Jesus, the Creationist

While in church this Sunday, we were studying Mark chapter 10, which contains one of the many instances where a person in scripture refers to the history of Genesis. In this case, it was Jesus Christ, God Himself, who stated in Mark 10:6

 “But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.”

This is Jesus talking, the savior. Often times during debates, or listening to testimonies, I hear that people have come across pastors, elders and the like who have dismissed the Genesis account as ‘just a story’. I’m sure everyone reading this has had experience with that; how they just teach us lessons; how it isn’t the main focus; how it doesn’t matter, as long as you believe Christ.

So, you are telling someone who is searching for reasonable, legitimate hope in this crazy world, no don’t believe this over here, but you have to believe this over here. And then that journeymen comes across Mark chapter 10 and what happens? Christ says, in the beginning God made them male and female.

In evolution theory, the beginning of life begins with one celled organisms around 4 billion years ago, the unfathomable magic of time to influence students that given enough of it, the physically impossible can take place. But sexual reproduction does not evolve until 1.1 billion years. That isn’t people, mind you. It is simply the first sexual reproductive event. Man and woman, well they arrive on the scene much later, between 1 and 5 million years ago, depending on who you ask.

But Christ said they were male and female at the beginning. This is a rather large disparagement, wouldn’t you say? A difference of about 3,995,000,000 years between when Man and Woman appear and the “beginning”. So clearly Christ was lying, yes? Clearly He also was just telling stories? No, I’m afraid not. Christ was pointing to the historicity of the Genesis account, and based on that actual history, was applying it to our lives today. It is clear from Christ here, along with many other verses, that the New testament writers fully respected the historical accuracy of the venerated Torah, Moses’ account of the beginning.

Keep in mind that Christianity has many theories on how to conform with man’s proposed timeline, ways to compromise the biblical account in order to acquiesce to evolutionary theory. There is theistic evolution, gap theory, day-age creation, and several others. But as we have learned in Timothy All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. And taken as a whole, every one of these bible-compromising theories falls short. Does your salvation depend on it? No. But you’d better be able to explain the inconsistencies when you approach a non-believer who is searching. Because if they don’t believe the beginning, there is really no reason for them to believe the rest.

And in the case of Mark chapter 10, you either have an All Powerful Creator God who disagrees with materialism’s theory of molecules to man, or you have a very confused deity, who likes to speak in fables, and folktales, to issue his opinion on how best to live; who is flummoxed by real science, real history, and has chosen to deceive His followers in order to make a point. He didn’t know man would eventually find out the truth, and that he would be 4 billion years off in His assessments about time. He chose to take old testament patriarchs at their word,  and either didn’t know or didn’t care that His views would eventually be outdated religious ramblings.

Christ never allowed for the compromising of the Word. Ever. He fulfilled it. It is a sword. The watered down, take-parts-you-like version of the word of God is not intellectually honest, and atheists know it. We must stand with conviction and courage on the word of God. If they disagree with part of it, make them disagree with all of it. But if Christ didn’t allow for the compromising of scripture, then we shouldn’t either. If you allow for the beginning to be false, you inadvertently throw all of its doctrines into question, and that is thorny ground.

http://www.facebook.com/cooper.author

 

Why did I write this Novel?

Everyone wants to write a book, or make a film, or tell a story. Everyone has a fleeting thought about a scenario, or event that would make a fantastic tale. A situation, or predicament. Arching it back to a beginning, bringing it to a satisfying end, those are the difficulties.stock-photo-21876498-colored-books-with-clear-cover-falling-away

It’s within the execution of the telling that life gets in between, that we lose our way, that a great idea fizzles. I should know, because there are dozens of my own untold tales that have decayed in the assiduous assaults of everyday life. I have so many chapter ones that if they correlated with one another, I’d have enough material for another novel. But this novel, The Last Saint, was different. It was an idea that wouldn’t let go, and had to be told.

From a Christian point of view, if there was going to be a rapture, then there was definitively going to be someone who was the last person saved before it happened, the last Christian before the end; and I knew exactly what that looked like. Without the ambitions of publishing, or financial gain, or recognition, I only knew that I couldn’t dispel with the idea until it was fully discovered. The idea was strong, and haunting, and instead of waning, it grew to permeate my days, disturbed my sleep, and play out in my dreams. The need to write it was greater than my ability to dismiss it. It suddenly didn’t matter that I couldn’t write a novel, or that it wasn’t my job, or I probably wasn’t skilled enough, or that I didn’t have time. It was coming out, one way or another.

I found resolve in making a decision to write it. The trigger had been pulled, and like any other passion, be it music, or baking, or dance, I would undertake it’s challenges to make it as excellent as possible.

The first draft was done in one month. The story was out of my head, written badly, but on paper. I was in love. Now, to make it not so embarrassing.

I had written for years, mostly poetry, lyrics for rock songs, some unpublished shorts, none of which required the polished rectitude of a novel. Poetic license was often utilized as a license to remain sloppy, rather than bother to refine a chosen craft. This was true in many facets of life, not just art. But if I was to tell the tale, it would need to be told so that how it was presented didn’t detract from the power of the journey.

At this point, I didn’t even know how long to make it. There are articles on how long first time novels should be, articles on what techniques to avoid, what techniques to employ. A friend, by the handle Inkslick, was helpful in devising setting parameters, and encouraged literary horses, the drivers of common themes within the story. I read blogs from famous authors, and spent days filling my brain with information, until my momentum was stifled by fear. I had to let go of it all, shove it all away, off my desk, clear the mechanism. I chose one or two principles that seemed to resonate with me, and stopped trying to make it what it was supposed to be. I told my tale.

Getting picked up my a publishing company was a blessing, and quite unexpected. I had sent some chapters on a dare, and now a nationally distributed novel of my own will be arriving within days. All because this idea was so strong a year ago, and I didn’t let go. I learned. I learned weaknesses, but also what I am capable of. I learned that there is allowed to be more, much more, that flows from my heart, and into my life. I can add my own creations, my own thoughts, my own beliefs, to the world around me. I simply gave myself permission to do so, and in doing, to explore those little fleeting thoughts that we all have, crying out to tell a story. I just answered.

To order The Last Saint visit https://jrcooper.org/

 

Islamic Terror in Nice

This isn’t apologetcis, or theological study. It isn’t fiction, and it isn’t to teach. This is me going back to why I started writing in the first place, in order to get out my emotions, sort out my feelings.

Because confusion about the depravity of man, though always realized, is thrust into full shocking comprehension when yet another terrorist takes as many lives as possible before gladly accepting death. And those left behind to view the horrors wrought are forced to sift through the detritus in hopes of eventually emerging with some comfort. But for the non-Christian, there is none. Is that shocking? Let me say it again. For the non-Christian, there can be no concept of justice, and there will be no catharsis.

The victim’s families are fully aware that it was this person’s intention to die after the mission, this jihadist action. It was a suicide mission, and for who knows how long, this man has been taught that how he went out was the most honorable way to do so. That it was preferred, and revered, and not only would he be held in high esteem back here among the living by his cohorts, but his holy book and spiritual teachers had already convinced him that paradise awaited. That dying for the cause is in fact the only sure way to reach paradise. If you are aware of this only as a concept attributed to right wing Islamophobia, consider these Quran and Hadith Verses:

 

Whoso fighteth in the way of Allah, be he slain or be he victorious, on him We shall bestow a vast reward.

And there is the type of man who gives his life to earn the pleasure of Allah…

I would love to be martyred in Allah’s Cause and then get resurrected and then get martyred, and then get resurrected again and then get martyred and then get resurrected again and then get martyred.

Allah guarantees that He will admit the Mujahid in His Cause into Paradise if he is killed

seeking death at places where it can be expected.

Nobody who enters Paradise will return to this world even if he were offered everything on the surface of the earth  except the martyr who will desire to return to this world and be killed ten times for the sake of the great honor that has been bestowed upon him.

they fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: a promise binding on Him in truth… and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah? then rejoice in the bargain which ye have concluded: that is the achievement supreme.”

As the Ayatollah Khomeini put it, “The purest joy in Islam is to kill and be killed for Allah.”

At a  youth convention in 1999: “Fighting for freedom, fighting for Islam, that is not suicide. They kill themselves for Islam.”

This means that,

a) Islam is correct, and these people doin fact reached paradise this way, or

b) (atheistic view) since there is no God, no trial can be held, the jihadist got what he wanted, there will be no justice, and even retribution against other extremist factions will only result in the deaths of either innocents, or those who would gladly seek death for their beliefs. Therefore there is no healing. No peace. No life after this, and only confirmation of how meaningless life is. The reaction to this mindset is either a high degree of self-satisfaction or self-destruction. Or,

c) The bible is true, and the God of the bible is real. And in it, God states that judgement is His and His alone. Which means those who do believe in the word of God can in fact take comfort that final judgement rests upon Him. It will give the hearts involved, and those who sympathize, a very real peace about how judgement is handled in the end. And simultaneously, affords that same individual an opportunity to be thankful for their own grace. The process of healing, even this way, even inundated with gospel truth, will still be long and arduous. But there is comfort in Him, and in that truth. Comfort rather than utter helplessness. And hope in God is the precise thing that will give the desperate rest.

The reason why these Jihadists are prone to homicide has nothing to do with genetics, desperation, or suicide. It is the ideology that promotes martyrdom by promising paradise to those who lose their lives for Allah. Meanwhile, any attempt to protect citizens from this dangerous mindset in the west will be met with screams of racism, bigotry, Islamophobia, and right-wing hate. Never mind the actual teachings of Muhammad, or the scriptures of Islam, or the countless examples of terror perpetrated on not only the Muslim world, but the world over, or the rapes, or the sympathy for barbaric sharia laws.  But to educate people of this is to be hated, when it is in fact a hatred of hate, in other words love, that drives the desire to teach, and to save, and to share the good news of Jesus Christ.

I have already seen in the aftermath, countless watered down, desperate attempts to categorize this attack with the socially accepted narrative of the day, and each one has been a cop-out. I do not doubt the sincerity of grief, or sympathy. But they would not use that grief to acknowledge truth, for fear of offending. So to read their thoughts, one might think, perhaps it was Militant Jews? Perhaps it was Militant Catholics? Perhaps Militant Buddhists? But that doesn’t matter. Writings infused with allusions to inclusiveness, and judgement for those who don’t agree. But we all kind of know who it was, don’t we? We may not say it, but we all kind of know. And we all kind of know why. Do we have an honest conversation about it? Or do we post a prayer for France (which of course we should be praying for them), change our profile pic to an Eiffel Tower, and content ourselves to be distracted by the next sensation, or scandal, or fad, so that we do not have to consider it. Perhaps a sports team, or some funny videos, or political scandal. But in 9 days, or two weeks, or a month, it will happen again, hopefully next time with a gun so we can quickly blame those to divert focus from the truth (and because blaming a truck is silly). And we will all kind of know who did it. And we will all kind of know why.

Lincoln and Olivia Fischer

(Back Story: The Last Saint)

“You don’t think it would be an amazing adventure?”

“I think it would be an expensive one, if that’s what you mean?” Olivia chided Lincoln’s attempt to entice her, and not for the first time, to consider a trip to Israel’s holy land. “It just isn’t in our budget, love. It’s output versus reward. At the end of the trip, we’d be $20,000 further from being in the black, and have 200 digital pictures in a file on our E-hub that we never look at.”

“You are looking at it wrong.” Lincoln set himself sternly facing her. He almost faltered against the glare he received, as she reacted to his insinuation. She was obstinate, surely, but from time to time, despite the deep love for his wife, Lincoln chose a battle to stand his ground. Their mutual respect for each other prevented catastrophic blow-ups, but with the self-control exercised by each, came the ratcheted-up, unresolved tension that could last days. “It isn’t just a vacation. It is part of history, of heritage. From that place grew almost every belief and law and value that this country used to hold dear. Most of that history you can’t even find anymore because of the Purge! It isn’t for the pictures. It’s to stand somewhere special!”

“I just got you back from overseas! Are you not somewhere special right now?!” Olivia wondered loudly.

“You mean, Tennessee?”

“No, you schmuck! Home! Here! With me!” Olivia about-faced and walked from the room, leaving Lincoln standing in their living room to consider her absence, and all that it implied. He heard the tires screech as she pulled from the garage, and as the engine reported back her growing distance from their condo, he sighed audibly, and collapsed back on their couch. “I guess I won’t be going to the gym with you then.”

Why was this so difficult, Lincoln wondered. Only back from military duty for a few days, and already the fondness caused by such a long absence had withered. “I should have known better than to bring up religion again.” It happened every time. Such a wall there; something so repellent towards his love of biblical studies.

Lincoln made his way to the study, calling to the house, “Lights at 35%.” They dimmed to his specifications as he slumped into the desk chair, dejected, and jacked in to the e-hub. “Pick up where I left off” The private journal file appeared on screen. This journal was kept off the Sky, the world’s cyber-drive. He could see at the lower right he had several more requests for the growing collection of material. The Purge had caused quite a demand within certain circles.

Lincoln Fischer focused his energy on research. Olivia would be gone awhile, and he could get a good bit done before trying to salvage the evening. It was an easy escape, a love of something mysterious and complex, that wanted to be discovered. But was Olivia not just such a mystery? So lovely, so full of fire.

Lincoln bowed his head at the desk, “Father, please help me to be a better husband. To find a way to love and respect my wife on terms she will understand. For us to find common ground, hopefully, eventually in spiritual matters, but not just that. Let her… please just let her see my love for her, in all I do; in my actions towards her. And please, help her to to see Christ in my life, and help it to soften her heart. She is so strong, and so brave, and I love that. But, Father, though she has these characteristics, I know deep down, she will need humility too. To finally see what I see; to be in awe of you, and in that new knowledge, realize her need for your grace. I don’t know… I don’t know what will… just help me Father, be who I need to be for her. Amen.” The screen was sleeping when he opened his eyes. Lincoln stood resolved to love his wife through this spat, and made his way to the kitchen to prepare a candlelight dinner.

(To find out the fate of Lincoln and Olivia, read The Last Saint by J.R. Cooper, out in only a few days on amazon.com or here at www.jrcooper.org available for pre-order now!!

candle_wax_wax_candle_263039

You Aren’t Free

There is this violation to our psyche, this offense that rears and bucks at the thought of losing liberty – or worse yet, realizing you don’t have it. This battle is tumultuous within the political realm, to be sure. But what about within your soul? If we focus for a minute, not on the rulers and lawmakers of a particular land, but instead on the method in which you run your own life, make decisions for yourself, chose your path.What controls that direction? Is it random? Certainly not. Your choices are made based on what you love.

That is not to say that we don’t have free will, but rather that our choices are inexorably tied to that which we love and worship. Becky Manley Pippert, in Out of the Salt Shaker, says, “Whatever controls us is our Lord. The person who seeks power is controlled by power. The person who seeks acceptance is controlled by acceptance. We do not control ourselves. We are controlled by the lord of our lives.”

This means that though we act upon our own desires, make 10,000 decisions a day, all while maintaining that we are masters of our own destiny, not one of us is free. There is no soul that is not pressed upon by some ruling factor. There is no one truly at liberty to be free from all needs, or to just be. This is an illusion, and furthermore, as with atheism for example, to deny God, or a lord within your life, is to deny that a deeper desire exists within you, one that rules over your direction. Fear? Food? Vanity? Sexual immorality? Money? Anger? Do these not lord over us? Do we not make decisions in order to feed these desires? That isn’t freedom. That is control of another kind. I am reminded of verses such as, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.”

“You shall have no other gods before me.”

“Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me.  Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say.  You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.  Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me!  Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.””

If there is a lord of your life no matter what, if this is a truth that is understood by an individual, then it would behoove us to take notice of what the bible makes very clear. You are either of Him, or of your father the devil. There is no alternative option. To be utterly free is to be God. This means, as people who aren’t gods, we must choose the type of slavery we want to operate under. The slavery of sin, of unforgiveness, of distance from our creator God? Or do we  chose to worship God, make Him our king, our Lord, and in that relationship, find redemption, forgiveness, grace, hope. Either way, you belong to someone not of yourself. If you need proof, then consider this… the lord of your life will determine the nature of your death. If you are in fact the lord of your life, then by what means will you conquer it?

Mammals ate Dinosaurs!

774px-Timeline_evolution_of_life.svgAs we know from years of evolutionary indoctrination, the deep-time model has dinosaurs (dragons) living from about 230 million years ago to about 65 million years when through all manner of conjecture ranging from meteors to flatulence (I’m not kidding) the dinosaurs became extinct, making way for the prosperity of mammals. What I am about to tell you was discovered in 2005, but if you google or research the chronology of evolution, you will still find the narrative has remained stubbornly constant. Above is a standard evolutionary timeline, showing data will not affect the paradigm, a philosophy clung to at all costs.

Published with the aid of scientists at New York’s Natural History Museum, there was a discovery announced in 2005 about a fossil. It was found by a farmer in northeastern China, and was dated at 130 million years old. It was a mammal.

This mammal is listed as Repenomamus Robustus, and is akin to a large possum, or shrew, that is simply called Repe. Bear in mind, the creation model has no issue with heavy duty animals larger than today’s due to pre-flood conditions (air pressure, oxygen content, magnetism), so this could very well be a larger than modern day possum, as several over-sized mammals have been found in the fossil record. But there is more damning evidence for the evolutionist’s model to consider.

ig25_Repenomamus_rob_02After examining the fossil, scientists first thought it had been pregnant at the time of burial. Turns out that’s not the case. This specimen was buried so quickly that preserved in it’s stomach was its last meal, the chewed up body of a baby dinosaur, the psittacosaur. The mammal had last eaten a dinosaur before being quickly buried in water, and mud, leaving no time for digestion before fossilization. Admitting the tantalizing find  proved that there was a”major player” within the ecosystem of what science has dubbed the Mesozoic period, previously reserved for dinosaurs and since stubborn discoveries like these, a begrudgingly  admitted spectrum of smaller mammals. There was no discussion of the conundrum it left evolutionists with. 

The scientist, Jin Meng, said “This is the first direct evidence that mammals fed on dinosaurs.” Comments abounded regarding how dinosaurs must be tasty, and mammalian species were getting payback. But no where within the frivolous conversation were obvious conclusions considered, such as, ‘perhaps we need to rethink our time-line, or dating methods, or postulate a model that has more mammals and dinosaurs living at the same time and, within the same ecosystem, and consider how that could be, since it would necessitate the evolution of mammals much earlier. None of these questions were addressed by secularists.

I will keep pointing out that evidence continues to support, and fall within the young earth, deluge model, and evolutionists will of course continue to push back, touting their faith in evolution as fact we must accept. Our friend the Repe is just another one of many finds that not only shows a world that was buried quickly in a catastrophe like Noah’s flood, but that all known animals were around at the same time, including man. Using the bible, we can clearly infer that ancestors of  the Repe and the psittacosaur were made on day 6, and can see that played out within the wonderful observable earth sciences.

Over all there have been 432 mammals found within the rock layers of dinosaurs, but as we keep pointing out, these specimens are not publicized or taught. That may not seem like a lot of samples, but consider this; there have only been 1200 full dinosaur skeletons found. Out of the millions of fossils found, only 0.0125% of them are vertebrates.

Again, for fun you can google “how old are mammals” and get information on the discovery of 165 million year old mammals, while at the same time googling a time line for evolution that still teaches small mammals arising at 60 million years regardless of how it flies in the face of known discoveries (such as a large mammal eating dinosaurs 130 million years ago). 

[From livescience.com -meet your mama-

These new findings also suggest this forerunner of most mammals appeared shortly after the catastrophe that ended the age of dinosaurs, scientists added.

“Species like rodents and primates did not share the Earth with nonavian dinosaurs, but arose from a common ancestor — a small, insect-eating, scampering animal — shortly after the dinosaurs’ demise,” said researcher Maureen O’Leary at Stony Brook University in New York.]

I reiterate, this is not science but a philosophy, clung to with all of the fervor of any other religion, and indifferent to that which is observable. They have their doctrines, and will not be dissuaded. My fervent prayer is that the house of cards that is evolutionary theory will soon collapse under the weight of its own failure. But until that day, consider the words of our Lord Jesus from John 3:12: “If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?”

If you cannot understand what you see here on earth, how can you understand what God has in store?

Let’s Be Clear… It’s a Young Earth

I have debated many agnostics and atheists over the years, over a myriad of issues, and against both hostile and kind opponents. I appreciate each one, because more often than not it highlights areas of apologetics that I need to brush up on, or better teaches me how to present biblical truth with love, rather than some misguided sense of superiority. Let us never forget as apologists that our sole purpose is to guide others lovingly to the cross. Not to berate or belittle those who lack a relationship with Christ.

But often a discussion will beat around the bush in regards to specifics of the creation model, or not address it at all if it isn’t within the scope of a contested topic, leaving sometimes months of ambiguity about certain positions. This may leave the opponent, or those following along, with unanswered queries that usually are dismissed, no doubt forsaken for a more comfortable choice. When smacked in the face with a glaring challenge to a long understood paradigm, the reaction towards me can be intense. Perhaps I seem dense, ignorant, or even stupid to the debater, and the inevitable response is to pretend it wasn’t said, or to forever think slightly less of me. I have had people throw my bible across a room, I have been told to shut up, and that I know nothing about science, and am met with dumbfounded questions like, “Have you ever even been to a natural history museum?”

So to boldly state it, so there is no room for dismissal or confusion, we will address the elephant in the room. I am a biblicist, young earth creationist who believes the earth, and for that matter the universe, is only about 6 or 7 thousand years old. I have seen science agree with the bible time and time again, and consider deep time science to be filled with assumption, circular reasoning, and un-testable hypothesis. This means dinosaurs and man have always lived together, which concurs with the book of Job. This means languages were confused at Babel, which fits with the science of linguistics, and current understanding of population growth charts. It means archaeology attests consistently to old testament historicity, regarding geography, ancient kings, unearthed cities, and numerous artifacts such as cuniform and bulae. It means we observe limiting factors in cosmology such as volcanic moons on Jupiter which should have long since cooled off, the moon pulling away from the earth in its orbit limiting its age, the impossibility of comets being older than 10,000 years due to the loss of material as it moves, the drifting out of Saturn’s rings and much more. It means we look to a literal world wide deluge about 4500 years ago to explain not only the fossil record, but also the unique and extraordinary geological features we find world wide. This includes explanation of biomass becoming fossil fuels, the Grand Canyon, the ice age, millions of tons of sediment burying pre-flood animals all over the world, like sharks teeth in a South Dakota farmer’s field, petrified clams on Mount Everest, and fossil graveyards that collected thousands of carcasses from varied species in post-flood eddies. It explains how we find man-made objects in coal seems, signs of civilization near the edges of the continental shelf, and evidence of malnourished, nomadic man with primitive tools during a post-flood world. It means we can account for the over 300 flood legends from almost every ancient civilization. It corroborates taxonomy and genetics, and allows for the splendor of natural variety within animal kinds without assuming un-demonstrable macro-evolution. It embraces the natural laws of physics, and does not assume a constant, yet un-observable, violation of these laws in order to add complexity to a closed system.

The creation does not claim to answer every mystery, but it does begin with a basic pre-supposition that the bible, in all of its uniqueness, is an eye-witness account of the history of our world, and so far is the only text proven to consistently get it right.

Without even discussing the over 1800 prophecies fulfilled without error as a mode of proof, let us consider that the bible discussed the cities of Nineveh, Ur, Jericho, and the City of David before they were unearthed in modern times; that it clued us into pathways/currents in the ocean as well as fountains from under the sea floor before man knew they were there; that it told us the earth hung in space on nothing back when men still fought over whether it rested on the shoulders of a god or on the shell of a large turtle.

In the simple telling of truthful history over a  4000 year period of writing from over 40 authors, the bible as a simple matter-of-fact revealed concise details that only later could be verified, and its accuracy continues to astound, causing skeptics to blare from a position of argumentum ad ignorantiam, or “absence of evidence”. At every turn, and within every field of scientific study, a logical position can be taken and defended that stands on the authority of scripture. I encourage questions and curiosities as always, but let us not be scared to proclaim the truth without compromise. And let us not remain ignorant of the fact that evolution is purely faith based. The only difference is the bible offers us veracity as well as hope, where as evolution offers only conjecture and insignificance.

What is Apologetics?

Are we apologizing for being Christian? Heaven forbid. Apology in early English times did not convey the idea of excuse, or making amends for some injury done.An apologist should proudly proclaim the word of God as inerrant, divinely inspired, and expertly preserved through the ages, better than any other in history. For example, apologist John Warwick Montgomery says this: “To be skeptical of the resultant text of the New Testament books is to allow all of classical antiquity to slip into obscurity”. The reason? Because the bible manuscripts have been retained and preserved hundreds, even thousands of times better than many of the books we rely on from antiquity. Click on CARM.org link here to examine the difference between our bible and the writings of Plato, or Aristotle, or Homer. There is no comparison, as no other book in history demanded such reverence and respect when it came to authenticity.

How I defended the scriptures there, using facts, resources, respected researchers and authors, that is apologetics. Defense, from the Greek “apologia” means a defense of conduct and procedure. A verbal defense, a speech in defense of what one has done, or of truth which one believes. This describes, like a lawyer might, the examining of facts and reason that would allow someone to believe, or make a case for belief.

“Apologia” is used 8 times in the new testament including the verse 1 peter 3:15 ‘But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer (defense, apologia) to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.’

Here are some other relevant verses
Acts 22:1 – hear my defense before you now
1 corinthians 9:3 My defense to those who examine me is this…
Philippians 1:7 … in the defense and confirmation of the gospel
Philippians 1:17 knowing I am appointed for the defense of the gospel…
The manner in which the word “apologia” is used in 1 peter 3:15, denotes the kind of defense one would make to a legal inquiry, asking, “Why are you a Christian?”

Everyone who is a Christian is responsible to give an adequate answer to this question. Christianity is either EVERYTHING to mankind, or it is NOTHING. It is either the highest certainty, or the greatest delusion. But we lovingly guide others to Christ knowing this; Christianity appeals to facts of history that are clearly recognizable and accessible by everyone. It is a factual faith. Here is a basic apologetic thesis:
“There is an infinite, all-wise, all-powerful, all-loving God who has revealed Himself by means natural and supernatural in creation, in the nature of man, in the history of Israel and the Church, in the pages of Holy Scripture, in the incarnation of God in Christ, and in the heart of the believer by the gospel.” – (Bernard Ramm, apologist.)
There are many ways to practice apologetics, and I would encourage you to follow your studies in a direction that the Spirit leads you, and based on how adeptly you pick up on the different types. Often you will have to decide at the onset of a discussion what pre-suppositions each party is starting with. These will have to be explored and defined, otherwise it will be very difficult to make points. As you already know, the world of religion is very complex, and debates can spin off onto several tangents very fast. One party may want to challenge the veracity of a God while the other is only prepared to start with the pre-supposition that the bible is true, accurate, inerrant etc. There is room in apologetics for every presupposition, as long as it is defined. In fact, you may find that the bulk of a discussion is spent defining the problem. There is nothing wrong with this. As it is often said, “If I had only one hour to save the world, I would spend fifty-five minutes defining the problem, and only five minutes finding the solution.”

One way to practice apologetics is Classical, which highlights rational argument for the existence of God. You have to show that God exists before you can show miracles, or necessitate Christ’s works. Without the presupposition that God exists, it is hard to show why we need redemption at all. Refining this argument further, you can approach from a couple positions. One states there must be a cause for matter to exist; some cause that was not caused itself, for there cannot be an infinite regression of causes. Another approach is the watchmaker argument. Basically, evidence of design proves there must be a designer.

Romans 1: 20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.
Evidential is another method of approaching apologetics. This appeals to history, the sciences, fulfillment of biblical prophecy, resurrection of Christ, etc. as evidence for the veracity of scripture and Christianity.

We must always be aware of our audience, just as the apostles were in Acts, and know from which point the audience is starting from. When Peter preached to the Jews in Acts 2, he spoke to citizens of Jerusalem with a clear knowledge of the beginning, with a respect for the Old Testament already:

“But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words… this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel… Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know…For David speaketh concerning him…”

Do you see how Peter approached by appealing to their patriarchs and already accepted history? Now compare that to an Acts 17 culture:

“Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, To The Unknown God. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.”

Paul was speaking to Athenians here, steeped in an idolatrous polytheistic culture. It would have done Paul no good to start referring to Moses, and David, and the Ten Commandments. They had no frame of reference without first being introduced to who God was.

This is often the case in America today. In the 50’s and before, our western culture was one of Christian roots, and less apologetics had to be applied, because a biblical framework already existed. That isn’t so, today. By the admittance of even our own leaders, we are not a Christian nation, and the west certainly practices varied types of idolatry and religious inclusion that parallels the Acts 17 Athenians. Therefore, we must be prepared, as Paul was, to give a defense of our beliefs, and to lovingly guide others to the cross.

To join the conversation, please join and share at www.facebook.com/cooper.author 

For Excellent tutelage on apologetics, visit CARM.org/apologetics (Matt Slick)

“There is Only One Race” is Racist

“At the lowest stage of human mental development are the Australians, some tribes of the Polynesians, and the Bushmen, Hottentots, and some of the Negro tribes. Nothing, however, is perhaps more remarkable in this respect, than that some of the wildest tribes in southern Asia and eastern Africa have no trace whatever of the first foundations of all human civilization, of family life, and marriage. They live together in herds, like apes.”

Does reading that make you mad? It should, and righteously so. That is a quote from Ernst Haeckel, a German evolutionists I have covered briefly before. In doing so, I not only pointed out his affinity for horrible and fraudulent science, but also his influence on Hitler in promoting the idea of evolution and superior “races”.

Racism is an unfortunately prevalent issue as of late, as all types of crossfire ensue across many of America’s battlefields. These arguments play out on many stages, and take many forms, but like most of our problems, the reality is that it is a heart issue, a sin issue, and an issue that can be remedied with faith in God and His scriptures.

Many very personal testimonies exist that have dealt with this issue, and can make this subject touchy. Some experience personal turmoil. Others belong to an occupation, or people group that has been effected by racism. This article is not meant to belittle those experiences, but simply to say that with a proper understanding of Biblical Christianity, healing can take place in the heart of the believer in regards to this sin. But in order to do that, we must understand what the bible says about it.

Revelations 7:9-10:   After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.

What a tremendous victory that is waiting for followers of Christ, and illustrated clearly here, those victors do not share in the trite aesthetic qualifications that we who are in sin deem pertinent. Where in this victory are men separated from women? Or where do you see Haeckel’s offensive and absurd stance on certain people groups having evolved over others? Is skin tone mentioned? Does the amount of melanin  in skin determine where you stand when we arrive at the throne of grace? Does language? Does geography? No. Clearly what scripture teaches here is that none of these genetic variations that God designed in order that we may experience beautiful variety determines our brotherhood and sisterhood, or our importance when crying out to the Lamb who was slain for us.

If you feel that your rank in front of a holy God will be higher than that of a fellow believer based on your ancestry, or language, or people group, then you do not understand yet the extent of your sin, or how desperately you need grace. If you understood how judgement descended upon every nation at the flood; How every language origin was created at the Tower of Babel during the judgement of all; How every nation will endure the righteous judgement of God at the end, then you will conclude that you are not special, and have not been set apart based on anything so trivial as variety within a genome.

Now, in knowing this, and in studying genetics, it’s determined  that there is only one race, the human race. Biblically, we all came from the same 8 people on the ark that were spared 4500 years ago. This works perfectly with population growth charts, and also with present day archaeology. It was, unfortunately, science rather than the church who led the charge in stating this was a genetic certainty, despite the continued argument over origins. It is now considered fact that the term “race” is altogether worthless in describing any people group. But we give power to words that maybe they shouldn’t have. For instance, in the University of California, it is racist to state this fact:

[“There is only one race, the human race,” is offensive because it denies “the significance of a person of color’s racial/ethnic experience and history.”]

Among other banned phrases, such as, “America is the land of opportunity,” (implying that “People of color are lazy and/or incompetent and need to work harder”), and to say nothing of our freedom of speech, or growing tendency to be offended by everything, they have quite literally banned true statements, as proven by genetic science, or observation. This is not even a religious conclusion (though it is corroborated by the bible), and yet is banned as being deemed racist.

I would submit to the reader that Haeckel’s, and Darwin’s, and Hitler’s view on different people groups is extremely sinful, bigoted, and evil. I would further submit that you will be standing shoulder to shoulder with every tribe and beautiful variety of the world when you face death, either in judgement, or in victory. The question isn’t whether or not you will look like them on the outside. It is whether Jesus Christ the Lord of all is on the inside.

For more on race, please visit Answers in Genesis article.

But carbon dating puts it at 65 million years B.C??

I watched Transformers, Age of Extinction last night. A suspension of disbelief requires the viewer to accept evolution in many Hollywood films including this one, and although it makes me cringe, I still try to see past it and enjoy the movie. Hollywood has basically adopted evolution as a setting platform with which to launch ideas. This is certainly part of the constant barrage we and our kids endure in regards to evolution being forced down our throat. The flippant position that we are just a higher form of evolved animal is a mere matter-of-fact when presented by numerous books, shows, movies.  Many times without consideration, the phrase millions-of-years is flung about like a carelessly un-safetied weapon. The opening mention of the Cambrian explosion in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (with research, one clearly sees the so-called explosion is a great evolutionary weakness, as it contains every phyla already fully formed), Jurassic Park series, certainly anything with aliens, all bombard us with the notion that millions of years is fact.  But I find it laughable when the writers don’t at least do a minimal amount of research.

I have written a fiction that is full of apologetics, archaeology, and history, (will be published in spring-summer) and spent countless hours reading and studying in order to make it as truthfully accurate as possible. I believe the reader deserves that effort, and though I’m sure there are mistakes, it could hardly be said that I approached the material flippantly. So when I heard this quote in Age of Extinction, I jumped up to hit pause and blurted out an arm-flailing rant of disappointment that my poor wife had to sit through before being able to continue the movie.

“But carbon dating puts it at 65 million years B.C.” WHAT! Carbon dating what!

If you know nothing yet about carbon dating, or this doesn’t strike you as glaringly absurd, please see my article on Diamonds have Carbon to learn more.

Did the writer even try to come up with something intelligent to say here, to somehow connect the transformers with  a supposed dinosaur age? The answer is  an emphatic ‘NO’.

First, carbon is not used to date metal, as it is postulated in the movie.

Secondly, carbon dating becomes highly inaccurate after  a couple thousand years, and is only capable of dating things up to 50,000 or 60,000 years at the utmost (100,000 some say, but it’s suspect). Even if we presume a 100,000 year possibility for this dating method, they have made a 65,000% error.

Thirdly, if we are discussing 65,000,000 years in the past, why on God’s green earth are we referring to B.C.? Is it crucial to point out that the accuracy of the carbon dating that cannot detect anything over 60,000 years has placed this metal at a technical 65,002,016? As if adding the B.C. can now allow us to really get specific here?

And the line is delivered around top scientific minds in the movie, at an advanced research facility. And I watched closely, but at no time after this epic failure of scientific understanding was delivered did any of the surrounding genius lab-techs zoom in from stage left with the appropriately corrective flying slap to the face.

This may seem like a small deal to you, but what I see is an un-provable theory with vastly grave consequences that is proven to be so ingrained into the American psyche that a writer can espouse utter nonsense to support it with the full cooperation of the public. And as a child grows from age 5 to age 20, after the tens of thousands of references to it, he or she won’t know exactly why its true, or exactly how  its true, but they will be sure that evolution happened, a fact of life like water being wet. This means regardless of religion, we are only animals, that death brought about man, instead of man bringing death, and that the dying on the cross of a savior is of no consequence. This is the only conclusion, and it is why they will choose man over God in college, and will deny God, believing it is a waste of their time. Please don’t let these lines go unchallenged. There is no honor in being indoctrinated by ignorance.

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