Think About IT: Forgiving the Unforgivable

Bill Elliff was one of my predecessors at Trinity Baptist Church, and he is also the one who recommended me to the church. I have heard Bill and Tom Elliff speak a few times about the divorce of their parents and how difficult it was. I found the following synopsis of their mother’s struggle and thought you might be blessed by her love, faith, and forgiveness. Continue reading →

Think About IT: Stephen Hawking Lives in Fear

Steven Hawking is acclaimed as the greatest scientific mind since Albert Einstein, which I have no reason to doubt; however, his erudition does nothing to bring peace to his soul, but rather launches him into pessimism and looking in all the wrong places for meaning and security.

Hawking was questioned on CNN about why he wanted to take a zero gravity flight. “Many people have asked me why I am taking this flight. I am doing it for many reasons,” he said before the flight. “First of all, I believe that life on Earth is at an ever increasing risk of being wiped out by a disaster such as sudden global warming, nuclear war, a genetically engineered virus, or other dangers. I think the human race has no future if it doesn’t go into space. I therefore want to encourage public interest in space.”[1]

Interviewed by The Telegraph in the UK he said, “I don’t think the human race will survive the next thousand years, unless we spread into space. There are too many accidents that can befall life on a single planet. But I’m an optimist. We will reach out to the stars.”[2]

Hawking told the BBC “that life could be wiped out by a nuclear disaster or an asteroid hitting the planet.” Then the Cambridge academic added, “Once we spread out into space and establish colonies, our future should be safe.” He says humans have to go to another star.[3]

“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life.” (John 6:47)

 


[1]Http://web.archive.org/web/20070504171857/http://www.cnn.com/2007/TECH/space/04/26/hawking.flight.ap/index.html; accessed 3/14/10
[2] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1359562/Colonies-in-space-may-be-only-hope-says-Hawking.html Telegraph; 10/16/01 accessed 3/14/10
[3] http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6158855.stm, Accessed 3/14/10

Why It Is Immoral and Impossible to Exclude One’s Religious Views from the Public Square Debate?

As many of you know, I participated in the Oxford Round Table at Harris Manchester College in Oxford in July. I presented a paper entitled “A Proposal for a Proportional Accommodation and Appreciation Model For Governing the Relationship of Church and State.” I am presently working to make that paper into a book.

However, because of the October 2010 proclamation of “Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender history month in the city of Norman” and the current desire of the Human Rights Commission to change the wording of some governing documents of Norman to include “sexual orientation and gender identity” as protected classes, as well as the intentions of others that are seeking to capitalize on what they see as a “gay sympathetic” Chief of Police, Mayor, and City Council, I wanted to blog an excerpt of the moral argument that I gave in the paper.

Once published, the book will give constitutional, intellectual, historical and moral arguments defending the right, need, and appropriateness of bringing our religious convictions into the public square. There will also be footnote references to the book in this blog. But in order to help us understand and articulate that appropriateness in light of the current local political situation, I am posting the moral argument. Prayerfully, the book will be out soon. Following is a section of the moral argument.

Thus, the question is, “Is it moral and rational to exclude religious opinions from our republic or democratic public marketplace of ideas just because those opinions involve an aspect of faith—a faith assumption?” For the following reasons, my answer is NO. Continue reading →

Defending the Faith

Like it or not, the time in which we live demands that we as Christians be able to give some reasons for our belief in the truthfulness of Christianity and the Scripture. For example, Christians must be able to answer questions like are the disciples reliable resources? Are miracles possible? How can we test the reliability of ancient documents? Was Jesus merely a good man or teacher? Is there any evidence for believing in the resurrection?

Evidence for the trustworthiness of the Scripture and the claims of Christ and the Apostles are essential for speaking to our culture.

Richard Carpenter presented a superb paper in The Roundtable in Ideology entitled “The Case for Christ.” It is a succinct treasury of evidence for the trustworthiness of the claims of the Scripture and Christ. If you want to be equipped to answer some of the toughest questions concerning your Christian faith, then read this.

Case for Christ RT 2008

Think About IT: Should Churches Be Involved in Science, State Education, Discussing Darwinism, Sponsoring Debates about Science, Etc.?

According to Darwin Day Celebration, there were 729 events scheduled in 45 countries for Darwin Day 2009, in commemoration of the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth.

In response to the celebration of Darwin Day at the University of Oklahoma, and their invitation to Richard Dawkins to speak, Trinity Baptist Church collaborated with others in order to provide an opportunity for Academic Freedom.

The response involved hosting a conference at our church, “Designed For Faith”, a presentation at OU by John West and Casey Luskin, both from the Discovery Institute, and a debate at OU between Intelligent Design theorist William Dembski and Darwinian philosopher and historian of science Michael Ruse, as well as producing some printed information.

Now this kind of endeavor by a church occasions the query from Christians, should churches be involved in challenging “scientific claims” or exposing the weaknesses of Darwinism and the bias of state education? Many in academia have no question, but rather state emphatically, the church should not be involved since that is mixing religion and science and/or violating separation of church and state; in other words, the churches should mind their own business and leave educating young people to the public school and university system.

Should churches be involved in such issues? My answer is emphatically and unequivocally YES! Consider the following: Continue reading →

Nihilism and Existentialism Not as Esoteric as You Think!

Rarely do I find a succinct, clear presentation of two somewhat esoteric worldviews like “Nihilism” and “Existentialism”. However, Christoph Koehler did just that in his Round Table presentation on these topics; consequently, I thought I would blog his presentation for you.Now, I know that some of you are thinking what do nihilism and existentialism have to do with real life. Well, I think if you will read this summary, you will find some ideas in them that you hear in various forums in the real world. For example, the vacuousness of naturalism, which is the dominant metaphysic in academia today, is revealed in his section on nihilism. The reason you may not even be aware of the prevalence of naturalism in normal conversations, lectures, and pronouncements is that its presence is quite often obfuscated by the gauzy disguise of scientific jargon.

Check it out!
Continue reading →

The Environment: A Christian Perspective

Recently, Page Lynn presented a paper on the environment in The Ethics Round Table. From which, I suggested four guidelines to The Round Table to assist us in thinking and acting christianly about environmental issues and our involvement. Following are those four suggestions. For a fuller discussion of this issue I recommend Cornwall Alliance web site, or sign up for the Round Table next year. Continue reading →

What I Learned from an Atheist!

“There is a God” is the title of an excellent new book by the internationally known former atheist, Antony Flew. The book chronicles his journey into and from atheism over his long and influential life. Years ago I remember Norman Geisler saying that Antony Flew was the most formidable debater for atheism.

Well, I have learned—actually been reminded of—some things from this former atheist, which I think are worth mentioning. Continue reading →