Thinking is Either Based on Made-Up Stuff or Divine Revelation
When people go beyond what God has revealed, the only option is making stuff up.
Scientists learn through observation. However, they can’t repeatedly observe or test the past. This fact drives evolutionists nuts, so they come up with weird rationalizations to try to get around this. They’ll say, “When we look into the sky, we’re looking into the past.” Well, that MIGHT be true, but we can’t test the one-way speed of light. But let’s pretend, for a moment, that we are looking into the past. We still can’t observe the animals being made. We still can’t observe the earth being formed. We still can’t observe the universe coming into existence. Those are stories and they either consist of divine revelation or made-up stuff. God has revealed some detail about these events, but we don’t have a way to go beyond what God reveals and still be sane.
Science works quite well when it leads to a product that we can test. For instance, science leads to a cell phone. The cell phone either works, or it doesn’t. We can also extrapolate, but then we start adding to the words that Jesus is saying through what we observe and experience. Extrapolation adds information to what Jesus is saying. That information ultimately comes from one of three places. What we can’t sense from our natural senses comes either from our own imagination, demonic influence, or divine revelation. As Christ said, “Those who are on the side of truth listen to Me.” And He said, “My sheep hear My voice.” Scientists do get information beyond what they observe.
Even ungodly scientists who don’t know Christ get information beyond what they observe, and they can get it from these three sources. That is, God reveals natural and spiritual truth to every person through the things that they observe in His creation. (Romans 1) For instance, He reveals Himself and everything that we can know about Him and the Godhead through His creation. We accept parts of what He reveals. We reject other parts. Sometimes we acknowledge Him and give Him the glory. Sometimes we fail to acknowledge Him and glorify Him. Some people always fail to acknowledge Him and glorify Him.
Some people try to extrapolate from what God has revealed through Scripture and His creation. They try to guess about amazing speculations such as the method by which God created all things or the specific nature of the image of God. We’ll fully understand how God created all things one day. We’ll fully understand the nature of God. Now, we do know that God is working all things together for His good purpose. His purpose is that we be formed into the image of His Son. (Romans 8:28) We know that as we all, with the fleshly veil removed from our eyes, look at the glory of the Lord as if looking into a mirror, are transfigured into the same image from glory to glory by the Holy Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:18) We may not be able to comprehend the greatness of that yet, but we can already sense and experience the transforming power of the Holy Spirit.
The Reason Collection will be out soon. Watch for it. This five-volume set contains two reference texts and three additional books. It’s over 1,000 pages 8.5 inches X 11 inches with full-color images, so the print version will be fairly expensive regardless of how hard Petros tries to keep the cost down. Petros has agreed to allow us to distribute the eBook free. That’s a tremendous addition to your library. Keep your eyes open for it as we don’t have a definite release date yet.
A chain of thought is only as strong as its weakest link.
We can know the truth since Jesus is available, and whoever seeks Him finds Him.
Jesus isn’t a theory, concept, or theology. He’s real, and He speaks through Scripture and every means mentioned in Scripture.
The ungodly have no path to a true premise or sound reasoning, but what God reveals is true, and He’s well able to impart certainty to those who listen to Him in submission.
I think this set of books will turn the world upside-down because it takes the rules of logic seriously—rules that the whole world has been ignoring for millennia.
You can know for certain that Jesus Christ is real, is good, and is your Savior.
You can know for certain that the Bible is God’s word without error.
We can know that Christ is God, and the Bible is true, but no path to rational thought exists without Christ.
We can know for certain that Christ is God, and the Bible is true, but ungodly thinkers can’t know anything for certain.
As a follower of Christ, you can be fully rational as long as you never go beyond what God reveals, but ungodly thinkers can’t be rational to discuss anything beyond the information that comes from their five senses.
We could discuss origins and debate continually without coming to a final conclusion. There is no silver bullet in this argument. Note how dogmatic those who oppose your own position can be. They don’t quit no matter what you say. One of the problems is that science is inductive rather than deductive. The answers of science are never absolute. There’s no such thing as settled science since tomorrow’s discovery could overturn today’s opinion. And yet, we can use science if the science actually produces a product that we can test. Origins science doesn’t produce products we can test.
I’m not concerned with knowledge if it’s not knowledge of the truth. Truth is absolute and exclusive by nature. It’s reality itself. It’s very different from opinion. There are two ways we can reason. We can reason based on presuppositions/assumptions/made-up stuff, or we can reason based on divine revelation.
God speaks through Scripture and every means mentioned in Scripture. For instance, He speaks through His creation as we see in Romans one. But He also says not to add to His words, or He’ll expose us as liars. Why? Because there are two possible foundations for reason. One is divine revelation with nothing added. The other is made-up stuff by whatever name we call the made-up stuff.
Axioms consist of made-up stuff that is so much a part of our worldviews that we think they’re obvious. And yet we can’t observe them. They aren’t divine revelation.
I’m learning to discern God’s voice. I’m learning to discern the difference between His voice and my own voice or all the other voices in the world. Christ leads every person who follows Him. He leads us moment by moment in every situation. We hear His voice, but we have trouble with discernment right now. We need to seek His face and turn all our hardened beliefs over to Him. Hold tightly to Him and hold our theories and theologies loosely. He’s the only source of truth, so only in Him can we think rationally. Without that, we’re at the level of brute beasts as the apostle Jude said.
So, I seek Him and His righteousness. If you don’t have that relationship with Him in which He leads, teaches, and corrects you moment by moment in every situation, I invite you to know Him in this way. Everyone who seeks Him finds Him. He won’t give a serpent to the one who asks for a fish. If you seek Christ, you’ll get Christ. He’ll then begin leading you into all truth just as He’s leading all who humble themselves before Him. If you already have that relationship, I want to encourage you to continue to allow Him to take you to higher heights and deeper depths in Him.
My scientific colleagues go to places like Greenland, the Arctic. They go to Antarctica. And they drill into this ice with hollow drill bits. It’s not that extraordinary. Many of you have probably done it yourselves, drilling other things, hole saws to put locks in doors for example. And we pull out long cylinders of ice, long ice rods. And these are made of snow. And, by long tradition, it’s called snow ice. And snow ice forms over the winter as snowflakes fall and are crushed down by subsequent layers, they’re crushed together, entrapping the little bubbles, and the little bubbles must needs be the ancient atmosphere. There’s nobody running around with a hypodermic needle, you know, squirting ancient atmosphere into the bubbles, and we find certain of these cylinders to have 680,000 layers. 680,000 snow winter-summer cycles. How could it be that just 4,000 years ago all of this ice formed? Let’s just run some numbers. This is some scenes from lovely Antarctic. Let’s say we have 680,000 layers of snow ice and 4,000 years since the great Flood. That would mean we would need 170 winter-summer cycles every year for the last 4,000 years. I mean, wouldn’t someone have noticed that? [laughing] Wow! [laughing] Wouldn’t someone have noticed that there’s been winter-summer-winter-summer 170 times one year? Six-hundred-eighty-thousand years of snow ice layers, which require winter-summer cycle. ~ Bill Nye
This argument is easy to handle since it depends on three assumptions, and the first two assumptions are hidden assumptions. First is the assumption that there was no Genesis Flood. Second is the assumption that the earth is billions of years old. Of course, Bill is trying to prove those two assumptions, so those assumptions are the basis for a form of circular reasoning known as begging the question. In other words, Bill is assuming the conclusion to prove the conclusion.
Bill also assumes that one ring in the ice is one year, and this assumption fits in with the first two hidden assumptions. This assumption is like the tree-ring-per-year fallacy since it doesn’t work this way in real life. In real life, a single large storm can make many rings in the ice, and we can observe this fact.
Using knowledge of proved formulas gathered from scientific testing, scientists have created models of the Genesis Flood. And they’ve used those models to calculate that the Genesis Flood would have caused many violent storms per year. The storms would have caused many rings. Bill may not have been aware of this scientific research. Ungodly scientists usually insulate themselves from information that might conflict with what they already believe. Of course, no model or theory can prove anything. They just present ideas to consider.
Another important piece of evidence that Bill also left out is the evidence of the Lost Squadron. In July of 1942, Americans abandoned a squadron of P-38 Lightening airplanes in Greenland after making an emergency landing. Then, fifty years later, in May of 1992, a salvage crew went back for the planes and found that the planes were under 75 meters (250 feet) of ice in just 50 years. From this observation, we can calculate the age of the ice cores Bill Nye mentioned by comparing the depth of the planes (75 meters) to the depth of ice in the ice cores (3,000 meters).
The planes were there 50 years and were 75 meters deep, which means that every 75 meters of depth represents 50 years.
3,000 meters is 40 times as deep as 75 meters.
3,000 meters / 75 meters = 40 times as deep
40 X 50 years = 2,000 years
Using assumptions, Bill Nye calculated an age for the ice cores of 680,000 years, but using observation of the P-38 Lightening airplanes, we calculate an age for the ice cores of 2,000 years. We must admit that both calculations use assumptions, so neither one provides real knowledge. The only way we can know that the Genesis Creation and Flood both occurred is by divine revelation.
This post is adapted from a book called “Exposing the Nye-Ham Debate.” That book will be included in the soon-to-be-released boxed set called “The Reason Collection.” Real Reality, Inc. will have rights to distribute and promote the ebook and audiobook versions of The Reason Collection, and it will be free. Because of the amount of research material in The Reason Collection, the print version will be fairly pricey, but many may want a copy for their libraries.
The following is taken from the book “Exposing the Nye-Ham Debate,” which is one of five books that will be included in “The Reason Collection” by Petros Scientia. The debate ended with a question and answer session in which the audience was allowed to ask questions of both Bill Nye and Ken Ham. That session revealed much about the difference between the way evolutionists and creationists reason.
To illustrate the fallacy of loaded questions, we need only observe the dramatic difference in the quality of questions in the Q & A session. These were questions from the audience, and some challenged Bill Nye, while some challenged Ken Ham. We want to notice a tendency. Those participants who questioned Bill Nye asked straightforward questions, but those who questioned Ken Ham asked questions loaded with emotion and presuppositions. We also notice this same pattern in online discussions. This difference is inevitable since people who think rationally don’t use fallacies. Those who think irrationally use fallacies. How different for ungodly thinkers who must always base all thinking on fallacies! We see this when we look at the following questions from the Q & A session:
Question to Ken
How does creationism account for the celestial bodies: planets, stars, moons moving further and further apart, and what function does that serve in the grand design?
That’s a loaded question. The questioner presupposes that everything is moving further apart. This presupposition commits the hysteron proteron fallacy. The conclusion that everything is moving further apart is an interpretation of observation based on assumptions, but if we change the assumptions, we change the conclusion. The questioner also embedded the loaded word “creationism” into the question. Do we ever hear evolutionists mention the word “evolutionism?” The second part of the question also is irrational since it asks Ken to read God’s Mind and to understand God’s wisdom and plan completely.
It’s always possible to dream up a question that someone can’t answer. Debates usually have each debater asking questions to stump the other debater. They probably think they’re masters of debate, but they’re just asking ad ignorantiam questions. Ad ignorantiam is irrational thinking, but it works for politicking. And since debates aren’t usually about finding truth but rather about swaying opinions, debaters use fallacies such as ad ignorantiam to sway opinions. Ken had no problem answering this question or any other question, but Bill had a problem answering the same question.
There’s nothing wrong with asking questions. For instance, we ask questions to understand the basis of another person’s thinking. We ask questions to point out that a claim doesn’t have a basis in a true premise. Again, we need a true premise (only available by divine revelation) for rational thought. In this case, Ken bases his understanding of the Creation event on a true premise. God gives Ken this premise by divine revelation through Ken’s relationship with Jesus Christ and what Jesus Christ tells Ken through Scripture and science.
Question to Bill
How did the atoms that created the big bang get there?
That was a straightforward question to explore the foundation of Bill’s case, and Bill couldn’t answer, yet Bill sold his inability to answer as if it were a benefit. In this case, Bill bases his understanding of the big bang story on knowing how to account for such details as the origin of the supposed big bang. Therefore, this question is legitimate. Bill claims that the big bang story is science, and since this question hits this exact point, it’s not a red herring. In contrast, in the previous question to Ken, the audience member asked Ken to speculate about God’s purpose for spreading out the heavens. However, Ken doesn’t base his understanding of the Creation event on knowing such details. Ken bases his understanding of the Creation event on divine revelation. So, the previous question to Ken was a red herring.
Ken pointed out that the Bible does have the answer to this question, but no one can answer the question from ungodly science. Bill couldn’t answer. But Bill’s inability to answer doesn’t disprove the big bang story. The fact that Bill couldn’t answer should make Bill reconsider his dogmatic stance since the question reveals the lack of substance in his belief, though. Bill can’t prove the big bang story since the story runs into a limited depth fallacy and a limited scope fallacy. Of course, divine revelation disproves the big bang story.
Question to Ken
The overwhelming majority of people in the scientific community have presented valid physical evidence, such as carbon dating and fossils, to support evolutionary theory. What evidence, besides the literal word of the Bible, supports creationism?
This questioner asked a loaded question with an embedded and presupposed bandwagon fallacy. The question also contains the loaded words “literal” and “creationism.”
Both evolutionists and creationists use the same observations. Scientists presuppose the validity of carbon dating. They don’t prove it.
The claimed “valid physical evidence” is presupposed, phantom evidence. However, this so-called “valid physical evidence” consists of confusion between interpretation and observation. True evidence must prove the conclusion without the need to add any information to the evidence. Of course, the way ungodly science uses the word “evidence,” it’s a waffling word that’s used to confuse.
Question to Bill
How did consciousness come from matter?
That was a straightforward question to the root of Bill’s case, which Bill couldn’t answer even though his entire dogmatic belief system demands an answer to this question.
Question to Ken
What, if anything, would ever change your mind?
That’s a vague question that also implies that Ken has a closed mind or dogmatism on some unstated issue, yet the questioner didn’t specify the change of mind. Change his mind about what? Possibilities would include:
- Ken changing his mind about the reality of Ken’s experience with Christ
- Ken changing his mind about believing Christ as He reveals the validity of scriptural history
- Ken changing his mind about rejecting one of the specific stories of the ungodly historical narrative
Ken confessed his belief in Christ and belief in the authority of Scripture, a belief that he bases on divine revelation. However, Ken denied dogmatic belief in theologies and theories. He said that he’s flexible on any models that go beyond what God reveals through Scripture. In contrast to Ken’s open mind, Ken pointed out that Bill admits dogmatic belief in billions of years.
As followers of Christ, we can be fully confident in exposing all of our beliefs to examination and challenge. Hopefully, we do that before Christ every day since His absolute truth can destroy the deceptive strongholds in our minds. So if someone asks us what would change our minds, we can answer that absolute proof against it would change our minds. Absolute proof would change our minds about what we currently believe that God says through Scripture about the history of the universe. Of course, we wouldn’t accept any so-called “proof” that contained made-up stuff since that wouldn’t be proof. We wouldn’t accept assumptions, stories, concepts, ideas, or mental constructs as proof. In other words, the Holy Spirit would need to reveal it to us.
On the other hand, never be afraid to ask an ungodly person about the basis of their beliefs in molecules-to-humanity evolution, billions of years, or atheism. Probe to find something solid and immovable in their answers. You never need to fear drawing them out and getting to the basis of their beliefs. You’ll always find that they base these beliefs on premises that won’t hold up to scrutiny and that fall apart under examination. At the root of all ungodly thinking is the axiomatic thinking fallacy, in other words, made-up stuff.
Question to Bill
This straightforward question explored Bill’s basis for believing in an old earth, but Bill couldn’t answer it. However, Bill’s lack of ability to answer doesn’t disprove an old earth. It only proves that Bill shouldn’t be so dogmatic about his old-earth concept. We covered Bill’s inability to answer this question in more detail under Scientific Issues earlier.
Question to Ken
This questioner asked a loaded question that presupposes tectonic plate movement at Creation. We don’t see evidence that the tectonic plate movement existed before the Flood. So this question tries to imply a problem or conflict where no problem or conflict exists. For example, one Creation-Flood model proposes continental sprint during the Genesis Flood, suggesting that continental sprint moved at the pace of a fast walk. And in this model, the mountains rose, and ocean bottoms went down at the end of the Flood, and volcanic activity caused both the Flood and the tectonic plate movement. However, the Creation-Flood model doesn’t speculate about tectonic plate movement at Creation. Rather, in the Creation-Flood model, any present tectonic plate movement is residual movement from the Flood.
Question to Bill
How do you balance the Theory of Evolution with the Second Law of Thermodynamics?
This questioner asked a straightforward question, not a loaded question. In answer to this question, Bill implied that the sun stops the Second Law of Thermodynamics from operating, but that’s magical thinking. Adding energy doesn’t solve the problem of the Second Law of Thermodynamics for Bill but rather intensifies it. And the Second Law of Thermodynamics works in both open and closed systems since cars deteriorate and people age despite the sun’s energy.
We can put a book out on the lawn. We observe whether natural forces add information to it through the sun’s energy. We can try that. We won’t find the sun adding information. Instead, natural forces and the sun’s energy will eventually destroy the information in the book. That’s a poor example since a book contains coded information, but it doesn’t contain coded information systems as we have in every living cell. Coded information systems are much more complex than mere coded information, so they’re much less likely to form by chance. Scientists have tested the Second Law on earth. It works here even with the sun’s influence. In fact, no one has found a single exception to the Second Law of Thermodynamics on the earth.
Scientists haven’t observed new coded information creating itself by natural processes in any living cell. However, entire coded information systems would need to create themselves repeatedly if molecules-to-humanity evolution were to happen. Molecules-to-humanity evolution couldn’t even take the smallest step without creating new information systems.
Ken pointed out that Bill can add all the energy he wants, but it won’t bring life to a dead stick.
Question to Ken
Hypothetically, if evidence existed that caused you to have to admit that the earth was older than 10,000 years and Creation did not occur over six days, would you still believe in God and the historical Jesus of Nazareth and that Jesus was the son of God?
This questioner asked a loaded question that presupposes the ability of science to prove facts about the distant past. The loaded question does that by using a hypothetical contrary to fact. Hypothetical contrary to fact is a fallacy. The questioner’s hypothetical question presumes that science can produce absolute proof that would prove the earth is older than 10,000 years. Science can’t produce any certainty about the distant past.
Evolutionists have a problem with the word “evidence.” They use the word “evidence” as if it meant absolute proof. However, when they bring “evidence” for the stories of an old earth, the “evidence” they bring doesn’t prove the stories. The “evidence” is circumstantial and requires assumptions to give the illusion of real evidence.
Ungodly thinkers often use hypothetical questions as fallacies since hypotheticals always launch into the world of make-believe. So, whenever anyone asks a hypothetical, there’s ample room for fallacy in the question.
Bill was so sure of his assumptions that he claimed he could prove the age of the earth with great robustness, yet he didn’t even try to prove it. Instead, he just made the bare claim and then attacked the Bible and the history in it without giving a rational reason for his attack.
Question to Bill
That’s another straightforward question with no presuppositions or loaded language. In answer, Bill made it clear that he has nothing against any gods except for the God of the Bible, and he doesn’t want the God of the Bible to exist.
Ken pointed out that God is necessary for science since, if God didn’t exist, we would need to assume the regularity of nature, and we would have no cause for the laws of nature. If we based all thinking on assumptions, we could have no rational thought. Science couldn’t be rational. On the other hand, with God, we can do science and still be rational since, by revelation, we know that God will faithfully continue to enforce the laws of nature and logic. And God reveals the laws of mathematics, so, with God, we aren’t stuck with just assuming these critical foundations of scientific method.
Question to Ken
Do you believe the entire Bible is to be taken literally? Should people who touch pigskin be stoned? Can men marry multiple women?
That’s a loaded question for several reasons. “Taking the Bible literally” is an ungodly thinker’s straw man, and it’s a straw man fallacy because it oversimplifies reality. Consider the Cambridge Dictionary definition of the word “literal.”
having exactly the same meaning as the basic or original meaning of a word or expression
Google gives this definition:
taking words in their usual or most basic sense without metaphor or allegory
However, God uses metaphor and allegory, and yet He records history accurately as He presents spiritual truth through the history. There’s no mutual exclusivity between God speaking through history, using types and shadows, and God accurately stating what happened.
The questioner asked about the interpretation of Scripture. The Holy Spirit alone can interpret Scripture, and the Holy Spirit always interprets sanely. The Holy Spirit doesn’t interpret Scripture by explaining Scripture away since God says what He means, means what He says. He doesn’t mean what He doesn’t say, nor does He say what He doesn’t mean.
This question is a loaded question because the word “literally” isn’t the right word, but rather, the word should be “rationally” or “reasonably.” Taking the Bible rationally would be taking it without assumptions. It’s also rational to prayerfully and respectfully, acknowledge God as He speaks through Scripture since our thoughts are rational only if they’re guided by the Holy Spirit. However, it’s irrational to try to figure out Scripture using the fallen, deceptive, and wicked human mind that can’t receive spiritual truth.
Besides these problems, the questioner loaded this question by including popular straw man fallacies from Bible-denier websites. The question also consists of three loaded questions, so it’s a form of tossing the elephant fallacy.
Question to Bill
Have you ever believed that evolution was accomplished through way of a higher power?
This questioner asked a straightforward question. This theistic evolution question asks Bill whether he thinks God guided evolution. Is theistic evolution a viable hypothesis? We know some Christians think that the stories of theistic evolution will make atheists accept Christ as Savior. However, we also know that those who reject Christ reject Him for the reasons stated in Scripture. And they do that even though He has revealed Himself to them through the things He’s created. God has revealed that those who reject Christ love darkness more than light. They reject the light because their deeds are evil, and they’re willingly ignorant. He also reveals that they’ve suppressed the truth in their unrighteousness, and as a result, their senseless minds become darkened.
Question to Ken
Name one institution, business, or organization other than a church, amusement park, or the Creation Museum that is using any aspect of creationism to make its product.
This questioner asks a loaded question. The question implies that some institutions, businesses, or organizations other than ungodly universities, amusement parks, or ungodly museums use aspects of evolutionism to make products. But no one uses anything that’s exclusive to evolutionism to make anything real. In making this statement that no one uses evolutionism to make anything real, we must realize that it’s a universal negative. However, it’s not a fallacy because God reveals this universal negative. God reveals that the ungodly story is a lie, and lies have no value for doing useful work in the real world.
In answer to this question, Ken rightly stated that all products depend on biblical revelation. That’s because the Bible reveals the regularity of natural laws, laws of mathematics, and laws of logic. We can’t do science without knowing that these are dependable. And all three of these make sense to a follower of Christ since God reveals these three, but these three are mere assumptions in an ungodly worldview. Evolutionism doesn’t predict these three, and it also violates all three.
Question to Bill
Mr. Nye, since evolution teaches that man is evolving and growing smarter over time, how can you explain the numerous evidences of man’s high intelligence in the past.
This questioner asked a loaded question and added the presupposition using the word “since.” Does evolution teach advances in human intelligence? Sometimes. It depends. The story changes depending on what evolutionists are trying to prove. In this case, Bill said the story of evolution doesn’t teach that man is growing smarter over time. At the same time, Bill based some of his earlier arguments on the presupposition of humanity growing smarter over time. That shows the inconsistency of Bill’s presentation.
Question to Ken
What’s the one thing more than anything else upon which you base your beliefs?
This questioner asked a straightforward but vague question. We can’t tell whether the question is about all beliefs, origins beliefs, beliefs concerning God, or beliefs about something else. At the same time, this question should reveal a lot about both men because, once we dig through the smoke, they base their beliefs either on divine revelation or made-up stuff. That would be a great question for each of us to ask ourselves: Do we base our beliefs on divine revelation or made-up stuff?
Almost every attempt to challenge the Creation-Flood account was a loaded question. All but one of the questions to challenge the big-bang-molecules-to-humanity story were straight-forward questions. Those in favor of evolutionism embedded fallacies in their questions. We see this tendency to resort to fallacies in not only their questions but their statements. It’s as if someone is teaching classes in this technique. In the same way, when Bill Nye made his arguments, he loaded them with nested fallacies, but Ken Ham didn’t do the same with his arguments. What could be the cause of this difference?
Personal Feelings Prove Evolutionism
Bill Nye’s personal feelings were a huge part of his argument:
Your claim . . . is, for me, not satisfactory.
and I understand that Mr. Ham has some explanations for that which I frankly find extraordinary
So, that is not enough evidence for me.
You did not, in my view, address fundamental questions.
Then, as far as Noah being an extraordinary shipwright, I’m very skeptical.
but to me, it’s just not reasonable.
And it’s just not reasonable to me
It’s just not reasonable to me
is an extraordinary claim.
I hope you find that troubling. I hope you’re concerned about that.
That, to me, is unsettling, troubling.
It’s a troubling and unsettling point of view
This is very troubling to me.
that is a troubling and remarkable fact
It’s very troubling.
And something I’ve always found troubling.
Basing belief on personal feelings is a fallacy because no matter how troubled, unsettled, astonished, or disbelieving Bill is, his inner feelings don’t affect reality. Here’s another, more subtle, example:
You can prove the age of the earth with great robustness by observing the universe around us. This is to say, nature has its mediocre designs eaten by its good designs, and so, the perception that there’s a designer that created all this is not necessarily true because we have an explanation that is far more compelling
Bill thinks that he can prove the age of the earth with great robustness, and he thinks that he can do it by observing the universe around himself. However, even though Bill is certain about the age of the earth, he didn’t prove it. We call this fallacy “autistic certainty.” Bill bases his certainty on the fallacy of personal conviction. And we know that Bill is using his personal feelings because Bill said his favored story is “far more compelling” but gave no rational reason for his inspired conviction to believe the favored story. Oh, he gave many reasons, but not one of those reasons was rational. Instead, he expressed a feeling that these stories are compelling.
But why does Bill find the favored story more compelling to himself? It’s because Bill has made the favored story part of his worldview, so it seems like reality to him. So, Bill automatically rejects what God says because it doesn’t fit into Bill’s worldview. As God says, “Their senseless minds are darkened.”
We should have good reasons for what we believe. A good reason has a true premise and valid form. Bare assertions prove nothing, and yet most of modern thought is based on bare assertions with smokescreen fallacies giving the illusion that make-believe is reality.
This quote was adapted from Exposing the Nye-Ham Debate, which hasn’t been published yet. The Nye-Ham debate took place at the Creation Museum and focused on creationism versus evolutionism.
(Excerpt from Reason, Beginning the Journey)
Our journey isn’t about apologetics, and yet it does touch on apologetics so we’ll look at a few quotes from across the Christian spectrum of opinions. For those who want to study apologetics, they’ll find many books on the subject that take one stance or another.
Apologetics may be simply defined as the defense of the Christian faith. The simplicity of this definition, however, masks the complexity of the problem of defining apologetics. It turns out that a diversity of approaches has been taken to defining the meaning, scope, and purpose of apologetics. ~What is Apologetics, Bible.org
Although our journey isn’t a journey to apologetics, we all ought to be thankful for the work of the apologists. And all of us who follow Christ should be able to give a rational response when someone asks us about Christ Who lives in us. So we’ll find that this journey is linked and related to apologetics in many ways. Our journey is about knowing with certainty that God is real, Christ is real, and the Bible is the word of God without error. It’s about knowing that what God has revealed is true. It’s about discerning truth from error. Apologetics defends all of that.
Every form of apologetics has value. Consider the following:
Classical apologetics attempts to use reason and logic (for example, the cosmological argument, the teleological argument, the moral argument, and the ontological argument.) to defend the Christian faith. Experiential apologetics gives testimonies of the ways that Christ has acted and worked through the experiences of those who follow Christ. Presuppositional apologetics points out that all worldviews base their positions on presuppositions, and then it seeks to show that Christianity is more consistent than other worldviews. Cumulative apologetics uses all the various forms of apologetics.
Apologists point out that we do not have to put our minds out to pasture in order to be Christians. Indeed, some of the greatest thinkers and scientists throughout history have been Bible believers, and many have been biblical creationists. Wisdom begins with God (Prov. 1:7); all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are in Christ (Col. 2:3), not with man’s philosophies (1 Cor. 1:20). Proponents of evidential or classical apologetics (the differences are negligible for our purpose here) wish to present a wagon train-load of evidence with the hope that the unbeliever will come to repentance. ~ Cowboy Bob Sorenson, Honoring God in your apologetics
While every form of apologetics has value, not every apologist does the work of God in a way that’s pleasing to God and effective for bringing the unsaved to Christ. It’s easy for an apologist to lose touch with Christ in the process of trying to make a defense. We can never go wrong by focusing on the living Christ.
Thus, it is appropriate to argue against evolutionary theories by pointing out that they are based on presuppositions. However, we should not allow ourselves to be cornered into accepting that the case for the truth of the Bible is also based upon presuppositions. ~ Tim Newton
We don’t use presuppositions as proof that the Bible is true. We don’t use presuppositions as proof that Jesus Christ is real or as proof that God is real. We have a firm Foundation. No other Foundation can be laid than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
The problem with the debate between presuppositionalists and evidentialists is that both sides tacitly admit there is no evidence for God. Presuppositionalists make the subjective argument that they can see the reasons for presupposing the existence of God, but unbelievers cannot. Evidentialists argue objectively from the evidence they think secularists will accept. However, neither side acknowledges the Bible as evidence. ~Tim Newton
While we don’t want to enter into any debates about which of the many methods of apologetics is best, we do know that God wants every follower of Christ to testify of Jesus Christ. Our journey will go into considerable depth on that topic. And those who love apologetics will find great value on this journey as well.
Lord, please make my heart tender toward You so that I can hear Your voice and have confidence in Your leading when You call me to testify of You. Whether I’m testifying to the lost or building up those who are born again, keep me in Your will. Give me the words to say and let Your Holy Spirit abide in my words. Thank you, Lord, for Your goodness in these matters. I trust You. I believe that You’ll open up doors of opportunity and guide me and give me the power to be Your ambassador. Amen.
The word translated as “broken” is loo-0. It literally means to loosen. Truth is tight. Truth is absolute and exclusive by nature. It excludes everything that’s not the truth.
A primary verb; to “loosen” (literally or figuratively): – break (up), destroy, dissolve, (un-) loose, melt, put off.
Every argument against Scripture is based on made-up stuff. Every single argument against Christ or the Bible falls apart upon examination. Of course, those who want to follow their own ways rather than God’s ways are very open-minded toward lies and very closed-minded toward the truth.
that they may be encouraged in heart, knit together in love, and filled with the full riches of complete understanding, so that they may know the mystery of God, namely Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Colossians 2:2-3
We know that the Bible is true and without error. We know that the history in the Bible is accurate. We know that the commands are accurate. We know that the promises are true.
How do we know that the Bible is true and without error? We know because we know the Author of the Bible. He speaks His revelation into our innermost minds, telling us that the Bible is true and without error. He has preserved Scripture for us, and He speaks to us through Scripture. We hear His voice. He speaks through Scripture and every means mentioned in Scripture. Without divine revelation, no one can know anything about anything. God reveals reality to the just and the unjust. However, the unjust refuse to acknowledge Him or thank Him. As a result, they can’t account for any knowledge of the truth. They may be ever learning, but they never come to a knowledge of the truth.
Those who know Jesus Christ are able to see both the natural creation and the Kingdom of the Heavens and the earth. They have spiritual senses that come with being born again, and those senses become keener and more developed each time they hear the voice of the Absolute God and respond in submission and obedience.
John 1 Berean Study Bible
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning. 3Through Him all things were made, and without Him nothing was made that has been made. 4In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
The Witness of John
6There came a man who was sent from God. His name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify about the Light, so that through him everyone might believe. 8He himself was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light.
9The true Light who gives light to every man was coming into the world. 10He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him, the world did not recognize Him. 11He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. 12But to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God— 13children born not of blood, nor of the desire or will of man, but born of God.
The Word Became Flesh
14The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
15John testified concerning Him. He cried out, saying, “This is He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because He was before me.’”
Jesus Christ isn’t a theology, concept, or any other sort of unreal supposition. He’s real. We who follow Him know He’s real because we know Him. He leads, teaches, and corrects us moment by moment. Skeptics don’t have to take our word for it. Anyone who seeks Christ finds Christ so they will find out that Christ is real if they simply seek Him in sincerity. Everyone who truly wants to do the will of God receives discernment to know what comes from Christ as opposed to what comes from other sources.