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     Between an Agnostic and a
     Christian (Con’t)
Conversational Apologetics

   Open Questions
       To understand and know them
   Pointed Questions
       To remove the “roof” of their irrational
   Explain the Gospel
       Only when asked
   Nurture The Relationship
       Help unbelievers grow towards Christ
       Help believers to grow IN Christ
How Would You Respond?

   Have you heard about that court case
    in – where it is? – Kentucky? I can’t
    believe that in the 21st Century, we’re
    STILL arguing about teaching
    Creationism in a Science class! It’s
    ridiculous! Religion and Science are
    two different things.
Typical Response

   Actually, there’s a lot of scientific
    evidence that God created the
Open Questions

   No, can you tell me about that case?
       Follow-up: Why does that bother you?
   What do you mean by ‘creationism?’
   What’s your definition of ‘science?’
   What do you mean by ‘religion?’
   In what ways do you think science and
    religion are different?
How Would You Respond?

   Oh, no! You’re not a fundamentalist
    Christian are you?
Typical Response

   Well, as a matter of fact, I am. But you
    know, there’s a lot of evidence that
    God created the universe.
Open Questions

   What do you mean, “Oh, no?”
   Why do you say I’m a
   What do you mean by
   What would a non-fundamentalist
    Christian be?
How Would You Respond?

   Evidence? I’m talking SCIENTIFIC
    evidence. You know, something that
    you can prove.
Typical Response

   Oh, you mean SCIENTIFIC, like
    THEORY of evolution?
Open Questions

   How would you define ‘scientific
   Can you give me some examples of
    scientific proof?
   How would you define ‘truth?’
       Follow-up: Is scientific proof the only way
        to determine if something is true?
How Would You Respond?

   Yes, exactly. Like the THEORY of
    Gravity! We may not know all the
    details of how gravity works, but we
    know THAT it works. We can prove it.
    And the same is true of evolution.
Typical Response

   Actually, a lot of scientists are
    beginning to doubt whether evolution
    can be proven. They think that an
    objective review of the evidence leads
    away from evolution and towards
    intelligent design.
Open Questions

   What do you mean by ‘evolution?’
   What do you mean that the theory of
    evolution is the same as the theory of
How Would You Respond?

   A lot MORE scientists still believe the
    evidence proves evolution, and a
    handful of Christians who happen to
    have degrees in the sciences and are
    letting their faith overcome their reason
    can not prove otherwise.
Typical Response
   I’d say it’s the secular scientists that are letting THEIR faith overcome
    their reason. Take a look at the cell. Back in Darwin’s day, he could
    assume that the cell evolved from non-living material because he
    thought the cell was pretty simple. I remember reading in science
    textbooks how the “building blocks of life” naturally evolved into
    “SIMPLE, single-celled organisms.” But modern microbiology has
    overturned the myth of the simple cell. The cell is actually a complex
    biochemical factory with thousands of interdependent elements. All
    of those elements had to be there AT THE SAME TIME for the cell to
    function. For it to live. Modern scientists who step back for a minute
    and consider the amazing complexity of the cell realize that it is far
    too complex to have evolved. They compare it to other complex
    systems we find in the world, all of which were designed by an
    intelligent designer for a specific purpose, and conclude – quite
    scientifically – that the cell must have been designed by an intelligent
    designer, too: God!
Open Questions

   What evidence do you find
   Can you give me the names of some
    of the scientists you’re referring to? I’d
    like to read what they have to say.
   How can you tell when someone’s
    ‘faith’ overcomes their reason?
How Would You Respond?
   Wow. That’s a big leap you’re making, there. Just
    because we don’t understand all the complexities of
    how the cell evolved, that doesn’t mean we can just
    arbitrarily say some supernatural creator made it.
    Science is continually refining itself as new
    information becomes available. Back when they
    thought the sun revolved around the earth, there
    was evidence that it really didn’t happen that way.
    But they didn’t conclude that God was magically
    moving the planets – they just refined their
    explanation to account for the evidence – that the
    earth really goes around the sun.
Typical Response

   But that’s exactly what I’m talking
    about – refining the explanation. If
    evolution can’t account for the origin of
    complex cells and intelligent design
    can, shouldn’t we “refine” our
    explanation for the origin of the cell?
Open Questions
   You’re right – I may not have spoken
    precisely. I’m sorry. But what happens in
    science when evidence is discovered that
    disproves the theory?
   How much evidence do you think necessary
    before a theory should be refined or
   What about when contradictory evidence is
    first being discovered – what should
    scientists do with that evidence?
How Dare We?
   We have the truth
       Truth = Reality
   The non-Christian does not
   The non-Christian has a worldview that
    does not correspond with reality
   The more the non-Christian follows the logic
    of his/her worldview, the less they live in the
    real world
   The less the non-Christian follows the logic
    of his/her worldview, the more they live in
    the real world
The Point of Tension
   “Every person is somewhere along the line
    between the real world and the logical
    conclusions of his or her non-Christians
    presuppositions. Every person has the pull
    of two consistencies, the pull towards the
    real world and the pull towards the logic of
    his system. He may let the pendulum swing
    back and forth between them, but he cannot
    live in both places at once.” (Francis
    Schaeffer, The God Who is There).
  The Point of Tension

The Real                                 The logical
World                                     Of the non-
Finding the Point of Tension
   The Object of Open Questions is to find the Point of
   “The first consideration in our apologetics for
    modern man, whether factory-hand or research
    student, is to find the place where his tension
    exists. We will not always find it easy to do this….it
    will take time and will cost something to discover
    what the person we are speaking to often has not
    yet discovered for himself. We, in love, looking to
    the work of the Holy Spirit, must reach down into
    that person and try to find where the point of
    tension is….The next step, is to push him towards
    the logical conclusion of his presuppositions.”
    (Francis Schaeffer, The God Who is There).
And that next step is…

   Pointed Questions
       Come back for the next workshop!

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