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Apologetics In the Marketplace

Anil Kanda
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With skepticism on the rise, how do you meet the questioning of an unbelieving world? Theodicy, atheism, LGBT identity, evolutionism, politics, and the arts are issues becoming more and more confusing and difficult to answer. How do we meet the demands of a rapidly-changing world? Come to this presentation to learn how to become apologetically equipped for the coffee shop, the church, the classroom, and the courtroom.

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Anil Kanda

Pastor in the Central California Conference

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Conference

Recorded

  • August 5, 2016
    3:30 PM
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Father in heaven. Thank you again for the special time. Thank you Lord for the holy Sabbath that's almost a year we pray and ask that you would lead our hearts and minds to Jesus and God that you will quit us to be better communicators better witnesses better ministers for you. That is our prayer in Jesus' name amen big I'm still on. OK Very good. Now I want to share something with you. It's it's kind of a funny story that Ravi Zacharias told anybody heard of Ravi Zacharias very interesting fellow and he told a story one day he talked about Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson anybody ever heard of Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson OK Very good he said one day they went out camping and he said as they went camping in the middle of the night Sherlock Holmes nudged Dr Watson he says. Wake up. He says look up what do you see. And Dr Watson looking up at the sky said astronomically I can see that there are millions of stars and millions of galaxies theologically I can see that God has created the universe. Then he said meteorologically I can see it's going to be a great day tomorrow or logically he said I can see it's a quarter past one A.M. finally Sherlock Holmes hits him and he says Watson you for someone stole the tent. The reason I say this is because oftentimes when you go to apologetic seminar or you go to a seminar that's talking about defending your faith or how to communicate your faith. Oftentimes it can be in very complex language anybody ever experienced before. And then the difficulty is to try to translate that language or that information in a way that's understandable to common people. Well I hope this seminar is going to be something that can be understood in through the Spirit of God it will be Amen. However I do have to warn you about two things we will be covered some topics and you may think. Yourself man we're not spending enough time on that topics. Look I want to be able to get you out of this place. Feeling like you have gained some knowledge some tools that are useful. However I also speak at a very fast pace and so if it is too fast for you. You can listen to the audio recording later on and you can slow it down to the speed you want a man very good. I also like to move in fact when they actually put a pedometer on myself. Anybody know what a pedometer us. I actually quite half a mile one day when I was preaching half a mile one in the do one mile when on stage. Well get into this topic apologetics for a new generation. One day I was reading an article written by Grad a Christiansen She's a well known atheist blogger. She is somebody that does not like Christianity does not like religion. She was challenge by somebody who commented on a post and they said these words What in the world would convince you to become a believer in God a believer in religion. What would it take what developments what criteria. Could you list off that would ultimately convince you. There is a God and so she wrote her next article on this says these words are given you turn this thing on. OK Very good. Unlikely developments that could convince this atheist to believe in God. Now take a good look at this criteria. Number one. Accurate prophecies in sacred texts. I mean just think about that she actually said that she said what would possibly convince me is that if you can find accurate bonafide prophecy in sacred texts and then notice what she says right here. Accurate science in religious texts in other words the scriptures for the religious texts you know are in harmony with the data that is found. Number three the one successful religion and this is interesting. Do you know how she defines the one successful religion when the hair tents are not only happy get this but health. This interesting right. And then number four inexplicably accurate information gained during near death experience guess what friends. We got somebody who came back from the dead Amen. And the last one in an ambiguous message now friends let me ask you a question what is the word in bank with mean it means clear now we're in the world do you think would be a good direction for Grettir Christianson to turn to. Let's just think about this number one accurate prophecy and say could fix. Number two accurate science in religious text. Number three a successful religion with the inheritance not only happy but their healthy. Number four inexplicably act in the explicable the accurate information gained during your death in fact you could even say to someone who understands what happens after death and the very last one a clear message where might you direct this atheist blogger. Now that's a question for you to answer later on. But I want you to understand something. What God has given us in the Seventh Day Adventist message is a very special thing. Amen. And this is a message that's constantly unfolding and we need to understand more and more what God would have a stew Do C.S. Lewis said these powerful words he said the question of being an apologist or someone who defends the Christian faith is not so much whether you use an apologetic in answering someone's question but whether the apologetic you already use is a good one. You see everyone is an apologist for something. The question is whether or not you are a good one. In fact one day I would think it was an A.S.I. several years ago or a G G Y C or one of the seminars and I sat down with lunch and I was surrounded by all the seminar speakers and someone was talking about hope someone was talking about prayer someone was talking about preaching and they asked me this a pastor. Now what are you preaching on and I said I'm going to do it on apologetics and let me tell you something for the next fifteen minutes every single one of these speak. Years gave me a good apologetic on what apologetics was not a good subject to teach on. And I just sat there smiling. Everybody is an apologist. Again the question is whether or not you are a good one. God wants us to be good apologists can you say amen to that. Now the question we have to ask ourselves so why apologetics why the defense of the Christian faith. I wrote down five things in fact I'm being challenged by one of my professors to actually write a book on apologetics So I came up with this first chapter. You guys are experiencing part of chapter one. Why apologetics number one and the white's view of a more multifaceted ministry. A ministry that is constantly expanding and for the and trying to reach needs all of the world number to the limit of current apologetics Now if you ever heard apologist you'll find out that they reach a certain limit with their understanding of the truth of God's word God wants us to be able to go the very next step. Amen. The missing puzzle pieces. Number three the traditional divide of science and religion in fact you're going to learn something amazing about that number for apologetics as the cite bullshit in the world that are about number five confronting anti intellectual ideas in the church. More specifically heresy that has a rising in the church more and more now understand a little bit about heresy so we can kind of have a more focused edge on this. All heresy. All apostasy house one thing. Ultimately in common. This is the one common denominator. Even in the beginning him a name may not look like the common denominator but in the end it is the ultimate common denominator and that is this a diminishing of the nature mission and words of Jesus Christ all heresy will eventually end up in its goal with that perspective a diminished. Of the nature of the mission and the words of Jesus Christ and friends we are surrounded by apostasy today. So apologetics is something super important for God's people to understand. We're going to be taking a good look and this is going to be our launch pad for this seminar at Paul one of the greatest Christian apologist. So if you're if you have your Bible turned to the Book of Acts. Acts Chapter seventeen and Acts chapter seventeen. We're going to be learning a wonderful story X. Chapter seventeen by the way does anybody know who wrote the book of Acts. Luke. Does anybody know who look was writing to the office right. Does anybody know who the office was scholars believe that the office was somebody who was actually living in Jerusalem who was sort of like the spokes person for Paul's ministry. So as Paul went about Member his ministry was being questioned as he was reaching out to Gentiles going all over the world the church needed someone to actually do P R The office was considered a man by many scholars to be someone who was talking about Paul's ministry and vindicating Paul's ministry as he continued to reach the entire world. So we're going to X. Chapter seventeen I want to start with verse sixteen. Let's start with verse sixteen. Notice what the Bible says right here. Now while Paul waited for them. That's the brother at Athens his spirit was provoked within him when he saw the city was given over to what very good idols. Then he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with the Gentile worshippers no notice next phrase and in the market place. In the market place. Paul would have been a great spokesperson for the men in the market place daily with those who happened to be there then certain epicurean and Stoic philosophers. Encountered him and some said what does this babbler want to say this is where gets interesting. Other said he seems to be a proclaimer of foreign gods because he preached to them. Jesus and the resurrection. And they took him and brought him to the area up again saying. May we know what this new doctrine is that that you which you speak for you are bringing some strange things to our ears therefore we want to know what things mean for all the opinions and their foreigners who are there spend all their time in nothing else but to tell or to hear something new now understanding a little bit of the context is quite amazing. There was actually a well known for last for four hundred years plus that was actually tried and judge there at the area up against and that was SOCRATES And by the way do you know why. Socrates was judged and forced to drink the hemlock poison his political rivals accused him of atheism. No he wasn't someone who was an atheist in fact he was actually attacking the democracy the corrupt democracy was there him like many other philosophers philosophers wanted of a strong monarch that could lead Athens Athens had lost some of its glory. And so there were a lot of philosophers that were saying all sorts of things his political rivals did not appreciate that. And so they tried him. And what they did is they judged him guilty. In fact after they judged him guilty there were two courts in the in the city Baptists First they tried him if they were guilty or innocent. The second court tried them on what their punishment would be after they tried SOCRATES And this is your Tim your guilty. The second court said to him. What would you like your parish meant to be he responded I would like you to buy me some food. He actually was so nonchalant about the whole thing. And when they took the hemlock poison and they said to him. It is time for you to drink it. He simply took it and drank it and then he died. Now this is very interesting here you have a man. It was accused of bringing atheism into Athens four hundred years later. Plus you have another man who is on trial. You could say brought before this great council. And of accused of bringing a different. Are quite interesting when you think about the area opera guess it was a place where they actually tried people generally for homicide murder and so here Paul is he's brought before these great counsellors and Athens in this time had lost some of its great glory and its splendor. Yet there were still people who love to hear some of the musings of these philosophers. So as they heard Paul they put in before this this sort of great surrounding and they said What is this new thing that you are teaching to us. Now I want you to pay attention to something Paul was not actually looking for an audience here. What he was actually doing he was busy witnessing in the marketplace in the church and through providence he was brought before all these. These intellects and these scholars and researchers of Athens and it is before this time that he begins to give a powerful defense of the Christian faith. Now let's find out what is said here. And then this is going to be sort of our launching pad for apologetics Let's go to verse twenty two then Paul stood in the midst of the area up against and said Men of what men of what By the way when you read the book of Acts. Paul knows how to address every crowd one crowd he says the men of Israel. The men of emphasis the men of Galilee the men of Athens the men of and you name it. So Paul understood each and every single crowd he was dealing with he understood their pagan background. He understood the superstitions that they had and so he addressed them men of Athens as continue. I perceive that in all things you are very religious for as I was passed. In through and considering the objects of your worship's I found an altar with this inscription to the on known gone. Therefore the one you worship without knowing him I proclaim to you God who made the word world and everything in it since he is Lord of Heaven and Earth does not dwell in temples made with hands nor is he worshipped with man's hand as though he needed anything since he gives to all life breath and all things and he has made from one blood every nation of the men to dwell on the face of the earth and he is determined there Priya pointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings. So that they should seek the Lord in the hope that they might grope for him and find him though he is not far from each one of us for in Him we live and move and have our being are some your poets have said we are also his offspring. Now this is interesting. Paul begins actually quote from these philosophers. Now if you notice there were two groups of philosophers there there were the Epicureans and there were the Stoics they were completely on the other end of the spectrum the Epicureans were people who lived for the here and now they believe pleasure was the all to meet goal. They need care much for an afterlife the Stoics wrong the other end of the spectrum there were people that believed in morality virtue that was the purpose of life and they believed in an after life. And so you have these two groups there on either end of the spectrum and Paul begins to address them. He pays attention to the poetry in the words that are used throughout the city on placards inscriptions and he begins to talk to them in their very own language continue on. Therefore since we are the offspring of God We ought not to think that the divine nature is like gold or silver stone something shaped by art and man's devising truly times of ignorance got overlooked and now commands men everywhere to repent. Because he is appointed on the day which he would. Judge the world in righteousness by the man who he has ordained and he has given assurance of this by raising him from the what Paul drops you all to meet theological bombshell on them that there is a resurrection and then see the response. And when they heard of the resurrection the dead some other said. We will hear you again on this matter. So Paul departed among them. However some men joined them and believed among them. Dno says the area a woman named emeritus and others with him. How many people have read this story before it's very interesting story isn't it. You can read Ellen White's understanding of this her commentary on this story and she points out that Paul learned many lessons when he was brought before this great multitude She says he match logic with logic philosophy with force of feet at the very end. There were so few that came out of it. Of this harvest. But he also switched tactics after this point. This was also a transition time for Paul now wants to pay attention to this because in our world today we have the grand marketplace globalization. We have communication happening in so many ways. Every avenue is being explored. Where in the past. It took months to get a message from one continent to another we can do that in mere minutes now. In fact I actually got a a message not too long ago about a group of people in Africa they heard my sermon somewhere and they said we're now keeping the seventh day sabbath quite remarkable. Right. I mean God has powerful ways of getting the message out. Amen. In fact I also heard something really funny happened two weeks about three weeks ago I get this message from somebody and she said this. You're not going to believe this. You just preach the sermon at Wal-Mart. I said what you mean by that. She said you just preach a sermon at Wal-Mart. She said My son who happens to work at Wal-Mart he what he did is when he went outside for his break he left his walkie talkie on and the walkie talkie connects. With the system. Right. Sometimes you hear them like paging associated to live right here. Those kinds of things they do it on this speaker in this walkie talkie. He went outside he left his walkie talkie on during his break OK locked it on he whipped to his car he turned on the sermon to preach and for forty minutes. Wal-Mart heard a sermon I preached in fact what is so interesting. The managers couldn't took to you know they couldn't turn it off of they couldn't turn it off because the system was essentially logged into place because of his walkie talkie. I mean think about it. Can you imagine that here you are shopping for Tide detergent the voices you need the blood of Jesus to clean a man you're out there shopping in the clearance rack maybe looking for sure you hear this voice. You need the robes of Christ's righteousness right. I mean think about it get to heaven. One day we're going to learn how just the simple things God used one people were doing where how do you want about Jesus. I learned about Jesus at Wal-Mart right. I mean just think about it in our world today information is spreading rapidly and in powerful ways. And so God wants us to be in the forefront of that can you say meant to them and so what we're going to be discovering today is how gaunt wants us to use apologetics in a way that is responsible and powerful take a good look at these quotes by and what she says right here let every worker in the master's Vineyard study plan a notice devise methods to reach the people where they are not as I would assess where they are we must do something out of the common course of things we must arrest the what even putting a sermon on a Wal-Mart right. We must fully believe in church organization but this is not to prescribe the exact way in which we should work for not all minds are to be reached by the same methods. Some of the methods used in this work will notice this will be different from the methods used in the work in the past. But let us let no one because of this block the way by criticism. Different methods of labor are really essential in sowing the seeds of truth and gathering in the harvest and let me ask your question if you were to sum up what these quotes were saying what are they saying. Be flexible good anybody else. Be creative. Very good. What else know your audience I like that very good anybody else. Know your god. OK. Somebody said something we understand the culture and yes that's exactly right very good you guys all said the right answer right. And this is very important because apologetics God wants us to be multifaceted in reaching different people different minds. You know one day I was taking the class I had to take this class and tell you a little bit about it. It was called feminism and sexuality in regards to the Middle East act to take that because I didn't want to take that class for many reasons. And I didn't want to be part of that class but because of the major that I was in I was required and it fit the schedule so I had to take that class and let me tell you something. The teacher in that class. He is somebody who is very much an atheist in fact here is Twitter name is the Arabian atheist then he is somebody who grew up in Lebanon but does not care for religious matters. He has been on the bill. Meyer show. Have you ever heard of Bill Meyers right exerting kind of mind to be on that monitor and that show right. He is somebody that is very anti Christianity. And let me tell you being in this class. It was one of the most difficult things and I thought to myself I'm going to keep my mouth shut the entire time. I'm just going to answer when I'm asked the question I'm just going to speak when I'm asked. So to speak. One day I came across this problem and I want you to pay attention this wisdom is too lofty for what for. No. Is he worth. He opens not his mouth in the world. Do you know what the gate was that word the gate in the land of Israel see the gates where the entrance to Jerusalem the gates is where the elders made decisions were discussion took place. So in other words in the marketplace of ideas. If you keep your mouth shut when it's time to speak. You're a fool and when I heard that I thought to myself Oh man. Lord you've got to help me to know what to say when to say it because when I speak I get into a lot of trouble. We need the Holy Spirit to help us to regulate our mouth right. But there is a time to speak and God wants to speak when it's time to speak in the marketplace of ideas act the gate when it's time for discussion. God wants you to open your mouth. Can you say meant to that. Take a good look at the number one verse that is used to describe apologetics first Peter chapter three verse fifteen sanctify the Lord God in your work hearts and always be ready to give a defense the world is a Paul a gear to everyone who ask you a reason for the hope that is in you with meekness and fear the Bible teaches that we always need to be ready for anything. Take a good look at Ellen White says right here the times demand intelligent educated ministry. She's not just talking about degrees here not novices false doctrines are being multiplied the world is becoming educated to a high standard of little literary attainment and sin unbelief and infidelity are becoming more bold and defined as intellectual knowledge and acuteness are acquired the state of things calls for the use of every power of the intellect for his keen minds under the control of Satan that the minister will have to meet. Let me ask your question how many people here are ministers you should all raise your hand. I don't say you are all pastors that are every believer is called to be a minister for Christ in the same. That right. We will have to meet the world and more and more as knowledge is starting to open up as unbelief is going a sin is starting to grow more and more God calls his people to rise to the standard Take a look at all. Wants is right in the book of vandalism every position of truth taken by our people will bear the criticism of the greatest minds the highest of the world's great men will be brought in contact with truth and therefore every position we take should be critically examine and tested by the Scriptures. Now we seem to be a notice but this will not always be movements or work to bring us to the front and therefore theories of truth can be picked apart to pieces by her story and or the world's greatest men. It will be John. Now you may think oh is that really going to happen I want to time I actually had a friend who was a senior pastor and he actually had to go up to Sacramento to help out a church member who lost his job because of Sabbath keeping. And so they were to meet with the lawyers and the lawyers of the company as well. And so they brought this pastor and my friend he said when he got there he said it was the most unusual thing he sat down to table and he says the lawyers of the company they wanted to talk to him. They said we have some questions for you. How do you define the Seventh Day Adventists and so my friend the pastor begin to say well this is what some of the how do you describe someone who is a Sabbath keeper Oh this is what is Baba Bach then they pulled something out. They pulled out. This is funniest thing the church manual and they said the Lord said we have been studying this church manual and as we look at this individual he doesn't fit the criteria of someone who is a Sabbath keeper. He's worked with this for a few times on the Sabbath. I want you to understand something. Now you may think OK though you are the biggest threat you. It is from your neighbor when they come by and they said hey you know where you go to church you go to church on Sabbath there goes the really the Sabbath you know. Let me tell you something just the way that presidents right now are be a presidential candidates are being vetted how the media is constantly attacking house callers and researchers and pundits or criticizing it one day on my face. We will be brought to the forefront and our ideas will be tested. They will be criticized. They will be scrutinized and we need to know for ourselves what the Bible is truly teaching on this subject say men very important. This is going to blow your mind away. The time will come when we should be called to stand before kings and rulers magistrates and powers in vindication of the truth then it will be a surprise notices to those witnesses to learn that their positions their words the very expressions made in the careless manner or thoughtless way when attacking error or dancing truth expressions that they had not thought would be remembered will be reproduced and they will be confronted with them and their enemies will have the advantage putting their own construction on these words that were spoken on advisedly now what you think about this. This was probably written during a time where you had written records. Now everything is on the Internet and it is very easy to recall sermons. It is easy to recall things that you have put on there articles even things that you wrote in college that can be reproduced. Now let's just think about it. We have some very good examples right now with the presidential campaign going on right. They are digging into the lives of every one of these people. I want you to understand something. It is very important from this point on that every think we say and communicate is in harmony with the spirit of Christ. Amen. It's done in a responsible manner because we are taught that one day they'll be certain individuals and I hope it's not me. That will be brought to the stand and in. From nation that you had said in a careless way will be reproduced and used against you. God wants us to be responsible with the truth. Amen. And we need to learn how to communicate this. So why is apologetics important. How do we actually do. Apologetics number one you need to familiarize yourself with the most up to date material and learn to communicate in a culturally relevant manner. Number two be willing to engage in a variety of contexts the classroom the public forums the churches personal settings wherever you may find yourself in the area all protists you name it. Presenting information notice that removes intellectual barriers to beliefs. I want to say something is very important. We are not called to understand every single answer but we are called to give sufficient answers. We may not understand all there is when it comes to science but we need to learn Teles give reasonable answers. Amen. In fact what is very interesting. I just finished this book on apologetics and the author says something interesting. He says look when you have someone who is you know learning apologetics learning how to give a defense of Christian faith you have so many subjects you need to deal with you have science you have the arts. You have you know literature. You have the all you have religion how in the world is somebody going to become so cultured So experience to be able to answer in every single one of these categories. He responds by saying it's not necessary. He says Take for example how you build a house the way you build a house he says you need an expert in foundations. You need an expert in framing you need an expert in drywalling an expert in painting an expert in Lecter call an expert in plumbing. But he says this but it only takes one individual one individual to not to prove not to approve the house in what individual it is the inspector and the inspector guess what doesn't know all there is to know about foundations. He does know all there is about framing or plumbing. Or electrical but what he can notice is flaws and once he identifies flaws. He can completely screw up the entire project untel the error is fix. So he eventually makes the argument the author that Christian apologise or call to be inspectors when it comes to these other theories can you say amen to that and the ultimate goal friends is to lead individuals to a wonderful experience with Jesus. Now let's jump into our apologetics let me ask your question what do you think is the number one question asked by people to Christian apologist. Number one question in the entire world that is asked more Christian apologist in any other question there is how do we know God is true anybody else to God really resurrected it OK very good anybody else. Tell you how can you believe what you believe OK. God's not there anybody else. Yes. OK very good anybody else is there a god. Number one question is this if God is so good why is the world so bad. That's the number one question. Now I want you to think about this this is so interesting number one question that is asked if God is so good why is the world so bad. I'm reading this book called God is not one is from one of my classes and the man is a Christian but he says this. He says this oftentimes assumed that all religions are the same in that there may be slight differences but they have the same goal. He says that every religion has distinctive that are so different. They can not be categorized as being very similar and leading to the same goal. He said. For example take the Hindus their end goal is no Ivana right. Take you know Muslims their end goal this is a picture of have been right eternal bliss. A Christian's right. He says in every religion the end goal is different even the concepts of God is different but he said The one thing that can be said about all religions is this that in the beginning they asked this one question why is the world. Miss. That's the number one question asked by all religious groups in other words this is why you need this will leave him because something is wrong. So in other words all thing one thing that all religions have in common is that they ask the initial question why is the world mess. What's wrong with this world. Now just think about that such an interesting question isn't it. Peter craft a Christian apologist. He says these words. The problem of evil is the most serious problem in the world more people have abandoned their faith because of the problem of evil than any other reason it is certainly it is certainly the greatest test of faith the greatest temptation to unbelief and it's not just an intellectual objection we feel that we live in it. The problem can be stated very simply. If God is so good why is his world so bad why do bad things happen to good people. Anybody who that individual is right there. Charles Darwin you know a book he wrote. That when you write the origin of species right now what's very interesting about this book right. You know when he wrote it or when he actually authored this book. Yeah that's very interesting hundreds run around the time the seven dams was movement was growing right or is beginning to grow. Now what's very interesting you actually study out the history of Charles Darwin. You will see very interesting from his own writings that it was not scientific conclusions that led him down the path of naturalism. Rather it was conclusions he had about theocracy. If you go look at this. This is actually written in the letter. With respect to the theological view of the question this is always painful to me I am be willed and I have no intention to write atheistic Lee but I own that I. Cannot see as plainly as others do and I would as I wish to do evidence of design and beneficence of all sides of us. There seems to be too much misery in the world. I cannot persuade myself that I've been if a certain omnipotent omnipresent God would have designed only created notice the wast with the express intention of there are a lot of feeding within the bodies of caterpillars or that a cat should play with mice. We need to go look at what Charles Darwin was wrestling with what was he wrestling with the world is messed up. How could a good god create a messed up world. That's a question we all wrestle with right now I want you to know understand something when you open up your Bible. Was the very first thing you encounter when you open up the Scriptures. OK creation. Now what do you encounter when you open up creation you encounter a perfect world. What have you encountered that perfect world. OK what else you encounter a perfect world the perfect people who worship a perfect god right. Perfect environment you close your Bible you look around in the world around us what you see you see completely opposite don't you. Let's open up one more time perfect God perfect people perfect world both the Bible you look around it doesn't match up. Now what your stance something God was very intentional put Genesis chapter one in the very beginning about you wonder why because God wants you to ask the same question what's wrong. Now what you think about this. Imagine if you just left your house where you are safe your home Lobel into like John things are cool right. You left your house you clean your house. Everything was perfect you vacuumed all the clothes were folded the dog is fed taken care of by the neighbors whoever announce you're leaving the house you say OK it looks good. I'm going to clean house. You go home you go. But you go to A.S.I. you love your Arizona you love the project seminar right. You go back home. It's a Monday. You get there. Your doors busted open you look inside the house the dwarfs are open. There's clothes everywhere. You know to scratch marks on your car. There's dishes actually. You know dirty and in the sink. Now would you think to yourself for that very moment. Just like the way I left it. Now what would you think you would think what happened. Is that obvious you would you would logically ask the question what happened you would not just go about as things are oh yeah oh this is really good things are just we left it in other words the reason why God introduces us in Genesis Chapter one The perfect God and perfect world to commune with the perfect people and then we close the Bible we see a missed approach because God wants you to ask the exact same question what happened. He actually wants you to ask the question if God is so good why is the world so bad now that something super important. We don't actually have the story away from that question God actually wants us to confront that question. That's why Genesis Chapter one is in the very beginning of the Bible God wants you to ask the question if God is so good why is this world so messed up by the way did you know somebody else asked that same question Do you know Jesus gave a parable right here. Matthew chapter thirteen years twenty four another parable he put forth them saying the kingdom of heaven is like a man who sold work. What kind of people so good scenes in their fields very good good farmers. I mean if they put bad seeds right they'd be bad farmers right. Pretty obvious right let's keep going good seed in this field but Wall men slipped notice is he worth his enemy came and so tears among the wee and winters way when the grain had sprouted and produced the crop then the tears also appeared so the servants of the owner came. And said to him Sir did you not so good seed in your field but what can people so good season feel good farmer notice. How then does it have what tears. Now let's let's rephrase that. Aren't you supposed to be a good form or why is the field messed up. Let's put even if you are so good why is the world so messed up. You were actually looking at the field to see question here. The Problem of Evil question. Jesus is actually affirming the person who asked the question if God is so good why is the world so messed up but notice the response of Jesus right here he said to them and enemy has done this. The Problem of Evil needs to be transitioned into a great controversy narrative without the vital components of the war in heaven merely describing the fall of mankind does not suffice key points need to eventually be introduced to expand the perspective are broken with existence. The very first direction is that of God's own heart by the way do you know the word problem of evil. It only appears once in the spirit prophet Juno that. Once in the entire spirit prophecy thousands of writing thousands of pages of material only once. Does that phrase the problem of evil appear to you no where in the introduction to the great controversy. She actually wrote the introduction to the great controversy and you know what she says in the introduction. She says this The object of this book is to provide satisfactory answers to the problem of evil. Now this is a good see more powerful when you open up that book. What is the very first thing you're introduced to what's in chapter one. You don't need to read the book. What's the very first thing you're introduced in chapter one of the great controversy. Let's not let people will say well why was that book written to give what sat her words are satisfactory answers to the problem of evil. So you think it OK This book is actually meant to deal with the problem of evil in other words this book is to give a satisfactory answer to probably go to answer the question. Gord if you so good. See them why is the world that this is the book. God has given to us. Now the question is what is the very first thing you're introduced to when you open up this book. You know there's a read the book again. Jesus weeping. And just think about that if this entire book is written to answer the problem of evil the very first thing we're introduced to is Jesus weeping over Jerusalem. We're now learning how to understand and approach the great controversy with people in other words the very first thing that we should get before the people and answering the problem of evil is that God's own heart is broke. I tracked with me so far. I mean think about it. I mean we could go on and by the way Christian apologist generally what they'll say is the reason why the world is so messed up is because people have choice. Now let me tell you something if you just lost your loved one is that really a satisfactory answer. You know the entirety of the Book of Job is confusion. You know that right. You know why it's confusing because the entirety of the Book of Job or the most of the Book of Job is Job's friends attempting to answer the problem of evil. That's why most people in the Open up the Book of Job say I have no clue what that means I can understand the beginning and I can understand the end but I. I have no clue what the rest of the Book of Job means why because it's man's attempt to answer the problem of evil and the more you read it. You're just like I don't know where this is going Job's friends are completely missing the mark here but when you open up the great controversy it's very interesting the first thing we're introduced the first thing we need to understand about answering the problem of evil is that God's own heart is broken. Now this is powerful stuff. Friends I want you to sense something so many times I've attempted to answer the problem of evil through a different approach thinking that my words may be comfortable give someone hope you have we're in the situation because mankind made some bad choices that doesn't come for anybody. This is where politics is limited right here that this is where Adventism steps over them that there is a great controversy met a narrative and that God's heart is broken because of the promise in your heart is broken because of this tragedy guess what God's heart is open to the very first direction is that of God's own heart. God is broken over the tragedies we experience this proffer point immediately brings the heart of mankind into connection with the want the heart of God This is such a powerful thing when we begin to understand the problem of evil. Now we have to ask ourselves questions like wait a minute. In dealing with this subject. The problem of evil. Let's expand this a little bit more I need to know how much time I have left and you know. I was one day sitting with a graduate student he was an atheist. He was Bishop he was going to philosophy and he told me right back. As if I want to know something you know I don't believe in God I don't believe in religion I don't believe in any of that stuff and I go by what he said to me he said these words he says because there are so much evil and suffering in this world. So you know when I said to him I said something interesting I said well how do you solve the problem. He looked right at me looked right at me in the eyes and he said you know actually I don't know I just think about that. I mean here he is he's accusing God of you know bringing on this sort of suffering he's an immoral being but then when you actually ask the question how would you how do you solve this problem. This something that every person understands and that is this evil is not so much extra know as it is. Internal the line of good evil runs through every single person you can get rid of all the evil in the world but guess what it will just sprout up again because it's in the heart of every person. And so what the great controversy the plan of redemption is God's way of getting rid of it. So how do we also deal with some of these questions. We need to learn this principle of apologetics and that is this learning to question the questioner In fact when you study out the life of Christ. You know he actually asked one hundred questions in the Gospels. One hundred questions in the gospels Jesus understood the prejudices that were there. And he understood how to overcome the prejudice by the way how many people here go to a Sabbath school razor and. I fully believe this that the way Sabbath schools have been done. Currently have really messed us up in our communication. You wonder why because the Sabbath school teacher says. What's the answer and you know we say this is the answer. So what's the wrong with that. What day is the Sabbath Saturday Sabbath what happens when they die they sleep right. What is verse fifty two you say this is what verse fifty two says good and you know what's happened. And in our communication with the world. We've become so superficial our communication we're just quick to give answers when you actually study out the life of Christ the way he gave answers with two questions Do you know it was two questions. He led searchers back to where they could find the truth. You know I realize this one study out of the way that Jesus communique. Jesus would say what saith the law. What do you read when you open up the Scriptures how readers now answer this question and this is super important because what happens is when a person feels directed by their own choice to be able to go back and examine this what they begin to see begin to own that which they discover so friends I really want to challenge you on this topic when you're communicating with people learn to ask questions learn just not just to give the answers but learn to ask questions. Why did Jesus ask questions. Well he revealed the divinity of the Savior by asking heart searching questions he expose assumptions. Held by the questioner he showed the question of the fallacies of their own beliefs. He pointed out prejudices and avoided possible accusations he led the questioner to obvious conclusions on their own thus being responsible for answers and they yearned for more you know I'm doing now when people ask me questions say for example on the Sabbath they were OK let's open up the Bible you tell me what that says You tell me what do you think that means right there and it's been so amazing what happens during bible study people aren't sleeping they're like awake. And it's amazing because the best part Bible studies when you're saying what do you think this means they'll be like this means that the doubters. Praying and it's amazing because it's just like you get this. These are hungering for these things. I'm telling you friends. We need to learn to ask questions not just give the answers by the way you know we're going be doing for eternity. Obvious to me asking. We're going to be asking God questions we're going to be searching out more and more of the mysteries of God and you know what's required in searching questions forever. The infinite God will be revealing himself to finite beings and it's powerful Think All right let's look at another form of the projects this came out by Frank. It's called the atheist crimes and what he essentially says is this he said atheist commit crimes in that they actually borrow from arguments for God's existence and they use the material to attack God in his book Stealing from God He says that atheist commit crimes. C stands for causality or stands for reason I stands for intentionality and stands for morality Estampes for evil F. stands for science and in his book he makes the argument that atheists will actually extract information truth surrounding the will and way of God and they will use that for example you might have heard that common argument called the moral argument where a person will accuse God of being immoral. Now in order to accuse God of being immoral of doing something they must first have an objective moral incur right. But without an objective moral anchor. How can they make a judgement about morality in fact yesterday. My brother in law and my sister just live about twenty minutes from here. He's a lawyer and she runs several businesses and he works for this very nice firm and anyway as you know I come from a Hindu and sea background and so I was really pretty and so gorgeous opened up a door and so I was there driving and it was so amazing. My brother was like so. So what are you doing at this convention right. Well that's what I'm doing and I can't I'm not sure and then he says he's like So how did you become a Christian and I was like well this is how I became a Christian. And then he says oh how is it different from other religious beliefs. I said this is how and then he says something interesting. He says that's good. He says you need a moral incur he says I was taught in law school that you really can't argue for morality. Then we talked about the O.J. Simpson case I was actually listening to an interview by the one of the attorneys should Korea was what was his first name. Robert and Robert was actually asked a question in an interview. Do you think O.J. Simpson was. You think justice was served and the ship. Ari Shapiro responds by saying this he said well I believe legal justice was served. But if you're asking about moral justice. That's another question. And so I was talking to my brother in law about that and he said yeah you know it's very interesting moral justice is so important. You need an anchor you need something objective and here he is he's essentially give me arguments for Christianity with this. OK And I'm just assuming that's actually right. You have to write about that and the question is well where do you find you know why this argument is super important because it helps us to understand that when we're dealing with accusations we're dealing with skeptics that are attacking the belief in God or the belief in Scripture and we need to understand that they're actually borrowing from material that is of God. For example he makes this argument we talk about our reason he talks about the laws of logic. He says he says this God you know he'll do with skeptics and skeptics will know there's no such thing as god. And then he asked the question he says let me ask you a question what are the three laws of logic. They'll say well if you break down all the laws of logic they fall into three categories the law of non-contradiction you have the law of excluded middle and then you have the law of identity. He says this is what happens when you break down all the laws of logic and he asked the second question he says did a lot of logic exist before the creation of mankind from Pearlie a naturalistic expert perspective. Skeptics as well. To the laws of logic exists prior to the creation of mankind before mankind was ever evolved or whatever you believe in they said yes the laws of logic are absolute then you ask the next question. Where they come from. Are the laws of logic come from. Because even if you were to remove physical matter or the laws of logic still they're still there. Where did these laws of logic come from and he sent. He makes the argument that atheists who try to reason away from reason away from God actually have to borrow reason of God to do it. It's very powerful when you take I highly recommend that book to anybody think about the law. Right. For example you know I was sitting around actually passed the subject right now let's go to the Sabbath. Now let's talk about the Sabbath every take your Bible go to Acts chapter fourteen I want you to see something interesting Acts Chapter fourteen plot a very unusual way of dealing with people who are not of his. Particular faith Acts Chapter fourteen he's dealing with he then does anybody know the difference between he even in a gentile with a gentile a Gentiles and non jew What's a heathen. It be a non-Christian or consider a non Jew as well. Right. OK let's go to accept are fourteen. Paul comes across people who are heathen right. Are you all there. Good. I need to be there. OK extra fourteen. OK let's start with verse eight and in Lystra a certain man without strength in his feet was sitting a cripple from his mother's womb. Who would never want this man heard Paul speaking Paul observing intently and seeing that he had faith to be healed said to him with a loud voice stand up straight on your feet. He leaped up and walk to notice. Now when the people saw what Paul had done they raised their voices saying like Coney in language the gods have come down to us in the likeness of men and Barnabas they called Probably Barnabas probably was jolly looking that Zeus right there and watch what they say about Paul and Paul Hermes because he was a cheap speakers very eloquent then the priest of Zeus who was then the temple was to temple was in front of the city brought oxen and garlands to the gates intending to sacrifice a multitude verse fourteen to keep but the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard this they tore their clothes ran in among them all to be crying out and said men why are you doing these things. We are also men with the same nature as you and preach to you that you should turn from these useless things notice to the living God who made the heaven the earth the sea and all that is in the world according from. What do you find that praise made the heavens the earth the sea all that is in the word that phrase found. Is found in the fourth commandment by when you read the rest of the book of Acts do you know whenever Paul was dealing with Gentiles Oftentimes he would quote from the fourth commandment. Do you know when you actually study of the Old Testament many times people would call from the Fourth Commandment when they were appealing to God's great power the Sabbath was used to define and point people to God more than a personal being but to the as the creator gone. Now why is this very important. Look we don't want to see is right or the most affective way to teach the heathen Gnosis who know not gone is through His what. What you just have right here the per script on how to reach people who are not Christian who are part of a pagan background whether Hindus and Muslims. She says this is true. Here's what works when you appeal to God as the Great Creator. Just like Paul did right here he said the God who made the heavens the earth and the sea. He says it has enough peel. She says it has an appeal to people who are in that particular background in this way far more readily than by any other method they can be made to realize the difference between their idols the works of their own hands and the true God the maker of heaven and earth in itself. The beauty of nature leads a soul away from sin and worldly attractions and towards purity peace and gone. There is one thing the Bible tells us in Romans chapter one and that is this the world that does not know God is still not excusable because what can be known about God is seen through his was created works. God uses nature often time to communicate. With people by the way when you read. Jonah Chapter One God speaks to Jonah does John speak back to him. No You know what God does. He sends a well then Jonah talks to The Lord John chapter four George is upset does he talk to God. You know what God sends next a plant and a worm. In other words where the first method of Revelation failed God resorted to the second method of Revelation which is what nature. And so those that don't yet accept the Scriptures as the Word of God God also wants us to appeal to the second book of Revelation which is. Nature. And it's through the beauty of nature that God can communicate in fact in India. I have some friends and they left a part of this big old school in this thousands of Hindus and Muslims at the school they left this school one day and as they left something strange took place a troop of monkeys. They made their way to the top of their house and they stayed there the entire I think it was ten days on top of this house and they were described by many of the people in the school as these big like huge looking monkeys right. And they were there. The whole time. When they came back their friends they saw this troop of monkeys. They looked at them as big monkeys. They were in the house the monkeys took off never came again on that road they found out later by people in that village that the day they left people were planning to go into their house to do stuff. To do stuff inside their house to take stuff and when they went there they found this group of monkeys with these huge. Monkey looking monkeys and they were there they were so afraid they fled but each day they would come back to check and these monkeys just stood there. And for the entire. Your time they were there at the very end. Word came back to them that the god of those monkeys protects that house. So God knows how to use nature to reach out to people. Amen. So seventy AM As Christians we also need to use nature and one of the best ways we can communicate about nature is gone. Not that God is in nature but that nature is his handiwork is to the beautiful truth of the Sabbath the Sabbath is a powerful way that God wants us to communicate that. And guess what. But I have a friend right there. Shaun White Cliff John could you give me for a second in a bar you. Now every know what this city. Sean is. Is from Bangladesh. It's wonderful. You guys because people think I will look like right. This is Shawn right here. Sean wants a college ministry Jumma called ministry to run. Now Berkeley California is definitely not like Andrews University right. And they have a lot of international students at Berkeley and this is amazing. They're getting a lot of people to start keeping the Sabbath. Could you tell us. Real quickly how that's happening. Yeah I don't think it's a big call it are mainly so's I could be that he voted on this but mostly a lot of all right. I mean you transfer. Very stressed out and so you're right he has killed over the money he's raised which is right. Really you know one very minute a. Why would you want to study law so you know really you know the easy thing about the money doesn't make any sense that it reduces but we raise your right. So you think you know a lot of this is a quote for him that we didn't do recently to say you can have just one thing for your family and some kids will see the movie and drop out. You know those are really a lot of these books there will be even though they don't even know the family are on High Street for you this is Berkeley. We understand his birth family he's Are there are seven years or eight years of regard for that. I mean yes you're very much on notice is very interesting. In other words. And you've been heard of a kernel biology where they're actually showing that the seventh day Sabbath rest. People need to rest every single Sabbath not because of culture or even because merely of just religious obligation but because of biology. So in other words nature itself can be used to give an argument for why I should keep the Sabbath and keeping the Sabbath will be led to the truth by the way all my sins of the sample is kept as it was from the very beginning she said. There never be a single idolatry or atheist ever. Those are words word for word. So the atheists are keeping the Sabbath will not be atheist very long. So coming around to the airport the end of this my friend he had gone to this debate and and it's very interesting in this debate. He was to hear a Christian apologist who's going to debate and naturalist professor and they were discussed whether or not God exists when you got there some of the students that put the whole thing on they did something wrong they put the entire bait a debate asked. Science versus religion. Now what's wrong with that label it makes religion sound as if it's unscientific Right right. But that's not the case and so they had to talk to the students about that next time you guys do that don't title science vs religion. Right because it's not science versus religion in fact what's so amazing about this friends. I really appreciate the seventy M. is church because we have nothing wrong with the with dealing with the data that's found the data that's actually discovered it's complete combat it can be compatible with the flood story. Now imagine this. In fact if there was no flood story we'd have a difficult time explaining why the fossil record is the way it is but because there's a flood story. It makes sense and that's what's so amazing is that we have nothing to fear from the science that's found or the data that's found its interpretation that can be troublesome right now the question was asked to many students. What's your big problem with Christianity they responded because there's a divide between science and religion. Religion is actually not scientific. Now friends we can get into a discussion right now about how we can come up with better arguments for creation science which I believe is important but I believe something else. I believe God is not just calling us down the path of how do I understand creation science better but to understand how science it we don't want says we're here. Much of the prejudice that prevents the truth of the thirteen joules message from reaching the hearts of the people might be removed if more attention were given to health reform when people become interested in the subject notices the way is often prepare for the entrance of all their work if they see that we are intelligent with regard to help. They will be more ready to believe that we are sound in what. OK What is she actually saying right here. It's the last line is the one not there. Oh so much. What's actually the last line saying to. If they see that we are intelligent with regard to help they will see that we are more ready to be more ready to believe that we are sounding Bible doctrines what she actually saying about health science right here we have good science right. So in other words friends. I really think the Adventist Church as much as we have a great you know creation is we probably expand on that little bit more if we continue to place emphasis upon health science people will see wait a minute you guys are not unscientific You guys are very scientific people. Why because we understand the human body. That's exactly right. So how do we overcome that barrier faith vs science health science friends health science is very key even in Christian apologetics by the way you know I always love using this do you know when shake up the old patriarch came before Pharaoh in the book of Genesis What's the first word that came out of parables mouth. How old are you. That's the first thing came out of one why. Egyptians never lived that long. He saw an old Israel I come before me like way to test this question How old is never seen anybody this old you look at the Egyptian mummies when they die forty's or fifty's take up was what eighty ninety one thirty. That's fantastic. And he was there and no one says that what was happening is the Egyptians were learning about the advantages of the Hebrew religion. You know I just think about that when they see that we're intelligent with what we believe about help. Look they're going to be like what else you got what else you got for us and this is so powerful and friends. Let me tell you something seventy AM This is fast becoming not a spiritual term but a medical term. And we need to jump on that. Amen. Ministers especially those who become intelligent questions shepherds of the flock they will be held accountable. For willing ignorance and disregard of nature's laws. As conventions institutes and other large and important meetings instruction should be given upon help in temperance bring into service all the talent at command and follow up with work up the work with publications on this subject. Educate educate educate should be the work. Watchword and friends. This is such a powerful thing when you begin to think about this combining health reform with Christian apologetics Man that's amazing stuff. Appreciate what Sean's doing over there with this how to get straight A's. It also helps the fact that you look very Indian That always helps right as a minority group that successful right there. Let's go over the right. It always helps. Right but friends I want you understand some of this is super important. Then what I said earlier. Modern Christian politics is limited but what Adventism can go we can step over those boundaries with all the beautiful truths that God has given to us not just about the great controversy not just about what the moral law is but even with regards to science. There's one thing that Paul understood though coming out of this this sort of a debate with those philosophers in Athens he understood one powerful point and that is this that he need to preach more of Christ more of Christ. Well my it says right here. There's one great central truth to be kept ever before the mind in the searching of the Scriptures Christ and Him one crucified every other truth is invested with influence and power corresponding to its relation to this theme. It's only in the light of the Cross that we can discern the Exalted character of the law of God hanging upon the cross of Christ was the work gospel. He was the gospel. There's this analogy one day I think it was his name his old preacher used to say this analogy and he described this analogy about a woman one day she was looking at a piece of cloth. And she wasn't sure she was going to buy the squat of this fabric store it was of hanging up there. She walks inside and she says I'm interested in buying this quote but I'm not sure. Buy it or not. And the cashier said Hold on one second. She goes into the back she gets one of the other associates there and the associate comes out with this beautiful dress made with that claw and she just floating around her and that customer said I'll buy you see when they begin to see Jesus manifested these individual truths. Clothed with the beauty of God they're going to say I want I want that you know I had this funny expense I shared a couple sermons in the past with this atheist professor just happened last year I was in that class and you know I was praying I said OK Lord I don't you know I don't know how to deal with this kind of stuff sometimes and one day the teacher said this out of the blue he said you know today subject we're going to cover how he was how he worded it. The male miss of God has led to the oppression of women in the Middle East. Specifically through the use of the three primary religions and then he lists them off. Judaism is long and Christianity and then he spent one minute on Islam. He spent one minute on Judaism and then he spent thirty minutes bashing Christianity how Christianity has actually oppressed women and cause them to be second class is that's not what Jesus did you know. But let me tell you something in a class like that political science class at stance a university. Who everyone jumped on the bandwagon. They all raised as if yes you know God got oppresses women you know and he makes them feel as second class citizens and this is why we should have you know be doing this kind of stuff and blah blah blah and they're just going back and forth back and forth and finally I'm just there on the psycho killer and I don't want to say anything right now like I don't need to see anything. And finally I just put my hand up like this. I think I say something. And the teacher said yes and by that even norm. A pastor I show up with like shorty want to see me walking around like a recruiter from last year or something like that but I walk around like and I'm not sure why he said that but anyways I was going to scratch up audio verse about it. Really. So I mean I show up with shorts and everything. I mean it's like they think I'm one of the Stooges bomb a pastor you know and I was there and he said well what do you think and I said well you know it's very interesting I think when you take a good look at Hinduism Hinduism actually has female goddesses. But that has not stopped the oppression of women in India and he said that's a good point. I said in fact when you take a good look at the word that's used in the book of Genesis. Specifically Chapter two when God created helpmeet that would help me several times to describe God's power for help and military aid throughout the Old Testament help or does not respond to a butler. OK Help or response to powerful help right in this someone to be with mankind in that work at that moment all the other students I mean they just said well you know they begin to raise their hand. They said when you take a good look at the Scriptures. God is a pressing women take a good look at what they were doing in the Old Testament they were stoning women they were doing all these things. And you know it's so funny. The teacher he was like he was listening to him and he says these he said these words. So what do you think you know. And as I said these words I say this sounds like a Bible class somebody was having you know lapping up the whole thing right. And I said well first of all I said you know when you take a good look and this is where the Lord really gave me the right words Jesus the founder of Christianity. I said you saw all the way that he lifted for us may magnums about to be stoned by the way which is practiced in the Middle East today I said that I said you take a good look at his resurrection. He appeared to a broken Mary even before his. Disciple and as I just began to talk about the beauty of Christ. Everyone just became silent while I took out even the book or reading on the Middle East and I said even Jesus would have violated the norms. Today the teacher just look there was the pin drop silence. You know and someone on the piano making if you're right I just talked about the just the beauty of Jesus. The teacher just after about a few seconds of silence. He looked at me and says we're changing the subject now. Just like that. I mean just think about this when my sis. This is our message our what what's the argument. Jesus right. Our doctrine our warning to be appended to our encouragement for the soaring and the hope for every believer. Paul understood the understood the beautiful truth of Christ and Him crucified of all professing Christians seven the Amish should be foremost in uplifting who Christ before the world the proclamation of according to the message calls for the presentation of the Sabbath through no question about that this truth with others including the message is to be proclaimed But the great center of attraction of what attraction Christ Jesus must not be left out the sinner must be left to lead to look to crowd very simple faith of a little child he must trust in the merits of the Savior except in his righteousness righteousness believing in his mercy friends I really want to challenge this in your discussion in your communication with the world with unbelievers. People who may not be or understand maybe some of the things you understand. Whoever they are make it your sole designer to uplift Jesus. I'm going to uplift Jesus the beauty of God and you will see an attraction to Christ like never before. Amen. All right we are officially done to say a prayer and then we do a quick Q. and A if you have any questions and we're done. That's about our heads. Father in heaven. Thank you again for the seminar. That whatever was good.

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