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Sometimes detractors to Christianity object to the idea of God's existence because of the occurrence of "evil" natural disasters like earthquakes and floods, etc. God created a natural world that is good in that it accomplishes certain things. In order for plants to grow and to continue to nourish humans, the crust of the earth must be replenished. Plate tectonics is one thing that accomplishes this. The incidental by-products are things like earthquakes.
If the truth were known, we do not judge disasters based on unprejudiced moral assessment, but rather on what is painful, awkward, or inconvenient for us. We don't ask, "Where is God?" when our pleasure comes at the price of another's pain (e.g., when our adultery destroys a marriage and the lives of the children involved).
Some say Christianity is just a crutch. But let's turn the question on its edge for a moment. Is atheism an emotional crutch, wishful thinking? The ax cuts both ways. Perhaps atheists are rejecting God because they've had a bad relationship with their father. Instead of inventing God, have atheists invented non-God? Have they invented atheism to escape some of the frightening implications of God's existence? Think about it.
Taken at face value, the "Who are you to say?" question challenges one's authority to judge another's conduct. It says, in effect, "What authorizes you to make a rule for others. Are you in charge? Are you the police or the king or something?" This challenge miscasts my position. I don't expect anyone to obey me simply because I say so. I'm appealing to reason, not asserting my authority. Challenging me misses the point. I'm not commanding, but persuading. It's one thing to force beliefs; it's quite another to state those beliefs and appeal for them.
A favorite ploy of professors whose teaching on relativism is challenged in class is to ask, “If you believe in moral absolutes, what are they?” A person might offer that it’s immoral to dock the professor’s pay just because he’s Jewish, or African-American, or a woman, or approves of homosexuals (or whatever your professor’s hot-button happens to be).
Morals are individual, relativists argue, therefore we ought to tolerate others' viewpoints and not pass judgment on their behavior and attitudes. It should be obvious that this attempt commits suicide. It fails through contradiction. There is no tolerance in relativism, because the moral obligation to be tolerant violates the rules.
Acts shows Mark can be dated in the 50s, and the undisputed early dating of other books confirms that the Jesus of the Gospels was not the result of a myth evolving over time. The so-called "search for the historic Jesus" is over one hundred years old. Virtually nothing discovered during that time undermines the Gospel accounts. There is no "new evidence" supporting the idea that the miracle-working Son of God was the result of an evolution of myth over a long period of time. To the contrary, recent discoveries have given more credibilit
When we raise children, we desire them to do good, but we realize they may turn out to be bad. So what do we do? Chain them to their beds or lock them in a closet to insure they stay out of mischief? That would be barbaric, In the same way, God has dignified man by giving him choices. He's gifted him with the privilege of making his own decisions. Man's choice to do good, to live in conformity with God's desires, is only meaningful if there is an alternate choice to do evil. God won't chain man to the bed or lock him in a closet. That would be cruel.
Recently, I opened my talk before a group in Southern California with an observation: There's a difference between ice cream and insulin. When choosing ice cream, you can choose what you like.. When choosing medicine, you must choose what heals. When choosing ice cream you can choose what's true for you. When choosing medicine you must choose what's true.
The skeptic says, “If Jesus would only show Himself to me—if God would just work one dramatic miracle—then I’d believe in Him.” This kind of person overestimates himself. Even miracles can be denied or dismissed. During Jesus’ passion week in Jerusalem, he was called to nearby Bethany because his friend Lazarus was dying. By the time Jesus arrived, Lazarus was gone. In a dramatic scene Jesus called him forth from the tomb alive, still wrapped in burial cloths.