Hi Alan, I really appreciate James White, and the topic of paedobaptism vs. credobaptism has long interested me. This should be an instructive debate. Slightly off topic, yet I think on a somewhat related note, I'm planning to play the role of a skeptic for the high school kids in my local church in the near future. Their objective will be to defend against the premise that "a loving, merciful God would not allow suffering", which will be my stated objection to the existence of the kind of God articulated by Christian theism.In preparation I've been reviewing a few select theodicies to brush up on the problem of evil since my role is to dialogue with and "push" the students similar to an encounter they may have with an unbelieving adult family member, boss at work, teacher/professor, etc. I'm a 5-Point Calvinist with strongly VanTillian presup leanings as far as apologetics goes.To be frank I'm struggling a bit to decide how to go about arguing against beliefs I hold strongly, so I'm curious about which arguments you've encountered that you think are the strongest/most persuasive/most compelling contra a Biblical theodicy. Any and all feedback from you and/or the other T-bloggers on this topic would be much appreciated. I'd like to make the experience as valuable as possible for our teens so they would be challenged and become better equipped to be "always ready".Thanks in advance!
Go to YouTube and search for atheism or arguments about God. Watch some of the most popular videos by skeptics. A lot of these are meant for a popular audience and will reflect typical arguments they will encounter in regular conversation. The British ones can be particularly scathing.Strongest current arguments, in terms of rhetorically persuasive, are about homosexuality and Old Testament genocide, especially 1 Samuel 15 and Deut. 20. Also, of course, the holocaust.Bottom line: your students are on social media already, so I would start there.More later if you want. I am on my phone at the moment.
Thanks for the suggestions Matthew! I was also considering a line of argument along the contours of suffering caused by natural disasters, disease; etc. Sort of the old "either the God of Christian theism is all loving or He is all powerful, but based on the observable evidence He can't be both".
This should be interesting. I look forward to watching the debate.