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“Pete and Repeat”

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by John Lowe
January 29, 2008

One thing that never ceases to amaze me is the level hypocrisy that many enemies of Christianity espouse.  For instance, when discussing the Bible, sharing the Gospel or debating the proofs for Christianity I am often met with accusations (implied or plainly said) that I am only repeating what I have been told to believe. More specifically, the implication is that I am only believing what I was taught as a child and have never considered the fact that I could be wrong.  I am simply repeating what the preacher tells me to say because as a Christian I am a mind-numbed robot that never challenges his religions own assumptions.  The fact is I have challenged every premise and claim of the Christian faith and it is the very reason my passion for proclaiming and defending the message and claims of the Bible is so strong.
Before I go further I want to acknowledge that there are indeed many Christians who are so “in name only”.  I also acknowledge that many Christians do indeed only believe the Bible because it’s what they were taught as a child.  There are many who have never sought to not only know what they claim to believe… but more importantly why they should.
Now let me share a little “secret” with you… this phenomenon is found in ALL beliefs.  Most folks, whether Christian, Muslim, Hindu, et al and yes, even atheists are simply repeating arguments that they have heard without challenging any assumptions of those beliefs (“towing the party line” if you will).
For instance… in almost every encounter with Muslims that I have I am accused of only believing Christianity because I grew up in America.  Never mind how far from the truth this is… in fact is has been 100% of the time in my experience that THEY are the ones doing that very thing!!!  Recently this happened again… the person who made the accusation had never even picked up a Bible.  He did not even know what the Gospels were!!!  Much less that there are 4 of them.  In contrast I have read the Quran, parts of the Haddith and many books on Islam from Muslim and non-Muslim authors (In fact, in many cases talking with Muslims I find out I know more about their religion than they do).  Now, who is the one that is simply repeating arguments without examining his own claims? It is laughable and down right pathetic how many Muslims who make claims about the Bible yet they don’t even know what’s in it!!!  There is only one explanation for this… They are simply repeating, without examining the claims, what the leaders TELL THEM TO THINK about the Bible. Accusing me of blindly accepting my beliefs yet guilty of this themselves.
Another group I run into this issue with are Atheists.  The modern and lofty-minded Atheist is too enlightened to believe in anything other than what he can see and looks down upon religionists as silly and ignorant.  Yet again… in almost every case, not an original thought is among the arguments brought against me.  All I hear are the tired arguments from Atheists of the 18th and 19th centuries being regurgitated but presented in the present as something new and more intellectual.  Recently I was told by an Atheist that King James had changed the Bible when he translated it.  Was this an accusation based on historical proofs that this person had studied to ensure their accuracy?  NO!  Again, he was simply repeating what he had been told to believe about the Bible and never challenged it to see if it was true.  It would have taken him 2.5 seconds of research to realize that King James did not translate the Bible… a group of scholars did (About 47 in all if I remember correctly).  Next, I challenged him to demonstrate where in the Bible King James had made this change.  “Well”, he said, “there’s this one place where the word translated this really means that”. Then I answered, “really, can you show me where that’s at in the Bible?”  “While you are at it can you also show me in the Greek how and where King James got it wrong?”  As suspected he couldn’t remember where the verse was (of course) and naturally he wouldn’t know Greek if it slapped him in the face.  So obviously he would not be able to demonstrate how the word was mistranslated by King James for ulterior motives.  Let’s do the math… the Atheist comes to me accusing me of believing the Bible purely on blind faith without a shred of evidence yet he is one believing things without knowing any evidence of the claims he is REPEATING.  WOW!!!  How intellectual.  In contrast I have spent many hours examining the arguments for Atheism, reading authors such as Thomas Huxley, et al, in addition to many of their arguments against the Bible.  I do this for several reasons and one of them is to understand and accurately reflect the beliefs of those I am debating with.  So who’s Pete?  And who is Repeat?
The conclusion?  While Christians seem to get the blame for this… MOST people only know and repeat what they have learned and been told without challenge. This goes for every religion, belief, philosophy, et al. The Bible is clear that the heart of man is deceitful and wicked… and that we are sinners hopelessly dead in our sins without Christ. It also maintains that anyone who seeks, finds.  The truth is there for the taking for all who will believe. Unfortunately, what people believe, in most cases, is what they WANT to believe and simply repeat arguments that seemingly justify their position.    What are your thoughts on this article?