Why isn’t God more Obvious? Part 5

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Hiddenness of God 9 Comments

Last time I recounted how Melanie the agnostic was feeling stuck. She wanted to believe in God but simply didn’t. How could she get her former faith ignited and moving again? I agreed with Melanie that while you cannot make yourself believe, you can at least put yourself in position to develop faith. That is, read the Scriptures in community, stay in fellowship …

Why isn’t God more Obvious? Part 2

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Hiddenness of God 9 Comments

In my prior post I posed the question of why Jesus might not want to make himself known, plainly, to everyone. In Mark 4 and elsewhere he seems to indicate that one of the purposes of his parables is to partially obscure the truth about himself, “lest they turn and be forgiven.” Thus Jesus is sometimes referred to by scholars as the “hidden” …

Why isn’t God more Obvious? Part 1

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Hiddenness of God 0 Comments

A question (or objection) I hear regularly in my travels to college campuses is why God doesn’t make himself known to everyone, plainly and clearly. One skeptical student put it this way: “Your god sends billions of people to hell for not believing in him — but provides no clear evidence that he’s there at all. Why not just show …

Responding to Objections 6: “Couldn’t this be explained by . . . “

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism 6 Comments

  Are miracles possible? No, according to an atheist acquaintance of mine. Here’s why: 1. Miracles are not repeatable events. Therefore they are not scientific. 2. For any supposed miracle, there is always, always a natural explanation, even if we don’t know what it is (yet). 3. Eye-witnesses who believe they’ve seen a miracle are always gullible, mistaken, sometimes even …

Responding to Objections 5: “Couldn’t this be explained by . . . “

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism 2 Comments

From my last post: Why think theism (belief in God) is a better explanation for the world than naturalism (athiesm)? Here’s one reason. Naturalism struggles to explain the more subjective parts of life, such as consciousness, ethics, art, intention and other mental states. Two atheist philosophers illustrate the point: Thomas Nagel acknowledges the difficulty of explaining the rise of human consciousness …

Responding to Objections 4: “Couldn’t this be explained by . . .”

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism, Science and Faith 0 Comments

In my prior post I mentioned that for many skeptics of religion, the starting point for all inquiry is naturalism. Nature is all there is. There is no God or gods or spiritual realm. And further: all events have a natural explanation , or at least potentially so. Ghosts, magic, miracles, voodoo, etc. — all will be debunked, now or in the future. …

Responding to Objections 3: “Couldn’t this be explained by . . .”

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism 0 Comments

There’s a famous essay in the philosophy of religion called The Presumption of Atheism, by the late Antony Flew. Flew spent the second half of the 20th century defending the worldview of naturalism before changing his mind, late in life, to believing in a Creator/Designer. The point of Flew’s essay is that atheism (naturalism) is the default position all reasonable persons should adopt, …

Responding to Objections 1: “Couldn’t this be explained by . . .”

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism 0 Comments

A common critique I hear from seekers and skeptics is that the design of the world, the miracles of Jesus and answered prayer can all be explained in natural terms. God not needed. Key response: Alternative explanations are not necessarily true. Take design, for example. Design refers to the idea that the world seems to exhibit amazing “purposive” order. The motions …

Growing a Ministry 5: Getting Wins (part 2)

Rick Mattson Leadership 0 Comments

  In my previous post I promised to talk about the Hand-Picked-Model. Honestly, it’s not for everyone. Not only does HPM not “take all comers,” it doesn’t even appeal as a method to many leaders. They prefer the Inclusive-Faithful-Model, where everyone is invited to all events and the job of leaders is simply to be faithful to whomever shows up. The example …