Skeptics say “You’re only a Christian because you grew up in America. If you were born in Iran, you’d be a Muslim.” While this is wrong, it should make us think.

“How thoughtful of God to arrange matters so that, wherever you happen to be born, your local religion turns out to be the true one.” Richard Dawkins How are you so sure your faith is the right one? Isn’t religion only a reflection of culture? Some might say that you’re just a Christian as an accident of birth. If you were born in Thailand, you’d be a Buddhist!  If you’ve noticed, Atheists and other skeptics of religion bring this up a lot. As if the same type of reasoning doesn’t apply to them. What’s sauce for the goose… Think about it for a second. In the West, Christianity is predominant. But not completely so. Not … Read more

Atheists like Sam Harris say that the Bible advocates chattel slavery. To say that’s an uncharitable reading is an understatement.

Is the Bible pro-slavery? “If God loves us and wanted to guide us with a book of morality, it’s very strange to have given us a book that supports slavery.”  Anti-religious atheists like Sam Harris love making statements like these. They do carry a lot of rhetorical force. And they do seem to throw the character of the God of the Bible in question. Is the “Good Book” not so good after all?   When modern people think slavery, our minds go to pre-Civil war times in America. We’ve all heard the horror stories of the horrible chattel slavery in the South. And the sad reality of it is, there were clergymen who condoned and even promoted … Read more

If believing in Jesus is such a huge deal, why doesn’t he do whatever it takes to show himself to me?

Back in New Testament times, Jesus supposedly worked miracles. He healed the sick. He raised the dead. He has even resurrected himself. He said he did these things so we might believe. (John 14:10-11) Shouldn’t he do the same for me if it’s so important that I’m persuaded? Have you ever heard questions like these? Philosophers and theologians have a fancy term for this. It’s called the problem of divine hiddenness. The problem goes something like this: If there’s a God, he knows everything. He has all power. And he is all good – meaning he loves everyone. If that’s true, he’d know what it would take to convince me. He’d have the power to … Read more

Are you defining faith the same way Richard Dawkins does or the way Jesus does?

There’s this really annoying thing that I see many atheists do. Not to overgeneralize, but I’ve heard it far too often. And it’s that they will persist in defining faith as belief without evidence. Here are some notable examples: “Faith is pretending to know what you don’t know” – Peter Boghossian “Faith is belief without evidence and reason; coincidentally that’s also the definition of delusion.” — Richard Dawkins “Faith is generally nothing more than the permission religious people give one another to believe things strongly without evidence.” – Sam Harris   There’s also this thing annoying thing I see Christians do. And it’s that they’ll basically agree with the atheist. The famous reformer Martin Luther … Read more

There’s one terrible reason to believe the gospels were written late, and there are 7 historical reasons to believe that they were written early

Here’s a question that’s raised by skeptics from time to time. Why were the gospels written a generation after Jesus died? I mean, it’s only the “Greatest Story Ever Told.” Why did it take them so long to write this thing down if it was so important? One terrible reason to believe the gospels were written late: The consensus of critics tells us that the first gospel was written around 70 AD. The other three followed within the next 5 to 20 years. But where does this consensus come from? I’ll be straight up here. This dating comes from historians who rule out the supernatural. You see, Jesus had a lot to say about the … Read more

Jesus Never Explicitly Said, “I’m God”. Did He Really Need To?

“Ahem! Excuse me! May I have your attention, please! I just thought it would be important for you all to know that I’m God. You should probably start worshipping me now since I’m the one who is sustaining your every breath.” — Things Jesus Never said. Recently I was talking to a Muslim. His hang-up was that Jesus never explicitly said: “I am God”. Since he never said that, why did Christians come to believe that he was God? I’m sure you’ve heard something like this before. Jesus Never Explicitly Said I’m God It’s true to say that Jesus never said the words “I am God”. But does someone have to come out and say … Read more

Preach the Gospel at All Times, and Words are Absolutely Necessary

“Preach at all times. Use words if necessary.” You probably have heard this quote before if you’ve been in churches any length of time. It’s been attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, but there’s some dispute about whether or not he actually said it. I remember hearing it for the first time and thinking a couple of different things: 1. “Wow! How I live in the world really matters. I need to live a life of integrity and love in the world.” 2. “Whew! What a relief! I’m already pretty introverted, so now I’m excused from evangelism. If I’m a good enough person, some people will eventually ask me what makes me so different” Guess … Read more

The Christian and the Euthyphro Dilemma

One of the arguments raised against God being the basis for morality is the age-old Euthyphro Dilemma. Socrates, in Plato’s dialogue, asks Euthyphro: “Is the pious loved by the gods because it is pious, or is it pious because it is loved by the gods?” The modern adaptation raised against theism goes something like this: “Is what is morally good commanded by God because it is morally good, or is it morally good because it is commanded by God?” The Catch-22 for the theist is this: God could command any arbitrary thing that popped into his head – like killing kittens – and we’d be obligated to obey and call it good because God says … Read more