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Challenge for a Friend by Merwin

Updated on May 29, 2010

Facts and Faith

(This was the latest entry in our exchange)

Yes... I did not think you would do this.

I know you have come to where you are at thoughtfully, carefully, and analytically. Absolutely, no doubt in my mind.

However, what I was suggesting (again I don't think you'll do it) is for you to take your voluminous cache of information and investigative skills that purchased that cache, and employ them to the task of arguing the other side of the debate.

And, herein lays the kicker... to do this you cannot ignore what you now know, it must be employed as well.

Kind of like playing chess against yourself with the expectation of winning.

Granted this is an immense intellectual challenge... but of all the people I have encountered you seem to be one who could accomplish it, for you are too fair minded to cheat.

You say you started out wearing the gauntlet and I believe the analogy to be accurate, take it one step further and take off your own glove, smack yourself in the face, and hurl it to the turf.

You suggested that there is a need for someone to talk to the atheist who needs Christ, you thought it was me, I think it is you.

I know however that preterism is nonsense it could never have been that way... because it isn't that way. I have quoted MythBusters before I will do it again here... "Well there's your problem, right there."

If I had been a preterist and knowing now, the evidence that is audaciously obvious... and, having started as a premillennialist... well, where your at is understandable, wrong, but understandable.

Nevermind my opinion of your position.

The challenge is a valid one, and truly, it would have to be your gauntlet... your ownership of the obscession that would keep you on track and honest in diligence.

You tapped me to talk to the atheists who you recognize as possibly having a need for Christ. I know the reason... it is because I have faith you don't have.

Understandable, wrong, but understandable.

An atheist may be impressed by a moderately intelligent, strong believer's faith enough to suggest that person to a needy, unbelieving friend as a source whereby he might find his way to faith. Again, understandable.

But... (I know I am not supposed to start a sentence with a "But" but...) the analytical mind does not necessarily want a display of faith as much as he may require a presentation of information that he may wrap his thinking nugget around.

Things that can gestalt his conscious person into saying AH, SO... now it makes sense.

Preterism can not do that, for it is nonsense.

The only believer's model that can apply to history (His - story) is that of premillennialism. It works and preterism does not.

And specifically that is why I suggested your challenge. Not so that you would be converted... (honestly I don't care, that is between you and God) but so that you could be the presenter of the facts as you see them whether or not you believe them for yourself, to those you see in need. ("Whosoever gives a drink of water to a prophet will receive a prophet's reward.")

For this to be done properly, honestly, credibly... it must be attacked in scientific methodology. It must be gone after, as though you are attempting to disprove everything, that is your current foundation for unbelief.

So... you have your challenge, you have your chessboard, I don't think you'll play.


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    • dusy7969 profile image


      7 years ago from San Diego, California

      nice work.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I need to stop responding to asides, as that response -- however brief -- seems inevitably to become the focus.

    • CoauthorU profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA

      My friend I will gladly discuss Christ with anyone that expresses a desire to hear or read what I may have to say on the matter.

      Will my focus be on converting the person? No.

      Will what I may have to say on the issues bare meaning in their lives? It is not for me to assess or even care.

      I feel that whatever I say... even gibberish, may find its annointing in the purposes of God. And my most eloquent emissions be as gibberish to everyone else.

      What I have, that in my estimation, may have a positive impact, is the presence of the Most High. If He does not annoint my words, I can gaurantee they will have the value of dung to everyone exposed.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      You dismiss preterism as if your dismissal alone establishes its invalidity.

      I started out as a premillennialist and segued into preterism. As I exited Christianity, I was on the brink of deciding that the prophecies of John of Patmos had been purely symbolic.

      Although I am now a non-theist who doesn't believe in prophecy at all, I have maintained an academic interest in the various eschatological viewpoints of Christianity, preterism and premillennialism included.

      I presented a list of recommended reading in a previous hub -- all relatively recent works that cogently argue the preterist position. I only recommend books that I have read and consider sound.

      If you don't have the time to read all of them, then I strongly encourage you to watch this series of YouTube videos:

      As for your challenge, I decline, as you expected I would.

      I do believe that some atheists would be better off as Christians, but that isn't a job for me.

      That job requires someone with a respectful understanding of the nuances of atheism who is also a Christian. I am only the first of those things.

    • profile image

      Roger Crigger 

      8 years ago

      ... If he does... He'll be greatly effective, He can already head the questions off at the pass before they are ever asked! And, He knows which queries and in what sequence they will be presented! A fair challenge... yes... a fair challenge!


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