[asa] Ravi Z. delivers

From: Merv Bitikofer <mrb22667@kansas.net>
Date: Wed Mar 04 2009 - 00:10:33 EST

Ravi Zacharias did not disappoint his audience in Manhattan, KS, tonight
in a K-State ballroom (& with overflow areas also full watching it on
screen). He was entertaining ---nay, captivating. But more
importantly I think he connected with this university audience with what
I would call a robust unapologetically Christian world view. He made it
clear that he wasn't there to fight, and he didn't belabor any attempted
"proof of God" apologetics. His message heavily majored on the moral
argument quoting heavily from Nietzsche and other more contemporary
atheists who Zacharias used to press home the point that you cannot get
meaningful moral basis from reason alone. And Ravi seemingly admired
Nietzsche for facing this fact head-on, noting & quoting how Nietzsche
seemed to bemoan rather than celebrate the "death of God". Zacharias
didn't, however, pretend that we will be backing anyone into a corner
with a knock-down proof. He instead gave powerful personal testimony
for how Christ had transformed his own life. He gave a defense of
Pascal's wager (one of the minor things I would have had fun dickering
with him about, given the chance. --But such quibbles are easily
overlooked at the periphery of his central message.) The only mention
Darwin got was in being lumped together with Freud and Marx as a trio
representing ideas that people of modern times have sought out to
replace God. I stayed until the Q&A looked to be nearly over
afterwards, but since it was still going, I could have missed it if
Zacharias or his "co-answerer" were pressed in any areas of science.

One intriguing "aside" comment as near as I can remember it: "If Jesus
had been out to dupe his followers regarding the coming resurrection, he
could/would have told them he will be /spiritually /resurrected --which
would make it conveniently non-falsifiable for all ages. Instead we
get/got the bold claim of a bodily resurrection.

Most questioners were obviously Christian & affirming & one who seemed
to be in a "seeker" category was very courteous. I was impressed with
how they handled one question of how could a gracious, forgiving, and
loving God plan eternal punishment for most of humankind. Even though
they couldn't (& said they couldn't) give a complete or satisfactory
answer in the time at hand, they did do well with what they said, I thought.

I was impressed. R.Z. is obviously highly aware of what all the
high-profile new-atheists are saying these days, and he is engaging
those topics (although not so much in science --at least not this
evening.)

I should not have been surprised if some in attendance came or will come
to Christ as a result. & yet I also wonder what percentage of attenders
actually were atheists. Most that I glanced around at were probably
like me --there because we were curious. And in that environment of
applause and laughter in all the right places (which is so easily taken
as mockery to the lonely and silent dissenter in its midst), any
atheists present would certainly have felt their minority status
keenly. It would have taken a lot of chutzpah to show any belligerence
at the question microphones. Nevertheless, if non-believers did not
feel welcome, it was not because of Zacharias' talk which was gracious
and inviting. At least from one university podium this night, our faith
was well and articulately represented.

Thank you to those of you who urged me not to miss this.

--Merv

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Received on Wed Mar 4 00:05:37 2009

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