Class: Investigating and Defending the Gospels #9: When do we have enough evidence?


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Purpose: How to determine when there is enough evidence to make a conclusion 

Investigating and Defending the Gospels #9 

When do we have enough evidence?

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • December 2, In the year of our Lord, 2015

  1. What persuades you, may not persuade another person. 
    1. What led you to believe in God, the Gospel accounts, creation, et al.?
    2. The film, Patterns of Evidence, showed me that dating biblical events or biblical books is important, although I never used to think that way.
  2. Is there enough evidence to persuade someone that God exists, that Jesus is the Son of God, that the Bible came from God, et al.? 
    1. Do we need to know everything before we can come to a conclusion?
    2. What more could we possibly show someone that would persuade him?
    3. Will we always be able to answer every question?
    4. Matthew 27.42 shows the enemies of Jesus demanding yet another sign.
    5. Scripture provides enough information:
      1. Deu 29.29
      2. Luke 16.27–31
  3. People doubt for various reasons: 
    1. Rational – They have reasoned through the evidence, but do not see what we see, or they believe an alternative explanation exists.
    2. Emotional – They think badly of God, the Bible, the church, or something that has turned them off.
    3. Volitional – They have decided that they will not accept any evidence.
  4. Can you make a decision without all the facts? 
    1. We do it all the time.
    2. We get enough information that we can make a reasonable decision.
      1. Mr. J. Warner Wallace uses a puzzle to illustrate the point.
      2. Can you assemble enough pieces to know what the total picture is?
  5. How do you answer someone who says evil denies the existence of God? 
    1. They argue
      1. that if He is all-powerful, He would stop the evil;
      2. that if He is all-loving, He would stop the evil.
    2. Since evil exist, they conclude that either
      1. He is all-powerful but not all-loving, or
      2. all-loving but not all-powerful,
        1. in both cases denying that He is God, or
        2. simply that He does not exist.
    3. The response:
      1. How do we determine what is evil?
      2. Will the standard of right and wrong change with society?
      3. Evil exists because man chooses to do evil.
      4. Love necessitates that man have a choice, otherwise, his love is robotic.
      5. God will stop evil
        1. 2Pe 3.1–13
        2. Think of heaven and hell.
          1. Why do they exist?
          2. If God stopped evil now, He stops all things earthly.
      6. Do atheists want God to stop them when they do evil?
  6. We make decisions without knowing everything, because 
    1. we can gain enough evidence that it overwhelms us,
    2. showing the way to decide.
  7. Do not get discouraged.