Concluding Thoughts On Ten Things Christians Wish Jesus Hadn’t Taught

So what’s the verdict on this book? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Recently, I started reading for class a book on divine simplicity. Now whatever your thoughts are on the doctrine, I respect something the author, James Dolezal, did. At the start of the book, he takes a survey of many arguments from atheists and evangelicals and others AGAINST divine simplicity.

That means going in, he’s not giving you a one-sided case.

Unfortunately, evangelical atheists don’t know how to do that.

As I said, only one conservative source is quoted and the arguments aren’t even made from that source. Now you could be a fan of liberal New Testament scholarship, but even still, you should hopefully agree that if someone wants to present a case, they should show familiarity with the other side. Madison shouldn’t be able to just say “I have a PhD.” He needs to show he has interacted with the material.

I bring this up because as we finish this book, we find more of the same kinds of arguments.

So let’s see. One thing thrown out suddenly is the idea of 30,000 denominations. I always like to refer to this source on that because this is an argument non-Protestant forms of Christianity often use, and yet here there is a Catholic source saying it’s bogus. He’s right. Bad arguments are bad arguments even if the cause they are arguing for is true. (And no, I don’t agree with Catholicism or Orthodoxy, but that’s not the point here.)

Then we have him giving Tim Sledge’s argument of “Why didn’t Jesus say anything about germs?”

Yeah. Try to picture how you would say something about microscopic beings that you couldn’t even see back in Jesus’s day and how that would be passed on. Besides that, water quality wasn’t exactly the best. It could be washing your hands could do more harm than good at times and who knows how many people had access to good means of cleaning?

No. Jesus gave us Himself instead which led to the scientific revolution. It is quite strange to say “Jesus didn’t speak on what I wanted Him to speak on, therefore I won’t believe in Him.” It’s also a way to avoid evidence to the contrary. Just say Jesus didn’t speak on X, therefore, I don’t need to listen to anything else. Such people do not really care about evidence.

Madison also encourages Christians to study the work of serious scholars, devout and secular alike. Well, I have. I’m still convinced. It doesn’t look like Madison has really done that. I see some secular scholarship, but a lot of his sources are not scholars and as I said earlier, he only briefly references one “devout” source of scholarship.

Physician, heal thyself.

So in the end, the conclusion is not a shock. Madison is someone who chooses the flimsiest of arguments that could easily be answered if he really wanted to have them answered. I don’t mind that Jesus taught any of the things Madison brings up, at least not in the same way, but I am thankful that I have tried to follow something Paul taught and I wish that Madison had.

Study to show yourself approved, a workman that needs not be ashamed.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

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