Daily Archives: April 8, 2010
In my last post, I answered three of the six questions posed by Carlos, a YouTube skeptic who goes by the alias “otherwisesaid.” We saw that the questions were nothing but rhetoric, designed to throw Christians off their game. And, sadly, it probably has worked in the past.
Now, I will answer the remaining three questions.
Are you in sync with Mark 16: 17-18? I’m not. Mark 16:9-18 isn’t found in the earliest MSS, which means that these verses are not inerrant because they are not meant to be in the Bible in the first place. Therefore, if you handle a poisonous snake, you’ll get bit and die. No surprise there.
Why are you Christian, and not Muslim? Do you think you’d be a Muslim instead of a Christian if you were born in Pakistan? The Bible actually predicts this sort of thing. Proverbs 22:6 reads “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” The reason that few people “jump ship” into another religion or even atheism is because they have been taught to believe these things from a young age, and that means that they will not let it go easily.
Combine that with the fact that Islam is a theocracy that forbids evangelizing its adherents (and punishes infractions with death), and you have a near-impossible task in trying to convert the average Muslim to Christianity. The Great Commission commands us, however, to bring the gospel message to all nations, and the sad truth is we’re just not fulfilling Christ’s command very well in this case.
I am a Christian because I’ve studied the issues and have concluded that Christianity is truth. Objections to it melt when the Bible is properly understood. Most people are in the religion that they’re in because they’ve been taught not to look at it, to give it a pass on critical analysis (YES, I just agreed with the skeptics here). I believe if they critically analyzed their religion, comparing it to Christianity, there would be more Christians.
Can things be added or removed from the Bible? Considering how the Bible was compiled, Revelations 22:18 becomes irrelevant to this question. First off, dude, the book of the Bible is Revelation, not “Revelations.” That is one of my biggest pet peeves coming from critics of the Bible. Get the stinkin’ name of the book right, or you shoot your credibility with heavier firepower than favoriting the Mr. Deity videos!
Second, I agree with the interpretation that Revelation 22:18 is meant only to apply to the book of Revelation. Trying to apply it to the entire Bible is a real stretch.
That said, the canon of Scripture would be a fallible collection of infallible works. The canon was decided upon by the bishops of the universal church in council, and these men are fallible. I do believe that they have correctly recognized God speaking through the words of the New Testament writers. I don’t think there is reason to suppose that anything in the Bible is wrongly placed there. But, some of the other works not in the Bible, such as the Shepherd of Hermas or Paul’s letter to the Laodicians, may be inspired and should have been included.
I don’t see a reason why the church would need to add to Scripture. Scripture contains the teachings of Jesus and his apostles, the full and final revelation of God to mankind.
Rhetorical questions designed to challenge one’s faith. Typical skeptic. Surely he hasn’t sorted through the issues himself. He probably got inspired by Why Won’t God Heal Amputees and decided to make his own video. Nothing here is earth-shattering to a believer with a firm foundation of faith.
YouTube appears to be an untapped resource of materials that I can blog about. The whole site seems to be filled with critics of Christianity, and they aren’t shy about keeping vlogs about their doubts. I should have looked more seriously at YouTube months ago, when Caleb started deconverting due to materials that he saw via YouTube.
So I searched a bit and found some interesting materials. I thought that I’d answer a video every now and then. I’m going to try for ones that really make a person think, but I might take on a capitally stupid one just for amusement purposes every now and again.
This video caught my eye first, because I like to think deeply about my faith. Videos that ask questions, though usually rhetorical, make me think more deeply and I believe actually strengthen my faith in God, though they’re intended to do the opposite. Read the rest of this entry