Answering The Objection, “All Religion Is Manmade”
by Frank Turek
How do you proceed when someone asserts that, “all religions are manmade”? Here are some helpful ways of responding to objections in general, and then this particular one.
Answer the Person, Not Just the Question. Ravi Zacharias says that when you address objections or answer questions about the Christian faith, never forget that you are answering a person, not just a question. A caring person and thoughtful apologist should probe to see why the person is making this objection or asking this question. This is especially true with a question such as, “If there is a good God, why does He allow evil in the world?” The answer will be different if the questioner is motivated by mere intellectual curiosity than if the person has just watched his daughter die. Launching into a philosophical critique when the person is really seeking pastoral care would be disastrous. Ask clarifying questions before answering the question.
This also is true with the claim that “all religion is manmade.” While it probably does not have the same likelihood of being as emotionally sensitive as the issue of evil, the potential is still there. Perhaps the objection was conceived after being hurt by hypocritical Christians or deceived by manmade cults. Therefore, asking a couple of questions before answering is usually a good idea.
Now, that’s not always possible in a public setting, but it certainly is in private conversations. So in a personal setting, you might start with, “That’s an excellent question. Why do you ask?” Or, “That’s an interesting claim. Why do you bring it up?” How they answer will determine how you respond…