Q. By faith, I am a believer as you know. There is a guy who frequently posts on a forum I belong to that history says the Gospels were not written by the authors listed (Mathew, Mark, etc) and continues to bash me and others who discuss Biblical research and facts, claiming that “real world” history proves otherwise. I was hoping you could point me in a direction outside the apologetics world for facts to dispute his claims, knowing you have far more knowledge on this than I do. Any help you could provide would be greatly appreciated.
A. The “real world” history this person is talking about must have been written by people trying to prove the Bible wrong, because the authorship of the Gospels is pretty well documented. We have to decide whether to take their word for what happened in the past, or believe the Word of God.
People like Josh MacDowell, Simon Greenleaf, and CS Lewis all started out as unbelievers trying to prove the Bible wrong, but their studies led them to change their minds and become part of the “apologetics world.” It’s happened countless times.
The evidence is there for any one who wants to examine it and can be easily confirmed. I’d advise you to let this go and move on. All the facts in the world won’t force someone who has his mind made up like this to change it, because his decision is based in emotion, not logic.
Psalm 14 begins, “The fool says in his heart, there is no God.” Even a fool can’t say that logically, with his intellect, because the evidence to the contrary is overwhelming (Romans 1:18-20). So he has to say it emotionally, with his heart, as if denying God’s existence will make it so.
It’s very difficult to successfully use logic against an emotional position. The best thing to do is pray that God will soften the person’s heart, like He has done for so many other non-believers who sincerely studied His word, even when they began as skeptics determined to prove it wrong.