University of Florida - Gainesville, Florida
April '08 ReasonableFaith.org Newsletter
by William Lane Craig
From February 26-29 Jan and I traveled south to Florida, where I spoke at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Northern Florida has the feel of the Deep South--very rural, trees dripping with Spanish moss, cheap motels and billboards lining the highway, ramshackle houses with animals in the front yards, and so on. The University of Florida even has a large lake on campus with alligators living in it! We came at the invitation of the local Campus Crusade group and Faculty Commons, the Crusade ministry to faculty. The morning after our arrival I spoke to a faculty breakfast of over 60 professors on "Dawkins' Delusion." There were a good number of non-Christian faculty present, including a philosophy prof who told me that he uses my book God: A Debate as a required text in one of his classes! I don't think I've ever had such a stimulating Q & A at a faculty outreach. Although professors may be brilliant in their chosen fields, most of them are like uneducated laymen when it comes to Christianity. But this group was extraordinary in the penetrating and interesting questions they asked. Our time together showed how the Christian worldview properly claims a place at the table in discussions at the university.
That evening I spoke to a crowd of a few hundred students on the top three questions University of Florida students have about God. Several weeks prior to our visit, the Crusade students surveyed around 1,000 students on what one question they would ask God, and they sent me the top three responses. These were, in order, (1) the meaning and purpose of life, (2) the problem of suffering, and (3) the existence of God. So those formed the substance of my one-hour talk. Afterward I answered questions for 45 minutes. In contrast to our earlier outreach at Georgia Tech, this Q & A seemed to be dominated by Christian students. Although I prefer dialoguing with non-believers, I've come to see how important it is to strengthen and encourage these Christian students as well.All active news articles