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Come Reason's Apologetics Notes blog will highlight various news stories or current events and seek to explore them from a thoughtful Christian perspective. Less formal and shorter than the Web site articles, we hope to give readers points to reflect on concerning topics of the day.

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Showing posts with label year in review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label year in review. Show all posts

Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Top Five Apologetics Videos

The Come Reason YouTube Channel continues to grow in viewership and content. Recent news items, such as the Supreme Court's Obergefell decision are part of the reason why our number one video in 2015 focuses on Same-sex unions. Others, such as the Scientology series, were a surprise. Below you can watch any or all of the top five videos of 2015.

  1. Why Did the Culture Shift on Same-Sex Marriage?

  2. Two Questions on Same Sex Marriage

  3. The Evil of Scientology (Part 2)

  4. The Evil of Scientology (Part 1)

  5. Witnessing Tips: Identifying Logical Fallacies

Friday, December 26, 2014

2014 Top Five Apologetics Podcasts

The Come Let Us Reason Together podcast has continued to grow in 2014, seeing an average of nearly 1,700 downloads a month as we approach the end of the year. Part of Some of the increasing popularity has come from people interested in listening to previous podcasts, a task that was made much easier since we have redesigned the podcast page and integrated it into the site.

Of the popular topics for 2014, two of them ("Tools for the God-Fearing Mind" and "Science, God, and Knowing") deal with some complicated issues. Yet, these made it into our top five. Some others deal with questions that you hear from skeptics and the top podcast topic is one we've approached before: how to understand and witness to Muslims.

Here, in reverse order of popularity, are the top five podcast topics of 2014.
  1. Would the World be Better Without Religion?
    Skeptics such as Richard Dawkins often claim that the biggest evils in the world are perpetrated because of religious beliefs. Does religion cause more wars, more hatred and prejudice than other views? What would a world free of religion look like? Join Lenny as he shows why such objections have no grounding in reality.
  2. What's the Conflict between Faith and Reason?
    We constantly hear that faith and reason are opposites; if you have faith in something, you’ve left reason behind. Do Christians follow a "blind" faith? Is reason the enemy of faith? Listen in as Lenny shows why Christianity is an inherently reasonable faith.
  3. Tools for the God-fearing Mind
    Jesus commanded us that we are to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, but many Christians simply don't know how to love God with their minds. Before we can think rightly about God, we need to learn to think rightly, to think logically. In this talk, Lenny teaches you how you can tell the difference between good arguments and bad ones and how you can offer unbelievers rational, persuasive arguments for your faith.
  4. Science, God, and Knowing
    Today, people look to scientists to find the answers to our problems in the world. But does science have limits? Are there other ways to know something as fact? And how are questions about God and religion tested scientifically? In this class, Lenny shows why scientific objections to God fail.
  5. The Challenge of Islam
    Islam is one of the fastest growing religions in the world, but is still a mystery to most Christians. Is it a religion of peace and a breeding ground for terrorists? Join us as we examine Muslim beliefs and discuss how to effectively witness to Muslims.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 Top Ten Apologetics Tweets

One of the ways I leverage social media is to expose people to the wider views and issues that are being written about online.  So, I use my Twitter and Facebook accounts to post interesting links or to start conversations about things that matter. (Not exclusively, mind you. If you follow me you may also get some personal updates or a proud photo of a family member.)

Below are the top ten read articles I linked to with an apologetic or cultural focus. It's interesting to see just what resonates with folks out there as well as what was hot in the news this year. Some of both are reflected below.
  1. Why do they always ask about rape and incest?
  2. Roger Ebert Reviews a Tragedy: His Search for God
  3. Supreme Court Decisions Cannot Define Morality
  4. The knockout game: reporting more hype than truth.
  5. Triumph of the vulgarians
  6. A Tale of Two Hitchens
  7. The Culture of Memes and Why It’s Ruining the World
  8. Family Says They Did Tip Gay Server, Didn't Leave Note
  9. A Whole New Meaning to Sex-Crazed
  10. Devastating Arguments Against Christianity (Courtesy of the Internet)

Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 Top Five Apologetics Podcasts

The Come Reason podcasts have been a weekly staple of our ministry for years. They cover a wide range of topics and issues that help Christians to better defend their faith. This year our top five topics really focused in on God's existence and His revelation to us. My debate against noted Internet atheist Richard Carrier was one of the top downloaded talks, along with the question of the origin of life, and how to answer atheists when they offer objections to God's existence. Tackling the Issue of Homosexuality landed right in the middle of the top five, showing that this topic is becoming more troublesome for those in the church.

Here, in reverse order of popularity, are the top five podcast topics of 2013.
  1. Esposito vs. Carrier: Does God Exist? (Debate)
    Does God Exist? Philosophers and theologians have written volumes on this topic, but it has become especially significant in our modern world. Can we prove that God exists? And what are the implications if God doesn't exist? Listen to this lively exchange between Lenny Esposito and atheist Richard Carrier recorded before a packed house at the University of California Riverside.
  2. The Origin of Life Requires a Creator
    How did life arise on earth? What are the key elements we need to focus on when talking with an evolutionist? What questions remain unanswered? In this class, we will look specifically at the beginning of life and show why given the evidence belief in a creator makes the most sense.
  3. Tackling the Issue of Homosexuality
    Homosexual activists continue to press a pro-gay agenda in politics and in our schools. Even many church-goers believe that same-sex marriage should be allowed. Are Christians bigoted? How can we discuss these issues in a loving and convincing way? Join us to find out.
  4. Answering Atheist Arguments Against God
    Atheism has been taking center stage lately. Both the New Atheists and a cohort of Internet skeptics continue to raise objections that have caught the public's fancy. Are they right? How should we answer? In this podcast, Lenny will point out the poverty of atheist arguments.
  5. How to Know the Bible is Really from God
    When asked why they hold to certain beliefs or why they feel acting in a certain manner is a wrong, Christians will usually point to the Bible. The Bible is the standard of our faith. Why should we put so much faith in a collection of ancient texts? What about the holy texts of other faiths? Join us to see why the Bible is completely trustworthy.

Friday, December 27, 2013

2013 Top Ten Apologetics Blog Posts

We're once again highlighting the top ten blog posts for the year. The blog continues to grow in popularity with over 10,000 readers per month visiting the blog alone.  Add that to our web site and we see over 370,000 hits from nearly every country on earth.

Below are the top ten unique articles or content for 2013. There are a couple of podcasts that were also featured on the blog and would have made it to this list, but I will cover those in a separate post. Questions on the reliability of the Bible, the problem of moral grounding, and even a word of encouragement from J.P. Moreland all resonated with readers. The top post tackles an objection we hear all too often: religion is the cause of so many wars throughout history.

All ten posts are linked below. Which was your favorite?
  1. Does Religion Cause War?
  2. How Can God be Without Beginning or End?
  3. Bible Contradictions - Why Responding "Show Me Some" Doesn't Work
  4. Debunking 'Bible Secrets' Television Shows
  5. Worldview Definitions: The Problem with Postmodernism
  6. J.P. Moreland to Young Christians: "Don't let anybody bully you"
  7. Do You Need Religion to Have Morals?
  8. The Big Bang is Not the Enemy of Theology
  9. How Teaching Answers Fails Christian Students
  10. Why are Christians so obsessed with homosexuality?

Thursday, December 26, 2013

2013 Was a Great Year for Apologetics

Christmas is always a joyous time, a time to be reminded of how blessed we are. And now that we're preparing for a new year, I'd like to take a moment and reflect on all God has accomplished through this ministry along with your prayers and support.

Outreaches and Debates

Students at the ForumOne way Come Reason seeks to share the Gospel is through different outreaches and debate opportunities, particularly at college campuses. 2013 was a great year for outreach as we were able to interact with students at four different college or university campuses this year. I was invited to participate in open forums at both UC Irvine and Riverside Community College. Open forums are where a panel of Christians take questions on morality, biblical Christianity, and other issues from the students. The latter event was covered in the college newspaper with a great write up.

Dr. Michael Ruse and Dr. Fazale RanaIn May, Come Reason co-sponsored with Harvest's The Well Club the second Great God Debate held at UC Riverside. This year's debate focused on the question of life's origin and pitted Dr. Fazale Rana against Dr. Michael Ruse. Over 1,000 students attended the event, which was webcast to countries around the world, thanks to Biola University's apologetics department.

Apologetics Missions Trips are another type of outreach we provide. These trips are where we take a group of high school and college kids to locations that are culturally non-Christian. This year, we visited Dearborn, Michigan for the first time, which boasts the highest Muslim population in the U.S. and has the largest mosque in North America.

Dearborn Apologetics Missions TripThe 22 students I took on that trip got to interact with imams, Muslim apologists, speak with ex-Muslims as well as go out on the streets at shopping centers and the University of Michigan Dearborn to witness one on one with the Muslim population.


Our Dare to Defend apologetics conferences have been a staple of Come Reason since the ministry's beginning. This year we held two such events, with the first at The Well Church in Oak Valley. Pastor Ron Wood and his congregation graciously hosted a three-day event covering the existence of God, the facts of the resurrection, and other topics. We look forward to holding a similar event in 2014.

A Reason for Hope Military OutreachThe highlight of our year was certainly the outreach at the U.S. Army Garrison in Vicenza, Italy. Entitled “A Reason for Hope,” I was able to give four talks to the troops and their families stationed at Caserma Ederle. I was able to talk about things like the problem of evil to those who had just a few weeks prior returned from the war zone in Afghanistan. Army Chaplain LTC Scott Hammond hosted the event and we are especially thankful to Jeff and Kim Neill for their organization and hospitality in letting us stay at their home.

Speaking and Teaching

Speaking and teaching opportunities continue to play an integral role in the ministry. I continued teaching the monthly apologetics classes at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, CA. I was also blessed to help teach Pastor Daniel Eichelberger's Deepening Your Faith classes, which are more in-depth theology studies. We covered topics on logic and argumentation, revelation and authority, the person of Jesus, and historic Christian heresies. Other events included services at Calvary Chapel San Diego and Calimesa, and radio interviews on stations in Michigan and New Jersey. If you would like me to visit your church, I would love to come out! Just let me know.

Internet Outreach

Our online ministries continue to grow. Over the past year, we've had over 300,000 visitors to the Come Reason web site from nearly every nation around the world. I've been writing nearly daily in the Apologetics Notes blog, which now averages over 10,000 views monthly. The podcast saw 485,000 hits this year and over 30,000 downloads of the weekly teaching. Our YouTube channel also continues to expand as we add more teachings there, and Facebook and Twitter conversations have been bristling. If you aren't following the ministry through one of these channels, I encourage you to start!


One new project that I'm excited about is the upcoming release of True Reason: Confronting the Irrationality of the New Atheism by Kregel. I was blessed to have contributed a chapter on the argument from reason, made famous by C.S. Lewis. The book is due to be released on February 1.

Lastly, after several delays, I was happy to see my debate against Richard Carrier released on video. This was the first Great God Debate, and as you can see it was a packed house with great interaction by the audience. If you'd like a DVD of the deabate, comlete with the Q&A and bonus features, you can get one with your contribution to the ministry.

I can tell you that God opened more doors this year than ever before. It has made me deeply humbled to see how He continues to work and excited to see what He has in store for 2014. It promises to be filled with even more ministry opportunities. I also wanted to say thank you to all those who have prayed for this ministry or contributed to its support. Without you, it would be impossible to accomplish so much. He has truly blessed me and I pray that in 2014 He will bless you as well.

Lenny Esposito

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Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Top Ten #Apologetics Social Media Links

Beyond Come Reason's articles and features, our social media sites also try to keep you up to date on important or relevant articles and events relating to faith, culture, and the Christian worldview. Below are the top ten stories that were clicked on from our Twitter and Facebook pages.
  1. Setting the Record Straight - YouTube Video Playlist  (Originally tweeted on Sep 28)
  2. What's Wrong With "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus"? (Originally tweeted on Jan 13)
  3. Why I Secretly Root For the Atheists in Debates…  (Originally tweeted on Aug 23)
  4. Billy Graham, Mormonism, and the word "Cult" (Originally tweeted on Oct 23)
  5. Group sex is the latest 'trend' for teenage girls, disturbing report reveals  (Originally tweeted on Dec 29)
  6. Why do they always ask about rape and incest? (Originally tweeted on Oct 24)
  7. Planned Parent Info for Teens: It’s great to be a slut  (Originally tweeted on Nov 12)
  8. Come Reason's Free mp3s (Originally tweeted on June 5)
  9. Answering Bill Nye's Video on Creationism   (Originally tweeted on Sept 7)
  10. Should a Christian Vote for the Lesser of Two Evils?  (Originally tweeted on Nov 5)

Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 Top Five Apologetics Podcast Topics

The Come Let Us Reason Together podcast has been one of the most popular features of our ministry. With nearly 125,000 downloads last year we saw our podcast audience grow by about 40%.  This weekly series continues to provide thoughtful instruction on important apologetics issues.  We've been blessed to again be counted among the top 16 apologetics podcasts by the well-respected Apologetics 315 web site.

Below are the top five topics downloaded in our 2012 releases. If you haven't yet subscribed to the podcast, you may do so via iTunes or by RSS.
  1. The Case for the Resurrection
  2. Talking About God at Starbucks
  3. Does God's Predestination Contradict My Freedom to Choose?
  4. Separating Science from Scientism
  5. Talking about the "God" Particle—Interview with Dr. Barry Ritchie

Friday, December 28, 2012

2012 Top Ten Apologetics Blog Posts

2012 is coming to a close, and as I did last year, I'd like to take a moment and look back on some of the more popular posts from the last twelve months. Come Reason has continued to reach farther than I would've imagined, with over 300,000 unique visitors from all over the globe reading our articles, posts, and interactions  Add to that the highly popular podcasts and the various peaking engagements, and we've been very blessed this year.

Below are the top ten blog posts for 2012. My series on the "Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists" really resonated, making six of the ten spots on the list.  But the most popular post by far was my response to Jefferson Bethke's viral video "Why I Hate Religion but  Love Jesus". It seems that everyone had an opinion on this, I only hope that my thoughts add to a better understanding of approaching Christianity as a thoughtful faith.

The other top posts dealt with the Billy Graham organization's purging the word "cult" from their web site during Mitt Romney's campaign as well as an internal contradiction within the Book of Mormon itself. All ten posts are linked below. Which was your favorite?
  1. What's Wrong With "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus"?
  2. The Book of Mormon's Slip is Showing
  3. Billy Graham, Mormonism, and the word "Cult"
  4. Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists - #10 Theory of Knowledge
  5. Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists - #5 The Edge of Evolution
  6. Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists - #4 In Defense of Miracles
  7. Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists - #6 The Christians as the Romans Saw Them
  8. Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists - #7 Questions That Matter
  9. Top Ten Neglected Books for Apologists - #9… A Romance Story?
  10. Should the Gospel accounts be taken as history or as propaganda?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

2011 Top Five Apologetics Podcast Topics

The Come Let Us Reason Together podcast has been one of the most popular features of our ministry. With 90,000 downloads last year alone, our weekly podcast continues to provide thoughtful instruction on important apologetics issues.  We've been blessed to again be counted among the top 16 apologetics podcasts by the well-respected Apologetics 316 web site.

Below are the top five topics downloaded in our 2011 releases. If you haven't yet subscribed to the podcast, you can do so via iTunes or by RSS.
  1. Did Christianity Steal from Mystery Religions?
  2. Dealing with Bible Contradictions
  3. The Case Against Homosexual Marriage
  4. Who Chose What to Include in the Bible?
  5. Looking at Eastern Religions: Hinduism & Buddhism

Thursday, January 05, 2012

2011 Top Ten Apologetics Posts

As we begin 2012, I just wanted to say thank you to all who engage with us here at Come Reason through the blog, the podcast, our Facebook page or any of the online avenues we offer. You made 2011 a banner year! We saw over 245,000 visitors from over 200 countries seeking answers to questions on faith, reason, and the Christian worldview. In the next couple days I'll be highlighting some of the more popular content we've seen from all this traffic. First up, the top ten posts of last year from our Apologetics Notes blog:
  1. The Most Penetrating Critique of New Atheism - Written by an Atheist
  2. Scientists Clinging to Blind Faith for All to See
  3. A (Not Too) Serious Christian History Quiz
  4. Ten Faith-Defending Ministries Worthy of Your Support
  5. Should Christians Cheer the Death of bin Laden?
  6. How to Answer the Evolution Question
  7. Christians and Birth Control - A Thoughtful Analysis
  8. What a New Testament Church REALLY Looks Like
  9. Jim Caviezel's Amazing Reading of the Resurrection
  10. What's an Apologetics Missions Trip?
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