Greg Koukl Quotes - January 2013

"The law brings death, the spirit gives life." Greg Koukl This was in reference to his talk about what he thought of the movie Les Miserables. It had a parallel to some theology in parts. "Questions of meaning have no place in a materialistic universe." In a materialistic worldview, only the "how" questions matter. There is no reason to ask the questions of "why." "When words lose their meaning, people lose their lives." Not his original quote or idea, but Greg was talking about the idea and it was a good one that we see playing out.

Video 1 of 12 - Greg Koukl and John Baker Debate over whether or not moral truths exist.

Greg Koukl in this part of the debate, in my opinion has already won the debate. He lays out very obvious things, hard to deny, that show a person they do obviously believe in moral truths, rights and wrong. There is simply no denying it. Greg seems to come out of the gate winning, and it made me immediately wonder what Professor John Baker will do with this.

Video 2 of 12 in debate over moral truths existing between Koukl and Baker

Video 3 of 12, Greg Koukl and Professor John Baker from Calgary, debating over whether moral truths exit.

I find it interesting that Professor John Baker makes it clear he isn't denying evil in this part of the debate. That is fascinating because it shows us he comes right out and admits that moral truths exist. He says that Evil exists, which is a moral "call" to make.

He carries on, when I could stay awake (not a put down, I fell asleep 3 times during his slide projections), about things that aren't proving whether or not moral truths exist. This reminds me currently of what I have observed going on in my country, the United States with politicians and people. They can sometimes talk a lot about things that are not the point really, and people don't think well enough to even notice they are not saying something amazing, or just missing the points entirely. Its very frustrating, in fact one of the most depressing things I observe in life, that people don't really want to discuss the things that really matter at all.

At any rate, John Baker proves he affirms there is evil indeed, while claiming to prove his side of the debate, which I do not see at all. I am trying to be fair here. We begin to see that Greg will have to deal with a person that doesn't want to just discuss the facts of whether or not moral truths exist at all. Its gonna be tough!

Video 4 of 12 in Debate between Koukl and Baker on Moral Truth Existing

Video 5 of 12 of debate betwwn Koukl and Baker

I notice in this video that Professor John Baker won't answer the real questions being put to him. He also seems to be taking up valuable time in giving the non answers. He then seemed to turn to twisting the questions, even rewording them then answering them, and seemed to be very purposely missing the points.

Greg Koukl was too nice, one could say, and its unfortunate because if he had not been so nice, then they would likely have used that against him. Professor John Baker doesn't realize he has already lost the argument/debate, in my opinion, yet continues on in talking rather slow like a teacher in a classroom full of kids.

I have seen this kind of what I will call a tactic, before. It appeals to the group in the audience around them, to make the judgements on things, using sheer "side taking." He knows some will likely not listen to the actual debate, the actual words and reasonings being given to make their call, as much as who supports their own held worldview.

6 of 12 in Videos of Debate between Koukl and Baker

Video 7 of 12 in debate between Greg Koukl and John Baker

Greg makes some great points in this video 7 of 12. John Baker, can hardly be heard every time he speaks, so glad he addressed it here.

8 of 12 in debate between Baker and Koukl

I can't believe that John Baker calls Greg's point of view or points incoherent, when it appears to be the other way around. He isn't addressing the main point at all.

Baker goes on to suggest that there is nothing really beautiful or ugly in the world, those are just our projections! As if saying so could make that true, if it even made sense to begin with! How do you project something like that onto another thing anyway? Baker didn't explain how, and I think partly why is that there is no way to explain it. I find Baker to be grasping desperately to make his points, but not doing very well.

Good for Greg to point out the incoherence of John's actual points. He makes so much more logical sense. You can't just assert a point, and make it count as a reason to justify one's side. You have to actually give good reasons that are coherent and logical and ring true. Koukl has done this ongoing, Baker has not throughout, in my opinion.

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Koukl makes the point that maybe the feeling of guilt that is observed and felt universally, is there because we maybe actually are guilty. Christianity gives an answer for that, by the way. It would line up with the idea of there being a moral law. Is the right answer to a universal observation to play games or assign things like that its just a social construction? Koukl suggests its true moral guilt, and the answer that would "right things" would be forgiveness.

Baker uses the point of John Stuart Mill, and his 'crazy idea' that women are equals with men. Then he brings up the idea of a bi racial relationship as examples equal to the horrors Greg brought up, of genocide etc. He compares same sex marriages to parallel the horrors Koukl brings up. He, Baker, says he finds it disturbing.....

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12 of 12 - FInal Video of Debate between John Baker and Greg Koukl

Gred Koukl, Live and Recorded Videos of Radio Shows

I was so excited to see that Greg Koukl could be found streaming live on USTREAM!! I am familiar with Ustream now for some time, and think its a great way for people to Greg in action. Every Sunday he has his live radio show broadcasts, and you can get them in many forms, besides live. Here is a link to his USTREAM radio show page, so you can go back and see him discussing many issues.

You can also chat live if he allows that during the session. Its a really neat avenue to learn more about Greg and his views and reasoning. I have watched a couple segments there myself. Free, and fun too.

Starlight and the Age of the Universe - Article from Greg Koukl

This is an article from Greg Koukl that I appreciated regarding Starlight and the age of the Universe. When it comes to the debate or argument regarding young earth vs. old earth, Christians and others need to be aware of the implications on each side. I really liked how he laid this out, even if it may seem a bit harsh at times to the YEC, because I think they need to realize, from a Christian point of view, how silly it can sound at times. The more I learn, the more I realize that some things make more sense than others, and its all God's world anyway. The truths of His world, universe, creation basically WILL line up with the reality that He is. This all, regardless of what we think and our own interpreations. Whether true or false, just believed, or trying to force what has been forced onto us by those we respect or listen to.

Greg Koukl - Starlight and the Age of the Universe

"A young-universe creationist is in a very difficult spot. If he holds that God created the light in transit, he also has to hold that we have no way of knowing that anything further than 10,000 light years away actually exists. We can't see it. We're not seeing it; we're seeing an image that God created in transit. The light from it won't reach us for a billion years.

You see, the argument from young-earthers regarding star light is that God not only created the galaxies in deep space, but He also created all the light between that star and earth. This is why we can see them now even though the universe is young.

My question is, how do you know the stars are really there? You don't see the light of anything that existed. You're seeing an image created in transit of an event-- watch this-- that never took place.

If all we're seeing is an image that God created in transit, then the only way we're going to see the actual thing that exists is if we wait around another billion years for the light of the actual star to reach us. Who of us believes the Lord will tarry that long? Not a billion years. Which means we'll never see it, will we? We'll never see what God actually created, not the thing itself.

Doesn't that throw into question the existence of anything in outer space at all? Because, in fact, since we'll never see the thing itself-- and what we see is not the thing, but an image God created in transit-- well then, why would God ever need to create the thing in the first place? The image would be fully adequate for God's purpose. The only thing God would have to create is the light image, because we'd never see the thing itself anyway. But doesn't the Scripture seem to indicate that what we see are the very things that God created?

You see, this "God created light in transit" view is kind of misleading, because we think of it like the steady glow of a light bulb. There's a light bulb way out there in space and just a steady glow in between. God could put that glow from me to it and I could see the glow.

But the images we actually see in outer space-- that, according to young earthers, were allegedly created in transit by God-- are images of turbulent events, not just a steady glow.

Let me give you an illustration. Astronomers looking through their telescopes see a super nova explosion a billion light years away. (Super nova is when a star explodes and sends its material spewing out into space.) What exist now, at this moment, are the random bits of the old star which, allegedly, is the condition God actually created six to ten thousand years ago.

What this means is that the star the astronomers saw explode never existed. The super nova never happened. This seems to suggest that God created the illusion of the universe and not the universe itself, because that which allegedly exists, we will never see. That which allegedly exists, we'll never see, and that which we actually see never existed.

If that's the case, then I think it's fair to ask ourselves what else we think exists, but doesn't? How much more of the world is just an illusion created by God? How do we know what is real and what is not?

At this point, you can't fall back on the Bible, for two reasons. First, the Bible seems to say that God created actual heavenly bodies, not just images to aid us in some way. Yet in this view, that is not the case. Second, even the words on the pages of my Bible reach my mind through light images. Why should I trust that what I see looking down when I'm reading is real when I can't trust what I see gazing up at the night sky?

Doesn't this begin to create a skepticism about the existence of real things? A skepticism that could collapse into solipsism, the theory that the self is the only thing that can be known: I'm the only one that exists, and my perceptions.

This view, then, undermines all observational disciplines, including science and history. Because we don't know if we're seeing the thing itself or merely a fabricated image, an illusion of something that doesn't exist.

Let me say it again. What's really there, we never see. What we do see was never there. There were no super nova explosions billions of years ago. Those things never happened. The only thing we see are images of explosions that never took place.

This would mean that virtually everything I see in the heavens-- anything outside our solar system-- isn't real. It's simply a light image of events that never took place, an illusion.

Why make stars so far away that we can't see them? Why make events appear to our eyes that never happened? There's a simple word for it. It's called deception. That's what God would be guilty of if that's really the way it happened.

As an old-earther, I'm going to say that evidence for an ancient universe is in the heavens because scientific testing shows us that these stars are far away and their light takes a long time to reach us. Therefore, if we're seeing light from those stars, and they're a billion light years away, then those stars must have existed for at least a billion years.

The counter from a young-earther is, No, wait, you don't understand. God actually created the light in transit. If God created everything in six days, then He had to create the star, too, because it does say He created the heavens and the earth. I'm thinking this is what they're going to hold.

So, He created the star and the earth and the light in between, which sounds fine if you're thinking of the star like a light bulb that is giving off a steady glow. But what we have in the galaxies are not just simply light bulbs giving off a steady glow, and you have this undifferentiated stream of glow flowing through the universe that God creates. Rather, what we have are light images of specific events in the universe, like super nova explosions, for example. So, if we see a super nova explosion that appears to be a billion light years away, this suggests, from my view, that it actually happened a billion years ago.

But a young-earther is going to have to say, No, that image is just something God created in transit. He just created it. It didn't really happen because there was no "billion years ago." Instead, the only thing that God actually created are all these little bits and pieces floating around in the universe that look like they were the result of that explosion that never happened.

You call that deception? That's my point. God doesn't do that, I suspect.

There's one other point to that, too. If this is the case, actually-- if the earth is only six to ten thousand years old-- then nothing outside of our solar system...

[tape ended here]

What a young-earther is going to have to say is that the star never exploded because it's just a light image that was created in transit. It looks like it exploded a billion years ago, but there was nothing here a billion years ago. What we actually have here now are just bits and pieces floating around. And what we see that looks like a billion years ago is not the super nova that exploded and gave us the bits and pieces we have now, but instead is simply an image that God made in between.

My point is simply that we have observational evidence that seems to indicate an ancient universe. And the solution-- the way young-earthers would get around that-- creates an absolutely unacceptable situation in which we'd have to admit that all galactic phenomenon are simply images and illusions created by God. And we have no way of knowing whether things actually exist out there today that somehow correspond with those phenomenon, because we can't see those things yet. It will be a billion years before we actually see those things.

I think that this view leads to an absolutely untenable situation and encourages incredible skepticism. Because if that's the case, and what I see are simply images created in transit, then I have no confidence that there's anything beyond those images. Because, actually, God didn't need anything more than the images. He doesn't need the thing itself, because we won't see the thing itself for a billion years."

This is a transcript of a commentary from the radio show "Stand to Reason," with Gregory Koukl. It is made available to you at no charge through the faithful giving of those who support Stand to Reason. Reproduction permitted for non-commercial use only. ©1997 Gregory Koukl
Initial depicting Boethius, teaching his students from folio 4r of a manuscript of the Consolation of Philosophy (Italy?, 1385)

Moral truth

Just because cultures differ on moral viewpoints doesn't mean that objective moral truth is a fiction. In logic this is called a non-sequitur; the conclusion doesn't follow from the premises.
Observations about the practices of groups of people, even if accurate, don't translate into valid conclusions about the true nature of morality per se. How does it follow that because each group thinks it's right, therefore no group is correct? The simple fact of disagreement on morality doesn't lead to the conclusion there is no moral truth. This confuses the epistemological question (the accurate knowledge of objective values) with the ontological question (the existence of objective values).
Currently there are conflicting views on many things. The fact that there is disagreement, however, doesn't mean that no view could be correct. The same is true with differences of opinion on morality." Gregory Koukl

Quotes having to do with God

"Omnipotence doesn’t mean that God can do anything. The concept of omnipotence has to do with power, not ability per se. In fact, there are many things God can’t do. He can’t make square circles. He can’t create a morally free creature who couldn’t choose evil. He can’t instantly create a sixty-year-old man (not one that looks sixty, but one that is sixty). None of these, though, have to do with power. Instead, they are logically contradictory, and therefore contrary to God’s rational nature." Gregory Koukl

Theology and Science at odds?

"Those who hold that science, by nature, cannot be integrated with theological views about the nature of the world, are out of step with a long history of science in which this arbitrary, modern distinction was not made. Most of the founders of modern scientific disciplines were Christians whose world-view was thoroughly integrated with their scientific practice. For example:
*George Cuvier (1769-1832)--Great French naturalist, founded comparative anatomy

*Carolus Linnaeus (1707-78)--Founder of modern taxonomy, the scientific classification of plants and animals

*Blaise Pascal (1623-62)--The French mathematical prodigy, founded modern probability theory, advanced differential calculus and modern hydraulics, and invented of one of the first mechanical calculators. He was also the author of the famous argument for God called “Pascal’s Wager.”

*Michael Faraday (1791-1867)--Discovered electromagnetic induction and developed the first dynamo

*Gregor Mendel (1822-84)--Established the foundational tenets of modern genetics

*Copernicus (1473-1543)--Laid the foundation of modern astronomy with heliocentric theory of planetary motion

Science and Christianity at odds? That would have surprised these men, and a host of others including, by the way, Sir Isaac Newton." Greg Koukl
Picture: By Godfrey Kneller, Sir Isaac Newton, 1689

Quotes having to do with Jesus

"If you talk about God, everyone smiles and nods approval. Mention Jesus, though, and sparks fly. Jesus is God with a face, not the fill-in-the-blank variety we conform to our own tastes. He can't be twisted, distorted, and stuffed in our back pocket. That bothers people." Greg Koukl

Quotes having to do with Darwinian Evolution

"A frequent response to the evidence against the origin of life by Darwinian evolution is, “All the difficulties with the evolution of life only apply to life as we know it. But what about other kinds of life?”
“Life as we know it,” is the only life we know of. It is unscientific, unreasonable, and unfair to postulate some separate form of life that’s unheard of simply because the evidence against the evolution of life from non-life leads to conclusions we don’t like. It’s an example of what I call “phantom argument,” invoking unknown facts to refute known ones. Just as Christians have been faulted for invoking a “God of the gaps,” this alternative becomes “science of the gaps,” or more accurately “science fiction of the gaps.”" Gregory Koukl

"If Darwinism is true, then there is no purpose or meaning to life, there is no morality, there's no qualitative difference between humans and animals, there's no life after death, and there's no purpose to human history. Now, are you trying to tell me that it doesn't really matter if people believe we evolved or not?" Gregory Koukl


"If relativism is true, then all moral categories are meaningless. Any attempt at moral discourse is reduced to incoherence. Therefore, the only course of action truly consistent with moral relativism is complete silence. If you view all morality as relative and you're consistent, you can't ever make a moral recommendation."
Greg Koukl

"A person can wax eloquent with you in a discussion on moral relativism, but he will complain when somebody cuts in front of him in line. He'll object to the unfair treatment he gets at work and denounce injustice in the legal system. He'll criticize crooked politicians who betray the public trust and condemn intolerant fundamentalists who force their moral views on others. Yet each of these objections is a meaningless concept in the twisted world of moral relativism." Greg Koukl

Regarding Relativism and the Problem of Evil:
"The approach many relativists take at this point is confused. First, they say that the Holocaust was evil and ask why God would allow such depravity? Later, when the tables turn and their own behavior is in question, they argue that morality is merely a matter of opinion. This reduces their earlier objection to: "How could a good God allow things that are contrary to my opinion?" or, to put it more bluntly, "I can't believe in the existence of a God who would disagree with me."" Greg Koukl

Is the Bible in error? Some thoughts from Greg Koukl

"A common attack on the Bible goes like this: Man wrote the Bible. Man is imperfect. Therefore, the Bible is imperfect and not inspired by God. This attempt fails for two reasons.

First, it’s not valid (the conclusion doesn’t follow logically) because the 1st premise subtly presumes what it’s trying to prove, that the Bible isn’t inspired by God. What’s at issue is whether natural man is solely responsible for the Bible or whether God worked through men and inspired the text. Since the first premise presumes the conclusion, the approach is circular.

Second, the argument is self-defeating. Consider this reply.

"Your argument is that man wrote the Bible and man is flawed, therefore, the Bible is flawed. If that’s true then it’s also the case that your argument, offered by you, a fallible human being, is therefore flawed. And if your point of view is flawed, then why should I believe it?"

It doesn’t follow that if man is capable of error, then he always does err. If so, then this argument itself would have to be false, because it also comes from an errant human. Taken at face value, this objection is self-defeating; it commits suicide.

It’s not going to be enough to dismiss the Bible simply by noting that "man wrote it." This, in itself, is not a liability." Gregory Koukl

"If you first establish that the Biblical record can be trusted, then the second problem—human involvement is irrelevant. If God inspires it then it doesn’t matter if men or monkeys did the writing; they’ll still write exactly what God intends.

Another way of stating it: God can’t err; the Bible is God’s Word; therefore, the Bible can’t err, even if men are involved." Gregory Koukl

Belief and Unbelief, demanding proofs from God

"The skeptic says, “If Jesus would only show Himself to me—if God would just work one dramatic miracle—then I’d believe in Him.” This kind of person overestimates himself. Even miracles can be denied or dismissed.

During Jesus’ passion week in Jerusalem, he was called to nearby Bethany because his friend Lazarus was dying. By the time Jesus arrived, Lazarus was gone. In a dramatic scene Jesus called him forth from the tomb alive, still wrapped in burial cloths.

This was a spectacular miracle performed in public for all to see. What was the response of the Jewish leaders? They plotted Jesus’ death. "This man is performing many signs. If we let Him go on like this, all men will believe in Him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation." (John 11:47-48)

But Jesus wasn’t the only one they wanted to eliminate. They also had to get rid of another piece of evidence: "But the chief priests took council that they might put to death Lazarus also; because on account of him many of the Jews were going away, and were believing in Jesus." (John 12:10-11)

Incredible! Instead of falling to their knees in response to this obvious display of Messianic power, they conspire to kill the very man whose public resurrection was proof positive of their error.

This is unbelievable unbelief.

You think if God just did a miracle it would change your rebellious heart? Don’t count on it. Jesus said, “If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone rises from the dead” (Luke 16:31).

As one wag put it, a skeptic with such an experience would not seek God, he’d seek a psychiatrist.

Oh so true. The sun melts butter…but it hardens clay."

Some general quotes from Greg Koukl

"It's inhuman to be mute in the face of egregious evil, to be silent in the presence of flagrant injustice." Greg Koukl

"If whatever you’re depending on for security and significance can be here today and gone tomorrow, then you’re in trouble. You’re leaning on a rubber crutch. And that’s not funny. Yes, Christians lean on Christ. Call it a crutch if you want, but our crutch can hold us. One person put it this way: A Christian is one who has come to the end of his rope. He admits his deep need. He knows he’s crippled in many ways, and needs help. When you finally come to your senses and realize you’re deeply crippled and dying, Christ isn’t “just” a crutch—He’s an iron lung." Greg Koukl

"Sidelining a position simply because its moral foundation is religious is inherently un-American and unjust, and we have a civic duty to resist this practice."
Greg Koukl

"Everybody has a point of view they think is right and everybody judges at some point or another. The Christian gets pigeon-holed as the judgmental one, but everyone else is judging, too. It’s an inescapable consequence of believing in any kind of morality."
Greg Koukl

Abortion, Unborn Human Persons

"If you were once the unborn child your mother carried, then you have to accept an undeniable truth: killing that child through abortion would have killed you. Not a potential you. Not a possible you. Not a future you. Abortion would have killed you.

This is why abortion is tragic. It kills more than a human body. It kills a valuable human being." GK, Precious Unborn Human Persons

Gregory Koukl

"Clearly, not all holocausts are equal. The numerous examples of ethnic cleansing in this century are made more egregious by the additional suffering, loss, and assault on human dignity they entail. Still, the destruction of over a million unborn children each year is a holocaust of significant magnitude simply because valuable human beings were wantonly destroyed." Gregory Koukl

"Abortion involves killing and discarding something that's alive. Whether it's right or not to take the life of any living being depends entirely upon the answer to one question: What kind of being is it? The answer one gives is pivotal, the deciding element that trumps all other considerations.

Let me put the issue plainly. If the unborn is not a human person, no justification for abortion is necessary. However, if the unborn is a human person, no justification for abortion is adequate." Gregory Koukl

Regarding abortions for rape and incest:
"If we allowed an abortion under those circumstances it would send a terrible message, that when someone reminds you of something extremely painful you can eliminate them. But you can't kill another human being just because their existence makes your life physically or emotionally burdensome.

If I had a law on my desk that restricted abortion except in the cases of rape or incest I would sign it, even though I don't think rape and incest ought to be exceptions. I'd just rather save 98% of the children whose lives are taken through abortion rather than none." Gregory Koukl

U.S. Founding Fathers

"The phrase "Founding Fathers" is a proper noun. It refers to a very specific group of people, the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention. Yes, there were other important players, like Jefferson, whose thinking deeply influenced the shape of our nation and who were not in attendance, but the 55 Fathers make up the core.

The denominational affiliation of these men is a matter of public record. Among the delegates were 28 Episcopalians, 8 Presbyterians, 7 Congregationalists, 2 Lutherans, 2 Dutch Reformed, 2 Methodists, 2 Roman Catholics, 1 unknown and only 3 deists--Williamson, Wilson and Franklin, this at a time when church membership entailed a sworn public confession of biblical faith.(John Eidsmoe, Christianity and the Constitution, (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1987), p. 43.)

This is a very revealing tally. It means that the members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were almost all Christians, 51 of 55--a full 93%."

Greg Koukl

Tolerance and Intolerance

"Most of what passes for tolerance today is intellectual cowardice, a fear of intelligent engagement. Those who brandish the word “intolerant” are unwilling to be challenged by other views, to grapple with contrary opinions, or even to consider them. It’s easier to hurl an insult—“you intolerant bigot”—than to confront the idea and either refute it or be changed by it. In the modern era, “tolerance” has become intolerance."

Click here to see full thought as its very interesting

Quotes having to do with evil, God, etc

"When we raise children, we desire them to do good, but we realize they may turn out to be bad. So what do we do? Chain them to their beds or lock them in a closet to insure they stay out of mischief? That would be barbaric,

In the same way, God has dignified man by giving him choices. He's gifted him with the privilege of making his own decisions. Man's choice to do good, to live in conformity with God's desires, is only meaningful if there is an alternate choice to do evil. God won't chain man to the bed or lock him in a closet. That would be cruel."

Some atheist quotes from Koukl

"Is atheism an emotional crutch, wishful thinking?.....Instead of inventing God, have atheists invented non-God? Have they invented atheism to escape some of the frightening implications of God's existence? Think about it."

Greg Koukl Blog

I am a fan of Greg Koukl, and have been for the last several years. I see many quotes and quote blogs online about many people. For someone that is such a great thinker, seems very fair and reasonable and a great philosopher, I want to dedicate this blog to him. I think what he has to say is very important. This is just a small sampling, and I have not exhausted all he has written, so more is to come. Be sure to check back.

Thank you for stopping by, and if you have any thoughts or questions, please let me know. Enjoy getting to know Greg Koukl better, and also be aware he has a great radio show, in question and answer form, every Sunday afternoon. He takes callers questions. I have learned a great deal from him and am very thankful. He has a website called Stand to Reason, with a great many articles covering many topics.

Picture: Daniel Huntington, Philosophy and Christian Art