Thursday, June 30, 2011

World Religions Index

Looking for info on the major world religions as well as some of the major cults? The single best starting place is the excellent World Religions Index, from LeaderU. Unlike other "all about" sites, this site has no advertising. You'll find clear, concise outlines of the major key beliefs of cults and world religions, and their comparisons with Biblical Christianity.

• Go to the Cults page
• Go to the World Religions page
• Read articles on world religions here.
• Read personal stories from those involved in these religions here.
• Go to the main index page here.

Enjoy.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Person-Sensitive Apologetics MP3 Audio by Brian Auten

This audio makes the case that the content and conduct of Christian apologetics must be person-sensitive in two ways. First, it must be sensitive to the audience one is interacting with. Second, it must be sensitive to the person of Jesus Christ. Being person-sensitive entails adapting one’s content to the audience, being consistent in one’s conduct as a Christian, being mindful of the response of the individual, being informed by scripture and influenced by the Holy Spirit. Download the PDF Transcript. Feel free to adapt for your own use.
Full MP3 Audio here (20 min)

Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Terminology Tuesday: Dialectic

Dialectic: A process of thinking or argument that involves contradictions and their resolution, sometimes in the form of questions and opposing answers. The term has been used very differently by different philosophers. Plato thought of dialectic as the highest form of reasoning. Aristotle and later medieval philosophers tended to think of dialectic as a formal method of disputation. Immanuel Kant developed a "transcendental dialectic" that attempted to reveal the contradictions into which uncritical reason falls. G. W. F. Hegel developed a dialectical logic, which he saw as providing the formal structure of history as well, seen as the progressive unfolding of the Absolute. This historical dialectic was taken over by Karl Marx and put to use in his dialectical materialism.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 35.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Author Interview: David Lamb - God Behaving Badly

Today's interview is with David T. Lamb, associate professor of OT at Biblical Theological Seminary. He is  author of a newly released book God Behaving Badly: Is the God of the Old Testament God Angry, Sexist, and Racist? He talks about his background in Old Testament studies, dealing with difficult passages in the OT, the angry God and the loving God, principles for reading OT passages for better understanding, responding to the claims that the Bible is sexist, racist, and violent, law versus grace in the Old Testament and the New, the importance of working through and discussing tough questions, using the OT to point people to Christ, and more. Check out the book here. David's blog is here.

Full Interview MP3 Audio here. (50 min)

Enjoy.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday Quote: F.F. Bruce on the New Testament Canon

“One thing must be emphatically stated. The New Testament books did not become authoritative for the Church because they were formally included in a canonical list; on the contrary, the Church included them in her canon because she already regarded them as divinely inspired, recognizing their innate worth and generally apostolic authority, direct or indirect.”

- F.F. Bruce (The New Testament Documents, p. 22)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

DVD Review: Metamorphosis

Metamorphosis: The Beauty and Design of ButterfliesMetamorphosis: The Beauty and Design of Butterflies is the latest DVD produced by Illustra Media. For those familiar with Illustra's growing family of documentaries, this DVD will fit in nicely with a collection that emphasizes the structures of design and intricacy found woven throughout nature's wonders. Metamorphosis takes an in-depth look at butterflies.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/17 - 06/24)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
Common Sense Truth
The Problem of Miracles
Kindle 3G Summer Giveaway
Big Religion Comparison Chart
Ancient Texts Compared to the Bible
Cisco Sinks to Dishonorable Low
What Diversity and Inclusion Mean at Cisco
Are Old Testament Laws Evil? (PDF)
Atheists and Unicorns: Emotional Appeal
Victor Stenger replies to “Who made God?”
Lessons from the Life of Francis Schaeffer
Butler: All of the evidence taken together
Verses to Know When Witnessing to Mormons
Letters to a Mormon Elder by James White
Mary Jo Sharp: Jesus Never Existed? (vid)
Ten Arguments for the Existence of God
Praxman and Zeitgeistscheizer on Freedom
Fatherhood and Atheism: Paul Vitz Interview MP3
The Historic Alliance of Christianity and Science
Check out "God and Pen" - Philosophy of Religion blog
Does the Scientific Method Preclude the Existence of Miracles?
Counterpoints: Richard Dawkins and Pastor Richard Wurmbrand
Confident Christianity: Houston Student Apologetics Training Camp 2011
Audio from J.P. Moreland’s “Love Your God With All Your Mind” lecture

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350+ Lectures on Science and Religion

The Faraday Institute for Science and Religion is an interdisciplinary research enterprise based at St Edmund's College, Cambridge. In addition to academic research, the Institute engages in the public understanding of science and religion by means of Courses, Conferences, Lectures, Seminars and the Media. The website also has a huge multimedia archive, with lectures on science/religion topics by such names as John Polkinghorne, Alister McGrath, Robin Collins and George Ellis. There is plenty of food for thought (and some you won't agree with). That being said, check out the multimedia archive for tons of audio, such as:
350+ More Science & Religion Lectures here.

Enjoy.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Top 16 Apologetics Podcasts Updated

One of the must-visit pages on Apologetics315 is The 16 Best Apologetics Podcasts. With so much content available to listen to, it's good to have a selection of "hand-picked" resources that consistently deliver quality material. Although tastes vary, this list may serve well as a starting point for those looking for podcasts to equip them to defend the faith. Since the last update of this list, many have stayed, some have moved, some have gone, and some have been added. Have a listen.

See The 16 Best Apologetics Podcasts.

Enjoy.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Can Atheists Live Without God? by Norman Geisler MP3

In this audio from The Voice of Truth Podcast, Norman Geisler speaks on the subject: Can Atheists Live Without God? Geisler discusses what atheists say, what the Bible says, and what the evidence shows. He argues that atheists can't live without God logically, morally, psychologically, and religiously.

Interview with Norman Geisler here. Pick up I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist also.

Full MP3 Audio here. (55 min)
Enjoy

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Terminology Tuesday: Jainism

Jainism: One of the religions of India, distinguished from Hinduism by its refusal to accept the Brahmanic Vedas as authoritative. Jainism grew out of the teachings of Mahavira, a fifth-century B.C. contemporary of Gautama (the Buddha). It is distinguished by its emphasis on asceticism and commitment to the principle of harmlessness.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 63.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Apologist Interview: David Robertson

Today's interview is with Pastor David Robertson of St Peter’s Free Church in Dundee, Scotland and Chairman of the Solas Centre for Public Christianity. He talks about his interaction with Richard Dawkins' God Delusion book, his open letters to Dawkins (and The Dawkins Letters book), his thoughts on persuasive evangelism, the goals of evangelistic conversation, the positive effect from the new atheism, how being a pastor overlaps with evangelism and apologetics, the problem with American apologetics, the importance of practical application, connecting with an audience, the top issues that always seem to come up, the state of the new atheism today, the influence of postmodernism, stopping calling yourself an apologist, our tone with others, the starting point for conversations, and more.

Full Interview MP3 Audio here (44 min)

Enjoy.
Apologies: the audio quality was substandard this week because of a technical glitch.
Subscribe to the Apologetics 315 Interviews podcast here or in iTunes.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sunday Quote: F.F. Bruce on the Christ Myth

“Some writers may toy with the fancy of a ‘Christ-myth,’ but they do not do so on the ground of historical evidence. The historicity of Christ is as axiomatic for an unbiased historian as the historicity of Julius Caesar. It is not historians who propagate the ‘Christ-myth’ theories.”

- F.F. Bruce (The New Testament Documents, p. 123)
[HT: Eric]

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Apologetics Video Clips for Small Groups

Someone recently emailed asking for suggestions for apologetics videos that would be appropriate for use in a small group setting. These sorts of videos would relatively short clips, illustrating a particular topic, and useful for prompting further discussion. So here are some of the video resources that have been featured in the past that are suitable for small group use.

One-Minute Apologist
These are quick and short videos by well known apologists on a variety of topics.

200+ Apologetics Videos by AllAboutGod.com
More short form videos on lots of various topics. Good for sparking discussion.

William Lane Craig Q&A Videos
These are more scholarly, but still short and good. Excellent for Reasonable Faith Chapters.

Apologetics Videos, Curriculum and PDF downloads
These are handy adaptations from the Apologetics Study Bible, including PDF handouts.

The Inner Life of the Cell Video
This is a good video introduction to intelligent design.

All of the above resources are found online. But if you are looking for DVDs for small group use, some great first choices are The Lee Strobel Film Collection and DVDs by Illustra Media. What videos would you recommend for small group use?

Enjoy.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/10 - 06/17)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
If I were an atheist
Allah is not Jehovah
The Myth of Junk DNA
Q&A with Lee Strobel
Who Created the Creator?
The Question of Slavery
Kindle 3G Summer Giveaway!
Alvin Plantinga's A/C is on the Fritz
Philosophia Christi: Summer 2011 Issue
Are There Contradictions in Bible? (vid)
Sharing the gospel with Jehovah's Witnesses
Atheists, Doubt, Reason and the Search for Truth
Experts' Evidence for Jesus' Crucifixion (vid)
Reason to Believe's Summer Resource Catalog (PDF)
The Metaphysics of the Kalam Cosmological Argument
• Is Old-Earth Creationism Biblical? Paul Copan Interview
    part 1 MP3 part 2 MP3
Is Fulfilled Prophecy of Value for Scholarly Apologetics?
William Lane Craig Reviews the Sam Harris debate MP3 part 2
Lee Strobel Interviews Brian Auten on the State of Apologetics
• New DVD: Metamorphosis: The Beauty and Design of Butterflies
Confident Christianity Apologetics Conference 2011 Promo Video
The National Conference on Christian Apologetics Oct 28 & 29
Big props for Polly Toynbee, President of the British Humanist Association
UK Atheist Finally Agrees to Debate William Lane Craig (It's not Richard Dawkins)
Frank Turek Fired by Cisco for political views even though they were never mentioned during work

Get these sorts of links and more by following on Twitter.
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Kindle 3G Summer Giveaway!

What are your summer reading plans? Will you be reading your books on a Kindle? You could be! Apologetics315 is hosting a summer giveaway of a Third Generation Kindle 3G. This has been such a useful tool that it seemed good to give one away.

So why not enter the drawing? Using Punchtab below, you can have multiple entries into the drawing. (And if you are looking for good apologetics books, here's a great place to start.) Once you’ve clicked the entry button, you’ll have the opportunity to increase your chances of winning by leaving a comment, mentioning the giveaway on Twitter, etc.

If you are reading this via Facebook or RSS, please visit the blog to enter.
Enjoy!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Debates on Islam and Christianity

The Acts 17 Apologetics Ministry's Answering Muslims website is a good place to find content interacting with Islam. Of particular interest to many readers will be the debates page, which features dozens of debates on topics between Christians and Muslims:
Can We Trust the Qur'an?
Does the Evidence Show that Islam is True?
Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?
Did Jesus Die on the Cross?
• and many more...

So be sure to check out the Acts 17 Apologetics Ministry for resources addressing Islam.
Go to the debate page here.

Enjoy.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Slavery in the Bible: 8 Quick Resources

Why is slavery permitted in the Bible? (CARM)
Slavery in the Bible (All About Worldview)
• Does the Bible condone slavery?
  [also MP3] (Got Questions)
• Does the Bible Condone Slavery? (RZIM)
• What God says about slavery (PleaseConvinceMe)
• Some Initial Reflections on Slavery in the New Testament (Daniel Wallace)
• Slavery in Bible Times (PDF)
• The Bible, God, Genocide, Slavery, Misogyny, and Other Strange Stuff (Paul Copan)

Check it out.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Welcome to Apologetics 315

For those visiting from Lee Strobel's newsletter, thanks for stopping by. Here you'll find a wealth of quality resources making the case for the truth of Christianity. Every day you'll find something new. So feel free to subscribe to the RSS feed, the Twitter feed, or follow on Facebook. More about the site here.

By the way, if you are not a subscriber to Lee Strobel's newsletter, you can sign up here.
Welcome!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Interview: Marcia Montenegro (former astrologer)

Today's interview is with Marcia Montenegro, founder of Christian Answers for the New Age (CANA). She talks about the difference between the New Age and the occult, how people tend to get into these areas, her journey into the occult and work as a professional astrologer, the nature of spiritual experiences and what's going on, spirit guides, astrology, her conversion to Christianity, and her advice to those interacting with those caught up in the New Age or occult.

Marcia is also the author of the book SpellBound: The Paranormal Seduction of Today's Kids. Find her website and resources online here.

Full Interview MP3 Audio here (1hr)

Enjoy.
Subscribe to the Apologetics 315 Interviews podcast here or in iTunes.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday Quote: Stephen T. Davis on Apologetics

"In truth, faith needs apologetics. It needs it both to answer both the negative arguments of the resurrection and to construct positive arguments in favor of it. Apologetics will not create faith, but perhaps, for some, it will pave the way for it or make it possible. What is destructive of genuine Christian faith, in my opinion, is not apologetics, but unfounded beliefs, unjustified commitments. Unsound arguments are irrational leaps of faith. It is the aim of apologetics to prevent Christian faith from amounting to anything like that."

- Stephen T. Davis
(Risen Indeed: Making Sense of the Resurrection. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1993)
[HT: Eric]

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Apologetics By Any Other Name

"What's apologetics?" That may be the first question you hear from people who are not familiar with the discipline of giving a rational defense of the Christian faith.

And even if someone does understand the meaning of the word, the actual word "apologetics" may carry with it some negative baggage. For instance, some equate apologetics with being argumentative, being overly intellectual, or being too philosophical.

For this reason, it's often useful to simply bypass the word altogether. Why start with a stumbling block? Instead, apologetics can be referred to as defending the faith. Or maybe giving good reasons. Or answering tough questions. The list goes on...

And so here's a growing list of alternative words or phrases for apologetics. Feel free to offer your suggestions in the comments below.
  • defending Christianity
  • the defense of the faith
  • thinking through the issues
  • being thoughtful about your convictions
  • being thoughtful about the faith
  • critically examining Christian truth
  • contending for the faith
  • answering the tough questions
  • examining worldviews
  • studying Christian defenses
  • handling tough issues
  • answering skeptics
  • discussing your convictions
  • pre-evangelism
  • persuasive evangelism
  • showing Christianity is true
  • giving good answers
  • asking the big questions
  • evaluating the evidence
  • answering questions; questioning answers
  • making the case for faith
  • defending and confirming the Gospel
  • showing why Christianity is true
  • reasoning with unbelievers
  • searching for truth
Perhaps some combination of these sorts of words or phrases are more self-explanatory and helpful for those who are unfamiliar with apologetics as a discipline. Share your tips!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/03 - 06/10)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
The Creation-Evolution Debate in a Nutshell
Audio: Interview with Dr. William Lane Craig
Lawrence Krauss Finds Empirical Evidence For God
The Church Today Needs an Apologetic Culture
William Lane Craig, Richard Dawkins & the Empty Chair
Michael Brown interviews Michael Licona on the Resurrection of Jesus (MP3)
Need a great speaker/trainer for an apologetics event? I recommend J. Warner Wallace
Book Review: The Passionate Intellect: Christian Faith and the Discipleship of the Mind
Understanding Jesus: Five Ways to Spiritual Enligtenment by Peter S. Williams available for pre-order

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Alister McGrath on Why God Won't Go Away MP3 Audio

Alister McGrath presents this talk at Westminster Abbey, on the subject of his book Why God Won't Go Away: Is the New Atheism Running on Empty? This is his assessment of the state of the new atheism today. This audio is from the Abbey podcast here. More by Alister McGrath here, as well as Ap315's interview here.

Full MP3 Audio here. (30 min)
Enjoy.
[HT: Chris]

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Audio on Cults by the Centers for Apologetics Research

Looking for teaching/training in answering cults such as the Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, or the New Age? Check out the resources by the Centers for Apologetics Research. CFAR's main goal is to equip Christians in the developing world for discernment, the defense of the faith, and cult evangelism. To find out more, see here. Or check out video and articles. Here are some MP3 lectures addressing cults:

Four Dangers of Jehovah's Witnesses (59:25)
Witnessing to Mormons (42:04)
Understanding the Cults (51:03)
Understanding Mormonism (55:25)
Oneness Pentecostals (36:25)
Channeling and the Occult Explosion (40:17)
The Christian and the Masonic Lodge (40:44)
The Culting of America/Challenge of Discernment (42:21)
Answering and Evangelizing Jehovah's Witnesses (44:58)
The New Age Alien Obsession (49:18)
Ten Keys to Witnessing to the Cults (45:28)

Enjoy.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Dinesh D'Souza vs Bart Ehrman: Theodicy, God & Suffering

In this debate at Gordon College on Thursday, November 11, 2010, Dinesh D'Souza and Bart Ehrman debate the topic of: Theodicy, God and Suffering. Did Ehrman's objections carry weight? Did D'Souza provide adequate answers?

Original video can be found here.
Full Debate MP3 Audio here (1hr 42min)

Enjoy.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Apologist Interview: Stephen Bedard

Today's interview is with Stephen Bedard, pastor of Woodford Baptist Church and First Baptist Church Meaford, Ontario. He talks about his background, influences, his book Unmasking the Pagan Christ, responding to the notion that "Jesus never existed," his upcoming book responding to the Jehovah's Witness publication What Does the Bible Really Say?, the apologetics of JWs, the Hope's Reason Apologetics Journal and podcast, advice to pastors on creating an apologetic culture within the church, articulating the Gospel, apologetics and raising children, and more.

Full Interview MP3 Audio here (33 min)

Enjoy.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Sunday Quote: David K. Clark on Speaking the Truth

"To tell someone he is a sinner is speaking truth, but it can antagonize him. Driving him away by telling the truth in the wrong way and at the wrong time is hardly good communication. Effective communication must not only be true, but loving as well. It is not loving to tell a person the truth before he is ready to hear and in such a way that it produces the reverse effect."

- David K. Clark

Dialogical Apologetics, p. 209

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Book Review: The 10 Most Important Things You Can Say to a Mormon by Ron Rhodes

The 10 Most Important Things You Can Say to a MormonThe 10 Most Important Things You Can Say to a Mormon by Ron Rhodes is a small 125-page book designed to be a quick introduction and Christian response to the teachings of Mormonism. Like other introductory books by Rhodes, this one is structured for easy understanding of key doctrines of the group with a strong scriptural response. This brief review will outline the main topics covered in the ten chapters of the book, providing highlights along the way.

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