Q: Talk about what inspired GOD THE REASON book. A:God the Reason is the fruit of a course developed and taught for over 15 years in various churches, colleges, and seminaries, built on the frustration of Christians (myself included) being unnecessarily intimidated by arguments built on irrational blind faith assumptions. Well-meaning defenders of Christian truth too often respond to sophisticated, unbelieving arguments by compromising the intellectual high ground of Christianity, or by compromising the infinite excellence of the God we love and defend. Unfortunately, books that adequately deal with these problems can be highly technical, philosophical, and difficult for the average Christian to grasp without time and theological or philosophical training. Yet, this need not be the case. I wanted to produce an adequate, but understandable work that displays how easy it is to identify and affirm our intellectual high ground and the unjustified blind faith assumptions of unbelief, even while growing in the knowledge and love of the infinite excellence of God.
Q: What are some of the essential themes in the book? A: Without the God of Scripture, life and the world are reduced to pointless absurdity. Created and sustained by God, we depend on Him for all things, including life, knowledge, truth, meaning, purpose, and a moral code for life. The infinite excellence of God is the source of the believer’s faith, joy, and assurance in the face of any opposition, circumstance, or deep and dark troubles and mysteries. Q: What are the main arguments atheists give for their unbelief and what should be the Christian's response to those? A: Atheists give many reasons, but perhaps the most popular and familiar is they are operating on reason and science while believers operate on faith. Christians believe that which is unscientific and un-provable, while atheists trust in science and reason, and from them draw their conclusions. Faith is looking for comfort where reason and science give no answers. Thus, the atheist characterizes Christian faith as “blind faith,” or a leap in the dark. And when Christians accept this characterization, i.e., faith versus reason and science, they have already conceded defeat. But, the opposite is actually the case. All people are people of faith. The issue is: whose object of faith has true authority and can be trusted? The faith versus reason picture obscures the fact that atheists actually trust in their own opinion and their own limited perspective about things they could never know apart from God telling them. Or, put another way, they trust in their ability to know what would require knowledge of the entire universe and beyond to know. To know that God does not exist requires the omniscience of the God they say does not exist. Or put another way, how does an atheist know that God does not exist when they do not know what is in my garage? In fact, it is quite irrational to presume to make authoritative statements about things they cannot possibly know. Believers, on the other hand, trust in the authority and word of the One who created and sustains all things, and the only One who can answer the ultimate questions about Himself and His universe.
Q: How should Christians respond when atheists dismiss miracles? A: Atheists will say that Scripture cannot be true and therefore the God of Scripture cannot be true because biblical miracles are unreasonable and unscientific. Jonah in a whale for three days or the sun standing still in the sky, are impossible as contrary to natural laws and therefore Scripture is not true. How does an atheist know that the laws of nature always operate the same way, or have always operated the same way? They cannot know this from their limited vantage point, and such an assumption is contrary to the foundation of their belief that the world is founded on random chance. How can they say the world always operates in a certain way when they posit a universe of random chance? If their worldview were true, they could not possibly know that miracles are impossible. What would certainly be impossible is the uniform and universal laws on which they base their rejection of miracles. Therefore, atheists must presume God does not exist to prove miracles are impossible. They must assume that which they are trying to prove. A God that can design, create, and continually uphold every aspect of the universe can certainly put a man in a whale for a few days. Such miracles are “kids’ stuff” compared to His ongoing ordering of the universe; an ordered universe that cannot be explained by random chance but is easily explained by the God of Scripture.
Q: Tell us about THE BOX and what makes that book unique. A: The uniqueness ofThe Boxresides in how it illustrates and simplifies deep and profound apologetic principles by the use of fun and easy-to-follow conversations between Mr. Christian and Mr. Atheist. For instance, Mr. A would need to know everything about the universe and beyond to know that God does not exist, and yet he doesn’t even know what is in Mr. C’s garage! Short and easy to read, it helps believers to see the irrationality of unbelief in short order. Q: These two books are part of a high school course curriculum. Talk about that. A: Based on the content of God the Reason and The Box, we currently offer the Unbreakable Faith online course. Unbreakable Faith explores the infinite excellence of God’s perfections, exposes unbelief as irrational and unscientific blind faith, demonstrates the impossibility of life and the universe apart from God, and boosts faith, assurance, and joy in the face of the most sophisticated attacks of unbelief. Christianity not only gives purpose, meaning, and eternal life, it forms the necessary basis for science, logic, and all right thinking. Benefits of the course include:
Immunizes believers against the most sophisticated arguments of unbelief
Strengthens joy, faith and assurance in Christ and Scripture
Exalts God’s infinite excellence and nurtures a deeper love for Him
Gives simple and effective ways to address the deepest theological difficulties and mysteries
Saves time and effort by clarifying and simplifying apologetic principles and unbelieving views
Easy to learn without technical jargon or need to read numerous technical books
Q: You talk about how your "life was turned right-side up from a view of the infinite excellence of Jesus Christ and the Gospel as revealed in Scripture." Tell us about that experience. A; Two years after graduating from college, when the fun, foolishness, and optimism of my life in a fraternity was past, I was overwhelmed by the pointlessness of my life without an ultimate eternal destination. With my best days seemingly behind me, life appeared short and depressing. I started reading Scripture and the Christian booklets given to me by my brother, and was confronted with the idea that by living as my own authority and soaking up His material blessings, I was truly showing contempt for God. In Christ, God gave me the profound purpose and meaning I found so elusive, and the forgiveness of my darkest sins. In Christ, I saw God’s infinite love in loving the unlovable, infinite wisdom in saving the un-savable, and perfect justice by suffering infinite wrath on Himself to uphold His justice that He might save me and remain righteous. I was thrilled that such a God would love me. Q: In a culture which seems to be rejecting all things having to do with God, what should Christians do to grow deeper in their faith? A: Believers need to adjust their priorities, sharpen their focus to those things that build their faith, and jettison the many trivial things that distract and clutter our attention. We need to carve out more uninterrupted time to better see and understand that our joy, hope, faith, and assurance in the midst of unbelief and opposition, are found in a profound knowledge and love of God’s infinite excellence as revealed in Scripture, and as compared to the temporary and futile nature of life and all things without Him. We need to grasp that unbelief stems from a rejection of the implications of God as creator and redeemer, our debt to love and honor the One to whom we owe all things—apart from whom we have nothing—and the necessary yielding of our will and presumed authority to God’s will and authority. Believers need to spend more time getting to know the infinite excellence of the One with whom they will spend eternity, a soon approaching reality. Q: What do you hope readers gain from GOD THE REASON? A: I hope this book offers readers an immunity to the most sophisticated arguments of unbelief, a deeper faith, joy and assurance in Christ and Scripture, and a greater ability to show the necessity of Christ and Scripture for knowledge, truth, meaning, and eternal life. Ultimately, I hope readers find a deeper, more profound understanding of God’s infinite excellence whether in the face of prosperity or our deepest and darkest troubles.
About Craig Biehl
Craig received his AB in Economics from Cal Berkeley, MBA from UCLA Anderson School of Management, ThM from Dallas Theological Seminary, and PhD in Systematic Theology from Westminster Theological Seminary. He is the author of The Infinite Merit of Christ: The Glory of Christ’s Obedience in the Theology of Jonathan Edwards; Reading Religious Affections, The Box: Answering the Faith of Unbelief, and God the Reason: How Infinite Excellence Gives Unbreakable Faith. Craig and his wife Angelica enjoy ministering with patients and staff at a local convalescent and hospice center near their home in Philadelphia. For more information, visitwww.PilgrimsRock.com.
Endorsements for God The Reason
“Craig Biehl’s, God the Reason, is a remarkable work. It presents theology proper–the knowledge of God–in all of its transcendent importance and breadth. It does so in a way that is accessible, clear and spiritually invigorating. If you are thirsting for a deeper and more personal knowledge of the Lord of the universe, drink deeply of this study. The divine perfections celebrated here will bless your life, stir your reason and ground your faith on an unmovable foundation.” --Dr. Peter A. Lillback, President, Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia
“This thought-provoking work shows the emptiness of atheism from an angle not often taken. Without indulging in technical terminology or obscure philosophical arguments, Craig Biehl starts with the attributes of God revealed in Scripture, builds a rational worldview upon them, and demonstrates convincingly that without such a God life makes no sense at all.” --Dr. Joel R. Beeke, President, Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary
“Craig Biehl’s God the Reason is a very thorough pre-suppositional apologetic, arguing God’s existence and his necessity for all reasoning, thinking, meaning, and therefore living. The book is a continuous, orderly defense of the biblical worldview. Its arguments are clear and cogent. I hope it gains many readers, Christian and non-Christian alike.” --Dr. John M. Frame, J. D. Trimble Professor of Systematic Theology and Philosophy, Reformed Theological Seminary
“Based on the conviction that Scripture as the self-attesting word of the Triune God is the indispensable foundation of all knowledge, this volume explores in a compelling manner how the truth of the being and primary attributes (or “perfections”) of God is essential for fundamental issues of faith and life. Written for a wide audience, it will be read with considerable profit in our increasingly secularizing times, whether by those who are searching for answers or those seeking greater clarity on the foundations of “what man is to believe concerning God and what duty God requires of man” (Westminster Shorter Catechism).” --Dr. Richard B. Gaffin, Jr., Professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology, Emeritus, Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia