Posts Tagged ‘defending the faith’

You may be wondering how these two words go together in any way, shape, or form.  First, let me assure you that this blog is not about advocating physical violence and has nothing to do with the items in your gun cabinet.  This site is about answering the call of Nahum 2:1 in our modern era:

He that dasheth in pieces is come up before thy face: keep the munition, watch the way, make thy loins strong, fortify thy power mightily.

Without a doubt, the enemy of our age, Satan, is launching an uprecedented, in-your-face attack upon mankind and the Church of the Living God.  This attack is not one of tanks, machine guns, and surface-to-air artillery, but rather it is one of ideas and philosophies that seek to undermine Biblical Truth and to overthrow the authority of God in the minds of people.  The mind is truly Satan’s battleground of choice in our age, and unlike ever before, strongholds are being raised up by him to hinder the Gospel from reaching the hearts of men.  Consider 2 Corinthians 4:3-4:

3But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

According to these Scriptures, how does Satan prevent people from receiving the Gospel of Jesus Christ?  By blinding their MINDS.  He that controls the mind controls the individual.  A person will not accept in their heart what their mind rejects as false.  Satan knows this, and as the ‘father of lies’, he is very skillful at using deception, lies, and false ideas to lead men away from their Creator and into ultimate destruction.  This has been his agenda since the very beginning. He is the thief that desires to steal, kill, and to destroy that which God loves and will stop at nothing to condemn as many to Hell as he possibly can, by any means that he possibly can.  Fortunately, God has provided us with everything necessary to not only expose Satan’s methods, but to also utterly overcome him.  2 Corinthians 10:4-5 tells us:

4(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

The Word of God is our best and most powerful weapon in this battle.  It is the ‘two-edged’ Sword by which we attack the kingdom of darkness and pull down the strongholds that Satan uses to take and hold his prisoners captive.  Our enemy knows all too well the power of God’s Word and is trying very hard in our day to discredit the Bible as a way of keeping people from accessing its sacred contents and powerful Truth.  As Christians, God and His Word must be our ultimate Authority and the lens through which we view and interpret the world around us.  That is what this blog is about—equipping Christians to rely solely upon the Truth of Scripture in order to expose, dismantle, and overcome the lies of the enemy and to deliver a reasoned defense of the Christian faith to those who oppose the Gospel. It is no longer enough to simply declare what we know to be true, but we must also be able to show WHY it is true. For too long, the mighty spiritual weapons of our Faith have sat neglected and unused.  It’s time to take them up again and to fortify ourselves mightily with the absolute truth of God’s Word, building up the Kingdom of Christ upon the ruins of the kingdom of Satan. After all, if God is for us, who cares who is against us!

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It is important for Christians to understand and note that, when the Bible refers to those who deny the existence of God as ‘fools’ (Psalms 14:1), it is not merely engaging in name calling.  This is the proper term for someone who willfully refuses to acknowledge that which has been so plainly and openly revealed.  Imagine this:

You have agreed to participate in a live formal debate.  After weeks of preparation, the big day arrives and you take your place on stage behind your podium as the auditorium begins to fill with people.  You look to your left and see your opponent behind his podium with a confident look upon his face.  The moderator gives the introduction and then it’s time to start.  Your opponent goes first and begins his opening statement.  His position? That air does not exist (an a-airist?).

Now, what would you say in response to such an obviously absurd position?  Sure, you could produce graphs, charts, tables, and endless other pieces of evidence to show that air does indeed exist (which your opponent may or may not find compelling and which he may even be able to explain away and rebut via his counter arguments), or you could take a decidedly different approach:  You could simply expose the glaring inconsistency of his position by pointing out that, if air did not exist, he could not possibly be doing what he is doing.  You could (and should) draw attention to the fact that, without air, he could not possibly be breathing, and, as a consequence, he also could not be talking since there would be no air in his lungs to create the vibrations in his vocal chords and, therefore, no way to produce the sounds used to form his words.  Not to mention the fact that, if air does not exist, there wouldn’t even be anything to convey the sound waves from his mouth to the ears of his hearers anyway!  In short, his entire ability to breathe and speak (much less to argue) depends completely upon the very thing that he is denying—-air!  He is defeating his own position with every breath he takes and with every word he speaks, since any argument he puts forth AGAINST the existence of air actually turns out to be an argument IN FAVOR OF the existence of air!!

Such is the predicament of the professing atheist.  The Bible teaches that the existence of God is so obvious, that no one has an excuse for denying him (and are, in fact, behaving foolishly if they do so–Romans 1:18-22).  In other words, the evidence is all around us, but there are many who do not wish to accept it, and who will even go to great lengths to deny it.  So what do we do?  I submit that, just as in the example above, we should gently and lovingly expose the inconsistencies of such positions in hopes that the unbeliever will come to see the folly of what they are doing and repent.  For instance, suppose someone puts forth a moral argument against God (e.g. claiming that He is evil, that certain acts in the Bible are immoral, etc.).  Now, we could spend a lot of time and energy providing evidence as to why that is not the case (only to likely have our evidence discarded or dismissed due the presuppositional bias of the unbeliever), or we could simply ask them how they arrive at absolute, objective standards of behavior in a universe without God in the first place.  After all, if God does not exist, there could be no absolute moral Authority and, therefore, no binding standard of behavior by which anyone (least of all, God) SHOULD conduct themselves.  If moral standards are arbitrarily stipulated, then the unbeliever loses any rational foundation for their complaint against God.  In fact, the argument itself reveals the internal inconsistency of their position and, as a result, makes this objection AGAINST God’s existence a valid proof FOR His existence!

Now, let’s suppose the argument comes in the form of a ‘logical’ complaint against God (e.g. the Bible is illogical, Christianity is nonsense, etc.).  Again, much time and energy could be spent providing ample solid evidence to the contrary, only to likely be told “well that doesn’t prove anything.”  Instead of putting God on trial before the unbeliever, the more effective (and Biblical) approach would be to expose the self-defeating nature of such an argument by simply asking how there can exist any objective, universal standard of logic and reasoning in a world without God.  Obviously, if there is no Ultimate Authority, then there can be no absolute standard by which we should think and reason.  Therefore, no thinking or reasoning could ever be said to be ‘incorrect’ or ‘illogical’—just ‘different‘.  This internal inconsistency yet again testifies to the inescapable, self-evident truth of God and that, like the air, one must assume His existence to even begin to argue against it (which makes doing so the very epitome of ‘foolishness’).  To paraphrase Acts 17:28, it truly is IN HIM that we LIVE and MOVE and HAVE OUR BEING!

As Keith, the ex-atheist, so accurately pointed out in #10 of his expose’ here:

https://christianammunition.com/2014/06/25/how-to-be-an-atheist/

The ultimate goal of the atheist is not to remain rational or logical in these types of discussions, but to just keep arguing no matter what—due to the emotional nature of their beef with God.  Such is the tell-tale sign of someone who simply has an ‘ax to grind’ and, as a result, cannot ultimately maintain any meaningful rational standard or logical integrity with regards to their argumentation.  Hence, the folly of the unbeliever is exposed for what it really is–suppression of the Truth.  It has been rightly stated that the professing unbeliever cannot find God for the same reason a criminal cannot find a policeman.

I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.        ~C.S Lewis

(A series of scripted correspondences from a ‘Heavenly helper’ to a Christian Soldier)

[Letter 3]:

Greetings Soldier,

Of course it is no bother to further elaborate on the references to natural and special revelation as mentioned in my first correspondence to you. I am glad that you are interested in learning more about the ways that God has revealed Himself to humankind and I always enjoy talking in detail about them. First, there is natural revelation. This is God’s revelation of Himself through His creation. Consider the universe and all that it contains–the stars, the moon, the sun, planets, oceans, trees, grass, people, clouds, rain, insects, animals, etc. These are all but a reflection of God’s awesome power and His unlimited creative genius. Indeed, that which is made declares the presence of the Maker and the laws that govern His Creation serve as irrefutable proof of His Sovereignty as the Supreme ruler of Heaven and Earth. In fact, it bears repeating that Romans 1:18-20 states that God’s existence is so plainly confirmed via His creation that no one has an excuse for denying Him whatsoever. How’s that for irrefutable, eyewitness testimony!

Though Creation is more than sufficient proof of God’s existence, God hasn’t stopped there. He has also revealed Himself to mankind via special (or, as some like to call it, supernatural) revelation. This includes His revelation of Himself through the Bible, His Spirit, and through Jesus Christ. It is through these means that we find the deeper wellspring of wisdom and insight into who God is (His character and nature), what He expects of mankind with regards to their thinking, behavior, and salvation (as those being made in His image and subject to His Ultimate Authority), and His plan to ultimately restore all things to a state of eternal perfection, order, and peace through His only begotten Son. Through the kindness of the Father in revealing the Truth of Himself to man, natural and special revelation form the basis for all knowledge and truth and, therefore, provide sound testimony of the inescapable reality of a living God who upholds and sustains all things by the power of His might. May this knowledge make you bold in your witness and fill you with all confidence and Holy assurance in the God that has called you according to his Divine purpose. Here to serve,

Your Heavenly ‘Angent’

A few years back, a small, grey haired woman came into my office to conduct a business transaction.  She was probably in her late sixties or early seventies and was very elegant and proper in her speech and mannerisms, possessing a certain old southern charm that you rarely see anymore.  Our meeting started off pleasantly enough–we made small talk as I worked through assisting her with her transaction on my computer.  As we chatted, she made me aware that she was a nationally-known psychic medium and author who had assisted in solving several high profile police and FBI cases in the past (a small medium?).   I wasn’t really sure how to respond to this, and just decided that it would be best to make a very deliberate and concentrated effort on my part to steer our conversation back to the business at hand and to get things wrapped up as quickly as possible (the sooner the better, as far as I was concerned!).  That was not to be, however, as she continued with her biography by informing me that her ‘gift’ of psychic divination was, in fact, a spiritual gift from God and that the Bible confirmed this.  She then proceeded to tell me how that many Christians had ‘shunned’ her because of her ‘abilities’ and declared that most Christians didn’t really know what prayer was all about anyway or how to ‘do it correctly’.  According to her, true prayer was to be done via a state of intense meditation where one’s mind is totally cleared and the ‘holy spirit’ is allowed to flow through them.  I sat flabbergasted as I listened to her tell me, in a no-nonsense way, that the’holy spirit’ is the spirit which dwells in the rocks, trees, water, birds, etc. (pantheism, anyone?) and that we should endeavor to become one with that spirit.  As you can imagine, I had become very alarmed at what I was hearing by this point.  I leaned forward and spoke gently, yet firmly, across my desk to her and said,

Ma’am, I am a born again Christian and, as a Christian, I hold the Bible to be my ultimate authority.

I then proceeded to explain to her that the things she was telling me were not in the Bible.  “Yes, they are.”  She replied.  “No ma’am, they’re not.”  I answered back.  “Yes, they are.”  She said with more firmness this time.  “Where in the Bible are they?” I asked.  A brief pause from her, as she seemed a little surprised by the question.  She answered, “I don’t know but they are in there……y-you just need to look.”  “Ma’am, I have looked,” I said, “and they are most definitely not there.”  What came next was quite astonishing, yet not completely unexpected.  With a tone of defiance in her voice, she said

well, the Bible has been changed a bunch of times since it was written.

Without batting an eye, the same woman who had just been trying to use the Bible to justify herself, was now trying to undermine its credibility when it no longer suited her purpose!  “How do you know that?” I gently asked.  Her countenance seemed to change for a moment as she processed that simple, but direct, question.  It was obvious that she was not used to having her claims against the reliability of the Bible challenged (and didn’t seem to appreciate my having done so, either).  “My friend is a historian who has researched this extensively, and he told me” she responded.  “And how do you know that the information he gathered during his research is accurate?” I inquired.  She seemed at a total loss as she contemplated an answer and, then, very matter of factly, asked that we just get back to finishing up our initial business.  I was more than happy to oblige her request, as the atmosphere in the room had grown somewhat tense by now.

Once we were done, I handed her a few pieces of paperwork and then walked with her to the door of my office, where we cordially said our goodbyes.  As she was leaving, she reached into her purse and produced one of her business cards advertising her psychic services.  She offered the card to me, which I respectfully declined to take.  Boy, did that do it!  All at once, her whole demeanor changed as a fury welled up inside her and that spirit that was in her reared its ugly head and showed its true nature.  In an angry tone, she began to mutter all sorts of unpleasant things about me under her breath (most of which I couldn’t understand—thankfully) and her once elegant, sophisticated movements became erratic and forceful as she threw her purse upon her shoulder and briskly stomped out of my office and into the parking lot, where her tirade continued even as she got into her car and drove away.

I do not recall ever seeing her again since that day (although she did call in to complain about being ‘preached to’ when she came into the office.  The complaint was dismissed, though, once it was brought to light that she had initiated the discussion and was simply asked to justify her specific claims she made against the Bible).  Looking back, this experience serves as a clear reminder to me that, even now,  Christians must remain sober and vigilant, for our adversary, the devil, is still very much on the prowl and seeking whom he may devour via his many lures and manifold deceptions. Truly, the Enemy of our faith wears many disguises–whether masquerading as an angel of light, or even (as in this case) lurking amongst us in the form of a small medium at large.

UPDATE:  I received word not long ago that the woman in this story has since passed away.  I sincerely pray that she repented and came to know the Lord as her Saviour before she died.

I was recently engaged in a very lively debate, regarding the validity of the Christian worldview vs. non-Christian worldviews, over at Debate.org.  Believe it or not, a very simple challenge, put forth to those who hold to worldviews which deny the God of the Bible, turned into a discussion thread of over 800 comments (well above the norm)!  I have included the link to the discussion for anyone who is interested in seeing how non-Christians fared when asked to account for the most basic, fundamental concepts (i.e. logic, truth, knowledge, the foundation of the scientific method, etc.), required for making sense of the world around us, in their worldview.  Warning: it ain’t pretty!

http://www.debate.org/forums/Religion/topic/55783/

NOTE: What you’ll notice in these types of discussions is that those who deny God and the truth of the Bible will always ultimately be reduced to ‘vain and foolish’ reasoning, just like Scripture states (Romans 1:18-22, I Corinthians 1:19-20).  In particular, notice how the unbelievers’ positions are always shown to be based upon nothing more than blind-faith and mere opinion, having no logical foundation whatsoever upon which to rest.  As I always enjoy pointing out, that is the very definition of an irrational (and, therefore, untrue) position.  The more familiar Christians become with these arguments, the easier it is to then (hopefully gently) expose the errors in the unbeliever’s reasoning and to pull down the ‘intellectual strongholds’ that prevent them from considering and, subsequently, receiving the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Remember, no one will receive with their heart what their mind rejects as false, making the mandate of 2 Corinthians 10:5 especially relevant to us today:

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

I welcome your thoughts.

For anyone who’s interested, here are the links to a few recent online discussions/debates I’ve had with professing atheists that you may find informative (WARNING:  A few instances of profanity and rude language from the atheists):

http://amusingnonsense.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/this-is-awkward/#comments

 

http://hessianwithteeth.wordpress.com/2014/06/26/why-christians-need-to-stop-telling-atheists-to-read-the-bible/#comments

 

http://hessianwithteeth.wordpress.com/2014/07/07/why-i-cant-agree-with-the-bible-leviticus-part-2/#comments

 

https://christianammunition.com/2014/06/25/how-to-be-an-atheist/#comments

 

https://christianammunition.com/2014/05/07/questions-for-the-evolutionist/#comments

 

http://agnophilo.wordpress.com/2014/05/24/questions-for-the-evolutionist/#comments