What Should We Teach About Evidences?

The study of evidences (or apologetics) is the study of evidence that will convict a person of the truthfulness of God’s word. When one ponders what would be good to teach, four proofs are essential.

First, the proof for God’s existence is an important part of any study in Christian evidence. God’s existence is both provable and knowable. Man can know God exists, and he can know that he knows it. This is a crucial point. If a man cannot know God exists, then he cannot know that the Bible is God’s word. If he cannot know the Bible is God’s word, then he cannot know that Jesus is the Son of God. If he cannot know that Jesus is the Son of God, then he cannot know that he is saved (cp. 1 John 5:13). If the Christian cannot know that God exists, then what distinguishes him from the agnostic?

Amazingly, some today claim that God’s existence is neither knowable nor provable. Instead, they suggest, it merely is more probable that God exists than that He does not. Why cannot those who advocate this idea see the logical results of such a concept? If it merely is more probable that God exists than that He does not, there nevertheless remains a probability (however small) that God does not exist! This notion is false. God’s existence is not a matter of probability. Certainly, God’s existence cannot be proved scientifically, but direct, empirical, scientific proof is not the only kind of proof available. We must not yield to the false concept that God’s existence is unknowable.

Second, the proof of the deity and Sonship of Jesus Christ forms an important part of the study of apologetics. In Acts 8:35 when the text records that Philip, in speaking to the Ethiopian eunuch, “preached unto him Jesus,” and no more, it is because there is no more. The gospel without Christ is no gospel at all. If the deity of Jesus somehow is negated, the Bible falls with it. We must impress upon youngsters that Jesus was exactly Who He claimed to be — and that the evidence supporting His claim is irrefutable!

Any study of Jesus’ deity and Sonship, then, would include an in-depth examination of His virgin birth, His life, His teachings, His miracles, His bodily resurrection from the dead, etc. The historical, philosophical, and biblical evidence supporting Jesus’ deity is overwhelming and is quite capable of documenting that Jesus is who He claimed to be. Young people need to be protected from false doctrines that assert Jesus was simply a “good teacher” or a “wonderful prophet.” Those are not options that Christ left open to us. Either He is who He claimed to be, or He is worse than the devil, for He is both a liar and a hypocrite since He told men to trust their eternal salvation to Him. Young people need to know that Jesus is their risen Lord.

Third, the proof of the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Bible forms an important part of the study of apologetics. Convince a young person that the Bible is not fully inspired and he quickly will realize that God makes mistakes, and therefore is not to be trusted; and if the Bible is not what it claims to be, then there is no objective moral standard to be followed in this life. Evil trees produce evil fruits (Matthew 7:17). With no perfect, pure, trustworthy God — and therefore no objective standard or right and wrong — each man does what he thinks is right (Judges 17:6; cp. Jeremiah 10:23).

Fourth, the proof of creation at the hand of an Almighty God forms an important part of the study of apologetics. We must not allow our children to become convinced that they owe their ultimate origin to the naturalistic processes of Darwinian evolution that allegedly provided them with ancestry rooted in ape-like creatures millions of years ago. Instead, we must ground them in the truth contained within Genesis 1 (and hundreds of other passages) that speaks of the creation of man by God a few thousand years ago. We must help them see that there is a big difference in having evolved by accident from a primordial substance and having been created “in the image of God” (Genesis 1:26-27). If we give our children a false concept of their origin, inevitably they will end up with false concepts of their purpose and destiny!