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October 10, 2020 1:30 am
If someone asked you to define evil, what would you say? Where do you go to find an answer for a question like this? Join RZIM's Founder, the late Ravi Zacharias, this week on Let My People Think, as he looks at the answers skeptics provide to deny the existence of God.
I the assumptions that are made by this world can only remain in the arm so that to be found are found in the gospel of Jesus Christ as those assumptions really cannot even be sustained skepticism in its own worldview cannot sustain those questions very meaningful to talk to an atheist, he or she will tell you the rough THAT they need to cross number one gap.
How did consciousness come from non-consciousness. Number two.
How did intelligent life come from non-intelligent life.
Number three. How did sexuality come from an asexual and nonsexual beginning in number four. How did moral reasoning can come from a non-moral framework take flight to control the debate over the God by making a little assumptions but quite honestly didn't add up under scrutiny. One of these assumptions deals with evil. Hell, I am welcome to let my people think skeptics have an ounce of everything. But that doesn't mean every onset is correct even logical. You could say that they have a heist of questionable onset. In fact that's what we title this week's theory. In part one of this message are the iambs found that late. Ravi Zacharias will take the lead in a handful of ounces offered by skeptics to deny the existence of God as he begins the series but the question evil questions we all have our own I've ever heard me tell the story of me being in Newark, New Jersey on the way from Bangkok to Atlanta and I landed in your by that point, you resemble your passport picture and I was heading to the gate to look for my plane and there was a different sign on the marquee to Atlanta so I leaned over and said to the lady of the corner. Choose. Is this going to Atlanta or is this going where the market says it is.
She said no is going to Atlanta so good going to get myself a cup of coffee and I heard the patter of feet behind me on a tap on my shoulder.
She said excuse me, you, Ravi Zacharias. I said, I'm afraid so. She said that is amazing. Absolutely amazing.
I said why she said I didn't know you had questions as well. This really happened. It was too early in the morning to clear the cloud away, but I so believe me I have a lot of questions, especially when I'm traveling. There's one thing about questions that we often forget we must be clear in what the questions assume every question comes with an assumption and that's why CS Lewis said nothing is so self-defeating as a question that is not been fully understood. Even after it has been fully posed questions, bring a bag of assumptions. Jesus was brilliant at revealing this Mark 1017 the scholar comes in and says, good master, what should I do to attain eternal life, giving us out of you and me where to set have you got five minutes, please set out about exactly the answer for you. What must you do to attain eternal life. What did Jesus say what you call me good is not good but God and I probably went Tillman's standard.
I asked her point blank question what you do to attain eternal life and he's asking me what you call me good YC muddying the waters know it's like the lion going to the jungle asking one animal after another goes to the giraffe and says who is the king of the jungle and the drive-bys, nonanswers, or line, you are a ghost of the monkey and says was the king of the jungle of my guesses will line you are and he goes to the elephant and says who is the king of the jungle elephant, just as idem wraps its trunk around this choral zoom around slams him onto the ground line says look I just had a simple question why you getting so upset about it. Questions may not be as simple as they are, they assume things today. I'm going to raise for you the tensions that are there in the world of skepticism. The inability for them to sustain their assumptions within their questions so that when they give their answers.
They either try to some of those assumptions are comfortable with incoherent answers to what has been assumed that questioning. I'll try to make that clear this morning. What I mean. Let's move to the questions that are there and skepticism.
Let me repeat for you. What I'm trying to demonstrate for you this morning as I move towards the Scriptures at the end of it. It is this the assumptions we make in our questions can only be retained if the onset is that we give to the society are in the gospel of Jesus Christ. The assumptions that are made by the skeptical world can only remain intact in the answers that are to be found are found in the gospel of Jesus Christ as those assumptions really cannot even be sustained skepticism in its own worldview cannot sustain those questions there very meaningful to talk to an atheist, he or she will tell you the rough THAT they need to cross number one gap. How did consciousness come from non-consciousness.
How did intelligent life come from nonintelligent life. Number three.
How did sexuality come from an asexual and nonsexual beginning in number four.
How did moral reasoning come from a nonmoral framework consciousness from non-consciousness intelligent life from nonintelligent life moral reasoning from nonmoral reasoning and so go the gaps a talk about the full gaps that there are. I want to show you for more gaps please borrow from one of them and show you how these tensions really lie. The first one is this on the reality and the mystery of evil.
How do we define evil. Where do we go to find an answer to this, you know, it is fascinating that the first time the word evil actually comes is right within the first three chapters of the book of Genesis when God says you shall not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
That word emerges very quickly in the revelation of holy Scripture. And if you see going to the New Testament, by the way, Jesus remarks to us that our heart is desperately evil and wicked above all things and then you go back to the time of the cane why he is warned that if he did that which was right, he would be accepted. But if he did not do that which was right. Sin was crouching at the door and was waiting to have him to devour him to dominate him. So these terms of wickedness, evil, sin. All of these are found in synonymous terms within the pages of holy writ. Here is what the tragedy really is in secularism number one, they do not know where to turn to find the definition of evil. And secondly, most precariously, even if they come about with large definitions of it. They are not able to shrink it down to personal responsibility and what the notion of sin actually means in the 1980s when President Reagan shot the world by referring to the former Soviet Union as an evil empire. The news lines were buzzing all over the world. How dare anybody call anyone else evil. What he have in mind and all that was going on because the wall symbolized something and not far from the wall heinous things had taken place in the concentration cramps on the brutality that humanity inflicted upon humanity was fun, thinkable. I was recently reading sections of an autobiography of Rudolph Hess who was the Commandant at Auschwitz and I read for you just do it three paragraphs from his own journals when he was referring to the gassing of the Jews that was up-and-coming by the tens of thousands. Indeed, the millions I was not properly conscious of the first gassing of human beings. Perhaps the procedure as a whole made too much of an impression on me. I remember much better the gassing of 900 Russians soon afterwards. In the old crematorium since using block 11 would have cost too much trouble while they were still being unloaded. Several holes was simply being knocked through the earth and the cement ceiling of the more the Russians had to undress in the outer room and they all went in calmly into the morgue. Since they had been told they were going to be only deal oust there. The whole transport walked right into the more the door was locked and the gas poured into the openings, how long the killing took. I do not actually know the home could still be heard for quite a while. However, when the gas was thrown and some people screamed yes and a great roaring began and the rush to both of the locked doors. They withstood the pressure. However, after several hours the room was opened in and out and I saw the guest corpses en masse for the first time, but I must be frank this gassing had a calming effect on me since the mass extermination of the Jews was due to begin soon, and neither Eichmann nor myself knew exactly what method of killing me might use on the expected masses. Now we had discovered the gas in the procedure went well.
If you been there. You know exactly what I mean and how it Auschwitz alone there were able to eliminate them at 12,000 every day. I want to do. Look at two very important links you please follow my reasoning and that is this my colleague was Guinness, in his book unspeakable talking about the whole mystery and enormity of evil, tells a story of how during the Rwanda massacre the Canadian general who was overseeing NATO forces was welcoming.
One of the world leaders to please come and take a look. He said enough is enough.
Do you know the tens of thousands that are being slaughtered here with one of you and political leadership. Please come and see what we are witnessing. So one of the world leaders. I will not name who it was. I don't want to make this political fee arrived and according to this Canadian general Romeo Dallaire said he just waited for about two hours. The engines running and then went back to his plane in Florida and said I really was not aware that all this was happening and had nothing more to say about it is what the general says you didn't know, I spent my life in NATO. I know NATO planes were overhead, and new I'm haunted now by dreams of the eyes of thousands and thousands of Africans, disembodied staring out of the African darkness. You just can't walk away from something like that saying you did what you could. You can't just listen to this line. You cannot just bump test pilot 800,000 people. It cannot test pilot 800,000 people what he mean by that. Wash your hands of it and say I am innocent of this man's blood see the trail that it follows. Now comes the real painful indictment New York Times ran an article for the worst of us. The diagnoses may be evil, and here's what it says predatory killers often do far more than commit murder. Some have lured the victims into homemade chambers for prolonged torture others have exotic tastes for vivisection, sexual humiliation, burning many perform their grisly rituals as much for pleasure as much for any reason among themselves. A few forensic scientists have taken to thinking of these people is not mentally disturbed actually evil. Evil in that the deliberate habitual savagery defies any psychological explanation, or attempt many psychiatrists assiduously avoid this word evil, contending that its use would precipitate a dangerous slide from clinical to moral judgment, and that would put people on death row unnecessarily and obscure the understanding of true violent criminals.
Still, many career.
Forensic examiners say their work forces them to reflect on the concept of evil, and he goes on and on and then the debate begins.
And many of them say we think it's dangerous to actually call this evil but numerous psychiatrists are saying for what we see actually happening.
Some of the description that fits is only the word evil and so I raise this question for you. How do we deal with this a fascinating thing to me as I made a note of some of the secular philosophers who dealt with this and here's what some of them actually say Virgil and is in the end says this what region of the earth is not full of calamities Thomas Hobbes and a harmony man is the most gunning the strongest on the most dangerous animal Voltaire after the Lisbon earthquake. I pity the Portuguese. Like you, but men still do more harm to each other on their little molehill.
The nature does to them. Our wars are massacre as more men then are swallowed up by earthquakes David Hume in dialogues concerning natural religion.
Man is the greatest enemy of man Jean-Jacques Rousseau in a meal. Seek the altar of evil no longer, it is yourself. These are the humanists who are saying it is deep within our heart, here's my question for the skeptic, can you talk of evil without assuming a moral framework or can you talk of education without first looking inside the human heart. Can you talk of evil without assuming a moral framework. Can you really talk of education without first looking into the human heart when the heart is desperately wicked and above all things. The Bible is very clear that there's a wickedness and an evil bent in your heart and mind. Here's what the Bible says about it. If you go to the Old Testament the word is a rock if you go into the New Testament in Greek. It is later.
These two words have different nuances of meaning both bring in suffering, but in the New Testament, the idea of impoverishment is there in the Old Testament. It is predatory it is something that consumes you impoverishment you are overwhelmed and when you get to the word called sin. In the Greek hamartia. It brings both of these together we fall short of the glory of God. But we also transgress the law of God, that's exactly what the Bible means by evil even in your purity you cannot attain to the righteousness that is God's but it is more than that you and I will fully deliberately violate the law of God.
These two concepts. They end up consuming us. They end up impoverishing us and we become a people lost in search of a light in search of direction.
Can you talk about evil without raising the question of the moral law, or can you talk of education without first looking into the human heart. This is very important in our time in North American history with so much of education is being controlled by worldviews and we have no understanding of what it really means to be human evil. Second is the quest for justice how we long for justice today flying to Oxford last week. I just finished the meetings in Dallas and I was really quite tired and my colleagues were here with me and they were sitting elsewhere and I know one of them looked across the aisle in my direction.
Pitifully wondering karate is not going to get a break started at 630 that morning flew into Dallas met with about 25 pastors and spoke to them on some common issues. Tape three programs are James Robison went straight to the airport in Dallas for about a 10:30 PM flight to have that aided their half our fights was exhausted and a European woman sat next to me and I don't know what it will brought on the conversation, but she started talking about America's sense of something superior. I would rather and I finally said to what you say that she said you know when to talk about the Constitution and all this stuff why do they think they were the first ones to frame all of this I said are you aware of the difference between the Enlightenment in Europe and the Enlightenment in America.
Are you aware of the difference the Enlightenment in Europe. Reason was supreme Enlightenment in America and the United Kingdom.
Moral reasoning was supreme reason itself came second in structure, moral reasoning was supreme. That's why even Alexis de Tocqueville, the French philosopher comes to America and leaves here and says what makes this nation unique is its faith in God.
I said that is different.
She backed off. I said what drives you if you don't believe in moral reasoning. She said justice.
Imagine justice as if it is distinct moral reasoning. Justice is based on law laws. The road justice may be part of the political process in the trunk, but the roots have to be held together by moral soil and so before I get too far afield on this. The fact of the matter is, even for the Greeks justice was of virtue and justice is an indispensable element in our foundation. Socrates said justice is the firmest pillar of good government dime is racing on and so I just want to ask you this simple question as I raise it and that is this, can you cry for justice unless you know the justifiable source for all interesting evening to deny God's existence still want the benefit is little insured for 18 to hear more from Ravi from Ganz Pres. Michael Ramsden as he talks about the importance of reaching younger generation even think and found that in late Ravi Zacharias in part one of his message questionable on faith Gina next meet to hear Ravi if he continued to slip Jeff's death along with the other concept. Skeptic struggle with Ike evil led and forgiveness.
Very often in the church. It feels like we make a speciality of fighting lost his battles rather than this. He is an apologetics needs. Therefore, to be listening to the younger generation that questions what are their issues. What are their struggles, and those the ones that normally make us feel the most uncomfortable and those questions shift from generation to generation and therefore if we don't address ourselves to the gospel with each successive generation. Eventually we lose the gospel in the process and sadly there are some parts of the will that is happened you don't make a generational leap in the church begins to go into decay in the society around the case result as well. But listening therefore to the heart of dumb questions and engaging with young people. All the different initiatives we haven't currently going on, whether it's with young students. High schoolers people at University young adults we need to listen to the questions that they have and then apply ourselves to think about what we have to say to them, you're asking questions about artificial intelligence and what does it mean to be human.
But how do we answer that question you're asking questions about gender fluidity. What is the gospel have to say about that. Some of these questions. Of course with dealing with things we haven't dealt with before retrying them to draw on the wisdom of the insight of the ancients and all those who went before us to make sure that we don't lose the gospel in the process while at the same time, do some very hard work both with language in terms of translation and concept in terms of thought to say that we want to communicate this ancient message to you with a fresh impetus of fresh understanding.
We don't want to change it.
We don't alter it anyway but we need to help you see how it connects to your life where you are.
I think in that sense, no one is important for us to reach them in terms of future succession of the future life and leadership of the church, but also important for us to keep us fresh and makes us come back to the Scripture again apply ourselves on these again for the Lord and signaled what would you have a say what would you have us do. How do we respond faithfully to this in a way, the first and foremost pleases you, and ultimately, hopefully, also reaches the heart of the person asking the question to you can order today's method in its entirety by calling one 800-4486 76.
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Check out the numerous resources to 18 in your stats for tree including past Broca's articles in a wide selection effects from the ancien team is another great way to keep up-to-date on upcoming live streams and see the latest ministry initiative, father-in-law, and I often speak blissfully about fine used bookstores that we have visited.
He tells one story, however, that has all the others soundly beaten. He was in a sophisticated bookstore in Toronto which caters to the academic community rich in classical tradition. Suddenly in came a rough short man and greasy overalls who bellowed to the owner how much does it cost to buy 128 feet of books obviously bewildered by this request will never before had he sold scholarly works by the foot. The owner applied what exactly did you have in mind.
It turns out that the buyer had been sent by a group of trade union leaders who are hosting their educated counterparts and management in an effort to break the deadlock in some highly volatile negotiations so the union leaders decided to decorate their offices with the length of books, why to convey the intimidating air of being ideological heavyweights and to terrify the opposition funnier than none to Solomon reminds us that there is nothing new under the sun, and so I suspect that this was not the first such scenario in history. After all jockeying for literary superiority is as old as the printed page. No doubt many of us has had occasion to purchase this Classics books that have served arterial purposes, giving the appearance that we are wise. Groucho Marx once responded to another, from the moment topic to book up till I laid it down. I was convulsed with laughter. Someday I intended to read it. I suspect there are books like that in your own experience, which, while not provoking laughter have never entered the mind. One critic set of Stephen Hawking's famed book, a brief history of time which shattered all records on the bestseller list in the United Kingdom that it would be the most bought and least Redbook in recent memory. And yet who of you has not entered another world again.
The life-changing insight just from reading a book. Friends don't take the power of reading for granted. I am absolutely convinced of the books you and I read possibly help mold our lives more purposefully and eternally. I might add, than we ever realize asking Solomon one set of making many books there is no end, but finding of wisdom preserves the life of its possessor.
For that I would like to say only the book of all books. The Bible has let my people think that the listener supported radio ministry is managed by Marianne Atlanta