Tag Archives: Apologetics

Apologetics Program

ARS Apologetics Certificate Program with John Oakes on http://evidenceforchristianity.org/ars-apologetics-certificate-program

>>>> archive ♥ amazon ♥ itunes ♥ google-feedpaypal >>>>

Many of us have not noticed it.  The fact is that we are now living in a post-Christian age and in a post-Christian culture.  No longer can we assume that people we talk to know anything about the Bible or the Christian God.

The faith have been bombarded with negative, stereotyped ideas about religion coming from the mass media.  How can we share our faith in Jesus with a person who has no basis at all for belief that God exists?  How can we establish the inspiration of the Bible for people who do not even understand the concept of authority?  How are we going to explain Christian faith in a postmodern world which has abandoned the idea of truth?

Clearly, the solution is not simply to read a passage of scripture and let it do its work.  We need to understand the world view of the unreligious and those of other faiths.  We need to explain Christianity in ways that connect with the modern mind.  We need to repair the defensive posture of the Christian world toward the findings of modern science.

Paul modeled this behavior when he gave his apologetic argument to the Greeks in Athens.  In Acts 17 we find Paul discoursing with the Greek philosophers taking illustrations from the Stoics and the Epicureans and applying it to belief in the one true God.  We need people trained to do the same thing in our own modern versions of the Areopagus.

Curriculum for Certificate in Christian Apologetics:

1.  Intro to Christian Apologetics: The Existence of God.
a. The Need for Christian Apologetics
b. History of Chrisitan Apologetics
c. Approaches to Apologetics
d. Atheist arguments against the existence of God
e. Why Atheism fails
f. Classical theistic arguments
g. The Nature of God
Instructors: Dr. Douglas Jacoby, Dr. John Oakes

2.  Inspiration of the Bible I/Authority
a.  Inspiration, Inerrancy, Definitions and defense.
b. Supposed contradictions of fact and doctrine.
c. Consistency and unity of the Bible as a whole.
d. The Bible is the greatest book of….
e.  How We Got the Bible, Canon of OT, NT
Instructor:  Dr. John Oakes

3. Inspiration of Bible II  The Bible and Textual Criticism
a.  History of Biblical Criticism
b. Textual Criticism, Form Criticism, etc…
c. Response and defense of the unity and inspiration of the Bible.
Instructor:  Glenn Giles

4.  Science and God/Science and the Bible.
a. Age of earth/universe.
b. Creation of life.
c. Anthropic Principle/Intelligent Design
d. Biological and human evolution.
e. The flood and “flood geology.”
f. Science and the Bible.
g. Science and other religions.
Instructor:  Dr. John Oakes

5.  Prophecy and Christian Apologetics
a. Messianic Prophecies
b. Kingdom Prophecies
c. Old Testament Prophecies fulfilled in the Old Testament
d. Old Testament Prophecies fulfilled between the Testaments and in the New Testament (especially Daniel)
e. Types, foreshadows and prefigures
Instructor:  Dr. John Oakes

6. Apologetics and the Christian World View.
a. Greek world views:  Paul in Athens.
b. Eastern religions: Pantheism
c. Naturalism, Scientific Materialism
d. Postmodernism.
e. Other World Views
f. The Christian worldview.
Instructor:  Dr. Robert Kurka

7.  History, Archaeology and the Bible.
a. World History and the Old Testament.
b. Old Testament archaeology.
c. New Testament archaeology.
Instructors:  Dr. John Wilson, Dr. Douglas Jacoby, Foster Stanback, Dr. John Oakes

8.  Jesus and Christian Apologetics/Miracles
a. The deity of Jesus.
b. Liar, Lord, Lunatic, Legend.
c. Claims of Jesus.
d. The historical Jesus
e. Response to the Jesus myth hypothesis
f. Science and miracles.
g. OT miracles
h. The miracles of Jesus
i. Incarnation, Resurrection and Ascension of Jesus
Instructors:  Dr. John Oakes (guest lecturer: Foster Stanback)

9.  World Religions.
a. Scope of the topic.
b. Greek and other classical religious concepts.
c. Eastern Religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikkhism, Jaina
d. New Age, Bahai
e. Islam
f. Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witness and other pseudo-Christian religions.
Instructor:  Dr. John Oakes, Dan Conder

10.  Defense of Biblical Theology: Answering the Hard Questions
a. The trinity
b. The problem of evil.
c. The problem of pain and suffering.
d. Predestination and free will
e. The problem of hell
f. The Problems of violence and slavery in the Old Testament
Instructor: Dr. John Oakes

Classes available for immediate shipment:
1. Prophecy and Christian Apologetics.
2. Science and Christian Apologetics.
3. Apologetics and the Christian World View.
Classes available as of Jan. 2011:
1. Jesus and Christian Apologetics
2. Apologetics and World Religions
3. Apologetics and Biblical Criticism

For more information or to register for any of the available classes, contact Jan Oakes at joakes01@san.rr.com or 858-505-8841.   Sign up today!

Ecology

R4E130717 – Ecology by Douglas Jacoby

You can download the full audiobook recording on qobuz or amazon or itunes.

1. What’s ecology?
Ecology is a study of the relationships between organisms and the environments in which they live. The earth comprises many ecosystems, each delicately balanced. Over-farming, air pollution, water pollution, over-hunting and so on can have drastic consequences, such as the extinction of species, severe erosion, and dangerous spikes in greenhouse gases.

2. How do humans relate to nature?
Where do we as humans fit into the scheme of things? Genesis 1-2 (esp. 1:26-27, 2:7) indicate our natural origins (“day six” creation along with the other beasts, made from dirt). Yet there is also a divine origin, and humans are tasked with bearing (or being) the divine image. (This is not “speciesism”!) Thus we are in both worlds. We should be honored to be God’s children, yet humbled by our earthly origins.

3. What duties, or obligations, if any, do humans have toward the natural world?
According to Genesis 1:26,28, 2:15; Psalm 8:6; and many other passages, and in line with extensive Judaeo-Christian reflection on passages such as Luke 16:12, 19:17; 1 Corinthians 4:2 we have a responsibility to care for the creation. That is, ecology is part of spirituality. One clear example of ecological responsibility is the Sabbath principle in agriculture (Exodus 23:10; Leviticus 26:34-35; 2 Chronicles 36:21).

4. What about the Green movement?
This does not work if there is no God, or if, as many New Age thinkers opine, we are only part of nature. For in that case what argument could be made that we shouldn’t trash the planet, kill the weak, commit adultery, and so forth? With biblical monotheism there is a warrant for ecology; without it, such talk turns out to be mere smoke of opinion. Either we are only part of nature (like the other animals, and thus without moral responsibility), or we somehow transcend nature, as Scripture says (and thus are responsible for our ethics — environmental, familial, business, sexual, social, etc). This the Green movement falls for short, for it fails to achieve the insight that this is God’s world. (Psalm 104 powerfully attests to this fact.)

5. But isn’t it all going to burn?
Whether or not the fire of 2 Peter 3:10 is taken literally does not matter, since the Lord tells us to care for his creation (now) and to expect — in some sense we can only dimly grasp — a new creation at the end (2 Peter 3:13). Dismissive attitudes like “Our planet will indefinitely renew itself,” or “All I care about is my standard of living, not whether my company poisons the water,” or “Why does it matter, if everything’s gonna burn?” should not be found among those who fear God and believe his word.

6. What’s the vision?
As believers in the scriptures, we should all embrace the biblical vision of a creation released from its “bondage to decay” (Romans 8:18-22).

7. What should we do?

  • Strive to develop ecological sensitivity.
  • Talk about environmental issues.
  • Recycle.
  • Take ownership of the creation. We are not only stewards; in a sense, we are “gardeners.”
  • Don’t litter — ever.
  • Ask your “green” friends why ecology matters if there’s no God, and explain why ecology follows naturally from the mandate of Genesis 1.
  • Appreciate nature: enjoy the great outdoors, read works in the natural sciences, be awed by the creation.
  • Perhaps take a peek at Rolston’s interesting article.