Over the course of this ten-article series, this column has examined a list of questions leveled by skeptic R. E. Puckett in his Yahoo Voices segment entitled "Top 50 Questions Christians Can't Answer." Once a believer himself, Puckett became convinced that Christianity does not hold up under the light of intellectual scrutiny, and that when the curtain is pulled back, the basis of Christianity is a naive optimism that blinds the believer to the harsh realities of the rational world.
When examined, Puckett's questions reveal a number of preconceptions about Christian beliefs that do not match up with what the majority of Evangelicals hold. Possibly most damaging among them, Puckett seems to believe that Christians must confess every sin they commit individually as they commit them, or risk being damned. The majority of Protestant Christians believe that, in fact, the repentant Christian falls under God's grace, and that even when they sin, they are covered by the protection and forgiveness that Christ's sacrifice affords them.
It is with this in mind that a second assumption that Puckett holds is addressed: Puckett seems to believe that, if Christianity were true, Christians should be saintly humans, unaffected by temptation or error. In fact, Christians are as capable of error as anyone. However, a true Christian will recognize and repent of their missteps rather than justifying or defending them.
In fact, Puckett's persistent attacks on the actions and character of Christians is evidence that Puckett himself holds a conviction that humans are prone to bad behavior. If Puckett can recognize that bad behavior exists and should justly be condemned, he has already taken the first step toward a Christian understanding of the world.
In this series of questions, Puckett attacks a wide variety of what he believes are Christian views. It is important to note that even if Christians can answer none of these questions; if they can show with evidence that Jesus actually rose from the dead, the second step of the Christian worldview has been taken.
Puckett himself shows that humans need to be redeemed from their ill behavior, and evidence shows that just such a redeemer exists.
Ultimately, the proof of Christ's resurrection is the single point upon which Christianity stands or falls. Mountains of evidence to support this fact have been presented over a 2000-year span; and these facts require an answer of all who want to disenchant believers. Puckett, and anyone else who seeks to dismantle Christian beliefs need only show that Christ was not raised, and they have accomplished their purpose. No other question need be asked.
Within this list Puckett has criticized drunken irresponsibility, tyranny, deception, divorce, murder, discrimination, condemnation of the innocent, intentional ignorance, and incest. Clearly Puckett has set up a standard from which it is possible to condemn these things, however Puckett makes no defense for his standard of right and wrong. If Christianity is "wrong," it is incumbent upon the critic to show what is "right," and by what standard right and wrong are determined.
Without further commentary, here are the final five question in the Puckett list: