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QTM Episode 93 - Lee Strobel and the Question of Whether God is Real

After writing many books on apologetics, Lee Strobel took a slightly different approach in his newest book to help people find the answer to this most important question, Is God Real?

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Welcome to Questions That Matter, a podcast of the C.S. Lewis Institute. I'm your host, Randy Newman. I have the great joy and privilege today of having a conversation with Lee Strobel, the author of many, many, many books that you've probably heard of all, of which that begin with the words, “The Case for…” The Case for Christ, The Case for Faith, The Case for a Creator. Lee Strobel, welcome to Questions That Matter.

Hey! Thanks, Randy. It's great to be with you. I was saying before we went on the air I remember we first met a number of years ago, when you were speaking at a conference. I was speaking at the same conference. And you gave a talk on evangelism that is still one of my all-time favorites, one of the best talks I’ve ever heard on the subject. So we text and say, “I appreciate you.”

Well, thank you. That is very kind, and that was a great experience. That was a great conference.

Yeah.

I just was so encouraged how many people showed up at an apologetics conference-

Oh! It was unbelievable. There were over, I think, 4,500 people or something like that there? It was incredible. In the middle of Maine. I mean, Bangor, Maine. Who would have thought? And it was all put together by this guy in a wheelchair who had a vision to do this event, and he worked for years to do it, and God blessed it in amazing ways!

Yeah. Well, you know, I got a chance to go back up to Maine this past summer. I spoke at a pastor's conference. So same area, Maine.

Yeah.

So very small. Forty people, maybe a dozen pastors, but I was just as encouraged, that these are…. Boy, you talk about front lines and difficult ministry situations. And I think almost all of the pastors were bivocational, so they had to work another job because their congregations were so tiny. But they were so…. just encouraged in the gospel and wanting to reach out. It was wonderful!

That's awesome. That encourages you, I'm sure, every bit as much as you encourage them.

Yeah! Oh, it was! Definitely. Well, I want to tell our listeners one piece about Lee Strobel they may not know, in that there is a Strobel Center for Apologetics at Colorado Christian University. You helped get it started. You’re still involved there. Give us—I'll put a link in the show notes, but give us a little commercial for that center.

Yeah. I got together forty PhDs in the area of evangelism and apologetics, and we put together ninety-one courses, on the undergraduate level and the graduate level, all online, all accredited, and so if someone wants to get a master’s degree in evangelism and/or apologetics, you can do that, fully online at your own pace. Designed for people who are working a busy job and so forth. I think each course is actually five weeks long, so it's very flexible to do. And then we have an undergraduate degree for people that want a bachelor’s degree in this. So we're pretty excited about it. We've graduated our first master’s degree students. You may remember J. Warner Wallace, the guy who wrote Cold Case Apologetics, a former atheist. His son, Jimmy, who was also a detective out in LA, got his master's degree through our program.

Nice! Boy, that is so good to hear, so good to hear! And there are all of these things going on that many, many people never hear about.

Yeah.

They should be famous, but for whatever reason they're not. But you think of the potential of training up people for those kinds of ministries. That's so very great.

Yeah. We really think every church, regardless of its size, needs to have a person in charge of evangelism and nothing else. If it's a small church, it's a volunteer. If it's a medium-sized church, it's part time. If it's a big church, a full-time person. But someone who is really focused on evangelism, not to do evangelism for the church, but to train 100% of the congregation how to naturally and effectively share their faith, how to organize attractional events to bring people from the community in, and so forth, and really develop an evangelism strategy for that community, who stays up late at night praying and strategizing how to reach each community for the Lord. And so we want to train those people as part of our mission at the Center at Colorado Christian.

Oh, I love that vision! So every church has an evangelism advocate or a promoter. Years ago, I had a conversation with a New Testament scholar, and he told me… he called me an evangelist, and I went, “Oh, no, no, no. I'm not an evangelist. I'm not like Bill Bright or Billy Graham or people that get up on street corners. I'm not that,” and he said, “No. That’s a kind of evangelist, but you look at Ephesians 4, the people there, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, who are called to equip the saints in evangelism.”

Right. Exactly.

And that was a shift for me, of, “Oh, I think that is what I do,” and in fact, I think the Lord has used me because I'm pretty… I struggle with this, I'm a fellow struggler, and that's where most people are. So the idea of an evangelist in each church to encourage that, not with this, “Hey, look at me! I'm so bold! You should be like me.” No. It’s more like, “Let me give you ideas about how ordinary non-evangelists do the work of an evangelist.”

Yes. That's right. I see three primary roles for that point leader. One is to train everybody in the church how they can share Jesus in a way that fits their personality and their approach. And so 100% of people are trained and encouraged to share their faith. Secondly, to coalesce the people who God has given a special anointing—I'll use the word—in evangelism. I mean, there are certain people—I'm sure you know them like I know them—who just lead people to the Lord left and right!

Right.

And so to build into them, because they're going to have a disproportionate impact. And then the third responsibility is to say, “How can we reach this community for Christ? What events might we do? How can we leverage Easter and Christmas to reach the community with the gospel?” And one of the most exciting things, Randy, that I've seen in recent years has been the development of small groups for nonbelievers. They’re led by a Christian couple. We call them spiritual discovery groups. And half a dozen or so nonbelievers with two Christians who lead the group, and they go through a journey together. And so we did this in Chicago as an experiment, and we had 1,100 nonbelievers in these groups over time. It was a big church. And we tracked them, and we found that 80% of them came to faith in Christ. 80%. So we think these are gangbusters, and that's another thing that that evangelism point leader can bring to a church.

But I’ll tell you a quick funny story: I don't know if you're familiar with Duck Dynasty, but Willie Robertson, who's kind of the head of that whole thing—he's the guy with the headband, the American flag headband. Anyway, he is passionate about reaching his community for Christ. So he heard me talking about this point leader thing. He goes to a small church in West Monroe, Louisiana. And he went to the pastor and said, “I want to be the volunteer point leader for evangelism in our church,” and the guy said, “Great! Go for it.” So Mark Mittelberg and I kind of mentored him in how to do this role. And they have had like revival breaking out in their church! I remember I got an email from him like March of this last year, about a year ago. And he said, “We’ve already baptized a hundred new believers in the church.” These were adults who are coming to faith in Christ. He said, “The place is on fire for evangelism, and everybody is so excited!” And then there was a pause, and about twenty minutes later, another text came through, and it said, “Just baptized three more!” He said, “This is awesome!”

So I really think this is a key, and Mark Mittelberg has written a book called Contagious Faith that talks about this and also a book called Contagious Church that talks about these things, and that might be helpful for people who want to kind of go further.

I'm jotting that down, and I'll put those links in the show notes.

Great! Yeah.

This is so encouraging! There are so many things in our world right now that are pretty discouraging.

Yeah.

And I need to keep reminding myself over and over and over again about Jesus' parable of the wheat and the weeds.

Yeah.

There's a lot of weeds going on, but there’s also some great wheat going on. and it's hard to see it sometimes. I think I heard someone once say that we're living in some of the weediest and wheatiest times. It’s hard to say, but-

Yeah.

So that's just very, very encouraging.

Well, you know, along those lines, like you, I get discouraged by what's going on in our world. And yet I was talking the other day—Do you know a guy named Shane Pruitt?

I'm sorry. I don’t think I do.

Okay. Shane’s a great guy. Shane is a—his ministry is to travel the country, and he's a Baptist. He speaks to groups of high school kids or college students about God and does evangelistic meetings around the country. Well, he said recently, he said, “Lee, in the last three years, I've seen more young people come to faith in Jesus Christ than in the previous eighteen years of ministry combined.”

Yeah. I believe it.

So there are some good things going on. We can't lose sight of that. And 44% of Americans say, “I'm more open now to God than I was before the pandemic.”

Yeah. With difficult times comes a more desperate search for… “There's got be something more!” So I think if we're willing to step into that with a heart of compassion, because I think the way people are coming to faith today, there's a lot to surrender. There's always has been, but I think, for a lot of people, it's a pretty painful process. I mean ultimately it is a joyful process, but I think…. So we need to enter in compassionately.

Absolutely! Yeah.

Well, Lee, we're never going to get around to talking about your book, which was the reason to do this whole thing. I found this book, Is God Real? at my library, at my public library.

Oh! Awesome!

“Boy, that Lee Strobel! He just churns them out!” But I noticed that the title of this doesn't have the word “case.” Yeah. It’s not, “The case for….” This is called, Is God Real? And so I immediately thought, “I think he's trying to do something a little bit different in this than The Case for Christ, The Case for Faith.”

Yeah.

I really loved it.

Well, thanks.

Am I right? Are you…. I mean, in some ways, it is very much like those others… The Case for Christ. But there is something different about this one, isn't there?

Yeah. There is. The reason I called it Is God Real? is because actually my publisher came to me and said, “Our tech people have discovered something amazing.” I said, “What?” He said, “Well, we discovered that two hundred times a second, around the clock, someone on the planet is typing into a computer search engine basically the question, “Is God real?” And I thought, “Oh, my goodness!” And I thought, “I need to write a book that has a more neutral title than The Case for Christ. Because you know…. And yes, people give that book out because it has my story in it and the evidence in it for the faith. But I thought, “That’s kind of an in-your-face title.” And so to title a book more neutrally, Is God Real? The subtitle is, “Exploring the Ultimate Question of Life.” Maybe more non-believers would be open to reading it. If they're given it as a—here's what's important. If they're given it as a gift by a Christian who they respect and have a relationship with and who cares about them.

So you mentioned a little bit ago about percentages of people who are open. Those same studies show these people are very willing to have conversations with someone they know if that person takes their faith seriously.

Yes.

And so it does seem to me that the movement today is ordinary people reaching out to friends and saying, “Would you be willing to read this book?” and, “Could we read it and discuss it together?”

You can say that, and I put discussion questions in the book, so if you want to do a small group study of it with non-believers or just a one-on-one friendship, the questions are already there, and you can get together and talk about it. And one of the interesting things—I mentioned these small groups that we do call spiritual discovery groups. We actually train our leaders of those groups how not to answer questions. Because we don't want them to feel like, “Oh, I'm on the hot seat. I’ve got to be the Bible answer man. I’ve got to be the Bible answer woman.” No. We teach them to ask more questions.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Good. Good.

Yeah. And I'll give you an example. Years ago, when I would meet someone who wasn't a Christian, often I would ask him the question, “If you could ask God any one question and you knew He’d give you an answer right now, what would you ask?” And I found that, about 80% of the time, it's some permutation of the question, “If God is real, why does He allow suffering in the world?” And so people—I'd ask people that question. They’d say, “Oh, yeah. Here’s the question I’d ask God: ‘If You’re real, why do You allow so much suffering?’” And then I would give a five-point sermon to them on why God allows suffering. And I have a chapter in my book that gives the apologetics and the defense of that. But I don't do that anymore with a friendship, with a relationship. I ask a follow-up question. I’d say, “Of all the potential questions in the universe, why did you ask that one?” And now they get personal. Now they say, “Because my wife was just diagnosed with cancer and I want to know where’s God in the middle of that.” Or, “We lost a child in childbirth five years ago. Where was God when that happened?” Now we're getting to the real issues, to the personal issues. And they don't need me to give them a five-point sermon on why God allows suffering, at least not right then. What they need me to be is Jesus to them, to put my arm around their shoulder, to encourage them, to weep with them, to empathize with them, to relate to them, and to bring a human touch to them. That's what they need at that moment.

And so I've learned through the years that apologetics, giving reasons and answers for the faith, it's fine, and it's important, and we need to do it many times. But let's not lose sight of the fact that the purpose of apologetics is evangelism, and we want to reach people with the gospel, and sometimes we don't reach them with a perfect answer to a tough question about faith. We reach them by being Jesus to them.

I want to talk to you about our Fellows Program. It's, I think, the core of what we do at the C.S. Lewis Institute. And I'll start by asking a question: Do you desire a deeper relationship with Jesus and also with other believers? Do you want to experience the power of a transformed life? Well, since 1999, the Fellows Program has helped transform the lives of thousands, really thousands, of people. And it has been commended by pastors and many other ministry leaders because of the dynamic impact that it has on individual people's lives and their local churches. The C.S. Lewis Institute Fellows Program offers a year of intensive discipleship that leads to significant life change. Unlike some other discipleship programs, the Fellows Program focuses on discipleship of both heart and mind, so it involves Bible study and classic readings and lectures and group processing, but it also includes personal spiritual mentoring and accountability, all in the context of a small group of like-minded believers. This year-long program is designed for those who want to live as fully committed disciples of Jesus Christ and who also want to make an impact for Him in the world. We have Fellows Programs now in seventeen cities. Please check it out on our website. It’s under the Fellows Program, but again, cslewisinstitute.org/fellows-program.

Yeah. I think what you're touching on is people are people. People are multi-faceted beings. We do need intellectual answers that satisfy our questions, and your writing does that really well. But we also need compassion and understanding and empathy, and, “Oh, my! That must be so difficult.” Or even on the other side. I mean if someone's not really being sincere, and they're being attacking, they need someone who will respond in a sense of, “Is that a real question? Because I don't get the idea that's really what you're wrestling with. Was that a question or was that an attack?” And so, again, you're treating the person as a whole person, trying to get down to, “Let’s have a real conversation. Let's not just throw things back and forth at each other.”

You know, Tim Keller, the late Tim Keller, did something unusual. When young men would come to him and say, “Yeah, Pastor. I'm kind of deconstructing my faith. I'm kind of…. Yeah. It’s kind of fallen apart, and I've got a lot of tough questions. I’m not so sure anymore.” And his response to them was, “Oh, what's her name?” There's a question that gets to the heart of things often. Let’s go right down to what the real motivation is here.

That is not where I thought that story was going to go. All right. I'm going back to your book. So let me just say, for our listeners, what I love about actually all of your books: You're weaving in these very, very good logical arguments and cases for, but every single chapter is an interview with someone, really a conversation.

Yes.

And so it's not just, “Here, let me tell you the five things you need to know.” It's, “I sat down with William Lane Craig. Oh, by the way, let me tell you William Lane Craig is. And tell you about his journey. And there we were, sitting in a coffee shop, and he said this, and I said, ‘Wait a minute. What do you mean by that?’” So it feels like you invited the reader to pull up a chair on these conversations. And again the information or the data, it's the same. But it just comes across much more incrementally, conversationally, and-

That’s…. I'm glad you said that, because I'm not the world's leading expert on all these tough issues. I just go find the world's leading experts, and I ask them the tough questions I've got, and we've all got, and I try to help them put the cookies on the bottom shelf, so we can all understand it. But I really see my role in the kingdom of God as a conduit. There are these scholars out there who are brilliant godly guys and gals who study an area of faith in depth, but so many of them, they just write for other scholars. And it's hard for them to write to everyday people. So I see myself—I use my journalism training and my legal training to question them and interview them to kind of be a conduit between the scholarly world and the everyday world. And I figure if I can get it down to the area where I can understand it, then anybody can understand it. And that's how God has kind of redeemed… because I was an atheist journalist at The Chicago Tribune. He's kind of redeemed not just my soul, but also the journalism training that I had, to use it for His glory.

Right. Yeah. I like that. I really like that. And the image of a conduit is exactly right. Because you're right. I mean, I've read some of these other people that you're interviewing, and yeah, they are great, and they are brilliant. But there are a whole lot of people who… they couldn't get past two or three sentences of these people. So you're coming in and translating or just helping take it incrementally, bite-sized pieces. So let me go after one of these, because where your book led…. Well, you start with things like the cosmos requires a creator, and you go and interview William Lane Craig. The universe needs a fine tuner, and you interview Michael Strauss, and so it's those kinds of things. I thought it was interesting…. like halfway, halfway through your book, is experiencing God.

Yeah.

And you interviewed Doug Groothuis.

It’s Groothuis, yeah.

So that's the chapter that stood out to me as like, “Okay, this is different. These are people's experiences,” emotional or dramatic experiences, which I don't think I've seen too much of that in a book like this. So dig into that for us a little bit.

Yeah. It’s interesting you ask about that, because it is unusual in my books to deal with this experiential side. But I did a book a few years ago called The Case for Miracles. And I commissioned a study, a national study, that found that 38% of American adults say they've had at least one experience in their life that they can only attribute to God. They’ve had some miraculous experience in their life. Now, if you say that 99% of them are wrong, that it was really just a big coincidence that seemed like it was from God, let's throw those out. And so now we’ve just got 1%. That still represents a million experiences with God in just North America, just in the United States. So here's the thing: For a person that has that kind of experience—and I’ll tell you about one in a second, but for a person who has that experience, it's very powerful, very profound, and often leads them directly to the Lord. If you've never had an experience like that, just reading about it from a credible source, I think, is encouraging and points you toward God. But one of my favorite examples is Evel Knievel.

Oh, I know! Yeah, I read that, and I thought, “Really? Is this true?”

He and I became friends after he became a Christian. Evel lived an evil life. I mean, let's face it. He was a drunk. He was a gambler. He had a woman in every city. He was an international celebrity. He once went to prison for beating up a business partner with a baseball bat. He was a tough guy. But he's standing on the beach in Florida where he lived later in his life. And he said, “I believe God spoke to me.” I said, “Did you hear him through your ears?” “No, no, no. I heard it inside of me.” And God said, “Robert,” which was his real name. “Robert, I've saved you more times than you’ll ever know. Now you need to come to Me through my Son Jesus.” And it just rocked him, because he said this was not a dream or a hallucination. This really happened! I said, “What did you do?” He said, “I only knew one Christian to go to,” and it was Frank Gifford, the sportscaster who was married to Kathy Lee Gifford at the time. And he calls Frank and said, “Frank, I had this experience with God. What do I do with it? Who's Jesus?” And Frank said, “Get that book The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel. That’ll kind of explain everything.” So Krystal Knievel, his wife, goes out and gets him a copy of the book. He reads the book. I’m telling you, Randy, he had one of the most profound born-again experiences of anybody I've ever encountered; 180-degree change in his life. He was radically transformed. So much so that he wanted to be baptized, so the whole world would know that he became a Christian.

So he called up—this is back years ago, when it was a big deal. He called up Robert Schuller from the Crystal Cathedral in California, which used to have a global television show of his services. He said, “I've become a Christian. I want to be baptized in your church to let the world know that I follow Jesus,” and Schuller thought, “Wait a minute. I’m not going to believe this.” So Schuller goes all the way to Florida to check him out and finds out, “Oh, my gosh! It’s true! This guy is as profoundly born again as anybody I’ve ever met!” So he comes to the Crystal Cathedral. He's going to be baptized. And they said, “Why don’t you tell your story?” And he looks out at the congregation and tells his story about encountering God. And he said, “I got to the point where I just said, ‘Devil, get out of my life! Just get out of here! I don't want you in my life anymore! I received this gift of God's grace. He changed my life.” He's just…. In this very childlike, sincere, simple way, he told his story, and then he started to say, “Have you met Jesus? Have you come to faith?” And Schuller’s son was going to preach that day. He ripped up his sermon and said, “You’ve heard the gospel.” And I don’t think they’d ever had an altar call back then, at the Crystal Cathedral. That’s not their style. But he said, “If anybody wants to come forward and receive Jesus right now and be baptized right now, come forward.” Seven hundred people came forward at two services and came to faith and were baptized on the spot. And it was unbelievable.

So I didn't know any of this. So I get a phone call one day. And the voice says, “Is this Lee Strobel?” I said, “Yes.” He said, “This is Evel.” And I thought, “My gosh! Satan has got my phone number. Can he do that? Is that…. Is this…. No, Evel Knievel. Oh, okay.” So we became good friends, and when he died about a year later, at his request, on his tombstone, where he's buried in Montana, it simply says, “Robert Evel Knievel. Believe in Jesus Christ.”

So here's a guy who had an experience with God that rocked him, changed him, put him on his knees to receive Jesus as his Lord and Savior. But I think nonbelievers, hearing that story and hearing about how God transformed his character and his values and his morality and his philosophy and his worldview and his behavior and all these things, I think it has an apologetic impact. It has an evidential impact on people.

Did you have any reluctance, though, to include these stories? Because that chapter is filled with those kinds of stories. And I mean, I'm sitting here listening, and I had this dual response: One is, “Oh, this is great! We’ve got to tell people this!” But I had a lot of years in campus ministry, where everything was logic and intellect and rational. And there's this side of me that goes, “I don't know if I want to tell people this stuff. It’s wacko.” So did you have any of that reluctance at all?

I really looked at people whose lives were authentically transformed. I talk about Nabeel Qureshi. I don't know if you knew Nabeel. He was a Muslim who had a supernatural dream, an encounter with God that changed his life. And I talk about Bob Passantino, a name you may not know, but who became a great apologist and evangelist. So these are people whose lives show the fruit of having come to an authentic faith in Christ through this experience that they had. So I kind of chose to tell those stories. Of course, Blaise Pascal had an incredible experience with God that rocked his world. And you can see through history, and I quote some of those other cases. But I think we have to be careful with quote-unquote testimonies. We have to be mindful that, if we're going to put them up as examples as someone who may have actually heard from God, we’d better be pretty confident that this is an authentic experience that did indeed permanently transform their life and character. But I don't know. Maybe the older I get, the more charismatic I get. I long for that intimate touch of God. And do I believe that God sometimes reaches into this world and does something miraculous and profound like that? Yeah. I think He does.

Have you thought about your spiritual legacy? If you were to die tonight, would you leave behind a clear message to your family, friends, and the whole world about your faith in Christ? Your love for them? Your hope for them? If not, what do you need to do to prepare for your leaving this earth? We have a resource on our website with answers and guidance in a new video by Joel Woodruff, our president of the C.S. Lewis Institute. And I think it's really helpful, and it gives guidance and insight about how to think through these issues and then how to prepare for them. And there's an informative, easy-to-understand format laced with I think some really good stories. So check it out at our website, under Spiritual Legacy. Or if you like, cslewisinstitute.org/spiritual-legacy.

And as you're telling these stories, I'm thinking about the blind man who got healed by Jesus, and his whole profound intellectual apologetic was, “Hey, I don't know Who He was or what He did or how He did it. Here’s what I know: I used to be blind. Now I see.”

Exactly.

And I'm sure the Pharisees, they rejected it. “Well, how could that be?” But it’s there. It's true.

What do you do with that? Chuck Swindoll once said that there is nothing, in many ways, nothing more powerful than a personal testimony about having your life changed by Jesus Christ. He said people can argue with your doctrine, they can debate your evidence, but they cannot honestly refute the fact that God has changed your life. And so our testimony—everybody who's a follower of Jesus has a testimony, has a story of how they encountered God and how they received Him, either over a period of time or at a specific point in time and how their life has been changed as a result. And I think sometimes we think, “Well, that Lee Strobel, he was an atheist, so he had a dramatic story! I don't have something like that.” And I say, “You know what? Only 5% of Americans are atheists.” My wife's testimony is, “I tried to be a good person. I thought that's how you got to God. I didn't understand God, didn't understand Jesus, and then I met a woman who shared the gospel with me. This is what the gospel is, this is how I received it, and this is how God changed my life.” And I said, “Leslie, more people are going to relate to that than they're going to relate to my story of being a hard-headed, hard-hearted atheist.

And I regularly tell people, “Well, maybe you didn't have that dramatic story. Okay. So tell people how God is making a difference in your life right now.”

Yes.

Here's how becoming a Christian has helped me in my marriage and my work, in my raising kids or whatever. So no, it's not the dramatic, “How I became a Christian,” but, “Here’s how my life would have been if I hadn’t become a Christian. Here's how it's working itself out every single day in very, very important ways.” You’re right. That may have more connection with a larger audience.

A number of years ago I wrote a book called The Case For Grace. And it was all about… every chapter was a life story, a story like Evel Knievel or whoever, who had a dramatic transformation. But these were dramatic cases. I had one guy who murdered 17,000 people. He was the head of the torture center for the Khmer Rouge.

Oh my!

And when the war ended, he fled into the jungle, became a Christian, lived like Mother Teresa in these villages in the middle of nowhere, serving people and loving people. And he later was discovered, and he confessed everything. “I admit it. I did it. It was wrong. I need to be punished.” And he was found guilty of genocide, and he’s locked up in a prison in Cambodia. And there's a pastor in California who's one of the few people who can visit him. And he goes out and he serves him communion. And one by one, this guy is leading the guards and the other prisoners to faith in Jesus Christ as an evangelist. But I had so many of these incredible stories that I thought, “Well, wait a minute! I’ve got to have a story of an average guy who was a good guy and a nice guy, and he realized, ‘I'm a sinner, and I need God. I need His forgiveness and His grace,’” and so I did a chapter on a guy who was just a nice guy and came to faith and how God changed his life. And I think a lot of people relate more to that than a guy who ran a torture center.

But putting both of those stories in this same book is really very important.

It is. It is. People need to see that, whatever your story is, God can use it to help reach people. And I like to encourage people to do that. And you never know. A simple story of understanding the gospel, and here's the gospel, and how it changed your life and how it’s changed—I like what you said, how it's changing it today. How just last week I had something come up that gave me stress and anxiety and pain, and yet I reached out to God, and I found peace and joy and love, even in the midst of the pain I'm going through. That kind of testimony, who can't relate to that?

Yeah, yeah. Oh, that's so good. Well, I'm really sorry that I couldn't find anything to draw you out.

You're awesome, Randy. We’ve got to get together. We don't live that far apart. We need to get together and have lunch.

That’s right. We're announcing through a podcast. Lee Strobel now lives in Houston, Texas. I live in Austin, Texas. That's only close by. We need to both escape to some place forty degrees cooler through July, August, and September. So we’ll do our next podcast from northern Scotland.

Oh, that's great!

Anyway. The book is called Is God Real? I think it's a great resource for Christians to learn a whole lot of lines of conversations they can have with non-Christians. It's a great book to give to non-Christians, to say, “Hey, I think you might be able to relate to some of these stories.”

Yeah.

So, Lee, thank you again for serving God's people and for advancing the kingdom. I recommend all of Lee’s books. And the movie The Case for Christ. What a great tool that is!

They did a great job with that movie. They showed it in a movie theater—a little church in New Zealand rented a movie theater and showed it, and twenty-two people came to faith.

Oh, it's…. I probably shouldn't say this. Maybe they'll edit this out. I didn't know what to expect. I knew the movie was coming out, and I had fears. “Oh, is this going to be a cheesy Christian movie?”

Yeah. Right.

It was great! It was really well done.

I can't take credit for it. It was Jon Gunn and Brian Bird and these other guys that got a vision for it, and God bless them. They kept the integrity of the story and presented it in a powerful and persuasive way. And I think it's still free on Amazon Prime. It was on Netflix for three years. So people can find it online.

That's so good! Yeah. And pointing people to that, so they can watch it online at home So, anyway, I'm gonna bring this to a close. I'll put a bunch of different links in the show notes.

Great.

To our listeners, thank you for tuning in, if I can use that phrase. Check out our other resources on our cslewisinstitute.org website. As always, we hope this podcast and all our resources help you love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind. Thanks.


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