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God’s Plan, Our Future: Making Sense of the World Dr. William E. Brown.

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Presentation on theme: "God’s Plan, Our Future: Making Sense of the World Dr. William E. Brown."— Presentation transcript:

1 God’s Plan, Our Future: Making Sense of the World Dr. William E. Brown

2 1. The Christian Worldview is challenged everyday.

3 Around the office, whenever I see a Christian, I scream and run away like a little girl... I am more afraid of Christians than I am of getting a flesh eating virus.... I am more afraid of Christians than I am of being shipped to Syria and tortured. Al Franken

4 “Yes, we are a nation that is unenlightened because of religion. I do believe that. I think that religion stops people from thinking. I think it justifies crazies. I think flying planes into a building was a faith-based initiative. I think religion is a neurological disorder.” Bill Maher Religion is the problem

5 “The beauty of religious mania is that it has the power to explain everything. Once God (or Satan) is accepted as the first cause of everything which happens in the mortal world, nothing is left to chance… logic can be happily tossed out the window.” “The beauty of religious mania is that it has the power to explain everything. Once God (or Satan) is accepted as the first cause of everything which happens in the mortal world, nothing is left to chance… logic can be happily tossed out the window.” Stephen King

6 2. The default religious view is that I must choose my own beliefs according to what is best for me.

7 “I had a crisis of faith. I thought you had to experience things if you want to know right from wrong. I’d go to Christian revivals and be moved by the Holy Spirit and I’d go to rock concerts and feel the same fervor. The I’d be told, ‘That’s the Devil’s music! Don’t partake in that!’ I wanted to experience things religion said not to experience... When I got untethered from the comfort of religion, it wasn’t a loss of faith for me, it was a discovery of self. I had faith that I’m capable enough to handle any situation “I had a crisis of faith. I thought you had to experience things if you want to know right from wrong. I’d go to Christian revivals and be moved by the Holy Spirit and I’d go to rock concerts and feel the same fervor. The I’d be told, ‘That’s the Devil’s music! Don’t partake in that!’ I wanted to experience things religion said not to experience... When I got untethered from the comfort of religion, it wasn’t a loss of faith for me, it was a discovery of self. I had faith that I’m capable enough to handle any situation.” Brad Pitt It’s all about me....

8 There are no rules. Just follow your heart. -Robin Williams It’s all about me....

9 "If I was having a bad day, or if something was really getting me down -boy troubles, whatever- I wanted to go out and get a new piercing. It was definitely a release for me. Something that made me feel a little more strong or empowered. Because it was something that had to do with me and no one else." was really getting me down -boy troubles, whatever- I wanted to go out and get a new piercing. It was definitely a release for me. Something that made me feel a little more strong or empowered. Because it was something that had to do with me and no one else." Christina Aguilera Rolling Stone It’s all about me....

10 I am a blank slate— therefore I can create anything I want. -Tobey Maguire It’s all about me.... I don't necessarily believe in organized religion. I love my God, my higher power, but it is mine and mine alone, and I create my connection, and I decide how my connection is going to be. -Will Smith

11 You know when I feel inwardly beautiful? When I am with my girlfriends and we are having a "goddess circle." -Jennifer Aniston It’s all about me....

12 “Sometimes I feel like I’m living a meaningless life and I get frightened... I have no idea where this insecurity comes from, but it’s a God-sized hole. If I knew, I’d fill it and I’d be on my way... I have no answers to anything. None. Why am I an alcoholic? I haven’t a clue! What is life about? I don’t know.... The best I can do is learn from my mistakes and move forward. And that’s what I’m trying to do.” ~Shia LeBeouf

13 I don't believe in God now...I can still work up an envy for someone who has faith. I can see how that could be a deeply soothing experience. -Jack Nicholson It’s all about me....

14 3. Christians are called to be thinkers and givers – minds of depth & lives of grace.

15 1.Think Worldviewishly

16 Houston, TX Dear residents of Dayton, Tenn., I read about your town in the September National Geographic. It seems as though everybody there believes in Jesus and Christianity. As a humanist, I see NO evidence of a god, heaven, hell, devils, angels, fairies or a soul that leaves the body. The story of Adam and Eve is a fairy tale. Noah’s Ark is an impossible dream. The “virgin birth” of Jesus by mother Mary is nonsense. The hundreds of religions around the world all believe they have the answer. Religions are nothing but people’s imagination. Men wrote the Bible, not an imaginary god. Humanists believe in nature and science. We know that people and animals and plants evolved over three billion years on planet Earth.

17 We do not look for supernatural answers as to why we have thunder or why it rains or why we have tornados. This is all part of nature and physics. We’re proud of being capable of determining right from wrong by using our brains and not some book translated from ancient Holy scrolls. We do not thank Jesus for good fortune because our intelligence knows he has NOTHING to do with anything going on now. Best regards, Jimmy Dunne President, Humanists of Houston

18 Dear Mr. Dunne: I was disappointed in your letter of August 28 to the people of Dayton. I do not think it accomplished what you intended. Your letter was more of a screed than a creed. People who read it either laughed at what they saw as arrogant pronouncements or clucked their tongues at the patronizing statements. I am enclosing another letter that you are free to use. This better represents your naturalistic worldview and might engender substantive discussion rather than defensive reactions. Best regards, William E. Brown

19 Dear residents of ___________, As a humanist, I rely on the objective facts discovered by science. By the use of the scientific method, I see no proofs for the existence of God, heaven, hell, angels, or a soul that lives on after we die. If such evidence is discovered, I will gladly believe. I believe in people. I work hard to make this world a better place because this is all the existence we have. Because I believe the natural world is all that exists, I do not need to believe there are anything but natural causes for everything that occurs in the world, good or bad. We do not need a God or a holy book to tell us what is right and wrong. Most of morality is self-evident and we just need to use our reason to decide what is right and wrong.

20 It is difficult to believe in the existence of a good and powerful God when the world He supposedly created is filled with evil and disasters. I would assume He would intervene in some way to correct these wrongs. Instead, the world seems to be getting worse. When we look at the thousands of religions in the world, which one is correct? They all have conflicting beliefs about God, scriptures, rituals, and morality. This only adds to the confusion. I hope you will consider the rationale I have given here in your quest for truth. Sincerely yours, Jimmy Dunne President, Humanists of Houston

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22 “... Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” Matthew 22:37

23 Therefore, I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God - this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not be conformed any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind... - Romans 12:1-2 Using Your Mind...

24 ... men of Issachar, who understood the times and knew what Israel should do Chronicles 12:32... men of Issachar, who understood the times and knew what Israel should do Chronicles 12:32 Using Your Mind...

25 To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning... In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom. - Daniel 1:17,20 Using Your Mind...

26 WORLDVIEWS Using your mind

27 Worldview Values Behavior

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29 “I must say that when I go to church – and I do go to church – I ponder the mystery. I meditate on the ‘why?’ of ‘Why people are as they are?’ and ‘Why bad things happen to good people?’ and ‘Why good things happen to bad people?’... The mystery is what I think is, almost, the grand unifying theory of all mankind.” Tom Hanks

30 Your worldview answers the ULTIMATE questions… Your worldview answers the ULTIMATE questions… ORIGIN: ORIGIN: Where did everything come from? MEANING: Why are we here? MORALITY: How should we live? DESTINY: What happens when we die? ORIGIN: ORIGIN: Where did everything come from? MEANING: Why are we here? MORALITY: How should we live? DESTINY: What happens when we die?

31 UltimateQuestions Naturalism Transcen-dentalism Theism

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33 “I have never seen the slightest scientific proof of the religious ideas of heaven and hell, of future life for individuals or of a personal God.” Thomas Edison

34 “Here’s what happens when you die– you sit in a box and get eaten by worms. I guarantee that when you die, nothing cool happens.” Howard Stern

35 “It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God…I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that…” Thomas Nagel Professor of Law and PhilosophyNYU “It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God…I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that…” Thomas Nagel Professor of Law and PhilosophyNYU

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37 “Ultimately the Force is the larger mystery of the universe. And to trust your feelings is your way to that.” George Lucas “Ultimately the Force is the larger mystery of the universe. And to trust your feelings is your way to that.” George Lucas

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39 “Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment...” Hebrews 9:27

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41 “Our father, God, Allah, we thank you for this moment in time. Bless Kanye, bless his album, take over his album and take it to the highest place possible... In the name of Allah and the spirit of our inner essence. Amen.” Prayer by Kanye West prior to a concert, Blender

42 THEISTIC RELIGIONS JUDAISM (2,000 BC) CHRISTIANITY (AD 30) ISLAM (AD 600)

43 Naturalism Transcen-dentalism Theism CHRIST

44 When all is said and done and my life is over, all that will have truly mattered is that I made a choice in this life to believe in and serve the Lord Jesus Christ. -Kerry Livgren of Kansas of Kansas “Dust in the Wind”

45 1.Think Worldviewishly 2.Live Radically

46 LIFE

47 15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. 1 Peter 3:15-16

48 God’s Plan, Our Future: Making Sense of the World Dr. William E. Brown


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