Apologetics Sermon Illustration #58: Man breaks into home with signs “beware of dog” and unbelief



Point: Presuppositional apologetics as founded by Cornelius Van Til make the point that the evidence for Christianity is plentiful but the reason for the unbelief is because of man’s sinfulness that suppress the truth in unrighteousness.  Sometimes people would object to the apologist and say that that is not true.  As a Christian apologist we say that the reality is there’s times when people can have so much evidence before them and still don’t live it out though the signs of its truth is all around them.  Can we think of an example outside the area of apologetics’ discussion where people chose not to believe the truth even though its obvious all around them but they chose instead to go ahead to live their life a certain way?

Picture: Here is a news story that illustrate the point of Presuppositional apologetics:

MASON COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – A man from Point Pleasant is facing charges after going past several “beware of dog” signs and allegedly breaking into a Mason County Sheriff’s deputy’s home Thursday night.

“(There is) a ‘no trespassing’ sign directly on the gate that he had to open (to get on the property) and there’s also a ‘dog on premise’ sign on the same gate right beside of the ‘no trespassing’ sign,” said Mason County Deputy Jeremy Ferrell, who owns the home.

Aside from those two signs, Deputy Ferrell also has other signs like: “beware of dog” posted on his property along with his K-9 police cruiser that sits beside of his home.

“My cruiser is out beside the house, I have dog signs everywhere, I have two German shepherd statues in front of the house, so it’s obvious there’s big dogs that live here.”

Point Pleasant Police said the suspect is James Will III, who they say is a familiar face to law enforcement.

Deputy Ferrell said after Will came through his back gate, he entered into his basement while the family was home. Ferrell said he heard a noise and went downstairs to check it out.

“I came downstairs, looked to the left (and) saw some person I never seen before in my life, in my basement.”

Deputy Ferrell said at that point, he and Will got into a small fight. It was during that struggle that his current K-9 with the Mason County Sheriff’s Office, a retired K-9 and other German shepherd bit the suspect.


I thought this story is crazy.  This home intruder obviously wanted to break into this guy’s house despite all the signs that was available that he shouldn’t do it; what are the reasons and signs?

  1. A ‘no trespassing’ sign directly on the gate that he had to open.
  2. A ‘Dog on premise’ sign on the same gate right beside of the ‘no trespassing’ sign.”
  3. Other signs about dogs.
  4. A police cruiser that sits beside the home.
  5. Also the police cruiser is marked with “K-9.”
  6. Two German shepherd statues in front of the house

Of course the person breaking in can’t say “I didn’t know.”  The responsibility was his not to commit this crime and second he should be observant.

That’s like the atheist saying there’s no proof there’s a God but goes around God’s world.


OPPONENT: I still don’t see clues and proofs for Christianity.

CHRISTIAN: I think the ability to make induction, deduction, the existence of the mind, the laws of logic and morality can only be possible because of the Christian worldview. (See lectures available here)

OPPONENT: But if these signs and proofs exists then why do some people still don’t believe and live their life like there’s no God?

CHRISTIAN: Really?  People don’t always act out rationally even though the signs are all there.  Let me share this news story.  <INSERT ILLUSTRATION>.  Do you think it was rational of the thief to assume there is the existence of no dog?


CHRISTIAN: Likewise something similar is going on when Romans 1:18 and following teaches people suppress the truth of God!



23 Responses

  1. This is a well illustrated point for sure. I can only think the burglar was a “sandwich short of a picnic!” What comes to mind for me is Romans 1:18-32, which does primarily talk of immorality but highlights the fact that some folk can’t be taught. Despite the best and most obvious proof their depraved mind cannot understand the logical truth. Great post brither, God bless you.

  2. This is really great! Love this real story analogy.

    Blessings for a stunning day in paradise.

  3. GOD elects and there are those whose existence in this world are just meant to have hardened hearts. It bleeds us to see it, Jim but I guess we should be thankful that GOD reveals Himself and His grace to us and our respective family. Counting His blessing and salvation for us. The intruder must be a thrill seeker, masochist, or has a vow to do that like to reach the unreachable star with bragging rights. 😉 Blessings to you, your family, and ministry this Sunday!

    • Yeah that intruder must be one of those things you mentioned! It seems the evidence is staring straight at his face that the house is dangerous to break into especially with the police car and signs of dogs. I read this and thought why would anyone offend the owner and occupant by breaking in?? Yet everyday Romans 1 is true people know God and knowingly violate His laws in rebellion. The fact we are saved is by His grace amen? We can’t be proud for we are also wicked and irrational left without the work of Christ, the Father and the Son! I’m curious given your good theology did you use to go to a Calvinistic church or did you learn online yourself? Or both?

      • Actually, mostly online (MacArthur, Lutzer, Stanley, Swindoll, though

      • Amen! I must have pressed the send botton prematurely. Mostly online (MacArthur, Lutzer, Stanley, Swindoll, Kroll, Sala, and recently GotQuestions and Piper) though I learned GOD’s grace and JESUS CHRIST’s redeemtive work in both GCF (Baptist/Dallas TS) and UCM. This is a work of the HOLY SPIRIT as it takes time for new and recurring information to trickle down to the heart and manifested in behavior. Grateful to GOD for His revelation through His Word and through the preachers He uses. Reading the Bible paved the way for understanding.

  4. Excellent example, Jimmy! Love this! Praying for your sermon prep!!!

    • Thank you for your prayers Mandy! Wow glad to hear your Skype meeting went well! Wow you really do have the gift of encouragement. What time do you normally have the meeting, in terms of Eastern Standard Time?

  5. Thanks for the great analogy and example of how to use it in conversation with an atheist/agnostic! We all want to judge that intruder for being a super dummy, but I think I’ve done even dummer things! (like my long, dumb prodigal “season”).

    • You are right we are all like that thief and in light of Romans 1 we even transgress the boundaries of Someone who has given us more clues that He is, and He is not to be transgressed against! I’m glad God has saved you from your sins, your prodigal days and self-righteousnesses, things that also describe my history and sins! Going to be busy day with church teaching in 40 minutes and a church movie night, I need to squeeze in sermon prep study, pray for that for me if you can yeah?

  6. Don’t tell me – the intruder tried to sue over the dog bite?

    • I won’t be surprised someone would do that in 2020! LOL. But that didn’t happen…yet. I think I heard someone breaking into a house sue the homeowner a few years ago…did you hear of something like that before too, odd news as it might be? Isn’t the world upside down?

      • I hear that kind of thing all the time. Yes, we seem to be missing our sense of logic.(As the Professor in the Narnia books would say, “I wonder what they do teach them in those schools?” 😉 )

  7. on October 26, 2020 at 10:02 am | Reply Gabriela Gomis

    This guy has a serious problem of seeing the “evidences.” More like he chose not to. Good illustration of the unbeliever.

  8. […] 4.) Apologetics Sermon Illustration #58: Man breaks into home with signs “beware of dog” and unbeli… […]

  9. on November 18, 2020 at 10:27 am | Reply Ronald the Knight Heart

    Man this guy had all the evidences that demand a verdict of the presence of dogs.

  10. on January 24, 2021 at 10:48 am | Reply Nakashima Kikugoro

    This attitude is like the atheist I know who keeps saying they don’t see the signs of God all around them

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