Thursday, August 17, 2017

Thoughts About the Tragedy in Charlottesville

By Rob Lundberg

This past weekend—both Saturday and Sunday is a bit of a blur for me due to my job schedule and environment, which puts me only hearing about the Charlottesville rally and the the tragic incidents that occurred there this past weekend.  While I am still piecing things together, what I do understand is that white nationalists that include neo-Nazis and other hate groups staged a rally in Charlottesville this weekend. 

And the perception is that it was a rally intended to protest the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee.  Confederate flags were flying high at the protest. Then, in the early afternoon, some “thug” rammed his car into some of the counter-protesters, killing one woman and injuring dozens of others.

Friday, August 11, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: What is a Worldview and Why it Makes a Difference

Everybody has a worldview, but only 10% of the Christians truly embrace a biblical worldview. This is two part series on the subject of worldviews. In this program, Rob answers "what is a worldview and why it makes a difference" In our program we are going to discuss this whole concept of a worldview, what it is and how your and my worldview makes a difference in a post-Christian culture witness.

This is a first of a two part series on worldviews. Next week, I will be laying out for us the Christian worldview, and what it means to have a biblical worldview.




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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Your Worldview Makes World of Difference

A few years ago, the Barna Research Group came out with a startling statistic showing only 10 percent of Americans, who profess to be Bible believing Christians,  actually hold what is to be considered a biblical worldview. Even more startling is the fact that the American Culture and Faith Institute did a survey where the findings showed that 7 out of 10 Americans who call themselves Christians, but relatively few were able to answer fundamental questions about the Bible and what Christians believe.

What I would like to share in this post is something that I think is very important, if we are going to impact our culture for the Christ with the gospel. That is understanding that our worldview in general, and living out a biblical worldview in particular which makes a difference and has a direct impact on our witness for Christ.[1]

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Guest Post: Reality Check. Theism or Naturalism?

By David Russell
Besides being complicated.  Reality, in my experience, is usually odd.  
Its not neat, not obvious, not what you expect.  C.S. Lewis
One of the biggest hurdles to jump while trying to discuss ideas is thought consistency.  In this post modern world many have relaxed the mind muscle and grown complacent, apathetic, even offended by discussing the depths of reality and the big questions of life.  I am often bewildered by the inconsistency some new age social justice warriors put forth.  They fight for equal rights and yet can’t justify why they should be equal or even where those rights come from.  They rail for tolerance while being intolerant to any that disagree.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Pope Francis Says "We're All Children of God" If He Says It, then It Must be True. Right? Not Quite!

A few days ago I saw an undated article on one of the Apologetics boards to which I am periodically contributing my posts. I will be sharing this post on there as a response to a statement made by Pope Francis about how God is the Father of all of us.  
Unfortunately, many people who concur with the papacy's proclamations, blindly think that whenever the pope says something on religious matters then it must be true. But is the pope right?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: Why Christian Students Fall Away from Their Faith and What We Can Do to Help Them

In just a few weeks, many parents will sending their college student off to the most liberal battlegrounds on the American soil. Have our Christian kids been equipped and made ready to confront the challenges to their faith?  

What happens when your student goes off to college and has their faith challenged by a professor or their peers? They can go quiet insulating themselves. They become isolated so that their faith quits. Or they can quicken their faith by getting trained to defend their faith. 

Join us as we look into this battlefront and how we can assist you in helping your students get ready for action.  Learn more in this episode.


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Monday, July 17, 2017

What Influences Our Kids to Walk Away?

One of the main reasons I believe apologetics is necessary for the church is due to the church not  addressing the exodus of our young people in the church. I don't want to sound accusatory right out of the gate, but I am not sure the church thinks there is a problem. As I shared with you in my last post, there is a rampant anti-intellectualism in the church across America, and we are seeing the manifestation of that anti-intellectualism through a high casualty count that I will address in a moment with our kids going off to college. 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: Understanding and Responding to the Anti-Intellectualism in the Church

If you were to be asked why you're a Christian, could you answer that question without giving your personal testimony? What about your belief in the Bible? Could you defend why it is God's word in an intelligent manner before skeptical inquisition?

What is anti-intellectualism and how did the church get here? What are the dangers and the pitfalls for both the individual believer and the church?

Join us for this week's episode of the Real Issue Podcast where we tackle these questions and more. This podcast springboards off of the blog posting from this ministry.  So get ready to examine your faith and stretch you mind as we talk about the reasons for God and why Christianity needs a robust forensic faith.


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Saturday, July 8, 2017

Anti-Intellectualism in the American Church is Not a Spiritual Gift

Over the past few months, even years, I have been wrestling with a gnawing issue on why the church is not amenable to apologetics. This is evidenced by the overwhelming anti-intellectualism that has been plaguing the church ever since 1859 when Darwin wrote his On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life as well as other influences.  

This post is by no means going to be exhaustive, and I will be referring to others who have cogently written on this same subject. We share in this burden and are seeking ways to show that "ignorance" about why we believe is not a spiritual gift, nor is it found in Scripture.[1]

Thursday, July 6, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast Are Apologetics and Evangelism Necessary to Reach the American Culture and the Church?

There are a lot of questions about whether or not apologetics is compatible with today's evangelistic efforts in our post Christian culture. Does and can the Holy Spirit use reason to draw a person to saving knowledge of Christ?  How does apologetics interact with today's evangelism? Find out the answer to these questions and more on this episode.


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Thursday, June 29, 2017

A Christian Response to the Atheist No Free Will Rant

One good question to ask an atheist is if they believe they have a "free will." This question will present one of two responses.  It will present either the answer in the affirmative, which means that you are dealing with someone who is more of an agnostic. The response to the negative is indicative that your skeptical conversant is more along the lines of embracing a scientism.  

That being said, atheists who reject the idea that they have a free will are what as known as eliminative materialists. Eliminative materialism is the view that denies the existence of mental entities. Seeking an ideal scientistic mindset, they argue that an ideal scientific account of the world would contain no reference to material entities such as "beliefs" or "sensations." So all that is present, they argue,

Friday, June 23, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: Are Morals Absolute or Relative?

Culture seems to think that the creed of today is that morals are not absolute but relative. So the question we are addressing in this program is, "are morals absolute or relative?" Join us for the answer.


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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Answering the Religious Pluralism Question

The other day I had a coworker tell me that Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad, and all the gurus all taught pretty much the same things and that none of them claimed they were the only way. When I asked her for her source for this information, another co worker, who I have regularity of conversing with on truth matters, jumped into the conversation, and said, "I am always scared when he asks me "How do you know that?" Why is that?
Lately I am having more and more confirmation that people, who are bold enough to pontificate their views on religion and politics, really have not thought things of this subject matter. Their thinking is along the lines of, if something sounds good then go with it. This is no so much in the church, but this pertains to those in the milieux of what I call the "secular city."

Friday, June 16, 2017

Can You Test the Existence of God Like You Can Test Air?


The other day I received an email in our ministry inbox from an anti-theist. The reason I say anti-theist is because the person would be considered a lightweight in contrast to folks like Michael Ruse, John Gray, Alex Rosenberg, Kai Neilsen, or Brian Lieter.  

The purpose for emailing me was to take me on about something that I said in the Truth Matters program I was on back in March of this year. As it has been the case ever since I stopped allowing comments on my YouTube video, I get these humorous accusations from anti-theists telling me that I am dishonest and afraid of the dialogue. 

The real reason is that I don't like having to follow the venomous vitriolic rabbit trail seeking someone who wants to have a civil exchange. This is the reason why I have an email at the end of the videos, so as to give an opportunity for the viewer to contact us. By the way, I always welcome comments (so long as they abide by our comment policy) at the bottom or sending an email. I promise to keep it cordial.

The Real Issue Podcast: Is Truth Absolute or Relative?

When truth is not anchored on a standard outside ourselves it becomes relative and on shifting sand. Join us as Rob addresses the problems with relativism and how to answer some of the objections.

Join us on this episode of the Real Issue Podcast as we review what truth is, and then embark on understanding this ideology smothering American culture.

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Friday, June 9, 2017

Guest Post: Surfing the Gods of War

by David Russell
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. (Eph 6;12)
This saying I use as satire but I want us all to actually imagine what we are up against.  As believers we fight a war on many fronts.  It seems that the battle within is not enough, we have to contend against outside forces that rival our faith.  This seems to happen in every area of our lives.  It’s like the end of the "300" when Leonidas is waiting for the hail storm of arrows to descend on him.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: Responses to the BIG 4 Objections to the Christian Faith

From conversations we have with non-Christians, any objections that are brought up usually hinge on what we call the Big 4.  

Objection #1: Is truth absolute or relative?
Objection #2: Does God exist?
Objection #3: Has the Bible in general and the New Testament in particular been corrupted?
Objection #4: Was Jesus really resurrected from the dead? 

In this episode we address these objections and give a brief response to them. This also is the first podcast where we provide you with a resource reference for you to have for future study, and sharing with others. You can find that here.



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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Responding to the American Secular City's 'Altar' to the Forgotten God


"So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, Men of Athens. I observe you are very religious in all respects. For while I was passing through and examining the object of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, 'TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.' Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you."
~ Acts 17:22-23

I have been spending some of my devotional time in Acts 17 and interacting with Paul's encounter with the Greek philosophers on Mars Hill. Many of you know that this chapter in Acts is Paul's Gospel polemic to the Greek intellect of his day, the Stoics and the Epicureans.

Monday, June 5, 2017

If God Made the Universe Then Who Made God?

Have you ever been involved in a conversation with a skeptical co-worker or a friend who has asked you this question: "If God made the universe then who made God?" Let's get to the real issue of this objection for God's existence by looking a three of understandings for answering it.

First, this objection makes a categorical mistake. It would be like asking, "How does your favorite song smell?" It just does not make sense, does it? This objection is often asked by those who are fans of the famed atheist, Bertrand Russell who once said, "It everything must have a cause then God must have a cause."  But everything does not need to have a cause.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: What Kind of Faith Do You Have?

What kind of faith do you have? How would you answer the question, what is Faith?  Is faith delusional?  

Do you have an accidental faith that is based on just the fact of what you believe?  Or is your faith the kind of faith that can produce evidences for why you trust in Christ and why you believe that the Christian faith is true?  Join us on this episode of The Real Issue podcast to explore the definition of faith and why faith is not a blind form of faith.


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Sunday, May 28, 2017

Quick Answers to the BIG 4 Objections to the Christian Faith

Having been involved in the realm of apologetics for quite a few years now. there are several objections or questions that come to the forefront over and over again. These objections impact in one way or another what I call the BIG FOUR: 1) the matter of whether or not truth is absolute or relative; 2) God's existence; 3) Biblical authority; and 4) the credibility and historicity of Jesus' resurrection.  In this post I would like to just provide for you some quick responses so that you can keep them at your fingertips or in a folder and refer back to them when you need them.  Also I pray that what is provided here, will put you in a mode to research and reinforce these quick answers. 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: What is Apologetics (Part 2)



If someone were to ask you what apologetics is good for and why it is necessary for the church today, would you be able to answer them?  Apologetics is not just for refuting bad truth claims  That is only part of the equation.  It is also for equipping believers to go out and give our culture Heaven, and to protect the Church from error. On The Real Issue Podcast, this week we address these issues and answer a couple of objections at the end. Join us on this episode of The Real Issue podcast.



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Sunday, May 21, 2017

What is the New Apostolic Reformation? A Short Summary


The New Apostolic Reformation (hereafter NAR), is a loose collection of non-denominational and independent churches rallying around a particular set of biblical interpretations. The New Apostolic Reformation approaches church leadership and biblical interpretation quite differently from mainstream Protestant and Evangelical denominations. There is are distinct roles and power for its spiritual leaders that is focused upon spiritual warfare and cultural and political infiltration.  Unfortunately this has led to some unscriptural applications to faith and spirituality. 
The growth in the NAR is driven primarily through small groups and NAR church plants that are often birthed by a parent congregation. The movement has no central control like a pope or bishop, and many of those in the movement do not self identify as of it or even recognize the name of New Apostolic Reformation. Despite this there are thousands of churches and millions of believers embracing the teaching of the NAR.  Some of the popular teachers of the NAR include C. Peter Wagner, Rick Joyner, Bill Johnson and Kim Clement.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: What is Apologetics? (Part 1)

If someone were to ask you about the meaning of apologetics and is it necessary today, would you be able to answer them?   On The Real Issue Podcast, this week we address this question, but also give you some good reasons why apologetics is a necessary discipline today.  Join us on this episode of The Real Issue podcast.



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Friday, May 12, 2017

Contemplative Prayer, is it Biblical?

One of my favorite disciplines under the umbrella of theology is the what is called contemporary theology.  Marrying this to the style of apologetics, to the beginnings of my journeying into apologetics, I was involved in what would be called today, counter cult apologetics. If you think of it, contemporary theology and cult movements in our culture really make for an interesting blog post. This is where I want to begin a series on what is called the New Apostolic Reformation.  Before I do that, I want address what I consider to be the "initial camel in the tent" which led to this new wave in modern Christendom.[1] That "camel" is what is known as contemplative prayer.

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: What is the Bible? What Did Jesus Believe About the Bible?


Have you ever been challenged by someone asking "What is the Bible? On The Real Issue Podcast, this week we address this question, but also give you some ammunition by sharing what Jesus believed about the Bible.  Join us on this episode of The Real Issue podcast.




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Thursday, May 4, 2017

Misusing Isaiah 55:11 in Support of Evangelism to the "Happy Pagan"

You don’t believe the Word of God if you don’t start your evangelism with the Bible! God’s Word will not return void! Just give 'em the gospel and if they don't want to listen, oh well!” This was told to me by a well-meaning Christian college student after one of our club meetings this year. 

First off, as one who believes in the inerrancy of Scripture, the sufficiency of Scripture, the 
perspicuity of Scripture[1], and its preservation and protection by God, I find this objection rather misguided. Misguided because the verse we will address is taken out of context. Secondly as one who has attended and engaged a few atheist rallies up in D.C., and having dialogued with a handful of skeptics here in the ‘Burg, I find this objection from well meaning believers very disheartening.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: How Do We Know God Exists?


Have you ever been challenged by a skeptical atheist to discuss your convictions about God's existence and find that they will not listen to your or my Bible?  Welcome to the Real Issue podcast where we touch on this issue.  Listen in and learn some ways for you to communicate your understanding on God's existence with the goal of presenting the gospel.



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Monday, May 1, 2017

A Short Q and A About the Matter of Apologetics Today


Last week we finished our semester meetings with Ratio Christi at Germanna. As many of you know, Ratio Christi is a campus apologetics alliance equipping students to give reasonable answers to their Christian faith. But as Christian clubs go, there is always someone who has questions about apologetics or has an opinion about what the nature and understanding of apologetics.  

What is apologetics and is there only one way of understanding of apologetics? This posting is going to take a question and answer approach to this subject and answer some questions that pertain to the essence of apologetics and the "Why" questions for its necessity.

Monday, April 24, 2017

The Real Issue Podcast: Launching Out Our First Episode!

Well it has been a few years since we have doing any podcasting. Thanks to the encouragement of some of my colleagues and friend J. Warner Wallace who encouraged me to start podcasting, I have just completed a first episode.  It is a little rough around the edges but hey, you have to start somewhere. Right.

You can check it out here:


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If you have a topic that you would like us to discuss, leave us a comment and we'll seek to have an episode addressing your question in a future episode.  As of this posting we are waiting for I Tunes to validate this podcast so keep an eye on the right hand margin of this page, subscribe and I hope it serves you and that you enjoy it.

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Complacency in the Church is Why We Need Apologetics

… you say to yourself, “OK, why did it happen? Why did we make those bad engineering decisions we made in 1967 and 1986 with Challenger?” I'll tell you. It's the human element. And I suggest that there's a complacency there that comes from success. —Alan Shepard, Yankee, October 1991

This is a hard post for me to write. With all the posts by myself and my colleagues out there on why we need apologetics, there seems to be missing element in our crying out. Over the years, I have heard of the casualty[1] accounts about Christian young people leaving the faith. Even as far back as our time in Upstate NY we started hearing about the fall out.

Sure there, we can give you the statistics on the 60-80% walking away after leaving home. But there is another missing ingredient in all of this. That ingredient is complacency of the church under the shadow of secularism in America. Complacency is a dangerous disease when it comes to the fall out happening.

While NASA has made some great strides in space explorations, the church in America has grown in number over the last few decades.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

The Biblical (Small "o" orthodox) Understanding of Justification

The teaching of justification by faith is a "cardinal" teaching that definitively and historically separates biblical Christianity from all the other belief systems. In those branches of what is called "Christianity" there are many trying to work their way to God. This is true in the case of the Orthodox groups. 

The understanding of the doctrine of justification is very important in light of the recent events this past Sunday (April 9th) with Hank Hanegraaff announcing that he, his wife and two sons have been inducted into the Eastern Orthodox (Orthodox hereafter) Church, departing from the historical Evangelical faith. Of course this sent Facebook and other social mediums buzzing on both sides of the discussion; one claiming victory in that they have "the Bible Answer Man" in their camp, while others are scratching their heads with a lot of questions on why the "Bible Answer Man" has defected from the "faith once for all delivered to the saints" (Jude 3).

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Dear Pastor and Ministry Leader, What is Your Church Doing to Equip Your People?

This is a unique post, but I am feeling a little concerned right now thinking some very poignant   thoughts about the condition of the church in our current cultural condition.  We live in a culture that is laced with all these ideologies, and we see Christians compromising on matters of truth, sexuality, and morals in general.  

I am not angry, just very concerned why church pastors do not see the need to train their church members to defend their faith.  Why do they not understand that the average person sitting in the pew may not accept what they are preaching because they are not hearing why they should see it relevant for their lives.  Why do they not see that 60-80% of their young people from ages 18-30, leaving the faith and becoming skeptics.   

I am thankful to be in a church, whose pastors see this need. But we are looking to not be a part our churches ministry.  I also looking to "get off the porch" and be a part of holding events here in the Fredericksburg area, whether it is at a church, a neutral setting or the local college and university campuses. So with this little rant, let me ask you, the pastor and ministry leader some very straight forward questions.

If you are a pastor or a ministry leader, may I ask you a few questions? 
  1. In the past year, what have you stopped doing to communicate and defend the faith? Have you ever started anything since you have been at your position?
  2. What, if anything, have you started doing to equip your church? If nothing, why?
  3. How could a trained apologist assist you in reaching the lost and equipping your church? 
  4. Over the long-haul, what questions or issues do you see undermining your members' ability to stick it out with Christ?  How can our team of trained apologists help?
  5. What are the greatest obstacles preventing the average church and Christian school (K-12 and undergrad) from being more involved in teaching apologetics? 
  6. What steps can be taken to overcome these obstacles?

Please feel free to leave your comments below.  I would love to dialogue with you and share more with you about the "problem" in our culture and a solution to come alongside you and assist you in  strengthening your church to stand in this post Christian culture.  You can also find more information on the "project" here on this page.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Can You and I Know Truth Exists?

Where does truth come from and is it knowable? That question seems to be harder and harder to grasp for many people today, who rely on just the senses for determining their reality of truth. But the senses of sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch come far short of knowing real truth, only to leave one swimming in the pool of relativism.

But as Solomon has said, "nothing is new under the sun." For this question, along with the question of God's existence has been with us for centuries and even millennia. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Rob on the Bellator Christi Podcast: Apologetics and the Church

This past Friday, I had the privilege to be interviewed on the Bellator Christi podcast hosted by my good friend Brian Chilton.  Brian and I met face to face at the last National Apologetics Conference, last October and had a great time of fellowship.  Brian had me on his program, because we share a common burden about how the task of apologetics needs to be revived in the American church.

For those of you who have some of the common issues about trying to get apologetics a hearing in your church, or if you would like to know what apologetics is all about, and how it can impact your evangelism, please tune into the Bellator Christi podcast, and listen to our conversation with Brian Chilton (host).

On this program we discussed a few subjects as it related to apologetics and the church. Here is an outline of our discussion for those who want to zero in on a particular subject:



Outline:
  1. Introduction. (0.00)
  2. Tell us about how you came to faith in Christ. (7:15)
  3. When we speak about apologetics, what are we referencing (for first-time listeners)? (18:00)
  4. Why is apologetics necessary for modern Christianity? (22:25)
  5. What are some of the greatest intellectual challenges facing our youth today? (29:07)
  6. What apologetics arguments do you find most useful in answering these challenges? (38:17)
  7. Is apologetics useful for evangelism? If so, why? (43:20)
  8. How can the church become better involved in the apologetics enterprise? (45:44)
  9. Tell us about Ratio Christi and your work with them. (47:30)…broken connection…picks back up at (48:13)

To listen to our discussion: (BCP) Apologetics and the Church (with Rob Lundberg)

Friday, January 6, 2017

Why Don't Christians Like Apologetics? Three Responses to Three Popular Objections to Apologetics

Every so often I find myself frustrated, wondering how long it will take Christians to get the idea that our culture is changing right before our eyes and that we need to update how we share with our ever increasing skeptical culture the gospel of Christ.  Please understand I am not advocating changing the unchanging message.  Some of you who follow me on Facebook may have seen this from some of our postings on the need for apologetics in evangelism and why it is necessary for the church to incorporate it into the ministry of the church today. 

This posting is not going to discuss the "how," but what I want to do is get to the real issue and respond to the criticisms toward apologetics and provide a response to what I think are the top three criticisms today.

Before I do, let me explain that apologetics is not just for those in the scholarly circles but for the church at large.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Three Quick Approaches to Responding to the Problem of Evil

Suppose someone told you that they were a skeptic or they had a loved one who was a skeptic, and that the biggest "bug" for them about the existence of God is the problem of evil. This conversation actually happened to me one night as I was closing up the dealership. I had a daughter with her Mom, who were believers, asking this question as part of an off the subject of buying a car.

As someone who teaches on the subject of apologetics and worldview, this problem cannot be answered by any worldview outside the Christian worldview.  The pantheistic religions say that evil does not exist or that it is maya (non existent). The atheistic worldview finds it a problem that we all have to reconcile in ourselves, or blame someone, and for those who are its victims, one just needs to tough it out.

Only the Christian worldview has three approaches to answering to the problem of evil, and this what I would like to address in this posting.  I have written on this subject in the past, so some of this might sound a little familiar.  While we have storms (natural evil) and sickness, illness and disease, this posting will address the third kind of evil.  This is the problem of moral evil.

What are those approaches?