One obstacle many Christians face when it comes to defending the Christian faith is the question of how do we know that the Bible is accurate and credible?
Ravi Zacharias was asked this question at the Question and Answer session at the University of Illinois. Watch the 5 minute video above to hear his response.
“If you’ve got an honest sceptic, the way you answer those questions is by asking questions of the questioner. Jesus did this repeatedly. If you notice the number of people to whom He talked who came to Him with a question. He questioned the questioner because questioning the questioner does two things:
1. It helps the questioner open up within his or her own assumptions.
2. It determines the entry point of the discussion.”
“What you’re doing is building a world view from the existential tug point of the questioner and that’s where you start. You start where the existential rub is legitimately felt. To cerebrally go with the documents of the Old and the New Testaments for example, as important as it might be for a theological student or a seminarian, for many a questioner that it totally unimportant. Or at least they have dismissed it as not being able to stand up to the scrutiny of study of document authenticity. So, you have to go from a world view.”
“If you go to parts of the Middle East today for example, where you will find somebody from an Islamic background who is becoming a Christian. Ninty-nine percent of the time, you will find the person who says ‘I have now committed my life to Christ from that former belief system’, will say to you it either happened from a dream or vision he or she had or the loving example of another Christian that won them over.”
“After they come to know Christ is when the apologetic struggle begins, because the need has been met existentially and now they don’t know how to deal with the questions that are being tossed.”
“If God Himself comes to individuals on the basis of their deepest felt needs and struggles, I think that’s where we need to begin too. The woman at the well had all kinds of questions about worship on this mountain and or mountain, and He pointed out to her what her real problem was – that her life was fragmented and broken, her life was shattered. He knew everything about her and yet offered her the drink that would make her never thirst again.”
“So, I think you have to deal with [the question] at the felt point of the individual’s struggle. The other intellectual issues are very real but they’re not to be brought in at an introductory stage, because it just leaves it in the cognitive realm rather than dealing with where the struggle really is.”
“Now, if the person says to you out right, ‘I cannot accept the Bible as an authority for the following reasons…’ then you begin there. But if you are introducing the Scriptures and the person says ‘I don’t accept that’, you move the conversation seamlessly to ‘why not?’.”
Listen to 'Just Thinking' with Ravi Zacharias weekdays on Vision Christian Radio. Find your local times here.
In a recent Question & Answer session at Yale University in the US, a student asked Ravi Zacharias: ‘What brings us to believe that Christianity is the exclusive way to truth?’ More...