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Dear Evangelicals, Bible Verses are Claims, Not Evidence


Dr. David Tee, whose real name is Derrick Thomas Thiessen, continues to misuse and misattribute my content, writing several posts about me virtually every week, saying he is just using my copyrighted material to teach believers — all ten of them who read his blog, anyway. I have largely ignored Thiessen’s posts, but a recent one titled Do They [Unbelievers] Really Want a Discussion? deserves a response.

Thiessen wrote:

Over the years we have had discussions with a variety of unbelievers and people who claim to be Christian. They have not always gone well. We are not trying to evangelize these people but work hard to plant and water seeds in them.


They usually do not want an open-minded discussion. Their minds remain closed and they only want the believer to be open-minded to their views and points. if they want to have an open honest discussion, then the unbeliever cannot simply dismiss the points made by the believer.


That specific unbeliever [Bruce Gerencser] already knows that science, archaeology, and other secular topics do not cover, fully support, or provide the information he is willing to listen to. That means he only hears what he wants to hear and can freely remain in his unbelief without guilt.


This is why we have stopped talking to many unbelievers. They just do not want to hear the truth and they want to shield themselves from what God has to say. A believer is not allowed to have an open and honest discussion because they are already forbidden to include what their belief is and where they came to that belief.

To be truly objective, the unbeliever has to be open to everything involved in the discussion and that includes quotes from the Bible. One cannot prove the Bible true without using bible verses as part of their examples and points.


Those Bible verses needed to present one’s point of view are backed up by both science and archaeology. Without that reference point, it is impossible to refute the arguments made by the unbeliever. One cannot appeal to both science and archaeology to prove a point if one cannot bring pertinent bible verses into the discussion.


BG [Bruce Gerencser] has our email address and if he has a list of questions he wants answered, then we would be happy to answer them for him. But we will not get involved in a discussion. He won’t like the answers but the truth is the truth and he does not have it anymore.

Thiessen wrongly thinks that I have doubts about the existence of God, Jesus, and Christianity. I don’t. I am fully persuaded that the Christian God is a myth, Jesus is a man who lived and died, and the central claims of Christianity are false. I have weighed these things in the balance and found them wanting. I don’t have questions that need answering, and even if I did, I would never, never go to a disgraced preacher who lacks understanding of basic Christianity — especially soteriology — for answers. If I want answers to religious questions, I seek out experts, not hateful, mean-spirited, argumentative Evangelical preachers.

Now to the focus of this post. Evangelicals, including Thiessen, think if they quote a Bible verse, they have provided evidence for their claim. This is not true. Bible verses are claims, not evidence. Evangelicals claim Jesus was born of a virgin, and give several Bible verses (which they grossly misinterpret) to justify their claim. However, these verses are not evidence of the virgin birth. They are claims, and if Evangelicals want me to believe that a teen girl named Mary was impregnated by God (the Holy Ghost) without consent and gave birth to a God-man named Jesus, they must provide more evidence than “the Bible says.” Of course, there is no evidence for the virgin birth apart from the Bible. The same can be said for many Evangelical beliefs.

When I ask for “evidence,” I am asking for more than proof texts. I am more than happy to talk about the Bible, but when Evangelicals appeal to the Bible as the sole source of evidence for their claims, I am going to call foul. First, there is no evidence that the Bible is anything other than a fallible, errant, contradictory ancient compilation of religious writings. Believing the Bible is God’s inerrant, infallible words is a faith claim, one for which Evangelicals can provide no evidence apart from saying “I believe it to be true.” Second, the central claims of Christianity rest on a foundation of faith — a faith I do not have. I refuse to ignore evidence and facts and just faith-it.

Ninety-nine percent of the emails and messages I receive from Evangelical preachers and apologists are filled with Bible verses and regurgitated arguments and claims. No new arguments, no new claims, just the same old shit, new day. I would love to hear a new argument, but none have been forthcoming for sixteen years. I am open to new evidence for the claims of Christianity, but I highly doubt any is coming. I spent 20,000 hours reading and studying the Bible. I preached over 4,000 sermons. I have read countless theological tomes. I am confident that I have a comprehensive understanding of Christianity. If the Thiessens of the Evangelical world have new evidence for their claims, I am more than willing to hear them out. However, regurgitating the same things over and over again is not helpful nor persuasive, and I wish the Evangelicals who contact me would realize this. Alas, they don’t, so I must endure email after email of quoted — often misused — Bible verses, appeals to Pascal’s Wager, heretical theological beliefs, threats of judgment and Hell, and questions asking me if I have ever read this or that book.

Do better, Evangelicals, do better.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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  1. Avatar

    Bruce, I think you should give Dr. T permission to use your material. I’m convinced that no one reads his blog so the net effect isn’t any different. (So I think you’re off by 10)

    Dr. T is correct about one thing. I do think we tend to protect our viewpoints. I notice I do it as well. That said, I presume nothing he writes is convincing, it is too boring for me to bother reading.

    • Avatar
      Bruce Gerencser

      Everyone, Thiessen included, has permission to use my writing as long as they give proper attribution. Thiessen refuses to do so. In fact, he won’t even mention my full name or link to this site. Why? Best I can tell is that he just wants to be a prick 🍆🤣

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    Dr Tee seems to think some of us unbelievers are burdened with guilt about not believing. Guilt about lacking superstition? That’s confusing but maybe confusion is intended. Dr Tee also writes about planting seeds in people and watering them. Probably just a metaphor but I wouldn’t turn my back on him. Just sayin. There’s a term called bootstrapping for what Dr Tee tries to define as evidence. It simply means trying to prove something without independent support. “It’s true because I say so” is what we call hearsay and that’s not proof of anything. So Dr Tee, just grab your bootstraps and and see how high you can lift yourself off the ground. You will see this doesn’t work. Evidence is clearly not a required course in Bible College and likely not an elective either. If evidence were a required course in all schooling, I suspect we wouldn’t have the current political circus with a candidate insisting up is down because he says so.

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    MJ Lisbeh

    At an old job, I was hauled into the HR Department because someone with greater influence than mine in the organization took umbrage at my pointing out a fallacy in one of his religious assertions–and for saying that most religions work in a similar way.

    I have come to realize that in religion, politics or almost any other area of life, the less a person’s opinions can be supported by reality, the more apoplectic that person becomes when those opinions are challenged. And when they realize they have no rational, cogent argument available to them, they resort to ad hominem attacks.

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    ... Zoe ~

    Zoe: They usually do not want an open-minded discussion. Their minds remain closed and they only want the unbeliever to be open-minded to their views and points. if they want to have an open honest discussion, then the believer cannot simply dismiss the points made by the unbeliever.

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    Thiessen: I need to use the Bible to prove what’s in the Bible is true.
    Bruce: That’s circular reasoning.
    Thiessen: Satan! You don’t want to listen to me because Satan!
    Bruce: Where’s the archeological, historical, and scientific proof you have?
    Thiessen: Satan! Of course I have it, but you can’t understand it because Satan!
    Bruce: Try me.
    Thiessen: Satan! Get thee behind me Satan!
    Bruce: Sigh…..

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        I think anyone trying to get anyone else to change their mind about anything is in for a world of pain -ongoing frustration.

        Human beings don’t enjoy being told they’re wrong.

        I guess those of us drawn to discussions should try to avoid these discussions with those on the other side. Unless we have a very thick skin, it leads to hurt feelings or more demonizing of the other side.

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      Bingo. A smidgen of proof would be nice. It’s what my atheist in-laws want. “Just give me a reason to believe the bloodthirsty, barbecuing god (or any god for that matter) exists and I actually might consider it.”
      But nope. All you get is, “Everything in the Bible is true because it says it’s true.”

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    I agree with Bruce on this post (me agreeing with Bruce must be proof of divine miracles!).

    Christians in general, but evangelical Christians in particular “spread the Word,” by babbling biblical scripture to people who are either hostile to the Bible or people who have no idea about the Bible.

    The second best way for Christians to comingle with their unchurched brethren is by simple testimony: “I have seen God face to face and lived.” “I have seen my wretched life pass before my mind’s eye in a few seconds and fainted in terror and then went hysterically blind.” “God has given me insight into the meaning of scripture that is unique, but consistent with orthodox teachings.”

    The first, best way for Christians to comingle with their unchurched brethren is by the way we act in everyday life. Personally, I, Jasper, pour myself out as a libation into my work and into each interaction I have with people everyday.

    Atheists do that too. And by the looks of it, atheists are doing a far better job of it then so called Christians.

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      Oh wow, Tee gets more insane with every post he writes! He bleats on an on about how atheists don’t follow the evidence, choosing instead to portray their own predetermined agenda, without ever once trying to understand that atheists are atheists because they regard his position as unevidenced. He chooses not to interact with people because he’d get steamrollered, made to look even more stupid than he already looks (no rational person would regard him as anything other than unhinged). He complains that those looking to speak and write about Christianity consult the wrong types of people, and not those (tiny numbers) who represent Tee’s point of view. Well it’s called seeking out expertise. It’s like asking whether it’s better when you are ill to consult a medically qualified doctor, or a tribal witch doctor, who thinks you can be cured by dancing naked round a fire waving a stick. Tee is the latter, though I’m trying not to visualise the event.

      One small point demonstrates his disingenuous nature. He refers to Josephus as being dismissed by atheists as a historian because his writings are a forgery (he also says that there are numerous, non biblical, historians at the time who refer to Jesus: there aren’t. There are perhaps three, Josephus, Tacitus, and Pliny, and all are unbelievably brief and vague). Bart Ehrman, and other proper bible scholars, acknowledge that Josephus does make reference to Jesus, and he represents evidence that Jesus actually did exist. Josephus has two references attributed to him, however, and it’s considered on balance (with quite high probability) that the more ‘flowery’ of his references is, indeed, either entirely forged or else very much massaged at a later date by Christian writers.

      I can’t get my head round just how ridiculous a person Tee is. I have little doubt that he does not have a responsible job, as it’s inconceivable he would be able to discharge duties on his own initiative. His supervisor must have to monitor him very closely.

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      #3. Evangelicals,… think if they quote a Bible verse, they have provided evidence for their claim.
      This is not true. Bible verses are claims, not evidence.

      Quoth Dr. T:
      “Actually, quoting Bible verses is evidence. The Bible is a historical document and it is often the only document that records these events. Quoting the Bible is the same as quoting any other history archaeologist or even scientist by the atheist.”

      Sorry Doc T, but just because the Bible contains some historical accounts, doesn’t make it an irrefutable “historical document”. For example one merely needs to look at the four Gospels that are mutually contradictory.

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        Quoth Dr. T:
        “Actually, quoting Bible verses is evidence. The Bible is a historical document and it is often the only document that records these events. Quoting the Bible is the same as quoting any other history archaeologist or even scientist by the atheist.”

        It would be the same if one quoted the Book of Mormon or any other supposedly holy book. Quoting any of them as evidence rather than quoting them as claims falls flat.

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        So does that mean Dr. T also believes the Koran is true because it’s a historical document? How about the hundreds of Buddhist sutras? Or the Hindu Vedas? Surely they must also be true since you can quote verses from them and they have historical significance.

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    Jeff Bishop

    Hello Bruce,
    Once again, thank you for the E-mail. My response, I agree with statements previously provided by others, Christian Apologies are not interested in facts, historical research that uses non biblical source materials, archeology, geology, paleontology, scientific dating methods, or common sense.

    It’s actually frightening that a cult that emerged in the first century AD is still all around us, with 10’s or 100’s of thousands of buildings, in almost every town, community or city, dedicated to mind control and cult insanity.

    And Americans consider our society “enlightened and advanced”. Well these cultists may end the American Experience, the constitution, the legacy of the founding fathers and the visions and sacrifice of such leaders as George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, FDR, Ronald Regan and Barrack Obama.

    Not to mention the destruction of foreign policy initiatives paid for with much blood and capital since the end of WW2.

    IMO the cultist “Prosperity Evangelical Christian Movement” of whom one is currently Speaker of the House of Representatives, has pledged fealty to the most disgusting, P.O.S. political demagogue, that may have ever infiltrated the American political system.

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    Strange how you allow comments and welcome it, while he has no comments on his writing. As if he wants to preach and not have discussion.
    I love how he responded to your post, and most of what you wrote went right over his head. He really needs to look at the outsiders test of faith. He doesn’t accept Mormon doctrine, he doesn’t accept muslim doctrine. Why? They can and do the exact same things and claims with their books that he is doing with his book. Why is him pointing to a book proof, while a Mormon pointing at the Pearl of Great Price not?

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    MJ Lisbeth

    Solmead—I was thinking exactly what you wrote in your first paragraph. And your second is spot-on.

    One would think that, by now, he could’ve come up with better arguments than the ones about evolution and Josephus. Geoff addressed the latter. About the former: Scientists won’t tell you that evolution is a certainty. But there is more evidence for it than for any other theory about the origins of species, which is why it is a basis of modern life science. There is no such physical evidence for anything Dr. Tee claims with certainty.

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    Lately, I’ve thought a lot about Bruce’s atheism.

    Christians believe that God is a bloodthirsty killer. But Deists and Ietsists believe God is a loving, divine Providence.

    The original Pascal’s Wager says that you should believe in Christianity, because if God doesn’t exist, you lose nothing when you die. But if you believe in Christianity and God does exist, you gain everything when you die. Either way you win.

    But Deists and Ietsists have a different take on Pascal’s Wager. If you’re an atheist and there is no God, you lose nothing when you die. But if you’re an atheist and there is a God, you get a lovely surprise when you wake up in heaven. Either way you win.

    If the second version of Pascal’s Wager is true (which I believe), then Bruce and all the other atheists will get a lovely surprise when they wake up in heaven.

    Only problem is, the Christians will be up there grumbling that the sinners didn’t get what was coming to them.

  11. Avatar
    Davie from Glasgow

    The world generally is drifting towards a battle – that may even become all our war – versus those who believe in authoritarianism, who hate individual freedom, and who push ‘traditional values’ versus those who believe in democracy and freedom. To my horror, worldwide I think more people believe in the former. But then bring imaginary friends and the books they supposedly wrote into it – and the anti-freedom, democracy-hating mob all start fighting among themselves! Who can say where it will all end. But in the 1940s particularly, tens of millions of people worldwide joined together as Antifa and tried to eradicate fascism from the Earth. Any remaining survivors of that time will be crying salt tears to see how far it has returned across the globe.

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