The skeptic and seeker's guide for investigating
religions and world-views through debate, interview,
analysis, and discussion.
The web journal of Godsearch, Inc. (formerly entitled Point/Counterpoint).
What is ENCOUNTER?
The primary purpose of ENCOUNTER is to provide a service for those who are seeking spiritual truth and to help to stimulate others to enter this search. Competing religions and secular beliefs will be evaluated. This is not a one-sided presentation. This is not to say that differing views will be present in every article, but they will not be difficult to find in the topic list or table of contents. Usually we will also provide links to opposing views.
As the name indicates, we seek to provide the reader with an encounter with well thought out arguments, reflection, and dialogue. But ultimately, we hope to aid you in coming to encounter our Creator, the source of our greatest possible fulfillment.
Our orientation is biblical Christianity and we believe that anyone who honestly and earnestly seeks spiritual truth from God (on nothing more than the possibility that God is there and deserves our highest love and commitment) will discover that this position is true. But the truth or falsity of this claim must finally be determined by your own inquiry. The first step is simply and honestly to seek God. Simply say, "If you're there, I want to find you. I only seek the One who deserves my ultimate commitment and my deepest love; if you're there, I give you all that you ask of me, all that you have right to from my life. I desire to have the truth and I will accept and act on it as you show me." From our own experience and the testimony of others (some documented herein), we think that if you honestly ask this of God, you will be given the truth. Whether it comes directly through experience or more indirectly through information and evidence God allows to cross your path, still it will come. If you've made this prayer, much of the material in Encounter is intended to help answer questions and to provide some of the evidence you're looking for.
We want you to reach your own conclusions, so we intend to present the various reasons for and against the different positions as objectively and forcefully as possible. We will use interviews and debates with influential and knowledgeable religious and non-religious leaders and thinkers. Also, we want to continue the discussion far beyond initial article, debate, dialogue, or interview. So we do welcome your email (see Contact Me at bottom of page) and phone calls (303-363-REASON or 303-363-7327).
For phone calls, we will usually be available from 6-8pm weekdays (US Mountain Time, 12-2am GMT) but you can try calling any normal day hours. If we are not in, leave a message and phone number and mention that you are calling regarding content on the Encounter website.
What is Christianity?
We have stated that our own search has brought us to believe biblical Christianity to be true. We need to be very clear as to what we believe this means.
Above all else this means that we were created to know our Creator and the deep relationship with God we were meant to have can be restored. All that separates us can be removed because of the death of the Messiah, Jesus. This can be ours if we seek and entrust ourselves to God, committing ourselves to and trusting in Jesus and his death to accomplish this, and forsaking all that separates us from God. Our sins, past and present, separate us from God. Our thoughts, words, actions--even our desires and inclinations--which harm others and ourselves or which deny or usurp that which rightfully belongs to God, ourselves, or others would be called sin.
But how is it that this relationship with God can be restored? The God we seek must be absolutely perfect. Anything less would make God unworthy of our ultimate commitment and love. But our sin alienates us from such a perfect God, removing the close relationship we need. Sin must be removed, yet we cannot erase what we have done nor completely cease to do evil. We must find One who is able to remove the sin that we cannot remove. God's Son—a sinless man and yet one who is more than a mere man—was able to remove our sin by becoming our substitute, bearing in our place our sin and death. So God provided the means by which God can see us as sinless.
We come to recognize the extreme cost, the extreme pain God endured (all that Jesus endured, the One he called his Father also endured) to reconcile us and to keep us from the judgment we deserve for any evil we have done. With this awareness we are drawn to seek and to love God, to follow God's will, and to keep from anything that would alienate us from God. God's will is that we cease from evil and that we become deeply involved in the needs of others. Because of God's sacrifice we come to recognize the unimaginable worth of each person, including and especially those we would consider to be of least significance.
We will never be without sin in this life, yet for the follower of Jesus this effort becomes a continuing process. We are to continually seek God's deliverance from anything that would draw us to evil, to harm anyone, to deny anyone's essential human rights.
Site under construction
We thank you for your patience as we gradually reinstall the very large number of articles, interviews, debates, etc. which have accumulated over the years. They had been available previously at www.GodSearch-Journal.org. The reader will occasionally notice some text in bold print which does not appear to be placed there for emphasis. This is merely text which will eventually be linked to a reference page (as soon as this site can be completed).
A number of articles, debate responses, etc. were written by myself (Dennis Jensen) and some of my views have changed over the years. I will try to note the date of the writings.