Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Read Along with Apologetics315!

Next week we'll be launching another weekly Read Along program. (For the past two Read Along’s, see here and here.) The goal: group book study and discussion, one chapter at a time. This will be a Thursday feature, starting on August 7, 2014. So you have one week to order your copy of the book. (Or the Kindle version.)

We'll be reading: The Gospel in the Marketplace of Ideas: Paul's Mars Hill Experience for Our Pluralistic World by Paul Copan and Kenneth D. Litwak.

This book seeks to embolden the church’s witness in today’s society by showing how Paul's speech to the Athenians (found in Acts 17) provides a practical model for Christians today. The authors encourage Christians to "be more biblically informed, culturally astute, and creatively engaged to winsomely challenge the idols of our time and to point contemporary Athenians beyond ‘an unknown God’ to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Each week an audio intro for each chapter by Paul Copan will be provided, along with a brief synopsis and study questions. You’ll also be able to connect with others readers here in the comments on Apologetics 315, or on the Christian Apologetics Alliance Facebook page. And stay tuned for more upcoming features as we read along.

Are you ready to take the Read Along challenge?
Grab the book and get ready to start Chapter One next week!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Terminology Tuesday: Simplicity

Simplicity: Two senses: (1) hard-to-describe but desirable lack of complexity in scientific theories; (2) the divine attribute of being completely unified and having no distinct parts. In philosophy of science, it is widely accepted that scientists choose among a plurality of theories equally consistent with the facts on the basis of simplicity, though there is little agreement as to what counts as simplicity. The criterion of simplicity is also employed in other fields epistemologically. For example, some theologians argue that thinking of God's knowledge and power as infinite is preferable because it is simpler that the attribution of some finite, but arbitrary, amount of power and knowledge to God. In theology simplicity is one of the more mysterious of the properties attributed to God by the medieval Scholastics, since it seems to imply that no distinction can be drawn between God's existence and his essence, between his will and his intellect, or indeed among any of his properties.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 107.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Sunday Quote: Francis Bacon on Study

"Let no one think or maintain that a person can search too far or be too well studied in either the book of God's word or the book of God's works."

- Francis Bacon

Friday, July 25, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (07/18 - 07/25)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

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For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Matt Slick Interview Transcript

The following transcript is from an Apologetics 315 interview with Matt Slick. Original audio here. Transcript index here. If you enjoy transcripts, please consider supporting, which makes this possible.

BA: Hello, this is Brian Auten, of Apologetics 315. Today’s interview is with Matthew Slick of the Christian Apologetics Research Ministry, more popularly known as CARM, found at www.carm.org.
Matt started CARM in October of 1995 to respond to many of the false teachings of the cults on the internet, when it first began. Now it has grown to be one of the largest apologetics resources online. Matt hosts Faith and Reason Radio, week nights in the Boise area and on the internet and that is also podcasted as the CARM Radio Program.
The purpose of our interview today is to get to know a little bit more about Matt, his ministry with CARM, and gain some insights into his experience in apologetics on the internet. So thanks for speaking with me today, Matt.

MS: No problem Brian.

BA: Now would you mind telling our listeners a little bit more about yourself and how you got into apologetics.

MS: Well, let’s see. I’m 53 years old and I went to a Lutheran college and a Presbyterian seminary and I was a Pastor in the Presbyterian Church in America, Assistant Pastor in the CRC (the Christian Reformed Church). I’m a Five Point Calvinist, if that matters; it doesn’t really to me. Let’s see – I have a wife and kids and live in Idaho. I can tell you how tall I am but I don’t think that is going to be relevant.

BA: Now what got you started into doing apologetics and how did you get started with CARM and starting that ministry online.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Terminology Tuesday: Logical Positivism

Logical Positivism: Philosophical movement arising out of the Vienna Circle of philosophers in Austria after World War I. Logical positivism combined the commitment to empiricism found in nineteenth-century positivism (Comte) with the type of logical analysis found in the work of Bertrand Russell. It affirmed a verifiability theory of meaning, in which nonanalytic propositions have cognitive meaning only if they are empirically verifiable. On the basis of this theory, logical positivists asserted metaphysical and theological propositions to be meaningless, and they analyzed ethical propositions as merely having expressive meaning.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 70.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sunday Quote: Francis Schaeffer on Truth

"If Christianity is really true, then it involves the whole man, including his intellect and creativeness. Christianity is not just 'dogmatically' true or 'doctrinally' true. Rather, it is true to what is there, true in the whole area of the whole man in all of life."

- Francis Schaeffer

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Book Review: Navigating Genesis: A Scientist's Journey through Genesis 1-11 by Hugh Ross

Reviewer's Introduction
I was introduced to astrophysicist Dr. Hugh Ross (president of Reasons to Believe) in the early 90's but did not really begin investigating his model of origins until the mid 2000's when my view of origins and my Christian worldview was beginning to be challenged by observations of scientists in many different disciplines. I was hit by the higher critics who wished to interpret Genesis in a metaphorical (and not historical) light. Some of their points seemed valid, but others were questionable. I found Dr. Ross' approach of integrating all of Scripture with all the sciences quite intellectually attractive. It offered the possibility to reconcile the findings of modern science and the research of the higher critics with the Genesis accounts. However, before I was willing to change my view of origins from young-earth (universe is 6,000 - 10,000 years old), despite the observational evidence, I had to see a proper interpretive treatment of the Genesis accounts of creation that recognized them as historical events, granted the poetic writing style, understood the ancient cultural context, and consistently preserved all the essentials of Christian theology (including original sin and Christ's atonement). All those requirements have been satisfied, and Navigating Genesis: A Scientist's Journey Through Genesis 1-11 shows how it is accomplished through a careful examination of the Genesis accounts.

This review is a chapter-by-chapter summary, so it is lengthy. But it will give the reader a taste of the range of content in the book. This review, by no means, is a substitute for reading the book as it contains much more content in higher detail than what I have presented here.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (07/11 - 07/18)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

Get these sorts of links and more by following on Twitter.
For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

Bobby Conway Interview Transcript

The following transcript is from an Apologetics 315 interview with Bobby Conway. Original audio here. Transcript index here. If you enjoy transcripts, please consider supporting, which makes this possible.

BA: Hello, this is Brian Auten of Apologetics315. Today’s interview is with Bobby Conway. Bobby is the Lead Pastor of Life Fellowship in Charlotte, North Carolina. He is also the founder of the One Minute Apologist, a creative YouTube ministry designed to give quick answers to curious questions. He is also author of the book, Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die. The purpose of this interview is to learn a bit more about Bobby and his ministry, explore the use of multi-media and apologetics, look at apologetics in the church, and get his advice for those studying apologetics. Well, thanks for joining me for this interview Bobby.

BC: Well, it’s great to be with you Brian, thank you for having me on today.

BA: Well, I appreciate you being with me today, and would you mind telling our listeners a bit about the sort of ministry you’re in today?

BC: You bet. I’m actually, first and foremost, I serve as the Lead Pastor of Life Fellowship Church, a church that I started about eight years ago in the Charlotte area. I’m also involved in doing some marriage conferences with Family Life Today. My wife and I speak on the national Weekend to Remember speakers team. But, the reason I’m on with you today is for a ministry I do called The One Minute Apologist, which is a video ministry that I put together a few years back that we’re real exited about.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/27 - 07/04)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

Get these sorts of links and more by following on Twitter.
For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Terminology Tuesday: Pluralism

Religious Pluralism: Descriptively, a situation characterized by a number of alternative religions and diverse perspectives on religion, with the resulting problem for adherents of each view of what attitude to take toward the other views. The contemporary world is in most places undeniably pluralistic in this sense. However, for some, the term pluralism has taken on a normative sense in which it implies an endorsement of this plurality and a refusal to see one religion as truer than others or superior to others in any way.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 93.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Book Review: God, Freedom, and Evil by Alvin Plantinga

In God, Freedom, and Evil Alvin Plantinga (AP) attempts to rebut the logical problem of evil [i], which posits that the following two propositions [i] are inconsistent:

(1) God (an omnipotent and perfectly good being) exists
(2) Evil exists

Where is the Inconsistency? 
AP spends the first section of the book attempting to demonstrate an inconsistency between the two premises. He argues that (1) and (2) are neither explicitly nor formally [ii] contradictory, and (following J. L. Mackie) decides that the most promising course for the atheologian [iii] is that the propositions are implicitly contradictory. A set of premises is implicitly contradictory if one or more of the terms violates a logically necessary truth. What the atheologian is looking for, then, in pressing the logical problem of evil is a necessary truth which, when added to (1) and (2) above, yields a contradiction.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/20 - 06/27)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

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For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Terminology Tuesday: Supererogation

Supererogation: Supererogation is the technical term for the class of actions that go “beyond the call of duty.” Roughly speaking, supererogatory acts are morally good although not (strictly) required. [...] The Latin etymology of “supererogation” is paying out more than is due (super-erogare), and the term first appears in the Latin version of the New Testament in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Although we often believe that Good Samaritanism is praiseworthy and non-obligatory at the same time, philosophical reflection raises the question whether there can be any morally good actions that are not morally required, and even if there are such actions, how come they are optional or supererogatory. (more here) 1

Friday, June 20, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/13 - 06/20)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

Get these sorts of links and more by following on Twitter.
For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Terminology Tuesday: Confucianism

Confuciansim: Chinese school of ethical, political and religious teachings commonly attributed to Confucius (c. 551-479 B.C.). Confucianism places great weight on the cultivation of ethical virtues such as kingliness, humaneness and gentlemanliness that are cultivated through rituals. Ethical duties within Confucianism depend on one's social and family position. There is some dispute over the religious character of Confucianism, centering on the nature of tian, or "heaven," which is in some way the ground of our ethical duties. Some have interpreted this concept in a transcendent, metaphysical way, while neo-Confucians tend to think of "heaven" as a metaphorical way of describing the natural ethical order of things.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 26.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (06/06 - 06/13)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

Get these sorts of links and more by following on Twitter.
For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Terminology Tuesday: Virtue

Virtue: A disposition or character trait that is itself an excellence or good or that tends to lead to what is good, with moral virtues being those excellences that foster human flourishing. In ancient and medieval philosophy ethical thinking centered on the virtues - what they are, how they are related and how they are to be achieved. The medievals accepted the cardinal virtues of the ancient world (wisdom, justice, courage, temperance) and added to them the three principle Christian virtues (faith, hope and love). Both ancient and medieval thinkers tied their account of the virtues as leading to human flourishing to accounts of human nature. Recent ethical theory has seen a rediscovery of the importance of the virtues and the development of virtue theory, which holds that concepts of the virtues are basic to ethics and not reducible to claims about moral duties or what is impersonally valuable.1

1. C.Stephen Evans, Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2002), p. 121.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Ticket Giveaway: Unbelievable Conference 2014

Premier Christian Radio and Biola University present an apologetics day conference on Sat, 12 July 2014 in London. This year's conference will help ordinary Christians like you be equipped to:
• Be confident in your faith and share it effectively
• Engage with atheism, Islam and other worldviews
• Give good reasons for God and the truth of Christianity


Apologetics 315 is giving away some FREE TICKETS.
ENTER THE DRAWING HERE.

Sign up here.

Friday, June 06, 2014

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (05/30 - 06/06)

Here are this week's recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.
• Shopping via Amazon? If you use this link, a bit of your purchase goes to fund Apologetics 315. Thanks for those of you using the link, as it helps Ap315.
Canada here. UK here.

• Would you like to help with interview transcriptionIf so, contact Ap315 here.

Get these sorts of links and more by following on Twitter.
For daily post links, please follow on Facebook.

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