“I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.” Jesus, as quoted in the Gospel of John, 8:12.
“A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell.
“You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse.” – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity.
Can somebody who doesn’t believe in God still do good things, that is, act morally? The answer to that question is “yes, of course.” But when the issue is the existence of God, asking if an atheist can be moral leads the discussion down a rabbit hole.
The question should be this: How can there be objectively true and universally applicable moral laws if there is no God? If there are such objective moral laws, then there must be a God. We know there are such laws the instant we realize it is always and everywhere wrong to, for example, torture children.
Why is this important, especially if you work on Capitol Hill and are thus part of the process by which America debates and establishes its laws? The answer to that question is in the following video from philosopher William Lane Craig’s Reasonable Faith:
So, you’re jawing with a friend on the cell and happen to mention that you had a really odd dream the other night during which you were driving a sporty Tesla Model S through Hollywood.
Then your friend says, “right, it was a red convertible and we had the top down.” Would that freak you out? What if the next thing he said was “the blonde was in the back seat with me and the redhead was up there with you” and he was right!?!? (Yes, I know Tesla doesn’t make a convertible Model S, but work with me here, ok?)
Now you’re really freaked out because two people just don’t independently have the same dream like that. But, as Cold-Case Christianity’s J. Warner Wallace (the Tesla illustration was actually his, not mine) explains in this video, something like it did happen after Jesus was resurrected. And that makes all the difference in the world for all of us:
That question in the headline above might well seem like an odd one to ask in a world in which the Bible is by far the most-read, best-selling book of all human history. Imagining our world without it is like imagining it without the Sun.
But it being Easter and all, what if we didn’t have the Bible to tell us what the events of this most significant of all weeks mean to each of us as individuals and to all humanity?
That’s a question former NBC “Dateline” cold-case detective J. Warner Wallace addresses in the following video. It’s all about inferences and evidence. He’s writing a book about the resurrection of Christ based on this question and preparing to teach a course on it, so his thoughts here are not mere off-the-cuffisms:
“Imagine a person who comes in … and argues ‘no air exists’ but continues to breathe air while he argues.
“Now intellectually, atheists continue to breathe — they continue to use reason and draw scientific conclusions [which assumes an orderly universe], to make moral judgements [which assumes absolute values] — but the atheistic view of things would in theory make such ‘breathing’ impossible.
“They are breathing God’s air all the time they are arguing against Him.”
“Sir William Ramsay, one of the greatest archeologists ever to have lived, was a student of the German historical school, which taught that the Book of Acts was a product of the mid-second century AD and not of the first century, as it purports to be.
“After reading modern criticism about the Book of Acts, Ramsay became convinced that it was not a trustworthy account of facts of its time (50 AD), and therefore was unworthy of consideration by a historian.
“So in his research on the history of Asia Minor, Ramsay paid little attention to the New Testament. His investigations, however, eventually compelled him to consider the writings of Luke, the author of the Book of Acts.
“The archeologist observed the meticulous accuracy of the historical details and gradually his attitude toward the Book of Acts began to change. He was forced to conclude: ‘Luke is a historian of the first rank … This author should be placed along the very greatest of historians.'” — From “More Than A Carpenter,” by Josh and Sean McDowell, pgs 65-66
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Josh and Sean McDowell’s concise classic on the explosion of evidence for the literal resurrection of Jesus. Send your name, “MTAC” and snail mail address to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Your copy will be on its way!
It’s not a new problem, this question about all the people on earth and down through the centuries since Jesus — before He was crucified dead, buried and then resurrected on the third day — told everybody who would listen that He is the only way to eternal salvation.
Well, what about all those millions of men and women who never got the word about Jesus? How many millions of people died before the Christian church began sending missionaries carrying the Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world?
There have been a variety of possible answers to this problem. Some have argued that such people didn’t hear about Jesus because God chose for them not to hear about Him. This video from Reasonable Faith offers another take:
Are You Following HillFaith? Think Of What You Are Missing!