27:52 And tombs were opened, and the bodies of many saints who had died were raised. 27:53 (They came out of the tombs after his resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.)
Did these remarkable events actually happen?
So-called ‘mainstream’ critical scholarship regards it as ‘legendary’. According to Harper’s Bible Commentary, for example, ‘One wonders what the resurrected saints were doing between Good Friday and Easter. The story flatly contradicts Paul’s teaching that other resurrections will occur only at the Parousia (1 Cor.…
I rather like how Jeremy Linn has captured some of the most popular atheist arguments against Christianity, and hinted at where some of its weaknesses might lie.
Moreover, says Linn, ‘for each of the arguments, we give an example question you can ask to better understand where the person who gave the argument is coming from. The goal is to listen and understand, rather than to dominate and tear down.’
1: Who created God?
This question is asked under the assumption that God needs a creator.…
Many Christians will be aware of the evidentialist approach to apologetics. This approach uses among other strategies, logical arguments for the existence of God and historical evidence for the person and work of Jesus Christ. These are marshalled in order to convince the unbeliever see that the Christian faith is reasonable and evidence-based.
Less familiar, however, is the presuppositionalist approach. Rooted in the thought of Augustine and Anslem (“I believe in order to understand”), it is most often associated with Cornelius Van Til and his disciples. …
Drew Wilmott writes about how people – believers and non-believers alike – often use spurious arguments to defend their own version of the ‘truth’ while disparaging others’.
1. I only read/watch/listen to what I already agree with.
My views are, therefore, never tested, I never give myself an opportunity to be corrected, or to enter into the thought-world of those with whom I disagree. I see them (insofar as I see them at all) only through the lens of other people’s opinions. …
Why did Jesus perform miracles? A number of reasons may be suggested:-
To authenticate the message of the gospel. This was acknowledged by Nicodemus (Jn 3:2) and affirmed in Heb 2:4. Miracles ‘give evidence that God is truly at work and so serve to advance the gospel’. This was true not only in Jesus’ ministry, but also applied in the early church (Acts 8:6–8; 9:35, 42).
To bear witness to the fact that God’s kingdom has come (Mt 10:7f; 12:28; Lk 4:18; 9:1f).
Shared recently on Facebook was an image of Pope Francis and the following quote, attributed to him:-
Now there is some very slippery language here. In particular, it is not at all clear what the Pope means by ‘a good person’. Yes, there are some atheists who are kinder, gentler, and more caring than some religious people (shame on us!). And if that is all the Pope is saying, then it’s true.
But the Pope knows as well as I do that the challenge of the gospel is not to make ourselves ‘good enough for God’, but the ‘believe on the Lord Jesus Christ’. …
The Christian faith has only a partial answer to the problem of evil. A great deal of mystery remains. Most Christians, however, lean upon several fundamental truths.
1. Christianity acknowledges the reality of evil. When Jesus taught his disciples to pray, he included the petition “Deliver us from evil.” The Christian faith, unlike some other religions, never regards evil as an illusion. It is not a misguided way of thinking, a problem of human perception of reality.…