You know, sometimes people say things that require a facepalm. This can be annoying when you’re debating someone and the other person does this, but few things are worse than when someone on your own side says something absurd.
Because of this, and for the sake of Christian credibility, I offer these 5 arguments that Christians should never use in debate, primarily with atheists.
- You can’t prove that God doesn’t exist.
The obvious answer to this is “So what?” You also can’t prove that invisible, intangible unicorns don’t exist. But you assume they don’t because you lack any reasons to believe that they do. Likewise, we should not expect atheists to believe until we give particular reasons.
- The Bible was proved when [insert uncanny and convenient science myth here].
Like others, we Christians sometimes buy into urban legends, and we are especially prone to believing and propagating ones which support Christianity. I’ve heard people say that astronomers found a discrepancy in astronomical data which matched perfectly with the time that the sun stopped for Joshua and went back for Hezekiah. This is false. Same goes for many similar stories. Don’t repeat these things without verifying that they are true.
- You ask me how I know He lives? He lives within my heart! (Or: My God’s not dead! He’s surely alive, and He’s living on the inside roaring like a lion!)
Nothing against these songs, but it’s a terrible argument. People of all religions feel stuff in their heart which convinces them of things. The fact is that purely subjective experience doesn’t prove anything. It is true as some Christians say that “they can’t deny your experience,” but they can certainly interpret it in a number of ways besides that you’ve experienced God.
- Evolution [insert anything here].
Never sidetrack a debate on Christianity with evolution. Disproving evolution would not prove Christianity, nor would proving evolution disprove Christianity, and all these debates do, unless you’re well-trained in biology, is give the other person a chance to derail you on something insignificant.
- You just don’t want to face up to the future of judgment for your sin.
Scripture calls those who deny God “fools” and says that they suppress the truth by unrighteousness. But sin is deceitful. It works behind the scenes most of the time. Someone’s conscious motivation for not accepting Christianity is rarely related to their sin, and usually is caused by sin throwing out other deceitful excuses to captivate them, which they consciously believe and consider the only reasons for their disbelief. Even when they are trying to avoid judgment, they rarely realize it. So this argument comes off as accusatory and puts them on the defensive unnecessarily.
So don’t use these arguments. Sound good? Awesome.