Learning to Discern#3. “Open to Debate.”

Learning to Discern#3. “Open to Debate.”

I was introduced to John Clayton’s “Does God Exist?” material early in my Christian walk. Listening to his cassette tape lectures was an enjoyable experience—until he presented his theories on “Theistic Evolution.”

He did not convince me that God used a Darwinian Evolution model to create the world, but he did let me know that varying views of Creation existed in the Lord’s church.

At Bible College, Howard Scott introduced me to Josh McDowell’s book, “Evidence that demands a verdict.” Howard did an excellent job of keeping McDowell’s debate-theme alive. McDowell can be hard work, but he is worth every minute of reading.

I recommend that you brace yourself when considering the “Does God exist?” debates, in their various forms, on the Internet. There are many to consider, both good and bad.

Richard Dawkins has become an obvious champion amongst his fellow Atheists. I do try to listen with great care. However, I lose respect for Dawkins when he descends into the abyss of mockery. When asked to explain “life’s purpose” in light of evolutionary thought, he dismisses the question as meaningless. He retorts: “That’s a silly question. It’s like asking, ‘What is the colour of jealousy?’” In a similar vein, Bill Nye openly accuses Creationists of being incapable of educating their children properly. At that point, debate is dead!

Atheists have not cornered the market when it comes to emotionally wrecking debates. It could be argued that Christians have shied away from any form of public or private debate for the sole reason of avoiding ‘tears.’

Obviously, care must be taken to avoid hurt; where and how things are discussed calls for wisdom.

My point being that leaving disagreements over aspects of faith and service unanswered is to block off a vital avenue of spiritual growth.

The Lord’s church must be open to debate on all aspects of Christ’s teachings. We must pray that God gives us discerning minds and open hearts as we search out the scriptures amidst disagreement or confusion.

It will make us stronger!

John Staiger


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