Bill Craig Shares His Personal Testimony of Why He Became a Christian

Don't get me wrong here. I like Bill; very much so. And I respect him as a person. I don't mean to pick on him. It's just that he is one of the world's leading apologists for the Christian faith and he writes something each week on his website, some of which is worthy of further consideration by me. I have challenged Christian apologists to do what I did in the opening chapter of my book, to tell us the initial conditions and reasons why they became Christians in the first place. Bill does so right here. Let me comment...

I'm thankful for his openness and honesty with this. I've argued that people who first choose to believe do not initially have sufficient reasons to do so. I've argued that the initial choice to believe is like putting on "God Glasses," from which all other evidence is subsequently viewed and forced to fit, much like a person who has been brainwashed.

It was only later after having examined my faith more thoroughly that I realized these initial reasons were not good ones to believe. From reading his story I don't think Bill had good initial reasons to believe either. What do you think?

Notice in his personal story his need for happiness, love, genuineness, significance and meaning. Notice also the fact that he read the Bible uncritically along with some Christian books. But think about this. How does someone properly investigate whether a claim is true or not? A person doesn't do it by only reading the literature of the people who advocate it. He does so by also reading the best critiques of the people who disagree with it, and Dr. Craig now knows this. By now he also knows there is a lot of hypocrisy and unhappiness among church people. He was personally "shocked" when a particular pastor friend of a church he attended was caught in adultery nearly 20 years ago, or so. As a Christian I was unhappy for periods of time, and also hypocritical. Surely this has been Bill’s experience as well. It's a human problem that Christianity does not solve. That's why people come to church weekly to get an emotional boost. They come because they are unhappy and hypocritical. Does this subsequent experience of his cause him to doubt the initial youthful rush of friends and the happiness he felt at the time? I suspect so, or it should. By now he also knows the need for significance and meaning isn't a good reason for believing a religious story, since there are many to choose from. He also knows that the Bible was pieced together from several different authors and sources. I'll bet he also can pick up those very same Christian books he first read and find several large holes in their arguments, since apologists disagree with themselves.

So the question I have is whether Bill would've believed in the first place if he knows what he does now. Remember, back then he didn't have any “God Glasses” on, so he was merely investigating the Christian faith as "an outsider." The difference is that the “God Glasses” he now has on provide him with a presumption which causes him to view all of the evidence from that presumption.

I dare say that if he knew what he does now and hadn't already chosen to put on the “God Glasses” he would not have chosen to believe in the first place.

31 comments: