Sunday, May 31, 2015
As I have mentioned in a couple posts in the past (here and here), it is important that apologists investigate theological questions and details of the Christian worldview. Without such investigation, inconsistency in the worldview that is being defended will easily creep in. Because consistency is a feature of reality, unbelievers will seize the inconsistency as evidence against Christianity as the true worldview. This can have detrimental effects in public places where honest seekers may be listening to and watching conversations. One of the detailed areas of the Christian worldview that must be consistent is God's character (one area of theology). If God's character is found to be inconsistent with what we are defending, then it serves as evidence that we have something wrong (in part or in whole- see the post Is Your View Falsifiable for more on this). Today, I want to focus on God's moral character, specifically His perfect honesty (Numbers 23:19; Titus 1:2; and Hebrews 6:18).
One of the most contentious debates in the Church today focuses on the age of the universe and the length of the days of creation in Genesis 1. One of the most influential arguments against the young-earth creationist position (YEC) is that if nature reveals an ancient age (~13.7 billion years, as the evidence powerfully [and some would say "only"] supports) yet the universe is actually young (6,000-10,000 years) then God has given us a false revelation in His creation; this means that God is ultimately deceiving us and the truth is not found in Him. If a view of God necessitates that He is lying to us, then the god necesstated by that view is NOT the God of the Bible. And if we defend such a view, we are found to be false witnesses of God and the truth is not found in us. This challenge is not one to be taken lightly and it must be addressed.
Monday, May 25, 2015
A couple weeks ago I was browsing a science and theology group on Facebook where someone had asked the question,"I've always been told that OEC (old earth creationism) is a compromising position biblically speaking. Can anyone OEC clarify?" As I've discussed in previous posts, it is important that Christians investigate the whole of their worldview to develop a more accurate understanding of who God is (and what He has done) and to ensure that they are defending what is true when evangelizing and discussing in the public market place of ideas. I am a Christian who believes that the universe is not only 6000 years old (a young-earth creationist position- YEC), but rather I believe that the universe is roughly 13.7 billion years old (an old-earth creationist position- OEC).
Monday, May 18, 2015
Rock Solid (paperback and GoodReads) is Tom Gender's latest addition to the library of books available to those who wish to defend the truth of Christianity. It takes a very straightforward and organized approach of defending six crucial doctrines of Christianity. He has divided the 178 pages accordingly into six chapters and includes an outline of the challenges address in the appendix.
Tom Gender introduces his latest work by explaining the important both both theology and apologetics to the Christian. In doing so, he establishes a necessary connection between the two: if a Christian is defending a false theology, then they are not defending a true worldview, and if a skeptic knows how to demonstrate that theology false, then they have logical reason for rejecting the worldview of the Christian. This can provide no end of doubts and stumbling blocks for unbelievers to come to Christ and Christians to consider rejecting their worldview. Gender emphasizes that apologetics should not be done in the absence of theology. To be effective, both must be practiced together.
Using that as a springboard, Gender's purpose behind this book is to focus on the proper understanding of several of Christianity's most challenged and challenging core doctrines and how to defend their truth biblically, historically, scientifically and philosophically. Each doctrine will contain four parts: an explanation of the doctrine, an expansion upon its details, an engagement with common challenges to the doctrine and its details, and the practical implications of embracing the doctrine.