Saturday, August 24, 2013

Ten Questions Christians Can’t Answer

Joseph Herrin (08-24-2013)

As I was doing some research on the Internet today, I came across a video titled Ten Questions Christians Can’t Answer! The video was made by an individual who holds the view that Christianity is false, and that the Bible contains many glaring errors. I decided to take a look and see what these impossible questions might be. I did not find any of them to be unanswerable, though I suspect that the video’s creator would not like some of the answers.

As I read through some of the comments after the video I found that most “Christians” who were commenting were doing a poor job of answering any, or all, of the questions. Therefore, I have to conclude that the title of the video is largely accurate. Most Christians cannot answer challenges to their faith. A great many Christians do not know their Bibles.

What I decided to do was to take the first question and provide an answer to it. I will then list the remaining nine questions, and invite the readers of this blog to submit an answer to one of them, or more than one if you are so inclined. I will then choose the best answer(s) for each question and post them in an upcoming blog. If you want to view the video yourself before submitting an answer, you can find it below.

Following is question #1 from this video, followed by my answer.

Question #1: When Noah’s ark landed, how did the kangaroos make it back to Australia?

Joseph’s Answer: The Bible declares that the continents were divided AFTER the flood.

Genesis 10:25
And two sons were born to Eber; the name of the one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided...

Chapters 6-9 of the book of Genesis recount the story of Noah. In chapter ten we find a genealogy of nations that resulted from the three sons of Noah. This section is often called “the table of nations.” Chapter 10 of Genesis tells us that Peleg was a descendant of Shem, one of the sons of Noah. Peleg was born four generations after Shem. The Bible provides an exact time-line in Genesis chapter 11, verses 10-19. We are told the following:

Shem was one hundred years old, and became the father of Arpachshad two years after the flood...

Arpachshad lived thirty-five years, and became the father of Shelah...

Shelah lived thirty years, and became the father of Eber...

Eber lived thirty-four years, and became the father of Peleg...

Peleg lived thirty years, and became the father of Reu; and Peleg lived two hundred and nine years after he became the father of Reu, and he had other sons and daughters.

Adding 2 years plus 35 years plus 30 years plus 34 years we arrive at Peleg who was born 101 years after the flood. Peleg lived 239 years, so sometime in the second, third, or early part of the fourth century after the flood of Noah, the earth was divided. This was plenty of time for the animals Noah brought onto the ark to multiply and disperse across the face of the earth before the earth was divided.

Both the Bible and science agree that the earth used to be one super-continent. This continent is often referred to by geologists as Pangea, or Pangaea. This name is derived from the Greek “Pan” meaning “entire,” and “Gaia” meaning “earth.” Following is an animation of what the separation of the continents is envisioned to have looked like.

Science often develops theories that contradict the narrative of the Bible, particularly when it comes to the span of time in which an event took place. For example, science would say that languages developed over thousands of years when the Bible says that the different languages came into existence suddenly at the Tower of Babel when Yahweh confused the languages of men and divided them into families. Similarly, science says that continental drift began about 200 million years ago and that the continents drifted apart over the course of millions of years. The Bible, however, states that there was a single landmass as recently as 4,500 years ago, and the earth was divided into continents rapidly.

Although present scientific theories differ widely from the Biblical account on WHEN the continents were divided, scientific theory and the Bible agree that all the continents were previously joined together. This explains how kangaroos were able to travel from Mt. Ararat to Australia after the flood of Noah. Science refers to the movement of the earth’s landmass as “Continental Drift Theory.”

Science assumes that this drifting apart of the continents occurred over the course of millions of years. They base this upon observations of the speed at which the continents are moving today. This theory includes a big assumption, however. The assumption is that the continents always moved at the slow rate that is observed today. The Bible differs from the theories of man in that it says that the earth was divided quite suddenly. We are told that the separation of the continents occurred during the days of Peleg.

As I mentioned, those who seek to dispute the accuracy of the Scriptures, may not like the answer provided. Yet, the Bible does provide answers. Christians should not be daunted when they are faced with a seemingly impossible question relating to Biblical teaching. We have the mind of Christ, and Christ has never been stumped by the questions of critics. (See Matthew 22:23-33)

Here now are the other nine questions presented on this video. If you choose to submit an answer, please consider whether the question accurately reflects what the Bible teaches, or if the question is itself a misrepresentation of Bible truth. Also consider why the speaker is asking these particular questions so you can identify why he believes a Christian cannot answer the question honestly and accurately. I also ask that you submit your answers via e-mail, rather than through the comment field on this blog. They will be much easier for me to handle that way.

Question #2: If the ark was covered in pitch, or tar, to make it watertight, it also made it airtight. How did the animals survive more than one or two days, living in complete darkness without any fresh air? Remember, the rain lasted forty days and forty nights. Noah couldn’t open the window in the top.

Question #3: Since Adam and Eve didn’t know right from wrong before eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, why did God then punish them for something they didn’t understand they were doing?

Question #4: Why would God place a forbidden tree in the garden so close to His innocent creation, and allow Satan to tempt them into eating from it, all the while looking on without doing a thing to prevent it?

Question #5: When the women went to Jesus’ empty tomb, was the stone already rolled away, or did an angel roll it away after the women got there?

Question #6: On the first day of the week, when Jesus rose from the dead, how many women went to the tomb, and which ones?

Question #7: If you believe the creation account in Genesis is mere allegory, then why don’t you throw out Paul’s epistles, because he believed that the creation account was a historical fact?

Question #8: How many donkeys did Jesus ride on His triumphal entry into Jerusalem? Was it one donkey, like Mark, Luke and John say, or was it two donkeys like Matthew said?

Question #9: Matthew and Luke both provide genealogies for Jesus, going all the way back to Adam. Using both of those lists, who was Joseph’s father?

Question #10: Was Jesus crucified on the first day of Passover like the gospel of John says, or the next day, like the other three gospels say?

Note: I will be continuing with the series Push Back as I hope to bring it to completion soon. 

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Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063


Livingwalk said...

Bro Joseph - Although there are indeed certain responses to such questions, I believe is one wishes to approach the veracity of the Bible from such a purely rational and natural approach, there are many more than 10 questions that defy an answer. Yes Noah was to build a window in the ark, but there are so many more issues than this - the entire account requires the hand of the creator - the actual construction of the ark, animals arrived of their own accord, the rain fell to such a depth, the maintenance of an estimate 16,000 creatures by so few, the disposal of waste, etc.

My point is why even ask or respond to such questions - ultimately one must come by faith, as a little child, then yes perhaps the Lord will grant insight into such difficult matters.

The ark points spiritually to Christ, to being in the One that can save us from the death outside, it is no less a miracle when a human being comes into Christ than when Noah and his family entered the ark.

Once in Christ, we cannot even breathe without Him, He is now our sustenance and vitality in the New Creation. To live is Christ, said Paul. He is the light entering into our soul from the heavenly window, He is our fortress and protection from the judgment of God being wrought outside the door. "I am the gate" He told us. "Abide in Me"

Any attempt to answer these questions without pointing to their ultimate spiritual meaning is a fools game. Such questions are designed to reduce us to mere natural arguments and reason, which can never be the basis of coming to Christ and entering into Him as life.

Joseph Herrin said...

Hello Brother Wayne (Living Walk),

Your have raised a valid objection to answering the questions of the unlearned and ignorant. Christ exhorted His disciples to not give what is holy to dogs, nor to cast pearls before swine. Swine have no appreciation, or desire, for pearls, even as some men have no appetite for truth. They will merely trample truth under foot, and engage in vain wrangling over words.

At the same time, there is a very real place for apologetics, and for answering the arguments of those who oppose the truth. We read of Christ doing so in the Gospels. An example is when the Sadducees asked Him who a woman would be married to in the resurrection since she had several husbands while on earth. We also read of numerous men in the New Testament who were praised for being able to use the Scriptures powerfully to refute those who opposed the truth.

Acts 6:9-10
But some men from what was called the Synagogue of the Freedmen, including both Cyrenians and Alexandrians, and some from Cilicia and Asia, rose up and argued with Stephen. And yet they were unable to cope with the wisdom and the Spirit with which he was speaking.

Acts 9:19-22
Now for several days he was with the disciples who were at Damascus, and immediately he began to proclaim Yahshua in the synagogues, saying, "He is the Son of God..." Saul kept increasing in strength and confounding the Jews who lived at Damascus by proving that this Yahshua is the Christ.

Acts 18:24, 28
Now a certain Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by birth, an eloquent man, came to Ephesus; and he was mighty in the Scriptures... for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, demonstrating by the Scriptures that Yahshua was the Christ.


Joseph Herrin said...

To Brother Wayne - continued...

I wrote the following to a sister in Christ who submitted answers to the questions posed.

One of the purposes I proposed this exercise is to see whether the saints can give a defense of the Scriptures. It is my hope that in doing so Christians might be challenged to consider whether they have "studied to show themselves approved unto God, a workman that need not be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth." It is to demonstrate whether the saints can handle the arguments and opposition of unbelievers...

We should strive to speak with intelligence and wisdom, skillfully using the Scriptures to refute those who stand in opposition to the truth.
[End Excerpt]

Brother Wayne, it has been my observation that most Christians do not study the word of God. They are falling short of the standard of being a skillful workman. How will such ones stand in a day of great deception where we are told that “if possible even the elect will be deceived”? The purpose of my invitation is NOT to engage the saints in vain discussion, but rather to reveal their ability to answer relatively simple objections to the Scriptures. I would suggest that being able to do so holds great value.

The recent series I am posting on homosexuality reveals how few Christians are properly grounded in the Scriptures. Many have been swayed by the arguments of the unregenerate, concluding that Christians should not judge, and that love requires that Christians embrace unrepentant sinners and tolerate all manner of wicked behavior. Christians should be able to see the error of such arguments, and be able to refute them using the Scriptures as their authority. Yet, few are able, or willing, to do so.

If this little exercise can reveal to some believers that they lack the ability to refute a skeptic who is raising trite, or petty, arguments based upon the testimony of the Scriptures, and stimulate some to stir themselves up to pay greater heed to gaining skill in handling the word of truth, then I will deem it to have been profitable.

May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days.

Anonymous said...

Thank you and amen.