NO BS BS AND BIG ISSUES WE FACE TODAY
For the past four-and-a-half years, Friday after Friday (when not traveling and training with Global Training Network), I have spearheaded an apologetics and Bible study we call the NO BS BS. The overall topic has been what we call “Big Issues We Face Today.”
While we met before our church planting days in Europe, the NO BS BS picked up again following our return in 1992 after five years in Holland, planting the Crossroads International Church (still thriving). In the years from 1992 to 2017, we studied book and after book of the Bible.
Then, in 2017 we began the “Big Issues” apologetic series. Here are some Scriptural reasons why:
“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition [and ideology] and the basic principles of the world rather than on Christ.”
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
(2 Corinthians 10:4-5)
“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.”
(1 Peter 3:15)
“I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.”
Apart from the Biblical admonitions to contend for our faith, it was clear that our Western Culture in general the the United States in particular was drifting from its Judeo-Christian Theistic moorings. I wanted to know why it was and how we can present the Gospel in a compelling yet compassionate way in the midst of the drift.
“BIG ISSUES WE FACE TODAY” MAJOR TOPICS
Below are some of the major categories we have covered. It took 92 studies, as each category took us between four and seventeen sessions to cover. Contact me if you would like to know the specific topics in each category.
We also took a break from the apologetic topics to do a fifteen part series on “Prophetic Signs Merging with Current Events and End Times Conditions.” Here are the Big Issues categories:
PART I — DOES GOD REALLY EXIST OR ARE WE JUST MAKING THIS UP?
PART II — WHAT KIND OF GOD IS IT THAT EXISTS?PART III — ISN’T CHANCE WONDERFUL; WE ARE CREATURES OF CHANCE AREN’T WE?
PART IV — THE GROWTH OF CHRISTENDOM, AND WHERE THE WESTERN WORLD TURNED OFF FROM A JUDEO-CHRISTIAN THEISTIC WORLDVIEW
PART V — THE DECLINE OF CHRISTENDOM, AND WHERE THE WESTERN WORLD TURNED OFF FROM A JUDEO-CHRISTIAN THEISTIC WORLDVIEW
PART VI— 19TH CENTURY SLEDGEHAMMERS TO THE FAITH AND WHERE THE WESTERN WORLD TURNED OFF FROM A JUDEO-CHRISTIAN THEISTIC WORLDVIEW
PART VII — WHERE WAS THE CHURCH DURING THE 18TH CENTURY ENLIGHTENMENT AND 19TH CENTURY SLEDGEHAMMERS TO THE FAITH?
Under 19th Century Sledgehammers to the Faith category, we studied ideologies (and their founders) like Marxism, Anarchism, Theological Liberalism, Darwinism, and more.
To counter 19th century ideologies undercutting our Judeo-Christian faith, we also saw that the 19th century was the century of great missionaries and the spread of the global mission movement. We did twenty-two studies evidencing this. The darkness cannot extinguish the light … just when it seems to go out in one part of the world, it springs up afresh in another part.
THE 20TH CENTURY: SO WHAT AM I (ARE WE) MISSING?
For the past year-and-a-half, we have been closing in on the final two categories of our Big Issues study. They are:
PART VIII — 20TH CENTURY ACIDS OF MODERNITY… AND WHERE THE WESTERN WORLD TURNED OFF FROM A JUDEO-CHRISTIAN THEISTIC WORLDVIEW
PART IX— ANTIDOTES TO THE 20TH CENTURY ACIDS OF MODERNITY
The title of “Acids of Modernity” is a reference to corrosive ideologies that continue to eat away at the fabric of a Biblical worldview. Following are some of the acidic influences we have looked at:
(Part 1) — Sigmund Freud and Psychoanalysis
(Part 2) — Modernity and Its Acidic Ingredients
(Part 3) — Ernest Hemmingway
(Part 4) — George Orwell (may be an antidote)
(Part 5) — Joseph Stalin
(Part 6) — “Christian” Existentialism
(Part 7) — Atheistic Existentialism
(Part 8) — Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus
(Part 9) — The Beat 50s and Turbulent 60s
(Part 10) — Ayn Rand
(Part 11) — Bertrand Russell
(Part 12) — Margaret Sanger
(Part 13) — Social Justice Movement
(Part 14) — “Live Not by Lies” and Soft Totalitarianism (first part an antidote)
(Part 15) — Sexual Revolution and its Antidote
(Part 16) — Postmodernism, Deconstructionism, and Progressive Christianity
(Part 17) — Critical Theory, Critical Race Theory, and the Gospel
(Part 18) — BLM, 1619, and 1776 Projects (1776 Project is an antidote)
(Part 19) — Intersectionality, Language Manipulation, and the Religion of
(Part 20) — The Quicksand of Secularism
(Part 21) — Humanism and the Humanist Manifesto(s)
(Part 22) — Secularizing Schools and Educators/John Dewey
(Part 23) — Secularizing Schools and the Courts
(Part 24) — Madalyn Murray O’Hair
(Part 25) — Unitarianism
(Part 26) — Teachers Union and the Pandemic
(Part 27) — Covid (Treatments, Vaccines, Boosters, and Masks)
So, what am I missing? I should ask, What are we missing, as others in our NO BS BS have taken on many of these 20th century acids’ topics?
ONE LAST TOPIC: ANTIDOTES TO THE 20TH CENTURY ACIDS OF MODERNITY
In the past year plus, we have also done twenty studies of Christian “antidotes” to the acids above. I won’t give the full list but they include Christian leaders like C.S. Lewis, Francis Schaeffer, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Henrietta Mears, and more.
The apostle Paul declares that the rulers of this age “are coming to nothing” (1 Cor. 2:8), that the “wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight,” and that he “catches the wise in their craftiness” (1 Cor. 3:19). We have found Paul’s words to be true in our our Big Issues We Face Today studies. And so we say with the apostle Paul:
“Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.”
(1 Corinthians 1:20-24, ESV)
Once more, the darkness cannot extinguish the light.
“Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Grateful to be following and proclaiming Jesus as the light of the world with you,
Linus, Sharon, the NO BS BSERS, and the Global Training Network team