Book Review: Jesus on Trial

JesusOnTrialby Tim Jones1/17/15
David Limbaugh Makes His Case for the Existence of God  •  David Limbaugh, the brother of conservative talk-show host Rush Limbaugh, writes in his book, Jesus on Trial: A Lawyer Affirms the Truth of the Gospel, what I believe to be one of the most articulate arguments for the existence of God and for an absolute standard of morality that does exists outside of mankind.

Below are three paragraphs I’ve transcribed from the book (pages 272 and 273) where he makes his case, including the powerful argument that the existence of evil actually helps prove the existence of God and and an absolute standard of morality.

THE MORAL ARGUMENT

The moral argument (the moral law states)

1. Every law has a lawgiver.
2. There is a moral law.
3. Therefore, there is a moral lawgiver.

The first premise is self-evident: every law must have a lawgiver or it wouldn’t be a law. The second premise assumes our experience or it wouldn’t be a law. The second premise assumes our experience teaches us that all people have a fundamental sense of right and wrong that corresponds to an objective standard beyond humanity. If there is a moral law, there surely must be a moral lawgiver. As noted earlier, a prominent group of atheist intellectuals known as the “new atheist” strongly disputes that the existence of moral law necessarily implies a moral lawgiver. They seem to believe that mortals somehow bootstrapped their way into possessing moral consciences.While people can certainly invent their own moral codes, unless there is an objective standard beyond humanity, then everything is just a matter of human opinion. Without God, there’s no way to justify that Hitler was evil, or that the behavior of Mother Teresa was better than Hitler’s.

One of the chief stumbling blocks to faith is the existence of evil and suffering in the world. Why would an all-powerful, all-loving God permit that? I mentioned this issue previously and will explore it more in Chapter 13, but for now note that this reason for doubt can be turned on itself. Human beings would arguably have no concept of evil, especially in any kind of universal sense, unless a moral standard exists apart from us – that is, uncreated by us. ‘(As an atheist) my argument against God was the the universe seemed so cruel and unjust,’ writes C.S. Lewis, who was an atheist before transforming into one of Christianity’s most effective apologists. ‘But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust?’

Without a moral absolute that is independent of human consciousness, there would be no point of reference and no basis for determining right or wrong. All moral standards, if they existed at all, would be relative, and there would be no authority behind our moral judgments. But anthropological and sociological research shows there is a universal standard of behavior in people that transcends cultures and races. There is a universal recognition of evil and an intrinsic sense of right and wrong.”

As the title indicates, Limbaugh primary focus is on Jesus and in exquisite detail throughout his book he also makes the broader case for the existence of God through the arrival of Jesus through his virgin birth, as God incarnate on earth and his crucifixion and resurrection.

Limbaugh further demonstrates this by pointing out that humans did not find God but rather God disclosed himself to humanity in history by sending his only begotten son to atone for our sins and to follow Him through Jesus Christ. Limbaugh drives home the power of this point by the fact that no other person in history has divided history into two. This is exhibited by every single calendar that exists and therefore time itself is demarcated by the birth of Jesus: A.D. for “Anno Domini” or the ‘Year of our Lord” and B.C. for “before Christ.”

Limbaugh makes the compelling case (not to mention a compelling read) throughout his book by proving the truth of the Gospel that is extremely difficult to dispute. If I were a lawyer and an atheist, I wouldn’t want to go up against him in a court of law if Jesus were put on trial today. • (1782 views)

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8 Responses to Book Review: Jesus on Trial

  1. GHG says:

    A minor nitpick – not all calendars are demarcated by the incarnation of Christ – such as the Chinese calendar. That’s not to dispute the point being made that Jesus is the most pivotal person in history.

  2. Timothy Lane says:

    I’ve been anticipating a review here (I won’t be getting the book until I can buy it at a cheap price, either in paperback or at someplace like Half-Price Books). It sounds like it could indeed be interesting.

    Incidentally, I’m not sure atheists necessarily consider Mother Theresa better than Hitler. After all, as Michael Shermer argued, she was an opponent of population controls (contraception, abortion) despite living in an overpopulated country. Of course, Hitler’s opinion of population control depended on the population being controlled, but I guess that the Shermers of the world consider that better than the orthodox Catholic stance.

  3. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Without a moral absolute that is independent of human consciousness, there would be no point of reference and no basis for determining right or wrong. All moral standards, if they existed at all, would be relative, and there would be no authority behind our moral judgments.

    Thus the reason behind the mantra of “social justice.” If people say it often enough, they seem to think that they can turn it into an entity as solid as God and as guiding as God. That vague idea is their One Commandment that, when parsed by the Wunderkind, becomes various sub-commandments.

    This suits the Left’s modus operandi which is to basically overturn existing structures (using any excuse they can construct) and then putting in its place little but ad hoc renderings of their ill-considered ideology. The purest form of that might be The Reign of Terror in France. In the end, all the Left knows how to do is to deconstruct, to hate, and to destroy, which is why they must try to hide this fact from themselves by constantly referring to everyone else as “the haters” and by using various mascots (homosexuals, “the poor”) as mere puppets to show their supposed moral and intellectual superiority.

    This is certainly why Michael Savage says that liberalism is a mental disorder. That is, of course, more of his usual hyperbole. But he’s captured something with that one. As they say, even a blind chicken can find a grain from time to time.

    As for proving God via any logical argument, I find such attempts fully understandable but ultimately doomed to failure. I think we’re talking about something not easily quantifiable. I would say it’s better to say that moral absolutes suggest a moral law giver. But proof? Well, I say good luck with that.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      When I first saw Savage’s book title, I though it over-the-top. Now I realize he was right all along.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        I think on some subjects, Timothy, he’s very right (Islam comes to mind, for instance). He can speak forth on some subject with seeming inerrancy. But on others I find him hit-and-miss, at best. So like with a lot of people, you gotta take the good with the bad.

  4. Rosalys says:

    Sounds like another book to add to my list!

    Concerning the B.C. and A.D., it’s funny that the “new” way of doing things referring to C.E. (common era) and B.C.E. (before the common era) just happen to correspond to the “old.” They can’t improve on anything. They can only cheat, steal, and eventually destroy.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      Yes, I’ve pointed this out on occasion. Using CE instead of AD (Anno Domini) actually makes a certain amount of sense for non-Christians. But BCE instead of BC (Before Christ) is ridiculous. If it has nothing to do with Christ, then why do they pick that year (granted, Christ was probably born a few years earlier)?

      • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

        They now say BCE is before the common era, but they are still admitting the common era began with Christ. At least the nuts in the French Revolution tried to start the world anew from year 1.

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