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Disarming Skeptics

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“Homophobic.” “Misogynist.” How do Christians address the criticism that they’re hate-filled bigots?

Ken Ham

Illustration by Viktor Miller-Gausa

Ken Ham
Answers in Genesis

In the era we live in, we often hear accusations that Christians are misogynists, homophobic, and hate-filled people. I believe there are at least four reasons this is the case.

  1. Many Christians have answered questions about such matters as gender, gay marriage, and abortion in the wrong way, sometimes coming across as intolerant of people who hold different views.
  2. Most Christians don’t truly understand that to be Christian means to have a Christian worldview that is built upon the Bible as the foundation for that worldview. Yes, they may use the Bible and quote passages, but that doesn’t mean they understand how to explain their worldview foundationally.
  3. Most secularists (wrongly) don’t think they have a worldview, and they think what they believe comes from just looking at evidence.
  4. Many secularists misinterpret a Christian’s disagreement with their worldview as being intolerant of them personally, instead of understanding there’s a clash of worldviews because of the difference foundationally and where those worldviews come from.

For a Christian, the Bible makes it clear that one is either for or against Christ (Matthew 12:30) and that one walks either in light or in darkness (Matthew 6:22–23). As we read in Matthew 7:24–27, one builds a house either on the rock or on sand.

I’ve found that the best way to explain all this is to use the analogy of building a house. A carpenter doesn’t start with the roof, then the walls, and then the foundation. No, he builds the foundation first, then the walls and roof.

A worldview is like the walls and the roof of a house, but every worldview has a foundation. And ultimately, there are only two foundations. One starts with the Word of One who knows everything and who has revealed to us all we need to know to build the correct worldview. The other one starts with the foundation that fallible man determines truth.

The Bible claims to be (and I know it to be) the revealed Word of God who knows everything. For Christians, this is the only foundation upon which they can build a truly Christian worldview. Thus, founded in God’s Word beginning in Genesis, marriage is one man and one woman (Genesis 2:24); there are two genders, male and female (Genesis 1:27); and abortion is murder because man is made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27) and murder is wrong (Genesis 9:6).

It’s important to explain to a secularist why we as Christians believe the way we do about these issues. We need to explain that our thinking comes from the Bible.

It’s important to explain to a secularist why we as Christians believe the way we do about these issues. We need to explain that our thinking comes from the Bible.

Now they will often object and say the Bible is not true. When they do this, we need to pause to ask them why they believe this and what arguments they have against the Bible.

Then we do our best to answer their claims (using apologetics) to show we can defend the claim that the Bible is true—it is God’s Word. Then we can get back to explaining that our worldview comes from the Bible.

Also, it’s vital we show them that they have a starting point, too, a foundation for their worldview. Often secularists claim they start with evidence, but the Bible is evidence and they reject that (Romans 1:21–22)! Explain to them that if they reject the Bible and believe all life arose by natural processes, then that foundation totally determines what worldview they have built upon it, and how they look at evidence.

Once we’ve explained all this, we can point out that the reason there is a clash of worldviews is because we have two different starting points. Until we both have the same starting point, we won’t have the same worldview.

This will also help them understand that when a Christian disagrees with them on gay marriage, abortion, or multiple genders (other than male or female), they are not being hateful; they have a different worldview and that’s where the clash is occurring.

Now there will be those who say they are Christians and they agree with gay marriage and/or abortion. If they claim they are Christians, then we need to make sure they understand their worldview has a starting point—and it has to be the Bible. If they agree to that, then we have to talk about why they interpret the Bible differently than other Christians do. And until we can solve that issue, the worldview clash will not be alleviated. But explaining this all foundationally does help disarm the skeptics of all types and enable many to understand the disagreement is not personal, and therefore not hateful.

Ultimately, it’s all about foundations—God’s Word or man’s fallible, finite word. The battle started in Genesis 3:1, when the devil tempted Adam and Eve to doubt God’s Word and decide truth for themselves and thus be their own gods. This battle has raged for 6,000 years and continues to rage.

This is the battle that begins in Genesis and runs through the entire Scripture to Revelation. It’s described as a battle between

  • Good and evil,
  • Light and darkness,
  • A house built on the rock and one built on sand,
  • For Christ and against,
  • Gather and scatter,
  • Life and death.

Choose you this day whom you will serve, whether . . . the gods . . . in whose land you dwell [or] . . . the Lord” (Joshua 24:15). Make sure you know how to contend foundationally!

Ken Ham is the founder and president of Answers in Genesis–US. He has edited and authored many books about the authority of God’s Word and the impact of evolutionary thinking on our culture, including Already Compromised and The Lie.

Answers Magazine

July–August 2018

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