A Few Example Posts:

  • "The End of Faith: A Short Response to Sam Harris"
  • See also:
  • "A Long Response to Sam Harris' The End of Faith, by Neil Shenvi"

  • "Is John Piper the Best Answer to Emergence and Postmodernism?"

  • "Captured"

  • "The Storm is Over"

  • "If Golfing Were the Pursuit of Moral Perfection"

  • 9.19.2005

    Ultimate Discussions 1



    Ultimate Discussions and The Ultimate Topic by John Rush

    The following posts (about 10 of them) over the next few days will contain the scripts of an audio recording I made a couple of years ago. I wanted to make a CD that I could give to people as a way of telling the Gospel to people. It is a personal evangelism project. These CD’s have gone out to many places I know not of. My prayer is that the Lord will use the audio recordings to bring people to Himself. My brother-in-law provided the transition music between each track--classical guitar.

    The CD’s are low-key and a one-to-one conversational style. Here is the Introduction Script and the first Ultimate Discussion: The Ultimate Topic: God.
    -----------------------

    Introduction:

    This CD is entitled “Ultimate Discussions.” The American Heritage Dictionary defines ultimate as “representing the farthest possible extent of analysis.” Well, that definition obviously does not apply here. I cannot cram the farthest extent of Christian analysis into these discussions for two reasons: First, I’m not smart enough to know that kind of analysis. And secondly, even I were, it would not fit on one CD. So I have purposefully gone the exact opposite direction--keeping each track between 3 and 5 minutes.

    The dictionary does give another meaning of ultimate defining it as “fundamental; or elemental.” I think that best describes these talks. I want to talk about only some of the basic and elemental understandings of Christianity with the hope of encouraging you to consider the claims of Christ and the Bible even further--on your own.

    Thanks to Steve Nichols for the musical backgrounds and transitions to help keep the content of this CD moving and interesting. Let’s get started...

    The Ultimate Topic: God

    Thousands of books have been written over thousands of years about the ultimate topic: God. You can pile up whole forests worth of paper arguing for and against His existence. Even people who claim not to believe in God still have to think about Him long enough to make their arguments. When the topic comes up, I doubt you will ever find anyone respond with a blank stare and tilted head saying, “God? I’ve never heard of the concept.” I have seen people obsessed with disproving His existence. The impression I get is that they protest too much and exhaust themselves in the process.

    It is an old, but true, argument that nature itself tells us of God’s existence. According to one of the New Testament writers, “...since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made (Romans 1:20, NIV).” We can see the design that makes up creation and intuitively know that there is a Grand Designer.

    Nature is not the only proclaimer of God’s existence. Somewhere in the deepest core of ourselves, we humans know that God--whatever He is like--is out there. We hear a small, whispering, sometimes wordless voice when we pillow our heads at night: this is conscience. It says, “What about God?” Some listen and try to answer the question. Others of us simply try to turn it off. And we have all kinds of duct tape to slap on that voice to shut it up. Some have shut that voice up for years, but if they would reflect for a moment, they could easily remember what it sounded like. Augustus Strong wrote, “The existence of God is a first truth; in other words, the knowledge of God’s existence is a rational intuition.”1 I think he is right. The awareness of God is not just an emotional twinge that tugs at us. Our minds know that God is there.

    Because creation and conscience declare the existence of God, the Bible does not actually try to prove the point. William Evans wrote, “It does not seem to have occurred to any of the writers of either the Old or the New Testaments to attempt to prove or to argue for the existence of God. Everywhere and at all times it is a fact taken for granted.”2

    This is the point of my discussion: The question of God’s existence is important enough to move us to make an exerted study. And I want to encourage you to think about it, read about it. One book that is easily found in most bookstores is called Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis. Lewis was an atheist who became a Christian by thinking through the issues. Of course, the best book you could read is the Bible itself. But that is another discussion...

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    1. Augustus H. Strong, Systematic Theology: 3 volumes in 1 (Valley Forge, PA; Judson Press, 1907), 52.

    2. William Evans, The Great Doctrines of the Bible (Chicago, Moody Press, 1912), 13.


    3 Comments:

    At 7:59 PM, Blogger Steve Weaver said...

    John,

    This is excellent material. I have heard the CD and it is a very useful tool for evangelism. We need to find a way to upload the audio online. I could post it on MP3 format on my sermonaudio site. Let me know what you think?

     
    At 12:30 PM, Blogger John Rush said...

    Let's put 'em up. Would love for them to get "out there."

    JRush

     
    At 6:40 AM, Blogger Joe said...

    Great post!

    God is etched in the heart of every human. It remains only to introduce them to Him through Christ.

     

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