Is the final objection from a critic really that powerful? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters!
We’re going to be looking at the final claims of a critic. One major argument will be dealt with as well as some bonus arguments. Let’s look at the first one.
“7)…100% FACT: no on duty judge, jury, prosecutor, defense attorney, or court would accept what we have of the gospels as evidence for anyone in the bible …RED FLAG!!!!”
None whatsoever? This must be news to lawyers and attorneys and such who are Christians and it would have been news to legal writers of the past and of the present who treat the gospels from a legal standpoint. There is an entire field of legal apologetics. An excellent example of that can be found here.
Of course, the main deal is that these are not legal documents but are historical documents and therefore should be treated by the standards of history. How will a historian look at the claim? Our critic unfortunately has no clue on such a topic. Let’s see this further by looking at the bonus facts.
“Bonus 100% FACT: the Jewish Dead Sea Scrolls (written before, during, and after 4 BCE to 30 AD) knows nothing of the NT Jesus or his disciples (the NT Jesus simply don’t exist in them) …RED FLAG!!!! ”
This is not news to anyone. Why should the Qumran community care about someone going through the “pagan” territory (seeing as they didn’t care anything for the temple complex) and supposedly being the Messiah? Since he was executed on a cross, that’s all the more reason to not waste time with him.
“Bonus 100% FACT: 4 BCE to 30 AD, worldwide, (far as what we have in our hands) is void of the NT Jesus …RED FLAG!!!!”
And very little of ancient history is written while the person being written about is still alive. Again, why should anyone have written anything when oral communication worked so well to get the word out seeing as few people could read?
What can we say about all of this in reply?
It is often said that Christians are too often ignorant of their faith and believe blindly. I agree. Yet let it not be said that atheists are not often in the same boat. Some here might be surprised to think that our critic thinks he is so powerful that he can take on names like Habermas, Licona, Zacharias, Copan, etc. One might speak aught against these people all one wants, but one should be willing to grant they at least have some knowledge of what they speak.
A little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing. Unfortunately in our day and age, everyone on the internet thinks they’re an expert. Anyone can write a blog and anyone can make a YouTube channel and be seen as an authority.
Some might say that I have a blog and I have a show.
That is true.
Do I think I know what I’m talking about? Yep. I do. Personally, I think everyone does or else they wouldn’t talk about it.
I ask that you be willing to check what I say. In fact, I can guarantee you some things you read on my blog or hear on my show will be incorrect. Why? Because I’m not perfect. I’m bound to make some mistakes from time to time. No scholar out there is infallible. I dare not suggest to you that you treat my writings the way Scripture should be.
That is a key difference. Someone who cares about truth is open to being wrong and does real research before making a claim. I strongly suspect most atheists I encounter online have not really read the other side that much nor do they make the questions in seeking answers. They only want to embarrass.
Lesson for today. Don’t be like this critic. If you want to be an atheist, be an atheist! Just be informed in your atheism. I in fact have more respect for an informed atheist than I do an uninformed Christian. At least the atheist I am sure is taking the issues seriously.
Do the same. Take the issues seriously and know whichever side you fall on, you know why you have and can make a case why that does actually interact with the other side.
JPH’s treatment of this can be found here.