Alpha & Omega Ministries Apologetics Blog
Apologetics Roman Style
03/30/2007 - James WhiteEnough of demonstrating that you can find sophistry alive and well even in Texas. But I did notice this wonderful comment from Prejean that brings us full circle:
Regarding Catholic responses to the Jesus Tomb story, that's another example of laughable scholarship, so the most common Catholic response has been to laugh it off.
If you follow the link it is to Mark Shea. In the first paragraph Shea demonstrates that he really has no idea what the argument is from Jacobovici (he seems to think Cameron is the brain child of the film and book, which is untrue), and even misrepresents it.
This is a very common means of responding to the Talpiot Theory. I call it the Ostrich Defense. Just stick your head in the sand and laugh about how "silly" the argument is. I mean, isn't that what Barbour and Madrid and Prejean have done with the criticisms of Roman Catholic positions offered by myself, Eric Svendsen, Bill Webster, etc.? Of course. Mockery is a great defense when you are only concerned about keeping your core constituency happy. But it is not an actual apologetic. It does not fit with the command in 1 Peter 3:15, does it? Most assuredly not. It surely does not help those who are confused by such attacks, and it does not help the saints to grow in grace and knowledge. You do not become deeply rooted in truth with your head stuck in the sand.
Let's say the scholarship in The Lost Tomb of Jesus is laughable. So what? Do you respond to laughable scholarship with...laughter? Or do you respond with sober, sound examination that demonstrates the inconsistencies of the argumentation? The Ostrich Defense has led to the situation we face in education today. We raise our children in the church, send them off to the local college or university, and there they find themselves unarmed and ill prepared to deal with the gun-slinging professor of philosophy and world religions who has The Lost Tomb of Jesus on constant reruns in his classroom and whose bookshelf is filled with the works of John Shelby Spong and The Jesus Seminar. Many find Mormonism as a religion laughable, too. That does not mean you do not prepare yourself to give a reasoned response to their claims.
It does not surprise me that this is the popular view from Rome, for in reality, she has no foundation upon which to do apologetics anyway, given the mythical character of her own definitional, self-defined dogmas. When you have to play so fast and loose with history as Rome's defenders do, you are crippled when it comes to meaningful apologetics. But there is no reason for those outside of Rome's sphere of power to behave in such a fashion. The Talpiot Theory gives us a chance to proclaim the truth about the very central affirmation of the faith. It is hard to do that with your head in the sand.