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Focus on the Family Broadcast

How to Answer Challenges to Your Faith (Part 2 of 2)

How to Answer Challenges to Your Faith (Part 2 of 2)

Greg Koukl provides concrete ways to take a stand for our beliefs. He focuses especially on issues within the culture that cause most Christians to falter when faced with challenges from non-believers. He trains us to use questions to whittle away arguments and bring God’s truth to light. (Part 2 of 2)
Original Air Date: October 26, 2023

Preview:

Greg Koukl: Our job then is to go in graciously, understanding the enemy is up there or out there. He is the devil that schemes. We see the schemes and then we maneuver graciously with questions. This is what I found to be the most effective. And in the book, I have lots of examples of specific questions for specific issues. Um, in order to help them to see, trusting that God will take the truth that we’re communicating to them and open their eyes.

End of Preview

John Fuller: Yeah. Well, that’s Greg Koukl and he joins us again today on Focus on the Family. Uh, your host is Focus president and author Jim Daly and I’m John Fuller.

Jim Daly: You know, John, sometimes we could say, “It’s tough being a Christian.” I don’t wanna say that because to me, it’s a joy-

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … even in confrontation and in conflict, I mean, we should have that joyful attitude, I think, and that’s exactly what the Lord and, uh, the writers of the, uh, New Testament, I think, talked about quite often. Uh, and so today, we wanna spend some time with a great guest, uh, Greg Koukl who’s an apologist, which means giving, uh, an answer for why we believe in Jesus and doing that with people that don’t believe in Jesus. We covered some of that material yesterday and if you missed it-

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … get the smartphone or get the downloaded at the website.

John: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Whatever you need to do.

John: Yeah.

Jim: Uh, ’cause it was a really good conversation that sets up today’s conversation as well. And I’m looking forward to it. And the bottom line is how to deepen your ability to talk to non-believers about the Lord.

John: Yeah, in very natural ways. And, uh, Greg Koukl has, uh, founded and is president of Stand to Reason Ministries. Uh, he’s been doing that a long, long time. He’s got a radio show and a podcast and he’s a popular speaker. He’s a terrific author and his latest book is called Street Smarts: Using Questions to Answer Christianity’s Toughest Challenges. And that’ll be, the kind of the foundational tool for us in this conversation. Get your copy of the book, Street Smarts, at focusonthefamily.com/broadcast or call us for your copy. 800 the letter A and the word FAMILY.

Jim: Greg, welcome back.

Greg: Hey, how are you doing?

Jim: (laughs) I’m doing great. I’m excited to get into day two with you-

Greg: Thank you. Me too.

Jim: … because the content was so good.

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: Last time we left off with, uh, the idea that the enemy of our soul, Satan-

Greg: Right.

Jim: … uh, is a liar and a deceiver. And Jesus himself said, uh, he is the Father of Lies.

Greg: Right.

Jim: And you hit that really well last time. Let’s jump off of that and talk about the concept of relativism and why it’s-

Greg: Mm.

Jim: … so dangerous.

Greg: Right.

Jim: And this is, this is kind of a common thing. Well, that’s cool for you. It’s your truth is your truth. And-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: You know, that’s … And maybe define relativism and then move into why-

Greg: Okay, yeah.

Jim: … it’s dangerous.

Greg: Uh, this is an ethic that not only rules the age right now, but it goes all the way back to the garden.

Jim: Mm.

Greg: I call it the primal heresy. But it is a difficult one for some people to understand. So relativism is a take on what it means for something to be true. So when we say that, uh, it’s true that Jesus died for your sins, or, or that God exists or whatever, wh- how are people hearing that? Okay, relativism is the idea that truth is determined by what you believe.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Greg: And therefore, if a person believes something it’s true for them. And if somebody else believes something else it’s just as true for them.

Jim: Mm.

Greg: Okay? And this is why you get pushback from a lotta people because they are thinking relativistically or subjectively about truth claims, especially when they, they come to religion and moral claims too.

Jim: So one might be; and we all get this one; you know, I’m sure all faiths lead to God.

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: That’s a fairly common one. And that-

Greg: That is.

Jim: … all faiths are true and real.

Greg: Uh-huh.

Jim: What would you say to that person?

Greg: Well, you know, it’s interesting because those are two different kinds of statements. L- let me make a contrast. When people say, “This is what I believe and therefore it’s true for me,” that’s relativism, okay? Objectivism is when it’s not the individual’s perspective that makes it true but it’s the way the world is that makes it true. So I c- I … Is it true that we’re doing this broadcast? Well, if we’re doing this broadcast it is true. Whether I believe it or not, it d- … My belief doesn’t change that. Um, and so you have objective truth, the way the world really is, connected to the world out there as it were. And you have subjective truth that is connected to my personal beliefs. So let’s just take the take the claim that all faiths, all religions lead to God. Okay, um, that’s based on a subjectivistic relativistic impulse that everybody has their own view, all right? But when you think about it, it can’t be true that all religions-

Jim: Right.

Greg: … are equally true. Look it … Uh, either Jesus is the Messiah or he’s not the Messiah. One or the other. If he’s not the Messiah, well, the Christians are wrong and the Jews are right. If he is the Messiah, then the Christians are right and the Jews are wrong but they can’t both be right. If God exists; and it might be an open question; he’s either a personal God or not. If he’s impersonal, well then the Hindus are right and the Jews and the Muslims and the Christians are wrong. But if he’s personal, then the Jews and the Christians and the (laughs) Muslims are right and the Hindus are wrong. They can’t both be right, is the point. When you die, oh, maybe you go to heaven or hell, maybe you get reincarnated, may- maybe you lie in the grave but you can’t do them all at the same time.

Jim: Mm.

Greg: So, now that little line of thinking there was just to show that a slogan people toss out all the time that they think is really profound is clearly false. Now, it doesn’t mean that Christianity is true. Maybe my view is false on somebody else. But they can’t all be true. It’s not bigotry. It’s just simple math.

Jim: Yeah. Um, and many Atheists say the existence of evil is the reason they don’t believe in God.

Greg: Mm. Yeah.

Jim: We’ve heard this, you know, so many times from people-

Greg: Yeah. Yeah.

Jim: … that if God were so good, why does evil exist?

Greg: Yeah. Yeah.

Jim: If God were a good God, why do babies die?

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: I think the tragedy of that experience for those who have lost a child-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … you know the deep grief that you have. That’s a question that’s unanswerable in this life.

Greg: Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.

Jim: We don’t know why these things happen-

Greg: Uh-huh.

Jim: … other than it’s not going according to the plan-

Greg: Right.

Jim: … God had for us.

Greg: Right. Right. Well, there’s actually two issues going on here. The problem of evil is a very large problem and one of the issues is why would God do that? Now, this is somewhat speculative and we come up with theodicies which are speculations about why God would allow evil, and, and there are a lotta good ones. But I actually use the problem of evil in a different way with Atheists. Um, I think the problem of evil itself is evidence for God, okay?

Jim: Yeah.

Greg: Um, in 1982 I worked in Thailand. I, I ran a feeding program for a refugee camp there. I was responsible for feeding 18,250 Cambodian refugees-

Jim: Mm.

Greg: … who had survived the Cambodian Holocaust in 1975 to ’79 with the Khmer Rouge and then there was a battle that was still going on with the s- with the Vietnamese. Uh, nevertheless, what, the stories that I heard there w- about what happened under the Pol Pot, under the Khmer Rouge were blood-curdling. Even the things that children would say happened and pictures that they would draw.

Jim: Mm.

Greg: Okay? Now, I tell these stories sometimes when I talk about moral truth and I ask this question, and this is a question that I can ask of the Atheist and that is what do you make of these things that happened in Auschwitz for example, or Pol Pot or, or any of … And a lot of times the Atheists have already given you examples. How could God allow this? And my question then to him; and this is where the questioning technique is so important. What do you make of that? How would you characterize that? What words would you use to describe that? Well, that’s evil. This is wickedness. How could God allow it? Okay, now I have another question. And now this comes back to our conversation about subjectivism, objectivism, relativism, absolute truth kind of thing. I wanna know what he means when he says they’re evil. Now-

Jim: Mm.

Greg: I know what he means. I know … He means what everybody means by this, because they’re not trying to protect turf philosophically. They’re just trying to describe what’s obvious. I said, “Are you describing merely your feelings and your personal beliefs? It’s evil to you kind of thing. Or are you thinking that is evil in itself? Even if people don’t think it’s evil, it’s still evil. They’re mistaken. What is it?” Now, this is a very important question because it is making the distinction between subjective moral truth and objective moral truth and this response the Atheist and anyone has is naturally that this is objectively evil. Now, sometimes Atheist is gonna fudge at this point when he realizes that his own view is being challenged, okay? But let me just play this out because, uh, this is powerful. Um, everybody knows, no matter where they lived or when they lived, that something is wrong with the world. That’s the problem of evil, okay? And it … The world is broken. The world out there is broken, okay? So when I … When they identify evil in the world I wanna know when you say this is evil, w- what is wrong with it? And, I mean, there are lots of ways to ask this question but what I’m trying to get at, to say something is good or bad, you have to have a scoring system. They shouldn’t have done this. This isn’t the way the world is supposed to be. Okay, I agree. It’s not the way this, this world is supposed to be. But that means if it’s not the way the world is supposed to be, then there is a way the world is supposed to be. And you can’t have a way the world is supposed to be without a disposer, okay?

Jim: Right.

John: (laughs)

Greg: Okay. Let me put-

Jim: Who’s setting the rules.

John: Yeah.

Greg: Yeah, that’s right. There- there’s got to be a rule maker. There’s got to be a lawmaker. Here’s another way of putting it. I ask people, “Can you break the speed limit on the the Autobahn in Germany?” “No.” “Why not?” “‘Cause there is no speed limit.” Right. If there are no objective moral rules you can’t break them. No laws, no breaking. But there is broken laws in the universe. That’s the problem of evil. So we must have objective laws. That’s the argument that gets relativism. Everybody really knows deep down inside there are common sense moral realists. They know there’s right and wrong even when they deny it, okay? Um, now I have the other question then. Where did those laws come from? Okay? When, when there are speed limits it’s because there’s a government that passes the law. What about the speed limits in the universe that are broken when you complain about the problem of evil? Where do they come from? Now, this is called the moral argument for the existence of God. So it’s been around for a long time but I try to put it in, in the book step-by-steps in ways that people can under- understand it and offer some questions that will help them in a conversation with others. Notice that I try to role play that using the kinds of questions that would require a response from someone else. What I want people to see is everybody believes that morality is objective which is why they complain about the problem of evil. But if morality is objective there must be a moral lawmaker behind it.

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Greg: Without God, there can be no problem of evil. There is a problem of evil, therefore there is a God. Now, that leaves unanswered this other question. Why would God do that?

Jim: Mm.

Greg: And I think there are lots of ways to probe that out but n- the simple fact is the problem of evil turns out to be one of the best arguments for the existence of God and not against the existence of good.

John: Mm.

Jim: Yeah. It’s good.

Greg: That’s what I want the Atheist to see.

John: Yeah. This is Focus on the Family with Jim Daly and our guest today is Greg Koukl and, uh, he mentioned a book that’s called Street Smarts: Using Questions to Answer Christianity’s Toughest Challenges. And, uh, it’s an excellent resource if you’re a person of faith or if, uh, you’re confronting faith and you’re not sure. Uh, get a copy of the book from us here. Uh, our number is 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY. Uh, or stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast.

Jim: Greg, Focus has existed for 45 years-

Greg: Uh-huh.

Jim: … and we’ve always been a pro-life organization.

Greg: Right.

Jim: And we will always, in my mind, continue to be a pro-life organization-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … very staunchly. We’ve got lots of great programs like Option Ultrasound and other things that we’re doing to help a woman make-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … the right choice, the better choice for life.

Greg: Right.

Jim: And I’m really proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish over the last 45 years. But in the culture this is getting more and more-

Greg: Right.

Jim: … dangerous.

Greg: Right.

Jim: Uh, not long ago I think Congress met and some in the Congress from a particular party were wearing badges that said “Heart abortion.

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Love abortion.” That is very different from 20 years ago-

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: … when it was kind of begrudgingly accepted under Roe v. Wade-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … that, you know, it’s a necessary evil you might say.

Greg: Mm-hmm. It’s a tragic decision-

Jim: But it should be-

Greg: … that women have to make. Right.

Jim: It should be rare and, uh-

Greg: Right, right. Or safe and rare.

Jim: Safe and rare.

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: And … but now, those same politicians are high-fiving each other-

Greg: Oh, it’s amazing.

Jim: … about the taking of life.

Greg: Just amazing. You can see-

Jim: There’s no, no soft heart toward that deed. It’s all hard-hearted.

John: Mm-hmm.

Greg: That’s right. It’s such an obvious spiritual dimension. The darkness is so incredible. When you think about what happened on 9/11 2000, 977 people lost their lives on American soil in a terrorist attack. Um, that’s actually less than the average number of children that are murdered every single day through abortion for the last 50 years. This is a blithe on, on our entire history. So, um, this is really critical that Christians be able to address this and the sides are really galvanized now because of the-

Jim: Oh-

Greg: … Supreme Court decision about, uh, Roe versus Wade.

Jim: And, and so what I wanna do is spend a few minutes-

Greg: Sure.

Jim: … like you did in the book, uh, talking about this specific issue because it comes up all the time.

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: And let’s get into that. Um, I, I thought some of these, uh, responses, these questions that you’ve posed are literally brilliant. I’ll play the antagonist and you, you deliver the response.

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: Abortion’s a private choice between a woman and her doctor, Greg.

Greg: Oh.

Jim: You can’t get involved in that.

Greg: Does a woman have the right to take the life of her two-year-old in privacy with her doctor’s consent?

Jim: Absolutely not.

Greg: Not? Okay, so the issue isn’t a woman’s choice or the doctor’s consent. The issue is the question what is the unborn?

Jim: What’s its definition, right?

Greg: If the unborn is a human being like your two-year-old then choice isn’t gonna help you here.

Jim: Mm. Let’s go to another one. Many poor women, Greg, can’t afford to raise another child. They just simply don’t have the money.

Greg: Okay, so if we have children, two-year-old, that we can’t support because of our income, is it okay to take the life of those kids?

Jim: Yeah, absolutely not.

Greg: No, of course not. So the real question here isn’t whether a person is poor or not. The real question is whether that two-year-old and the unborn are actually the same. The question is what is the unborn?

Jim: Mm. I’m gonna keep going ’cause these are that good.

Greg: Awesome. Yeah. Right.

Jim: A woman shouldn’t be forced to bring an unwanted child into the world, Greg. Where’s your compassion?

Greg: Well, a lotta people are unwanted. A lotta homeless people are unwanted. So can we take their lives too?

Jim: Powerful.

John: Mm.

Greg: Yeah. Unwanted isn’t the issue. The issue is the question what is the unborn?

Jim: And here’s the classic. Who are you to force your morality on these women who are struggling?

Greg: Well, the question is what are they struggling with? Well, they have a un- unintended pregnancy, okay? If that child was two years old, um, would I be able to torture that child? No. Well, who are you to force your morality on me regarding that other child? Okay, there are a lotta different ways to put this but the question here always comes back to this one question, what is the unborn? So usually, I set that up first by asking a question of the pro, uh, abortion person and I say, “If you were working at your table or the sink or your computer or whatever and your child comes up behind you and says to you, ‘Mommy? Daddy? Can I kill this?’” Okay, they’re behind you. You can’t see what they’re doing, uh, and what they’re referring to. What is the first question you must have answered before you can answer-

Jim: What is this?

Greg: What is this? Of course. What is it? If it’s a cockroach, kill it. If it’s a spider. Uh, if it’s your, a puppy, what a minute. If it’s your brother, hold on. We got to have a talk. Okay, now what this does is establishes a principle that we can’t know whether it’s right or wrong to kill something unless we know what that something is. Abortion takes the life of something. People say, “Well, nobody knows when life is … begins.” I ask a question. “Is it growing?” “Yeah, that’s the problem.” Well, then it’s alive. We know it’s alive. You wanna kill it, whatever it is. Whether it’s right or not, to kill that thing that’s growing inside a mother’s womb depends on what it is. That’s the key here. And so, the key question is what is the unborn, okay? And that is the key question to the rest of the debate because if the unborn is not, uh, a valuable human being, get the abortion. You don’t need to talk about choice or preference or finances or inconvenience or anything. Just get the abortion. No justification for abortion is necessary but if the unborn is a valuable human being, no justification for abortion is adequate-

Jim: Mm.

Greg: … because we don’t take the lives of innocent human beings for the reasons people give for abortions. And that was that set of questions that we went through together a little bit here.

Jim: Yeah. Yeah.

Greg: If the unborn is a human being, you know, choice isn’t the matter. Y- i- the, your doctor’s consent doesn’t matter. Your privacy is not relevant to this question. We’re talking about a living human. Can’t afford? Well, you don’t get rid of human beings we think we can’t afford.

Jim: Mm.

Greg: There are alternatives, okay? None of these justifications are adequate. So, my approach and all the subsequent questions as we deal with some of these issues on the abortion question in the book all have to do with the central feature and that is what is the unborn?

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Greg: And the question that are meant to follow. “Well, this is just my body.” Oh, really? Does the unborn have your DNA? “No.” Well, then it’s not your body, strictly speaking. It’s in your body. It’s not your body. Wha- what would your body be producing in there, in a uterus, right? Your body would be producing your child. So, we’re talking about an innocent, defenseless human being. Is it okay to kill an innocent, defenseless human being for the reasons you’re giving right now?

Jim: Mm.

Greg: That’s the issue. And a lotta this rhetoric has been meant to cover what’s really going on. People say, “Oh, I should have the right to an abortion.” I say, “What’s an abortion?” “You know, when I terminate the pregnancy.” “Well, how do you terminate a pregnancy?” “Well, you kill something.” “Oh, how do you kill it and what is it you’re killing?”

Jim: Yeah.

Greg: What I’m trying to do is take the wraps off quietly, gently, with appropriate questions so people can see what they’re advocating is taking the life of an innocent child.

John: Mm.

Jim: And Greg, I wanna be sensitive obviously in, in women that have had abortion. We need-

Greg: Yes.

Jim: … to be mindful that there is grace in Christ.

Greg: Oh, absolutely.

Jim: That’s what the whole thing is and-

Greg: Absolutely.

Jim: Y- you know, I, we’re not trying to condemn that decision that may have occurred years ago, months ago, days ago. I don’t know who’s listening.

Greg: Every, every sin is forgiven with Christ thankfully.

Jim: Correct. And so that’s part of it. But also, we wanna be in the discussion, in the debate-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … asking the questions because, you know, again, I would think many people never thought Roe v. Wade would be overturned-

Greg: Right.

Jim: … with the Dobbs decision, yet it has been.

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: So it puts the debate squarely back up on the table in-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … all 50 states.

Greg: That’s right.

Jim: And it is a moment in time where people should be better informed about what does abortion actually do.

Greg: Right.

Jim: So I applaud those efforts.

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: And I don’t think really objectively anybody can argue with any veracity that it’s not a baby.

Greg: Yeah. This argument is totally on our side and, um, and should be-

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Greg: … given the facts. But there’s so much rhetoric that’s going on. Even when people ask about what about rape and incest? Um, but the question they were asking right now is they were trying to find out whether the pro-lifer has a heart, you know? (laughs) And, and the answer is first, you know, i- ha- express the heart. Is that a circumstance that happened to you?

Jim: Mm.

Greg: And for us to express a, you know, a genuine grief about when that terrible event happens in a woman’s life. But do we complicate the crime of rape with the crime of murder?

Jim: Mm.

Greg: Why should the child be held responsible for that?

Jim: Yeah.

Greg: So, uh, uh, there are ways to maneuver in all of these circumstances, but the core issue is so critical. And the facts of the matter are pretty straightforward. The key is maneuvering with the questions. Well, I spent a lot of time in the book giving dialogues-

Jim: Mm-hmm.

Greg: … to help people understand the moral logic of the pro-life view, the kinds of questions to make all of these things clear.

Jim: Yeah. Yeah. Let’s, uh, with the last few minutes here let’s just, uh, talk again about gender. We’ve talked a bit about that but that thing is right in everybody’s face today.

Greg: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Jim: It’s in public schools. I just read the other day about a student who was whisked away silently by the school administration and without the parents knowing anything about it-

Greg: I know.

Jim: … and was given hormone treatment-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … encouraged to get operations-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … that will change their body image to fit their under gender identity.

Greg: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Jim: Um, when you look at that we’re back to this bizarre objective, subjective truth thing.

Greg: Yeah, that’s right.

Jim: Um, y- speak to that issue. And I think hit the churches that are weakening on this-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … because, uh, they feel the pressure socially.

Greg: Right.

Jim: And they want … Okay. They want the doors open. They want everybody to come in.

Greg: Right.

Jim: I love what our good friend, uh, John Berks says, down in Austin, Texas at his church. He says, “Come as you are, but you can’t stay that way.”

Greg: That’s right. That’s right.

John: Mm.

Greg: This is, uh, arguably right now the most heated thing on the table in our culture and it is so heated that it’s hard to imagine how one could make much progress in this issue at the moment.

Jim: Everybody’s entrenched.

Greg: Yeah. And so, uh, I think there’s gonna be progress in the future when the, the legal (laughs) when the lawyers start getting involved. And that’s what happened in Great Britain and that put all this to halt. But on an individual basis it’s very difficult for Christians. I think the biggest thing I’m concerned is with the, the compromise. Now the, uh … When Jesus was asked about divorce and remarriage, Matthew 19, here’s how he started. “Have you not heard or have you not read that from the beginning God made them male and female?” Why did he start with gender?

Jim: Mm.

Greg: Because God has set up a system in the beginning, Genesis 1 and Genesis 2, for human flourishing. The system God made was good. He made male and female be fruitful and multiply. General, chapter 1. Chapter 2. “A man will leave his mother and father,” gender is binary in G- in God’s view. “And cleave to his wife.” The two become one flesh. And then Jesus says, “What God has joined together let no man separate.” Okay, that’s the other half. So we have binary gender that makes it possible to be fruitful and multiply and then God sets up in the second chapter marriage in a very particular way. It’s interesting. Jesus’s comments cover everything there. Jesus never said anything about homosexuality. Jesus never said anything about marriage. Jesus never said anything about gender. Wh- it’s all right there. Notice that every single thing that the Bible, um, prohibits with regards to sexuality, uh, h- homosexuality, heterosexual fornication, adultery and bestiality are all prohibited by Jesus’s statement there which can be summed up very easily. God’s plan is one man with one woman becoming one flesh for one lifetime.

Jim: And so Greg, that … you mentioned that, the heart, a moment ago. You know, where’s the heart when it comes to the abortion issue or to this-

Greg: Mm-hmm.

Jim: … LGBTQ issue. I mean, the one thing that is so true is that i- our heart breaks for people that are-

Greg: That’s right.

Jim: … gender confused. It’s-

Greg: Right.

Jim: I would not wanna be in that place.

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: I’m thankful that God allowed me to live the life that I’ve lived. But it doesn’t mean someone should linger there and stay there. We’ve got to do what we can as a culture to help people get on the-

Greg: Mm. That’s right.

Jim: … better track, the healthier track because the, the track record if you stay there is not happy.

Greg: 20 times the suicide rate for transgendered.

Jim: Yes.

Greg: Even, even after the surgery. And this is true even in Sweden where they’re much more sanguine about this tha- than in the United States. So something is wrong and there’s a brokenness there. And genuine, uh, gender dysphoria is a terrible circumstance and w- we ought to be super compassionate. But the fact that we don’t wanna go along with the trend now is because we’re compassionate and we know this is brokenness, this isn’t help.

Jim: Greg, right at the end here. Uh, man, we have talked these last two days about a lotta great stuff. Uh, what’s your final word to that person that’s going, “Okay, I hear you guys but man, I get beat up every time-

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: … I mention this to my, my family member, my friend, my professor at school.”

Greg: Sure. That-

Jim: I mean, what, what do you wanna say to encourage them?

Greg: Look, and if y- if you go physically out on the street and you’re beat up all the time-

Jim: (laughs)

Greg: … well, then you better get smart, all right? You better get street smart. You better figure out how to navigate in the street physically and which places to go or defend yourself, whatever. Uh, same thing is true in spiritual arena. We have a tough street out there right now. It’s uncomfortable for Christians. They’re sitting on the bench ’cause they don’t know how to engage. They got to get street smart and that en- that entails getting a perspective, understanding what’s going on spiritually and in terms of the issues. Learning some of the questions they can ask to engage and then begin to engage in gracious, loving ways.

Jim: Yeah.

Greg: And they will be astounded on the impact on the impact they’ll have.

John: Mm.

Jim: You know I (laughs) I, I don’t know how many times I can end, John, but (laughs)-

John: (laughs)

Jim: You know, I had lunch with a, a, a secular man who’s doing great work in education. He’s come from the left, is now on the right. David Horowitz. And we were having lunch and it was just so funny ’cause he said, “Jim, don’t you know you’re in an alley fight with these people?

Greg: (laughs)

John: That’s right.

Jim: “And they have switch blades.”

Greg: Ah.

Jim: I said, “David, no. We get that. We’re not stupid. But, you know, our call, our weapons are love, joy, peace, goodness, gladness, mercy, long suffering.

Greg: Yeah.

Jim: The fruit of the spirit.” And he went, “Wow, those are bad weapons.” (laughs)

Greg: (laughs)

John: (laughs)

Greg: We-

Jim: Which I think Jesus got some of that.

Greg: Yeah, we have a s- … They have switch blades, we have a sword.

Jim: Yeah.

Greg: Sword of the spirit.

Jim: Sword of the spirit. Sword of truth.

Greg: The Word of God. Yeah, Sword of truth. Yeah.

Jim: And that’s the way to look at it. But man, it is hard to stay in the character of Christ. But-

Greg: Yeah. Critical. Absolutely.

Jim: … we need to or we’ve already lost.

John: Mm-hmm.

Greg: Yes, absolutely.

Jim: Thank you, Greg, for being with us.

Greg: It’s a pleasure, of course.

Jim: This has been good. And I hope … Man, I hope this has motivated you to say, “Okay, this is a resource that’s worth (laughs) picking up.” And I believe in it. And if you can make a monthly gift, that’s great. It evens out the budget here at Focus and helps us. Or a one-time gift. We’ll send you a copy of Greg’s book as our way of saying thank you. Also, I believe in the content so much, if you can’t afford it I’m gonna trust others will be able to cover the cost of that and we’ll get it in your hands. Just call us, because we believe in this content.

Greg: Mm.

Jim: And Focus is here to equip you, especially in this area of evangelism and discipleship. So get in touch with us. I think I’ve taken all the excuses away. All you got to do is call or go to the website.

John: Yeah. Yeah. Donate as you can. Uh, maybe pay it forward so somebody else can get this book even though they can’t afford it. Our number is 800, the letter A and the word FAMILY. 800-232-6459. Or stop by focusonthefamily.com/broadcast. Well, join us again tomorrow as we take a look at six different ways to be generous with others.

Preview:

Brad Formsma: But you know what? God’s not about a duty on this. We get to give. He loves us. He wants us to experience joy in giving and it’s good for us when we, when we give.

End of Preview

Today's Guests

Street Smarts: Using Questions to Answer Christianity's Toughest Challenges

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