Friday, November 10, 2006

Mind renewal

Tough thinking for beginners
I have recently started a biblestudy series for beginners in the faith. It took me a while to get started as I wanted to do it differently this time; get it right. The series I developed this time (and that is still under development) is actually very tough. Instead of getting right away into the scriptures to analyze the message of salvation I decided to do a bit of culture engagement, i.e. to address issues non-christians bring up during conversations like: why the Bible? Is there a God? etc. Apologetics precedes biblestudy I thought.

After giving the first study I was a bit apprehensive about the results but not in the least doubtful in my opinion that such philosophical questions and their answers from a Christian viewpoint are important.

Yesterday at the beginning of the second meeting I found my audience very excited. Yes they found it hard stuff, but did not find it odd that even a 'beginners' biblestudy deals with the heart of the matter at hand. One of them used whatever little apologetics I provided in his classroom to defend his newly found faith over against the entire group, and succesfully!

All of this has confirmed my resolve to bring hard thinking back to the pulpit. The way I see it revitilization of the church (which is something of a prerequisite to revival) needs two components:

(A) An earnest searching of the Lord to restore ALL the gifts of the Holy Spirit to the church. This entails perseverance in sanctification, prayer and fasting. Let's take Jesus' words for real for once.

(B) A lifelong quest for intellectual excellence, like Groothuis, JP Moreland and others advocate. This will be fed by four things: (1) A realization that all creation is God's creation and thus points to Him. (2) A dedication to the reality of the historicity of the NT. (3) That faith in God is not an existential leap in the dark but the logical consequence of hard and honest thinking. (4) Good arguments for the case of God take people by surprise, because they don't expect Christians to have a coherent worldview that bears on reality.

Labels: ,

2 Comments:

Blogger Fletcher said...

Yossman:

I'm glad to see that you are engaging the minds of believers so that they can witness Christ to people and at the same time thoughfully and effectively respond to skeptics' questions through solid apologetic training. Unbelievers are very surprised by the thoughtful and studied Christian. Apologetics is an utterly necessary tool in today's media saturated relativistic age.

It's also great to see that you are a Dutch Christian art director. How cool is that? During trips to Holland I have found (at least in Amsterdam) that many churches have been converted to Art Museums. It seems to be a very Godless place to me, that's why I was encouraged by your profile. Keep it up, for Christ's sake.

PS - I live in Colorado and am a friend of Groothuis (that's how I found your blog).

9:44 PM  
Blogger P-Style said...

Yoss,

Great post. Just discovered your blog after linking from "not PC" here in New Zealand.

Ptyle

8:30 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home