Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Facts on Christianity: A Quick Examination

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“The Bible encourages people to put their faith in God. Unfortunately, many people equate faith with a blind leap in the dark or wishful thinking. But the faith that the Bible requires is intelligent faith. It is neither blind nor irrational. Biblical faith is a committing trust with an object (God) who is worthy of our faith. No one is asked to sacrifice his intellect when he puts his faith in the God of the Bible.” –Don Stewart,The Ten Wonders of the Bible, 1990, p. 13.

“The Christian faith does not call for us to put our minds on the shelf, to fly in the face of common sense and history, or to make a leap of faith into the dark. The rational person, fully apprised of the evidence, can confidently believe.” –William Lane Craig

Does God exist? The existence of God is not 100% provable. But one does not need absolute evidence. In a court of law, evidence beyond a reasonable doubt is acceptable when considering a verdict. In the same way, when considering a first cause one may view all the evidence and make a reasonable conclusion that God does indeed exist. The Kalam Cosmological argument lays out in clear terms: Anything that has a beginning has a cause. That's certainly true. Second, the universe began to exist. Given the evidence, the red shift observed by Hubble in the early 1900s, that seems quite likely. Since the universe needs a cause, that cause must be immaterial, beyond space and time, and infinitely powerful. In other words: God.

Is the Bible really God’s word? There are a lot of Bible skeptics out there. But there are over 25,000 whole and partial ancient manuscripts of the Bible, and they all match nearly identically. The Bible when compared with recorded history is 99.7% accurate. Archaeology and historical records support the events of the Bible as described in books of the Old & New Testament.

Did Jesus really exist historically? The evidence indicates that yes, Jesus Christ of Nazareth did exist. He was a real person in the history of the Middle East. History is gleaned by manuscript evidence, historical account by witnesses cross referenced with official documents of governments and empires. The manuscript evidence for the historical existence of a man named Jesus Christ of Nazareth is better than for most historical persons.

“Do you believe in the existence of Socrates? Alexander the Great? Julius Caesar? If historicity is established by written records in multiple copies that date originally from near contemporaneous sources, there is far more proof for Christ’s existence than for any of theirs.” –Dinesh D’Souza, What’s So Great About Christianity, p. 296.

But was Jesus Christ really God come to Earth? Now that is the point of real questioning. And if Jesus Christ was really who he claimed to be, did he really rise? Given that Christianity grew from a few scattered followers to 2.1 billion adherents today, it would seem that Christ did rise to life. 11 of his 12 apostles were killed for proclaiming the risen Christ. Would they really be willing to die for a lie? The truth is clear: Jesus is the God-man and he is alive. He reclaimed his life, & he knows you.

What will you do? Will you believe in Christ? Are you willing to follow him? Are you willing to turn your life over to him? I encourage you, the evidence is reasonable, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Call out to Christ, cast all of yourself out to him in prayer! Find a good church to attend. Begin to pray to God, and purchase a good study Bible. Seek help for your hurts, habits, and hangups at organizations like Celebrate Recovery, AA, and NA. Embrace a transformed life, and know that you are not believing blindly, you are believing based on a God who is really real.

Not convinced yet? Keep reading, keep learning, and seek God. He will reveal himself to you through that process.

Further Reading:

  1. Does man need God in Western Civilization: Young People
  2. Real Christianity: Clothing, Buildings, Money, & Extravagance
  3. Spiritual Journey | Dreams, Darkness, False Light, a journey in Ideas
  4. Proverbs Chapter Twelve (Ancient Wisdom for Everyday Life)
  5. Philosophy, Science, Logic, and History: Presentations on Christianity
  6. Five Presentations by Ravi Zacharias on Christian Philosophy
  7. Journey of the Christian through the Forest called Earth
  8. True Christianity vs. the Modern Culture
  9. Recovering Consumer & Self Righteous Intellectual
  10. The Testimony of a Skeptic on the Existence of a Loving God