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make Jesus known to others, it's not easy for me. I've sometimes Wilson, Editor sharing your faith. Visit the new AgApé website At: found it hardest talking with friends, but sharing the by the Spirit and pursue conversations with spiritual .. give someone time to explain their worldview. It will often.
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Human beings are special creatures of God, having been made in His image so that they might know and consciously serve Him. Fearing God is also closely associated with loving Him and participating in His plan for His creation Deuteronomy 6: Full and abundant life for human beings is found in accepting our role as creatures and learning to fear, love, and serve our Creator according to His good purposes and will. God has not been silent about how we should conduct ourselves in this life.

The result of this rebellion was the entrance of sin and all its attendant miseries to the human situation. The whole world was affected by the entrance of sin—the fruit of prideful self-seeking—so that ruin, misery, fear, and death became the norm throughout the whole creation. So violent and self-serving did men become that the only law that prevailed among them was the law of power and preference: God did not condone this way of death; instead, He determined to establish a people unto Himself who would begin the task of reconciling the cosmos back to God.

He rescued them from a cruel bondage in a foreign land and gave them His Law as a guide to righteousness and life. By keeping His Law they would know a full and abundant life and be a nation to attract other nations to God and His ways Deuteronomy 4: This is because Jesus of Nazareth was the Word and Son of God incarnate, as He demonstrated by fulfilling all the ancient prophecies, in His words and works, and by His resurrection from the dead.

Those who have been redeemed gladly take up the commandments of God because they know them to outline the way of love for God and love for our neighbors. They see in these commandments—and in all the Word of God—the key to re-establishing much of the original goodness, beauty, and truth of God in the cosmos.

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Now those who have been redeemed have a duty to perform. They are a people with a mission; that mission is to bear the Good News of Jesus to the whole world, and to call people everywhere to repent of their sins, enter the Kingdom of Christ, take up the Word of God, and join Him in the glorious task of making all things new.

Whatever may be our calling in life, we receive our vocation as a gift of God and pursue it with a view to restoring goodness, beauty, and truth to every area of life. Attributes such as personal, omnipotent, and benevolent get tacked on haphazardly after that. I prefer to say that if Something Unknown caused the universe, then that thing is unknown and we are not justified in claiming that we do know about it.

Seems like its just assuming the existence of God so that we can satisfy the answer to an interesting question. You say that it is unsatisfactory. I wonder why that is. It seems that it is at least a reasonable option. I would not argue that this is the only possibility in which one could believe, only that it is a perfectly reasonable option. Let me try to elaborate:. It is not enough to provide God as a hypothesis for the creation of the universe, there needs to be supporting evidence that the hypothesis is true as well.

The Cosmological Argument which is what I was addressing just provides this hypothesis and assumes that because it could be the answer, it therefore is the answer. However, we are not justified to conclude that, in these cases, God, Zeus, and the multiverse exists, simply because they might. It is a leap to go from God is a potential answer to this question, to God is the answer, to therefore God exists as the Cosmological does. I am familiar with the Bible verses that mention God spreading out the heavens. In my opinion, it is a bit of a stretch ha!

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It seems to be referring to God creating the firmament over the earth: I know that there are many verses in the Bible that can be interpreted to support modern scientific discoveries. I find that many of these rely heavily on creative interpretation and cherry-picking. For every verse that can be interpreted to explain some aspect of biology, there is another that suggests that heredity is based on what animals are looking at while mating.

Think of it this way: It was only after we discovered the expansion of the universe through scientific observation that people started applying this new interpretation to the text. But we can make conclusions based on a preponderance of evidence. Other scientists, however, hold that perhaps our universe did not originate from a Big Bang, but rather that the Big Bang is merely a mirage created by the implosion of a 4D black hole.

Either way, scientists are in the business of challenging the theories of their colleagues and testing everything. Out of testing and argumentation comes a better understanding of truth. Many scientists are convinced of the Big Bang based on the preponderance of evidence they see supporting it. Why is it so unreasonable, then, that a Christian would consider the possibility of God as the First Cause, combined with the complexity and wonder of creation, combined with the voices of ancient prophecy, combined with the ontological factor of our nearly universal searching for a divine presence, etc.

What concerns me is the insinuation that since we cannot conclusively say that God was the First Cause of the Big Bang, we therefore are not allowed to conclude that He exists. And most of the Christian apologists I know are fairly sharp as well. There are certainly plenty of intelligent people on both sides of the debate, no argument there.

Of course, since the two sides are arguing opposite points, they cannot both be right. One of the sides, even with its intelligent supporters, is wrong. Hopefully, discussions such as this one can lead to figuring out which side that is. I agree that if there is a preponderance of evidence pointing toward something it makes sense to believe it. The evidence for the Big Bang is a great example of this. However, it is important to distinguish between a hypothesis and the evidence supporting the hypothesis.

The hypothesis is just an idea: The evidence is the observations, measurements, etc. The reason I bring up this distinction is because I was specifically addressing the Cosmological Argument, which seems to muddle up the distinction between hypothesis and evidence. It proposes God as a hypothesis for the origin of the universe, but then tries to use that hypothesis as if it were evidence. But note that it called the Cosmological Argument, not the Cosmological Hypothesis. I cannot see the Cosmological Argument as evidence for God, which is how it is usually presented.

You seemed to realize this as you presented God as a possibility for creation and then offered other arguments for the evidence. You brought up other evidences for God: A preponderance of unconvincing evidence in my opinion, at least does not add up to good evidence. I am sure that you would disagree on the quality of those evidences and I accept that. That is why we have come to different conclusions on the existence of God.

It gives me more faith in the scientist.

Crossing the Worldview Divide: Sharing Christ with Other Faiths

They are merely ours to observe and explore. Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth. For with thee is the fountain of life: Perhaps I should rephrase. My confidence in scientists grow when they discover something that is evidently a part of the way God has either created the universe or unfolded its history, whether or not there is any particular proof text to cite or not.

I realize the church has historically used Scripture inappropriately to support various theories later proven untrue — like that whole flat earth thing. Then start there my friend, what is the scientific proof of god.

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Methodologically this is invalid. Whenever I hear this from theists, I have to sigh because there is no end to the logical refutations of every single one of your arguments which you think support your belief. That is, everything we can see, touch, experience, contemplate, is evidence for their God. Because their God is the only conceivable entity that could have created everything, therefore, their God must exist. You forgot to add at the end: I have engaged in several in-flight discussions with people attempting to share their religious beliefs with me.

The most fruitful one by far began with a cold airplane cabin. The person sitting next to me requested a blanket from a flight attendant. There were none to be had, so I offered them an extra t-shirt I had in my carry-on bag, which they gratefully accepted and used as a makeshift covering. As the flight ended we exchanged contact information and to this day are friends who can freely discuss our differing beliefs while maintaining respect for one another as thinking individuals. Too often either side will begin to argue against what they think the other party thinks without even attempting to ask them first.

I agree with the third point, though I object to the last part of the statement. I find the final part to be condescending, dishonest, and frankly guilty of exactly what Pastor Stier just suggested not to do! Ditto part four, and more dishonesty.

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This is more mental insulation, an attempt at distancing oneself from having to acknowledge that while they believe something to be divinely revealed truth, many others believe it to be superstition. Your own life is the most convincing testimony to the strength of your beliefs, though not necessarily a demonstration of the truth of them. Dishonesty is far and away the easiest means of turning people away from what you believe, because people who sincerely believe in the truth of a notion have no need to be dishonest in making their case.

Our plane was delayed for about 6 hours. It was late at night and folks were getting very impatient some trying to sleep on the floor, etc. The airport was incredibly congested and nobody was having any fun. Some folks decided it was a good time to party and they could be heard at the bar making more and more noise as a number got pretty wasted. Anyway, when we finally boarded the plane, and as I was heading down the aisle, I saw a lady who was white as a ghost, singing incoherently , and vomiting into a bag.

Sure enough I was assigned to sit next to her for a 3 hour flight. I had a decision to make and I decided that if I am the Christian I claim to be, then I will serve her and show love to the best of my ability. That meant that for the next few hours, I was attended to her needs, which meant mainly providing a constant supply of vomit bags and lots of reassurance that she would be OK. It was all I could do not to get sick myself.

I just treated her with kindness and tried to imagine what Christ would do. She was very kind as well and very apologetic. I felt that this was a metaphor for how I should be living every day and how I should be treating everyone. I fall far short all the time! BTW, I got a standing ovation when the plane landed — I was shocked that the whole plane seemed aware of what was happening. That was my point exactly. Thanks for being one of the people who helps make the world a better place to live in.

The first step of asking questions is a good place to start, it is always good to get to know each other. Your step 2 is bogus in the sense of there being a other reason that no proof of deities. Yes many atheist have stories to tell about bad experiences with religion or a lost loved one. So do religious people- so the cause of their atheism is not always related to their personal experiences. Most of the atheist I know have thought deeply about all things supernatural, and have come to their atheism position after studying the question.

Your step 3 is not supported by what you posted. Your point number 4 is most likely wrong for the overwhelming majority of atheist. Myself and most of the atheist I know do not believe in any deities. Your step 5 is a blatantly an appeal to emotion. For if you did you would realize that atheist are more analytical than emotional especially when it concerns the supernatural. Good luck with that though! It would have been helpful, John, if you had checked your presentation for spelling, grammar, and syntax.

It always embarrasses me when a fellow atheist appears to be someone who could benefit from remedial composition. I assure you that I am more intelligent than I type. I attempted to edit it after I posted it but there seems to be glitch when using an iPad.

I hope the gist of what I ment comes though. Just a tangential thought…. Not sure why an ipad means folks cannot check their spelling and sentences. Even a few, when faced with death of a friend, still seem to come away with a longing for something beyond the grave. These are the ones that I get to talk with the most. We love kicking around the longing for eternity, and might that not suggest a God to spend eternity with? You need to stop blogging, because all you are doing is preventing there from being any real communication between atheists and christians.

According to most mainstream Christian doctrines, the people I know and love who have rejected Christianity and are now dead are in Hell, being tortured for eternity. I tell you this now: I am not necessarily averse to the idea of eternal persistence after death, though I have no good reason to believe this actually occurs. I have no desire to spend eternity praising and worshiping the kind of being who would send untold billions of people — some of whom were very dear to me — to be burned forever in a place it built for the purpose.

Could a perfectly Just God allow sin to go unpunished? It seems to me the blame is misplaced.. God desires that they fellowship with Him.. You seem to be viewing this in very black and white terms. The objection that Andy raised was that the Christian god is said to torture people for eternity. You seem to think that the only possible options are to punish sin in this most extreme way with eternal torment, or to let sinners get off with no punishment at all.

A third option could be to make the punishment somewhere in between, proportional to the crime the same way we do in civilized society. Ever notice that not every crime gets the death penalty? Assuming your theology is true, then yes. But providing an easy method of avoiding punishment does not justify the punishment.

All you had to do was sing a silly little song! I think it is wrong to blame someone for a choice that they were incapable of making. For whatever reason, the person misunderstood the cyanide label perhaps they misread it, or did not know what the word meant, or had a reason to doubt that the label was accurate. Would that person be blamed for their death if they unwittingly chose the cyanide? Wow, what a mealy-mouthed justification for one of the most morally bankrupt ideas ever. By way of analogy:. One of your children in particular sometimes plays with matches. You have repeatedly warned them of the dangers of doing so and like any reasonable and loving parent, disciplined them when you caught them in the act of defying you and putting themselves in danger.

What would you do? I love them and would risk my own life to keep them safe! It seems that Mr. I would completely undermine my authority as a parent if I prevented them from experiencing the consequences of their actions. One could even show their children photographs of burn victims to drive the point home. Yes, a perfectly just God could allow sin to go unpunished. After all, sin is nothing more than whatever God wants to be a sin. A perfectly just God would let everyone know what sins actually are in an infallible method, not by informing a few jews and waiting for the information to spread where it has to compete with any other number of religions.

Lewis, and others think Hell is cold. That is to say, in absence of being demonstrably real, people are free to make up pretty well whatever they want about it. Does this mean that these folks just never had any inner longing? People longing for eternal life makes it no more real than kids longing for Santa Claus makes Santa real. The fear of death and the unknown is natural. There has never been a more appealing and interesting preacher than Jesus. Frame the gospel as a love story that just happens to be true.

Greg Stier Greg Stier is a husband, a father, a preacher, an author, a twitchy revolutionary and a fanatic for Jesus. Follow GregStier Posts Twitter. Andrew December 6, at 6: The Irish Atheist December 6, at 7: Cox December 6, at 2: Cox December 6, at 7: Esau Yakub December 3, at 9: Kivahut December 3, at 8: Kun December 3, at 6: Mark Moore December 3, at 3: Tyler King December 3, at 3: Jonas December 3, at 2: Scott Hurst December 3, at Egodram December 3, at JamBar December 3, at Jack Rawlinson December 3, at Hypersapien December 3, at Paul December 3, at 9: Cox December 2, at 9: We want to shake up their worldview, but we have to be able to communicate first.

In the remainder of this article, we will consider the differences with and ways to share the gospel with people from four different worldview perspectives: Islam, Hindu, Mormon, and popular postmodernism. Islam is the second largest religion in the world with about 1. In America, there are over 2. If you live in a metropolitan area, you are probably aware of several mosques in your area. How can I share Christ with my Muslim acquaintances in a way they can understand? To answer this question, we need to understand how their worldview differs from our own and what communication issues may come into play.

Christians believe that a transcendent, loving God created the universe and mankind. Muslims believe that a transcendent, unknowable Allah created the universe and mankind. A Christian believes man is created in the image of God, but mankind is now fallen and separated from God by our sin nature. Muslims believe that, although weak and prone to error, man is basically good and is fully capable of obeying Allah. For a Christian, the answer to our problem is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ who provided a way for us to reunite with God through grace.

Muslims must focus on good works to earn their way into heaven. They have no instruction as to what level of goodness is required. Certainly, they must pay attention to the five pillars of Islam: For a Christian, the world is moving through time, not repeating itself, to reach the end God has prepared for it. For a Muslim time is a linear progression as well and it is moving forward exactly as Allah has willed.

The key difference between our worldviews lies in the way to redemption: How can you share effectively with Muslim friends and acquaintances? First, there are some important issues and confusing terms that will sidetrack your discussion in their minds. Most Muslims will not enter into a conversation if they know the intent of it is to convert them to another faith. Muslims are told that Christians worship three gods when there is only one. This area is especially problematic in thinking that God could be born to a woman and be crucified. An interesting note on this argument for Islam and against Christianity: But first, you need to be able to communicate the gospel to them in a way that they will hear it.

To share with a Muslim, you must begin with prayer for your Muslim acquaintances who are captive to powerful social ties and equally powerful demonic lies. Pray that God will work to prepare their hearts. God has been working in powerful ways preparing Muslims to listen to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Start your conversation with their most important need. God loves us and knows that we cannot do it on our own.

In some Islamic countries, a good way to begin the discussion is to look at what the Koran says about Jesus to draw their attention to the specialness of Jesus. If they show an interest, you move quickly to the Bible as the true source of information on Jesus and eternal life. Hinduism is the third largest religion in the world with about million adherents.

However, there are only about 1. If you live in a major metropolitan area, you have probably seen one or more temples in your area. How does the Hindu worldview compare with a Christian worldview on the four worldview questions introduced earlier? The Hindu believes that the universe is eternal and the concept of an impersonal god is contained in the universe. Hindus believe that our current state is a temporary illusion and our goal is to merge into the Brahman, the god nature of the universe.

For a Christian the answer to our problem is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ who provided a way for us to become reunited with God. This salvation can begin now and will be fully realized in heaven. For a Hindu, the answer to our problem is to live a life in such a way as to merge with Brahman at death. Unfortunately, the vast majority will be reincarnated to suffer again as another living creature. For a Hindu, the universe is eternal and history repeats itself cyclically. As you can see, the worldview of a Hindu varies significantly from that of a Christian on almost every point.

Salvation for a Hindu is to reach a state where they no longer exist. They are integrated into the universal god. Both Hindus and Christians believe that mankind faces the problem of being born into a world full of suffering and hardship.

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For Hindus, there are three paths that could lead one out of this situation into oneness: Being aware of these worldview differences can sensitize us to some of the communication problems in sharing with a Hindu. First, when you share with them that Jesus is the Son of God who came to earth in the flesh, they will probably agree with you wholeheartedly.

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This is exactly the response I received when sharing with a Hindu couple at a Starbucks in an exclusive shopping area. After all, there are many forms of god in the Hindu pantheon. How can I share with a Hindu in a way that helps be clearly explain the gospel in the context of their worldview? I would suggest two important aspects. First, you can begin by asking this question: What if there were only one God who transcended His creation?

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We are not created to be subsumed back into God, but rather we were created in His image to be able to exist with and to worship our Creator. Our Creator does not want us to worship other gods which we have made up to satisfy our desire to understand our world. If you cannot get a Hindu to understand this basic premise, then other things you tell them about the gospel will be misinterpreted because of their existing worldview filter. Second, you can tell them that you agree that the problems of this world can be seen in the pain and suffering of life on this planet.