Christianity TV USA Videos

The Good Society? A Discussion on The Handmaid’s Tale

This is our latest Third Space video – which you can get on our website. 

It is a discussion of The Handmaid’s Tale and what it says about Christianity and society….the good and the bad…religion, misogyny, fundamentalism, dystopia, truth and beauty…..enjoy…


The Handmaid’s Tale – An American Dystopia?


  1. What has ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ got to do with the good news of the Gospel? It is nothing…has nothing to do with salvation in the name of Jesus. If people are going to consider and adhere to all the movies, books, pamphlets, events and all worldly opinions, then they are going to be greatly disappointed, unsatisfied and lost. The bible is a Holy and Living thing…that woos a person with the innate desire to know God the creator of all things. Why waste time debating, discussing something that isn’t of God. All people from all walks of life, from ancient to the latter days will bow before Jesus and confess all; the good, the bad and the ugly. And needless to say…’The Handmaid’s Tale’ has nothing to do with a person’s salvation standing before God. A person is responsible for his/or her sins and salvation; it has nothing to do with worldliness or the past wrongs/sins of others. Salvation comes from hearing God’s Holy Word alone. Repentance is a good sign if a person is saved or not. People who have truly accepted the works of Jesus on the Cross for their sins, will not and cannot indulge in sins or wrong doings. If a person, especially someone who claims to be a Christian asks you to do something against God’s Holy Word; rebuke him or her and have nothing to do with it. Claim the works of the Christ on the Cross and shun all evil. Idol worship, movies, ungodly books. The Handmaid’s Tale {which I have not & will not see} is a distraction & diversion of satan; anything to keep a person/persons resentful, bitter, suspicious and disregarding the need of the Cross.

    1. “All people from all walks of life, from ancient to the latter days will bow before Jesus and confess all.”

      Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ presents a hyperbolic vision of just this sort of totalitarian mentality.

    2. My understanding is that they are trying to find ways of engaging with the culture, and of interpreting the culture from a Christian world view. How can you possibly do this without finding out about the culture. How can you engage with people if you don’t know something about what they are engaging with? How could David Wilkerson have really helped the drug addicts and others in New York if he had no idea what they were doing or what their challenges were?

      Different people have different callings. What is ok for some people because of their calling may well not be ok for people with different callings. It is far too easy to misunderstand and criticise those whose callings are different from our own.

      God has is far too big to be seen in individuals. We have to find ways of working together despite different perspectives and different callings so that others can gain a real picture of what God is like.

      At the end, they spoke of the ‘servant heart’ – of turning things upside down by serving people. Of being aware that we are all broken and thus find it extremely easy to mess things up. Might it be that drawing contrasts between the Gospel and dystopian society, could actually make the Gospel attractive enough for some people to find out more?

    3. Lana,

      You are missing the point… the gospel is for all to hear and, prayerfully, some to believe. In awareness of our culture and the ongoing trends, it should enable us to better communicate the gospel. A thing like this is a part of the culture that while it has redeeming perspectives also has topics that scripture speaks to that we need to know how to answer them. Paul at Athens comes to mind… Paul knew his society and culture and the popular topics of his day so was able to make a case for Christ. Many rejected his answer, but some realized he had something different and believed.

      While scripture should be sufficient, there is as well a context we must be aware of so we can speak truth in love in a way that relates to the pagan world we live in.

      I’m sure David will have a more robust answer to follow…

  2. I haven’t watched the series but the clip suggests this is just another view of society under extremist rule, but with a Christian twist.
    We have similar current examples in some Middle East countries.

    This would not happen in a democratic society based upon secular humanist values.

      1. Because Human beings will always screw it up

        If you believe this then why would you consider Christianity fares any better? After all, evidence clearly shows that it hasn’t got it right in over 2000 years.

    1. Ark,
      I’ve not watched it and don’t intend to either.

      Morality: Can Atheism deliver a better world?

      As far as basing society on the secular, here is something recent you need to watch as Mat Dillahunty get painted into a corner, is stumped when the moral bankruptcy of atheism is exposed, and even faith in a future which there is no evidence base for – just an airy- fairy, ” I don’t know” atheism , in a discussion with Christian and Australian Glenn Scrivener.
      MD does the usual ploy of changing the category: when he realises the water temperature has become too hot,and he has nowhere to go, he tries to jump out of the pot with a diversion.
      Here is a short extract:

      And a blog post, long form note about the whole talk:

      Here is one listener’s response:

      Last, is the full discussion:

      It seems that GS is filling some of David’s shoes with events at Dundee University.

      1. Morality: Can Atheism deliver a better world?

        Atheism is simply the lack of belief in gods. It has no moral agenda.
        There are atheists who are monsters, I’m sure, as there are atheists who are ”lambs”.

      2. You’re conflating atheism with atheists.

        Atheists can be moral and Atheists can be immoral, just as Christians.

        Atheism is the absence of belief in gods.
        That’s it.

      3. All human beings are moral. The question is the basis for that morality. Atheism is not just the absence of belief in gods – it is the philosophy and reason behind that absense of belief that is the question. (By the way as I have explained to you many times – no post of yours will get posted that complains about your posts not being posted – this is my personal blog and I am happy to let you comment – but not endlessly and there is no way I will post all your comments….!)

      4. Sorry, your definition is incorrect. Atheism is the absence of belief in gods. A-theism.
        Outside of this what individual atheists believe is another matter entirely.
        There are conservative atheists and liberal atheists. Atheists that support abortion and atheists who do not.
        Atheists who are for the death penalty and atheists who are against it.
        Atheists who eat meat and atheists, like me , who do not.

        I am open minded enough to state that I am perfectly willing to re-examine my lack of belief in gods if evidence is presented for their existence.
        If you believe you have evidence that will convince me then go ahead and present it.

      5. You think you are open minded…but you show no evidence of any kind of open mind. You won’t accept any evidence because quite simply you don’t believe that there can be any evidence. If that is not true please tell us what evidence you would accept?

      6. Again, I have not been presented with any evidence so how can I decide what would convince me?
        You are a devout believer so let’s start with the evidence that convinced you, David.
        That can’t be difficult at ll.
        Fire away …

      7. So you refuse to answer. The question is simple….what evidence would convince you? There’s so much! But my view is that there is no evidence that would convince you….so let us know what you would accept….

      8. Of curse I am not refusing to answer!

        The question is simple….what evidence would convince you?

        And my honest answer is: At this point I do not know.
        None of the claims I have read (to date) are convincing.

        You claim you were convinced by evidence and all I am asking is that you present it and maybe it will convince me.
        How difficult is that?

      9. SO again you refuse to answer….you demand evidence for God and then cannot say what evidence you would accept – thereby giving evidence for my belief that there is no evidence you would accept….

      10. I have answered. I said: at this point I don’t know.
        And I have not demanded anything, I merely asked you to tell me (present)the evidence that convinced you and perhaps it will convince me as well.
        So why do you refuse to tell me of the evidence that convinced you to become a Christian?

      11. Because its a waste of time. If you are unable to say what evidence you would accept, my assumption that you wouldn’t accept any, is correct….so why waste my time. If someone closes their eyes and then asks for evidence to be shown there is not much point…

      12. Nonsense! That is a fallacious assertion and you know it.
        Christians -including you- are forever announcing that, people are converting to Christianity all the time.
        To this end these people,like you, must surely have been convinced by evidence of the veracity of the claims.
        If not then they are shamming or have converted because of some form of indoctrination.

        So, if you are not prepared to divulge the details of the evidence that convinced you then without transgressing any privacy lines, you can at least discuss details of some of those you helped bring to Christ.
        That is if you are honest enough and sincere.
        After all, that is your profession/vocation, for goodness’ sake!

      13. Amazing – you are still unable to answer the most simple of questions – what evidence would you accept? The answer is of course – none – because such is your blindness and hardness that you would always explain it away. It’s like arguing with a conspiracy theorist. We are not talking about the evidence that convinced me or others – we are asking about what evidence you would accept. If you can’t answer that most basic of questions then there is no point in telling you the evidence that convinced us – only for you to mock and abuse. It would be casting pearls before swine….so answer the question and you will get the answer…

      14. I am unable to tell you what would convince me of the existence of your god because I have not been presented wth any evidence.
        The bible does not constitute as evidence for the existence of your god and therefore I do not find the claims for its veracity convincing.
        Let me offer an example from a fellow Christian. I have a chap who likes to visit my blog under the handle Godsmanforever. His real name is Bruce. A ful on born-again-Christian and former porn addict. So he told me. He is adamant that belief in Jesus/Yahweh does not rest with me but is the work of the Holy Spirit. He is adamant that I can do nothing unless I am singled out.
        Already you see a different perspective with regard evidence and belief and this is from a Christian!
        So according to him even details of what convinced you are meaningless in my ownpossible conversion.
        How does respond to Bruce on that score? How would you respond as a professional? He says he prays that the Holy Spirit intervenes. He is a persistent chap on that score I’ll give him that.
        I could say that watching an amputee’s limb regenerate while a Priest prayed over it.
        Now that would be truly amazing. Yet even such an example does not offer evidence of Yahweh.
        So you see the dilemma?

        This is why I ask what evidence convinced you, or perhaps your wife or son or someone you know personally. At least this would be something first hand we could discuss.

      15. You keep repeating yourself and thus you keep repeating my point. There is no point in you asking for evidence because you would automatically dismiss any such evidence. You have already pre-determined that no such evidence can exist. I’m not going to give you my evidence (I’ve already written about the in The Dawkins Letters and Magnificent Obsession – if you really want to read it)…because I don’see the point in talking to someone who is not listening – or asking someone to look at the evidence when they are determined to keep their eyes shut. Tell us what evidence would convince you and we will begin!

      16. Tell us what evidence would convince you and we will begin!

        If Jesus appeared in the post resurrection flesh as he is claimed to have done 2000 years ago in the bible and using language and tools we would understand demonstrate how he created the universe.

      17. If Jesus materialised in the flesh today/within my lifetime: In appearance to that which he was claimed to have looked post-resurrection and using language and tools I would understand, demonstrate how he created the universe.
        I will add that, a similar demonstration performed on a global scale would also help.

        After all, we are talking about ”God”, yes?

      18. If Jesus appeared in the flesh to you today – you would still not believe – you would be like the people in his own day. You have far too high an opinion of both your own cognitive abilities and your willingness to accept evidence.

      19. I watched it a couple of weeks ago.
        Where on earth did you see Dillahunty ”stumped”?

        Read the comments and see what most people who watched thought about Scrivner’s performance.

      1. Sorry but that’s no reply at all. Or, if it is a reply it is an admission that there is no universally accepted defintion of ‘secular human values’. As you say above, atheists have numerous contradictory beliefs so the ‘human values’ they hold can also be contradictory. Which means that ‘a democratic society based on secular human values’ is a figment of your imagination. There cannot be a society based on a set of values when there is no agreement what those values are.

      2. If a politician ran for office and his manifesto was based solely on his Christian worldview (Maybe he’s a Southern Baptist?) I am reasonably sure there would be certain Christians who would disagree with him.

        I imagine ti would be the same with secular humanists.
        If you want to know about the generally agreed upon secular humanist values then Google them.

  3. Arkenten,

    Could you clarify what you mean by ‘hasn’t got it right’ and could you provide some sources of your evidence?

      1. Do you mean that you are unable to? Or just unwilling to do so? Either way it is an interesting and very revealing response.

  4. Ark,
    You know what stumped means. This is a flaccid, feeble comment.
    MD had no answer or credible one to GS’s
    1 insistent in asking, Who is ,”we” that MD kept referring to. This was much to the annoyance of MD. And he didn’t take well to GS refusal to respond to the well known mockery.
    2 in relation to the killing of Downes Syndrome children in the womb. It was a tacit acceptance the they were excluded from the decision of the strong “we”. A poignant point was when MD couldn’t answer whether the “we” included all three of them taking part in the discussion!
    3 As stated above MD said “,I don’t know” when asked about a better atheist moral future, as there was no evidence to say it would be better- an honest, if blind faith answer.
    4 Come on Douglas, you are the one who has commented here, not others There is not one iota of substance to it..

    1. Yes I know what stumped means.

      in relation to the killing of Downes Syndrome children in the womb,It was a tacit acceptance the they were excluded from the decision of the strong “we”.

      Really? It didn’t come across like this to me.

      As stated above MD said “,I don’t know” when asked about a better atheist moral future, as there was no evidence to say it would be better- an honest, if blind faith answer.

      And he is correct. Atheism is simply the lack of belief in gods, a point he stressed on several occasions, which seemed to frustrate Scrivner. Yet Matt followed this by referring to a secular humanist ”future” or did you miss that bit?

      1. Ark/Douglas,
        The Future? A better moral atheist future?
        MD: “I don’t know”
        Why? There is no evidence on which to base knowledge, he said.
        You must have missed that as you seek solely to divert (from the parts you cite from me) by looking to define atheism (which did raise some discussion) rather than deal with the substance, the main point, which is where it leads, morally.
        Again your comments do not deal with the substance, have substance.
        It is hollowed out atheist humanity based on a blind leap of faith into the dark (as no atheist light can be shone into it) unknown, by the unknowing.
        It is a movement from Rebellion to Extinction!
        You are unable to follow the arguments, or when self-painted into a corner deliberately divert to attempt fudge the main points as do your idols, MD and atheism, as they are found to have feet of clay, even as your mind is set in concrete beliefs and unmoveable.
        I’m ending this.
        Anyone who is really interested can make up their own minds by spending some time by following the links above, which David kindly permitted, and make up their own minds on the matters raised, rather than on our comments.
        What there is evidence for is that you can’t keep away from Christianity and Christians, as you watch, listen to Premier, not to really learn but learn in one direction only – to oppose Christianity.
        No doubt all of the substance of historian Tom Holland’s arguments with Greyling will have been completely discounted by you as well.

  5. Geoff.
    I already said i watched the entire video a few weeks ago.
    Where Dillahunty did not know something he was honest to state this. Such as the future, but suggested that secular humanism was a better option.
    He even explained this by demonstrating he could write a better bible simply by removing all the references to slavery and even asked Scrivener what his god could not have included a commandment about not owning another human being, to which Scrivener babbled on and on without giving a definite answer.
    Scrivener was even worse when asked for an explanation regarding the Trinity. He was almost derailed at that point and the host had to save his bacon.
    Matt openly stated what he thought regarding atheism and corrected Scrivener when he tried to lead the discussion and force Dillahunty into a gotcha situation. I am surprised he remained as calm as he did in the face of such illogical argumentative nonsense from Scrivener.

    Dillahunty was not disingenuous and neither was he evasive, and he would not allow Scrivener to use presuppositional nonsense – his god exists – which was the basis of Scriveners argument.
    Dillahunty mentioned on at least two occasions he thought there was nothing wrong with taking the best parts of the bible and disregard the stuff that did not contribute to the overall well
    being of people. And he was cautious about the term well being as well and explained how this would be agreed upon.
    Scrivener made a complete arse of himself when he foolishly brought Hitler into the discussion – and said we should be fighting a war. I am not going to watch the video again to get his exact wording, but Dillahunty was incredulous and pulled him up and then Scrivener blathered on some more trying to save face.he

    Anyone who is really interested can make up their own minds by spending some time by following the links above,/blockquote>

    They did. Read the comments on the full version on Youtube,
    Most people thought very little of your apologist.

    1. Really poor effort Douglas, of even handedly reflecting the lengthy discussion, Douglas.
      I too watched it all.
      A far more reasonable an accurate note take, like well written lecture notes, is the Premier blog I linked above.
      And the key point, bearing in mind the subject matter of the topic,which wasn’t the existence of our Triune God, was the one GS emphasised in the abstracted clip, I linked above along with humanity created in the image of God, who became weak, took on flesh.
      Your summary of what was discussed about Hitler and War is very poor. GS touched upon Atlee, Just Wars ( a concept which seemed to by- pass MD) and a number of times asked if MD who gather together a symposium, and who would be included, to discuss with an intractable Hitler.
      Not balanced at all from you.
      You must try harder, but if that is your best even handed effort, I dispair of the future being in your atheist hands.
      But it isn’t, for every knee will bow, every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.
      This is a long goodbye, but goodbye.

  6. Arkenten,

    “If you want to know about the generally agreed upon secular humanist values then Google them.”

    ‘Generally agreed’? By what method was this ‘generally agreed’ conclusion reached? Was a poll conducted among self-proclaimed ‘secular humanists’?
    I suspect that this is an example of a circular argument. It’s probably the case that a ’secular humanist’ is defined as somebody who has certain beliefs. So, obviously, on that basis these people are going to have certain beliefs in common. And anybody who doesn’t share those beliefs is not regarded as a ‘secular humanist’.
    Which, no doubt, nicely excludes the ‘enlightened’ atheists who, during the French Revolution, delighted in sending thousands of people to the guillotine.
    And, no doubt it nicely excludes the atheists in Spain and Mexico who delighted in murdering thousands of nuns and priests.

    1. Exactly Mike,
      This was the point GS kept emphasizing, when asking, who is the “we” MD repeated talked about.
      It’s worth a watch, if long, with a longish getting to know you intro.
      The blog long form note published by Premier, linked above is an accurate, lecture- type note taking.
      There was some mention by GS of John Grey’s. 7 types of atheism, war , and Hitler, and a Just War by GS which wasn’t developed, neither was the Trinity.
      The. Key point GS honed in on, was the one that is unique to Christian, God becoming weak, taking on flesh, the point well abstracted in the short clip in my first link.

    2. Here’s the list from
      There are more but not to overwhelm the post I’ve included half a dozen or so. YOu can click on the link and read the rest.

      1.We are committed to the application of reason and science to the understanding of the universe and to the solving of human problems.
      2.We deplore efforts to denigrate human intelligence, to seek to explain the world in supernatural terms, and to look outside nature for salvation.
      3.We believe that scientific discovery and technology can contribute to the betterment of human life.
      4.We believe in an open and pluralistic society and that democracy is the best guarantee of protecting human rights from authoritarian elites and repressive majorities.
      5.We are committed to the principle of the separation of church and state.
      6.We cultivate the arts of negotiation and compromise as a means of resolving differences and achieving mutual understanding.
      7.We are concerned with securing justice and fairness in society and with eliminating discrimination and intolerance.
      8.We believe in supporting the disadvantaged and the handicapped so that they will be able to help themselves.
      9.We respect the right to privacy. Mature adults should be allowed to fulfill their aspirations, to express their sexual preferences, to exercise reproductive freedom, to have access to comprehensive and informed health-care, and to die with dignity.
      10. We affirm humanism as a realistic alternative to theologies of despair and ideologies of violence and as a source of rich personal significance and genuine satisfaction in the service to others.
      11.We believe in optimism rather than pessimism, hope rather than despair, learning in the place of dogma, truth instead of ignorance, joy rather than guilt or sin, tolerance in the place of fear, love instead of hatred, compassion over selfishness, beauty instead of ugliness, and reason rather than blind faith or irrationality.

      1. Who is the “We”?
        More evidence, that you just don’t get it Douglas. Ta! More blind faith atheism.

  7. Hello again WeeFlee.

    Bear with me a minute on this/these temporarily indirect, but relevant question(s).

    What Christian seminary did you graduate from… OR what Christian seminaries do YOU approve, support, and promote as worthy educators of Jesus Christ’s TRUE teachings and salvation?

    Please feel free to give examples of seminaries that YOU believe are the antithesis of Christ’s TRUE teachings.

    Thank you for your prompt, fully honest answer.

      1. Is that where you received your theological education and perhaps a theological or divinity degree?

        Please feel free to divulge any and all relevant post-grad education or degree from a seminary, including Edinburgh Theological Seminary if that is where you attained your religious degree. Your above answer is vague as to whether you attained a post-grad from there. Also, you didn’t mention other seminaries that you’d recommend or any you would not recommend, as a Robertson bearing, idea, or standard you have for “TRUE Christian” ministry, missions, education, church-leadership, etc. Thanks.

    1. Hello Prof Taboo,

      I’m afraid your point is not clear to me, but it seems that you are questioning how we know something to be the true teaching of Christianity.

      That is simple, in principle. The truth of Christianity is not defined by what Christian leaders or seminaries or etc. declare to be the case. The truth of Christianity is defined by what is in the Bible. When my dad was in Bible college around 1950, the college had a number of rules that the students had to abide by, but told the students that if they could show that any of their rules were contrary to what the Bible teaches, the Bible took precedence. What they were doing was expressing the principle that the Bible was the ultimate authority, not their college rules.

      Christians and seminaries might have different views (in some cases) about what the Bible teaches, but the Bible remains the standard, the only issue being to resolving differences about what people think it means.

      But humans being human, they sometimes stuff it up, and their prejudices and selfish agendas get in the way. And they often compromise with what the world teaches. So to answer your question about which seminaries are good educators of Christ’s teaching, it’s those that teach what the Bible says without compromising with the world.

      That is not a list of course. That is a principle by which they can be judged.

      1. For Robertson (again) and Philip —

        Well, since everybody EXCEPT WeeFlee wants to comment-answer and your, Philip Rayment and Geoff’s, responses are not on the topic I had intended based on Robertson’s answers, then I am just moving forward since Robertson seems to have suddenly gone deaf/blind, maybe? 😄

        The truth of Christianity is defined by what is in the Bible.

        Insufficient Philip. Which “New Testament” are your referring to? The traditional 4th-century CE Canonical, Greek New Testament? Or one of at least three 2nd-century CE circulating gospels of Yeshua/Jesus? One of two 3rd-century CE gospels? Anyway, I had no intention of tackling this gross Christian misnomer (ignorance?) again with WeeFlee or any other Christian here. Thus, I specifically directed my initial question(s) to WeeFlee only. Therefore…

        Mr. Robertson, you’ve had sufficient time to be much more specific and elaborate on what YOU’D consider to be sketchy or heretical teachings of Christ at thousands of other (true) Christian seminaries. This is a very valid, reasonable question in order for your elementary blog-readers to better know more precisely/truthfully YOUR particular angle on Jesus/Yeshua and one of the Canonical Gospels. Your silence I will go ahead and reasonably assume that your initial vague reply that you attained a Master’s or PhD(?) in Theology/Divinity from “Edinburgh Theological Seminary“? Is that right? I wanted 100% confirmation on that. Why be cautious or afraid to boldly state that and elaborate? Meanwhile, by YOUR doing/choice this has all been a needless waste of time. Why avoid such a simple question(s) and request for elaboration? It sends the wrong message to non-Christians.

        Therefore, based upon “Edinburgh Theological Seminary’s website” YOU adhere to or would not argue against their theological statement and foundations:

        The doctrinal standard of Edinburgh Theological Seminary is the Westminster Confession of Faith.

        This sets the Seminary firmly in the main-line Christian tradition, particularly with regard to such doctrines as the Trinity and the Incarnation.

        More specifically, the theological position of Edinburgh Theological Seminary is:

        • Protestant
        • Presbyterian
        • Calvinist
        • Conservative
        • Evangelical

        However, the Seminary consciously provides a clear welcome to students who may hold different views on and come from other traditions.

        It is that very last statement WeeFlee, their Release of Liability Clause so to speak, that I asked you my initial question for more clarity, of which you did not provide. Thus anticipating your possible vagueness, another reason I asked was because your (assumed?) theological seminary education falls perfectly in line with MY American seminary: Reformed Theological Seminary in Clinton, MS near Jackson. However, I would rather like to nail-down our near identical, or sibling theological education (or not) that we both share before I post my next evaluation of one of your earlier comments on here.

        It would be appreciated Mr. Robertson if you were MORE forthright in your answers and VERY WILLING to freely expound on your answers for the sake of precision and less (or no?) misunderstandings of YOUR specific viewpoint about Yeshua bar Yosef’s life, teachings, and execution by the Roman Empire.


        P.S. Ugh, this honestly did NOT need to be made THIS difficult if you had just fully comprehended and answered fully my first question(s) Sir! Geezzz. 🙄

      2. I’m sorry but I really have no desire at all to engage with you. You ask a leading question – not for the purpose of eliciting information but just you let you have one of your self-righteous rants – so forgive me for not engaging. The answer to your question was simple – and I gave it. I attended the Free Church College and the University of Edinburgh. I have no interest whatsoever in giving you a list of seminaries I consider to be heretical – why would I waste my time? As for sending a ‘wrong message to non-Christians’ what arrogance! What makes you think that any such have any interest in your hamfisted attempt at interrogation?! So, if you don’t mind – leave me alone and let me get on with my life – I have absolutely no interest in engaging with some anonymous, smug, keyboard warrior who thinks he is a cut above everyone else and drowns us all in a sea of pomposity.

      3. Insufficient Philip. Which “New Testament” are your referring to?

        I’m referring to the (whole) Bible as inspired by God. Part of resolving differences is resolving what the correct reading of the text is, which is why an enormous amount of research and study has gone into that.

        The principle, however, stands. The Bible, not our various (mis)understandings, is the criterion.
        If we can show that a particular group or organisation is teaching contrary to the Bible, then they are wrong in that teaching. If the different teaching is due to a different textual variant, then part of showing that they are wrong is to show that the textual variant is wrong.

        Sometimes different groups do disagree on things, such as eschatology, but they are disagreeing on things that can legitimately be understood in different ways, whilst still making the biblical teaching the benchmark.

      4. No, that is not entirely correct Philip. However, I am unable to get into it now, or over the next several days, the immense volumes of why that is not correct about the/your 4th-century CE Canonical Greek New Testament. The provenance and textual-criticisms alone are a subject much too involved to tackle here with you! Apologies. Hence, my wish for a strict closed dialogue with WeeFlee Robertson. Our time, my time is just too valuable to tackle this with you.

        However, all this information, facts, evidence, source-evidence, plausible probabilities, etc, etc, are easily accessible for anyone out there to dive in and find the real truth, the comprehensive independently verified contextual history of the Late Second Temple period, i.e. the window just before, during, and after Jesus’/Yeshua’s lifetime, AND grasping fully Yeshua’s/Jesus’ Sectarian Jewishness. Most Christians today have no clue about his full background/context that was his foundation for his hopeful Reforms! Christians today just have to choose to NOT to be so lazy to completely understand their supposed Savior. 🙂

        Take care Philip

      5. Philip is correct – but you will forgive me if I ask you not to persist in your campaign and self=promotion. You of course know ‘the real truth’ in which you want to enlighten us. Those who don’t agree with you are of course to ‘lazy to completely understand their supposed Saviour’. Whereas you of course do. As I said I don’t appreciate you coming on here supposedly to ask questions – but in reality to try and get a platform for whatever heresy you are about to propound. You say your time is too valuable. So is mine…GO and try elsewhere.

    1. Thanks Geoff.

      Though your comment is like WeeFlee’s—very vague/general—I’m afraid your suggestion is understandably way off the mark. I have already done and still continue to do large amounts of study and research. This factual information is readily available for anyone to read on my WordPress blog’s About page and subsequent pages. Hence, to courteously respond to your vague input, I have indeed already completed researching, studying, and fully grasping the “Good News” as you put it and done so quite extensively over two decades and also through ministry and missions work on multiple continents.

      Also, to state the obvious but with respect, my question was directed specifically to Mr. Robertson. He will be the only person to truthfully answer my question(s). Thank you.

      1. Hello Prof,
        Maybe you should spend some time reading your own blog, “Why Christianity always fails” and stop using this as a thinly veiled notice board or signpost to your own site with your loaded interjected, questions with an apparent intention to draw in.
        Poor stuff really, I venture.
        As you are aware, this is not a forum or facility for systematic or biblical theology on which numerous books have been written, again as you are aware.
        You will also be aware that David Robertson has books published, which you could read, even though I’m not his spokesperson or press secretary.
        Every blessing in Christ Jesus,

      2. Geoff, I’ll indulge you very briefly and politely this one last time.

        First, thank you for taking a few minutes to skim my blog. However, you completely missed the overall purpose of my blog clearly shown throughout, but specifically on the About page and other pages listed on the Menu. No worries, I forgive you. 😉

        Second, not to state the obvious again, but my initial comment-question was specifically for WeeFlee since his blog does not specify his academic-educational background, particularly the institution(s) attended, so I was curious to know. Not only to know the religious slant of his (assumed?) theological or divinical degree’d institution, but also to get an idea of what HE would NOT condone, advocate, teach, or promote to readers and the world regarding “Christ™.” That information is not easily available on his/this blog or at all. Hence, I asked and suggested he might freely elaborate on his answer. Very simple, right?

        To be frank and courteous to you Geoff, there’s no need for you and I to spar without even knowing what it was I was going to ask further of WeeFlee and the direction of those following questions and comments. Therefore, our engagement—especially based on your opening comment’s tone to me—does not interest me. I doubt our discussion would be productive.
        You are however welcome to answer the following. Implicitly read into its/my meaning as to the purpose of what I asked Robertson in my initial question. This is important to Christians™ …

        Geoff, how do you interpret and obtain an exegetical summary of 1 Corinthians 3:1-4 and Hebrews 5:11-14 and connect the dots or purpose and relevance of my INITIAL, simple question to WeeFlee. In your reply please stay strictly on-topic with these two passages.

        Geoff, you certainly do not have to write-up your answer-comment to this. I don’t care one way or the other. If you do answer and WeeFlee allows it thru his tight Moderation protocol, I still won’t reply. By asking it explains why I ask Christians this question all the time. And so I simply ask for a straight and expounded reply from WeeFlee to my initial question(s) to him, not you.

        Take care Geoff

  8. It took a while for you to reveal your motives, though your open questions, were merely leading to leading questions. As a former lawyer I can often identify direction of travel.
    A clue may be in your somewhat preposterous nomenclature combined with your opening gambit, question with more than a hint of, justify yourself.
    With a motive and intention to what?
    It is David Robertson’s blog after all.
    Now your question to me is interesting and as I don’t know the scriptures by rote, and I’m not at home, but on my phone I ‘ll dig into it later for my own edification, though you’re not interest in a reply as you’ve already made your mind up on a question you ask Christians all the time.
    Every blessing in Christ Jesus,

  9. If Jesus appeared in the flesh to you today – you would still not believe

    Even after acceding to your request and providing what I considered to be a well thought out answer regarding evidence for Jesus being your god you continue to dismiss and delete every reply I make.
    So perhaps after all this would be a good time to tell me what evidence convinced you and suggest if this would be the type of evidence you think would convince me also?

    1. A well thought out answer? You gave an answer which made no sense. Were you saying that if Jesus appeared to you personally you would believe in God. That makes about as much sense as saying you won’t believe that Hitler existed unless you have a personal appearance from him! Besides which Jesus appeared to many people who did not believe in him.

      1. Hello Prof, PT,
        I’d identify,off the top of my head,basics without detailed study a number of topics from the scriptures you cite, on which, many books have been written and include, in no particular order.
        (v merely implies a comparison, a consideration of, not opposition)
        1 indicatives v imperatives
        2 justification v sanctification
        3 birth(new), babe v maturity
        4 visible church (mixture of belief & unbelief) v invisible church
        5 teaching
        5.1 basic
        5.1.1 The Irreducible, indicative there is NO foundation other than Jesus Christ – Cor 3 :11 and
        5.1.2 remember indicatives of verses 16 & 23

        “16 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple.

        23 and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God.”)

        5.2 teaching depth -extent of Christian life -Union with Christ.

        6 Differences between is and ought, between who and what you are and how you are, transforming changed life belief v as you were.
        7 first order matters v secondary
        8orthodox v heterodox/heresy
        9 life transforming teaching v life lived
        9 christian academic qualifications eg reformed without being unformed!
        10 range/scope across context of and in Corinthians, Hebrews and rest of NT Gospels, Romans (in particular 7 &8)

        Yours in Christ Jesus
        Geoff -every Christian- BA (Hons): Born Again and Honoured

    2. Ark, the point in asking what sort of evidence you would accept is two-fold:
      * It would be a waste of time providing evidence that you would simply dismiss because you don’t consider it to be acceptable. I have on a number of occasions been asked for evidence for something, and I’ve provided the evidence, only to have it dismissed because it didn’t meet another, unstated, requirement (i.e. the questioner moved the goalposts). When I have asked the questioner to be very specific, he typically refuses. On one occasion when one did get specific, I provided the requested information (which showed his view to be wrong), and being unable to move the goalposts, he simply ignored the answer and didn’t talk to me any more.
      * To determine whether or not you are consistent. This is the basis of David’s response to you about Hitler. It seems (as is so often the case with atheists) that you expect evidence of a type or level that you would not request in almost any other case, showing that you have a double standard and therefore are not really interested in being convinced.

      I would add that many sceptics have said that if such-and-such is the case, I would believe, only for them to not believe when it was shown that it was the case.

      1. My initial response, as you can read up thread, was that at this point I did not know what evidence would convince me.
        I will add for clarity and honesty that this would in no way mean I would worship this individual or confess to being a ”sinner” or any other such Christian dogmatic nonsense; only that I would likely acknowledge his claim as creator of the universe.
        Furthermore, you can bet your bottom dollar there would be a lot of questions to follow!

        Because David was not satisfied with my initial answer I asked repeatedly what evidence convinced him, to which he has steadfastly refused to give details, other than insisting I buy his book/s .

        When I finally offered what I thought would be an example of the evidence that would convince me of the bona fides of the character Jesus, David merely dismissed my response in his usual condescending style.
        This game is one so may apologists like to play and is a case of damned if you do, damned if you don’t.
        It is all the more frustrating when dealing with a blogger who invites dialogue and then moderates to hell.

      2. Ark, I second all of this you’ve stated about “convincing evidence” and the incredible difficulty you, myself, and any other non-Christians or people who are simply different than WeeFlee have trying to dialogue about a subject that should NEVER be taken personally, but only based upon the historiology, evidence, facts, contextual contemporaneous sources, especially the INDEPENDENT unbiased sources, plausible probabilities with limit facts/evidence, or “Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence” or argument from ignorance, etc,… being dismissed, never answering FULLY questions posed… it does indeed show a type of police-state that wants to control ALL and everyone’s freedom of expression. Censorship and/or heavy Moderation is not conducive to fully open, flowing, free expression and dialogue is it?

        Oh, and your arrogance Ark is outstanding and should be placed in the pantheon of arrogant gods and goddesses Sir! 😄

      3. @Prof.
        The irony of course is the fact that, Christians are commanded to witness to the non-believer or adherents of other faiths yet when asked to do so they balk at the first hurdle – evidence.

        It is natural and expected that the non believer will show extreme doubt at the continual assertion that one must have faith or one can only come to Christ via the intervention of the Holy Spirit, a near impossible task for those brought up to exercise critical thought.
        This does not even take into account the tacit threat of eternal damnation for those who do not convert or accept this ”Word”.

        The point is even more pertinent in today’s technological environment where access to information is available 24/7, and especially when the internet is full of testimonials from religious deconverts explaining that the basis of their belief was largely due to cultural or emotional influences and had nothing to to do with evidence.
        That there is an organisation called The Clergy Project, set up specifically for professional members of the clergy who have lost faith and have deconverted or are hiding their lack of belief tells its own story.

      4. Ark, I don’t think that your reply to me really answered what I wrote, so in many ways this response is simply an elaboration of my last response.

        “My initial response, as you can read up thread, was that at this point I did not know what evidence would convince me.”
        On one level I can understand that. If I was a jury member in a court case, I would want to be open to whatever evidence there is available and wouldn’t want to predetermine what evidence it would take to convince me of the guilt or innocence of the defendant.

        However, I would already know that the evidence should be eyewitness testimony, a video or audio recording of the crime, forensic evidence, and so on, but not the opinion of someone who wasn’t there, someone who heard from their sister who heard from her best friend who heard from their neighbour that the defendant did it, etc. If a juror said, for example, that the only evidence he would accept is being taken back to the crime in a time machine, he’d be laughed off the jury (if not first dismissed by the judge), for wanting such an impossible level of proof before he’s convinced.

        Of course a court already has rules about what sorts of evidence are acceptable and what aren’t, whereas there are no rules about what sorts of evidence an atheist would find acceptable. Hence David’s question. Now, perhaps you want to quibble about the fact that he asked what “evidence” rather than what “types of evidence”, but I think that should have been understandable.
        Your belated suggestion that you would accept Jesus appearing to you in the flesh today is the same type of answer as the juror who would only accept using a time machine to view the crime—if it weren’t for that being impossible, it would be an unrealistically high expectation, and would show that you’re not being reasonable.

        (I don’t know if that comment surprised you, that Jesus appearing in the flesh would be impossible, but if it does then it shows that you have the level of understanding of a child or an immature Christian. Yes, there are things that God (and therefore Jesus) cannot do. God cannot lie. God cannot contradict Himself. God cannot go against His own nature. God cannot create a square circle, because there is no such thing as a square circle—God is not restricted by a lack of power or lack of knowledge (he is omnipotent and omniscient), but cannot do the logically impossible because it is His nature to be logical.

        Jesus told us that we would not see Him again until He returned to bring an end to this age. So appearing in the flesh to you prior to that time would be contrary to what God has said, so is not possible.)

        But the other issue is whether you would actually accept such an appearance anyway. Some atheists have admitted that even if the stars aligned to spell out something like “I am the Creator”, they would still not believe, and of course they could always explain it away as a hallucination, mass delusion, or whatever.

        I’ve seen this sort of thing numerous times. Darwin said that perhaps the strongest argument against evolution is the lack of the “finely graduated organic chain” that evolution would predict, but excused that lack of evidence on the grounds of the imperfection of the fossil record. Since then, a lot more fossils have been found, but still no finely graduated organic chain. But evolution is still believed. J. B. S. Haldane said that evolution could never produce magnets and wheels. Both have been found in living things, but people were still not convinced. Evolutionists are fond of saying that evolution could be disproved by finding rabbits in the Precambrian (and they clearly don’t mean that rabbits would be a problem, but not hares, so what they are obviously talking about is a fossil of a creature that is well outside the range expected by evolution). But would they really? If they did, would it be acknowledged as a rabbit? Would the rock be reclassified to not be Precambrian, because it had rabbits in it (often rocks are dated by what fossils they contain)? There are always ways to get around the evidence if you really want to. And fossil pollen has been found in the Precambrian, so evolutionists simply ignore that evidence.

        Would you actually believe if Jesus did appear in the flesh? I don’t know, but I have reason to doubt you, and of course as David and I both indicated previously, like the juror and the time machine, that’s a (ridiculously) higher standard than we expect you would require for almost anyone else, such as Hitler.

      5. @Phillip

        Jesus told us that we would not see Him again until He returned to bring an end to this age. So appearing in the flesh to you prior to that time would be contrary to what God has said, so is not possible.)

        He is also claimed to have said: For verily I say unto you, Till. heaven and earth pass, one jot or one. tittle shall in no wise pass from. the law, till all be fulfilled

        And that turned out not to be the case.
        Furthermore, an omnipotent deity can change his mind and who are we to cast aspersions or judge, correct? Or at least this is what I have been told by several Christians.
        Therefore omnipotence – if this is what Jesus/Yahweh is is still in play and an omnipotent deity has the power to do whatever it likes.

        Ergo my comment regarding what evidence would convince me stands.-
        To refresh: (and , David, as you will read this please, for once allow it through)
        You will note Phillip that an appearance in the flesh is not the sole condition of what I would consider adequate evidence.

        If Jesus materialised in the flesh today/within my lifetime: In appearance to that which he was claimed to have looked post-resurrection and using language and tools I would understand, demonstrate how he created the universe.
        I will add that, a similar demonstration performed on a global scale would also help.

    1. Ark your arrogance is in this from you:
      “that this would in no way mean I would worship this individual or confess to being a ”sinner” or any other such Christian dogmatic nonsense; only that I would likely acknowledge his claim as creator of the universe.
      Furthermore, you can bet your bottom dollar there would be a lot of questions to follow!”
      It reveals amongst others :
      1 a lack of biblical knowledge and understanding, though you claim to read it
      2 even a lack of a smidgen of imagination of the immensity of a God who was able to create the universe(s) ex nihilo, who is saviour, judge, And Abba, Father. and more.
      3 A superiority to God (so your self named Pharaoh is highly pertinent) with nota prideful no iota of understand of what is. (There is a clue here!)

      You not half whinge, for someone who knows something of eternity- you go on and on and on and on, with avoidance issues, who won’t/can’t answer hard question.
      If you don’t like the rules, unless they are yours, you don’t have to play the game of your own making.

      1. @ Geoff

        1. Lack pf biblical knowledge? In what way? I always understood from Christians it was solely interpretation.
        Furthermore, I’d venture that my knowledge of the tales in the bible is pretty good.
        Or are you referring to something else?

        2. This makes no sense. The idea of a saviour is based on Christian dogma/doctrine.

        3. Again, in what way do I assert superiority?

        You’ll have to be a little more specific in your accusations. And if you have a ”hard question” you feel I am avoiding then spit it out, Geoff.

      2. “I always understood from Christians it was solely interpretation.”
        I don’t know what sort of Christians you have been talking to, and perhaps I misunderstand what you are getting at, but, I for one would never say that. On the contrary, I have said things like “I don’t interpret the Bible, I just accept what it’s saying”. If the Bible says that God told Abraham something, I just accept that God told Abraham something, I don’t “interpret” it to mean something else.
        Now that doesn’t mean that there are not passages that are difficult to understand, or perhaps a bit ambiguous, but for me, it’s definitely not “solely” interpretation.

      3. Really? Then why in your view are there so many different sects of Christianity?
        Why have there been so many wars over what is the correct understanding of the bible?
        Why are there Old Age Creationists and YEC?

        Why do some accept that there were around 2 million people in the Exodus while others consider the numbers a lot less, while others consider the tale a myth?

        Every example is one of interpretation and each interpretation has its adherents.

      4. “Really? Then why in your view are there so many different sects of Christianity?”
        “Sects” is not really an appropriate term, but I won’t take that further here.

        How many are there? The oft-touted figure of 40,000 or whatever is bogus. That refers to organisations, not different beliefs. So the Victorian Baptists are one, the New South Wales Baptists are another, the Australian Catholic church is another, the New Zealand Catholic church is another again, and so on.

        But yes, there are still a number of different denominations. However, some of those differences are non-theological, such as different types of church government. Some have a top-down structure, while others have more of a bottom-up structure, for example. Again, not a difference due to different understandings of the Bible.

        Baptists require one to be baptised by full immersion to be a member, but do not say that you have to be so baptised to be a Christian, and will happily accept members of other denominations as Christians. I am currently a member of a Baptist church, but I’ve been involved with an independent church, a Wesleyan-Methodist church, and a Church of Christ. So yes, there are differences, but in many cases they are relatively trivial.

        “Why have there been so many wars over what is the correct understanding of the bible?”
        I don’t accept the premises that there have been wars as such, many of them at least, and necessarily over the correct understanding of the Bible. There have certainly been some disagreements, but over various matters. For example, some Christians were burnt at the stake or similar for translating the Bible into the vernacular, not because of a different understanding of a particular biblical text, but because the church establishment wanted to control the message.

        “Why are there Old Age Creationists and YEC?”
        Simply because some Christians have compromised with the world on this (and others who have followed those without really investigating. For example, Wheaton College lecturer Pattle Pun said (emphasis added): “It is apparent that the most straightforward understanding of Genesis, without regard to the hermeneutical considerations suggested by science, is that God created the heavens and the earth in six solar days, that man was created on the sixth day, and that death and chaos entered the world after the fall of Adam and Eve, and that all fossils were the result of the catastrophic deluge that spared only Noah’s family and the animals therewith.”
        Note that his reason for being an old age creationists is not due to his reading of the Bible, but due to taking on board the so-called science (which is actually based on naturalism). I could quote others saying similar, but I don’t know of any who make a good argument for getting that from the Bible.
        Further, essentially no Christian ever made the case for an Earth much older than about 6000 years prior to the secular view of an old Earth being promoted, which shows that the idea didn’t come from the Bible.

        “Why do some accept that there were around 2 million people in the Exodus while others consider the numbers a lot less, while others consider the tale a myth?”
        In the last case at least, because like the OECs, some have compromised with the secular view. In the second case, I don’t know what there reasons are, but neither have you shown that it’s due to an ambiguous reading of the Bible.

        “Every example is one of interpretation and each interpretation has its adherents.”
        You haven’t shown that. It could very well be that one understanding in each case is based on what the Bible says, and another understanding is based on something outside the Bible, as in the YEC vs. OEC case.

  10. Correction to my comment to Prof PT of 22 Feb 5:35

    Second number 9 (yes, I know) should read …reformed without being formed!

  11. Wouldn’t you know it (and I did, as do others) there is a much lauded, revered by atheist, site, dedicated to scripture and its relevant, up to date application, that is Jesus prophetic, parable of the sower.
    And wouldn’t you know it, there is much evidence, even on here, that the nature of atheists is to worship…self,; genuflecting to self and to each other with a finite, closed material world omniscience, omnipotence and technological omnipresence worship.

  12. You’re buying Douglas: Lagavulin, please. It’s years since I had one. If that’s too much of a stretch Aldi’s Highland malt is good too.

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