How to evangelize to a genius Gnostic?

This might all be in vain anyway as this person has said they don’t want to debate me because I can “edit reality” (don’t know if he views this as a gift or a curse from context).

He seems to be very knowledgeable regarding the arguments I would come up with - even at one time mocking my understanding of Daniel as it pertains to apologetics.

IDK what Gnostics believe. He says the cult has very few groups left worldwide and it’s a dead religion. He also doesn’t talk about his beliefs. Help?

Hey, Jesse! This is a very interesting situation you are in. What kind of things are you guys debating? And is he ignoring your questions about what he believes? It can be quite difficult to debate/converse/evangelise when one doesn’t know where the other stands!

Hi, thanks for your inquiry.

IDK if he is simply ignoring saying what he believes or cloaking his beliefs with other ways of saying things that are not direct. As I am in the religious section of the forum the majority of the time, we are usually debating things pertaining to Christianity. Like I said, he debates, but doesn’t argue from the POV of what he personally believes but instead what is “logical” or “accepted scinence”. Naturally, when I talk about Daniel and say we have some manuscripts from the Dead Sea Scrolls that inferr that it’s completely reasonable to believe Daniel prophesied rather than writing about PAST events and he kinda gives a mocking one liner, I do not know what to think. I know after there was more discussion on it with myself and an Atheist and him, he came around to thinking it was possible Daniel was prophesizing, but IDK if Gnostics would/could just as well believe that or where/when/if he even changed his mind on anything. I recalled in my conversation with the Athesist that I said Daniel prophesied of Jesus so Daniel couldn’t have been just saying things about the past and rather than the atheist saying, “Daniel wasn’t talking about Jesus” he said, “What’s your point?” So POSSIBLY this is what the Gnostic saw and acted on that, IDK. It’s a complex thing to be sure. That same atheist recently called me Satan and a false prophet even though he is an atheist. I got the sense he was trying to create division between myself and another believer from Hong Kong.

The Gnostic often uses things like parables to get his point across such as likening things of the Spiritual to Marvel characters. The guy is really really smart. He said he has an IQ of 180, which is quite something because there are probably less than 100 people on earth with that IQ rn. Anyways, whether he actually has an IQ of a literal 180 or if he is just saying that to say he is really smart, IDK, but I have been able to tell the guy is pretty smart. He doesn’t really talk openly about his beliefs. He sometimes alludes to them, but doesn’t say anything like, “I believe X for Y reason” nothing that direct.

Any help would be welcomed.

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Just to help clarify; we are talking about a Gnostic (who view that matter is evil and the spirit is good, and it doesn’t matter what you do in your body as it doesn’t effect your spirit/soul?), not an Agnostic (one who is not sure that God exists)?

As in, the Gnostic gospels/writings the early church fathers rejected?

https://margmowczko.com/adam-and-eve-in-gnostic-literature/

Would he describe himself as a so called 'Christian Gnostic?"

Gnosticism was perhaps the most dangerous heresy that threatened the early church during the first three centuries. Influenced by such philosophers as Plato, Gnosticism is based on two false premises. First, it espouses a dualism regarding spirit and matter. Gnostics assert that matter is inherently evil and spirit is good. As a result of this presupposition, Gnostics believe anything done in the body, even the grossest sin, has no meaning because real life exists in the spirit realm only.

William Lane Craig writes some fairly in depth thoughts about Gnosticism here:

So the atheist was trying to cause division between you and the other gentleman? No big surprise I suppose. :slight_smile: Ask the atheist if they believe in a self-creating universe and perhaps share something like Lennox’s refutation of Stephen Hawkin from here: https://www.rzim.org/read/just-thinking-magazine/stephen-hawking-and-god such as this little snippet:

Take, for instance, Hawking’s statement quoted above: “Because there is a law of gravity the universe can and will create itself from nothing.” Clearly, he assumes that gravity (or perhaps only the law of gravity?) exists. That is not nothing. So the universe is not created from nothing.

Worse still, the statement “the universe can and will create itself from nothing” is self-contradictory. If I say, “X creates Y,” this presupposes the existence of X in the first place in order to bring Y into existence. If I say “X creates X,” I presuppose the existence of X in order to account for the existence of X. To presuppose the existence of the universe to account for its existence is logically incoherent.

Perhaps you could ask him what he thinks of the Cosmological Kalam arugment (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6CulBuMCLg0) or the Moral Law Giver (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxiAikEk2vU)

… so back to the Gnostic. maybe ask him questions that lean towards the Moral category (How does he tell right from wrong?).

Maybe ask him “if Gnosticism is true, and it doesn’t matter what we do in our physical bodies, why is this not carried to our law courts as a legal defense?”. Ask about a hypothetical, but quite personal serious fictitious crime committed against someone he loves such as a close family member. Ask him, if the person who committed this crime (in the physical world) just brushes you off and says ‘oh I’m a Gnostic so it doesn’t matter what I do in the physical world’; does that sound like justice? does that hold water in our legal system? Ask him, if Hitler was a Gnostic, would that make him innocent?

just a few thoughts, hopefully others share something better… :slight_smile:

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Hi Jesse,
These notes regarding Gnostic heresy were in the introduction of 1 John in my study Bible. Might be of interest?

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Welcome Jesse! Have you read The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel? It’s a great example of what you and I and many Christian disciples are dealing with. As the Bible says, “There’s nothing new under the sun.” RZIM Connect is, in my opinion, one of the best, if not the top resource for learning how to deal with intellectual agnostics / atheists. Ravi Zacharias has at least one series on this subject that I know of and have learned a great deal from. So you are in the right place. I offer you one very precious lesson the Holy Spirit has taught me: I must always go back to the Cross and not be motivated by my fleshly desire to win the argument or to “win” another lost soul into God’s Kingdom. I have to remember the basics from start to finish: First pray, then minister with love, focus on the Cross, plant the see and back off when prompted by the Holy Spirit, God is in control, not me. Sometimes it’s very difficult for me to do this because BC (before Christ) I was a hard-core control freak and there are still traces of it to this that the Lord is burning and removing the dross from. I have 3 family members who love to argue about God’s existence and validity of the Bible. After 12 years, I have actually seen their resistance wearing down. It’s a very slow process,but it’s like waiting for water to boil. At first you don’t see any evidence, but when you walk away and come back you start to see small bubbles. And each time you return they increase. But it’s at that first sign of small bubbles that you have hope and you know the water will reach the height of it’s boiling point. One lat thing, Jesse, don’t stop praying for them because your prayers will not only be for their benefit; you will grow in faith and relationship to Jesus. Your obedience to Him will serve to reveal His will for your life and He will reveal howto proceed in due time. Please keep us updated on how this challenge progresses. I think we can all use help with this challenge. God Bless and Strengthen You.

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Thank you so much for the recources @matthew.western. I am listening to that podcast from William Lane Craig rn. Thank you for the other recources as well.

And thank you @Alix. I appreciate the encouragement. I am sure you can see I am facing an uphill battle.

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Jesse, don’t forget, the battle is not yours, but God’s.
[2 Chronicles 20:15](https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2 Chronicles+20:15&version=KJV)

[](https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2 Chronicles+20:15&version=KJV)

Bible Gateway passage: 2 Chronicles 20:15 - King James Version

And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the L…

And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the Lord unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s.

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