Eric Metaxas, New York Times #1 best-selling author, renowned commentator, and nationally syndicated radio show host, spoke on the topic of “Christian Thinking in a Secular Society” at Erskine’s Garnet & Gold Forum May 14.
“Truth is truth,” Metaxas declared, and in that sense there is no such thing as ‘Christian truth.’ He said Christian thinking must begin with believing in God as creator. “We need to believe that with every atom of our being,” he said. He told his audience that faith should touch every sphere of life and sketched out some ways in which science points to God. Science is not at odds with faith. “It was Christian ideas that gave us modern science,” he said. “We need to know that science is pointing more and more to God.”
Focusing on the evidence of “the fine-tuned universe,” Metaxas said that in our solar system, for example, if a planet’s distance from the sun or the size of its moon were slightly different, “it wouldn’t work.” He also noted that scientists have been trying to bring life from non-life for years but have had no success. “If I had to guess,” Metaxas joked, “looks like God done it.”
He also spoke about his conversion to faith in Christ, which was preceded by his immersion in the secular milieu of his college experience. His parents were immigrants who taught him to love America and to understand the value of freedom. When he went to Yale, he was unprepared for the “secular Marxism” and anti-American sentiment he encountered there. Most significantly, the prevailing worldview at the Ivy League school was that there is no truth. Big questions were avoided in that environment because the answers were just too depressing.
Once Metaxas finished his degree, he failed to find a good job. Moving back in with his parents, he endured a time of misery. Quoting C.S. Lewis, Metaxas said, “Pain is God’s megaphone.” When he was 25, he said, Jesus appeared to him in a dream. Metaxas believes he needed such a miracle because he was so “gummed up intellectually” in the wake of his college experience. After the dream, he began to read extensively and started to realize that the secular view ignores many large questions.
Christians need to challenge secular thought and must not be scared into silence, Metaxas told his audience. “All of reality points to God. There’s no way around it. God’s truth is either everything or nothing,” he said. “We need to be bold and strong, for the Lord our God is with us.”
Metaxas, who was introduced by Erskine President Dr. Steven Adamson, commented on what he has heard about Erskine and the new president’s vision for the institution, saying,
“When I see something wonderful, I get happy.” He urged Garnet & Gold Forum attendees to give to Erskine.
The author of Is Atheism Dead? (2021), Miracles (2014), and numerous other works— including children’s books, biographies of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Martin Luther, and William Wilberforce, as well as his own memoir, Fish Out of Water—Metaxas hosts the Eric Metaxas Radio Show and is founder and host of Socrates in the City: Conversations on the Examined Life, a series of discussions on “life, God, and other small topics.”
His op-ed, “Science Increasingly Makes the Case for God,” published in the Wall Street Journal in 2014, has garnered more than 600,000 Facebook shares and more than 9,250 comments, making it, unofficially, the most popular article in Wall Street Journal history.