April 16, 2010

Reflections on the Bart Ehrman Debate and the Problem of Suffering

Audio Link to Ehrman-Brown Debate

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14 Comments
  1. Dear Dr. Brown,
    I enjoyed the debate so much! I was so blessed and encouraged with your approach and gracious and humble way you represented our heavenly Father and His heart. I realize nobody can give all the answers, neither you, but there was God’s wisdom streaming through your words last night.
    In regards to Dr. Ehrman’s arrogance and sarcasm, he is a lost man who desperately needs liberty in Jesus, just as I did. I’ve noticed at least four important things you did in reaching out to him:
    1. You didn’t condemn his unbelief
    2. You told him you were interceding for him during your prayer&worship time with God
    3. You mentioned powerful encounter that brother Yesupadam had with Jesus
    4. You gave him a present
    I feel that these four things could easily overshadow all wise words that were spoken, it’s pure Kingdom principle.
    My family is so blessed with you and your ministry. Keep running the good race!
    Greetings from (Canadian) Niagara Falls!
    Jaro
    P.S. Candy bars vs caviar – good point 🙂 LoL

  2. Dr. Brown I think that was a great debate. One thing you said that really was interesting to me was “who are we to tell God how to run His universe?” Not as an excuse to why we suffer, but it really made me think, I mean God doesn’t work at burger king, you don’t “have it your way”.

    I am sure God will have all sorts of great answers when we get to heaven, but also like you said God doesn’t always tell us what we want to know, but what we need to know. I know that my own personal testimony was one of the worst and best things that ever happened to me. So I wouldn’t ask God “why did I have to go through that?” Because I wouldn’t of known God if I did not go through what I did.

    Bless you all! Have a GREAT weekend!

  3. Dr. Brown, thanks for the debate. I thought you handled yourself pretty well. The next time you talk with Bart please tell him that his weak arguments strengthened my faith. That is not meant to slam him in any way but conveys my “contextual” research into what he said. The more I listen/read people like Bart I find that “context” normally plays no role in what they call their highly developed “reasoning”. When I went back and looked at Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Amos a simple contextual reading shows how really inane his arguments are. These kinds of things show me that they are grasping at straws to justify their emotional rebellion against God. Also, it shows me that PhD really does stand for “Piled Higher and Deeper”.

  4. I thought Dr.Brown was far better with his answers,statements and opinions than Dr.Ehrman.I believe the lord used Dr. Brown to get his message out and as a witness. I got more out of the debate than I ever thouhgt I would.Dr. Brown explained the suffering in the world as its related to the Bible very well.I came away from listening to the debate with a better understanding.It seems to me that Dr. Erhman believes in God,he’s just mad at him.He also seems to be very bitter.We should keep him in our prayers. Praise The Lord!

  5. Maybe I should download this to listen.

    Before sin entered the world there wasn’t any suffering. Since then the righteous suffer because of the wicked, the wicked suffer for their own sins as well as the just. The just get raised up again because of Jesus but the wicked seem to go on their
    very way.

    Who can fault a man for receiving an abundance of revelations from the Lord? Yet the apostle Paul suffered much because of them. (II Cor 12:7)

    Through much trouble we must enter the kingdom. (Acts 14:22)

    If we want to read about suffering we can read about Job or read about Jesus and his death. Job suffered for his sins and Jesus suffered for mine. Who can know the things of a man but the spirit of God that is in him?

  6. A very insightful passionate debate. I dont know if anyone caught it but Bart gave the proverbial answer himself to Michaels question about the 3 different cases of suffering. Bart said he would sit in silence and (( “suffer with them” ))…Well isnt that exactly what Jesus came to do 4 us? Suffering with us and 4 us while at the same time giving us a true hope to the end of all suffering by showing us a willingness to enter into our suffering.
    The bottom line is Love is greater than suffering and death and this is what God is really asking us to believe….my 2 cents

  7. I think you hit it right on the head Dr Brown when you said “Bart thinks narcissism is the answer” blink and you could miss you say that, this is huge i have heard lectures on the modern mans view of self and it is very depressing. The modern man and culture is narcissistic focusing on self and in turn becoming more self conscious to the exclusion to the rest of the world and truth.

    The only way to break this vicious cycle of self consciousness and self focus is to focus on the Truth of the situation which may not be seen or heard but the objective truth is God lives and rules in the kingdom of Heaven and the kingdom of men. This is hard to get across in writing for me but the problem with modern man is that he is focuses to much on his self and like narcissus when he falls in love with his own image it will eventually destroy him.

    When Job seen God his problems were blown away not by reason but by the Glory of God, and he was no longer focusing on himself at that point !

    When we don’t reflect the image we were made in and want to reflect our own image in we are miserable and can make sense of nothing.

    Do we have all the answers ? …no

    Science can give us facts but Christianity can give us the proper interpretation of these facts and without it nothing makes any sense least of all suffering. In my opinion Christianity has the only valid logical answers for the problem of suffering.

    The glory of God !

    thank you Dr Brown good job.

  8. One of the things that really surprised me, was when Dr. Brown mentioned that Bart Erhman’s book he stated that he would wake up in a sweat at night not knowing if he made the right decision of walking away from the faith. That just tells me that Bart Erhman is not even sure of what to believe only taking side because of personal experience and somehow justifying that we a distorted interpretation of scripture. I let his emotions and rebellious nature to appeal to his stance on suffering.

    The only thing left to do is to pray for God’s mercy and grace to allow him to realize his mistake.

    God Bless You Dr. Brown

  9. Great job Dr. Brown, you defended the Greatness of God and won the debate! Thank you for your heart to “set the record straight.” Dr. Ehrman is truly in need of God’s grace or he will suffer eternally in hell fire- May God have mercy on his soul!

  10. As a former student of Ehrman’s, I had the opportunity to hear him share his “deconversion.” I got the chance to sit with him over lunch and chat, and for those who have never met him in person, he is a wonderfully engaging person. He is an even better lecturer. It is probably no exaggeration to say that he is the most prayed for man in NC…as was noted by, I believe, Dr. Brown.

    That being said, I think that as with all great speakers that are agnostic, much of their enthusiasm in speech is an emotional appeal to the audience as opposed to actual conviction of their position. Indeed, agnosticism assumes a lack of conviction. So passion about being unsure of something is strange indeed. So when one listens to him lecture in class, or debate, keep in mind that he passionate about the subject matter, but admittedly agnostic in his conclusions about God’s existence.

    Let us all continue to pray for him, for his family, for his students at UNC, and I pray for the day where he is able to share his reconversion story to his class of several hundred students each year.

  11. Dear Dr. Brown:

    Ijust read on James White’s Web page that he ws apparently on your show yesterday,and he was mouthing off about the LDS church. James White is a fraud. I hae sent him the site below more than once. It is from a Southern Baptist minister who has really read the Book of Mormon. James has refused to reply or comment on what it proves, that the BoM is completely Christian and does not contradict the Bible. James says that he has read it, but he is lying. You haven’t read it either. Do you have the balls to comment on this site? Can you make James enough of a man to respond? I doubt it.

    http://www.centerplace.org/library/bofm/baptistversionofbofm.htm

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