I’ve been so far behind, I think I saw my future self passing me on the way home!  Here’s a great post from Michael Patton over at the Parchment & Pen blog.  (Michael seems to be going through a rough patch lately.  Send up a prayer or two for him if you think about it.)

Not too long ago I wrote a blog post about 14 examples of the type of apologetics (defending the faith) that Christians should not use. Due to an enthusiastically sent email I received today, I have a 15th example. And I am not happy about it.

I know how it is. We believe what we profess and we are quick to accept anything and everything that confirms some aspect of our faith. I am the same way. However, what we believe is too important for us to be uncritical, even about those claims that seem to support what we believe.

These pictures below represent supposed archaeological finds of giants in Greece. The person who sent these to me (and lots of other people after being forwarded many times) believes this to be proof of the giants that lived in the days of David (Goliath and his bothers; the Nephilim, etc.). The title of the email was “Nephilim – Giants in Greece.” The last words on the email were these: “And in the final analysis…….. The Bible does tell the truth and with precise accuracy….. No doubt about that!!!!”

I must admit that my critical admonition here is only going one way. I have not checked to see if this is true. I simply know it is not.

The enthusiastic, “No doubt about that” from the sender scares me for many reasons.

1. I am frightened by the lack of critical spirit this represents among Christians who blindly accept any bit of “evidence” that seems to support the faith. This is not the way God wants us to use our minds, even if the uncritical conclusions support his truth. We simply can’t do this folks.

2. I am also afraid of a faith built upon such tabloid evidences. Whether it is the Bible code, the Shroud of Turin, the lost day of Joshua, crying statues of Mary, or Noah’s Ark sightings, these type of things usually don’t last. If your faith is built on them, it won’t last either.

Could it be that we find evidences that confirm our faith? Certainly. We do all the time. It is not the finding of evidences that concerns me, but the uncritical method with which these evidences are evaluated by many well-meaning Christians. I am sure that some Sunday School teacher is going to use these pictures in a PowerPoint presentation this Sunday to show how Christianity is true.

Want to set people up to leave the faith later? This is the first step.

3. Finally, this gives our critics great ammunition. I know that critics will always find their reasons for rejecting our beliefs no matter what, but let’s make sure we do our part to help them reject and criticize for the right reasons. Let them take on our best apologetics, not these side shows.

In short, if you are reading this and your conversion is strongly supported by any tabloid support for Christianity such as this, please, please, please, rethink your faith. I would rather have you not believe having looked at good evidences for Christianity, than to have a believe built upon this type of manipulated sensationalism. More than likely, most (if not all) of these types of things are going to fall apart.

Most Christians are not too critical when it comes to this type of thing. They think that they are supposed to believe it. And I know that this does not only go for Christians. Atheists, Mormons, Muslims, and any other faith-based belief system is going to have those who uncritically use “evidence” that is, in the long run, counter-productive. But I am not talking to them right now. They can use all the pancake apologetics they want. But we (Christians) simply don’t need to. We have enough evidence for our faith to keep up from resorting to such things.