Continued from yesterday. Observations concerning witnessing to atheists based on the debate between Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron vs Atheists Brian Sapient and "Kelly" as screened on ABC Nightline. Ray and Kirk were widely criticized by many Christians for not pulling out the heavy apologetic artillery in fighting the cause of the existence of God. But is that criticism biblically informed. In the following days I will be publishing five observations concerning the debate and how we should evangelize atheists. Here is my third observation:
The atheist already has knowledge of God but suppresses it in unrighteousness.
It is worth asking ourselves the question at this point as to whether it is a worthwhile exercise investing time in dazzling the unbeliever with wizz bang apologetics concerning God's existence when the issue is not one of knowledge but of sin.
Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them.
Rom 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:
Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
These verses from Romans 1 tell us "that which may be known of God is manifest" in the unbeliever "for God hath shown it unto them". They are holding "the truth in unrighteousness". And what is it that testifies God's existence to sinful men? Verse 20 tells us the answer. The "invisible" things of God are "clearly seen" in God's creation "even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse". Put simply, the creation compellingly testifies to the Creator God Himself. My disappointment with Ray and Kirk in using the argument of creation instead of "deeper and more profound apologetics" was one of biblical ignorance on my part (it is interesting to not that some atheists did call in to talk back radio after the debate and concede that they did find the creation argument compelling). It is clear to me that Ray and Kirk showed great wisdom in realising that the atheist already has knowledge of God's existence and time is better spent trying to awaken this knowledge rather than try and win an argument with him. Because the atheist's problem is not a lack of proof concerning God's existence, but rather one of human pride and a love of sin. Understanding this has helped enormously with my witnessing activities because I have stopped wasting time arguing over God's existence and spent time trying to awaken the unbelievers conscience through God's moral law that brings the knowledge of sin which leads to my next observation.
Continued Tomorrow - Observation 4
Go On To Part 5
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