A Reasonable Faith (“Christianity: Unscientific, Corrupt & Intolerant?”)

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A Reasonable Faith (Christianity: Unscientific, Corrupt & Intolerant?). 1 st August 2010 Central Baptist Church, Dundee. Paul before Agrippa (Acts 26v25). v7 Shared belief in God. v27 Do you believe the prophets?. v3 Jewish custom & tradition. PAUL. AGRIPPA. GENERAL REVELATION. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • A Reasonable Faith (Christianity: Unscientific, Corrupt & Intolerant?)1st August 2010Central Baptist Church, Dundee

  • Paul before Agrippa (Acts 26v25)GENERAL REVELATIONSPECIAL REVELATIONSHARED CULTURALVALUESPAULAGRIPPAv7 Shared belief in Godv27 Do you believe the prophets?v3 Jewish custom & tradition

  • Us before our societyGENERAL REVELATIONSPECIAL REVELATIONSHARED CULTURALVALUESUSSociety

  • Facing our barriersGENERAL REVELATIONSPECIAL REVELATIONSHARED CULTURALVALUESUSSocietyUNSCIENTIFICCORRUPTINTOLERANT

  • A Reasonable FaithUnscientific? - The General Revelation ChasmDiversity, Complexity, Similarity, History

    Corrupt?- The Special Revelation ChasmAuthorship, Accuracy, Accreditation

    Intolerant? - The Cultural ChasmGood, Bad, Excessive & Competing Worldviews

  • Unscientific?I think that if the data is overwhelmingly in favour, in favour of evolution, to deny that reality will make us a cult, some odd group thats not really interacting with the real worldTo deny the reality would be to deny the truth of God in the world and that would be to deny truthalso our spiritual death in witness to the world that were not credible, that we are bigoted, we have a blind faith and this is what were accused ofI think its essential to us or well end up like some small sect somewhere that retained a certain dress or a certain language. And they end up so marginalised, totally marginalised, and I think that would be a great tragedy for the church, for us to become marginalised in that way. (Christian Theology Professor, April 2010)

  • Unscientific?Everywhere you look in nature, you can see evidence of natural selection at work in the adaptation of species to their environment. Surprisingly though, natural selection may have little role to play in one of the key steps of evolution the origin of new species. Instead it would appear that speciation is merely an accident of fateBut there is an irony in Darwins choice of title: his book did not explore what actually triggers the formation of a new species. Others have since grappled with the problem of how one species becomes two, and with the benefit of genetic insight, which Darwin lacked, you might think they would have cracked it. Not so. Speciation still remains one of the biggest mysteries in evolutionary biology (New Scientist, 13th March 2010)

  • A Reasonable FaithUnscientific? - The General Revelation ChasmDiversity, Complexity, Similarity, History

    Corrupt?- The Special Revelation ChasmAuthorship, Accuracy, Accreditation

    Intolerant? - The Cultural ChasmGood, Bad, Excessive & Competing Worldviews

  • Corrupt?The fact that something is written down is persuasive to people not used to asking questions like Who wrote it, and when?, How did they know what to write?, Did they, in their time, really mean what we, in our time, understand them to be saying? Were they unbiased observers, or did they have an agenda that coloured their writing? Ever since the nineteenth century, scholarly theologians have made an overwhelming case that the gospels are not reliable accounts of what happened in the history of the real world. All were written long after the death of Jesus, and also after the epistles of Paul, which mention almost none of the alleged facts of Jesus life. All were then copied and recopied, through many different Chinese Whispers generations by fallible scribes who, in any case, had their own religious agendas. The four gospels that made it into the official canon were chosen, more or less arbitrarily, out of a larger sample of at least a dozen (Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion)

  • Corrupt?Constantine commissioned and financed a new bible, which omitted those gospels that spoke of Christs human traits and embellished those gospels that made him godlike. The earlier gospels were outlawed, gathered up, and burnedThe modern bible was compiled and edited by men who possessed a political agenda to promote the divinity of the man Jesus Christ and use his influence to solidify their own power base(Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code, cont)

  • Corrupt?My dear Teabing declared, until that moment in history, Jesus was viewed by his followers as a mortal propheta great and powerful man, but a man nonetheless. A mortal. Not the Son of God?Right, Teabing said. Jesus establishment as the Son of God was officially proposed and voted on by the Council of Nicaea.Hold on, Youre saying that Jesus divinity was the result of a vote?A relatively close vote at that, Teabing addedIt was all about power, Teabing continued. Christ as Messiah was critical to the functioning of Church and state. Many scholars claim that the early Church literally stole Jesus from his original followers, hijacking his human message, shrouding it with an impenetrable cloak of divinity, and using it to expand their own power (Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code)

  • Corrupt?

  • Corrupt?

  • Corrupt?Constantine did not unify Rome under the single religion of Christianity in AD 325. It did not become the official religion until Emperor Theodosius at end of fourth century.There were not >80 gospels that taught the original history of Jesus as a mere mortal, so Constantine couldnt have destroyed them.By the time of the council of Nicea in AD 325 Christians were already in broad agreement about which books were genuine and ought to be read as holy scripture in the churches.There was never really any doubt that the books called Matthew, Mark, Luke and John contained the true account of Jesus.(Greg Clarke, Is It Worth Believing? The Spiritual Challenge of the Da Vinci Code, cont)

  • Corrupt?Constantine did not collate, commission and finance a new bible. He did commission the distribution of scriptures that were already authenticated by the church.The Council of Nicaea did not vote on whether or not Jesus was divine. Jesus was already worshipped as more than a human from the early years after his death and resurrection. The Council did discuss the views of a priest called Arius, who was arguing that Jesus wasnt fully God, just a bit like God.The Council decided Arius was wrong in a landslide of 298 2. (Greg Clarke, Is It Worth Believing? The Spiritual Challenge of the Da Vinci Code)

  • A Reasonable FaithUnscientific? - The General Revelation ChasmDiversity, Complexity, Similarity, History

    Corrupt?- The Special Revelation ChasmAuthorship, Accuracy, Accreditation

    Intolerant? - The Cultural ChasmGood, Bad, Excessive & Competing Worldviews

  • Reaching our society

    GENERAL REVELATION

    SPECIAL REVELATION

    SHARED CULTURALVALUESUSSocietyCREDIBLERELIABLECOMPASSIONATE

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