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Tidbits – March 2020

It’s so easy to get things wrong

While doing evangelism, Christian apologist Ray Comfort will often ask his conversational partner a series of quick trick questions. The goal is to provoke a little humility by highlighting how easy it is to get things wrong. So take this quiz (or better, yet, give it to a friend…who can take a joke) and then look at the bottom of this page to see how well you really did.

  1. How many of the unclean animal did Moses take onto the Ark?
  2. What is the name of that raised print that deaf people use?
  3. Spell the word shop. What do you do when you come to a green light?
  4. It’s noon. You look at the clock, and the big hand is on the three, and the little hand is on the five. What time is it?
  5. You are the driver of a train. There are 30 people on board. At the first stop, 10 people get off the train. At the next stop, 5 people get on the train. Here is the question: What is the name of the driver of the train?
  6. Spell the word silk. What do cows drink?

And here’s one Comfort doesn’t use, but should:

What mouse walks on two legs?
  I don’t know.
Mickey Mouse! What dog walks on two legs?
  Goofy?
Right! And what duck walks on two legs?
  Donald Duck!
All ducks walk on two legs!

Troublemaking

Bruce Jenner, who now goes by the name of Caitlyn, was an Olympic decathlete in the 1970s, and his personal best in the 400-meter is still better than any woman has ever run. If feelings can determine a person’s gender, then why doesn’t Caitlyn own the women’s 400-meter world record?

Lies and statistics, and spanking…

Every now and again the mainstream media will splash news of the very latest spanking study, which will report that spanking is “linked to aggression, antisocial behavior, mental health problems, cognitive difficulties, low self-esteem, and a host of other negative outcomes.” That study will then be used as evidence that spanking needs to be banned.

But if we look beyond the headline we’ll find that whatever the latest study might be, it makes two fundamental errors.

  1. First, it will label as “spanking” anything physical that a parent did as a punishment for their child. That a child who is regularly beaten by his drunken father will have problems at school, is presented as evidence that a child who sometimes gets three smacks to his behind will also have trouble at school.
  2. Second, despite knowing that correlation does not imply causation, the press will report as if this is the exception to the rule, instead of looking for any sort of possible alternate explanation for the findings.

What might an alternative explanation be? If I were a betting man I would put all my fortune down on this: were we to do a study of children who crayola the hallway wall, and then go outside to make mud pies so they can feed them to their napping, open-mouthed big sister, we would find that they are more likely than their peers to get spanked. In other words, it might well be that spankings don’t lead to these “negative outcomes” but rather that a child’s disposition to negative outcomes requires a parent to spank them more often.

As any parent with two or more children can tell you, one of their kids will require more discipline than the others. And it isn’t the especially good one.

Get ready to be reviled

“Pastors need to teach their people about how to handle with grace being looked down on more then ever before. I heard of John Stott reflecting that as a young man at Cambridge when people said ‘O he’s a Christian,’ what they meant was that he was a goody-two-shoes. But now to be called a Christian means that you are viewed as a morally-deficient person, because you have not swallowed the gay agenda.”

– Dr. John E Benton, Evangelicals Now, July 2012, on how the world will change as gay marriage becomes the norm.

More troublemaking

Our culture is insane, as is on clear display with what they think about sexual education. To put that insanity on better display here’s an idea from frequent RP contributor Rob Slane that lays out a couple of pointed questions a brave troublemaking Christian could ask university professors or sex-ed teachers.

“I imagine a teenager in a sex education lesson asking the following question: ‘Miss. Assuming I take precautions, would it would be safer for me to have 3 partners or 300?’ No brainer of course, and even the most progressive of teachers would have to admit that 3 is ‘safer’ than 300. Simple mathematical probabilities this one: the lower the number, the ‘safer the sex.’

“In which case a really mischievous teenager – a true rebel you might say – might ask the following question: ‘Miss, is it safer to only have 1 partner for life, or multiple? And if it’s 1 – which it is – and if this is a safe-sex lesson – which it is – why do you not advocate it?’”

Faint heart never won fair lady

“Many a man has known a great woman, yet did not win her because, out of fear, he failed to pursue her.  Every man understands this, both the brave man who has risked it all (and won or lost) and the timid man who did not dare.  The battle to take the great action required at these ‘make it or break it’ moments is won or lost privately, deep in the heart.”
– Patrick F. Fagan

Answers for “It’s so easy to get things wrong”

  1. Moses didn’t take any animals on the ark; Noah did.
  2. Deaf people don’t need special raised print; Braille is for the blind.
  3. You certainly don’t stop.
  4. We told you, it’s noon.
  5. Remember, you are the driver of the train.
  6. While calves might drink milk, cows drink water.

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