I have posted a number of Fact Sheets in the last several months, and I will be posting more. In all probability, I have already posted articles that challenge the thinking of some, and it’s likely that some have disagreed with something that I’ve written.
People that know me know that I am a people person. I enjoy the company of friends and loved ones, and I enjoy meeting new people and making friends. So I don’t take delight in having a disagreement with someone. I do not thrive on conflict. Why, then, do I write about things that are potentially controversial?
I write what I write because I feel compelled to do so. I write from conviction. I tend to write in my Fact Sheet format because I believe I have factual and important information to share. I write about matters pertaining to my faith, and my faith is informed–no, scratch that, my faith is based–on what the Bible teaches.
And that’s where the potential for controversy comes into the picture. There are a lot of denominations of Christianity out there, and they don’t all say the same thing about the Bible’s doctrines. And there are various religions out there, professing at least some association with the name of Christ, but they teach different doctrines. Furthermore, we live in an age of relativism, in a culture that balks at the concept of absolute truth. So for any number of reasons, anything about the Bible is going to be perceived as controversial.
So if you should happen to disagree with something I’ve written, and you want to talk to me about it, I’m certainly open to a reasonable discussion of the facts concerning the issue in question. However, certain approaches to discussing our differences will be a waste of your time and mine, so let me clarify what a reasonable discussion is from my perspective.
If you’ve taken exception to something I’ve written, it will no doubt have to do with Biblical teaching. So if you seek to challenge my convictions, then you will address what I’ve written on the subject. This just makes sense and is common courtesy.
Of course, you didn’t have to read what I’ve written, and you don’t have to engage me about it. But if you choose to, then you must address yourself to what I’ve written. I’ve taken the time to study the issue, to research it thoroughly and express my convictions in writing. I’ve documented what I believe and why.
So if you wish to challenge my convictions with a view toward changing them, parroting some denominational/theological party line or some politically correct mantra won’t do it. I won’t even consider your referring me to someone else’s article, sermon or book on a given subject. Please do me the courtesy of responding to what I’ve written yourself, and respond in kind. Address the passages of Scripture I’ve addressed. If I have presented evidence from the original languages of Scripture, then to counter my views you must do the same. The same holds true for other scientific disciplines, whether historical, etymological, archaeological, etc.
If your challenge has to do with the veracity or trustworthiness of the Bible itself, that’s fair game as well. But again, politically correct propaganda carries no weight with me. To challenge my belief in the Scriptures, you will need to have read the whole Bible, more than one time through, and you will also have to address those Scriptures in their original languages.
I’ve read the Bible my whole life, in several languages. And for more than four decades, I have tried as best I could to study the Scriptures in their original languages (Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek). I do not claim to be a scholar in Biblical languages; I’m just a student. But that is the level at which I study. It’s not just a casual thing with me.
Of course, I could be wrong about a given point. I certainly have been before, and I’ve changed my views accordingly down through the years. And if someone’s challenge proves me wrong, I will ultimately be happy about it, because I’m after truth.