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The billboards read: “No God? No Problem. Be Good for Goodness’ Sake,” and “Are You Good without God? Millions Are.” The point was clear: Morality in no way depends on belief in God. And why should it? Atheists can be good, too. New atheist Christopher Hitchens regularly challenged his religious opponents to suggest a single act of goodness they could perform that he, the atheist, could not accomplish with equal success.
The images are sadly familiar. Buildings ripped from their foundations. Corpses mingled with debris. Parents and friends grieving for lost loved ones. Flowers and candles and makeshift memorials. New Orleans, Newtown, New York, Littleton. In one sense tragedies like these will never be old news. And when new disasters inevitably arrive, the question on the lips of so many is an age old query: “Where was God?” One Wrong Answer
I never like the question, “Do you take the Bible literally?” It comes up with some frequency, and it deserves a response. But I think it’s an ambiguous—and, therefore, confusing—question, making it awkward to answer. Clearly, even those of us with a high view of Scripture don’t take everything literally. Jesus is the “door,” but He’s not made of wood. We are the “branches,” but we’re not sprouting leaves.
A Christian’s theology is minimally defined by two miraculous events. The first miracle no one ever saw, because it could not be seen except by God alone. The second miracle only a few saw, but multitudes have experienced. These miracles happened within days of each other in the middle of the Jewish month of Nissan, in the spring of 33 A.D. It was the week of Jesus’ passion. Best Christmas Verse You’ll Never Hear
Does the Bible teach that Christians are to listen for God's voice to guide their decisions? The keynote speaker’s list of spiritual qualifications was not lengthy. There were no references to his academic letters, theological acumen, skill at biblical living, or personal holiness. Instead, he was simply introduced as “a man who hears from God.” It was the ultimate sign of spiritual competency. The implication for the audience was clear. He listens to God; they should listen to him.
It seems like every time I turn around I hear of another prominent Christian thinker or theologian who has embraced Darwinism. It’s deeply disconcerting. In light of the stature of these Evangelical leaders, some people are going to ask, “What do they know that I don’t know? I thought this was a done deal. It’s either Darwin or God.”
Not long ago I read a stunning (and scathing) response in a blog post by a Christian woman who was furious with those taking exception with the “Christian” convictions of a well-known Mormon media personality. “If only you would get on your knees and pray asking God to give you the wisdom and the discernment you need, you would see and know [this Mormon] is the real deal,” she wrote. “But instead you…ridicule him and the Mormon church…[rather than] doing your own research.”
Read part 2 here Civil war battles were tumultuous affairs. The thundering of guns and muskets was not just deafening, it was dangerous, drowning out the one means of group communication: the bugles.
Has God Spoken? Can the Bible Be God's Revelation? Whenever I hear the opening lines of Michael W. Smith’s song, “Ancient Words,” I am always moved: “Holy words long preserved /for our walk in this world. / They resound with God's own heart. / Oh, let the ancient words impart.”
In the last issue of Solid Ground, I raised a question that may have startled some readers. I asked if the current emphasis on “hearing” the voice of God is biblically sound. I say “startled” because for some people this is like asking, “Does Jesus love me?” or “Is God good?” What could be more obvious, biblically?