Was Jesus Being Racist and Harsh When He Told the Woman at the Well That the Samaritans Didn’t Know Who They Worshiped?

There are some wonderful spiritual lessons in John’s story about the Woman at the Well. We learn that salvation comes to those who recognize their spiritual thirst. We discover that Jesus is the source of this salvation and that only he can answer our spiritual needs. And it doesn’t matter if we’ve marred our own lives with sin, Jesus is willing to accept anyone.  But some might complain that Jesus’ words to the Samaritan woman were too harsh. They smack with religious and racial superiority. Here are the passages in question:  “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where … Read more

How I Got Into Apologetics (And How You Can Too!)

I am often asked, “how did you get into apologetics?” For some believers, they’ll get interested in apologetics because of a crisis of faith. They’ll have intellectual hurdles that come up that they have to overcome. For me, I never was plagued with doubts. While I spent several years of my life as an atheist, I had a powerful encounter with the Holy Spirit. As I walked with God, the inner witness of the Holy Spirit was a real and regular experience. After coming to faith, I felt burdened to share my faith. I would share my testimony with anyone who would give me the time of day and led several of my friends to … Read more

John Douglas’ Criterion: A Common Sense Guide for Judging Historical Miracle Claims For People Who Want to Avoid Being Totally Closed-Minded

Christian doctrine is predicated on Jesus’ miracles. This is especially true concerning the resurrection. But don’t other religions make miracle claims too? With so many miracle claims in so many other faiths, how can anyone use miracles as evidence for a particular religion? This was one of the famous 18th-century Scottish philosopher David Hume’s favorite arguments against Christianity. His essay Of Miracles is still considered by many to be the death-knell to anyone who would try and argue for signs and wonders as an evidential basis for their faith. Hume wrote: “…that there is no testimony for any, even those which have not been expressly detected, that is not opposed by an infinite number of … Read more

No, David Hume’s Treatise Against Miracles is Not Knock-down Argument

The apostle Paul said that Christianity stands or falls on the claim that Jesus rose from the dead. (1 Corinthians 15:14) Yet for many religious skeptics, any argument made for a miracle is a project doomed from the start. It simply cannot get off the ground. Why is that the case? Enter the famous Scottish philosopher David Hume. In 1748 Hume wrote a short essay called Of Miracles. Hume vigorously argued that one can ever rationally believe a miracle claim because there is always more evidence that one did not occur. Michael Shermer has gone so far to say that “I think his treatise against miracles is pretty much a knockdown argument. Everything else is … Read more

Do the 3 accounts of Paul’s conversion in Luke contradict each other?

There are three accounts of Paul’s conversion to Christianity found in the Book of Acts. They’re all a little bit different, and because of that some critics have cried foul. Comparing the accounts, biblical scholar and skeptic Bart Ehrman writes: “the three accounts differ in numerous contradictory details…Clearly we are dealing with a narrative that has been molded for literary reasons, not with some kind of disinterested historical report.” Ouch. If Luke is a sloppy historian simply spinning some religious yarn then there’s a problem. If he can’t seem to keep from contradicting himself while telling and re-telling Paul’s conversion, this would cast doubt that he ever traveled with or even knew Paul very well at … Read more

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