8 Quotes From “More Than A Carpenter”

more-than-a-carpenterMore Than A Carpenter by Josh & Sean McDowell is a wonderful resource to prepare you to share the uniqueness of Jesus Christ. Check out my book review by clicking here, and then enjoy these quotes that I especially found interesting.

“Why don’t the names of Buddha, Mohammed, or Confucius offend people the way the name of Jesus does? I think the reason is that these other religious leaders didn’t claim to be God.” —Josh McDowell

“It was reserved for Christianity to present to the world an ideal which through all the changes of eighteen centuries has inspired the hearts of men with an impassioned love; has shown itself capable of acting on an all ages, nations, temperaments, and conditions; has been not only the highest pattern of virtue, but the strongest incentive to its practice. … The simple record of these three short years of active fife has done more to regenerate and soften mankind than all the disquisitions of philosophers and all the expectations of moralists.” —William Lecky, one of Great Britain’s most noted historians and a fierce opponent of organized Christianity

“This testimony [that Jesus was God], if not true, must be downright blasphemy or madness. … Self-deception in a matter so momentous, and with an intellect in all respects so clear and so sound, is equally out of the question. How could He be an enthusiast or a mad man who never lost the even balance of His mind, who sailed serenely over all the troubles and persecutions, as the sun above the clouds, who always returned the wisest answer to tempting questions, who calmly and deliberately predicted His death on the Cross, His resurrection on the third day, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the founding of His church, the distraction of Jerusalem—predictions which have been literally fulfilled? A character so original, so complete, so uniformly consistent, so perfect, so human and set so high above all human greatness, can be neither a fraud nor a fiction. The poet, as has been well said, would in this case be greater than the hero. It would take more than a Jesus to invent a Jesus.” —Philip Schaff

“There exists no document from the ancient world witnessed by so excellent a set of textual and historical testimonies, and offering so superb an array of historical data on which an intelligent decision may be made. An honest [person] cannot dismiss a source of this kind. Skepticism regarding the historical credentials of Christianity is based on an irrational bias.” —Clark H. Pinnock

“The Gospels tell us Jesus’ family, including James, were embarrassed by what He was claiming to be. They didn’t believe in Him; they confronted Him. In ancient Judaism it was highly embarrassing for a rabbi’s family not to accept him. Therefore, the Gospel writers would have no motive for fabricating this skepticism if it weren’t true. Later the historian Josephus tells us that James, the brother of Jesus, who was the leader of the Jerusalem church, was stoned to death because of his belief in his brother. Why did James’ life change? Paul tells us: the resurrected Jesus appeared to him. There’s no other explanation.” —J. P. Moreland

“The resurrection takes the question ‘Is Christianity valid?’ out of the realm of philosophy and makes it a question of history.”

“I believe in the resurrection, partly because a series of facts are unaccountable without it.” —Michael Ramsey, former Archbishop of Canterbury

“The Old Testament contains sixty major messianic prophecies and approximately 270 ramifications that were fulfilled in one Person, Jesus Christ. … We find the chances of just forty-eight of these prophecies being fulfilled in one person to be only 1 in 10157. … All of the prophecies about the Messiah were made at least four hundred years before He was to appear. … This description of the manner of [Christ’s] death was written eight hundred years before the Romans used crucifixion as a method of execution.” —Josh McDowell

I am always sharing quotes from More Than A Carpenter and other interesting authors regularly on both Twitter and Tumblr. Please make sure you are following me there as well to see these quotes as soon as they are posted.

8 Quotes From “The Facts On World Religions”

The Fact On World ReligionsThe Facts On World Religions is a broad overview of the four major religions of the world—Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism. You can read my full book review by clicking here. These are some of the passages I found noteworthy….

“Positive criticism: Being critical of other people’s beliefs is necessary for the sake of what is true and what is good. Every idea in the world is not true, regardless of what relativists claim. And some ideas are harmful, including religious ideas. We have also been critical of our own faith when needed, so when we ask adherents of other religions to analyze their own perspectives, we are not requesting that they do something we ourselves have neglected.” 

“The Bible’s uniqueness in some 20 different areas—including many specific predictions of the future (especially as to the Messiah), theology and content, textual preservation against all odds, the physical resurrection from the dead of its central character, scientific and medical prevision, the miraculous existence of Israel, historic and archaeological accuracy, victory over all criticism, and massive influence in human history—is virtual proof that the Bible comprises God’s revelation to humanity. Because it alone is evidentially and independently verified, at points of conflict all other scriptures are, by definition, false. … The manuscript evidence proving the New Testament’s accuracy is about a thousand times better than for ancient manuscripts that scholars everywhere concede are reliable.”

“Historical facts confirm that the Qur’an has experienced significant corruption through various means. Texts such as The Origins of the Qur’an (edited by Ibn Warraq), though sometimes displaying a rationalistic bias, nevertheless prove beyond doubt that the Qur’an is not a pure text. … Dr. William Miller reveals that for some years after the death of Muhammad there was great confusion as to what material of all that had been preserved should be included in the Qur’an. Finally, in the caliphate of Uthman (644-656 AD) one text was given official approval, and all other material was destroyed.” 

“Buddha did not even claim that his teachings were a unique and original source of wisdom. Buddha always said, ‘Don’t take what I’m saying [that is, on my own authority], just try to analyze as far as possible and see whether what I’m saying makes sense or not. If it doesn’t make sense, discard it. If it does make sense, then pick it up.’” —Clive Erricker

“Internal contradictions in Buddhism make it impossible to know what is true and what is false, leading to an emphasis on subjectivism and experientialism to discover ‘truth,’ rather than upon objective data.” 

“Consider the Wall Street Journal/Heritage Foundation’s ‘Index of Economic Freedom Report.’ From 1995 to 2008, the ‘mostly free’ categories of nations include only some Muslim states, while the ‘mostly unfree’ and ‘repressed’ categories include the large majority of Muslim nations; no Muslim nation exists in the ‘free’ category. Some 600 million souls live in dismal poverty. And it’s not difficult to see why: The average man, woman or child living in a repressed or mostly unfree economy lives a life of poverty on only about $2,800 a year. Compare this with the prosperous residents of the world’s free economies, where the average per-capita income is $21,200, or nearly eight times greater. Put simply, the difference between poverty and prosperity is freedom.”

“Islam may be called a ‘religion of peace,’ but history paints a different picture, no matter how many individual Muslims are peace-loving. The book that most regulates Islam, the Qur’an, is mixed at best in this regard. Entirely different religions, both logically justified, can be extracted from its pages. There are verses about peace and tolerance, but also verses about intolerance, Holy War against non-Muslims, and subjugating the world to the will of Allah. … Evils done in the name of Christian faith have been committed either by nominal Christians who are unbelievers or by deceived believers. In both cases the people are acting inconsistently with Christian faith and the clear teachings of Christian Scripture.” 

“Too few appreciate how critically unique biblical Christianity is when compared to other religions—or the implications. For example, Christianity is the only religion based on the death of its founder, a death that forever altered the course of human history. No other religion has the literal physical resurrection of its founder. Biblical Christianity is the only religion having solid evidence to prove it true. It’s the only religion offering eternal life as a free gift through grace, and the only religion demonstrating beyond the shadow of a doubt that God truly loves us—as demonstrated at the Cross. Biblical Christianity is the only religion to dramatically improve the welfare of humanity in a score of areas.”

Links & Quotes

link quote

These are links to articles and quotes I found interesting today.

I love C.S. Lewis’ interaction with children: “As to Aslan’s other name, well I want you to guess. Has there never been anyone in this world who (1.) Arrived at the same time as Father Christmas. (2.) Said he was the son of the Great Emperor. (3.) Gave himself up for someone else’s fault to be jeered at and killed by wicked people. (4.) Came to life again. (5.) Is sometimes spoken of as a Lamb (see the end of the Dawn Treader). Don’t you really know His name in this world? Think it over and let me know your answer! Reepicheep in your coloured picture has just the right perky, cheeky expression. I love real mice. There are lots in my rooms in College but I have never set a trap. When I sit up late working they poke their heads out from behind the curtains just as if they were saying, ‘Hi! Time for you to go to bed. We want to come out and play.’”

[VIDEO] Sarah Palin has a wonderful Dr. Seuss-like poem for Washington, D.C. insiders.

Frank Viola gets it right in Christianeze Revisited.

I love this reminder from Max Lucado’s book Grace: “Muhammad does not indwell Muslims. Buddha does not inhabit Buddhists. Influence? Instruct? Yes. But occupy? No!” You can read my review of Grace by clicking here.

Did you hear about the pastor who died from a rattlesnake bite while handling one during a church service? Check out What’s With The Snakes?

“Oh! my brethren, it were well if this commendation, so forced from the lips of enemies, could also be compelled by our own example. If we could live like Peter and John; if our lives were ‘living epistles of God, known and read of all men;’ if, whenever we were seen, men would take knowledge of us, that we had been with Jesus, it would be a happy thing for this world, and a blessed thing for us.” —Charles Spurgeon

Helpful post for parents, coaches, and teachers from Dr. Tim Elmore: What’s Trending In Kids Today

I Am Jehovah

I Am JehovahOne of the misconceptions about Jesus that He first appears on the scene in a manger in Bethlehem. Nothing could be further from the truth! Jesus appears in the opening words of the Bible—In the beginning God created—and in the last words of the Bible—Yes, I am coming soon. And He appears in every word in between!

It was Christ’s claims of being one with the Father that enraged the Jewish religious leadership. When He proclaimed His “I Am” statements in the New Testament, they knew He was tying Himself to the “Jehovah” titles of the Old Testament.

B.B. Warfield has a great picture of the Old Testament being a mansion with richly-decorated, beautifully-ornate rooms, but which are dimly lit. So with just the Old Testament by itself, it is hard to appreciate the magnificent beauty that’s there. In Jesus, the light is turned on, and we can now appreciate the glory and majesty that was always there!

So notice how the “I Am” statements shine a bright light on the titles of “Jehovah”

  • Jehovah Jireh (I Am Your Provider) → I am the Bread of Life (John 6:35)
  • Jehovah Rapha (I Am Your Healing) → I am the Resurrection and the Life (John 11:25-26)
  • Jehovah Nissi (I Am Your Source) → I am the Vine (John 15:5)
  • Jehovah Shalom (I Am Your Peace) → I am the Light of the world (John 8:12)
  • Jehovah Raah (I Am Your Shepherd) → I am the Good Shepherd (John 10:11)
  • Jehovah Sabaoth (I Am Your Wall Of Protection) → I am the Gate (John 10:9)
  • Jehovah Tsid-kenu (I Am Your Righteousness) → I am the Way, Truth, and Life (John 14:6)
  • Jehovah Shammah (I Am Here) → I am the Alpha and Omega (Revelation 1:8; 22:13).

In essence Jesus is saying “I Am Jehovah in all His fullness.” So what are we to make of that? What are we to make of Jesus Christ? Here’s how C.S. Lewis addressed that question:

This is a question which has, in a sense, a frantically comic side. For the real question is not what are we to make of Christ, but what is He to make of us? The picture of a fly sitting deciding what it is going to make of an elephant has comic elements about it. But perhaps the questioner meant what are we to make of Him in the sense of ‘How are we to solve the historical problem set us by the recorded sayings of this Man?’ 

The problem is to reconcile two things. On the one hand you have got the almost generally admitted depth of sanity of His moral teaching, which is not very seriously questioned, even by those who are opposed to Christianity. In fact, I find when I am arguing with very anti-God people that they rather make a point of saying, ‘I am entirely in favor of the moral teaching of Christianity….’ 

On the one side clear, definite moral teaching. On the other, claims which, if not true, are those of a megalomaniac, compared with whom Hitler was the most sane and humble of men. There is no halfway house and there is no parallel in other religions. If you had gone to Buddha and asked him, ‘Are you the son of Bramah?’ he would have said, ‘My son, you are still in the vale of illusion.’ If you have gone to Socrates and asked, ‘Are you Zeus?’ he would have laughed at you. If you had gone to Mohammed and asked, ‘Are you Allah?’ he would first have rent his clothes and then cut your head off. If you had asked Confucius, ‘Are you Heaven?’ I think he would have probably replied, ‘Remarks which are not in accordance with Nature are in bad taste.’ 

The idea of a great moral teacher saying what Christ said is out of the question. In my opinion, the only person who can say that sort of thing is either God or a complete lunatic suffering from that form of delusion which undermines the whole mind of man. (emphasis mine)

C.S. Lewis gives us three choices about Jesus. We can either say (1) He is a liar, (2) He is a lunatic, or (3) He is who He says He is.

What do you say about Him?

I will be continuing my series of messages in the series Who Is Jesus? next Sunday, and I’d love to have you join me!

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