Sir, I would like to thank you for the website. While many sites are cumbersome or loaded with irrelevant material, I have found yours to be a fascinating read; provocative toward the depths of the text of scripture. Since I was introduced to your articles in "midstream" with The Satanic Rebellion I wasn't certain of your position regarding the Christian faith because so many fallacies concerning Satan and End-Times abound today. Reviewing the contents from the beginning, then, was quite helpful in determining the intent. May I ask your assessment and opinion of the Reformation and Puritan writings? I find them, as I have found yours, to be extremely useful in guiding me aright in presenting myself before a Holy God. Again, thank you. I have been in correspondence with an aggressively antagonistic atheist recently who claims that the Christian faith is unreasonable, illogical and dishonest. He claims "biblegod" to be the worst of all tyrants; schizophrenic and cruel. I am so encouraged after reading your expositions yet, if I may ask one more thing, what advise could you give for this type discussion?
Thanks for your kind comments and support. I am particularly gratified by your statement about the way the site is constructed. It is not "glitzy" but my hope is that it is easy to navigate and load, focusing on content rather than "bells and whistles".
As to the Puritans and reformers, I am not too well read on the Puritans, but I do have a number of acquaintances who have derived much encouragement from their writings.
As to the Reformers, there is no question that these were men of deep conviction and faith – they too can be a source of great encouragement (I find Calvin solid in particular). I believe it says much about the current state of affairs in the Church that, like many others, you feel the need to go rather far a field for such encouragement and direction.
As to your question regarding your correspondent, I think it is perfectly true that the Christian faith is not subject to the world's reason and logic. God has so constructed the world as to make the choice for Him and His Son primarily one of faith. Not that Christianity is "illogical" – that is wrong and unfair. It is simply that God has not made the logic of it so undeniable to worldly eyes as to prevent those who have no interest in Him from hardening their hearts against Him (as it seems your correspondent has done). To call the Christian faith "dishonest", however, is to misunderstand it entirely. How can the free offer of eternal life be "dishonest". I would assume that in your friend's logic (or, really, "rhetoric"), it is dishonest because, in his view, there is no God and no eternal life. This is a pretty fundamental disagreement, and in my experience it is almost impossible to have much effect on hardened hearts like these. That is because, in my view of scripture, everyone has at some time or another come to the realization of the fact of God's existence – that is why the universe, why the world, why we are constructed as we are. Nature and our very nature scream that there is a God, and everyone has seen this at some point (Ps.19:1-6; Eccl.3:11; Acts 17:27; Rom.1:18-23). The fact that some later deny this is merely an indication of the path they have chosen. The fact that they may deny this vehemently is merely an indication that they have hardened themselves in their false beliefs. And when things come to such a pass, it is virtually impossible for us to have much of an impact. Like Pharaoh who had experienced the power of God first hand and yet still refused to relent even though any human logic would understand the futility of staying the course, such individuals have locked down attitudes in their hearts which can only be changed by God through the most intense of experiences – if then. That is why we are told by our Lord to beware of casting pearls before swine – not that God does not want all to be saved (He clearly does: cf. Ezek.18:23; Matt.18:14; Jn.12:47; 1Tim.2:4; 2Tim.2:24-26; 2Pet.3:9), but because there does come a point when a person has made very clear the choice that he/she has determined upon (cf. 1Jn.5:16). And, after all, it is for this reason that we have been put in this world, namely, to choose for or against God and to demonstrate the level of commitment we have to that choice over time through continued faith and faithfulness to Jesus (cf. Ex.9:15).
As to his comment about "biblegod", it is ever the case for any and all who wish to attack the truth of God that they inevitably attack the scriptures, because it is through the Bible that we know Him and know about Him. The Bible breathes forth the Person and the personality of God, and all who truly seek Him in truth through its pages are always richly rewarded. Things that seem contradictory to those who reject Him and the truth of His words become ever more clear to those who diligently seek Him until, with time and study and application and proper instruction, everything in scripture melds together into one indivisible and marvelous whole, wonderful beyond human description because it is the very Word of God. These final comments from your correspondent are the most vitriolic precisely because the truth of scripture is what the devil and those who have cast their lot with him fear the most. Anyone and everyone who truly turns to seek God through the Bible is lead to the truth, ever deeper and more detailed until everything melts into Jesus Christ and the loving Father who gave Him. This is the power that destroys and will destroy all lies, the power of truth.
For more on the subject of God's revealing of Himself through His creation, see Peter's Epistles: Lesson # 11: Natural & Special Revelation. And please see also the following links:
How do you prove the existence of God?
Unbelief and its Consequences.
In Him who is the only way, the only life, and the only truth, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.