Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Undesigned Coincidences and the Reliability of Scripture: Lydia McGrew to Talk to the Apologetics Academy This Saturday, July 2nd

Join us for another exciting session of the Apologetics Academy as we once again explore the big questions of life together. Participate in the free weekly interactive Webinar -- featuring a short talk by a special guest speaker (representing a position from anywhere across the theological and philosophical spectrum) followed by live open-floor Q&A and discussion.

Participants can engage the speaker using live audio and video, submit questions anonymously, participate in the chatbox, or simply watch and listen anonymously.

The meetings take place on Saturdays at 8pm GMT / 3pm Eastern / 2pm Central / 12noon Pacific.

In this coming Saturday's session (July 2nd), we are going to be in conversation with Lydia McGrew as she talks about so-called "undesigned coincidences" in the gospels and Acts, and how they provide support for Scripture's reliability.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://zoom.us/j/457736238

Or iPhone one-tap: 16465588656,457736238# or 14086380968,457736238#

Or Telephone:
Dial: +1 646 558 8656 (US Toll) or +1 408 638 0968 (US Toll)

Webinar ID: 457 736 238

International numbers available: https://zoom.us/zoomconference?m=5VaKUGtZgKph5g_86aiAKHSbBNyH70xj

No Need for Nasheed

The following is a reworked and enlarged version of a video I put out a few years ago. If you are not aware of the fact that Satan has his own Qur'an, that Satan's Qur'an is more powerful than Allah's Qur'an, that Satan produced and produces this superior Qur'an exclusively through gay people, and that everyone who even listens to Satan's Qur'an is going to hell, then make sure you watch this video.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Ramadan 2016: Feel the Love

Earlier this month, I made a short video about Ramadan. Let's go through some of the responses I received.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Speaking in Florida This Monday (June 27)

Facebook Censors Post Reporting Jihadi Threat against Me and My Mother

Yesterday, I received yet another threat on YouTube (no surprise there). I posted my peaceful reply to the threat on Facebook, but Facebook removed the post, claiming that it violates the community standards. If Facebook censorship now means that we can't even draw attention to threats, it's time we asked who they're trying to protect.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Did Muhammad Tell Us to Love One Another? A Reply to Utah Lt. Governor Spencer Cox

Recently, Utah Lieutenant Governor Spencer Cox gave a speech that’s become quite popular. In the speech, Cox says:
Ultimately, there is only one way for us to come together. It must happen at a personal level. We must learn to truly love one another. The Prophet Muhammad is reported to have said: "You will not enter paradise until you believe, and you will not believe until you love one another." Jesus said, "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you."
While it may be comforting, following a tragedy, to think that Muhammad commanded people to love one another, is this what Muhammad actually meant? Let's take a closer look.

Monday, June 20, 2016

An Historical Critique of Islamic Origins: A Conversation with Jay Smith



Here is the recording of Saturday's Apologetics Academy webinar session with Jay Smith on Islamic beginnings. Enjoy!

For information on upcoming sessions of the Apologetics Academy and on how you can participate, see the confirmed speaker lineup at this link.

Islam's Deification of Muhammad: A Conversation with Sam Shamoun



Here is the recording of a recent Apologetics Academy webinar session with Sam Shamoun on Islam's Deification of Muhammad. Enjoy!

For information on upcoming sessions of the Apologetics Academy and on how you can participate, see the confirmed speaker lineup at this link.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

An Historical Critique of Islamic Origins: Jay Smith to Talk to the Apologetics Academy This Saturday

As readers of this blog will probably know, I run a weekly webinar series called the Apologetics Academy. Each week, I bring in a different specialist (representing positions across the theological and philosophical spectrum) to talk about topics of interest to Christians. There is always plenty of opportunity for audience participation and discussion. The idea is to provide Christians with the opportunity to interact one-on-one with a top scholar or apologist that they probably would otherwise never have access to. Bringing in non-Christian guests also provides a unique opportunity for Christians to practice their skills in defending the faith against some of the best objections. The currently confirmed speaker line-up can be found at this link.

Participants can engage the speaker using live audio and video, submit questions anonymously, participate in the chatbox, or simply watch and listen anonymously.

The meetings usually take place on Saturdays at 8pm GMT / 3pm Eastern / 2pm Central / 12noon Pacific.

This coming Saturday (June 18th), we are blessed to have Jay Smith of Pfander Apologetics teach a webinar to our group. Jay is going to be exploring the origins of Islam.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://zoom.us/j/457736238

Doing so will immediately prompt you to download and install the Webinar platform we use, called Zoom. This should take at most a minute or two.

I hope to see plenty of you there! All are welcome, Muslim and Christian alike.

Three Questions for Moderate Muslims

Islam is in the headlines almost every day now, and it's rarely for something positive. Moderate Muslims are distancing themselves from the actions and teachings of jihadis, but what do their responses to terrorist attacks really accomplish?

In light of recent events, here are three questions for moderate Muslims.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Omar Mateen's Ramadan Massacre at an Orlando Gay Bar

Omar Mateen
Early in the morning on June 12th, 2016, American Muslim Omar Mir Seddique Mateen opened fire at "The Pulse," a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Mateen killed around 50 people and injured dozens more while shouting “Allahu Akbar!” During the attack, he called 911 to declare his allegiance to ISIS.

One of Mateen's former co-workers said that he regularly spouted hate-filled, racist, and misogynistic words, but wasn't fired because he was a Muslim. Mateen had ties to radical imam Marcus Dwayne Robertson and to other Islamic fundamentalists.

So, did this shooting have something to do with Islam?

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Islam's Deification of Muhammad: Sam Shamoun to Teach This Saturday's Apologetics Academy



As readers of this blog will probably know, I run a weekly webinar series called the Apologetics Academy. Each week, I bring in a different specialist (representing positions across the theological and philosophical spectrum) to talk about topics of interest to Christians. There is always plenty of opportunity for audience participation and discussion. The idea is to provide Christians with the opportunity to interact one-on-one with a top scholar or apologist that they probably would otherwise never have access to. Bringing in non-Christian guests also provides a unique opportunity for Christians to practice their skills in defending the faith against some of the best objections. The currently confirmed speaker line-up can be found at this link.

Participants can engage the speaker using live audio and video, submit questions anonymously, participate in the chatbox, or simply watch and listen anonymously.

The meetings usually take place on Saturdays at 8pm GMT / 3pm Eastern / 2pm Central / 12noon Pacific.

This coming Saturday (June 11th), we are going to be in conversation with Sam Shamoun (of Answering-Islam.org) on Islam's deification of Muhammad. To help prepare, Sam recommends reading the materials available at this link.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://zoom.us/j/457736238

Doing so will immediately prompt you to download and install the Webinar platform we use, called Zoom. This should take at most a minute or two.

I hope to see plenty of you there! All are welcome, Muslim and Christian alike.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Ramadan: Fasting or Feasting?

Fasting during the month of Ramadan is one of the Five Pillars of Islam.

When fasting, Muslims are required to abstain from food, beverages (including water), and sexual intercourse during daylight hours (from dawn to sunset).

This sort of fasting, however, is actually a series of feasts. Most Muslims celebrating Ramadan eat a tremendous amount of food before sunrise and again after sunset. Numerous reports have shown that Muslims consume far more food during Ramadan than during other months. The results are obesity, diabetes, and other health problems.

This tendency to feast and call it "fasting" draws attention to a deeper problem in Islam.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Coming Soon! Shabir Ally vs. Jonathan McLatchie: "Is Jesus God, or is He a Prophet of Islam?"


Dr. Shabir Ally and I will be doing a "round 2" debate this August in Woolwich, London. This year, we will be debating "Is Jesus God, or a Prophet of Islam?" See the poster above for details!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Messianic Prophecy in the Jewish Scriptures: A Conversation with Dr. Michael Brown at the Apologetics Academy




Here is the recording of the Webinar I hosted as part of my Apologetics Academy weekly webinar series, with Dr. Michael Brown on Messianic prophecy in the Jewish Scriptures -- also featuring Sam Shamoun and Yusuf Ismail! This session is very much worth watching. Enjoy!

Friday, May 27, 2016

"Tony Costa Sent Me To The Hospital" A Close Call for Ijaz Ahmad and the Allat Syndrome



That's right folks, you read that correctly! I sent Ijaz Ahmad to the hospital! No, I did not engage in any physical altercation with Ijaz to send him to the hospital. Apparently it was based on something I never said that caused Ijaz to convulse with laughter which triggered symptoms of a severe chronic illness which he has that landed him in a hospital.  What was it that I said that caused Ijaz such convulsions?

Monday, May 23, 2016

Messianic Prophecy in the Jewish Scriptures: Dr. Michael Brown Presenting to This Saturday's Apologetics Academy

Those who follow this blog may know that I run a Webinar every Saturday at 8pm GMT / 3pm Eastern / 2pm Central / 12noon Pacific, called the "Apologetics Academy" (http://www.apologetics-academy.org). I bring in speakers from all across the theological and philosophical spectrum to present to us about a topic of interest to Christians. We then open it up for open-floor Q&A and discussion. You can see the complete speaker lineup, as well as recordings of some of our past sessions, at this link.

Participants can engage the speaker using live audio and video, submit questions anonymously, participate in the chatbox, or simply watch and listen anonymously. The Webinar is free, and open for anyone to join and participate, regardless of your point of view.

This coming Saturday, May 28th, we are blessed to have internationally renowned Biblical scholar and theologian Dr. Michael Brown (AskDrBrown.org) presenting to the group. He is going to be talking to us about Messianic prophecy in the Jewish Scriptures.

To join the Webinar, please click the link below at, or shortly before, the meeting's start time. I normally open up the room 45 to 60 minutes in advance of our scheduled start time.

https://zoom.us/j/457736238

Following the link will prompt you to download and install the webinar platform we use, called Zoom. It downloads and installs very quickly and is extremely user-friendly.

I look forward to seeing many of you on Saturday!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Zakia Belkhiri's "Peace Selfies" (and Her Antisemitic Rants)

Recently, a young woman named Zakia Belkhiri showed up at an anti-Islam protest and began taking selfies with those who had gathered. The BBC, Huffington Post, and many other sites praised Belkhiri for dealing with the protesters peacefully and for setting a positive example. A problem arose, however, when people went to Belkhiri's social media pages and found viciously antisemitic comments.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

A Response to Yahya Snow On My Debate With Yusuf Ismail

Yahya Snow, a notorious Muslim YouTube polemicist, based in London, whom I have had dealings with in the past, has written a review of my recent debate with South African Muslim apologist Yusuf Ismail on Unbelievable?. The debate topic was "Did Jesus' earliest followers believe He was God?" Yahya begins his review by noting,
"I did not appreciate Jonathan McLatchie’s approach in this debate – it smacked of insincerity. I don’t believe that is an attitude anybody who is putting information out into the public domain should espouse. Very disappointing."
Snow goes on,
"Jonathan McLatchie begins by outlining the significance of this discussion as well stating his aims in the discussion. McLatchie at 9.45 injects wild speculation into his theology by claiming it is essential for the Christian worldview that Jesus was divine. Where’s his proof here? This seems to be old speculation that other evangelical Trinitarian Christians are putting forward, others such as James White."
Yes, you read that right. According to Snow, my contention that the deity of Christ is an essential Christian doctrine is "wild speculation." Actually, this contention can be supported from the words of Jesus Himself. In John 8:24, Jesus makes an allusion to Isaiah 43:10, saying, "I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am you will die in your sins."

Does Paul Affirm Christ's Deity?

Yahya goes on,
"Jonathan McLatchie’s intention is to attempt to demonstrate the disciples believed in the divinity of Jesus in an effort to refute Islam. McLatchie wants to show all the earliest sources affirm the deity of Jesus and/or the original followers affirmed this to try and “win the debate”. Jonathan firstly contends Paul clearly affirmed the deity of Jesus in Phil 2:5-11 and 1 Cor 8:6 Hold on did he say 1 Cor 8:6? If he did then we are all left scratching our heads as this is a text Unitarian Christians use to show the Father is the only true God (not Jesus!). What is Jonathan McLatchie thinking here? Here’s the text: yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things cameand for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live."
Yes, 1 Corinthians 8:6 affirms the deity of Christ. Paul takes the Jewish shema of Deuteronomy 6:4 ("Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God. The Lord is One") and expands on it ("yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist"). Paul thus identifies Jesus Christ as the Lord of the shema and even identifies him as being co-creator with the Father. What is said of Jesus in 1 Corinthians 8:6 ("through whom are all things and through whom we exist") cannot be said of any mere creature.

Later in his review, Yahya asks whether the Carmen Christi (Philippians 2:5-11) supports the idea of the deity of Jesus. He writes,
"This is not really related to the debate subject either but it may be interesting for folks to delve deeper into this. A lot of evangelicals use this argument. However, does the Carmen Christie really teach the deity of Jesus in the manner in which Trinitarians would have us believe? I don’t think so. For those who are interested in researching this area, look into the idea of exaltation theology and subordinationism too. Again, are we seeing evangelicals thrusting their later church traditions on to the text?"
Actually, it is very related to the debate subject, since the Carmen Christi, quoted by Paul in Philippians 2:5-11, is believed by many scholars to be one of our very earliest sources concerning the beliefs of the early church. Given that our debate was on whether the earliest followers of Jesus affirmed His deity, how can Yahya Snow fail to see the relevance of this?

In verse 6 of Philippians 2, we read that Christ ὃς ἐν μορφῇ Θεοῦ ὑπάρχων (hos en morphē Theou hyparchōn) -- literally, "in the form of God subsisting..." In verse 7, we read, ἀλλὰ ἑαυτὸν ἐκένωσεν μορφὴν δούλου λαβών ἐν ὁμοιώματι ἀνθρώπων (alla heuton ekenōsen morphēn doulou labōn en homoiōmati anthrōpōn) -- literally, "but himself emptied, the form of a servant having taken in the likeness of men." Notice that Paul uses the Greek word μορφῇ (morphē) in both clauses. He thus puts the two in the same category. Just as he was made in the form of a bondservant, so in the same sense he was in the form of God Himself. Verses 10 and 11 also allude to Isaiah 45:23, in which we read, "To me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear allegiance." The whole context of the Carmen Christi, moreover, is an instruction to emulate the humility of Christ. But one is hardly commended for humility for the act of not seeking to achieve equality with God. Rather, it makes sense only if one is exercising humility by laying aside the divine privilege that was rightfully His.