December 15, 2017

Coffee Cup Apologetics 4: What is my one reason for being a Christian?

041-coffee-steam-cup-pic.jpgI answer a listener criticism, and suggest how to answer “What is the one reason you are a Christian?”

Coffee Cup Apologetics now has its own website: ccapologetics.wordpress.com

Comments

  1. Michael,

    Thanks for addressing my comment on coffee-cup number three. I agree with you with respect to the “big picture that God sees” in terms of eternal good.

    A good friend of mine recently told me that he doesn’t really thnik that a theodicy is a good way of trying to think about evil/ good and God. In fact the best way in his opinion to talk about these things is within the Christian worldview is to view faith as a “protest” against suffering and evil. Also, as an add-on to this, trying to rationalise the presence of evil becomes moot if evil itself is viewed as irrationality expressed in humanity.

    I like this way of looking at the evil/good question, and it seems to echo the lifestyle that Jesus modelled in terms of dealing with evil and/or suffering in the world.

  2. hey mr. iMonk,
    I enjoyed your audio. You mentioned that there are several unique points in your life where you have encountered Jesus and knew it to be him. I’m just curius if you have any posts on what that experience was? just a curiosity on my part.

    vapor

  3. Michael,
    I enjoyed your podcast. I wanted to comment on Phil’s question as well. I’m sure that you and Phil have likely heard what I will say, but just in case:

    C.S. Lewis, while discussing pain in many of the same terms as you spoke of (pain being a tool that God uses, etc.), also made a point of emphasizing the origin of pain as sin. It was mankind and Satan that originated sin and consequently introduced pain – this is quiet clear in the first few chapters of Genesis. God’s use of pain is therefore an exploitation of something bad to bring about what is good. Lewis depicts this in several of his books (most notably his Space Trilogy) as the earth being enemy-occupied territory that God is re-invading. Of course God also knew ahead of time that this would happen, which brings in the other points, but it’s I think it’s one (of several) useful ways of viewing the issue.

    Your thoughts on how to introduce Christianity to people is interesting to me. While I have always known that personal testimony/witness is important, I guess I have shied away from it some lately due to the difficulty of applicability; it’s hard for me to talk about my experiences and thoughts in a general way that they can connect to. But you are certainly right in saying that it is a very valuable way of connecting to people and connecting them to the Gospel. Perhaps the generalizability (if that’s a word) is not so important. Or perhaps pairing down personal stories to concentrate on the basics of salvation is part of it to.

    Thinking back over scripture, I can certainly see personal testimony being used (such as by Paul when he spoke of his conversion), but there is also heavy reliance on scripture, even when dealing with Gentiles (such as Paul on trial in Caesarea). Do you think that personal testimony is just one of several ways of introducing the Gospel? I would appreciate more discussion of this subject.

  4. patrickstahl says:

    Michael,

    Are the Coffe Cups available on iTunes?

  5. Rob (an heir to the Kingdom) says:

    Good PodCast.

    I’d like to hear you talk about spiritual warfare…specifically as it relates to how much we should focus on how we Christians are attacked by demonic forces vs. how much we should devote ourselves to being transformed into the image of Christ.

    There is certainly plenty of sin to go around. But are the things we experience which we attribute to spiritual attack more a function of external forces acting on us or is it rather our rebellious nature that we would rather give in to our desires? I find it more the latter. Many of the Christians I come into contact with at work and at church want to see a demon (or Satan himself) behind every bad thing that happens to us.

    As far as I can tell, the “attacks” we experience are more as a result of our own sin manifesting itself than demons wreaking havoc. No doubt there are demonic forces at work. But what is the right understanding? Do we dovote ourselves to study of spiritual warfare and how to be warriors or is our time best spent learning how to be disciples?

    I would like to hear your thoughts on that. Thanks.