Alpha & Omega Ministries Apologetics Blog
The Foundation of Christian Apologetics
01/29/2007 - James WhiteI had a tremendous time this weekend. Far beyond my expectations. My mind is still reeling from all the information I took in regarding the oldest manucripts of the Qur'an. Great information. I'm tremendously excited. You will definitely be hearing the fruit of this weekend in future debates. I am thankful to those who support this work that I had the opportunity of flying out here and meeting with these leading scholars in this field. Though we have kept expenses for this trip very low, please remember us at this time. We are always in need of your prayers and your support.
It is a bit of a rough transition to go from hours of intense conversation on the Qur'an, Arabic orthography, textual transmissional issues, etc., to reading the blogosphere, I confess. But I just saw Kevin Johnson basically saying I'm a big mean nasty guy and that it is mean of me to challenge him to put his claims to the test and show us how he exegetes Romans 5:1 via the "mind of the Church" as he himself said. I sorta expect that, to be honest. It is, in fact, an impossible challenge since, well, his original claim just didn't make any sense. He's just not willing to admit it. But the point has been made for all willing to think about it.
But I'm also mean for pointing out that the rC's are hardly known for their front-line apologetics work. This is an arguable point? Those who assure us that we can't possibly know what Jesus said or meant in the synagogue in Capernaum, who regularly undercut the perspecuity of Scripture, enslaving us instead to human tradition, somehow have something of substance to say to Islam's apologists? Excuse me? What are you going to do, invite them to sit down over a cup of coffee while you discuss your hadith versus theirs? Please. Johnson once again ignores the context of even my own words (this "ignore the context, make it say what you want it to say" syndrome he suffers from is pretty consistent anyway) which was in reference to biblical authority and clarity outside of the addition of human authorities. It is sort of basic to apologetics with other world religions, especially with Islam. Johnson knows this. He just refuses to face it.
Leaving the less-than-edifying, I point out yet again what I have said so many times before: the great apologetic divide goes to a simple question: has God spoken with clarity or not? Sadly, the largest portion of the academy today, Christian or non, says, "no." If you believe God has indeed spoken with clarity and force, you are in a minority. And you know how you can discover the strength of the foundation upon which a gospel presentation is based (or, at least, how consistent the person is in their presentation)? It's pretty easy. The Apostles did not present the resurrection and the call to repentance and faith as probabilites. "It is highly probable that if you weigh the evidence in an unbiased fashion that you will come to the conclusion that there is a better chance Jesus rose from the dead than there is He didn't." Is that how the Apostles preached? No. They presented not only the existence of God as a certainty, but the resurrection is presented as a reality that demands of every man, woman, and child, the response of repentance and faith. That kind of preaching requires the highest view of Scripture, and sadly, when people say, "Why don't we hear powerful preaching any longer?" the answer is not difficult to find. Few believe they any longer represent God as an ambassador with a certain message with divine authority. That's why.
In any case, I'm headed home later today, and so the DL should be at its regular time tomorrow. And don't forget the TC (Textual Criticism) series that starts on Thursday!