Thursday, February 23, 2017

Video Debate: William Lane Craig vs. Walter Sinnott-Armstrong- Do Suffering and Evil Disprove God?


On a recent podcast, Dr. William Lane Craig interacted with some interview clips from Walter Sinnott-Armstrong's recent appearance on Closer to the Truth with Robert Lawrence Kuhn.  Featured above is a past debate that Dr. Craig participated in with Sinnott-Armstrong.

Enjoy!

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Pt. 4- Four Facts about the Fate of Jesus of Nazareth: Did Jesus Rise From the Dead?

In this series, we have been considering four facts about the fate of Jesus of Nazareth that the majority of NT historians accept. Specifically, we have been looking at the reasons the facts are so widely accepted.

Fact 1: After His crucifixion, Jesus was buried by Joseph of Arimathea in a tomb.

Fact 2: On the Sunday after the crucifixion, Jesus' tomb was found empty by a group of His women followers.

Fact 3: On multiple occasions, and under various circumstances, different individuals and groups saw Jesus alive after His death.

This week, we consider Fact 4: The original disciples suddenly and sincerely came to believe Jesus was risen from the dead, despite having every disposition to the contrary.

As philosopher and theologian William Lane Craig explains, "Consider the situation the disciples faced following Jesus' crucifixion:

1. Their leader was dead and Jewish messianic expectations did not expect a Messiah who, instead of triumphing over Israel's enemies, would be shamefully executed by them as a criminal.

2. According to OT law, Jesus' execution exposed Him as a heretic, a man accursed by God.

3. Jewish beliefs about the afterlife precluded anyone's rising from the dead to glory and immortality before the general resurrection of the dead at the end of the world.

Nevertheless, the original disciples suddenly came to believe so strongly that God had raised Jesus from the dead that they were willing to die for that belief."1

Next week, we will finish out this series by offering Dr. Craig's answer to the question, "What is the best explanation of these four facts?"

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

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Footnote:
1. William Lane Craig, "Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?," The Apologetics Study Bible, p. 1729.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Answering a Prayer Meme

I will confess that I generally detest Christian and atheist memes.  More often than not, they misrepresent the view they are usually ridiculing and only serve to take cheap shots at the opposition.

For example, consider the meme pictured in this post regarding prayer.  It would have the reader believe that it is absurd for the believer to pray because, after all, "God has an unalterable and perfect plan for every person...!"  So it seems to follow that there is no point in praying!  You see how dumb those believers are?

Now, I wouldn't be so shocked at this incredibly shallow shot across the bow if it were not for the generally high amount of confidence I hold in the skeptic's ability to come up with creative solutions to apparent problems.  Think about it.  The skeptical community has given us such creative explanations as the multi-verse, punctuated equilibrium and even panspermia!  But when considering how God could use the prayers of a believer to accomplish His own purposes (or "unalterable plan"), the skeptic apparently loses all ability to come up with a creative solution to the apparent problem.

In truth, this is not a problem at all and with a little bit of critical thinking, this supposed absurdity evaporates.

As theologian and philosopher Norman L. Geisler explains, God has ordained our prayers as a way to accomplish His purposes:

“God is omniscient…and an all knowing Being cannot change His mind. If He does, He is not really all-knowing. Therefore, God cannot change His mind in answer to prayer. When we pray (or have prayed), God not only knew what we were going to pray, but He ordained our prayer as a means of accomplishing His purpose."1

So in the same way God includes us in His plan to reach a lost world, God uses our prayers to accomplish His purposes. God not only supplies the end, but He also ordains the means and in the case of our communication with God, He has ordained our prayers as a way to accomplish His purposes. This means that the prayers of the believer truly do have meaning.

Now, someone could object and say, “But doesn’t that make God dependent upon our prayers?" No. No more than it makes God dependent upon us for the gospel to be shared to the ends of the earth. God has chosen to include us and our prayers in His plan of redemption, but He did not have to.

So, this meme, like so many others, serves to only misrepresent the position of an informed believer and demonstrates the skeptic's unwillingness to consider possible solutions to an apparent theological problem. Perhaps their time would be better well spent making substantive arguments instead of memes. I'm grateful for those who do.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad


Footnote:
1. Norman Geisler, Systematic Theology, Vol. 2, God/Creation.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Book Preview: Darwin's House of Cards by Tom Bethell

About the Author

Tom Bethell is a senior editor of The American Spectator and author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science, The Noblest Triumph: Property and Prosperity Through the Ages, and most recently Questioning Einstein: Is Relativity Necessary? (2009).

About the Book


In this provocative history of contemporary debates over evolution, veteran journalist Tom Bethell depicts Darwin’s theory as a nineteenth-century idea past its prime, propped up by logical fallacies, bogus claims, and empirical evidence that is all but disintegrating under an onslaught of new scientific discoveries. Bethell presents a concise yet wide-ranging tour of the flash points of modern evolutionary theory, investigating controversies over common descent, natural selection, the fossil record, biogeography, information theory, evolutionary psychology, artificial intelligence, and the growing intelligent design movement. Bethell’s account is enriched by his own personal encounters with of some of our era’s leading scientists and thinkers, including Harvard biologists Stephen Jay Gould and Richard Lewontin; British paleontologist Colin Patterson; and renowned philosopher of science Karl Popper.

You can find a video introduction of the book here.

Learn more about the book here.

You can hear the introduction to Darwin's House of Cards read here.

Order your copy here.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Worldview and Apologetics in the News

The goal of this new feature is to share current news articles that directly, or indirectly, deal with apologetics and/or Christianity.

Here at Truthbomb, we believe that the follower of Christ should be informed about current issues affecting the culture so that we can engage those around us intelligently.  We hope this feature helps you do just that!  Enjoy!

CBS Making Sitcom Called ‘Living Biblically’

‘Fifty Shades Darker’ is ‘Reprehensible’

New Dead Sea Scrolls Cave Discovered

Trump’s Supreme Court Pick: Religious Freedom Defender Neil Gorsuch

Trump Vows to Let Churches Engage in Politics

Actor Chris Pratt Reveals the ‘Great Bible Verse’ He Relies on for Strength

100 Evangelical Leaders Sign Ad Denouncing Trump's Refugee Ban

Cosmic Creation Battle May Be Over

Debate: Does God Exist? | William Lane Craig vs Michael Nugent

10 Philosopher Quotes About Love You’ll Never Read In A Valentine

Tim Tebow Hosts Night to Shine, Impacting 75,000 Disabled Young People

'Anti-theist' stabs Christian housemate to death in Germany 'because he hated religion'

Despite my upbringing, I used to be an atheist. Now, like Mark Zuckerberg, I've had a rethink

Idaho pastor recovering after being shot; Jerry Bridges and Gary Smalley die; Dad places ad for husband of his Christian daughter

Teen Vogue’s Pro-Abortion Assault on Underage Girls

Pro-life rallies call for Planned Parenthood defunding

Del Tackett asks in new documentary: ‘Is Genesis History?’

Faith Leaders Who Supported Trump Now Disappointed With His LGBT Agenda

Washington Supreme Court rules against Christian florist in same-sex marriage case

BREAKING: U.S. House votes to overturn Obama’s mandate forcing states to fund Planned Parenthood

Universes that spawn ‘cosmic brains’ should go on the scrapheap

Courage and Godspeed,

Chad

Friday, February 17, 2017

Secular Jew David Berlinski on the Limits of Science

"Has anyone provided a proof of God’s inexistence? Not even close.

Has quantum cosmology explained the emergence of the universe or why it is here? Not even close.

Have the sciences explained why our universe seems to be fine-tuned to allow for the existence of life? Not even close.

Are physicists and biologists willing to believe in anything so long as it is not religious thought? Close enough.

Has rationalism in moral thought provided us with an understanding of what is good, what is right, and what is moral? Not close enough.

Has secularism in the terrible twentieth century been a force for good? Not even close to being close.

Is there a narrow and oppressive orthodoxy of thought and opinion within the sciences? Close enough.

Does anything in the sciences or in their philosophy justify the claim that religious belief is irrational? Not even ballpark.

Is scientific atheism a frivolous exercise in intellectual contempt? Dead on."1

It should be noted, as Berlinski's website states, he "does not dismiss the achievements of western science. The great physical theories, he observes, are among the treasures of the human race. But they do nothing to answer the questions that religion asks, and they fail to offer a coherent description of the cosmos or the methods by which it might be investigated."2

For more from Berlinski on these topics, check out his book The Devil's Delusion.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

1. As quoted here.
2. Ibid.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Article: How to ERASE Logical Fallacies by Kenneth Samples

Philosopher Kenneth Samples contends that "[a]n essential skill to develop...is how to understand, evaluate, and present a logical argument" and I could not agree with him more!

In Samples' latest article, he explains what makes an argument successful, common logical fallacies to watch our for and offers "a logical checklist to follow that will help you avoid or erase the most common and dangerous fallacies" when evaluating or crafting arguments.

The latter is offered in the form of the acronym E-R-A-S-E and is as follows:


E- Premises should solidly Establish the conclusion.

R- Premises should be Relevant to the conclusion.

A- Premises should provide Adequate support for the conclusion.

S- Premises should provide Simple support for the conclusion.

E- Premises that support the conclusion carefully weigh the Equivalence of comparisons.

This is a must read article for anyone who values quality arguments!  You can check it out here.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Pt. 3- Four Facts about the Fate of Jesus of Nazareth: Did Jesus Rise From the Dead?

In this post, we continue to look at four facts concerning the fate of Jesus of Nazareth that are widely accepted by NT historians today.  The facts we have already dealt with include:

Fact 1: After His crucifixion, Jesus was buried by Joseph of Arimathea in a tomb.  See here.

Fact 2: On the Sunday after the crucifixion, Jesus' tomb was found empty by a group of His women followers.  See here.

Fact 3: On multiple occasions, and under various circumstances, different individuals and groups saw Jesus alive after His death.  

William Lane Craig writes, "This fact is almost universally acknowledged among NT scholars for the following reasons:

a) Given its early date as well as Paul's personal acquaintance with the people involved, the list of eyewitnesses to Jesus' resurrection appearances that is quoted by Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:5-8 guarantees that such appearances occurred.

b) The appearance narratives in the Gospels provide multiple, independent attestations of the appearances.1

Atheist New Testament scholar Gerd Ludemann puts it well:

"It may be taken as historically certain that Peter and the disciples had experiences after Jesus' death in which Jesus appeared to them as the risen Christ."2

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

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Footnote:
1. William Lane Craig, "Did Jesus Really Rise from the Dead," The Apologetics Study Bible, p. 1728.
2. Gerd 
L├╝demann, What Really Happened?, p. 80.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Article: "What Does the Bible Say About Falling in Love?" by gotQuestions.org

Originally published here:

To “fall in love” is to become enamored with someone or to begin to feel love for him or her. Falling in love is an expression describing one’s emotional state when the happy feelings of what’s assumed to be love start to grip the soul. The Bible does not speak of falling in love, but it does have much to say about love.

The Bible presents love not as an emotion but as an act of the will. We choose to love; that is, we commit ourselves to act in the best interests of another person. The idea of “falling in love” relies on warm emotions, fuzzy feelings, and (more than likely) surging hormones; the biblical view of love is that love can exist apart from feelings; no hormones are needed to obey the command to “love your neighbor as yourself” (James 2:8).

Of course, nice emotions often accompany love, and we naturally have warm feelings toward someone we’re attracted to. And of course it’s good and proper to have fuzzy feelings and surging hormones when in the company of one’s spouse. But if that’s all there is to “falling in love,” then we’re in trouble. What happens when the fuzzy feelings fall away? What about when the hormones stop surging? Have we fallen “out” of love?

Love should never be seen as dependent on feelings or expediency or romantic attraction. The “falling in love” concept places undue emphasis on the emotional condition of those involved. The wording of the phrase almost makes it sound as if love were an accident: “I can’t help falling in love with you” makes a nice song lyric, but, in real life, we are responsible to control our emotions. Many marriages have been ended (and many foolishly begun) because someone “fell in love” with the wrong person. God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16), no matter how hard someone “fell in love” with another man or woman.

Love is not a state that we stumble into; it’s a commitment that we grow into. Part of the trouble with the idea of “falling in love” is the world’s twisting of what love means. It would often be more accurate to say that those who “fall in love” actually “fall in lust” or “fall into infatuation” or “fall into co-dependency.” Love is a divine gift that we can “eagerly desire”; love is “the most excellent way” (1 Corinthians 12:31). “Love is patient, love is kind” (1 Corinthians 13:4), and we don’t “fall into” patience or kindness. The more we grow into love, the more giving and others-focused we will become (see John 3:16 and 1 John 4:10).

Falling in love is a lovely phrase, and it conjures up enjoyable feelings of having entered an ideal romance. Such feelings are fine, in and of themselves, and it’s possible that those who are falling in love have indeed found a perfect match. But we must always remember that love is more than emotional involvement based on physical attraction. Those who are “falling in love” are sometimes blinded to the reality of their situation and can easily mistake the intensity of their emotions for genuine love. The bride in the Song of Solomon speaks of the permanence of true love as she exhorts her husband: “Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm” (Song of Solomon 8:6). In other words, “Pledge to me all of your emotion (your heart) and all of your strength (your arm).”

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad

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