God's Existence, Science and Faith, Suffering and Evil, Jesus' Resurrection, and Book Reviews

šŸ’¬ Favorite Quotes: Cold Case Christianity šŸ•µ

This is a collection of some of my favorite quotes from the book Cold Case Christianity by author J. Warner Wallace of ColdCaseChristianity.com. My review of the book may be found here. For more resources from Wallace and information about the book, check out ColdCaseChristianity.com.

General Apologetics (Christian Case-Making)

"In a culture where image is more important than information, style more important than substance it is not enough to possess the truth. Case makers must also master the media."

"All of us ought to be willing to argue the merits of our case without resorting to tactics unbecoming of our worldviews."

"While we are often willing to spend time reading the Bible, praying, or participating in church programs and services, few of us recognize the importance of becoming good Christian case makers."

"We need to master the facts and evidences that support the claims of Christianity and anticipate the tactics of those who oppose us. This kind of preparation is a form of worship. When we devote ourselves to this rational preparation and study, we are worshiping God with our mind, the very thing He has called us to do (Matt. 22:37)."

Is Animal Death Really Evil?

Introduction
Within Christian circles a large debate is taking place regarding the age of the earth. One of the contentions that young-earth creationists (YECs) promote is that millions of years of animal suffering and death before sin entered the world (The Fall) is incompatible with Christianity because animal death is evil and not compatible with God's declaration that the creation was "very good.". A while back I wrote a post explaining that too often man anthropomorphizes animals, and that is the source of our belief that all suffering of animals is evil. In that post I explain that what could ground the idea that the animals suffering (over millions of years before man came on the scene) was evil was if animals were moral beings (via being created in the Image of God). Since they are not moral beings, they cannot commit moral (evil) acts. Since they cannot commit morally evil acts, suffering of the animals as the result of other animals was and is not morally evil.

However, that is only part of the story. I did not speak much on natural evil or man's treatment of animals as moral or natural evil. Recently a commenter asked that I speak to these issues to help further show logical compatibility of my old-earth creation (OEC) view, with biblical Christianity.

Book Review: Doubting

Doubting by Alister McGrath

Introduction

It is often understood that defending the faith is not just for the sake of evangelism, but it is also useful to strengthen the Christian's faith during the tough times of life. These tough times often cause doubt. But this reviewer has found that simply giving a logical answer is not always the way to help someone with doubt. The book Doubting: Growing Through The Uncertainties of Faith by Alister McGrath was recommended as a good resource on dealing with the other aspects of doubt that this reviewer was looking to be able to address. It is a shorter book at only 151 pages divided into eleven chapters. This review will provide a short chapter-by-chapter summary to introduce the reader to the content, then it will conclude with the reviewer's thoughts.


Chapter 1: Doubt: What It Is - And What It Isn't

McGrath begins by clearing up a common misconception about doubt: that it is synonymous with skepticism (disbelief of everything) and unbelief (not believing in God); rather it is distinct. Doubt is composed of two interacting characteristics of humanity. Man is sinful; which causes him to want to distance himself from God; and man is not omniscient, which appears to give him a valid reason to realize that sinful desire. Since Christians will struggle with sin until death or the return of Christ, the Christian life will be a constant struggle with doubt. However, that doubt should not be seen as something to be feared (because it is sourced in sin), but an opportunity to learn more about our Savior and Creator (because it is sourced in a lack of knowledge) that will bring us into a closer relationship to Him.

Ken Ham vs. Bill Nye: The Aftermath

Debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham

Ken Ham vs. Bill Nye Debate- Introduction

Tonight Bill Nye and Ken Ham squared off on the topic "Is Creation a Viable Model for Origins In The Scientific Era?" Promoters of this debate have been promoting it as the "Debate of the Decade" and I had even heard the term "Scopes 2." Because I am a Christian and I disagree with Ken Ham's position on the age of the universe (I agree with Bill Nye, in that regard, but disagree with his worldview in general), it seems that I would be rooting for both or neither in the debate. Since I find that holding an incorrect view of reality (even within the confines of the correct general worldview) is damaging to defenses of the general worldview, I decided to watch this debate and offer my thoughts.

First, I want to state that I found that both participants were very respectful of one another so, it made the exchange easy to watch in that respect. What makes a debate more difficult to watch depends on the participants' ability to stay on topic and defend their contentions against critique. While I think that for the most part, they did stay on topic, there was a mix regarding their defense of particular parts of their contentions.

Should Christians Accept Secular Critique?

Introduction
As humans we tend to prefer to listen to those who agree with us and avoid the discomfort of having our views challenged.We find this in all sorts of people who hold all sorts of different views- be they religious, philosophical, political, or whatever. As a child my most common exposure to this attitude was from those in the church. I remember one person pointing to scripture to affirm such an attitude:
Now we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who comes from God, so that we may understand what has been freely given to us by God. We also speak these things, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual things to spiritual...The spiritual person can evaluate everything, yet he himself cannot be evaluated by anyone." 1 Corinthians 2:12-15 (HCSB)
It was offered that the wisdom of unsaved people is useless to me, and the wisdom that I offer them is foolish to them. I was led to believe that anytime an unbeliever challenged my view, that scripture encouraged me to completely disregard it and anything else the person had to say. After all, even a challenge that seemed genuine or logical was really to trick me into rejecting God: that is the agenda of the Enemy- the "Father of all lies." Even the consideration that something I believed might be wrong was a cause for alarm.