Sunday, January 24, 2010

Can Man Be Good without God??

I have decided to make a post each Sunday with some discussion on matters of the Christian faith. I am deeply compelled, as a Christian and person who desires to see the truth of God revealed to those who are living under the pretenses of some false reality, to employ whatever means possible to make God known to those who do not have the inexpressible joy of life and relationship with Him. This is why I take such a great interest in the discipline of Christian apologetics. While I do not think that through mere academia or argumentation we can necessarily change the minds of someone who is willfully opposed to truth, but we might perhaps help "clear the bushes" as we defuse their objections and perhaps cause them to consider or reconsider Christ and the ultimate reality He offers.

As you are probably well aware, the world views of atheism and existentialism have been flourishing over the past century or so and have been gaining a lot of steam in the past half century thanks to the movement of postmodernism. These world views have long been in conflict with Biblical Christianity, but most recently the debate has been posed not so much as religion (and specifically Christianity) vs. atheism but as Christianity Vs. science. This is very deceptive as these ideas are not at all in contradiction. In fact, the truth of the claims made by the Christian worldview are only better confirmed so long as science is not employed in a way that is bias against the Bible before the scientific method is employed. This is why the works of men like Richard Dawkins, Victor J. Stenger, and the like have been so popular.

The stigma that Christianity is an outdated myth which science has in some ambiguous time and place disproved, has invaded many of our university campuses and therefore has created a real challenge in terms of the voracity and hold of its indoctrination - not of the categorically ignorant but of those who are of an educated and relatively intelligent background. They would like to think that education or intelligence is what somehow separates the Christian mystic from the atheist (in a nutshell - pride). In reality, it must be admitted that men of great intellectual capacity and education have been on both sides of this argument. The result of this bias, however, in our educational system is being fueled by the common belief that to have no God, and therefore no ultimate accountability, is a liberating thing. Ironically what it has done is lead many into a life of captivity by placing a false limitation on reason and logical thought - a life without any real meaning, truth, or ultimate destiny. The end result is despair, depression, and moral bankruptcy. While claiming to consider all the possibilities, the atheistic worldview and it's various manifestations must contradict it's own basic premise by discounting the very possibility of the divine. Religion, in their mind, is the ultimate evil and the equivalent of superstition.

I am thankful that in the face of such widespread challenges to real absolute truth, morality, and theism, that God continues to make Himself known. Men specially equipped and empowered by the Spirit to deal with these modern critics and answer the difficult questions posed by the secularistic worldview are being raised up and they are of the highest levels of educational background and expertise. I encourage the entire Christian community to be awakened to the reality of such challenges to truth and reality in our culture which face not only the young and vulnerable, but the entire generation. It is our duty to make God's truth known and not to harbor it, like a lamp that gives its light can dispell the darkness, so is the duty of the church.  I think of the words in 1 Peter "But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect..." 

Since I did not have much time on my hands this evening, I decided to simply post links to two lectures dealing with these subjects by two very capable men, one delivered by Dr. William Lane Craig and the other by Dr. Ravi Zacharias.  These lectures speak on the worldview of atheism and it's viability at a very introductory level.
The first lecture is by William Craig and is called Can We Be "Good" without God?  He does a wonderful job of articulating this issue in a way that is easy to follow.

The second lecture is called Why I'm Not an Atheist and was delivered by Ravi Zacharias at the Veritas Forum and deals specifically with the existential question of whether Atheism as a world view is coherent and liveable.  Since this is on YouTube, you'll need to bear with him through the first video or so as he is laying out a foundation.

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