A Christian reader writes:
One of your last lines in the latest reply to Sam Harris is:
"But in these matters of ultimate meaning, being persuasive is not as important as being right, is it?"
I agree. But as a Christian I also know that I am not always right, so being right is less important than being forgiven. And, after all, being persuasive is a good thing, too, but in these matters it is perhaps mostly unachievable. Christ himself sent missionaries out to preach his Gospel. Their job was to bear witness of what they had seen and heard, and to teach what Jesus taught, but their words did far less to convert than did the Spirit.
A good missionary doesn't say, "So let me show you why you're wrong," or even "Let me show you why I'm right." The best missionaries say, "This is what I experienced" or even "This is what I saw" (with care taken never to bear false witness). You have been, especially in your last two messages to Sam, a good missionary.
Let me put it another way. If you had been alive during the ministry of Paul, and you heard him speak about his experience on the road to Damascus, would you have believed him? Almost certainly not. What you would have believed would have been what was happening inside yourself. The Gospel is logical and makes sense, but conversion is spiritual and happens within us. You might have said, "Well, his story is incredible, yet I felt something inside that told me it was true." Sam has helped put you in touch with that experience, so although he did not wish it he has acted as a missionary, too.