NORM GEISLER: NOT QUALIFIED is a 2021 documentary showing around the country about one of the top Christian apologists and scholars in the last two centuries. Norm Geisler wrote more than 100 books defending the Christian faith and the Bible. He became a world-renowned mentor and source of knowledge and wisdom for many people. The movie includes clips of him teaching and of the Christian leaders discussing his influence. It also tells the story of a preacher’s daughter who lost her faith then found it again by interacting with Norman Geisler’s teachings and ministry.
NORM GEISLER: NOT QUALIFIED is an incredibly informative, inspiring documentary. It has great insights and truths about knowledge, morality, Jesus, Christianity, and the Gospel, not the least of which is Dr. Geisler’s powerful defense of the inerrancy of the Bible. “If you disbelieve in inerrancy, then you reject the authority of Jesus Christ,” Geisler says in the movie. “You don’t have to give up your reason to become a Christian,” he adds elsewhere. NORM GEISLER: NOT QUALIFIED shows how Geisler mentored and influenced many Christian leaders for 50 years.
(CCC, BBB, V, N, DD):
Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Very strong Christian, Christocentric, biblical worldview defending the Bible, Christianity and the Gospel of Jesus Christ
No foul language
Some newsreel footage featuring light, brief war violence and protest riots/violence
No sexual content
Brief upper male nudity in 1960s newsreel footage at a rock festival
No alcohol use
Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
Some brief newsreel footage showing tobacco smoking and use of marijuana; and,
Nothing else objectionable.
NORM GEISLER: NOT QUALIFIED is a 2021 documentary still showing around the country about one of the top Christian apologists and scholars in the last two centuries, who wrote more than 100 books defending the Christian faith and the Bible and who became a world-renowned mentor and definitive source of knowledge for many people. NORM GEISLER: NOT QUALIFIED is an incredibly informative, inspiring documentary with many great insights and truths about knowledge, wisdom, Jesus, Christianity, and the Gospel, not the least of which is Dr. Geisler’s powerful defense of the inerrancy of Scripture, the Holy Bible.
After a short introduction, the movie details the early life of Norman Geisler. A farm boy from a small town outside Detroit, Michigan, Dr. Geisler actually was illiterate until age 17. At that age, in 1950, he accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. He started working for a Billy Graham youth ministry, preaching in jails and on street corners, telling people about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Bible.
One day, however, a drunk on Skid Row stumped him with a Bible verse Geisler didn’t understand. So, Geisler decide he had a lot of studying to do. He either had to get answers or stop witnessing to other people. So, he got two Bachelor’s Degree, two Master’s Degree and finally a Doctorate Degree. Before getting those answers and those degrees, however, he had one major obstacle. He was still virtually illiterate! “God has a sense of humor,” Geisler notes in a video recorded before his death.
At the time he first started studying in the 1950s, however, many Christians didn’t believe in applying reason and evidence to support the Gospel and its message of personal transformation through repentance and faith in Jesus. So, two of the major questions Geisler dealt with in his studies were, What is the role of reason and What is the role of faith in knowing God?
One of the interesting things Geisler realized when he started reading and studying, though, was that God had blessed him with a nearly photographic memory. Another thing he realized was that, if he was going to be able to answer people’s questions about and objections to Christian faith, he needed to study philosophy, not just the Bible.
“Philosophy gives the context of the evidential,” says Josh McDowell, a long-time Christian apologist who studied under Dr. Geisler. “You don’t have to give up your reason to become a Christian,” an older Geisler notes in a recent video. “If you want to know the mind of God,” he adds in another, older video, “you must learn to use your own.” He concludes, “We take a step of faith in the light, but we don’t take a leap of faith in the dark.”
It took Geisler 20 years to finish his college degrees, including his PhD, until age 39. He then decided he was ready to witness to other people about Jesus and the Bible.
After writing A GENERAL INTRODUCTION TO THE BIBLE with William Nix, Geisler’s first big accomplishment in his ministry was being one of the leaders of 300 Evangelical Christian leaders behind the 1979 Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, which was founded by Dr. Ted Baehr’s close friend Jay Grimstead. “The foundation of everything [Christians] believe is the Bible,” Geisler says, “and if that’s true, the Bible has to be inerrant or the whole foundation of our faith crumbles. If you can’t trust the Bible on trivial matters, you can’t trust the Bible on essential matters either.” He concludes in another video, “If you disbelieve in inerrancy, then you reject the authority of Jesus Christ.” He adds that the Bible has more documentary evidence and more eyewitness testimony than any other ancient document in the world. If you can’t trust the Bible, you can’t trust human knowledge about the ancient world either, an idea that all the best scholars of the ancient world wholeheartedly would reject. The Bible has “more archeological confirmation than any other book from the ancient world,” Geisler asserts. The Chicago Statements on Biblical Inerrancy and Biblical Interpretation or Hermeneutics became a “creedal platform” for the whole church. McDowell adds that more seminaries and churches teach biblical inerrancy today because of Grimstead’s and then Geisler’s work in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
The rest of the documentary shows that Dr. Geisler not only worked on explaining biblical inerrancy to people. Often working with other writers, he also developed important early texts and articles in the 1980s on Christian Ethics, Philosophy of Religion, Christian Apologetics, The Problem of Evil, as well as books and articles on specific cultural issues, such as the pantheistic worldview of STAR WARS, abortion, origin science, capital punishment, birth con, and homosexuality. He was a bulldog for Truth with a capital T, the movie says.
The movie’s final third shows how Geisler trained future Christian leaders for 50 years. He clearly ignited a flame in many Christian leaders and authors. People grew up in the Christian faith devouring his books and absorbing his lectures.
Accompanying the movie’s presentation of Norman Geisler’s life and teaching, the movie follows the story of a preacher’s daughter who lost her faith then found it again by interacting with Norman Geisler’s teachings and ministry. In 1992, he and Ross Rhoads started the Southern Evangelical Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina.
NORM GEISLER: NOT QUALIFIED is an incredibly informative, inspiring documentary with many great insights and truths about knowledge, wisdom, Jesus, Christianity, the Gospel, and the Bible. The God of the Bible is an orderly God, Norm Geisler says, and He has a plan for your life that will fulfill your best desires. “Truth can be known,” Geisler says in the movie. “Truth corresponds to reality. What is true is true for everyone.” Geisler “didn’t just give reasons for the Bible,” Christian author Frank Turek says. “He gave reasons for Reality.”
One of the most startling assertions by Dr. Geisler is his comment in the movie, “This is not the best possible world, but it’s the best way to get to the best of all possible worlds.” Later in the movie, during a discussion about the suicide of one of his daughters, he says, “Nobody is without tragedy in their life. [The Bible] tells us that [God is] all good. He’s all powerful. If He’s all good, He has a purpose for everything that happens. If he’s all powerful, He can bring a good out of evil, and He’s all knowing, so He knows where this thing is going. God can see you through the deepest valley into the valley of the shadow of death. The worst possible thing can happen to you, and God’s grace is sufficient. It really is. Only one life will soon be past, and only what’s done for Christ will last. This world is not the whole story.”
After being inspired by Jay Grimstead’s 1979 Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, Dr. Geisler had many important things to teach people about God, the Bible and philosophy, which is the love of wisdom. In addition to his strong defense of the Bible, some of his best answers included such things as his solution to the so-called “problem of evil,” his defense of the validity of using reason and logic to discover God’s Truth, his philosophical and biblical discussions of ethics, and his commitment to preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ while giving answers to every person for the hope in Jesus that lies within us. You don’t have to believe in every little thing he wrote or said to admire him as one of the great modern defenders of the Faith. In the end, Norm Geisler was qualified by God. If Geisler’s ministry and teachings had any worth whatsoever, it was totally because of God.
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