universe had to be spaceless, timeless, and immaterial. She seemed to take issue with me saying it had to be. Additionally at this point, she brought up the question of who created God? To which I responded, since the beginning of the Big Bang was the beginning of time, the cause of the universe must be timeless, that is eternal.
She was wondering what the current scientific response to what I was saying was. I explained that the current thinking is what is called the multiverse. She was completely unfamiliar with that term. So I explained that the multiverse is a sort of universe generator, which supposedly has generated innumerable other undetectable universes, and that we just happen to be in the universe that appears to be designed for life, and thus, are here and able to observe it. Then, she was curious about my statement that the universe appears to be designed for life. So, I explained about the cosmological constants and quantities that are fine-tuned to particular values which, had they been different, would prohibit the existence of life in this universe. She seemed to understand these constants and quantities, and I didn’t have to give any further explanation on that topic. But oddly enough, she was very hesitant to agree that the Big Bang is actually the explanation for the beginning of the universe. She clarified that this is the best that scientists can come up with right now, and that future scientific discoveries could change that.
I went on and continued to explain other evidence for the existence of God, such as the argument from the design of DNA (the informational equivalent of roughly 8000 books inside every DNA molecule) and the complexity of biological life at the cellular level.
During this conversation, we talked about many other topics and she raised many other objections against Christianity and theism in general – again, this was all done in a very congenial and friendly conversational way. There was no animus in the conversation at all.
Here’s a summary of what I think she believes.
She believes that Jesus of Nazareth was a real person (or someone like him actually existed).
She believes that the Bible was written so long ago that it’s hard for her to see it as being real. I clarified that the important time Gap is the time between the events, and when they were recorded, not the time between the events and today. We also had, at this point, and discussion about how she knows about the existence of George Washington, and his doings. I was trying to get her to agree that the same way she knows about (and trust the accounts of ) George Washington, is the same way she can know about Jesus.
She completely rejects all miracle reports. In response to this, I asked her, “if there is a God who created the universe and everything in it, isn’t it reasonable to believe that the Being who created the universe and established all the laws that govern it could alter how things occur inside the universe?” She countered with an example that, if a woman gives birth to a baby, does that mean the woman can control everything that happens inside the baby? I acknowledge that that was a good point, but the human mother and the baby are of the same species. But God in the universe are completely different. So I think the analogy fails.
She finds it more difficult to believe in the existence of a Creator of the universe than she does to believe that Jesus existed. At this point, I referred back to the cosmological argument that I’d talked previously with her about. I also emphasized that, if you think about it, there must have been something that was eternal, whether that be God, or the universe itself. One of them must have been eternal. Otherwise, there would be nothing at all. I asked her to consider the point, why is there something rather than nothing? She had a problem understanding the question, then I explained it and, again, she didn’t think it was irrelevant question. she, unlike me does not think about questions of our origin, or our destination.
Even if Jesus existed, and there were eyewitnesses of him, she doesn’t think that what he is reported to have said in the Bible is necessarily what he actually said. At this point, I spoke a little bit about the fact that the Bible was written as 27 books by 9 authors, over a period of 50 years, within the lifetime of the eyewitnesses. so, with that information, what you have to evaluate is the reliability of these eyewitnesses. much in the same way that our criminal justice system evaluates eyewitnesses. Were they there and available to observe the event? Do they have any reason to lie?Is there corroboration from other sources? We also talked a little bit about the nature of eyewitness testimony and that diverging details are to be expected in authentic eyewitness testimony. In the case of the eyewitnesses that wrote down the historical accounts of Jesus, they were willing to go to their deaths proclaiming an account that they knew whether it was true or false.
She stated that the people who wrote it down wrote it down long after he lived.She also stated that these people couldn’t even write. In response to these assertions I explained that the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD is not even mentioned in the New Testament.So, that is evidence that the writing was before 70 AD oh, well the other eyewitnesses we’re still alive. also I mentioned to her that the apostle Paul, who wrote one half of the New Testament books was a scholar, so yes, he could write.
She talked about wars in the name of religion, and she talked about people who are “true believers” who do horrible things. I readily agreed with her on this point, that there are those who, throughout the history of Christianity, have done horrible things in the name of Christ. That grieves me as well.
She contrasted the behavior of atheists, with that of Christians, and suggested that sometimes, the atheists actually behave better because of the way that they were brought up. In response to this point I talked about how there is no one perfect, and that according to the Christian worldview, everyone has sinned.we are all guilty before God. She admitted to not really understanding what sin was. I explained that anything less than perfection was sin. I asked her if she had ever told a lie? She said yes but only in a moral dilemma where it was better to lie than to tell the truth so as not to hurt someone. I asked her about stealing and lust. She would not admit to doing anything wrong (wow). But yet, when she agreed that no one was perfect, I explained that God’s standard is perfection, so in this sense, everyone is guilty before God. And I went on to emphasize, that wouldn’t this be a wonderful world if everyone did follow those rules listed out in the ten commandments, that they would love their neighbors theirselves, that they would respect and honor their parents, that they would not lie, steal, commit adultery and she agreed that this would be a utopia if that were the case.

She believes that the term Christian can mean whatever the person feels it too mean. She personally believes that Christian is more of a disposition, or a way of behaving. That we say that when someone is kind to another or charitable, they are acting “Christian”. I asked her, since she’s also an anthropologist, whether she knew what the origin of the term Christian was. Oddly, she thought that didn’t matter. I told her that Christian means follower of Christ, or little Christ. I also asked her at this point what she thought that Jesus would think about this issue. What would he consider a Christian?of course, since she doesn’t think that we have the actual words that Jesus spoke, she claimed to have no idea what Jesus would think about this.

We talked a little bit about evolution. She said she didn’t know whether I believed in evolution. I asked her, “what do you mean by evolution? If you mean change over time, I certainly believe it, it is undeniable. However, if you mean that all life forms on earth today descended from a single cell organism in the distant past, I don’t think that the fossil evidence supports that assertion.”. I went on to explain that in Darwin’s day, there was limited knowledge of the fossil record, but now over a hundred and fifty years later, we have explored much more of it, and are still unable to find the evolutionary precursors of many of the existing life-forms today. At this point, I also mentioned the Cambrian explosion. She was unfamiliar with it. I talked about how over 20 of the current phyla of animals came into existence in a “geological instant” – with no precursors found in the fossil record. This fossil evidence demands an explanation. She didn’t have an answer for this topic. However, she said that she thought Christians in the 19th century were against evolution, not based on scientific evidence, but rather, because it conflicted with their view of the world. She also mentioned that there are Christians who evidently believed that the universe is only 4,000 years old. So we continued on this topic and I explained to her the controversy between old earth creationists and young earth creationists. she was surprised to learn that there are in fact old earth creationists who accept the scientific dating of the universe and of the earth, yet still believe that God was the creator of the universe.I explained to her the different meanings of the Hebrew word for day and how there are many Christians who interpret “day” to mean “age” or “epoch”, not a normal 24 hour period. I also explained to her the young earth creationists contend that there are assumptions built into the scientific dating methods and therefore they are unreliable, and have shown at times to be unreliable when samples of known age are submitted to laboratories for testing and I received back with much longer ages than known age. At this point, I also talked a little bit about the historical situation in the 16th century with Galileo. How at that time there were the “fixed earthers” who believed that the sun rotates around the earth and who believe that the earth must be stationary, because the Bible says that it is fixed in space and rests on pillars. Then there were those (including Galileo) who believed that the earth rotated around the sun. Nowadays, hardly anyone, Christian or secular, believes that the earth is fixed in space. We unanimously believe the evidence which suggests that the earth rotates around the sun. It is non-controversial. I think that one day we may get there on the age of the universe, where all Christians come to accept the scientific consensus without controversy. We also talked about the problem of distant starlight. I told her that I typically try to stay out of those controversies about the age of the earth and the age of the universe. Normally I remain engaged on the topics of the existence of God, the design life, and the resurrection of Jesus.

So, all of this dialog occurred in a very respectful way, and was interspersed in our conversation. She didn’t bring up all these objections at once. During the course of the conversation, I tried to answer most of her objections. We spoke for a long, long time, so there was a lot of back-and-forth conversation. I wouldn’t even call it a debate.
I wish I’d had a tape recorder running, because I would’ve loved to be able to go back and hear all the things that she brought up and how I’d responded to them.I certainly did not list them all here. Overall, it was a very good conversation and we ended the conversation on a positive tone. It sounded like much of what I was telling her in response to her objections she had never heard before.
So, I think it was a successful encounter. Earlier in the day, I’d been praying to God for the opportunity to talk to someone on the flight. Then as all the passengers were boarding the plane, and I was already seated, while they were walking down the aisle, I was praying that God would be preparing someone to sit next to me who’d be ready to hear what I would have to say. I feel that He did answer that prayer! I will be praying for her, that maybe I put a stone in her shoe, and gave her something to think about, something to annoy her (in a good way). I didn’t share the gospel in a classic sense, but I did talk about God, Jesus, sin, heaven, hell, and faith, so we covered just about all the basics.
Thank you Lord for blessing me with this great opportunity. May you make it fruitful. In Jesus’ holy and precious name I pray, Amen.

mid-week apologetics booster (3-28-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 900) from Nuggets:

Grace can be and sometimes is abused. By that I mean exercising ones liberty without wisdom, having no concern over whether it offends or wounds the young and impressionable fellow believer. But I must hasten to add that I believe such restraint is an individual matter. It is not to be legislated, not something to be forced by someone else. Limitations are appropriate and necessary, but I fail to find in Scripture any place where one is to require such restraint from another. To do so is legalism. – Chuck Swindoll (the Grace Awakening)

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. New Choice42 Video Destroys Argument For Aborting Down Syndrome Babies | Human Defense: https://humandefense.com/new-choice42-video-destroys-argument-for-aborting-down-syndrome-babies/
  2. Doubting Evolution Is like Believing the Earth Is Flat. | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/evidence-against-evolution/doubting-evolution-is-like-believing-the-earth-is-flat/
  3. Apologia Sophia: Apologetics Wisdom 3Preparation Reflections: https://reflectionsbyken.wordpress.com/2019/03/12/apologia-sophia-apologetics-wisdom-3-preparation/
  4. Conversations With Jehovah’s Witnesses – Part Three – Stephen J. Bedard: http://www.stephenjbedard.com/2019/03/18/conversations-with-jehovahs-witnesses-part-three/
  5. Questioning Darwin (HBO Documentary) a Review | Answers in Genesis: https://answersingenesis.org/reviews/tv/questioning-darwin-a-review/
  6. John Lennox Busts a Myth About Religion, Faith and Science | Solas: https://www.solas-cpc.org/john-lennox-busts-a-myth-about-religion-faith-and-science/
  7. The universe of the lone brain (The multiverse escape hatch) – creation.com: https://creation.com/universe-of-the-lone-brain
  8. How Media Consumption Threatens the Future of Christianity (It’s Not What You Think) | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/how-media-consumption-threatens-the-future-of-christianity-its-not-what-you-think/
  9. Animal Rights, Veganism & Abortion (Considering Abortion From The Perspective Of Veganism And Animal Rights): http://rajkumarrichard.blogspot.com/2019/02/animal-rights-veganism-abortion.html
  10. I Kissed Historic Christianity Goodbye this is a podcast with Alisa Childers being interviewed. The Freemind Podcast with Guest Alisa Childers – Alisa Childers: https://www.alisachilders.com/blog/i-kissed-historic-christianity-goodbye-the-freemind-podcast-with-guest-alisa-childers
  11. Is God Real? The Bacterial Flagellum and the Divine Design Inference | Cold Case Christianity: https://coldcasechristianity.com/writings/is-god-real-the-bacterial-flagellum-and-the-divine-design-inference/
  12. Bart Ehrman says that God has a problem. If we have free will in Heaven, what’s to stop us from sinning in the afterlife? And if God takes away free will in Heaven, then why doesn’t he take it away so we stop doing evil now? – Is Jesus Alive?: https://isjesusalive.com/is-there-free-will-in-heaven/
  13. Why do you believe in pseudo-science? – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4T2J4ewUOg&feature=youtu.be

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! 2 Corinthians 9:15

Blessings to you all

mid-week apologetics booster (2-14-2019)

Good morning friends,

Here is a random quote (of over 750) from Nuggets:

Faith is the telegraphic wire which links earth and heaven–on which God’s messages of love fly so fast, that before we call he answers, and while we are yet speaking he hears us. – Charles Spurgeon

To view more of these quotes, visit:

http://www.ps11911.com/nuggets?dest=quotes

Now, here are your weekly links:

  1. If This Is God’s Will, Then Why Am I Struggling? – Defend the Faith Ministry: https://www.defendthefaithministry.com/blog/if-this-is-gods-will-then-why-am-i-struggling
  2. REPORT OF THE CREATION STUDY COMMITTEE (The Presbyterian Church in America) on the history of views in the church of Genesis 1-3: http://pcahistory.org/creation/report.html
  3. 3 Disturbing Cultural Trends Youth Pastors Need to Address: https://stevenkozak.com/2019/01/21/3-disturbing-cultural-trends-youth-pastors-need-to-address/
  4. Leftist fact-checking site denies New York’s new law allows unrestricted abortion until birth | LifeSite: https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/snopes-denies-new-yorks-radical-abortion-law-allows-unrestricted-abortion-u
  5. Is the male reproductive system poorly designed?: https://creation.com/male-reproductive-system
  6. Dig In: Tips On Communicating Christ in a Post-Christian Culture: https://stevenkozak.com/2018/12/07/dig-in-tips-on-communicating-christ-in-a-post-christian-culture/
  7. 4 Reasons Why Christianity is True – Discover the Compelling Evidence: https://notashamedofthegospel.com/apologetics/4-reasons-christianity-true/
  8. 5 People to Look Out For at Bible Study: A Response THINKAPOLOGETICS.COM: https://chab123.wordpress.com/2019/02/10/5-people-to-look-out-for-at-bible-study-a-response-2/
  9. Ehrman’s Misquoting Jesus Misleads Readers from its Inception Christian Apologist: https://christian-apologist.com/2019/02/09/ehrmans-misquoting-jesus-misleads-readers-from-its-inception/
  10. Humanity’s Greatest Problem. Are people on a TRUTH quest or a HAPPINESS quest? The answer to this question may be the key to unlocking HUMANITY’s GREATEST PROBLEM. – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=osmtPBA0pO0
  11. Do Atheists Have Faith? The faith of an atheist is hard to shake. Did you know that atheists live by faith? Not faith in God, obviously, but they do live by faith. Whether its their belief that consciousness and existence cease after death, or their belief that nothing somehow magically created everything, make no mistake: atheists live by faith. Many atheists cling to their faith in science; they claim that science is the only truth, and that everything must be tested in a scientific manner. But the problem is that science is not always reliable. Did you know that scientists once believed that the world was flat and that bleeding was the best way to rid the body of disease? Sometimes science is wrong. The word science simply means knowledge, and guess what? Man’s knowledge isn’t always correct.: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asgF1VD7Exo
  12. The Delusions of Atheists – bethinking.org: https://www.bethinking.org/does-science-disprove-god/the-delusion-of-atheists
  13. Who created God – If a creator God needs to have been made by a creator, that creator would also need a creator who needs a creator like an infinite chain of toppling dominoes, which is an impossibility.: https://creation.com/who-created-god
  14. Atheism and the supernatural – Conservapedia: https://www.conservapedia.com/Atheism_and_the_supernatural
  15. Answering Skeptics Questions – Existence of the Jewish People Today is Objective Evidence That the Bible is True. Why? If anyone wishes to know whether or not the God of the Bible exists, one of the strongest reasons he can examine is the Jewish people. An honest inquiry into this question will provide more than an adequate answer to the truthfulness of the Christian faith.: https://www.josh.org/resources/apologetics/answering-skeptics-detail/
  16. Apathy, Atheism, and the Absurdity of Life Without God: https://crossexamined.org/apathy-atheism-and-the-absurdity-of-life-without-god/
  17. How to Share the Gospel With An Agnostic – Dare 2 Share: https://www.dare2share.org/worldviews/agnostics/
  18. The First Step of Atheism Apologetics in an Age of Postmodernism – Truth is Free: http://truthisfree.org/first-step-atheism-apologetics-postmodernism/
  19. How Oxford and Peter Singer drove me from atheism to Jesus – The Veritas Forum – The Veritas Forum: http://www.veritas.org/oxford-atheism-to-jesus/
  20. 4 Essentials to Communicating Christ to a Post-Christian Culture: https://stevenkozak.com/2018/12/07/dig-in-tips-on-communicating-christ-in-a-post-christian-culture/
  21. 5 Questions to Ask a Non-Believer Adherent Apologetics: https://adherentapologetics.com/2018/12/21/5-questions-to-ask-a-non-believer/
  22. How Should Christians Respond to the Recent Decisions Expanding Abortion Rights? Bernard J. Mauser, Ph.D. EPEC Articles: https://epecarticles.com/2019/02/12/how-should-christians-respond-to-the-recent-decisions-expanding-abortion-rights-bernard-j-mauser-ph-d/
  23. How Is God Fair For Punishing Us For Adams Sin? – YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FR_XM1691hs&feature=youtu.be
  24. Chris Pratt Claps Back at Accusations That His Church Hates Gay People: : https://faithit.com/chris-pratt-claps-back-about-accusations-that-his-church-hates-gay-people-nothing-could-be-further-from-the-truth/
  25. Privileged Species – Dr. Michael Denton: https://youtu.be/VoI2ms5UHWg
  26. The Programming of Life on Earth: https://youtu.be/WPkBEYsG6EQ
  27. The Facts | Programming of Life: https://www.programmingoflife.com/the-facts/

A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers. She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple. Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes. She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate. Proverbs 31:10-31

Blessings to you all