apologetics

Apologetics and Green Eggs and Ham

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I constantly argue that the main opponent against Christianity is not militant atheists (even though they are the loudest) but those who do not care. How do we get those people to care – we put a stone it their shoe as Stand to Reason would put it. In order to do that we need to be alert for a thoughtful conversation/question, to keep asking, and using different approaches – much like the hero in Dr. Seuss’s classic Green Eggs and Ham. To remind us of that strategy below is a parody of that story: (more…)

Repost – Arguing into the Kingdom

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One of the main comments that Christian apologists hear from those inside the church is “You can’t argue people into the Kingdom of Heaven.” This is an issue that has been addressed by Alan Shlemon of Stand to Reason has in this great letter; but another rejoinder on this common phrase is good.

Is this a new argument against apologetics? Of course not! Augustine wrote in “On Christian Doctrine” that pastors should use the rhetorical arts to strengthen and save those around them. He wrote those collections of essays to essentially fight against that same argument in his day.

What does this objection mean? It means that mere words do nothing to change people. If that is what it means it is false. Of course words are very powerful but not overwhelming, they do not compel people to obey. However, stories were used by Jesus to teach and I think it is safe to say that certain parables like the prodigal son have shown people who God is. Jesus also used apologetics in his discourse – see Luke 7:18-23. (more…)

Repost – Arguing into the Kingdom

dollarphotoclub_59587881-300x200

One of the main comments that Christian apologists hear from those inside the church is “You can’t argue people into the Kingdom of Heaven.” This is an issue that has been addressed by Alan Shlemon of Stand to Reason has in this great letter; but another rejoinder on this common phrase is good.

Is this a new argument against apologetics? Of course not! Augustine wrote in “On Christian Doctrine” that pastors should use the rhetorical arts to strengthen and save those around them. He wrote those collections of essays to essentially fight against that same argument in his day.

What does this objection mean? It means that mere words do nothing to change people. If that is what it means it is false. Of course words are very powerful but not overwhelming, they do not compel people to obey. However, stories were used by Jesus to teach and I think it is safe to say that certain parables like the prodigal son have shown people who God is. Jesus also used apologetics in his discourse – see Luke 7:18-23. (more…)

Repost – what it means to be an Apologist

Sometimes in the midst of life and all of its battles and struggles we sometimes forget that an apologist and what they face is not like this (which is more often than not how we are perceived… and sadly sometimes are):

but more like this:

Arguing into the Kingdom

dollarphotoclub_59587881-300x200

One of the main comments that Christian apologists hear from those inside the church is “You can’t argue people into the Kingdom of Heaven.” This is an issue that has been addressed by Alan Shlemon of Stand to Reason has in this great letter; but another rejoinder on this common phrase is good.

Is this a new argument against apologetics? Of course not! Augustine wrote in “On Christian Doctrine” that pastors should use the rhetorical arts to strengthen and save those around them. He wrote those collections of essays to essentially fight against that same argument in his day.

What does this objection mean? It means that mere words do nothing to change people. If that is what it means it is false. Of course words are very powerful but not overwhelming, they do not compel people to obey. However, stories were used by Jesus to teach and I think it is safe to say that certain parables like the prodigal son have shown people who God is. Jesus also used apologetics in his discourse – see Luke 7:18-23. (more…)

The Reliability of Scripture and Party Games

Every once in a while there is a great question that curious students ask. They say something like ‘how can we trust that the Bible matches what was written originally?’ This curiosity may be shaken when they see something like this in a major news publication:

“No television preacher has ever read the Bible. Neither has any evangelical politician. Neither has the pope. Neither have I. And neither have you. At best, we’ve all read a bad translation—a translation of translations of translations of hand-copied copies of copies of copies of copies, and on and on, hundreds of times.  […] Back then, writings from one era could be passed to the next only by copying them by hand. While there were professional scribes whose lives were dedicated to this grueling work, they did not start copying the letters and testaments about Jesus’s time until centuries after they were written. Prior to that, amateurs handled the job.”

Now, this post is not going to directly address what that article says (as there are plenty of places that have done that) but will give a quick exercise on how we can know that the Bible is reliable with a simple party game. (more…)

End of the Month Links: September

Click away good sir, click away

Here are 6 of one or half-dozen of another posts I have found around the web (or are sent to me) that I have found interesting, funny, insightful, or thoughtful:

Grim Tales

Beautiful stories are just as important as moral stories. This is a big reason why I am starting Breathed Through Silver.

Excerpt: “Children need to hear beautiful language if they are to speak and write beautifully. They need to hear stories of love and courage and joy and sorrow so their imaginations are fired and their hearts expanded. They need to hear the language of Rudyard Kipling, the whimsy of A. A. Milne, the sorrow of Oscar Wilde, the mystery of Hans Christian Andersen, the wisdom of E. B. White, the terror of the Brothers Grimm, the wildness of Dr. Suess . . . there is no shortage of magnificent children’s literature.”

The Saga of Biorn

If works based religion met a variable Mormon like afterlife. I am glad Heaven does not work that way! I dare you to watch this and not think about how the ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ movies would deal with Valhalla.

Why Do Refugees Matter Only After The Christians Are Dead?

A very good question!

Excerpt: “Perhaps the news didn’t catch public attention because early on it was mostly Christians being told convert, leave, or die, and it is acceptable to persecute Christians. Christians are the most persecuted religion, although one would hardly learn that truth reading legacy media. When stories of Christian persecution get told, they are questionably dismissed or billed as stories about something else.

J. Budziszewski: Generation disordered

How the current generation is paying the price of not thinking, embracing the sexual revolution, and not thinking about life. As always there is hope, as people are people and not aggregates, yet this is a interesting interview.

Excerpt: “If you read the great books, you can’t avoid questions like whether happiness and pleasure are the same thing, and how marital order and social order are related. I don’t have to bring them up. My students do. Of course the students won’t talk if they think you are calling them immoral. I humbly suggested to one class that my generation had invented the sexual revolution, but I thought theirs was paying the price. ”

Christian Virtue in the Age of Authenticity

Is the big virtue of the Millennial generation a virtue at all? Answer: it depends but if vices can be considered virtues, how then do we live in this generation?

Excerpt: “In a day where people disdain hypocrisy more than any other vice and prize transparency more than any other virtue, you can be as obnoxious as you want to be, fail spectacularly, and sin repeatedly, as long as you never pretend to be any better than you really are. It makes no difference what errors you say, think, or do, if only you are true to yourself. This is life in the Age of Authenticity.”

Five New Board Games You Should Play

I love board games, and I have one of these 5 games (Spector Ops) and am interested in another one (Codenames). In my opinion board games are a good way to unplug from the electronic sirens and connect back to people in a fun way.