I understand you’re trying to address three different people so I can understand the difficulty in doing so. There are a hundred things I could ask you from what you said but I want to ask you, from what you said, how you know god directly, and personally, and propositionally that you know things about him. This is the most interesting of any of the claims you have made…that you know him personally and directly. Ed, if you do you should know certain things about him like his favorite color, does he like pasta, who is his favorite football team? Ask him why he doesn’t talk to me? Ask him why he remains hidden? Ask him why he gave eagles better eye sight and cheetahs faster legs? Ask him why he gave everything the appearance of age and that it evolved so as to make the belief around creation not only questionable but unlikely. If you know him Ed and you have him on speed dial please ask him these things.
My Response below:
I have come to personal knowledge of God not by any actions I have taken but rather by the actions that God has taken. It is by regeneration of the heart through the work of the Holy Spirit that Christians come to know God. We know Him not only as our Creator and Savior, but we know Him as our Father and our helper. We have experienced what it is to know God analogously to how you experience another person. How do you know your best friend? Do you think you could convince me he exists without me experiencing him if I really didn’t want to believe it. And even if you introduced me, I could always say that you met him 5 minutes ago and he is not really your best friend. There is not enough evidence available for you to persuade me if I really don’t want to believe it and if I really want to insist of my proofs.
God does not have a favorite color.
God is immaterial and does not eat.
The Browns is God’s favorite football team. He likes underdogs.
God said he has spoken to you but you keep ignoring him.
God hides from you because you despise him. But he has given you all you need to love him, to honor him, to submit to and trust him.
God said that his purpose for eagles and cheetahs were none of your business.
God said he didn’t give things the appearance of age.
God said it is your own assumptions about how the universe came to be what it is that causes you to think God must have given it the appearance of age. God said that he created Adam, but that your assumption that it would have taken 25 years for Adam to have grown from a baby to his created state is the real problem.
God wants to know why you keep blaming him for your own faulty assumptions. He doesn’t think it’s fair. God thinks you should adjust your assumptions to fit with His Word.
God has some questions for you Stevie. Are you willing to answer them?
Who is this that darkens counsel By words without knowledge?
“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Who determined its measurements—surely you know!
“Have you commanded the morning since your days began, and caused the dawn to know its place, Have the gates of death been revealed to you, or have you seen the gates of deep darkness?
Do you know the ordinances of the heavens?
Can you establish their rule on the earth?
“Can you lift up your voice to the clouds, that a flood of waters may cover you?
Can you send forth lightnings, that they may go and say to you, ‘Here we are’?
Who has put wisdom in the inward parts or given understanding to the mind?
“Shall a faultfinder contend with the Almighty?
He who argues with God, let him answer it.”
Will you even put me in the wrong?
Will you condemn me that you may be in the right?
Have you an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like his?
Here is some advice Stevie; answer something like this:
I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
‘Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?’
Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know. ‘Hear, and I will speak; I will question you, and you make it known to me.’
I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you; therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”
Remember Stevie: It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
Christian belief is immediate; it is formed in the basic way. [Plantinga] Christian belief is not the conclusion of an argument based on evidences or backing. Christian experience of the sort spoken of in Scripture is immediately warranted because it is the experience of God acting on the person.