In Part 3, I promised to give an example of the totalitarian attempt to suppress religious expression in the public sphere. Here we go. Consider the HARRIS v. McRAE Supreme Court case of 1980. This case revolved around the Constitutionality of the Hyde Amendment. You will recall that Roe vs. Wade had made abortion on …
I think it goes to my larger point. Story moves. Yes, Story can move more than evidence. And yet even if that is the case, nowhere do I suggest that I think that is good! Indeed, this whole event illustrates just how unfortunate it can be when evidence is divorced from Story. Oh yes, there is a Story here. There is a Narrative. This Narrative is one that Myers and his many fans are drenched in, so much so none of them actually need evidence to know that me and my stories are [fill in your favorite pejoratives here]. The Narrative fills in the gap. It is the skeptical storyline: Christians, dumb. Christians, blind faith. Skeptics, geniuses. Skeptics, reason and evidence. Nothing more needs to be said because everyone is already agreed on how the story ends, anyway. The ‘evidence’ ends up being just a ‘literary’ flourish that adds little to the accepted Narrative.
This Narrative appears to be driving Dave’s response, though to his credit, he is exceptionally mild and measured compared to many of the other responses I observed.
Apologetics ministries tend to focus on issues such as God’s existence or the fact of the resurrection or the Bible’s reliability. These are all very important. Indeed, they bear directly on the issues at hand- for if there is no God, it obviously follows that we cannot be made by him in his image. Further, Jesus suffering, death, and resurrection on behalf of a fallen human race is an emphatic testament to how much God himself values each human life. Dispense with these, and there are ripples down the line.
There, however, is where I wish to make the point: there are ripples down the line.
Somewhere I read once that in the 1700s they went after God. In the 1800s, they went after Jesus. In the 1900s, they went after Man. The sequence is logical, rational, and predictable. One would like to think that they can dispense with God without there being practical effect, but the 1900s have shown otherwise.
Here is the part of Mark’s argument where I saw a parallel: the KSM trial won’t be a ‘show trial’ because the outcome isn’t rigged. I retorted that there was no doubt in my mind that if KSM was declared innocent, whether on the merits of the case or because of a technicality, there was no way that KSM wouldn’t end up in custody again, which is in effect an unfair trial under the constitution, for if a person is declared innocent under the constitution, he is free to go. Mark replied that what happens after the trial is irrelevant to the fairness of the trial.
I will leave aside other aspects of the conversation which you can read for yourself.
I find this to be an interesting argument that seems to be the same argument that many atheists appear to be running with when they decide that it is likely that God doesn’t exist because a loving, omnipotent and omniscient God wouldn’t allow such horrible evils to occur.
What is the alternative? Let us imagine that every time someone did an evil thing, God swooped in and prevented it. If this happened, would we imagine that that person really had free will?
Important caveat: the following is written BY A CHRISTIAN and pertains ONLY TO CHRISTIANS, and then, ONLY THE CHRISTIANS THAT TAKE THE BIBLE AS THEIR FINAL AUTHORITY. I hope that is sufficiently clear.
1 Peter 4:17: “For it is time for judgment to begin with the family of God; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?”
Sprinkled throughout the Scriptures is evidence of God’s fondness for a certain order of interaction with the human race. The idea that judgment begins with the family of God is not isolated to Peter and the idea that there are stages in judgment is not isolated to the apostles. For example, Jesus himself alludes to it in Mark 7 when he at first refuses to minister to the Syrophoenician Woman, saying, “First let the children eat all they want.”
A while back I posted a blog on the ‘Gospel according to Toy Story.’ It has generated an atheist response.
I am afraid to say the blogger needs to go back to the drawing board. He was greatly confused about what I actually said and so much of his reply just doesn’t fit what I was saying.
For example, he said that I presented Toy Story as a Christian allegory. I did no such thing. I said that it had theological themes. There is a big difference there. So, the blogger kept thinking I was trying to interpret the whole movie as some sort of intentional Christian metanarrative. This just isn’t the case. I detected one particular theme… and recognized that it was theological in nature.
This alone would shave about 8 paragraphs off his response. 🙂
That the movies end with the toys coming to terms with the fact that they are toys and finding immense satisfaction in their created purpose is one of those wholesome lessons that proves that however much Hollywood and secular humanists try, theological messages resonate. (See also Bruce Almighty and Evan Almighty)
So, are we toys?
We don’t like to think so. We would like to think that if we merely declared that we were completely independent and autonomous from any creator it would be so. We would like to think that assigning ourselves whatever value we like means that we really have that value. There is the theory and then there is the reality.
A review of Glenn Borreson’s Water for Your Soul: Living in Baptism Every Day. Available on Amazon.com Product Description WATER FOR YOUR SOUL is your spiritual invitation to experience how Christian baptism can give meaning, shape, and new excitement to your whole life as a believer. Paperback: 110 pages Publisher: Infinity Publishing (February 1, 2008) …
In the end, Shaun gets the girl, but it isn’t Shaun the wuss panzy. It’s Shaun that has gone through the trial by ordeal- and for that matter, the girl has discovered that being a girl does not mean being ‘soft’ either. I am convinced that Christianity contains the best explanation for all of this and why even though I abhor horror movies and blood and guts, I feel compelled to suggest this movie.