Paul and Eric interview guest Sye Ten Bruggencate about his debates with atheist Paul Baird.
the following program is made possible by the friends and partners of God quest ministries from the C. T. N. Studio in Pensacola florida, this is creation today where we believe the bible is literally true and scientifically accurate from the very beginning and we are not ashamed to say so I’m one of your hosts eric Open and I’m paul taylor and we’re here each episode two to answer questions about the bible and science cover what’s going on in Creation today and why it matters to you. So if you have questions, feel free to send them into questions at Creation today dot org. Of course, if you’re on twitter you can twitter us at creation today and then facebook facebook dot com slash Creation today. Welcome back to Creation today. We’ve got a special guest here with us today via Skype. His name is Cy 10 Bergen case. I welcome to the show. Thanks for having me our pleasure. I got to meet Sai I want to tell people how I met cy real quick. It was actually an atheist twitter that an atheist said, hey, you gotta go make fun of this website and the website was proof that God exists dot org and I thought well I want to see what the proof is that God exists. Since I remember going to your website and being absolutely amazed at the introduction to your website because you were arguing in a way and presenting God in a way that I had never seen it done before. It blew me away. You’ve seen his website absolutely amazing. Yes and it’s well worth going to visit. So don’t get a big head or anything side, but I really, really enjoyed that. And now, for the past couple of years, I and I’ve had the pleasure I had the pleasure of doing several videos together, different things. And most recently, what’s bringing you on here is the debate that we did with paul baird, round three of an unbelievable debate. That’s sided with paul baird. Uh, tell us a little bit about the history of how these debates took place and how you got the privilege of doing the first couple, I was introduced to a show in Britain called Unbelievable by a friend of mine I listened to and I listened to how the christians were defending their faith. And it was really upsetting for me to listen to how they were defending a probable God with evidence is rather than a certain god that we believe in. So, I contacted the host of the show and I said, you know, could I please engaged one of these atheists on your show? And that’s what started my involvement with paul. And so your first debate was back almost a year ago, a little more than a year ago, in june of 2010, or july of 2000 july july of 2010. Uh, and then the second debate that you had with paul, It was in March of 2011, is that correct? And then this past week, in June of uh of 2011, we had round three of really an unbelievable debate now, round number one, if I can just hit these real quick because we’ve actually got them available at the creation story.org. These debates that took place were actually making them available. Vanna, could you hold that for us, please? Uh and we’ve got all three of them in here. If you want to check them out, you can see all three debates, the first tour on audio cd s and then the one we just did was cy unbelievable. Round number three, I remember the first two debates that as I listened, I went, oh my goodness, poor paul doesn’t stand a chance here, he’s being beaten before you can even get started. That was that was certainly my impression as as as as we listened to the debate. Alright, well, the debate is fresh on my mind, so let’s talk about it for a few minutes here with us. I uh tell us uh kind of exactly why you argue the way you do, because you’re not going to paul saying, hey, here’s a piece of evidence, what you better believe in the resurrection, here’s a piece of evidence, you better believe in the bible, tell us about your approach to it. That’s right. I’m what you would call an apologist. Apologist is somebody who defends their faith, who defends their worldview, but most christians, sadly out there arguing evidence with unbelievers, but what we have to keep in mind is that we get the same evidence as the unbeliever. It’s how we examine this evidence of the beliefs that we take to the evidence, that’s our worldview, and that’s what we actually should be discussing. When we talk apologetics, when we talk about the evidence, we’re gonna interpret that evidence subject to what we already believe. So, I don’t engage the atheist by giving them evidence. What I do is I challenge their worldviews, I challenge their presuppositions and their beliefs that they take to the evidence. Yeah, it’s interesting paul that it’s a size, Sorry, Becky. But it’s interesting the way that you you put that, because um it’s it’s this background to evidence when people are presenting evidence and trying to say this is how this how this evidence proves that God exists, it’s evidence being presented. But you’ve used the sort of courtroom analogy, haven’t you? Said that evidence is presented in a courtroom situation? Just explain to us how that particular analogy works when people are presenting evidence that they believe proves that God exists. So what I do is I ask people, I say, where do you hear evidence most often in the secular world, and most often you hear the term evidence in the court of law, in a court of law who do you present evidence to you present to the judge and the jury, where when we’re presenting evidence to the unbeliever, what we’re doing is we’re saying that you’re the judge and the jury and God is on trial. And scripture tells us not to put the Lord our God to the test, and this is exactly what we’re doing, scripture teaches us that everybody knows that God exists. So rather than present evidence for a probable God, what I do is I expose the fact that the unbeliever really does know that God exists. I think this is so important because I was addressing this in an exchange of emails, not so long since, and the argument that came to me was well you do it your way and I’ll do it my way. And uh you know, the response I had to say was, you know, I had to sort of explain this courtroom analogy that you’ve given because this is the point, a lot of people haven’t thought this through, but what we’re doing and just to reiterate exempt just to say again, exactly what what size just said is that we’re putting God on trial with this with this process and we’re making the unbeliever, the judge and not really, that really hit home with me when I discovered this website in the morning, I got to talk with cy uh for the for the listener out there, if you’re a christian and you are somebody who defends your faith, which you’re supposed to do, God commands us to do that second peter Chapter three, to defend your faith, be ready always to give an answer to everyone that asks you a reason of the hope that’s in you with meekness and fear. So if you’re doing that, how are you doing that? And what this approach does is you listen to this debate and let me just tell you it is a side. I don’t get a big head, but it is a slam. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel when you learn the proper way to defend your faith. You know, the Atheist, the unbeliever has zero chance of survival, doesn’t mean that they will convert to believe what you believe, but because only God can do that. But I’m telling you, man, it is a powerful argument. And so I you and I discussed this on a regular basis how powerful this argument is. Yeah, absolutely. You see apologetics in one Peter 3 15 comes with a warning, with meekness and fear, with gentleness and respect. And the reason that it comes with a warning warning is because we’re destroying worldviews. You know, we know what we believe and we’re challenging the unbeliever rest what they believe. And you notice with a very few questions that their worldview starts to unravel, it doesn’t make us very popular, but it’s a powerful apologetic. And that’s why there are so many warnings in scripture about using this because he did God describes us pulling down strongholds and and really arguing in a way that is very, very powerful. And so this way I’m telling you, you’re going and you’re showing them they can’t even debate without believing in your review. They can’t reason, they can’t think they can’t do anything without your worldview. So, it’s starting from a great, very starting point. That’s one thing that scripture calls the Unbeliever doesn’t say the brilliant philosopher says in his heart, there is no God, it says the fool says in his heart there is no there is no God. And when you start arguing biblically, it’s very quickly expose, expose the foolishness of the unbeliever. But one thing that I want people to keep in mind is that they have a tendency when they listen to these debates to want to mock paul, I want to laugh at paul, but we have to keep in mind that if not for the grace of God, were in his shoes, that we have to pray for paul. Like I don’t engage in these debates in order to win debates, I engage in these debates because I have a love of the unbeliever and I have a love for paul. And although, you know, we do get into some heated discussions, you know, I think it’s important that we realized that if not for the grace of God, that we’d be headed for hell as well and we have to keep that in mind when we listen to paul debate. Well, there’s several points I want to bring up about the debate in the next couple of segments of the show, but I gotta say I really enjoyed the demeanor of both you and paul. I really enjoyed the conversation and this was a debate that we did. We let you guys have a conversation back and forth. So let’s talk with sy Yeah. Talk with a little bit more about that right after this break. Mm hmm. Mm hmm hmm hmm hmm hmm hmm hmm hmm hmm. Yeah, yeah. Mhm. Right. Mhm. Welcome back. You’re watching Creation today with me, paul, taylor and eric Hovan and our special guests. I 10 Bruggen Cate speaking to us from Canada. Thank you for being with us. I glad to be here. Yeah, we got some of these accents going on. You got the english accent which sounds really smart, you got the american accent which is pretty normal. And so we thought we’d bring, you know, something a little lower on the totem pole, the Canadian accent to town. Is that ok? Sai I don’t have an accident speak speaking about nationalities. It was interesting because we wanted to get into some of the points on the debates that we’re talking about that site in Bruggen Cate had with paul baird the eighties from the UK. He insisted on a couple of occasions that is paul baird from the UK insisted on a couple of occasions that things that so I was talking about, We’re do we’re different in Britain the british churches, and, you know, I was just watching from the back seething thinking because he wasn’t talking about churches, that I knew about talking about the larger churches, where in the bible believing evangelical churches in Britain, he hadn’t got a clue about that, but well, for the listeners, when you watch this debate, you’re going to hear, paul basically say I was a christian, but then described nothing like Christianity and say then he says, well, I guess the churches over here are different from the churches over there, and I’m going, you gotta you just that’s your excuse. That’s that’s lame completely an excuse. But let’s let’s let’s have a look at some of the things that were that was said in the debate. And it was interesting that at one point in the debate site, paul was saying that he has changed his views since he started his first debate with you, because, as we said, this was the third really in a series of debates. He described himself first as a soft atheist, but said that now, having gone through these debates, his position has shifted to that of a hard atheist. How did you analyze his position on that? Well, I have to tell you that I get a lot of emails from people who say that after they’ve engaged me or after they’ve seen my website, that they actually become more of an atheist, and I think the case most often is that they’re backed into an intellectual corner and they can no longer respond with an intellectual argument. So they try to hurt me by saying that I’ve actually changed them into becoming a harder atheist. And I’m not saying that’s necessarily the case with paul, but when people say this to me, I see this is actually scriptural in second Corinthians 215, it says that we spread the aroma of the knowledge of Christ and to some people were the fragrance of life and other people were the fragrance of death. And you know, so it’s perfectly biblical, when people are more hardened by our words, I would much rather be used by the holy spirit in paul’s salvation. But it might also be the case that paul becomes more hardened by these words. And the saying goes that the same sun that melts wax hardens clay. And that that paul becomes hardened by this of course, is not something that that I desire. But that is sometimes the case when when we were talking, I talked with paul before the debate started and I asked him, I said, hey, just so you know, here’s some of the questions I’m gonna ask, Where has your journey come from? And where is it going? And he mentioned that this whole idea that he’s gone from a soft atheist to a much more harder atheist. And I said, well sai, you know, that’s really not your goal. The whole purpose of arguing biblically is so that God would use it to soften their heart? And I go, you’re you’re not really accomplishing what you’re trying to accomplish here with with paul. And it’s it’s it can be discouraging, except I think people, people often get the misconception about the role of apologetics. The role of apologetics is not to convert people. I can’t convert one person. The role of apologetics is to speak the truth and the hope that the Holy Spirit uses it to convert people. But that’s totally out of my hands. Yeah. And that really is the key right there. Many of us I know for years, I tried to get the final argument that can really grab somebody the silver bullet, that’s gonna make them to believe in God. There really isn’t one. And we’ve said that many times, there’s no silver bullet, it’s the work of the Holy Spirit. And so by prayer, we must pray that God would use us. And that’s what we pray about this program and we pray about this debate, that people would see the foolishness of trying to argue against God. And uh my humble opinion is that you will certainly see the foolishness of trying to argue against God in this debate. Yeah, that’s one thing that I counsel people with his apologetic. They wonder, you know, it’s such a clear concise argument, why don’t people just fall down and start following you into church, but you’re reading that verse from two timothy 2 24 and maybe you want to read that verse. But it says that repentance becomes before a knowledge of the truth. So much of apologize, people are trying to convince people of the truth of something so that they’ll repent. But the fact of the matter is that they must repent before they can come to a knowledge of the truth. So as much as, you know, we speak the truth to paul, he’s not gonna be able to understand this argument. You can see it’s foolish responses until he repents. He will not be able to get this argument. My life verse. Well, I want to hit that. Do you want to hit something else? And I was just going to sort of add to that and just say, you know, we’re talking about presuppositions and when we when we’re talking about that, we’re not saying that we are the only people with a presupposition, actually, the atheists, like paul also has a presupposition, a different presupposition he’s not neutral in his views when we when we analyze our presupposition, we’re seeing that he has a presupposition too. The point of this is that like the proof that God exists that without him, you can’t know or prove anything, but we’re not saying that the atheist doesn’t know things. Were saying that they do know things, but they suppress the only possible justification they have for knowledge, just as it says in Romans 1, 18-21, they actually do know things, but they suppress their only justification for knowledge. Now, you see paul what he ends up doing. He denies knowledge. He says that he can be wrong about everything he claims to know. And you might want to tell eric what your daughter, Stephanie said when she was seven years old, when she was confronted with this very same thing. I love that. I’m I’m I just found size website. My daughter was seven years old and I uh, I’m pouring her breakfast at the table in the morning. We’re getting ready for school. So I’m pouring her cereal, her favorite honey bunches of oats into the bowl, pour the milk in, stick the spoon in, slide the bowl over to Stephanie and I said, steven, did you know there are some people out there that say we can’t know anything. And my seven year old daughter sat there for a second. She went, well, how do they know that? I went, oh, it’s that’s how simple is that a seven year old could ask the apologetic question that totally takes away the justification the truth that they’re trying to suppress. Yeah, kids kids see the truth of this, but what I challenged paul, when he said, he could be wrong about everything, he claims to know, I said, well, then, basically, you can’t know anything. But actually his problem goes deeper, because when he says he could be wrong about everything, he claims to know. He could be wrong about that too is self refuting claim just as your seven year old daughter pointed out. Yeah, so true. Second timothy, by the way to 22 is my life verse. It says flee also youthful lust, but follow righteousness. Faith, charity, peace with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. The next couple, verses 23 24 25 26 are just incredible. You need to commit these to memory. Let me read this to you, but foolish and unlearned questions, avoid knowing that they do gender strife. There are some questions that it’s good just to not even go there, not even talk about them. Here it is 24. The servant of the Lord must not strive but be gentle unto all men. Apt to teach patient in meekness, instructing those that oppose themselves. If God per adventure here it is, check this out will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth and that right? There is what it’s all about. You don’t get truth until you repent. It takes repentance and then truth comes absolutely right. And we were looking into various aspects of things that were brought that were brought up in the debate between site and Bruggen Cate and paul baird. And we’re going to be picking out some other issues for us to discuss in our next segment. So, we’ll we’ll come back to that. We’ll be discussing those things with our guests like 10 Bruggen cate after this stay with us. Does God exists God himself said that he exists in exodus 3 14? I am that I am yet christians are constantly challenged to prove his reality. Most christians choose to present evidence for God’s existence from reason, from nature and from faith experiences, not site in Bruggen Cate in this three part debate series, unbelievable sigh engages atheist paul baird using what he terms the biblical approach in which God is presented as the necessary foundation for everything. Even the variability to debate, discover how well meaning christians unintentionally put God on trial and their attempts to proclaim the validity of the creator, gain new insight into how to present Jehovah god to the world. In a spirited interchange between two commanding speakers with polar opposite views available on cd. With bonus DVD order the dynamic resource. Unbelievable at www dot creation store dot org. Welcome back to Creation today. I’m Erica van along with paul taylor and special guest this episode site in burgundy all the way from Canada. We just finished a debate between sites and bringing kate and paul Barrett of the U. K. And it’s round three really of an unbelievable debate. Yeah, absolutely. And of course that debate is on this DVD and that’s not the only thing on this DVD. You’re also gonna get to C. D. S that have debates one and two rounds one and two with sides and we’re gonna kate and paul baird along with this very show that we’re producing right now. Yeah that’s a paradox isn’t it? This show is in there. How did we do that? Wow. Well anyway you get that and you will enjoy it. I am sure side I am loving this debate and this approach to apologetics. Um how there’s some things in the debate that I want to discuss and and just let you hit on and let you discuss. Um for example at one point you said um we believe things that don’t make sense. That was one of the phrases you said in there. Can you explain that? Yeah I’m glad you brought that up eric because what I want what I really meant in saying that is that from a human perspective we believe things that don’t make sense. But when we bring God into the picture then it makes perfect sense. For instance we believe in the resurrection of the dead. And when paul defended his faith before King Agrippa in Acts 26 verse eight, he didn’t try to prove that that dead people could come back to life. He says why do you find it incredible that God should raise the dead sea with God in the picture. It makes perfect sense. And the reason that I brought this up is that there are people who say that they used to be christians but they left the faith, but when there’s things that we don’t understand from a human sense, we don’t trust in our own understanding, what we do is to go back to proverbs three verse five and six verses. We lean not on our, on our own understanding, in all our ways that we acknowledge him and he will make our paths straight. So when the unbeliever says, there’s things that they didn’t, they didn’t understand and that caused him to leave the faith, it shows that God was never the authority of their reasoning that that their own reason was always the authority and they were never christians, just as it says in one, john 2, 19, but those who left the faith were never among us. And that’s the case with paul, which I tried to point out in the debate because paul claims to be a christian or claims that he was a christian at one time. Now, when we got into his definition of Christianity, it was nothing like what a christian is, he said, christian didn’t really have to believe that jesus died on the cross, A christian didn’t have to believe that he rose from the dead. You know, it was just that wasn’t necessary to be a christian. Yeah, you said that that was the case in the Church of England. And and I’m glad that paul can give us paul, taylor here can give us an opportunity to tell us that that’s not really the case. No. Well, it is of course, in some, a lot of people say that the Church of England is a three legged stool in terms of theology, there is like three denominations rolled into one because there are many church of England parishes which are anglo catholic, they’re more catholic than the roman catholic church. Quite often, there’s the, the sort of center ground which is the traditional liberal anglicans, which would be as paul baird described. And then there are the evangelical anglican churches that believe the bible to be true. And I was saved in an anglican church like that, that that that that preached the gospel that believed the bible to be true. So there are those anglican churches as well. Yeah, I really thought he was stringing me a line, but I tend to find that that’s the case with paul, is that he says that he wears different hats, but he’ll put on any hat in order to give an answer. But he very rarely debates from his own worldview, and that’s the problem. He’ll put on many hats, but none of them fit. And that was the frustration in this debate is, paul’s whole point is Christianity is not the only world view that can account for for our ability to reason our ability to think other other worldviews, other pagan worldviews can account for that, but he never adopts any of those worldviews from his own perspective, he can’t account for knowledge. He says that other people can I say, well, you know, bring them on, I’ll be happy to debate them. But paul, I want to know how you account for knowledge. And basically he said that he couldn’t know anyth which is our point, and that’s what you kept repeating over and over. Did did you hear that every time? Every time paul would make a statement? So I would go, well, but you could be wrong about that. I love that once he admitted that the debate was basically over. Yeah, that’s right, because that just throws everything out of the window. And it was very interesting when you were talking in an intermission about what you were going to debating in a further section, he actually expressed the desire to debate the subject of morality where morality came from. And what was your your response to that was just very music. Remember what you did there? I asked if if our discussion on morality had to be logical because called denies absolute logic. He also denies absolute morality. But he employed them in his debate against me just showing his inconsistency. It was so funny to hear the pause when you said, does my answer about morality have to be logical? And he went, uh and then he and I believe he ended up saying I’ve listened to it a couple of times and he ended up saying, fine, they don’t have to be logical. And I went, whoa, here, he’s saying that your answer for morality could be yellow, pink, blue Snow, and that’s okay, because it’s a totally illogical answer to morality. And he would have to say, well, okay, I accept that. Yeah, it’s too bad. There was a blip in the audio, right, when he said that, because if I had heard that he said that my actions could be illogical, then I could have had a lot of fun with it. Yeah, well, the whole debate, I think, was was a great success because I, as a moderator, really got to step out of the way, and that’s what I enjoyed was saying. What we did is we gave sy 15 minutes to grill paul and then we gave paul 15 minutes to grill sigh. And whoever’s turn it was they had the option of interrupting, stopping at any time addressing the audience or addressing uh their their opponent. And so it really made for a good debate, a good dialogue that took place there. So I really enjoyed the style of this debate even over the others. Just because there was so much dialogue going on in my opening statement, I said that I could not imagine paul taking my questions head on and you’ll notice he answered my first question directly. But after that he started the dodging and weaving that I’m so accustomed to from him online and from her previous debates. And sadly, that’s how the rest of the debate went. Well, there was some very unusual analogies that he used at one point. He said that he described thought processes as like a chemical reaction, something going on in the head, almost like some chemicals fizzing and and said that, you know, well, if you’ve got a fizzing process, you can’t then describe that fizzing as true or false. And you know, that’s something that you picked up on immediately, isn’t it? Right? He said that you could talk about the result of the chemical process being true or false, but not the process itself. What I’m saying is that the fizz is actually the result of the chemical reaction that’s going on. But let’s take it a step further, Let’s say that this fizz created two puddles on the ground. You wouldn’t call one puddle true and one puddle falls. But that’s basically what paul is doing when he’s saying that his thoughts produce true answers and my thoughts produce false answers if they’re just chemical reactions? So, the absurdity of his position, We’ve got about 30 seconds left to wrap this up. So, do you do you have any final thoughts on the debate overall? How do you feel like it went? You’ve had the opportunity to watch it again. What were your thoughts? Well, I’m glad that I was finally able to ask paul some questions and further explosives. Worldview for what it is. I really didn’t expect any answers from paul, and that seems to be the case. But I hope you realize that unbelievers can’t answer these questions because they’re gonna have the worldview exposed for the foolishness that it is. And what I’m hoping is that the viewers of this debate recognize the folly of denying the God of scripture and when they defend their faith, rather than talk about a probable god that doesn’t exist, declare with authority to certain God that does exist. Well, amen to that. Well, that is our show for today. I appreciate you being with us. I if you have questions, you can get them at questions. You can email us questions at Creation today dot org. Of course we’re on twitter and facebook we want to say, thank you very much, thank you have a great day. All right.