September 17, 2006

I was recently discussing the resurrection with an agnostic friend of mine. I presented what I considered to be the best historical argument for the resurrection of Jesus, but it of course obviously failed to be convincing because there is no room in her worldview for the possibility of a dead man coming back to life. Is debating such things actually futile? Can a person’s worldview be changed apart from the Holy Spirit? And why do I allow the possibility within my worldview?

6 Responses to “Futility”

  1. Byron Says:

    Can a person’s worldview be changed apart from the Holy Spirit?
    Probably not, but maybe the HS will use you to do it!

  2. Q Says:

    Can a person’s worldview be changed apart from the Holy Spirit?

    The biblical answer to that question is, No (Mt. 11:25; Mt. 16:17; Acts 16:14; cf. 2Co. 4:4).

    It’s good to maintain a distinction between apologetics and evangelism. The kind of argument you probably used is good apologetics: i.e., to demonstrate that it is not unreasonable to have Christian faith, contrary to the sceptical, materialistic worldview.

    I can’t say what makes for good evangelism, because (regrettably) I’m a terrible evangelist! But when Paul writes, “we implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God” (2Co. 5:20), I think it’s correct to conclude that there’s an emotional element to the appeal that is missing in most apologetics.

  3. brandalf85 Says:

    As I said before Rob: Rockets and grenades, those should change their opinions very quickly! 🙂

  4. Rob Says:

    You’d make a good radical muslim, Brandon.

  5. Byron Says:

    The freedom to repent is the fundamental human freedom. This is a very important insight from Oliver O’Donovan, with all kinds of implications. At the very least, we need to allow ourselves and others to have been wrong. Only so can there be forgiveness and healing after conflict.

  6. Will Says:

    “Can a person’s worldview be changed apart from the Holy Spirit?”

    Ummm…no. But I think your friends have already told you that.
    But what you’re doing doesn’t contradict that. I look at evangelism (if that’s the right word) as divine alley-oop. From what I know about God and the Gospel, I throw a ball up in front of an unbeliever. If God wants to dunk it, he can. But that doesn’t mean he will. And he can certainly dunk the ball without my even being there. But ya know, when I throw a ball up in the presence of an unbeliever, it gives them a little more evidence that the Holy Spirit can ignite into meaning.

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