The Forge is a monthly Thinking Matters gathering held in Tauranga (Bethlehem Community Church) which seeks to deepen people’s understanding and awareness of various Christian issues and culturally relevant topics discussed from a biblical worldview.
Every month, we invite a guest speaker to present on a given topic with periodic breaks in their talk to encourage discussion both with the speaker and those around you. The point of this is to allow you to soak up the information you just heard, process it with your neighbors, and perhaps even challenge others with a different point of view.
A forge is a place where a blacksmith “makes or shapes an object by heating it in a fire or furnace and hammers it to create something strong, enduring and successful”. This definition is what our vision was built on. Our desire is for these interactive events to be a place where messy and difficult topics can be cleaned up, re-shaped, and smoothed out to help uncover God’s beautiful designs in this crazy world.
The Case for the Resurrection | How Can We Know Jesus Rose from the Dead?
Presented by Michelle Englehardt
The Resurrection of Jesus is pivotal to our Christian faith. Without the Resurrection, Christianity immediately loses its foundation and meaning. Yet, how many of us can defend the Resurrection as a true event well-grounded in human history? When the world tells us that to believe in the Resurrection of Jesus is to foolishly believe in myths and fairy-tales, can we respond with clarity and truth? Yes, we can. Join Michelle as she looks at the compelling evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Having completed the RZIM Academy Core Module in 2018, Michelle is currently studying towards a Certificate in Apologetics through Biola University as a potential Masters student. Michelle believes passionately that apologetics training is vital for Christian evangelism in today’s culture. Working full time as a Community Programmes Specialist, Michelle lives in Tauranga with her youngest daughter, Eden and writes when she can for the Thinking Matters Blog
The Scientific Evidence for the Existence of God
Presented by Rodney Lake | National Director | Thinking Matters
Everything that begins to exist has a cause – including the universe itself. Is there any scientific or philosophical evidence for a creator as a cause of the Big Bang? In this presentation we examine the nature of the Big Bang and look at the evidence a divine supernatural cause was at work. We’ll also examine how the original purpose of science as a way of understanding the natural world around us has become distorted, resulting in biased outcomes in scientific inquiry that unnecessarily exclude the possibility of God.
Rodney Lake is the National Director of Thinking Matters NZ Foundation, a national Christian apologetics ministry that encourages Christians to know the reasons why we believe what we believe. Rodney speaks at churches, youth groups, conferences and to non-believers at outreach events around the country on the reasons why Christianity is true. He teaches staff, parents and youth at various Christian schools, and is an adjunct apologetics lecturer at Faith Bible College and Bethlehem Tertiary Institute. He teaches regular ‘Introduction to Christianity’ courses to parents at Bethlehem College and serves on the board of Bethlehem College Limited.
He is passionate about seeing people loving and seeking God with all of their mind, developing a resilient faith that is supported with solid reasons to believe, while confidently and graciously sharing that faith with others. See More About Rodney >
Thinking Matters is a ministry encouraging New Zealand Christians to explore WHAT they believe and WHY they believe it, so they can engage culture and present the Christian faith both gracefully and persuasively.
We do this through training in apologetics, worldview, culture, and evangelism.