Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Has the world gone completely crazy? Are churches finally discovering apologetics?

Well, I was floored by the Saddleback Church Apologetics conference speakers and topics. And I thought that the lectures from that conference were great.

But look!

Other churches are also having conferences!

Here is a conference in Alabama coming up in January 2010.

Speakers:

  • Ravi Zacharias
  • Prof. John Lennox
  • Alistair Begg ??? This guy is a PASTOR!!!
  • Larry Taunton
  • Stuart McAllister
  • Harry Reeder
  • Jay Smith
  • Bill Wortman

Alistair Begg??? Alistair Begg??? Pastors hate apologetics, except for Kreitsauce! This is unpossible! Unpossible, I say!

And here is another one in North Carolina in November 2009.

Speakers:

  • Michael Brown
  • William Lane Craig
  • Dinesh D’Souza (Catholic)
  • Gary R. Habermas
  • Christopher Hitchens (debating Dinesh D’souza) ??? Christians debate?
  • Johnny Hunt, President of Southern Baptist Convention ???
  • Greg Koukl
  • Peter Kreeft (Catholic)
  • Mike Licona
  • Frank Turek
  • Benjamin Wiker (Catholic)

Now I ask you. When did Christians suddenly start to value apologetics as part of the church experience? And DEBATES! In CHURCH! What is the world coming to when Christians let atheists debate Christian truth claims with reference to real facts and evidences, in the church? Churches are for singing and having fun! Right?

Even the Canadians are doing it!

Worser and worser

But it gets even WORSE. Look, 100 Huntley Street is hosting videos of William Lane Craig answering QUESTIONS! (H/T Apologetics 315)

Look:

• The Relationship Between Faith and Reason – Video / MP3
• The Best Argument for Belief in God – Video / MP3
• Can We Be Good Without God? – Video / MP3
• Is God a Logical Necessity – Video / MP3
• Can We Trust the Bible Written 2000 Years Ago – Video / MP3
Why Is Richard Dawkins So Popular?Video / MP3
• Who Designed the Designer? A Response to Dawkins – Video / MP3
The Flying Spaghetti Monster & Evidence for GodVideo / MP3
• Can We Trust Religious Experiences? – Video / MP3
• Can There Be Meaning Without God? – Video / MP3
• How Can Christianity Be the Only One True Religion? – Video / MP3

HE’S TALKING ABOUT THE BIG BANG! Appealing to the findings of mainstream science! That’s… blasphemy! Isn’t it?

(By the way, you should really listen to these, especially the ones in italics, where he is surprisingly snarky! These are just a few minutes long, each).

Disclaimer

Now whenever I am being silly, no one realizes it. So this is all just me being silly. I love Christian apologetics, and I am happy that churches are getting interested in training young people to think about their faith and then talk about it in public. Once in a while, I should be allowed to be silly.

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20 Responses

  1. Drew says:

    Do you actually believe in the Big Bang, and evolution, and all that? I can maybe understand accepting theistic evolution just for the sake of argument. (Likewise, I’ve even seen Craig accept annihilationism just for the sake of argument.) But to go beyond that seems unwise.

    Also, letting unbelievers preach their views (during debate) inside a church seems a little sketchy. At the very least, you’d need to make sure that the Christian debater was really solid, to prevent any new Christians from losing heart if the atheist did a good job.

    • Wow, this is interesting. The big bang is the current best theory on the evidence, but what makes you think that evolution has anything to do with the big bang? I am quite confident about the science supporting the Big Bang theory, but I can’t think of any evidence for macro-evolution, and much evidence against it. I am extremely opposed to evolution. But the big bang is probably the strongest argument for a Creator that we have. If you couple that argument with the fine-tuning argument, you have a Creator and Designer. All from the Big Bang. Does that help?

      Here:
      The Kalam Cosmological Argument
      The Fine-Tuning Argument

      Regarding the debates, I like to invite atheists into the church and let the chips fall where they may. The best debate I’ve seen is Walter Sinott-Armstrong vs William Lane Craig on the Problem of Evil and Suffering. It was held in front of a packed crowd at Eden Prairie Church in MN. It was awesome, and what made it awesome was that the atheist was so good. Craig still beat him up, mind you, but the atheist did not roll over. In fact, they later published a book with OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS in 2003 called “God?: A Debate between a Christian and an Atheist” in Oxford’s prestigious Point-Counterpoint series.

      One other thing. Craig is NO FRIEND OF EVOLUTION. He is going to be debating that very topic against the arch-evolutionist Francisco Ayala in a huge debate at Indiana University in November 2009.

  2. Mark says:

    I disagree that the big bang is a good argument for the Christian God since it can not be harmonized with Biblical Creation.

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/wow/does-the-big-bang-fit

    http://occ.edu/Chapel/Archives/2007/Mortenson_Terry_2007F_02.mp3

    The only Big Bang Theory I subscribe to is the comedy on CBS.

    • K1) What do you think the purpose of the kalam cosmological argument is?
      K2) Who is the intended audience for the KCA?

      AND:

      Y1) What do you think the purpose of the young earth creationism is?
      Y2) Who is the intended audience for young earth creationism?

  3. James says:

    I could easily recommend a book by Francis Schaeffer towards this discussion:

    Genesis in Space and Time; The Flow of Biblical History (Bible Commentary for Layman)

    In it, he answers the question, “What is the least that the genesis account can mean, and still be cohesive with the rest of the bible?” I think often, people put too much emphasis on the importance of their own take, without due consideration.

  4. Mark says:

    K1) It’s a philisophical argument using uniformitarian assumptions. I think I’d use Gitt’s information argument ahead of this one.
    K2) I suppose you’d have to ask William Craig. I’ve never used it myself since I don’t find it convincing. It essentially involves putting stronger arguements in order to pretend to stand on non-existent neutral ground. In reality it requires the opponent’s presuppositions to be assumed.

    AND:

    Y1) To show the existence of the self-revealed Creator, show the Bible explains scientific facts better than secular interpretations, and refute old-earth biblical compromise. To show that concepts as basic as logic and morality have no basis outside of a Biblical worldview.
    Y2) Anyone who either does not believe in God on the Christian worldview. In my experience, people are much more likely to come to Christ through young-earth creation ministries than intelligent design.

    • K1) The kalam argument uses mainstream science to prove the existence of a creator. The big bang is also fine-tuned, which proves that the creator is also an intelligent designer. This is using mainstream science.
      K2) William Lane Craig debates with the best non-christian scholars at the top universities like Harvard, Columbia, Oxford, Cambridge and McGill, as well as in communist and muslim universities. He doesn’t usually speak in churches. He also publishes in top academic presses like Oxford University Press.

      Y1) The objective of YEC is to make Christians accept the inerrancy of the bible. It has no application to the non-Christian world.
      Y2) The primary audience of YEC is Christians in churches. Almost no YEC speakers debate YEC at major universities. YEC arguments are published by Christian publishers and sold in Christian book stores.

      It’s a question of whether your purpose is to build bigger walls between us and them, or whether your purpose is to persuade them to accept the existence of God. (Craig also is an expert on the resurrection of Jesus)

      • Mark says:

        “The objective of YEC is to make Christians accept the inerrancy of the bible. It has no application to the non-Christian world.”

        We’ll just have to disagree then, because as I’ve said, creation ministy has a huge response of those coming to Christ. What good is a ministry that creates non-biblical theists?

      • Mark says:

        “It’s a question of whether your purpose is to build bigger walls between us and them, or whether your purpose is to persuade them to accept the existence of God. ”

        So your claim is that convincing people God is the Creator is the goal at any cost, regardless of whether the arguments are true and biblical or not?

        • No, no. The goal is to convince people using true arguments that the Creator and Designer is real and created the universe out of nothing. Then we move on to other arguments, like the origin of life, the sudden origin of body plans in the fossil record (by special creation in my view) and to other things, including the bodily resurrection of Jesus from the dead.

          Not expecting you to AGREE, just explaining that for me the main issue is that God is real and Jesus’ death is atonement for sin, the sole means of salvation for all people. Although I am an inerrantist, I prefer a gradual approach when dealing with non-Christians. I like to start with easy stuff, then work up to the hard stuff like inerrancy.

          • MC says:

            Of course this ignores the fact that a large proportion of the unbelieving public grew up in church and walked away because they were taught the alleged unreliability of the Bible on the issues of origins, Creation, and Noah’s flood, as was documented in the wide-reaching research project by Britt Beam.

            My point is that you’re accepting secular intepretations for the time being so that you can reject them later.

            “the main issue is that God is real and Jesus’ death is atonement for sin”

            And how can you do that with a Bible that isn’t trustworthy?

          • Do you have any evidence for the assertion that you made, which I have heard before from Ken Ham? Who is Britt Beam? Can I have a link?

            Do you think that I think that the Bible is unreliable? Who told you that? Do old-earth people tell you that the Bible is unreliable, or is that something someone else told you?

          • Looks like a reliable man, but do you have a link to the study itself?

          • I just listened to a whole podcast on this book and the findings are basically accurate. But I disagree with Ham’s conclusions which echo your conclusions. So the data is good, the conclusions are where we disagree.

            Here’s the podcast for anyone interested in Ham’s data, which I think is accurate.

            By the way, did you see that Bill is debating against evolution against an evolutionist with 650 published papers in November? It’s going down at Indiana University. Should get a few thousand students. I think the lesson to be learned here is that strong belief in the big bang = strong belief AGAINST evolution. Enough to be willing to debate against it. And this is the same for Discovery guys like Stephen Meyer, William Dembski, etc. The ones who go to the mat against evolution all hold to an old universe that came into being out of nothing from a supernatural cause. That is what the big bang theory requires – creation out of nothing by an agent outside of time, space, matter and energy.

            Sorry if I am being mean, but it is something you should look into! I would not read ONLY Ken Ham.

  5. matthew says:

    That wasn’t just silly, it was school-girl-silly.

  6. [...] WINTRY WONDERS– Has the world gone completely crazy? Are churches finally discovering apologetics? …. [...]

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