Dear Evangelical Christian Apologist: Do You Perceive the Presence of Jesus?

Just once I would like to see someone debating William Lane Craig or any other evangelical Christian apologist ask: “Mr. Craig, do you perceive the presence of Jesus?”

Any evangelical who is honest will have to answer: “Yes, of course I perceive the presence of Jesus.”

The next question should then be: “Mr. Craig, if you can perceive the presence of the resurrected Jesus, how could any historical evidence presented by skeptics ever convince you that Jesus is still dead?”

I have found most evangelical Christian apologists are very hesitant to answer this question. They know that to a non-Christian audience an honest answer to this question makes them look like a complete kook:

Seriously, you can perceive the presence of a guy who died 2,000 years ago? What are you smoking, dude??

Dear fellow skeptics: If you decide to debate evangelical Christian apologists, don’t waste your time discussing historical evidence. The belief/faith of evangelical Christians is not based on historical evidence, it is based on their perception of a ghost/spirit interacting with them on a daily basis.

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End of post.

12 thoughts on “Dear Evangelical Christian Apologist: Do You Perceive the Presence of Jesus?

  1. Hmm…I suppose this is why I was never an evangelical in my years identifying as a Christian, because I never perceived the presence of Jesus.
    I was a Christian, a Quaker, because I saw the historical figure of Jesus as a worthy ideal against all the immoral and unjust actions of humans in the 1960’s and the books of history that I read.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. IMO, you make a good point. If people would see Jesus as an example on how to live and treat others (instead of a “god”), there might not be so much crap going on in the religious world. Instead, what we have is a BIG MESS of creeds and beliefs and rules and denominations and … and …

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  2. Presence of Jesus and presence of the Holy Spirit are, or should be, indistinguishable. So Craig’s assertion of the “Internal witness of The Holy Spirit” is the same as the presence of Jesus.. Craig has even said no amount of external evidence can over ride that internal witness. A video camera inside the tomb would make no difference.
    I haven’t read any of his books, but I certainly heard him say that back when I used to listen to his podcast, around 2008 or so, and I’ve seen skeptic blogs discuss it with predictable and justified disdain. He’s basically saying a strong powerful feeling of assurance means you are right. Hello Mormonism and their burning in the Bosom!
    When I heard him say it, he made a point of saying that he doesn’t bring it up in debates, it’s only really meant for the ears of his fellow believers. “Knowing vs Showing” is the term he used. He knows it internally. Debates are for showing (Evidence and argument based)

    So how would he react if it were brought up in a debate? Has someone ever done that?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. In point of fact we can know that Jesus rose from the dead wholly apart from a consideration of the historical evidence. The simplest Christian, who has neither the opportunity nor wherewithal to conduct a historical investigation of Jesus’ resurrection, can know with assurance that Jesus is risen because God’s Spirit bears unmistakable witness to him that it is so. And any non-Christian who is truly seeking to know the truth about God and life can also be sure that Jesus is risen because God’s Spirit will lead him to a personal relationship with the risen Lord. Thus, there are really two avenues to a knowledge of the fact of the resurrection: the avenue of the Spirit and the avenue of historical inquiry.

      William Lane Craig, The Son Rises: The Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus (Chicago: Moody Press, 1981; reprint, Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2000), 7–8.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you. It’s good to have a written source to quote instead just saying I heard someone say something.

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  3. Further to my comment on Craig’s internal witness of the Holy Spirit, here is a variation on that regarding the truth of the Bible. Micheal Kruger, who I first discovered when searching for reviews of Ehrman’s “Jesus Interrupted,” follows the line that there is good evidence for biblical accuracy, but then also says a Christian can also know which books within are canonical – the church fathers choose the correct ones- because the authentic books are self authenticating. The believer hears God’s voice in them. Non believers cannot see this because they are blinded by the Noetic effects of sin. This is part of Reformed Epistemology, the same thinking put forward by Plantinga that holds to properly basic beliefs such as the obvious existence of God – a mind not corrupted by the fall can sense it.

    So just like Gary’s question in this post about the Resurrection, for some Christians even the canon of scripture is ultimately a faith based notion, regardless of quality of historical evidence. link below.

    https://www.michaeljkruger.com/is-the-concept-of-a-self-authenticating-bible-a-modern-invention/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. One of my follow up questions on this subject is: There are many children who believe that they have an invisible friend who performs supernatural acts and tricks for them. Most educated adults believe that these children are engaged in a delusion; a delusion which provides the children comfort and a sense of security. How would we go about distinguishing the reality of your invisible, supernatural friend, Jesus the resurrected Christ, from the invisible friend of these delusional children?

      The Christian apologist usually becomes very indignant at that point.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, they want to be able to gush over the sentiments of subjective child like faith, but still want to maintain the respectability of adult intelligence and maturity that doesn’t get fooled like a child would. Their indignance probably shows the cognitive dissonance they experience.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes, it is interesting what kind of answers you get to: Please provide objective evidence that you perceive the presence of a spirit. If you are unable to do so, why should we believe in the reality of your invisible friend any more than we believe in the invisible friends of children?

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I’ve seen them do the flip flop when asked this- accuse their interlocutor of positivist or enlightenment thinking that disregards things like intuition. Of course, they don’t hold this view when dealing with other religions, or their doctor!

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