Reconnect Episode 8: Three Things Christians Say to Hurt Their Credibility

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George and Andy, discuss a series of articles from Credo House entitled: 21 Things Christians Say to Hurt Their Credibility.  In this episode they have time to discuss three of these statements:

1. “You can’t use the Bible to prove the Bible.”

2.  “Good question.  I’ll find the answer and get back to you.”

3.  “One white lie will send you to hell for all eternity.”

We want to be credible witnesses of Christ.
We want to be credible witnesses of Christ.

Andy and George agree that some of these statements really do hurt the credibility of our Christian witness and should be avoided, but they come to disagree with at least one of these articles, because they think the statement is in fact Scriptural, thus should be spoken, but maybe there is a better way of presenting the truth to a nonbeliever.

Other questions and topics emerge as they discuss these articles, such as: how do we know the Bible is the Word of God, how should we respond to questions we don’t know the answers, is it possible for Christians to have all the answers to life’s questions, what exactly is revealed to us in Scripture and why, how should we approach preparing answers to difficult questions raised against or about the Christian faith, why should churches teach apologetics, and the very controversial topic of varying degrees of punishment in hell!

If you want to chime in on any of these topics or give a short review of any episode of Reconnect, record a short 30 second to one minute long audio clip, stating your name and the episode number you are addressing, and send it to Andy at as an mp3 file.  If you have any questions you want addressed on the show, send them there via email as well.  Thanks.  Reconnect us, Oh Lord. 

Why are Some Books in the Bible and Others are Not #2

The Word Grows!

Dr. Franzmann in his book The Word of the Lord Grows explains that the Bible did not spontaneously appear, but that it grew over time through a gradual process.  He explains this by saying, “The canon is not being made; it is growing and being recognized.  This remains the case in the fourth century also, when the canon assumed the form it was destined to retain ever after in the Western church.”

This process of growth is easily seen when looking at the Old Testament.  As prophets wrote and the words of the prophets were confirmed by the work God did in their lives and through the fulfillment of their prophesies, their writings were seen to be God’s word.  Brad Alles notes in Life’s Big Questions, God’s Big Answers that Daniel 9:2 gives an example of the Bible’s growth.  This verse shows that Daniel was reading the Word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet and that he was counting the number of years prophesied for the Babylonian captivity.  God spoke to Jeremiah, Jeremiah wrote it down, it was collected, copied, and preserved, and later used by Daniel, who saw the fulfillment of that Word!

By the life of the apostles, the Old Testament canon had been set.  The books had been recognized by God’s people.  Jesus confirmed these scriptures, studied them, and taught from them.  Because of the evidence of Christ’s resurrection, we can trust that Christ is who he said he was – the Son of God, the Savior of the World.  This means that we can trust that God approves the Old Testament scriptures.  Jesus also put his stamp of approval on the apostle’s teachings when he told them in John 14:26, “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”


Why Are Some Books In The Bible And Others Are Not? #1

Stigmata Movie Poster
Stigmata was one such movie that envisioned books purposefully withheld from the Bible by the Church.

When Hollywood movies and popular fictional books revolve around the Bible, there’s a recurring theme that there are certain books which are not in the Bible that should be.  Usually the Vatican is hiding them all way in the Pope’s underground lairs!

Or in more legitimate cases, there are other Gospels, such as the Gospel of Thomas or the Gospel of Judas.  Should they be held up as the Word of God?  Did the church keep these books out of the Bible?  If the church kept these picks out, then doesn’t that mean the Bible is just a book put together and edited by men?
What’s the Standard for a Book to be in the Bible?
The word “canon” is often used when speaking of the books that are in the Bible.  “Canon” means “a standard or rule.”  For a book to be canonical it must have been written by an apostle or prophet, have been recognized by the early church, and has been in continuous use within the church for study and worship.  Certain lists for a book to be canonical vary, but they are all very similar.  Some of these variances are that the book must have been written in Greek or Hebrew (again this is connected to the book having been written by an apostle), the content of the book, and that the book had divine authority (again this is connected to the book having been written by an apostle or prophet), and that the texts were in use by the apostolic church (the church at the time the apostles were alive on earth).
It’s important to note that these standards were not imposed standards.  The church did not decide upon these criteria.  Instead the church merely recognized that these standards applied to the writings which authenticated themselves amongst the church.  In other words, the Scriptures were written and composed and gathered and accepted within the church as they were written, and later the church recognized the accepted books.