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Evidence to strengthen faith?

Discussion in 'Requests for Christian Advice' started by JohnB445, Oct 21, 2021.

  1. JohnB445

    JohnB445 Well-Known Member

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    My faith is the same as it was when I first believed. It isn't necessarily stronger or weaker. It is the same.

    I believed without any evidence, it just happened even though at first it seemed bizarre to me God would come down to earth in the flesh but it happened. I was very skeptical at first, but that all changed in a second.

    My goal was to find out the truth, it also seemed dumb to me to think we exist for no reason and there is no was no purpose, not only that it was very bleak.

    I've been reading the Bible, and accepting it as truth, I haven't even bothered looking for evidence, because I already believe it is true, and think reading it is a better use of my time than searching for evidence of something I already believe in.

    It's like believing a mathematical formula works, yet searching for evidence of the mathematical formula being true.

    Where should one start if they want to find evidence for what they believe?
     
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  2. disciple Clint

    disciple Clint Well-Known Member

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    I believe you have looked in the right places and accepted the evidence of scripture and the knowledge of your heart
     
  3. Sarah G

    Sarah G Human bean. Supporter

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    I believe the Cold Case Christian books and videos by homicide detective J Warner Wallace are popular for both sceptics and believers looking to strengthen their faith (or hone debating skills?).
    It's great that your faith is already strong, sounds like you don't feel a need to prove it to anybody.
     
  4. timf

    timf Regular Member

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    Where should one start if they want to find evidence for what they believe?

    You can find all sorts of bible prophecy that has already been fulfilled.

    The Jewish race is sometimes cited as proof of God's intervention as no other race that has gone through their difficulties would have remained intact, rather they would have faded into the obscurity of history.

    Creation itself testifies to its creator. From microbiology to astronomy the hand of God is displayed.

    However, perhaps the most significant "proof" for an individual is love. 1 Cor 13:4-7 defines love as selflessness. Our society has reached historically unprecedented levels of selfishness. As a result there is less and less real love encountered. Sadly this is also happening in some Christian circles. However, it is possible to find some that still show the love that is supposed to define Christian practice.
     
  5. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    In your post, you've offered a rationale for why you believe: It makes no sense to you that we are all mere accidents of Nature, existing without meaning or higher purpose. So, you don't "just believe" for no reason; your Reason (God-given, by the way) has provided you with evidence for your faith. This is how wise, sensible faith works; it is always anchored to knowledge and reason in some measure. Blind faith, faith that "hangs in mid-air," resting on nothing, is very dangerous and easily dissolved. You don't want this kind of faith.

    Here are some links to websites whose purpose is to supply to believers good, rational, evidentiary bases for their faith:

    www.crossexamined.org
    www.str.org
    www.reasonablefaith.org
    www.coldcasechristianity.com
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2021
  6. Aussie Pete

    Aussie Pete Well-Known Member Supporter

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    You've made a good start. Faith is the assurance of things hoped for. (Hebrews 11:1). Hope is important. Anyone can say "Have faith!" Sure, but in what? This is where God's word is so helpful. Someone called hope the mould into which we pour faith. If we start with the premise that the Bible is God's word, we are well able to place our faith in it.

    Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ (Romans 10:17) We can have the Word spoken many times before we hear it. This may apply to the initial salvation experience and also through our Christian lives.

    Evidence? You can ask God to show you. Or accept it at face value. My son was fascinated by electric light. He was just a toddler, so I'd pick him up and he would flick the switch. A miracle! The light came on! He know nothing of electricity, how power is generated and transmitted to the home. He knew that if you operated the switch, on came the light. I have an electronics/electrical background. My superior knowledge made no difference. I had to flick the switch just like him.
     
  7. eleos1954

    eleos1954 God is Love Supporter

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    Jesus is evidence .... we are to pattern our lives with that of how He lived in human form.

    His life, death and resurrection is the evidence.

    1 John 4:8 gives us the idea we are to love others because God is love.

    so .... the focus should be for us to learn to love as God loves thus reflecting His character ... how we live our lives is evidence to ourselves and to others.

    1 Corinthians 13:2

    And if I have prophetic powers (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), and understand all the secret truths and mysteries and possess all knowledge, and if I have [sufficient] faith so that I can remove mountains, but have not love (God’s love in me) I am nothing (a useless nobody).
     
  8. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Well-Known Member

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    What made you believe in Christianity in the first place? How old were you when you started believing in Christianity? Why not other religion?
     
  9. JohnB445

    JohnB445 Well-Known Member

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    I was 20 years old. The prophecies from the Bible were the starter to what helped spark my belief in Christianity, such as Israel becoming a nation and the Jews gathering when they were in diaspora in the past. The historical account of the resurrection and the unshakable faith of the first Christians who witnessed it which were many.

    Why not other religions you asked? I simply haven't looked at any other religion deeply, I decided to start studying Christianity as that was the religion held by my ancestors and also the largest following. If God wanted to let himself be known to the world, I would first assume the religion with the largest following would be it. But that reason alone was why I first chose to give Christianity a shot.
     
  10. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Well-Known Member

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    And was there a point when you were utterly convinced that Christianity is true, or have you ever had doubts?
     
  11. JohnB445

    JohnB445 Well-Known Member

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    The moment I became born again and experienced regeneration.

    I haven't really had any doubts.

    I think about God, almost everyday.
     
  12. LenJ

    LenJ New Member

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    There are loads of great Christian apologists out there who talk about the hard evidence for a belief in Christ. My favourites though are Lee Strobel, Nabeel Qureshi, William Lane Craig and Gary Habermas. All have written books and all have videos on YouTube. It was reading Lee Strobel's book "A Case for Christ" that changed my mind about Christianity (I was previously an atheist, thinking that there was no evidence to back up the accounts of Jesus' life- how wrong I was!). He also has a talk on YouTube under the same title which is worth looking up too if you're not sure you want to read a whole book on the topic.
     
  13. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Well-Known Member

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    Do you think apologetics is enough for a genuine conversion, or there has to be a genuine spiritual experience in addition to the intellectual arguments for the conversion to be really genuine?

    I personally think that apologetics can only get you so far, intellectually speaking, but at the end of the day, if God is real, something spiritual, some kind of spiritual encounter with God, has to happen as well. Otherwise if it would just be an "intellectual" conversion, if that makes sense. What are your thoughts?
     
  14. LenJ

    LenJ New Member

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    Yeah I think you definitely have a point there. I'm a very logical minded person so apologetics is probably the only route I ever could have come by but initially I think my conversion was purely intellectual. Basically I'd read all the books and had concluded that the Bible, or at least the gospels, were very likely to be true so I should rethink my position on the whole thing but I didn't really know what to do next. Prayer was very awkward at first as it felt forced but if I'm honest there have been moments in my life where I've prayed, even when I was an "atheist" ( for seriously ill family members etc) as some part of me deep down seemed to know that there was someone listening, but this quickly got forgotten once life got easy again!

    I think apologetics are probably more useful for some people than others. I grew up around atheists who saw Christians as gullible/ following a really old book without any evidence to back it up so even though I had that niggling sense that there may be something more, I personally had to have hard evidence before I could allow myself to explore any further.
     
  15. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Well-Known Member

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    Once you explored further, what did you find?
     
  16. LenJ

    LenJ New Member

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    Well I haven't had any spectacular "spiritual experiences" like some people have, i.e dreams or similar, but I do tend to see signs of God everywhere now i.e when I'm out in nature or look up at the stars I just think "I can't believe I used to think this just popped up randomly out of nowhere"! It now seems obvious to me that it's the work of a Creator and I think the only reason i didn't see this earlier is because I'd been so dead against the idea of God and had thought there was no rational reason to believe in Him. I also used to be into meditation (not so much now as I'm unsure how it fits with Christian teachings/ whether it's a good idea) and occasionally I would get this overwhelming sense of peace/ joy and would "see" a bright white light even though my eyes were closed. I think Buddhists know this as a nimitta and I don't think its all that rare. Anyway, sometimes I wonder if that was an encounter with God also and I just didn't recognise it as such at the time. I'd be interested to hear what others reckon on this.

    I also still pray but it feels a bit less awkward now; more like I'm actually communicating with someone than say leaving a message on an answering machine or just talking to myself! I'm taking this as a good sign. Hopefully it's not just that I'm more "practiced" at it.
     
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