I am Put Here for the Defense of the Gospel: Dr. Norman L. Geisler: A Festschrift in His Honor


I Am Put Here for the Defense of the Gospel: Dr. Norman L. Geisler:

A Festschrift in His Honor

Edited by Terry L. Miethe

Pickwick Publishers | 2016

480 pages

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Preface by Ravi Zacharias · xi

Introduction by Terry L. Miethe · xiii

Tributes to Norman L. Geisler

Thanks for the Memories by William E. Nix · xxi

A Tribute to Norman L. Geisler by Patty Tunnicliffe · xxiii

A Personal Story by John Ankerberg · xxvii

Yesterday, Today, and Forever: Personal Reflections on a Favorite Professor

by Timothy Paul Erdel · xxix

A Tribute to Dr. Norman L. Geisler by Mark M. Hanna · xxxii

Personal Experience with Norm by Grant C. Richison · xxxiv

Biographical Reflections about Norm Geisler by Winfried Corduan · xxxv

Norma Turbulenta: “Stormin’ Norman” by Donald T. Williams · xxxvii


chapter 1: Using Apologetics in Contemporary Evangelism by David Geisler · 1

chapter 2: Distinctive Elements of a Judaeo-Christian Worldview by William E. Nix · 22

chapter 3: Our Faith Seeks Their Understanding: Evangelistic-Apologetics & Effective Communication by Ramesh Richard · 57

Biblical Studies

chapter 4: Beware the Impact of Historical Critical Ideologies on Current Evangelical New Testament Studies by F. David Farnell · 76

chapter 5: Building Babel: Genesis 11:1–9 by Thomas Howe · 99

chapter 6: The Task of Bible Exposition by Elliott Johnson · 122

chapter 7: God’s Ultimate Purpose for Creation by Grant C. Richison · 135

chapter 8: Text Versus Word: C. S. Lewis’s View of Inspiration and the Inerrancy of Scripture by Donald T. Williams · 152


chapter 9: Some Features of Finite Being in St. Thomas Aquinas by Winfried Corduan · 169

chapter 10: Unamuno and Quine: A Meta-Philosophical Parable Concerning Faith, Reason, and Truth by Timothy Paul Erdel · 192

chapter 11: Open Theism, Analogy, and Religious Language by Joseph M. Holden · 204

chapter 12: Defending the Handmaid: How Theology Needs Philosophy by Richard G. Howe · 233

chapter 13: Aristotle: God & The Life of Contemplation, or What is Philosophy & Why is it Important? by Terry L. Miethe · 257

chapter 14: The Enlightenment, John Locke & Scottish Common Sense Realism by Terry L. Miethe · 281


chapter 15: Big Data, Big Brother, and Transhumanism by J. Kerby Anderson · 297

chapter 16: Using Expository Preaching to Address Ethical Issues in Our Day by Walter C. Kaiser, Jr. · 307

chapter 17: Moral Absolutes and Moral Worth: A Proposal for Christian Ethics Inspired by Norman Geisler by Richard A. Knopp · 317

chapter 18: A Christian Response to Homosexuality by Patty Tunnicliffe · 346

Other Religions & Cults

chapter 19: Why They Blow Themselves Up: Understanding Islamic Suicide Bombers from a Christian Perspective by John Christian · 370

chapter 20: A Theological and Apologetical Assessment of Positive Confession Theology by Ron Rhodes · 382

Norman L. Geisler’s Impact

chapter 21: The Impact of Norman Geisler on Christian Higher Education by Wayne Detzler · 400

chapter 22: A Detroit Yankee in King Cotton’s Court: Love Expressed in the Thought and Writings of Norman Geisler by Paige Patterson · 417

Tabula Gratulatoria: Testimonials to Dr. Geisler’s Impact on our Time · 427

“Geislerisms” · 431

About Norman L. Geisler · 433


Book Review: Vital Issues in the Inerrancy Debate (2016)

Book Review of Vital Issues in the Inerrancy Debate

Christopher T. Haun[1]

[Click here >> Book Review – Vital Issues in the Inerrancy Debate to open this review as a PDF file.]


Vital Issues in the Inerrancy Debate
Publisher: Wipf & Stock
Date: 2016
General Editor: F. David Farnell
Contributors: F. David Farnell, Norman L. Geisler, Joseph P. Holden, William C. Roach, Phil Fernandes, Robert Wilkin, Paige Patterson, Shawn Nelson, Christopher T. Haun
PAGES: 563


$85.00 (Hardcover), $64.00 (Paperback)[2]

Kindle: $15.00 at Amazon.com


In Kurosawa’s classic film The Seven Samurai, desperate farmers convince veteran warriors to help defend their village and harvest from raiding bandits. Six ronin and one apprentice accept the challenge. After fortifying the village and giving the farmers a crash course in asymmetric warfare, the seven samurai lead the defense when the marauders return. Some of this story line and imagery came to mind as I read Vital Issues in the Inerrancy Debate (VIID) because first and foremost it is a defense.

Twenty-eight of its thirty-two chapters are written by six veteran scholars (holding PhDs in various fields). Four of its chapters are written by two MDiv candidates. In every chapter the authors are, as the preface says, “earnestly contending for the faith delivered once and for all to God’s people.” Every one of its meaty pages defends the traditional, conservative evangelical views of inspiration, inerrancy, and hermeneutics from the destructive use of biblical criticism. By extension they are defending all the propositions in and doctrines derived from the Bible.

VIID is an anthology of some of the best and most recent articles on topics of inerrancy, hermeneutic, and the quest for the historical Jesus. While it does weave in some of the history of the main clashes in the battle for the Bible in the twentieth century—such as the fundamentalist-modernist controversy, Barth and Neo-Orthodoxy, Fuller, Ladd, Rogers, McKim, the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy (ICBI), ETS and Robert Gundry—it doesn’t linger on them. Mainly it offers fresh and intelligent responses to the newest wave of challenges to the Bible offered by evangelicals in books like The Resurrection of Jesus (IVP, 2010), The Lost World of Scripture (IVP, 2013), Ten Guidelines for Evangelical Scholarship (Baker, 2013), Five Views on Biblical Inerrancy (Zondervan, 2013), Can We Still Believe the Bible? (Brazos, 2014), Lost World of Adam and Eve (IVP, 2015), Peter: False Disciple and Apostate According to Saint Matthew (Eerdmans, 2015), and I (Still) Believe (Zondervan, 2015).

Here is a sampling of the many thought-provoking questions which are discussed: How much emphasis should genre be given when doing interpretation? What is the nature of historical narratives? How do hermeneutics and inerrancy interrelate? Are the ideas of the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy still important and relevant? What do the three living framers of the Chicago statements (Sproul, Packer, and Geisler) say about the new hermeneutic and the redefinitions of inerrancy? How do we deal with difficult passages in the Bible? What did the framers of the ICBI statements really mean? Where should one turn to get clarification about the Chicago Statements? Are the academic institutions of the evangelical world failing to learn the lessons of the past? Was the Apostle Matthew an Apostate? Which view has continuity with the early church fathers, Augustine, Aquinas, the Reformers, the writers of the 12-volume The Fundamentals, and the old Princetonians? Is inerrancy just for Calvinists? How early were the gospels really written? Is inerrancy just a peripheral doctrine? Is inerrancy derived from inductive and/or deductive logic? Was Matthew really the only one to mention the raising of the saints in Matthew 27? What do the Church fathers say about Matthew 27? Did any ancient Romans detect the influence of Roman historiography in Matthew 27? Should inerrancy be used as a litmus test of orthodoxy? Are the tools of biblical criticism really neutral? Does purpose or intention determine meaning? What does “truth” really mean? Is an intentionalist view of truth an alternative to the correspondence view of truth? Why did Bart Ehrman drift from fundamentalism to liberalism? What was the conservative resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention? Is there a resurgence of neo-evangelicalism? How does postmodernism fit into all this? Should the story of Adam and Eve be taken literally? Should organizations enforce their doctrinal statements amongst their own members? Does every scholarly evangelical organization lose its grip on inerrancy by the third generation? Should apologists defend both the Faith and the Bible? Should evangelicals send their budding scholars to earn PhDs at schools that specialize in biblical criticism?

VIID is provocative. The most controversial thing about the book is probably its willingness to name the names of many influential men. I’m not just talking about the old rascals like Bacon, Barth, Bart D. Ehrman, Bultmann, Darwin, Descartes, Hobbes, Hume, Kant, Lessing, Perrin, Reimarus, Schweitzer, Spinoza, Strauss, Tillich, Troeltsch, and von Harnack. VIID does mention them. But if focuses more on the also names the names of present and recent scholars, publishers, and bloggers: Ben Meyer, Birger Gerhadsson, Bruce Waltke, Carlos Bovell, Charles Talbert, Christopher Ansberry, Christopher Hays, Christian Smith, Clark Pinnock, Craig Blomberg, Craig Evans, Craig Keener, D. Brent Sandy, Daniel P. Fuller, Daniel Harlow, Daniel Wallace, Darrell Bock, David Capes, David E. Garland, Donald Hagner, Donald K. McKim, Douglas Moo, Edwin Yamauchi, E. P. Sanders, Ernst Wendland, Gary R. Habermas, George Eldon Ladd, Gerd Theissen, Grant R. Osborne, Gregory A. Boyd, H. C. Kee, Heath Thomas, I. Howard Marshall, J. Merrick, J. P. Holding, Jack B. Rogers, James Barr, James Bruckner, James Charlesworth, James Crossley, James D. G. Dunn, Jeremy Evans, James Hamilton, Joel N. Lohr, Joel Watts, John Byron, John R. Franke, John Schneider, John H. Walton, Justin Taylor, Ken Schenck, Kenton Sparks, Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Lee McDonald, Leith Anderson, Leon Morris, Martin Soskice, Matthew Montonini, Michael F. Bird, Michael Green, Michael R. Licona, Moises Silva, Murray Harris, N.T. Wright, Nick Peters, Nijya Gupta, Paul Copan, Paul Jewett, Peter E. Enns, Paul Ricouer, Peter H. Davids, Phillip Long, Richard Burridge, Richard Horsley, Robert H. Gundry, Robert W. Yarborough, Robert Webb, Scot McKnight, Stephen M. Garrett, Thomas Schreiner, Tremper Longman III, W. David Beck, Walter Liefield, William Lane Craig, William Warren, and William Webb. (I probably missed a few!) Many of these men are held in high esteem in by many evangelicals. And yet VIID says that each of these men have in some way and to some degree challenged the parameters delineated by the ICBI in The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy (CSBI, 1978) and The Chicago Statement on Biblical Hermeneutics (CSBH, 1983).

Standing in the watchman tradition of books like The Battle for the Bible (Lindsell, 1976), The Bible in the Balance (Lindsell, 1979), The Jesus Crisis (Thomas and Farnell, 1998), The Jesus Quest (Geisler and Farnell, 2014), and Defending Inerrancy (Geisler and Roach, 2011), an exposé of this scope runs the risk of being accused of fratricide, libel, divisiveness, disunity, faction creating, quarrelsomeness, malice, and nastiness. But really all of its authors do a remarkable job of contending without being contentious. None of the pages were stuck together with drops of venom. With a passionate concern they succeeded in “not be[ing] quarrelsome but . . . correcting his opponents with gentleness” (2 Ti. 2:4) and in “not regard[ing] him as an enemy but warn[ing] him as a brother” (2 Th. 3:15).

There is merit in the maxim “attack the idea, not the man who holds it.” Perhaps the Apostle Paul anticipated this question when he wrote, “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Co. 10:5). Ultimately the good fight of faith is not against people but against opinions and thoughts. But then must the defense always preclude the naming of names? As much as we might all prefer to avoid pointing fingers, it seems unavoidable at times. When specific professors are saying specific things to specific audiences, the defense cannot be sufficiently meaningful (certainly not in any actionable sense) unless specific names are named and their actual words are exposed and evaluated.

Also, in the act of naming names of men spreading ideas they deem corrosive to the orthodox faith, these watchmen are following apostolic precedents. The Apostle John named Cain as the old rascal who should not be imitated (1 Jn. 3:2) and named Diotrephes as the noteworthy contemporary antagonist inside the network of first-century churches. He described Diotrephes as one who does not properly recognize apostolic authority, who spoke “wicked nonsense” against them, and who should not be followed (3 Jn. 9-12). Similarly the Apostle Paul named Jannes and Jambres as the old rascals who will serve as patterns for many in these last days (2 Ti. 3:1-9). He also generalized that “all who are in Asia have turned away from me” and singled out Phygelus and Hermogenes as noteworthy examples (2 Ti. 1:15). Similarly he warned about Demas—a man who had been one of Paul’s coworkers and companions—because he preferred the world (2 Ti. 4:10). Paul also wanted church leaders to be wary of “Alexander the coppersmith” who “did me great harm” and “strongly opposed our message” (2 Ti. 4:14-15). He urged Timothy to “charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine, nor to devote themselves to myths . . . which promote speculations rather than . . . a good conscience and a sincere faith.” These “certain persons” had “wandered away into vain discussion, desiring to be teachers. . . without understanding either what they are saying or the things about which they make confident assertions” (1 Ti. 13-7). He named three of them by name (“among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander” and “among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus”). These were men who also were operating inside the first-century network of apostolic churches. They were insiders who had “made shipwreck of their faith” and “swerved from the truth.” They were “upsetting the faith of some” with “irreverent babble” that will “lead people into more and more ungodliness” and “spread like gangrene” (1 Ti. 1:19-20; 2 Ti. 2:16-18). Similarly the authors of VIID are attempting to warn the Bible-believing world that many of the professors at evangelical schools (who generally earned their PhDs from prestigious post-protestant, anti-evangelical schools) are leading evangelicals away from evangelical orthodoxy through the use of unorthodox methodology.

VIID also runs the risk of being accused of trying to stymie the progress of biblical scholarship, of trying to keep us stuck in the past, of interfering with the grand quest to “follow the truth wherever it leads,” and of thus being overall anti-intellectual and anti-scholarly. But VIID is an intellectual and scholarly attempt to discourage the use of corrosive literary criticism while encouraging healthy biblical scholarship. The authors urge considering of lessons of the past which show how the higher critical path leads not to pinnacles of illumination, enlightenment, and progress but to precipices of doubt. The application of feminist criticism, form criticism, genre criticism, historical criticism, Marxist criticism, midrash criticism, mythological criticism, New Criticism, new historical criticism, post-colonial criticism, post-structuralist criticism, psychoanalytic criticism, redaction criticism, rhetorical criticism, sociological criticism, source criticism, and whatever the next flavor of literary criticism that becomes vogue among secular scholars in the next decade all have one thing in common: They are critical and revolutionary by nature. Progress is made by challenging traditions and creating new knowledge with new wisdom. VIID insists that when evangelical scholars use secular literary criticism in their biblical criticism, it will ultimately lead to the same doctrinal graveyard that the neo-orthodox and liberal/modernist scholars filled in former decades with their use of higher criticism. The speculations produced during the exercise of critical methodologies is invariably given precedence over the plain meanings in the text of the Bible, once again the word of God is nullified for the sake of human traditions.

The neo-evangelical revolution is also changing the field of historical-evidential Christian apologetics. More than once VIID touches upon the rising tendency among evangelical biblical scholars to meet the historical critics on their own turf. They often create scholarly defenses for the big things—such as the general historical reliability of the gospels and the historical likelihood of the resurrection of Jesus—while being overly willing to amputate some of the seemingly less defensible and more dispensable propositions in the Bible. This innovative (non-classical) approach seems to be creating a division between those satisfied with defending a historical, creedal, and “mere” Christianity and those who would also defend the Bible in whole and part.

Some of VIID’s chapters are derived from articles originally posted at DefendingInerrancy.com, a website that has had more than 200,000 visits, 55,000 Facebook likes, and 48,000 signatures on its petition in support of The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. These statistics suggest that the latest battle for the Bible has not been lost yet. In The Magnificent Seven, a western adaptation of The Seven Samurai, the plot is further complicated by the ongoing question of whether the villagers will allow the bandits to continue to fleece them or whether they will really rise up and join the veterans in the fight. What will the villagers in the evangelical village do about neo-evangelical and neo-orthodox scholarship that is robbing them of their doctrinal heritage? To borrow a phrase from the oaths sworn by those seeking either citizenship or high office in the United States, will we defend our constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic?” Will we fight the good fight of faith not just against the siegeworks erected outside the city walls but also against those that have been smuggled inside the walls? Or will we watch the undermined walls collapse mysteriously around us and wonder how our harvest was plundered again? For those fighting the good fight of faith, Vital Issues in the Inerrancy Debate deserves consideration.


Chapter by Chapter

The book begins with a one-page tribute to Dr. Norman Geisler by the other contributors for his decades of defending and commending the faith. Indeed he is “worthy of a double honor” (1 Tim. 5:17). The two-page foreword by Dr. Paige Patterson sets the tone well with a call to continued vigilance. Patterson also provides excellent insights into the history of the inerrancy debate. He was part of the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy (ICBI) and remembers it well. The two-page preface acknowledges the debt to the ICBI and adds another dimension to the history of the debate. The first 115 pages are devoted to defining inerrancy. The remaining pages are devoted to defending it.

The first chapter is titled “The Historic Documents of the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy.” It is 17 pages long and is largely a condensed adaptation of the book Explaining Biblical Inerrancy (Bastion Books, 2012). Geisler begins by pointing out that he is currently one of the last three living framers of the three statements produced by the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy. He writes to “dispel some contemporary misinterpretations of what the ICBI framers meant by inerrancy” and to set the record straight. He enumerates the four fundamental documents of the ICBI (all four of which are collected in Explaining Biblical Inerrancy) and the other important books produced by the ICBI. He explains why the ICBI view of inerrancy is important. He explains the four main areas where scholars on the more liberal end of the evangelical spectrum (and usually holding membership in the Evangelical Theological Society and signing agreement with CSBI) have ignored, misunderstood, or otherwise challenged the CSBI: (1) the meaning of “truth,” (2) the function of genre, (3) the nature of historical narratives, (4) the relationship between hermeneutics and inerrancy. He very ably bolsters these four areas. He also gives a subtle challenge to the Evangelical Theological Society to enforce their doctrinal statement among its members. This chapter also includes all the articles of affirmation and denial from the CSBI and CSBH. This may then be the first time these two statements have ever been put together in their entirely and placed into a printed book. This was an unbeatable choice for a first chapter. This is something everyone in the ETS and EPS should come to grips with. Those who appreciate this chapter will enjoy its expansion in Explaining Biblical Inerrancy.

Chapter two is titled “What Is Inerrancy and Why Should We Care?” It is only four pages long and is written by Geisler and Shawn Nelson. It begins with a brief explanation of the three “in’s”: Inspiration, Infallibility, and Inerrancy. It gives four reasons why inerrancy is important and ultimately an essential—not peripheral—doctrine. Pointing to CSBI as the standard for describing what inerrancy is and is not, it proceeds to explain that the historical view of inerrancy is under attack right now. It gives a focus on the new wave of challenges to CSBI that arguably began in 2010 with various published and spoken statements by apologist Michael Licona.

Chapter three is also by Nelson and is titled “A Voice from a New Generation: What’s at Stake?” Nelson makes it clear the attack upon inerrancy by Michael Licona in 2010 exposed a much bigger problem. Several highly esteemed scholars from the ETS (Craig Blomberg, William Lane Craig, Gary Habermas, Daniel Wallace, J.P. Moreland, W. David Beck, Jeremy Evans, Craig Keener, Douglas Moo, Heath Thomas, William Warren, and Edwin Yamauchi) publically voiced their support for Licona’s right to trump both CSBI and CSBH with form criticism and historical criticism. And this despite very clear statements in both ICBI statements on inerrancy (CSBI and CSBH) that guard against the exact type of maneuver Licona was using. Nelson gives a helpful tour of the historical views of biblical inspiration, infallibility, and inerrancy. He cites Clement of Rome, Polycarp, Pseudo-Barnabas, Papias, Ignatius of Antioch, the Shepherd of Hermas, the Didache, and the Epistle to Diognetus, Justin Martyr, Tatian, Tertullian, Hippolytus, Origen, Cyprian, Eusebius, Athanasius, Cyril, Jerome, and Augustine. He also gives a helpful and concise tour of how the thought of Bacon, Hobbes, Spinoza, Hume, Kant, and Darwin led to a growing popularity of biblical errancy. He distinguishes between Evangelical, Liberal, and Neo-Evangelical views. He projects that the erosion of inerrancy will lead to further doubt and uses the regress of Bart Erhman as an example we should learn from. He makes additional arguments for the importance of an uncompromising view of inerrancy and ends with recommendations for staunching the decay.

Chapter four is written by F. David Farnell and titled, “Evangelical Mentoring: The Danger from Within.” With a shepherd’s heart and a scholar’s eye, Farnell starts by contrasting faithful mentoring with radical mentoring. A considerable amount of Jesus’ earthly ministry was in opposition with those who had interpretations of the Bible that made null the Word of God null. These men were disciples in a tradition and they were making disciples in that tradition. Jesus chose disciples like Peter and Paul to carry on his traditions and make disciples. Paul was a mentor to reliable men like Timothy and Titus. These men were to be mentors to other faithful men who could teach others. Farnell reminds us that some traditions attempt to stay faithful to the apostolic tradition and to the scriptures while other traditions do not represent them faithfully. In a way, it all comes down to mentoring. Against this backdrop he explains his concerns over some of the eighteen professors showcased in the 2015 book titled I Still Believe. He focuses upon the testimonies of Donald Hagner, Bruce Waltke, James Dunn, and Scot McKnight. He’s left questioning whether many of the professors—the teachers of the future teachers—in many evangelical institutions are passing on doubts rather than faith to the students who have been entrusted to them.

Chapter five is a review by Geisler of the 2013 book Five Views on Biblical Inerrancy (FVBI). He begins by pointing out three serious problems with the approach of this book. Having five views in dialogue for inerrancy suggests that inerrancy is “up for grabs” when it really is not. There are not five views. There are ultimately two views. Either the Bible contains errors and contradictions or it does not. Also, of the five authors, only one is an actual inerrantist; the other four are varying degrees of errantists. The deck seems stacked. And since the book was to discuss the CSBI, why were none of the three living framers of the CSBI (Sproul, Packer, or Geisler) asked to participate in a dialogue? His review is 39 meaty pages in length. It’s daunting to try to summarize it. He points out that the Evangelical Theological Society officially adopted the CSBI as its definition of inerrancy. He provides five reasons for the importance and fundamental position of inerrancy. He notes that some of the authors of FVBI misunderstand “truth” and some of them wrongly assume purpose determines meaning. Propositional revelation, accommodation, lack of precision, the role of extra-biblica data, the role of hermeneutics, and the role of extra-biblical genre, pluralism, conventionalism, and foundationalism are all discussed. Geisler nails the coffin lid shut on the question of whether Licona’s views can be harmonized with CSBI and CSBH by pointing out that all three of the remaining framers of the Chicago statements (Sproul, Packer, and Geisler) have confirmed that they cannot. The story of ETS and Robert Gundry is retold. Examples of dealing with bible difficulties (what some of the authors of FBVI would call contradictions) in the OT and NT are given. Geisler also answers the errantists charges against inerrantists of being unbiblical, unhistorical, using the slippery slope argument, being parochial, unethical, divisive, and unloving. Reading this chapter reminded me that Geisler deserves the tribute that the book begins with.

Chapter six is by Dr. William Roach and is titled “The 2015 Shepherds’ Conference on Inerrancy.” John MacArthur and The Master’s Seminary hosted a conference on inerrancy in March 2015. They reaffirmed the importance of holding to total inerrancy and to defining it as the CSBI did. This seven page article reports positively on that conference.

Chapter seven is a fascinating interview William Roach conducted with Paige Patterson. They discuss the conservative resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention and how their seminaries were rescued from errantism. It discusses what interplay there was between it and the ICBI.

In chapter eight Geisler answers the question of whether one has to be a Calvinist to believe in inerrancy. Many of the leaders of the later ICBI inerrancy movement were

strong Calvinists but most of the signers of the ICBI statements on inerrancy identified as moderate Calvinists, Cal-minians, Arminians, Wesleyans, “or some other label.” Geisler establishes continuity with Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Warfield, Hodge, Wesley, and other Wesleyans. He shows how they upheld inerrancy. He concludes, “Inerrancy is neither a late nor a denominational doctrine. It is not provincial but universal. It is the foundation for every group that names the name of Christ. . .”

Chapter nine is where Geisler reexamines the relationship between inerrancy and hermeneutics. He is tackling the claim that is made by those who defend the attacks against CSBI and CSBH by saying, “Leave him alone. It’s just a matter of interpretation, not of inerrancy.” This could be the most important chapter of the book as it tackles what may be the thing that evangelicals have had the hardest time understanding. Today many evangelicals can try to claim to be inerrantists and to agree with CSBI while promoting hermeneutical gymnastics to trump inerrancy. Yet it was clear to the wise leaders of the ICBI that after producing the CSBI still had to proceed to create the CSBH. What good is it to reinforce the front door while leaving the backdoor unlocked? Geisler discusses how this played out with the controversies surrounding Jack Rodgers, Robert Gundry, Paul Jewett, and Michael Licona. He challenges various assumptions: inspiration and interpretation are separate matters, allegorical interpretation, truth is not correspondence to facts, biblical narratives are not necessarily historical, hermeneutic is neutral, and more.

In chapter ten Geisler responds to William Lane Craig’s advocacy of limited inerrancy based on inductive logic and his argument against unlimited inerrancy as based on deductive logic. Naturally Geisler begins with the question of whether inerrancy has an inductive or deductive basis. Explaining the “false disjunction,” the chapter quickly becomes a delight for those of us who appreciate logic. He then proceeds to tackle Craig’s claims that only the author’s intentions (and not all affirmations) are inerrant, that only essential matters are inerrant but not peripheral matters, and that extra-biblical genre determines the meaning of biblical texts. He discusses the question of genre and explains how inerrancy is an essential doctrine. He discusses Licona’s errors. He contrasts the evangelical and neo-evangelical views of inerrancy and reminds that the ETS adopted CSBI in 2006 as its definition of inerrancy. Geisler also makes the important correction that Kenneth Kantzer, the professor Craig claims to have learned the doctrine of inerrancy from, was actually a committed follower of the Warfield-Hodge view of total inerrancy. Kantzer would have been “clearly opposed to the Craig-Licona view of limited inerrancy.” He also reminds Craig that Packer, Sproul, and Geisler have all confirmed that Licona’s view of Mt 27 (which Craig also essentially holds) is not compatible at all with CSBI or CSBH. He concludes saying, “Thus evangelicalism is the rightful owner of unlimited inerrancy, and those professed evangelicals who modify it or limit it to redemptive matters are, at best, the rightful owners of the term Neo-Evangelical.”

Chapter eleven is by Farnell and is titled “Early Twentieth Century Challenges to Inerrancy.” Encouraging us to learn from history in order to not repeat its mistakes, Farnell compares what was happening in the early twentieth century (with the fundamentalist-modernist controversy) and what is happening here in the early twenty-first century (with the evangelical-neoevangelical controversy). The parallels seem uncanny. He explains how and why the The Fundamentals was produced and “left as a testimony by the faithful to the early twentieth-century church’s experience of the attack on orthodox Protestant beliefs, conducted aggressively by higher criticism, liberal theology, Catholicism. . . , socialism, Modernism, atheism, Christian Science, Mormonism, Millennial Dawn, Spiritualism, and evolutionism that had infiltrated its ranks and subsequently caused great damage within the church with regard to its vitality and theology. Above all, they left it as a warning to future generations in hopes of preventing a similar occurrence among God’s people in the future.” Farnell points out that after the divinity schools fell to modernism new schools like Westminster Theological Seminary, Dallas Theological Seminary, and Fuller Seminary were planted to serve as bastions of conservative, biblical doctrine, inerrancy, and the fundamentals of the faith.

In chapter twelve, Farnell picks up where he left off in chapter 11. He discusses the challenges (or crisis) in the twenty-first century caused largely by fundamentalist or evangelical scholars seeking the respect of mainline academia. Many of the young scholars were sent to Ivy League, British, or Continental European schools to earn their PhDs. Many schools began to hire professors who were from these schools that were dominated by theological liberalism. With them came the neo-orthodoxy of Karl Barth. He explains how Fuller Seminary drifted away from evangelical views about the Bible and became rather neo-evangelical. He discusses Ladd, Lindsell, Rogers, McKim, Woodbridge, Gundry, Barr, ICBI, ETS, Blomberg, Silva, Geisler, The Jesus Crisis, Bock, Webb, Osborne, The Jesus Quest, the third quest for the historical Jesus, Perrin, Ladd, Roach, Defending Inerrancy, Sparks, McCall, Thompson, Yarbrough, Linnemann, Gundry, more Blomberg, Dan Wallace, Bill Craig, Hagner, Ehrman, and more. This provides an excellent history which filled in many gaps for me. It shows that critical scholarship is still going today where it went in the past.

Chapter thirteen is titled “The Resurgence of Neo-Evangelicalism: Craig Blomberg’s Latest Book and the Future of Evangelical Theology.” Here William Roach provides a concise but helpful historical backdrop of the controversies over inerrancy. He is primarily critiquing Craig Blomberg’s book Can We Still Believe the Bible? But he also weaves in some other recent works by neo-evangelicals who advocate errantism. He corrects some inaccuracies and confirms that Blomberg is yet another scholar who is “now willing to move beyond the vision and legacy of classic evangelicalism and the ICBI.” In his critique of Blomberg’s ideas he also weaves in many other related bits with mastery of the subject matter.

In chapter fourteen Phil Fernandez describes how the battle for the Bible has begun again. He begins by saying, “This chapter is not meant to divide brothers in Christ. Rather, it is a call to honesty. Those who call themselves evangelicals must truly be evangelicals. . . . If we sign a doctrinal statement, we must actually believe what we affirmed in that statement. We should not have the liberty to redefine the doctrines addressed in that statement. . . . this chapter should not be understood as an attack on Christian brothers. Rather, it is an indictment on the present state of evangelical scholarship itself.” He explains how the battle for the Bible raged in the 1970s and how it led to the ICBI. He discusses the reason for Robert Gundry being asked to leave the ETS and how the ETS did not vote Clark Pinnock out. He also sees a revival of the battle for the Bible starting with Mike Licona in 2010. He discusses the problems of genre and historiography in a way that harmonizes well with the other chapters but which also remains distinct. One thing that stood out to me was the way Phil tied in the minimal facts case for the resurrection. He says, it “is a great way to defend the resurrection. But, we must never allow the minimal facts case to evolve into a minimal facts evangelicalism or a minimal facts New Testament scholarship.” He challenges the ETS to enforce and even enlarge their doctrinal statement.

Chapter fifteen considers the question of whether or not biblical inerrancy as a “litmus test” of evangelical orthodoxy. This was written by Christopher Haun in response to a blog post written by Daniel Wallace. Wallace had pointed out that Carl F. H. Henry remained averse to setting biblical inerrancy as the litmus test of orthodoxy. Haun attempts to show how Wallace is partially right and partially wrong. He clarifies Henry’s position using several quotes by Henry himself and some by Ronald Nash.

Farnell is asking “Can We Still Believe Critical Evangelical Scholars?” in chapter sixteen. He reminds us of how vibrant Christianity had been in the 18th and 19th centuries and then asks how so many churches and cathedrals are boarded up now. How did British and Scottish universities become spiritually dead? And why do American evangelicals still go there to get their PhDs?  He explains that the change was internal. He explains a few forces of change and talks about why things were different in the United States. One of the differences is that two wealthy laymen paid for a project that would produce the twelve volume set of The Fundamentals between 1910 and 1917. Three million of those volumes were distributed. As schools like Princeton succumbed to the forces of apostasy, schools like Westminster Theological Seminary, Dallas Theological Seminary, and Fuller Theological Seminary were started. He compares the similarities between the 20th and 21st century scenes and encourages us to learn the lessons of the past. He discusses some of the harmful ideas of Ladd, Blomberg, Hagner, and more.

In chapter seventeen Farnell discusses “The ‘Magic’ of Historical Criticism.” This is a 59 page essay.

In chapters 18 and 19, Farnell gives a “Critical Evaluation of Robert H. Gundry’s Westmont College Lecture, ‘Peter: False Disciple and Apostate according to Saint Matthew’”

In chapter 20 Geisler and Farnell provide “A Critical Review of Donald Hagner’s ‘Ten Guidelines for Evangelical Scholarship’”

Chapter 21. Geisler sets the record straight on “On Licona Muddying the Waters of the Chicago Statements of Biblical Inerrancy and Hermeneutics.”


Chapter 22. Geisler sets the record straight on “The Early Church Fathers and the Resurrection of the Saints in Matthew 27:51–54.”

Chapter 23. Geisler reviews Craig Blomberg’s book Can We Still Believe in the Bible? He shows how Blomberg’s views contradict, misunderstand, and attack the ICBI view on inerrancy. He responds to Blomberg’s Defense of Robert Gundry, Murray Harris, Mike Licona

Chapter 24 | ICBI Inerrancy Is Not for the Birds | Joseph Holden responds to the “current trend among evangelical New Testament scholars to utilize or approve of genre criticism (e.g., Craig Blomberg, Michael Licona, Darrell Bock, Michael Bird, Carlos Bovell, Kevin Vanhoozer, et al.) to dehistoricize the biblical text appears to stem from an aversion to the correspondence view of truth.”

Chapter 25. Contemporary Evangelical NT Genre Criticism Opening Pandora’s Box? Joseph M. Holden

Chapter 26 | Book Review: Craig Blomberg’s Can We Still Believe the Bible? |Joseph M. Holden

Chapter 27 | Book Review: The Lost World of Adam and Eve | Norman L. Geisler

Chapter 28 | An Exposition and Refutation of the Key Presuppositions of Contemporary Jesus Research | Phil Fernandes

Chapter 29 | Redating the Gospels | Phil Fernandes

Chapter 30 | Misinterpreting J. I. Packer on Inerrancy and Hermeneutics | William C. Roach and Norman L. Geisler

Chapter 31 | Can We Still Trust New Testament Professors? | Bob Wilkin

Chapter 32 | Christopher T. Haun explores the question of whether ancient Romans detected the influence of Roman historiography in Matthew 27:45–54 or not. He puts the theory that Roman historians influenced Matthew’s way of reporting history to the test by examining thirty case studies where ancient Romans referred to one or more of the events in Matthew 27:45–54. Did any of the ancients interpret these events less than literally? He also revisits the three case studies that Licona cited in The Resurrection of Jesus.

Epilogue | Historical Criticism vs. Grammatico-Historical: Quo Vadis Evangelicals? | F. David Farnell

Appendix: Statements on the Importance of Inerrancy from Prominent Christian Leaders

[1] Christopher T. Haun is a Master’s Degree candidate at Veritas Evangelical Seminary and an editorial associate at Bastion Books. This book review was written for the April 2016 issue of the Journal of the International Society of Christian Apologetics.

[2] To purchase at a 40% discount, use “inerrant” as a coupon code upon checkout at http://wipfandstock.com/vital-issues-in-the-inerrancy-debate.html. Also available at http://www.amazon.com/Vital-Issues-Inerrancy-Debate-Farnell/dp/149823724X

Philosophy of Religion, second edition

We are considering releasing an updated version of this book as an e-book at http://BastionBooks.com.

Philosophy of Religion chosen as a “Choice Evangelical Book of the Year” by Christianity Today (1975). Many people still appreciate deeply to this day.

It’s still in print!  You can order the book at: https://wipfandstock.com/store/Philosophy_of_Religion_Second_Edition


Philosophy of Religion

Second Edition
By Dr. Norman Geisler, Winfried Corduan
Retail Price:
Web Price: $32.80

ISBN 10: 1-59244-134-3
ISBN 13: 978-1-59244-134-1
Pages: 402
Binding: Paperback
Publication Date: 01/15/2003
Street Date: 01/15/2003
Division: Wipf and Stock
Category: Theology

No preview on Google Books.

Previous publisher:


Product Description

Widely acclaimed!

Is there any basis in reality for a religious experience?
Is there any basis in reason for belief in God?
Is it even possible to speak meaningfully of a transcendent being?
And how does one account for evil?

The authors answer these questions, representing the four most important issues in the philosophy of religion, in a comprehensive way and “form the perspective of classical theism.” They support this position with in-depth argumentation, taking into account both classical and contemporary writers.

With its well-outlined text, Philosophy of Religion is “user friendly.” An introduction, chapter summaries, a glossary, indexes, and bibliography contribute to this end.

In this second edition, the authors have not only updated the text and bibliography, but also refined some of the arguments, “scaled down and evened out” the vocabulary, and added several pedagogical aids. The first edition, written by Norman L. Geisler alone, appeared in 1974.

Baker’s Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics (1999) / The Big Book of Apologetics (2012)

The Big Book of Christian Apologetics: An A to Z Guide (or “BOCA”) is a slightly updated (2012) and somewhat abridged version of The Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics (or “BECA,” 1999). Some footnotes were updated. BOCA has 674 pages and BECA has 864 pages.

Available at: BakerBooks.com and Christianbook.com

Can you explain your faith?

In our pluralistic, post-Christian world, the need to be able to clearly and confidently explain why you believe what you believe has never been greater.

The Big Book of Christian Apologetics is a comprehensive resource designed to equip you with information to help you defend and explain your faith to anyone, anywhere. Examining nearly every key issue, person, and concept related to Christian apologetics, this helpful book

  • clarifies difficult biblical passages
  • clearly explains various philosophical systems and concepts
  • examines contemporary issues and challenges
  • offers classic apologetic arguments

It gives you the background you need to intelligently and persuasively talk about your Christian faith with skeptics and seekers in private or in the public square.


Available through Amazon or Alibris

Silver Medallion Award winner

Weighing in at 850 pages, the monumental work has become a standard text in the field and one of the most comprehensive single volumes on apologetics.

“This is a remarkable book in both breadth and depth. I anticipate that it will often be the first reference work I turn to, and I will encourage my students to use it both for the articles and for the bibliographies.”

—Winfried Corduan, professor emeritus of philosophy and religion, Taylor University, Upland, Indiana

“Baker’s Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics is just what we need. Its author adopts a modern form of Thomism, defending classical apologetics. Yet this work is clear and true-a fine resource for every defender of the faith.”

—David K. Clark, Ph.D.; Director of the Center for Biblical and Theological Foundations, Professor of Theology, Bethel Seminary

“This is an extraordinary helpful resource. A superb job by one of evangelicalism’s premier scholars.”

—Charles W. Colson, Prison Fellowship Ministries

“Nowhere will anyone find more apologetic information than in this volume. Time and again I was impressed with the sheer amount of data that Norm Geisler places at the fingertips of the student. This book will serve as the chief reference work in apologetics for years to come.”

—Gary R. Habermas, Distinguished Professor of Apologetics and Philosophy, Liberty University

“Norman has done it again! He has compiled one of the most thorough and accurate apologetic works to date. The Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics gives us the tools to share our faith to a broken and skeptical world. It should be a part of everyone’s library.”

—Josh McDowell, author, More Than a Carpenter

“Baker’s Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics, edited by Norman Geisler, is not only a rich encyclopedia for reference but because of the author’s remarkable penchant for making abstract and difficult truths both comprehensible and applicable to daily life, the book has value to the whole Christian community. Everyone ought to own a copy of Geisler’s Baker’s Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics.”

—L. Paige Patterson, president, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas

“There are only a few books I keep right next to my desk – and Norm Geisler’s Baker’s Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics is one of them. I’m glad it’s a hardcover book, because it gets used all the time. Covering a range of apologetic topics, this is undoubtedly one of the most relevant volumes to come along in decades. I heartily recommend it.”

—Ron Rhodes, PhD; President, Reasoning from the Scriptures Ministries

“From one of the most knowledgeable minds on the subject comes this invaluable resource. I am grateful to Norman Geisler for giving us this great reservoir of information. I will treasure it.”

—Ravi K. Zacharias; President, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries

“One cannot help but be impressed with the scope of subject matter and the thorough way in which each topic is discussed… This volume will be a remarkably helpful tool for anyone interested in these many topics relevant to the defense and understanding of Christianity.”

—Roy B. Zuck, Bibliotheca Sacra

“I can not say enough positive about this work. It is a great addition to the field of apologetics. And because it is so complete, it may be around for a long time.”

—Mal Couch, Conservative Theological Journal

Challenges to Christianity come from a variety of people and belief systems, and Christians are continually searching for the appropriate responses to critics of their faith. Yet until now there has been no definitive one-volume encyclopedia designed to equip believers for Christian defense against the full range of opposing arguments.

The Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics is such a work. This comprehensive reference volume covers every key issue, person, and concept related to Christian apologetics. Written entirely by leading apologist Norman Geisler, it stands as the culmination of the author’s life-long career and ministry.

The Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics offers valuable information and advice to a wide audience: pastors and Christian leaders, students on college campuses, those involved in counter-cult ministries-all Christians who encounter skeptics.

The author provides extensive coverage of:

  • individuals, such as Karl Marx and C. S. Lewis
  • general apologetics topics, such as the types of apologetics and the role of the Holy Spirit in apologetics
  • specific challenges, such as the relationship between science and Christianity and the reliability of the Bible
  • philosophical systems, such as nihilism and existentialism
  • philosophical concepts, such as the principle of sufficient reason and the principle of causality
  • biblical issues, such as the resurrection and the date of the exodus
  • contemporary concerns, such as the Jesus Seminar and post-modernism
  • perennial apologetic arguments, such as the problem of evil and the existence of God

The encyclopedia also features two indexes (subject and Scripture) that allow readers to easily locate the specific information they need.


Also translated into Brazillian Portugese:


Enciclopédia de Apologética

Enciclopédia de Apologética

Norman Geisler

Editora Vida

Uma obra de apologética cristã é sempre necessária. Afinal, nunca o cristianismo sofreu tantos ataques vindos de todas as esferas da sociedade como nos dias atuais. Mas, quando essa obra é fruto de pesquisa de um dos maiores apologistas do nosso tempo e já tem alcançado o respeito e a credibilidade merecida no mundo todo, ela se torna imprescindível. Muitos conceitos antibíblicos cercam nossa sociedade. As pessoas abraçam idéias sem ter noção das conseqüências disso para seu futuro. Elas dão as costas à verdade e se inclinam para mitos e teorias que mais agradam aos próprios ouvidos. As religiões e os sistemas filosóficos oferecem de tudo em suas prateleiras. Está tudo aí:

• ateísmo;

• deísmo;

• ceticismo;

• agnosticismo;

• evolucionismo;

• relativismo;

• materialismo e muito mais.

Esta obra expõe esses e outros conceitos importantes que têm moldado a vida de muita gente. Além disso, expõe e apresenta soluções aos problemas levantados em relação à Bíblia que têm causado polêmica ao longo dos anos, dentre os quais destacam-se:

• Como a Bíblia pode ser inerrante se foi escrita por homens falíveis?

• A Criação apresentada em Gênesis 1 é contrária

às descobertas da ciência moderna?

• Como explicar as muitas “contradições” da Bíblia?

A Enciclopédia de apologética também responde às severas críticas a algumas das principais doutrinas do cristianismo:

• Os cristãos copiaram a Trindade do paganismo?

• Jesus é realmente Deus encarnado?

• A ressurreição de Cristo aconteceu mesmo?

• O inferno é compatível com a crença num Deus de amor?

• Os milagres são realmente possíveis?

• As profecias da Bíblia são genuínas ou foram registradas

depois dos acontecimentos?

Você também encontrará informações sobre a vida e o pensamento de pessoas que defenderam a fé cristã contra céticos e opositores. Dentre esses, estão:

• Atanásio;

• Agostinho;

• Tomás de Aquino;

• C. S. Lewis;

• F. F. Bruce e muitos outros.

Você também vai conhecer a vida e o pensamento de alguns opositores do cristianismo, como o filósofo Bertrand Russell, e de outros que contribuíram para pôr em xeque a ortodoxia cristã, como:

• Kant;

• Hume;

• Espinosa;

• Nietzsche e outros.

Nesta obra monumental, Norman Geisler oferece respostas convincentes à luz da Bíblia e da razão para esses pensadores e suas teorias. O autor está convencido de que o que alguém pensa sobre Deus, sobre a Bíblia e sobre a fé cristã vai determinar sua visão

de mundo e, conseqüentemente, sua vida pela eternidade.


Norman Geisler, deão e professor de teologia e apologética no Southern Evangelical Seminary, Estados Unidos, é um renomado apologista cristão. Escreveu vários livros, entre eles, Eleitos, mas livres; Introdução bíblica (ambos publicados pela Editora Vida).

webmaster on 14 out 2006 | Absurdo do ateísmo & Argumentos ateístas &Confiabilidade da Bíblia&Cristo ressuscitou? &Deus existe? &Livros recomendados &Pluralismo religioso &Problema do mal | Comments (5)

If God, Why Evil? A New Way to Think about the Question

If God, Why Evil?

A New Way to Think about the Question

Bethany House, 2011


Outreach Magazine recognized
If God, Why Evil?
as the
2012 Outreach Resource
in Apologetics

“This is one of the most profound and yet simple books on the subject of the problem of evil. It provides fresh insights for scholars, but is easily digestible by nonspecialists…. Geisler deals with tough issues such as animal suffering and natural disasters.” –Outreach Magazine

Where Did Evil Come From? And Why Doesn’t God Do Something About It?

The problem of evil is perhaps the most difficult question the Christian must face. If God is good and all-powerful, why is there suffering in the world? Can’t God put an end to murder, rape, and starvation? What about earthquakes, hurricanes, and tsunamis? Why couldn’t a perfect God have made a perfect world?


In this concise but thorough book, Dr. Norman Geisler carefully answers these tough questions, using step-by-step explanations and compelling examples. He walks the reader through time-tested answers but also provides a new approach revolving around whether or not this world is the “best of all possible worlds.” All this adds up to comforting news for believers: we can rest assured that God is both loving and all-powerful.

“Solid, insightful answers to difficult and intriguing questions that only Geisler could do. A must-read.” –Josh D. McDowell, Author/speaker, Campus Crusade for Christ

“This is one of the clearest, most comprehensive, and penetrating presentations on one of the most difficult problems that thinking Christians face.” –Ravi Zacharias, bestselling author and president of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries


“Norm Geisler has made a marked impact on the study of apologetics, contending for the remarkable gift of faith with which God has blessed His creation. Tackling one of the most misunderstood realities–evil in the world–Norm has shed the light of God’s Word in a clear and unmistakable way in helping the human mind to rejoice in the vastness of God’s love that will ultimately overcome evil victoriously. Your heart will be greatly enlightened and comforted as you read If God, Why Evil?” –Franklin Graham, President and CEO, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, Samaritan’s Purse


“This small book by Norman Geisler concisely answers the big questions on the problem of evil. It is a ‘crash course’ that dispels confusion and brings clarity to this much-debated topic. Highly recommended!” –Dr. Ron Rhodes, President, Reasoning from the Scriptures Ministries


“This is classic Geisler-brilliant, incisive, succinct, convincing. He is one of the great defenders of Christianity.” –Lee Strobel, author, The Case for Christ and The Case for the Real Jesus


“For more than five decades, Norm Geisler has been an incredible blessing to the church, addressing and treating virtually every major issue in the philosophy of religion. In this volume, he wades into one of his favorite subjects–the problem of evil. He faces squarely the major objections from a variety of angles and provides a wide range of concise responses that are both profound and satisfying. Readers will encounter countless gems that make this volume a real treasure. I recommend it highly.” –Gary R. Habermas, Distinguished Research Professor, Liberty University and Theological Seminary


“No one deals as effectively with the philosophical problem of evil as does Norm Geisler. If God, Why Evil? is scholarship made readable for every thinking Christian. As usual, Geisler is succinct, profound, and fun all at the same moment.” –Paige Patterson, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary

To order the book please visit International Legacy orBaker Books.


Previews available: Baker Books | Google Books | Scribd


To order a high-quality DVD of the lecture predicated upon this book, please consider ordering either the DVD If God, Why Evil?from here or Overcoming Obstacles to Sharing Christ (2012) from International Legacy (here).

The lecture in MP3 format can be ordered here.

To see a lower-quality presentation of this lecture, please visit YouTube at http://youtu.be/D4_y9QcVMZk.

Also consider Dr. Geisler’s chapter on God and evil in hisSystematic Theology.

Also of possible interest:

9 Points for Preaching on the Problem of Evil

God, Dispensations and Evil
Book reviews of If God, Why Evil:


Systematic Theology

Systematic Theology

in Four Big Volumes 

— or —  One Really Big Volume!


Save 53% on the One-Volume Edition of Norman Geisler’s Systematic Theology!

Normally $60 US. On sale for $27.99 here


Systematic Theology, one-volume ed.: In One Volume  (Bethany House, 2011)




Order:   Bethany House or Christianbook.com

See a Preview HERE

The Culminating Work of a Lifetime of Study and Research

Beginning with an introduction to theology and ending with last things, this complete-in-one volume covers the foundational concepts in Christian theology, including all the key topics from the widely praised original four volumes.




Systematic Theology, Four Volumes (Bethany, 2005)

Order all four volumes in electronic Logos format for your computer  here.

Order all four volumes as hardback books at:  Bethany  or Christianbook.com

Systematic Theology, Vol 1: Introduction, Bible (Bethany, 2002)

Systematic Theology, Vol. 1


As Dr. Norman Geisler explains and defends the essentials that make Christian belief possible–the preconditions–he lays a thorough foundation for Christian faith that will instruct theologians, pastors, and students for years to come.


Building on that foundation, Geisler’s bibliology, including the inspiration and authority of the Bible, has been called the most extensive defense of the consistent evangelical view of Holy Scripture available. – Bethany House


Part One: Introduction (Prolegomena)
Chapter One: Introduction
Chapter Two: God: The Metaphysical Precondition
Chapter Three: Miracles: The Supernatural Precondition
Chapter Four: Revelation: The Revelational Precondition
Chapter Five: Logic: The Rational Precondition
Chapter Six: Meaning: The Semantical Precondition
Chapter Seven: Truth: The Epistemological Precondition
Chapter Eight: Exclusivism: The Oppositional Precondition
Chapter Nine: Language: The Linguistic Precondition
Chapter Ten: Interpretation: The Hermeneutical Precondition
Chapter Eleven: Historiography: The Historical Precondition
Chapter Twelve: Method: The Methodological Precondition
Part Two: Bible (Bibliology)
I. Section One: Biblical
Chapter Thirteen: The Origin and Inspiration of the Bible
Chapter Fourteen: The Divine Nature of the Bible
Chapter Fifteen: The Human Nature of the Bible
Chapter Sixteen: Jesus and the Bible
II. Section Two: Historical
Chapter Seventeen: Church Fathers on the Bible
Chapter Eighteen: The Historical Church on the Bible
Chapter Nineteen: The History of Destructive Biblical Criticism
Chapter Twenty: Liberalism on the Bible
Chapter Twenty-One: Neo-Orthodoxy on the Bible
Chapter Twenty-Two: Neo-Evangelicals on the Bible
Chapter Twenty-Three: Evangelicals on the Bible
Chapter Twenty-Four: Fundamentalism on the Bible
III. Section Three: Theological
Chapter Twenty-Five: The Historicity of the Old Testament
Chapter Twenty-Six: The Historicity of the New Testament
Chapter Twenty-Seven: The Inerrancy of the Bible
Chapter Twenty-Eight: The Canonicity of the Bible
Chapter Twenty-Nine: Summary of the Evidence for the Bible
Appendix One: Objections Against Theistic Arguments
Appendix Two: Do Historical Facts Speak for Themselves?

Geisler, Norman L.: Systematic Theology, Volume One: Introduction, Bible. Minneapolis, MN : Bethany House Publishers, 2002, S. 11

Systematic Theology, Vol 2: God, Creation (Bethany, 2003)

Synopsis for V2:  http://www.christianbookpreviews.com/christian-book-excerpt.php?isbn=0764225529

Dr. Norman Geisler clearly sets forth the reality of the existence of God: who He is. The author lays the foundation by explaining and describing the attributes and characteristics of God, among them His actuality and simplicity, life and immortality, unity and trinity. Dr. Geisler concludes this study by illustrating how we must respond to God’s attributes with heart, mind, and strength.

He then turns to what God does, or His activity: the creation of all things, the origin of spiritual creation, the sustenance of creation. The section culminates in a discussion of God’s relation to His creation.  –Bethany House

Part One: God (Theology Proper)
Chapter One: Introduction
Chapter Two: God’s Pure Actuality and Simplicity
Chapter Three: God’s Aseity and Necessity
Chapter Four: God’s Immutability and Eternality
Chapter Five: God’s Impassibility and Infinity
Chapter Six: God’s Immateriality and Immensity
Chapter Seven: God’s Omnipotence and Omnipresence
Chapter Eight: God’s Omniscience
Chapter Nine: God’s Wisdom and Light
Chapter Ten: God’s Majesty, Beauty, and Ineffability
Chapter Eleven: God’s Life and Immortality
Chapter Twelve: God’s Unity and Trinity
Chapter Thirteen: God’s Holiness and Righteousness
Chapter Fourteen: God’s Jealousy and Perfection
Chapter Fifteen: God’s Truthfulness and Goodness (Love)
Chapter Sixteen: God’s Mercy and Wrath
Chapter Seventeen: A Response to God’s Attributes
Part Two: Creation
Chapter Eighteen: Alternative Views on Creation
Chapter Nineteen: The Origin of Material Creation
Chapter Twenty: The Creation of Spiritual Creatures (Angels)
Chapter Twenty-One: The Sustenance of All Creation
Chapter Twenty-Two: God’s Transcendence Over and Immanence in Creation
Chapter Twenty-Three: God’s Sovereignty Over Creation
Chapter Twenty-Four: God’s Providence in Creation
Appendix One: Christology
Appendix Two: Biblical References to Creation
Appendix Three: Various Views on Origins
Appendix Four: Various Views of the “Days” of Genesis
Appendix Five: The Age of the Earth
Appendix Six: The Scientific Evidence for Creation
Appendix Seven: Pneumatology

Geisler, Norman L.: Systematic Theology, Volume Two: God, Creation. Minneapolis, MN : Bethany House Publishers, 2003, S. 9
Systematic Theology, Vol 3: Sin, Salvation (Bethany, 2004)
Systematic Theology, Vol. 3

In this volume, Dr. Norman Geisler examines the doctrines of sin and salvation. He begins with a discussion of human beings, covering the origin and nature of humanity. Next the elements of sin are studied, including sin’s origin, nature, effects, and, finally, defeat.


The second part continues with a thorough study of salvation, starting with salvation’s origin. This is followed by the theories of salvation, the nature of salvation, the evidence of salvation, and the assurance of salvation. He then examines the extent and exclusivity of salvation in regard to the theories of limited atonement, universalism, and pluralism, and the results of salvation in relation to infants and the heathen. Consideration of salvation’s condition and content close the study. – Bethany House

Part One: Humanity and Sin (Anthropology and Hamartiology)
Chapter One: The Origin of Human Beings
Chapter Two: The Nature of Human Beings
Chapter Three: The Origin of Sin
Chapter Four: The Nature of Sin
Chapter Five: The Effects of Sin
Chapter Six: The Defeat of Sin
Part Two: Salvation (Soteriology)
Chapter Seven: The Origin of Salvation
Chapter Eight: The Theories of Salvation
Chapter Nine: The Nature of Salvation
Chapter Ten: The Evidence of Salvation
Chapter Eleven: The Assurance of Salvation
Chapter Twelve: The Extent of Salvation (Limited or Unlimited Atonement)
Chapter Thirteen: The Extent of Salvation (Universalism)
Chapter Fourteen: The Exclusivity of Salvation (Pluralism)
Chapter Fifteen: The Results of Salvation (Infants and Heathen)
Chapter Sixteen: The Condition for Salvation
Chapter Seventeen: The Contents of Salvation
Appendix One: Does Human Life Begin at Conception?
Appendix Two: Does Human Life Begin at Implantation?
Appendix Three: Double-Predestination
Appendix Four: Was Jesus a Physical Descendant of Adam?
Appendix Five: Wesleyan Perfectionism

Geisler, Norman L.: Systematic Theology, Volume Three: Sin, Salvation. Minneapolis, MN : Bethany House Publishers, 2004, S. 9
Systematic Theology, Vol 4: Church, Last Things (Bethany, 2005)

In this volume, Dr. Norman Geisler explores the church and the last things, ecclesiology and eschatology. He begins with the church’s origin and then outlines its nature, government, and ordinances, addressing both the church universal and the church local while also examining spiritual gifts and the relation between church and state.

In part two’s remarkable presentation of time and eternity, Dr. Geisler expounds on the final resurrection, the intermediate and then final states of both the saved and the lost (heaven and hell), and the theories of purgatory and annihilationism. Then, turning specifically to biblical prophecy, he puts forth a basis for interpretational consistency before covering the Kingdom, the Covenants, the Second Coming, the Millennium, the Tribulation, and the Rapture.  – Bethany House

Part One: The Church: (Ecclesiology)
Chapter One: The Origin of the Church
Chapter Two: The Nature of the Universal Church
Chapter Three: The Nature of the Visible Church(es)
Chapter Four: The Government of the Visible Church
Chapter Five: The Ordinances of the Visible Church
Chapter Six: The Ministry of the Visible Church (Spiritual Gifts)
Chapter Seven: The Relationship of the Church to the State
Part Two: Last Things: (Eschatology)
Chapter Eight: The Intermediate State and the Resurrection
Chapter Nine: The Final State of the Saved (Heaven)
Chapter Ten: The Final State of the Lost (Hell)
Chapter Eleven: The Alleged Temporary State of the Saved (Purgatory)
Chapter Twelve: Annihilationism
Chapter Thirteen: The Interpretation of Prophecy
Chapter Fourteen: The Kingdom of God
Chapter Fifteen: The Covenants of God
Chapter Sixteen: The Second Coming and the Millennium
Chapter Seventeen: The Tribulation and the Rapture
Appendix One: Only the Apostles Spoke in Tongues at Pentecost
Appendix Two: Were Tongues a Real Language?
Appendix Three: Has the Gift of Miracles Ceased?
Appendix Four: Ultradispensationalism
Appendix Five: Does the Resurrection Body Have the Same Particles As Before Death?
Appendix Six: Reincarnation
Appendix Seven: The General Councils of the Church and the Development of Roman Catholicism
Appendix Eight: The Role of the New Testament Apostles

Geisler, Norman L.: Systematic Theology, Volume Four: Church, Last Things. Minneapolis, MN : Bethany House Publishers, 2005, S. 11
Also translated into Brazillian Portugese


Teologia Sistemática de Norman Geisler

Título: Teologia Sistemática
Autor: Norman Geisler
Editora: CPAD


O trabalho culminante de uma vida inteira dedicada ao estudo e pesquisa.
O Dr. Norman Geisler, nesta coleção, trata dos temas mais importantes da teologia sistemática. A teologia propriamente dita, a Bíblia, a criação, a doutrina de Deus, a Salvação, o Senhor Jesus Cristo, as Últimas Coisas serão tratados de forma clara e muito bem pesquisada, de modo que o leitor tenha em suas mãos, para pesquisa, o fruto de uma vida dedicada à teologia e a defesa da fé cristã.


Como o clímax e a síntese de décadas de ensino e escritos de Norman Geisler, esta obra inestimável despertará o interesse de todos que apreciam abordagens filosóficas, históricas e apologéticas da Teologia. Explicações e definições de termos-chave tornam esse texto acessível para uma ampla gama de leitores, começando pelos estudantes que iniciam na Teologia. Impressionante no seu fôlego e nos detalhes, os tópicos são apresentados de maneira lógica que estimula tanto o apredizado quanto à disseminação do conhecimento adquirido. Estamos diante de uma obra enciclopédica, que contém pérolas incontáveis em um texto agradável. E tudo isso reunido em uma só capa.
Gary R. Habernas
Mestre da Universidade Liberty


Em nossa época, são raros os estudiosos que respondem às objeções de críticos e céticos com a perícia do Dr. Norman Geisler. Para nós, felizmente, ele apresenta as evidências bíblicas e a análise dos temas de maneira clara e precisa, que lhe ajudará muito bem no seu estudo das doutrinas bíblicas.
Dr. John F. Ankerberg
Presidente do Instituto de Pesquisas Teológicas Ankerberg


Os melhores teólogos são aqueles que também se destacam na Filosofia. Só que neste caso, logicamente, nem sempre conseguimos compreender exatamente o que eles estão querendo dizer. Norman Geisler tem o dom singular de ser ao mesmo tempo um filósofo e um teólogo que lida com conceitos profundos numa maneira que o homem simples consegue compreender com facilidade. Conseqüentemente, esta teologia sistemática não ficará somente na escrivaninha dos estudiosos, mas também na do pastor, e freqüentará também a mesa de café de muitos leitores leigos.
Dr. Paige Petterson

Presidente do Seminário Teológico Batista do Sudeste dos E.U.A

Em uma era que coloca a sua ênfase na especialização, Norman Geisler é um exemplo de pessoa que apresenta a rara e preciosa habilidade de reunir as três necessárias para se exercer a Teologia Sistemática: formação filosófica minuciosa, facilidade nas diversas categorias de teologia, e a capacidade de fazer a exegese do texto bíblico. Não conheço ninguém que reúna estas três capacidades melhor do que ele, e o Volume I, juntamente com os demais, é fruto de uma vida que Geisler apresenta como um comunicador, o resultado é verdadeiramente marcante. Estou muito feliz em, finalmente, ver esta Teologia Sistemática ser colocada à disposição da igreja.
J. P. Moreland
Distinto Mestre em Filosofia, Faculdade de Teologia Talbott, Universidade de Biola


Tendo sido grandemente beneficiado com o estudo da Teologia sob a orientação do Professor Norman Geisler há cerca de vinte anos, desejei por algum tempo ver sua vasta pesquisa teológica compilada na forma de uma Teologia Sistemática. Com a publicação deste volume, o meu desejo está se tornando realidade! Para as pessoas que valorizam o pensar minucioso, a lógica firme, a justa ponderação e as perspectivas teológicas, esta Teologia Sistemática se constitui em leitura indispensável.
Dr. Ron Rhodes
Presidente do Ministério Reasoning From Scriptures


Um trabalho profundo de uma das melhores mentes teológicas e filosóficas de nosso tempo.
Dr. Ravi Zacharias
Presidente de Ravi Zacharias International Ministries


Tremendo! Teologia Sistemática do Dr. Geisler é um livro que não deve faltar em nenhuma biblioteca. Há poucas obras tão exaustivas na abordagem ou tão eruditas na apresentação comparáveis a esta. Eis um livro ao qual você deve dedicar a sua total atenção.
Josh MacDowell
Orador, autor de Evidência que Exige um Veredicto e Mais que um Carpinteiro.


Dr. Norman Geisler, ex-reitor do Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, em Charlotte, Carolina do Norte, é autor e co-autor de mais de sessenta livros e de centenas de artigos. É orador e participa de debates a nível nacional e internacional. O Dr. Geisler possui bacharelado em Ciências Humanas (B.A) e mestrado em Ciências Humanas (M.A) pela Wheaton Colege, bacharelado em Teologia (Th.B) pela William Tyndale College e doutorado em Filosofia (Ph.D) pela Loyola University de Chicago.

From God to Us: How we got our Bible (2012)



The original edition of From God to Us was published in 1974 and has since sold over 78,000 copies.  It was an abridgement to the Geisler and Nix classic A General Introduction to the Bible(which weighs in at over 700 pages).   This 2012 revision of From God to Us brings it up to date and expands it from 255 pages to 412 pages.  This major revision is expected to take the place of A General Introduction to the Bible.  From God to Us is the only book of its kind in print, covering the inspiration, canonization, transmission, and translations of the Bible.

The 2012 edition is available as a paperback and an eBook at:
ChristianBook and Amazon and Moody Publishers.

The 2013 edition (very slight revision of the 2012 edition with a few minor corrections) is also available as PDF format e-book atBastion Books.
The Bible was written in multiple languages by dozens of authors whose lives spanned a period of more than fifteen hundred years. How did it all come together? Best-selling authors Norman Geisler and William Nix thoroughly answer this question and many more in this revised and expanded edition of a classic which has sold more than 78,000 copies. Helpful charts, photos, and indices have been added, rendering this book ideally suited for Bible students, pastors, and professors.

Major topics addressed include: theories of inspiration, the process of canonization, major manuscripts and recent discoveries, textual criticism, Greek and Latin translations, and modern English translations. The entire field of general biblical introduction is covered.

Where did the Bible come from? How do we know the right books are in the Bible? Does the Bible contain errors? What are the oldest copies we have of the Bible? How do we know that the Bible hasn’t been changed over the years? Why are there so many translations of the Bible, and which one should I use? These are just some of the important questions about the Bible that are discussed in this book. Understanding basic facts about the origin of the Bible is essential for every Christian, but it can also be confusing and difficult. Here, two well-known scholars, authors of a more technical book, A General Introduction to the Bible, explain simply and clearly these basic facts. Inspiration, the biblical canon, major manuscripts, textual criticism, early translations, and modern versions are some of the major topics discussed. Careful explanations of important points are given throughout, as the entire field of biblical introduction is covered. Completely updated and revised edition of the 1974 work (more than 78,000 copies sold). Helpful charts have been added, along with an index of subjects, persons, and Scripture. This book is ideally suited for Bible students, pastors, and professors. While writing for readers without previous training, the authors do not gloss over difficult and complex issues when they arise. The nature of inspiration, the extent of the canon, and the usefulness of modern versions are all clearly discussed. The authors write: “The chain of communication from God to us is strong. It has several solid links: inspiration, collection, transmission, and translations. The strength of these links provide the contemporary Christian with the moral certitude that the Spirit-inspired original text of Scripture has been providentially preserved by God so that for all practical purposes the Bible in our hands is the infallible and inerrant word of God.”

The older version of From God to Us is available in paperback and Kindle edition here.

From God to Us is also available as a DVD lecture set (12 DVDs with Powerpoint presentations) at http://NGIM.org.

You can still order a hardback copy of General Introduction to the Bible from here:http://www.amazon.com/General-Introduction-Bible-Norman-Geisler/dp/0802429165/ref=sr_1_21?ie=UTF8&qid=1331407599&sr=8-21

Also note that we may eventually sell both the original version of General Introduction to the Bible and the revised 2012 version of From God to Us in ebook formats at http://bastionbooks.com.   We *might* possibly even eventually release an updated version of General Introduction to the Bible at bastion books.

The Jesus Quest: The Danger From Within

ISBN = 9781628394658


This work examines the historical and philosophical strengths and/or weaknesses of current evangelical approaches espousing some forms of post-modernistic historiography and its resultant search for the “historical Jesus.” It demonstrates the marked undermining impact these efforts have had on the biblical text, especially the Gospels, as well as inerrancy issues. It compares the Jesus Seminar’s approach with current evangelical practices of searching in terms of their evidential apologetic impact on the trustworthiness of the Gospels. A number of well-known, contemporary evangelical scholars are involved in the so-called “Third Quest” for the historical Jesus. This book raises serious questions about such an endeavor.


Dr. Joseph M. Holden, President, Veritas Evangelical Seminary
Dr. Richard Land, President, Southern Evangelical Seminary
Dr. John MacArthur, The Master’s Seminary
Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Dr. L. Paige Patterson, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
Table of Contents & Forewords by Seminary Presidents


Norman L. Geisler, Ph.D., Chancellor, Veritas Evangelical Seminary; Distinguished Professor of  Apologetics and Theology
F. David Farnell, Ph.D., Senior Professor of New Testament, The Master’s Seminary
Richard G. Howe, Ph.D., Professor of Philosophy and Apologetics, Southern Evangelical Seminary
Thomas A. Howe, Ph.D., Professor of Bible and Biblical Languages, Southern Evangelical Seminary
William E. Nix, Ph.D., Professor of Historical and Theological Studies, Veritas Evangelical Seminary
William C. Roach, Ph.D. candidate, Co-Author of Defending Inerrancy (2013)
Dennis M. Swanson, D.Min., Vice President for Library and Educational Assessment


Video: http://youtu.be/aHPcLsyQkco