10 Minute Apologetics

Christianity, History, and Verification

By L. Alfred James “How do you know the stories in the Bible weren’t just written by some dude in a cave who was on drugs, or hallucinating, or just made them up?” I have been asked this question more times than I can count. It is a reasonable question, and it has been thoroughly addressed elsewhere. (For instance, Josh McDowell’s book He Walked Among Us or Holden and Geisler’s Popular Handbook of Archaeology and the Bible are both excellent starting points.) It is not a subject I can adequately … Read More »

Ishmaelites in the Old Testament – Part 5

By Elysia McColley So far in this series about Ishmael, we have looked at two prominent Old Testament figures – Job and Jethro – who were not Israelites and may have actually been Ishmaelites, or descendants of Abraham through his oldest son, Ishmael. There are several other Old Testament figures who may have been Ishmaelites, such as Agar and Lemuel, two kings who contributed to the book of Proverbs. Here, I want to look at someone who was possibly the most significant Ishmaelite in the Bible because of her role … Read More »

Scoffing as a Substitute for Sound Argumentation

By Elias Ayala (MDiv & M.A.T.) A scoffer is someone who jeers or mocks or treats something with contempt or calls it out in derision. Notice that sound argumentation has no part in this definition. The ability to scoff at an argument is not equal to a logical and rational argument against someone’s position. Often times scoffing is a cheap substitute for rational argumentation. As Christian apologists and rational thinkers we need to be careful not to be persuaded by cheap emotional debating tricks. When we present arguments in favor … Read More »

Demonic Phenomena and Christianity

By L. Alfred James “I’ve got a spirit that appears to me almost every night. It takes on the form of my grandma. It totally pretends to be my grandma, and I used to actually believe it was my grandma,…for, like, 20 years. But now I’m pretty sure it isn’t, and I want it to go away. But I don’t know what to do.” The guy sitting in my office was very intelligent, level-headed, and admitted that his whole story probably sounded utterly bizarre. Nonetheless, he was as serious as … Read More »

What Is The Bible?

By Elysia McColley If you are somewhat new to Christianity, or even if you have been a Christian for most of your life, you may have some questions about the Bible. It is a massive book, with approximately 800,000 words! Just for comparison, War and Peace has about 587,000 words, and Les Miserables has about 655,000 words. Many people spend their entire academic lives, all the way up to doctorate degrees and postdoctoral research, trying to understand the Bible, and there is plenty left for them to figure out. If … Read More »

The Usefulness of Identifying Self Refuting Statements

By Elias Ayala (MDiv & M.A.T.) Anything self refuting is false and so I would imagine it is easy to see why being able to identify self refuting statements would be important not only to apologetics but clear thinking in general. Suppose a skeptic objects to Christianity, but his reasoning for doing so is logically incoherent. It would be very helpful to be able to identify the logical incoherency or self refuting nature of the objection and address it from a more logical standpoint. This would at least help the … Read More »

Is God Just An Impersonal Force?

By L. Alfred James Most people suspect that there is some kind of supernatural realm that transcends this physical universe. In the past couple of weeks we’ve seen several lines of evidence that confirm these suspicions. However, we have not yet addressed a huge question that is dying to be answered: What kind of supernatural realm exists? Should we believe that there is a personal God, a being who has thoughts, feelings, and free-will like us? Or is the supernatural realm primarily occupied by spiritual forces like Karma, luck, fate, … Read More »

Jesus and Samaritans – Part 2

By Elysia McColley Read “Jesus and Samaritans – Part 1” “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” If you are familiar with Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan, you may recognize that the above question was posed by an expert in the law just before Jesus told the parable. The parable was meant to answer the expert’s next question: who is my neighbor? I won’t recount the parable of the Good Samaritan here, but for reference, it is found in Luke 10:25-37. My last post showed that Samaritanism … Read More »

Fairies, God, and the Cause of the Universe

By Elias Ayala (MDiv & M.A.T.) Christians affirm that God brought the universe into existence ex nihilo (out of nothing). According to the biblical narrative, God did not create the universe out of pre-existing stuff. As the creator of the universe, God is not a being who exists within the universe, that is to say that God transcends the universe. He does not take up space within the universe. He must transcend the universe because He created the universe. As creator of the universe God is not composed of anything … Read More »

Life Is Unsatisfying: A Reason to Believe

By L. Alfred James Have you ever noticed how unsatisfying most pleasures in life are?1 To be sure, while we are anticipating some particular pleasure, while it remains in the future, our expectation makes it seem like it will be great, perhaps completely fulfilling. However, once we actually experience said pleasure the fulfillment (if there is any at all) is very short-lived. This is the undisputed pattern of life. But why? Why is this? Consider your own life and the lives of your friends: Before you married that person you … Read More »