Rob Bowman In Discussions with former Mormon Shawn McCraney

Dear Friends of CRandE and Rob Bowman:  Please be in prayer today for Rob and Shawn McCraney. Rob has shared the following update earlier today. The livestream of the program starts at 8pm MST tonight.

From Rob Bowman on his facebook page: ‘Tonight (2/25/14), I will be a guest on the TV program “Heart of the Matter,” hosted by Shawn McCraney. Shawn is a former Mormon who became a born-again Christian and now leads an informal church in Salt Lake City. Shawn recently did a couple of programs disparaging the doctrine of the Trinity, in response to which I flew out to Salt Lake City yesterday to meet with him. We talked for four hours yesterday and are planning a similar meeting tomorrow. Tonight I am expecting to answer some questions about the doctrine of the Trinity on his live streaming broadcast: The situation with Shawn is complicated and difficult for a number of reasons. I would appreciate the prayers of my Christian friends for the program tonight and also my personal conversations with Shawn.’

Apologetic Methodology – An Interview with Robert M. Bowman, Jr.

I have been a student of Christian apologetics for several decades. There has been a constant kerfuffle between the classical, evidential, and presuppositional schools of thought in that time. The barbs from one school to another range from “That’s hard to follow” to  “You’re doing it all wrong” to “You’re a heretic.” Typically the most acidic comments issue from the presuppositional school, which is the one I find most challenging to understand, since it is deeply philosophical in nature.
During that same time, I have read and interacted with apologist Rob Bowman. Rob is one of my heroes of the faith. The guy has demonstrated nothing short of enduring perseverance in dealing with obstinate unbelief of several religions, especially Jehovah’s Witness and Mormon, interacting persistently and patiently with adherents in group settings and at an individual level as well.
A few years ago, Rob co-authored a book with Ken Boa called Faith Has Its Reasons. This is a survey of various schools of thought concerning Christian apologetics. The most surprising feature of the book is an irenic tone where Boa and Bowman encourage each apologetic school to look at and learn from other schools. Rather than calling for all-out war between apologetics methods, they seek to bring a little peace between brothers.
The following video is an interview with Rob where he discusses the book at length. 

Critical Thinking Course with Rob Bowman: Sept 28th

Food for thought… Rob Bowman (co-author of Putting Jesus In His Place and Faith Has Its Reasons) will start teaching a live course online starting Tuesday evening, September 28th. Rob is a great author, apologist, and teacher. He has served the church at large for many, many years and displays unearthly patience with cultists of every stripe.

Details here.

Why I Labor

Those of you who know me are aware of the fact that I have an apologetics ministry primarily directed towards the Jehovah’s Witnesses. For many years I have researched, responded to, and evangelized them. I have burned many days of my life in this pursuit. Why? Why do I do it? Why do I burn so much time pursuing a people-group that is radically opposed to the gospel, that is indoctrinated endlessly to reject the biblical God-man who is their one and only hope for salvation, that is convinced wholesale that I am a pawn of Satan trying to deceive them?

Before I tell you why, let me rehearse for you a few reasons why I do not do this.

1. Fame – The JWs have been around a long time. In apologetics circles, it is certainly not one of the up-and-coming groups that has a lot of excitement surrounding it. They are ‘old news’ in the modern clamor of the 10-second sound-bite.

2. Money – This is not my job. It may be one of my passions, but I don’t make a dime from it. I have a regular job, a family to care for, and a church to serve. Plenty on my plate before I ever get time to work on this.

3. Hatred – I don’t hate the dear people I am trying to reach. They are deceived and are walking to their doom in denying Christ, just as I was before Jesus saved me.

4. Success – If defined in terms of converts, I am a miserable failure. JWs are not lining up on my doorstep ready to walk away from everything they know in order to embrace Christ.

So why do I do it? What has brought me through so many long years of labor?

1. Jesus – He calls me to the harvest field. No matter the size of the harvest, how can I refuse him? He has given me a desire to serve this way, given me a brain to use as he commands, and provided the resources that give me opportunity to pursue his purpose in this.

2. Truth – It must be spoken in the company of the lost. No matter the protestations made by the organization called The Watchtower that it alone possesses the truth – they have missed the true Jesus and he’s exactly the one that Jehovah’s Witnesses need to know.

3. An Evident Need – There are few Christians reaching out to Jehovah’s Witnesses. The reasons for the lack are numerous. Evangelizing this group raises some very specific challenges which everyone is not well-equipped to handle. By God’s mercy I have become equipped to meet these challenges.

4. Love – I find a fountain supplied by Christ in my life that spills over in concern and love for the dear people ensnared in the false religion of the Watchtower. I can’t quite explain it… but it is there nonetheless. I believe this is also part of the Lord’s equipping me for this work.

Those are some of the reasons why I labor as I do. Ultimately, I believe this is one very small part of God’s grand design in working out his purposes among men and women, boys and girls. Don’t get me wrong. It hasn’t been easy. There have been plenty of times when I have wanted to walk away from this ministry but the Lord leads me back to it, heart and mind. It’s not for everyone and I have tried to be careful in my teaching opportunities to make this clear to my students. Oh that I would be faithful in the harvest: plowing, sowing, and reaping as He enables me for the rest of my days.