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Category: Jesus

It’s time to grow up and believe in Santa Claus–and Christ.

“Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house…” begins some of the most enchanting verse in American literature.  The enchantment is real, and powerful.  Clement Moore’s poem may not have started the commercialization of Christmas, but it certainly added fuel to the fire—enough, perhaps, to turn it into a raging inferno.

Yet, even for Moore’s poem to ‘catch fire’ the way it did, some kind of explanation seems warranted.  In fact, to say that Moore tapped into a powerful human current is, after all, to admit to the existence of a river for the current to flow through.  … continue reading...

Facts and the Faith Go Hand in Hand. Even the little Facts Matter

guards at tomb book cover

Anthony Horvath, PhD, is a Christian author, publisher, and apologist who works out of central Wisconsin.  Contact him at director @ athanatosministries.org.

The word for the kind of work I do is ‘apologetics.’  It is from the Greek.  Many joke:  “Does this mean you are in the business of saying you are sorry?” Very funny!  It actually means, “to make a defense.” Christian apologetics is the ‘defense of the Christian faith.’

This defense usually happens along intellectual grounds, and for some Christians that is an insult to the very idea of ‘faith.’  Obviously, it matters how we are defining our … continue reading...

Reflecting on Bitter Sufferings and Death

I’m pulling thoughts together on a pro-life presentation I’ll be giving next week and have settled on ‘suffering’ as my topic, as it is an underlying rationale to much that we call the ‘culture of death,’ but is not usually targeted directly.  By the time this little essay is done, you’ll see how ‘suffering’ and the ‘culture of death’ tend to go hand in hand, but to summarize:  when suffering is the greatest (nay, virtually the sole) unequivocal evil in one’s worldview, then one often concludes its better to die–or to kill–than to live.  This is why arguments for abortions, … continue reading...

Review: Richard Weikart’s “The Death of Humanity and the Case for Life”

In a recent post, I argued that one of the tell-tale signs of whether or not a viewpoint does not correspond with reality is whether or not it results in death; one’s own death, or the death of another, or many others.  Supposedly, humans these days are smarter than any humans that have ever existed.  We are so smart!  So smart, and yet the 20th century was one of the bloodiest on record.

I, for one, fully expect to the 21st century to be as bad or worse than the 20th century.  Dr. Richard Weikart, in his book, The continue reading...

An Unexpected Reason Why Apologetics Fails

I have been involved in Christian apologetics for a little over 20 years, with about 7 years of ‘professional’ church work under my belt. I’ve had many, many conversations with unbelievers, online and off.  Many, if not most, were not raised as atheists, but were former Christians.   We tended to focus on argument and evidence (ie, the merits or demerits of Christianity), but in many cases, it was clear this had very little to do with their falling away.  It usually had to do with some unloving thing some Christians, or perhaps their whole church, did to them, or those … continue reading...

Christmas and the Pri(n)ce of Peace

On balance, I think the Christmas holiday is a good thing.  This, despite the rampant commercialization, the secularization, and the demythologizing. This, despite ‘works righteous’ theology in which Santa only brings gifts to the ‘good boys and girls,’ which is especially ironic given that Santa is associated with a gift of God that only has value for the bad boys and girls, and is useless for the ‘good’ ones.  (Mark 2:17)  So be bad for goodness sake.

Yes, despite all that, it is clear that the holiday resonates with people near and far, of various backgrounds and ideologies, and so … continue reading...

Solving the Islamicist Problem Once and For All

Evidently the talking points are out, since I have now heard multiple individuals, especially those of Democrat persuasion, opine that ‘We have been bombing Iraq for 20 years so obviously that doesn’t work!’ Under their breath, they take a jab at GW Bush… as if he was president 20 years ago.  But it is not exclusively a liberal argument.  Another commentator made a similar statement, calling attention to the fact that the U.S. has been involved militarily in the region for decades, under both Republican and Democrat presidents.

To some degree, the point can be conceded, and the question can … continue reading...

What World War Two Online Can Teach Us About God, the Universe, and Ourselves

There comes a point in the evening when I’m totally tapped out. I hit about 10 p.m., and all I really want to do is go to bed. Unfortunately, I’ve always had trouble falling asleep. There are few things I hate more than laying on my mattress, staring at the ceiling for 2-3 hours, wishing for sleep. Others, I suppose watch TV, but I’m not much of a TV person. Reading a book or writing used to be my ‘go-to’ solutions but for at least a half decade now, my eyes glaze over and I get nowhere. Thankfully, there is … continue reading...

Pro-Life Apologetics Conference: Defending the Faith is a Defense of Life

In just a little over a week, my ministry, Athanatos Christian Ministries, will be hosting our fourth annual online apologetics conference.

Each year, we pick a theme in which apologetics is integrated and applied.  Previous years saw apologetics incorporated into the arts, etc.  This year, the theme is life issues, and abortion in particular.

One’s views about God tends to impact one’s views on Man.  It is not a coincidence that people are more likely to describe themselves as pro-life if they are a Christian and pro-choice if they are an atheist.  On the former view, people have … continue reading...

Your Beliefs are a Threat to the State Itself

Christianity has always been considered a threat to governments, because it maintains that individuals answer first and foremost to God–and by ‘individuals’ we also mean those running the governments.

Rome led things off, even going so far as to accuse Christians of being atheists, for not being willing to give sacrifices to the gods.  Just one problem:  one of those gods was the emperor himself.  Despite being the best possible citizens one could have, Christians were deemed a threat to the integrity of the state itself.  I document and discuss this thoroughly in this long treatment I wrote awhile … continue reading...

How Many Guards at the Tomb? A series of essays and ebook.

howmanyguardsEbookI have a post, simply titled “How many guards at Jesus’ tomb?” that has proved to be one of the most popular ones on this blog, drawing ten thousand visitors or so each year.  The bulk of these come during the Easter season.  I suspect that there are a lot of churches putting on Passion plays and they’re looking for some guidance on this topic (eg, how many costumes should they make for the guards, and should they be Roman costumes, or Jewish temple guard costumes?)

This year, to enhance the service that this post has evidently provided, … continue reading...

Guards at the Tomb: Were they Roman Guards or Jewish Guards?

howmanyguardsEbookCONTINUED/ADDENDUM

The following material supplements the original essay on the guards at Jesus’ tomb and provides more corroboration for various statements that were made within it.    It can be purchased as an ebook, cover to the right.   (Next section: The Discipline of the Roman Soldier )

Were they Roman Guards or Temple Guards?

 In some regards, it doesn’t matter whether the guards were Roman or Temple guards.  The mere fact that there were guards represents a real problem for those who wish to dismiss the resurrection.  If the tomb had been left unattended throughout the entire time between Jesus’ … continue reading...

Guards at the Tomb: The Discipline of the Roman Soldier

howmanyguardsEbook(this is the continuation of a series of essays discussing the number and make-up of the guards at Jesus’ tomb.  It can be purchased as an ebook, cover to the right.    Main essay | Previous section | Next section: The Romans and Jews:  So (un)Happy Together )

The Discipline of the Roman Soldier

Most acknowledge that the Roman military was very good at what it did without really looking at the details.  The concession is made easily enough because most of us learned in history class that the Romans conquered a great deal of territory, and we infer, without … continue reading...

Guards at the Tomb: The Romans and Jews: So (un)Happy Together

howmanyguardsEbook(this is the continuation of a series of essays discussing the number and make-up of the guards at Jesus’ tomb.  It can be purchased as an ebook, cover to the right.     Main essay | Previous section | Next section: Pilate Puts Jesus on Trial, the Jews put Pilate on Trial )

The Romans and Jews:  So (un)Happy Together

The region of Palestine had been conquered by one empire after another before the Romans finally took hold of it around 70 BC.  Indeed, going back even as far as the book of Exodus, we find that one of the roads … continue reading...