There are no neutral premises or facts that the apologist may appeal to in formulating an argument. In Making a Case for the Bible, John MacArthur shows you that God’s truth hasn’t changed. Evangelical apologists who follow the evidential method include Gary Habermas, John W. Montgomery, and Josh McDowell. John Frame puts the matter this way: "We should present the biblical God not merely as the conclusion to an argument but as the one who makes argument possible" (Five Views on Apologetics, 220). Making the Case for Jesus (studies in John) by David Banning. This implies as well that one cannot appeal to alleged miracles to prove God’s existence. Well, not entirely. But, according to advocates of cumulative-case apologetics, the case for Christianity is not best presented as a formal proof. After I finished it, I felt inspired, I stopped, and I looked up at the stars again. Steven B. Cowan is the associate director of the Apologetics Resource Center (www.apologeticsresctr.org) in Birmingham, Alabama. This approach has much in common with the classical method. She argues that ancient explanations of reality were understood by those who created them to be mythological. The premises of any argument that the Christian apologist presents necessarily presuppose the truth of the Christian worldview. He is the editor of the book Five Views on Apologetics (Zondervan). For the Reformed epistemologist, the focus tends to be on negative apologetics, simply responding to challenges to one’s Christian belief as they are encountered. And may lightning not strike us by beginning with Richard Dawkins, mobbed by fans at an atheist convention. The universe is full of matter, but what’s out there? It is sometimes argued that the order of the two steps in classical apologetics is essential: Before one can discuss historical evidences meaningfully, one has to have established God's existence. Moreover, through the “internal witness of the Holy Spirit,” a person may be prompted rightfully to accept the specific truths of Christianity without the aid of apologetic arguments. Read 65 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. It was followed by many … God? His thirty books on the history and sociology of religion include The Rise of Christianity, Cities of God, For the Glory of God, Discovering God, and The Victory of Reason: How Christianity Led to Freedom, Capitalism, and Western Success.Stark received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. In any case, the Evangelical community has a rich and varied tradition of apologetics that provides multiple ways in which the faith once-for-all-delivered to the saints may be defended. Steven B. Cowan, Zondervan, 316–7). What is the right or best method for giving a reason for the hope that we have in Christ? Intelligent design, anyone? We differ, that is, over the question of apologetic methodology. $3.99; $3.99; Publisher Description. This method has a long pedigree, hence the name. It tends to focus chiefly on accumulating various historical and other empirical data for the truth of Christianity. (Classical apologists usually claim the support of Aquinas because many aspects of his apologetic method — not least of which is his use of natural theology — seem to fit the classical approach. In 1966 Time magazine ran a cover story asking: Is God Dead? The data that the cumulative-case advocate seeks to explain include the existence and nature of the cosmos, the reality of religious experience, the objectivity of morality, the existence of consciousness, certain other historical facts such as the Resurrection of Jesus, etc. Lee Patrick Strobel (born January 25, 1952) is an American Christian author and a former investigative journalist. MAKING THE CASE FOR GOD... made with Faithlife Proclaim. It is argued that the Christian worldview best accounts for the data of experience in light of these criteria, and thus it is the worldview most likely to be true. Evangelicals differ over the answers to these questions. The two methods in this school of thought are less optimistic than the evidentialist school about the ability of human reason to prove the truth of Christianity to unbelievers. Muslim Debate Initiative 2,184 views 1:13:18 View Wishlist Cart. Here is an outline of the five major methods that Evangelicals have developed for making the case that Christianity is true. It is an informal argument that pieces together several lines or types of data into a hypothesis or theory that comprehensively explains that data and does so better than any alternative hypothesis. But how are we to defend the faith? To answer this question, the cumulative-case apologist will appeal to certain rational criteria such as logical consistency, empirical fit, comprehensiveness, simplicity, etc. For evidentialists, miracles do not presuppose God's existence but serve as evidence for God and for the whole Christian worldview. Reformed epistemology is essentially a reaction against Enlightenment rationalism. As he phrases it: Learning what Jesus claimed about himself (primarily from the book of John), and the evidence to support those claims. 4:4). Instead, the case is more like the brief that a lawyer makes in a court of law or that a literary critic makes for a particular interpretation of a book. Our earthly and eternal happiness depends on following our vocation without faltering. The evidentialist methods assume that unbelievers and believers share common rational principles (logic, rules of evidence, etc.) Making Your Case for Christ is designed to help Christians, both young and old, understand and articulate the message of Christ along with evidence that backs up his claims and credentials.The training course will combine high points of the historical apologetics presented in The Case for Christ book and movie with specific evangelistic training related to this information. “A Classical Apologist’s Closing Remarks” in Five Views on Apologetics, ed. It is also important to mention that the advocates of these various methods, though they have significant differences, all agree on the importance of offering a rational defense of the Christian faith. Rodney Stark is the Distinguished Professor of the Social Sciences at Baylor University. Armstrong takes a historical look at theology throughout the ages, and reveals how our cultural conceptions of "God" has changed throughout the ages, interacting with art, philosophy, economics and science. This method has a long pedigree, hence the name. And it might be said with some force that many of the differences in these various methods are more matters of emphasis than differences in substance. that allow for the construction of apologetic arguments that ought to persuade any rational person. After God’s existence has been shown, the classical method moves to a presentation of the historical evidences for the Resurrection and deity of Christ, the trustworthiness of Scripture, etc., in order to show that Christianity is the best version of theism as opposed to, say, Judaism and Islam. In other words, the cumulative-case apologist takes the whole of our experience in this world and asks: Which worldview best explains all of this data taken together? It tends to focus chiefly on accumulating various historical and other empirical data for the truth of Christianity. What is the right or best method for giving a reason for the hope that we have in Christ? On the positive side, the Reformed epistemologist will, in the words of Clark, "encourage unbelievers to put themselves in situations where people are typically taken with belief in God" (ibid., 279), attempting to awaken in them their latent sense of the divine. The methods in this school of thought have an optimistic attitude toward the ability of natural human reason to prove (or at least make highly probable) the truth of Christianity. That is, only on the prior evidence that God exists is a miracle even possible” (Classical Apologetics: A Rational Defense of the Christian Faith and a Critique of Presuppositional Apologetics, 146). Presuppositionalists include Cornelius Van Til, Gordon Clark, Greg Bahnsen, John Frame, and (perhaps) Francis Schaeffer. This approach has much in common with the classical method. Making the case for God Posted: 01 May 2012 William Lane Craig is Research Professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology in La Mirada, California and is … The list of contemporary Reformed epistemologists includes Alvin Plantinga, Nicholas Wolterstorff, George Mavrodes, William Alston, and Kelly James Clark. Evangelical apologists who follow the evidential method include Gary Habermas, John W. Montgomery, and Josh McDowell. God, in books: Richard Dawkins, R. Crumb and making the case for God. If Calvin is right that human beings are born with an innate sensus divinitatis (sense of the divine), then people rightly and rationally may come to have a belief in God immediately without the aid of evidence. God, as a matter of fact, alone can prove miracles. Making the case for marriage. He cannot offer arguments with premises that could be accepted consistently by unbelievers. This book explains differences between the content of the Bible and the Qur’an and between the God of the Bible and Allah of the Quran. Liberalism & Individualism: the true cause of doubts about religion and God - an Islamic RESPONSE - Duration: 1:13:18. Contemporary Evangelicals who take this approach include R. C. Sproul, Norman Geisler, William Lane Craig, and J. P. Moreland. That is, he argues that all meaning and thought — indeed, every fact — logically presupposes the truth of Scripture and the existence of the God it reveals. For this reason, evidentialism may be characterized as the “one-step” approach. This method has a long pedigree, hence the name. He cannot offer arguments with premises that could be accepted consistently by unbelievers. There are three approaches to apologetics in this school. There are three approaches to apologetics in this school. Thus evidentialists argue both for theism and Christian theism at the same time without recourse to natural theology. In this scenario, the apologist must simply presuppose the truth of Christianity as the proper starting point in apologetics. Does God exist? That is, only on the prior evidence that God exists is a miracle even possible" (Classical Apologetics: A Rational Defense of the Christian Faith and a Critique of Presuppositional Apologetics, 146). Evangelical Christians like myself, at least those who are not captivated by the anti-intellectualism of our postmodern age, are united in a commitment to the apologetic task. Today, R.C. One of the most dramatic developments in contemporary philosophy has been the arrival of Reformed epistemology, a controversial and influential new approach to religious knowledge. Making the Case for God: Psalm 19 7 The law of the LORD is perfect,reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; 8 the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes; 9 the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rulesof the LORD are true, and righteous altogether. . A set of premises are offered from which either a deductive or inductive conclusion is drawn. God, as a matter of fact, alone can prove miracles. March 25, 2015. Brian Fraga February 7, 2020. Family Center-LCP. The methods in this school of thought have an optimistic attitude toward the ability of natural human reason to prove (or at least make highly probable) the truth of Christianity. Options in Evangelical Apologetics: How are we to defend the faith? Minimize . But, due to the noetic effects of sin, presuppositionalists hold that there is no such common ground between believers and unbelievers. The classical method may be called the "two-step" approach. Unleashing God’s Truth, One Verse at a Time Since 1969. Unless one knows that there is a God who can do miracles, then it makes no sense to talk about a historical event (even a very strange one) as an act of God. In books this Sunday, we look at God. Anthony Bennett. A set of premises are offered from which either a deductive or inductive conclusion is drawn. The Case for Christianity book. 13 lessons. Making the case for God G. W. Leibniz Greatness and goodness separately God’s greatness and goodness considered separately 2. For the sake of clarity, it will prove helpful to divide these apologetic methods into two broad schools of thought. There are no neutral premises or facts that the apologist may appeal to in formulating an argument. Peter Hendriks Okello. But how are we to defend the faith? They put more emphasis on the "noetic effects of sin" (i.e., the detrimental effects of sin on the mind; cf. News, analysis & spirituality by email, twice-weekly from CatholicCulture.org. Here is an outline of the five major methods that Evangelicals have developed for making the case that Christianity is true. Reformed epistemology challenges this assumption. Cumulative-case apologists include Basil Mitchell, Paul Feinberg, C. Stephen Evans, and C. S. Lewis. Sproul begins the monumental task of making the case for God. 3:15). Instead, the case is more like the brief that a lawyer makes in a court of law or that a literary critic makes for a particular interpretation of a book. This study will help you know why you believe what you believe, and instill in you a deeper confidence in the truth of God as revealed in His Word. By demonstrating that the unbeliever cannot argue, think, or live without presupposing God, the presuppositionalist tries to show the unbeliever that his own worldview is inadequate and to get the unbeliever to see that Christianity alone can make sense of his experience. It is an informal argument that pieces together several lines or types of data into a hypothesis or theory that comprehensively explains that data and does so better than any alternative hypothesis. October 10, 2009 | 8:59 am. 2:14; 2 Cor. Texts include the writings of Hume, Descartes, Bacon, Berkeley, Newton, Locke, Mill, Edwards, Kant, Leibniz, Malebranche, Spinoza, Hobbes, and Reid. Most strikingly, they argue that belief in God and the truths of the Christian faith do not require the support of evidence or argument in order for it to be rational. That is, we are determined to be salt and light in the world in part by “making a defense” of Christianity to the unbelievers we encounter all around us. Continuing the series “Defending Your Faith,” Dr. Sproul looks at some of the different approaches to apologetics and how each of them attempts to show God’s existence as he embarks on the Herculean task of making “The Case for God.” I would like to outline the five major methods that Evangelicals have developed for making the case that Christianity is true. Catholic Answers, Inc., San Diego, CA, October 2004. . This type of reasoning is called “adductive” reasoning. The faith of Christianity isn’t a blind faith. Many Christians don’t know where to even begin to do this. And it might be said with some force that many of the differences in these various methods are more matters of emphasis than differences in substance. Some classical apologists do not agree. But, of course, if God is responsible for raising Jesus from the dead, then that very same miracle not only establishes theism but also authenticates Jesus' claim to be the incarnation of God. Rational Faith: Catholic Responses to Reformed Epistemology, University of Notre Dame Press). We have been told that if a belief is unsupported by evidence of some kind, it is irrational to believe it. This implies as well that one cannot appeal to alleged miracles to prove God's existence. Rational Faith: Catholic Responses to Reformed Epistemology, University of Notre Dame Press). To answer this question, the cumulative-case apologist will appeal to certain rational criteria such as logical consistency, empirical fit, comprehensiveness, simplicity, etc. ... God has shown each one of us the way, the vocation, and the life of grace that lies beyond physical life. Evangelicals differ over the answers to these questions. Presuppositionalists include Cornelius Van Til, Gordon Clark, Greg Bahnsen, John Frame, and (perhaps) Francis Schaeffer. Last week, Eric Metaxas wrote a piece for the Wall Street Journal entitled “ Science Increasingly Makes the Case for God.” In it, he argues that the parameters for human life are so precise that they are indicators of God’s existence. Cumulative-case apologists include Basil Mitchell, Paul Feinberg, C. Stephen Evans, and C. S. Lewis. The Case for God is a 2009 book by Karen Armstrong. The major difference lies in the use of miracles. The major difference lies in the use of miracles. John Frame puts the matter this way: “We should present the biblical God not merely as the conclusion to an argument but as the one who makes argument possible” (Five Views on Apologetics, 220). In this scenario, the apologist must simply presuppose the truth of Christianity as the proper starting point in apologetics. But some scholars have pointed out that there are elements of his philosophy that would appear to make him more amenable to the Reformed epistemology view discussed below; see, for example, the discussions in Linda Zagzebski, ed. For the sake of clarity, it will prove helpful to divide these apologetic methods into two broad schools of thought. (Classical apologists usually claim the support of Aquinas because many.aspects of his apologetic method—not least of which is his use of natural theology—seem to fit the classical approach. Science Increasingly Makes the Case for God The odds of life existing on another planet grow ever longer. Did not Darwin drive him out of the empirical world? Though the five apologetic methods discussed above do not constitute an exhaustive list of apologetic approaches, they do represent the most well-known and popular argumentative strategies in the Evangelical apologetics community. For this reason, evidentialism may be characterized as the "one-step" approach. Or was He something more? Unless one knows that there is a God who can do miracles, then it makes no sense to talk about a historical event (even a very strange one) as an act of God. Was Jesus simply a great philosopher? It is argued that the Christian worldview best accounts for the data of experience in light of these criteria, and thus it is the worldview most likely to be true. Listener supported for more than 25 years. William Lane Craig, for example, argues that miracles may be cited as evidence for God's existence but that miracles are best used against the background of a theistic worldview as evidence for the historical claims of Christ (cf. Were the stories just myths? The Wall Street Journal is huge and generally accurate but not the first place you think of when you want to learn more about God. The presuppositionalist attempts, then, to argue transcendentally. There Is a God: Making the Case for Belief By Steve Wolfgang. They might begin, for instance, by arguing for the historical factuality of Jesus' Resurrection and then argue that such an unusual event is explicable only if a being very much like the Christian God exists. Cart is empty. It is an answer to the recent claims that God does not exist from Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris and Daniel Dennett. But, according to advocates of cumulative-case apologetics, the case for Christianity is not best presented as a formal proof. Rev. . The cumulative-case method does “not conform to the ordinary pattern of deductive or inductive reasoning” (Basil Mitchell, The Justification of Religious Belief, Oxford University Press, 35). Dark Matter and Dark Energy. They look for inspiration to examples in the Bible in which the apostles and others used evidence to persuade others to believe (e.g., Acts 2:22; 17:2-3; 22-31; 1 Cor. The discipline in which Christians fulfill this obligation is called apologetics (from Greek apologia, “defense”). Contemporary Evangelicals who take this approach include R. C. Sproul, Norman Geisler, William Lane Craig, and J. P. Moreland. Christians are commanded to defend the faith, to give an “account for the hope that is in you” (1 Pet. Most strikingly, they argue that belief in God and the truths of the Christian faith do not require the support of evidence or argument in order for it to be rational. Scientists can only … Both of the previous two methods, despite their differences, see the case for Christianity as involving the presentation of a formal argument or proof. Movies Like God's Not Dead: Making the Case for Religion . But some scholars have pointed out that there are elements of his philosophy that would appear to make him more amenable to the Reformed epistemology view discussed below; see, for example, the discussions in Linda Zagzebski, ed. This item 6358 digitally provided courtesy of CatholicCulture.org. The data that the cumulative-case advocate seeks to explain include the existence and nature of the cosmos, the reality of religious experience, the objectivity of morality, the existence of consciousness, certain other historical facts such as the Resurrection of Jesus, etc. I would like to outline the five major methods that Evangelicals have developed for making the case that Christianity is true. 3:15). What is a vocation? As Kelly James Clark explains, “Since the Enlightenment there has been a demand to expose all of our beliefs to the searching criticism of reason” (ibid., 267). Therefore, they de-emphasize the use of evidence and reason in apologetics. Quantity: Delete Move to Wishlist. "The Case For God" is an incredible, thoughtful book. Review: The Case for God by Karen ArmstrongKaren Armstrong wages war on the twin evils of religious fundamentalism and militant atheism, says Alain de Botton M.I. The discipline in which Christians fulfill this obligation is called apologetics (from the Greek apologia, "defense"). Therefore, they de-emphasize the use of evidence and reason in apologetics. Delete. The Real Deal: Making the Case for the One True God Implications for Radical Islam and the Global Church. 2:14; 2 Cor. Classical Method. As Sproul, John Gerstner, and Art Lindsley argue, “Miracles cannot prove God. It is a gift from God — it comes from God himself. Since then, the article has garnered over 600,000 Facebook shares and more than 9,250 comments, making it, unofficially, the most popular article in Wall Street Journal history. Critiques Of God is the only collection of writings to present, in a comprehensive way, the case against belief in God. If your answer is yes, then, can you prove it? On the positive side, the Reformed epistemologist will, in the words of Clark, “encourage unbelievers to put themselves in situations where people are typically taken with belief in God” (ibid., 279), attempting to awaken in them their latent sense of the divine. The reason is that historical facts (including alleged miracles) are said to be interpreted through the framework of one's worldview. Sproul begins the monumental task of making the case for God. The Case for God is an entire semester at college packed into a single book—a voluminous, dizzying intellectual history. What is the right or best method for giving a reason for the hope that we have in Christ? This type of reasoning is called "adductive" reasoning. They might begin, for instance, by arguing for the historical factuality of Jesus’ Resurrection and then argue that such an unusual event is explicable only if a being very much like the Christian God exists. 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