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The Alex McFarland Show-69-Disbelief: A Matter of the Heart with guest Jay Seegert

Alex McFarland Show / Alex McFarland
The Truth Network Radio
August 3, 2023 12:00 pm

The Alex McFarland Show-69-Disbelief: A Matter of the Heart with guest Jay Seegert

Alex McFarland Show / Alex McFarland

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August 3, 2023 12:00 pm

When sharing the gospel message with an atheist, it’s not uncommon to be met with pushback from an individual who claims to believe in science, not faith. The irony is, however, that the science almost always points back to God and the rest often varies, depending on the agenda of the scientist behind it. With a worldview that’s easily deflated by facts, why aren’t atheists easily convinced of ultimate truth? On today’s episode of the Alex McFarland Show, Alex is joined by fellow apologist, Jay Seegert. Jay explains why the issue of disbelief is often a matter of the heart, not facts or apologetics. With that in mind, Jay equips listeners with tools to share their faith in a way that’s more impactful. 

Alex McFarland

The Starting Point Project

The Institute for Creation Research 

The Assault on America 

Equip Retreat

Truth and Liberty Coalition 

alex@alexmcfarland.com

booking@alexmcfarland.com


Books Mentioned: 

What is Creation Science?

Scientific Creationism 

Evidence That Demands a Verdict

The Early Earth 

The Genesis Flood 

Henry Morris KJV Study Bible 



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The spiritual condition of America, politics, culture, and current events, analyzed through the lens of Scripture. Welcome to the Alex McFarland Show. Have you ever shared your Christian faith, and someone will give an objection by saying, Well, I believe in science. I don't believe in faith.

I believe in science. Hi, Alex McFarland here, and I'm so excited about the guest that we're going to converse with here in a moment. His name is Jay Seigert, and he and I are speaking this week at a youth camp, well, a large Bible conference that contains one of our youth camps in Iowa, and we're having a great week.

We're in front of probably a couple of thousand adults in the adult sessions. I've had the honor of speaking, sharing the stage where people like Haddon Robinson and Erwin Lutzer and Josh McDowell have spoken, and I am very honored to be speaking this week. And then we've got a youth camp, one of our summer camps that we deal with apologetics and biblical worldview. And one of the speakers I met yesterday, Jay Seigert, I just wanted to converse with him a little bit.

He's dynamic. God is using him to equip young people to defend their Christian faith, and we'll talk a little bit about apologetics and science. So Jay, thank you so much for being with us on the program, and I want to hear what you have to say about apologetics and defending the faith. Well, it's a great, great topic, and I've morphed over the years, and my wife has helped me greatly connect with people.

She said only about 70 percent of people like lectures, so I've morphed from just lecturing and being a fax machine, spewing out fax to really kind of connecting people in real life. So one thing she's helped me with is affirming people. So when a skeptic says something, I first try to find something very positive.

I told one Satanist that I said, I think you think more deeply than most Christians that I know, because the questions you're asking are great questions. So try to affirm people. I also ask for clarification. Like in this case, you know, they believe in science. They say, tell me more about that. What do you mean?

When you say that, what do you actually mean by that? And if I have enough time, I would go further and say, let them know that science that they believe in actually only makes sense within a theistic worldview, that we can't really even have a basis for doing science if there really is no God. So I would start with that. Now, your background is engineering, right? Engineering and physics, actually, yep.

So tell us about that. When you were going through your physics and engineering education, I mean, were you a believer at that point? Yeah, I placed my trust in Christ when I was five years old, grew up in a great biblical worldview household and church, went to a Christian college and John Brown University in Arkansas to study mechanical engineering, got a degree. But then I became more interested in physics.

They didn't have a physics major. So I left Arkansas, went back to Wisconsin, where I'm from, went to a state university to get my degree in physics. And that's when my world changed because all my professors were telling me I was wrong about everything that I believed and realized for the first time in my life I know what I believe, I just don't know why. I couldn't defend the Christian worldview, so God put it in my heart to start looking into things.

So I've been looking into things for 38 years. Who were some of the first apologetics writers or speakers that had an influence in your life? Well, certainly at the time, because my professors were challenging me regarding creation and evolution studying physics, the Institute for Creation Research, Henry Morris, Duane Gish, you know, I devoured two books. A friend of mine loaned me two books. I read them cover to cover. That got me started. What is Creation Science and Scientific Creationism back in the mid-'80s.

And then also, obviously, Josh McDowell and Evidence that Demands a Verdict, the first version. He came out with that book. I also read that cover to cover, and that just really got me fired up in my faith. Did you ever come across the book—because, Jay, this really takes me back as well to the 80s.

I became a Christian when I was 21, and I well remember the early to mid-'80s. Josh was huge. Josh McDowell, he's been on our program many times.

I had the privilege of meeting Duane T. Gish, one of the great leaders of creation versus evolution. Brilliant guy. Here's a book. Does this ring a bell? The Early Earth by John Whitcomb.

Oh, yeah. I met John Whitcomb, too. In fact, I saw him speak when he was probably in his mid-upper 80s, and I was so impressed with how slow and calm he was. I thought, this guy knows so much, but he doesn't feel he needs to get everything out in this particular sermon.

So brilliant. Yeah, I also read The Early Earth and The Genesis Flood as well. You know, folks, I've got to say—and if you're just tuning in, we're talking with Jay Seigert.

He's a keynote speaker, an engineer, physicist, the Starting Point Project. Plus, he's collaborating with us this summer in our youth apologetics camps. And folks, you know, I never recommend a book that I myself have not read at least once.

That's our rule around here. We recommend a lot of books, but I never recommend a book that I haven't read at least once. Folks, in the strongest possible terms, I would urge you to get The Apologetics Study Bible with Notes by Henry Morris. There are so many good verse-by-verse notes, but then there are many, many appendices—the plural of appendix, appendices—on the fruits of an evolutionary worldview versus the fruits of a theistic Christian worldview. But Jay, you're really taking me back to when I was first getting into apologetics, because I read those books The Genesis Flood by Henry Morris.

Then a number of other apologists like Ken Boa, and then of course Ken Ham came along. All of that to say this, for the person that wants to defend their faith, whether it's, does God exist? How do I reconcile what Genesis 1 through 11 says with what I heard in high school science class growing up?

What about Jesus, the resurrection? Jay, you've been in the apologetics field a long time, so have I. I would say we're living in the golden age of apologetics. The evidence is compelling. There's so many great writers. In the 80s, whereas if you went to the bookstore, you might have had a dozen book choices, today there are literally hundreds, and there are good books. Despite the challenges, we're living in a great time to do ministry, aren't we?

We really are. It's really not about the evidence, and that's one thing I've learned in 38 years of speaking. The evidence is fine, but we're really dealing with a heart issue, and that's one of the main points that I try to get across to parents, because in a nutshell, I'll give a talk. I'll talk about the myriads of Christian youth walking away from their faith before they leave college. Parents come up to me, and they say, that was my son, that was my daughter, a little Billy walked away from his faith. You grew up in our home, and you went off to college, comes back an atheist, and they say, can you help them? What they mean is, can you tell them what you just told us about DNA, and then he'll want to go back to church and worship Jesus. And they're generally missing the point. It's not an academic issue.

It's a heart issue. Many things were going on before he got to college. College isn't terrible.

It's usually the environment where problems get exposed that had been developing for years. So I try to get the parents to realize that they need to kind of up their game a bit in their relationship with Christ themselves, and then in their relationship with their children. The apologetics are fine, but it's really rare that these kids are walking away simply because of academics. Brother, you hit the nail on the head, and I really don't know another apologist that I've heard say that as clearly. It really is a heart issue, because creationists and atheists have the same evidence. I mean, we all have the same witness of creation and conscience and scripture and Savior. The question is, am I going to let the Lord rule my life, or am I, as an individual and a fallen sinner at that, going to call the shots? Are we going to submit to God, or do we want to try to be our own God?

It is a heart issue. Stay tuned, folks. We're going to come back more with Jay Seigert. The reasonableness, in fact, the relevancy and urgency of the Christian faith.

Don't go away. We're back after this break. Fox News and CNN call Alex McFarland a religion and culture expert.

Stay tuned for more of his teaching and commentary after this. In recent years, our nation has suffered greatly, and we seem to be on a rapid moral decline. We've rejected God, morality, and we've almost completely lost our sense of patriotism. It's no wonder that many are asking the question, is this the end of America? Hi, Alex McFarland here, and I want to make you aware of my book, The Assault on America, How to Defend Our Nation Before It's Too Late.

You know, our nation has seen politicians that are corrupted by greed, and they've got a vested interest in power, and many of our elected officials seem to care little about the country that they've been appointed to serve. Read my book, The Assault on America. We can stand up for our great nation and defend America before it's too late.

It's available everywhere. You can learn more on my own website, which is alexmcfarland.com. Read the book, The Assault on America, How to Defend Our Nation Before It's Too Late. He's been called trusted, truthful, and timely. Welcome back to The Alex McFarland Show. Well, welcome back to the program and my very special guest, Jay Seigert. Jay and I are speaking to teens this week in Iowa. This is our fifth of seven youth camps this summer.

And folks, by the time you hear this, the summer of 2023 will be somewhat ebbing to a close, but the website, equipretreat.org, equipretreat.org. By the time summer is over, we will have been, in addition to our other speaking tour, The Cove and so many conferences around the country, but in terms of our seven youth camps, we will have been in front of 1,250 teens this summer. And folks, let me encourage you, young people do care about truth. Young people are responding to the Gospel. Every city we're in, we're seeing people get saved. Even like here in Iowa this week, praying with 60-year-olds who want to make sure that they know Christ. And so folks, your prayers and your financial support are enabling us to take the Gospel and, as I say, evangelize the lost and equip the saved. We're trying to woke-proof America's teens. So if you would consider helping us, a tax-deductible gift you can give at my own website, which is alexmcfarland.com.

Securely, we've never had a data breach. By God's grace, I don't think we ever will. alexmcfarland.com, or you can mail a contribution to simply TNG, as in Truth for a New Generation, P.O.

Box 485, Pleasant Garden, North Carolina, 27313. Well Jay, let's talk about, before the break, we mentioned a heart issue. There's a famous quote by Thomas Nagel. I don't know if you've seen Nagel.

He's at, I believe, New York University. And my friend Gary Habermas debated him. Nagel says this, and this is a quote. He said, it's not that I don't believe in God, and naturally I hope I'm true. It's that I don't want there to be a God.

I don't want the world to be that way, said Nagel. He said, and I'm bothered by the fact that some of the most brilliant people I know are deeply convicted religious believers. He said, I don't believe in God, and I hope I'm right.

Wow, what a risky, foolish, reckless hope. He says, but I don't want the universe to be that way. I've debated atheists, so have you. It truly is an issue of the heart, isn't it?

It is. It's really interesting, and that's why when we throw apologetics at things, you know, like I mentioned, if the only tool you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. And you can't fix everything by just giving facts, because these people don't want those things to be true. So the more you share evidence, the more upset they will get, because they don't want these things to be true. They're not looking for the answer. So I think the best thing we can do at that point, it's interesting, nowhere in the Bible does it promise us.

If we can tell people about the complexities of DNA, that's going to change their mind, say, oh, I didn't know that. Let me go to church and worship Jesus. But the Bible does promise us that when we share Scripture, it will never return void. Isaiah 55, 11, God's word will never return void.

It will always accomplish what he wants. And the way I see that is when we actually share Scripture, it will either be used to convict and convert them, which is what God wants, but he won't force that, or it will be used to condemn them. They heard the truth, but they themselves chose to reject it.

It's just up to us to share that truth. And so we need to sometimes back off a little bit with the apologetics, especially through prayer. God might say, this isn't going to change your mind. Share Scripture, even though they say, well, I don't believe that, say, I understand that.

It's still true, and it's still powerful. I want you to have an accurate understanding of what the Bible actually claims for itself rather than what someone else told you about it. You know, I'm glad you brought up the Isaiah 55, 11 verse, because God's word does not return void. There's a lot in the Bible about reasoning. Isaiah 1, 18, come now, let us reason.

And Acts 9, 22, and in Acts 17, Paul reasoned and argued and alleged that Jesus is the Christ. But while we humans are rational creatures, it's interesting, we can think rationally, but we only do it on a selective basis, don't we? I mean, we want to justify ourselves and somehow give ourselves a pass whereby we don't have to repent and turn to God. But that's faulty thinking, not to mention spiritually detrimental, isn't it?

It really is. And when I'm talking to skeptics, before I jump in trying to defend what I believe, I ask them questions. They usually will make truth claims. So I ask them to clarify that.

What do you mean by that? And then how did you come to that conclusion, and why are you confident in that? And sometimes I'll ask them, what makes more sense, that if you were to die and stand before God, he would judge you based on whatever standard you came up with, or would he judge you on his own standard? Every single person is admitted, what makes more sense, he would use his own standard.

I said, well, that's pretty important for us to know what that standard is. But many of the skeptics, it's a spiritual issue. They are spiritually deluded. Lawrence Krauss, one of the leading theoretical physicists today, he has to explain the origin of the universe. He doesn't believe in God. So when he talks about getting the universe out of nothing, this is what he said. When people think about nothing, they typically think of the absence of anything.

That makes sense. But that's a philosophical definition. He goes, I don't care what philosophers think about nothing. I care about the nothing of reality. And if the nothing of reality is filled with stuff, I'm going with that. So here's a leading theoretical physicist, brilliant scientist saying something that makes no sense whatsoever, because it's ultimately a spiritual issue. Well, you know, his definition of nothing violates the law of non-contradiction, that A is not non-A. Now, folks, hang with us. If you think we're just talking about a bunch of semantical gobbledygook, no, Jay and I are trying to handle the fabric of reality, really.

You know, it's interesting. I believe in a non-theistic world. In other words, in a world where there was no God, we would not have mathematics or logic. So A is not non-A. In other words, something can't, at the same time, be its absolute opposite.

That would be a contradiction. So by this gentleman's definition, if nothing is filled with stuff, it's not nothing. It's time, space, and matter, isn't it? It is.

It's a huge problem. And Stephen Hawking had the same problem with getting something out of nothing. He said the way you get something out of nothing is because there is a law such as gravity, because of that, the universe can and will create itself out of nothing.

It's like, wait a minute. If you have something, you don't have nothing. And the something you mentioned was a law of gravity.

And what is that? It's not even a physical thing. It's a description of how the universe operates. But you can't have a description of how the universe operates unless you have a universe.

But if you have a universe, you're not creating it out of nothing. Did you ever read the first edition? This was back in, I'm pretty sure, 1988. The first edition of A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking. Any quotes and sections of it, but not cover to cover.

I remember I was in a store, and it had just come out, and I read it. And he said in the first edition that what was prior to the singularity, in other words, this infinitely dense point of matter and energy that banged out, he said, whatever was the causal agent, some say God, but there had to be something beyond time and space and matter. And for lack of a better word, the uncaused cause, God. In subsequent editions, he changed that. And I would say, just like Einstein and his fudge factor, Einstein showed that he wasn't the purely logical entity he wanted to present in the public.

He had an ideology, and that was to live and believe without God. Stay tuned, folks. We're going to come back for segment three with Jay Seigert.

Jay Seigert's website is thestartingpointproject.com. We're back with more after this. Fox News and CNN call Alex McFarland a religion and culture expert.

Stay tuned for more of his teaching and commentary after this. Are you tired of liberal agendas ruining our country, but you don't know what to do about it? That's why Truth and Liberty Coalition was founded. We want to equip you to take back our country and impact the world. Here's how we do it. We educate through broadcasts, conferences, and our website with resources that inform, equip, and motivate. We unify by collaborating with like-minded organizations like the Family Research Council, the Family Policy Alliance, and My Faith Votes. We mobilize by providing practical tools you can use to impact your local community.

As Christians, we are called to make disciples of nations. Together, we can change the course of our country for good. Join Truth and Liberty to connect with believers and organizations who not only want to see a change in our nation, but a community that is actually doing something about it. Join us online for our broadcast and subscribe for relevant updates on our website, truthandliberty.net. He's been called trusted, truthful, and timely. Welcome back to The Alex McFarland Show. Welcome back to the program. Alex McFarland here, you know, as I'm talking with Jay Seigert. The gospel is definitely a heart issue.

C.S. Lewis, one of the great Christian defenders of the 20th century, he was writing some commentary on the Beatitudes, blessed are the peacemakers. And in Matthew 5 through 7 in the Beatitudes, C.S. Lewis made this comment where the Lord said, blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

And Lewis observed, will only the pure in heart want to see God? Welcome back. We're talking with Jay Seigert. And Jay, I'm like you, I love data. I love information. I want to know everything about everything. I love math and history and science to the degree that I am able to understand it.

But honestly, there are really two kinds of people, those that want the Lord in their life and those that don't. Is that a fair summary? Yeah, it's a pretty good categorization. And generally, it's obviously not an academic issue because if it was, all scientists who studied certain areas, they would all agree. And they'd think one thing, and anyone who didn't know science, maybe they'd have a different opinion. You have some of the world's leading scientists who are atheists. You also have some of the world's leading scientists who are very devout Christians and everywhere in between. It's not, again, just an academic issue.

It is a heart issue. The heart will drive you towards finding evidence for those things or skewing away from that. It's a worldview thing. People talk about science, but it's not really about those scientific facts. It's about what are you using to interpret those facts because facts don't speak for themselves. That's why we're the Starting Point Project.

Christians have a starting point that they believe that God exists and the Bible says word. And we use that foundation to interpret everything else, including what science and logic are, history, philosophy, ethics, and morality. There's a myth that science is settled, whether it's evolution, natural selection, climate change, the origins of the COVID virus. I mean, isn't there this public generalization that science, this entity, science, has spoken? Science is anything but settled on a myriad of issues.

Would you agree? Oh, definitely. We just have a two-part video series we put up on our website recently called The Myth of Settled Science. In the first part, I go through some general principles about science. In the second part, we apply then that to two non-controversial issues like COVID and climate change.

Oh, yeah. No controversy there at all. But science is not black and white. People think that, well, scientists, they just go into the laboratory and they come out and say, we're sorry.

This is what it is. There's nothing we can do. No, science is very colorful and there's a lot of interpretation going on there. That's why their ideas change over time. But it's used as a club to bully us into submission saying, if you don't believe what we're saying and you don't do what we're telling you to do, you obviously don't believe in science and you don't even care about others that, you know, if you're not wearing triple mask, you know, you don't care that people are dying. So we're shamed into doing whatever they tell us that we need to be doing. And the time for debate is over, they tell us. It's been settled, been there, done that.

So just do what we're telling you to do. And in my talk, I go through nine different examples of how science is used as a club to get you to beat you into submission when the science is far from being settled. You know, when COVID came out, by the way, I had three different medical doctors that listened to me on the radio who called early in the COVID game and said, Alex, you don't know me, I'm a medical doctor, but please don't use my name, but I don't want you to take the vaccine.

And I felt led to call you. I was on a debate on Fox News with a black pastor. I'm sure he loves the Lord, I don't dispute that, but just a very foolish person. And he said, and I quote, he said, you don't take the vaccine because you want folks that look like me to die.

You know, when you hear a nonsensical statement like that, you don't even know where to start. Let me say this. Scientists, although they are very fluid all over the map, they're not coolly rational, they've got an agenda, but science and scientists, science has become the new religion and scientists have become the new clergy almost. Would you agree?

Yes. I mean, most people, again, are intimidated by science in general, and they think these guys are experts. And the thing is the PhD scientists, they're generally very brilliant in their sliver of the universe. They know a lot in their area.

They generally know very little outside of that. And one of my, my, uh, mentors, Dr. John Sanford from Cornell university, he's famous for having invented the gene gun. He was an atheist for most of his life. He founded a group called logos research associates. It's the world's largest consortium of scientists or Christians and creationists. I've been on the board for 10 years.

Last November, they asked me to step up and be president. So it's just a great group of guys, but he told me, do not be intimidated by all these other PhD scientists because they know a lot in the area, but they said, you know, much more about the big picture than they will ever know. Again, they're smart people, but the Bible says there's a big difference between intelligence and wisdom. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. A lot of these scientists, they don't fear God a lot of them don't even believe in God. Well, you know, when it comes to even things like history, one of the greatest historians of the last half millennia, Will Durant, he won the presidential medal of freedom.

His, either, depending on which edition you buy, either 12 or 24 volume set on the history of civilization has been called one of the most important works of history in history. And many of the atheists that I've debated have never even heard of Will Durant and that can wax eloquent on the subject in their lane. And I respect that, but a general knowledge base outside of their tiny little corner of the universe, you know, and heaven forbid things like C.S. Lewis or Aquinas or Augustine and the great rich arguments for God, truth, preservation of the Bible, the historical evidence for the resurrection, all of these compelling lines of evidence that yield us to conclude that Christianity is true and God is knowable. I've yet to meet an atheist that really outside of his flavor of atheism, they're not conversant on all of these things that are important pieces of knowledge to bring to the table if indeed you are sincerely in search of truth. That's what I've found that a lot of these skeptics will have heard arguments against Christianity that sound good to them and they meet a Christian and I call it the Trump card not President Trump puts a Trump card. They pull it out and it works very well. Then they run into a Christian who actually has responses to all those and they don't know what to do with it like a deer in the headlights because this has never happened before.

It always works. And so they either change the subject or they head for the hills. I even asked all my professors when I was getting my degree in physics if they could give me evidence like I just said innocently, what are some of the best evidences for evolution?

I didn't get one single response from about four or five different professors, even the biology professors. I'm not saying that there's no one on the planet who would share something but most don't. They hide behind the cloak that while someone's discovered it, it's out there, it's good. Now I don't know what it is.

I don't need to. They've already proven that. It's settled science. So they themselves are exercising great faith and it's actually a blind faith. So what do we do? To the people listening, Jay, or for the people listening that are believers and they're overwhelmed, they're like, I can't read all of these books. I'm a Christian. I care about my neighbor.

I want to be a witness effectively. Give us some advice. Really quick in a nutshell. The world's always been getting slowly worse morally. A few years ago the wheels fell off.

It's crazy. Bad news is we can't fix it. Good news is God's not asking us to fix COVID, climate change, transgenderism, gay marriage, wokeism, cancel culture, nothing. He's asking us to share the gospel with those around us.

So the quick answer is you don't need to have all the facts in your head. Just know you can trust the Bible from cover to cover, be praying for opportunities that God has people across your path that he wants you to share the gospel with, knowing that if they bring up tough questions, answers exist even if you don't have them off the top of your head. You can always get back to the people. But go out there to share the gospel knowing you can trust the Bible. Wow.

Well, Jay Seigert of the Starting Point Project website, thestartingpointproject.com, I want to thank you for being with us today. And folks, let me encourage you. We often share this, 2 Peter 1, 16-21, regarding the gospel, the death, burial, the resurrection of Jesus for the sins of the world.

We have not followed cleverly devised fables. It's real. Jesus is risen, and he's as close by as a prayer. I hope you're committed to make him known, and I hope that you do know him personally. If we can help you in any way on my website, which is alexmcfarland.com, there's a tab, What Does God Say About My Relationship With Him? If we can help you come to Christ, help you come back to Christ, help you stand strong for Jesus Christ, it's our honor to do that. May God bless you and stand strong for truth. Alex McFarland Ministries are made possible through the prayers and financial support of partners like you.

For over 20 years, this ministry has been bringing individuals into a personal relationship with Christ and has been equipping people to stand strong for truth. Learn more and donate securely online at alexmcfarland.com. You may also reach us at Alex McFarland, P.O. Box 10231, Greensboro, North Carolina 27404. Or by calling 1-877-Yes-God-1. That's 1-877-Y-E-S-G-O-D-1. Thanks for joining us. We'll see you again on the next edition of the Alex McFarland Show. Alex McFarland, P.O. Box 10231, Greensboro, North Carolina 28 dialect.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-08-08 07:54:38 / 2023-08-08 08:07:19 / 13

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