I do not consider myself a Christian, or an atheist. If one were to pigeonhole my own personal philosophy with a label, it might be "weak atheist" or "strong agnostic," because any belief concerning God is completely nonexistent from my mind. However, I don't reject all religion or spirituality out of hand. Religion and spirituality are an integral part of our humanity. Along with the artistic and intellectual sides of people, they balance our being. The quote by Einstein at the end of my chapter 3 commentary captures the essence of how I feel about religion.
When I began reading Why I Believe, I developed a genuine great respect for the author. I was initially quite impressed with Dr. Kennedy's intelligence and thoughtfulness. I could understand why a Christian might enjoy his ministry. However, my respect evaporated as I began my quest for further knowledge concerning the subjects on which his book speaks. In this series of essays I discovered some good things in the book, but I have also shown that it overflows with half-truths, misrepresentations, distortions, twisted facts, and outright lies. After researching what Kennedy did not say, I now feel a moral obligation to point out that he appears to be a man whose sources of historical information are unreliable, whose selective pleading cannot be trusted, and who will even lie to promote his religion. I should add that there are many honest Christians who do not make false claims about their faith. One such example I discovered in my search is author Lloyd J. Averill, Professor of Theology and Preaching at Northwest Theological Union in Seattle.
The particular metaphysics of Christianity, whether described in the Bible or elsewhere, is especially suspect in the hands of the kind of Christian who seeks moral absolutism, political authority, and control over other people. Then, Christianity becomes politically partisan and generally dangerous, and its spirituality gets sapped and replaced by an agenda of power. In my view, such Christians are not well-balanced, neither intellectuality nor with their regard for others. D. James Kennedy appears to fit this description.
Is Dr. Kennedy merely ignorant but well-meaning, or is he intentionally deceptive? Regardless of his motivations, I am saddened that many innocent trusting Christians will read his book and accept blindly its contents as fact. Basing your beliefs on such shaky foundations leaves you open to spiritual destruction! If Satan exists at all, he'd probably appreciate this book.
In The Screwtape Letters, C. S. Lewis pointed out that it is on the very altar of God where true believers are most susceptible to Satan. All of the literary stories about the Devil portray him as handsome and smooth-talking, and the people who are blindest to him, to whom he appeals the most, are the most sanctimonious, self-righteous, and self-assured - the leaders of the church!
After all my research, I now believe I have managed to unmask evil masquerading as good. D. James Kennedy, in my mind, is exactly the sort of False Teacher that honest Christians everywhere should rise up against.
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