Wednesday, December 31, 2008

With the New Year upon us, I believe it's important to focus on Who the coming year should be about.

Jill Carattini of RZIM encourages us to reflect upon Jesus and our relationship with Him.

Check it out here.

Have a blessed New Year!

Courage and Godspeed,

Chad A. Gross

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Just wanted to take a moment and wish everyone a Merry Christmas!

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Example of Dr. Gary Habermas

Dr. Gary Habermas is a recognized authority on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He has twenty-five books to his credit and has also authored over one hundred articles in journals and magazines across the nation.

Some of Habermas's more well-known works include The Case for the Resurrection (pictured), co-authored with New Testament scholar Mike Licona, The Historical Jesus, and The Risen Jesus and Future Hope.

Dr. Habermas has debated unbelievers such as former atheist Anthony Flew, skeptic Tim Callahan, and even more recently, atheist Kenneth Humphreys. Each debate and/or discussion (depending on the format) dealt with the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

As impressive as Habermas's credentials and accomplishments are, it's his kind and gentle attitude that is the subject of this post.

Dr. Habermas's friendship with former atheist Anthony Flew is well documented. Further, skeptic John Loftus, in a blog post, said of Habermas after meeting him at an apologetic conference:

"Probably the most interesting friendship I struck up was with Gary Habermas. He is unlike what I expected, although I don't know why I expected anything different. He was warm, witty, funny, and genuinely friendly toward me. He does not think he has any kind of notch on his belt for helping Antony Flew change his mind, and he openly admits Flew is a long way from Christianity. He says they talk all of the time. I believe he really is a great guy and enjoys people with no ulterior motive."

Additionally, while listening to the debate between Dr. Habermas and Kenneth Humphreys, Habermas commented on his friendship with skeptic Robert Price.

Admittedly, Christians to many times forget just Who they are representing while sharing their faith with those of different worldviews. I believe that Dr. Habermas's example of loving people were they are is one that all Christians should aspire to follow.

Dr. Habermas and Mike Licona, in their book The Case for the Resurrection, remind us of how we should approach those with questions and objections:

"The Bible teaches us about the attitude we should have while sharing our faith. Consider the following verses:

  • "A gentle answer turns away wrath. But a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise makes knowledge acceptable (Prov. 15:1-2a).

  • Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should respond to each person (Col. 4:6).

  • And the Lord's bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will (2 Tim. 2:24-26).

  • But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence (1 Peter 3:15).

  • Have mercy on some, who are doubting (Jude 22).

Notice that God urges us to be kind, gentle, and merciful toward those who hold views other than our own.)" [1]

It has been well said that the only Bible some will ever see, is the one being lived out in front of them.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

1. Dr. Gary Habermas and Mike Licona, The Case for the Resurrection, p. 192-193.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Our Dramatic Example- Jesus Christ

"People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy."

It is with these words that billionaire Bruce Wayne (played by actor Christian Bale) decides to bring Gotham City back from the depths of crime and despair. Hence, Batman is born.

Many have called the crucifixion of Jesus Christ grotesque, brutal, and immoral. However, one wonders if God knew that He too needed a "dramatic example" to shake His people out of their apathy.

"For God so loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him" (John 3:16-17).

Brutal? For sure. Grotesque? Absolutely. Dramatic? Without a doubt.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

"How Can We Know Anything about the Real Jesus?" by Mark D. Roberts

Pastor Mark D. Roberts, author of Jesus Reveled: A Historical and Practical look at Jesus, presents what can be know, beyond reasonable doubt, about the historical Jesus in this article, "How Can We Know Anything about the Real Jesus?"


Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

Monday, December 15, 2008

Are Miracles Possible?

Dr. Phil Fernandes, in a chapter from his doctoral dissertation entitled Miracles, defends the idea that miracles are indeed possible.

Drawing from his work on the Cosmological Argument for God's existence, Dr. Fernandes continues by giving reason to believe that the origin of the universe itself is best explained by the miraculous!

I encourage you to check out both of these articles by Dr. Fernandes and hope you are challenged by them.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

Friday, December 12, 2008

Dan Wallace DVD's on the Reliability of the New Testament Manuscripts

New Testament Scholar Dan Wallace has announced the availability of two of his lectures on the reliablity of the New Testament documents.

Wallace writes:

"Several have asked about getting a hold of my plenary lecture at the Evangelical Theological Society’s annual meeting; others have wanted to get my lecture given at apologetics conferences and in churches on whether our Bibles today essentially reflect the wording of the original text."

The lectures are on:
  • “Is What We Have Now What They Wrote Then?”
  • “Challenges in New Testament Textual Criticism for the 21st Century”

For more information and how to order the DVDs, see here.

Just in time for Christmas!

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

"The Date of Christmas: In the Summer?"

New Testament Scholar Darrell Bock's latest blog entry discusses what, if anything, the gospel accounts of Jesus' birth tell us about the day He was born.

Bock writes:

"I did an interview for ABC's Good Morning America a few nights ago on the date of Christmas. It was triggered by an astronomer's claim to have nailed down the date to a day in June. The origins of this date are worth discussing, since the gospels do not give us a specific day or even the season Jesus was born. The most we can get for the biblical data is a range of years. Here is the gist of what I told ABC in an email before the interview..."

Check it out here.

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Norman Geisler on the Virgin Birth

As the Christmas season is upon us, many discussions will center around Jesus Christ and the "reason for the season."

Theologian and philosopher Norman Geisler, in his article The Virgin Birth, explains why the Christian has good reasons to believe that God truly did become a man on that first Christmas night.

Check it out here!

Courage and Godspeed,
Chad A. Gross

Saturday, December 06, 2008

The Virgin Birth of Jesus Christ

Many scoff at the idea of Jesus Christ being born of a virgin. However, we must ask, "Are there any good reasons to believe that God became a man on that first Christmas?"

Last year, around this time, I took an honest look at the above question and found that there are very good reasons to read the gospel accounts of Jesus' Birth as historical.

Check it out the article here. Also, be sure to view the For Further Reading section at the end of the article.

Merry Christ-mas,

Chad A. Gross