Peace & Blessings Beloved,
TGBTG for allowing us to see another day. I pray all is well with you and yours, and that your week has been fruitful & blessed thus far.
Now that we have taken the time to scrutinize the historicity & veracity of the Holy Bible, let's move on to understand how we can effectively & confidently defend our faith, and consequently the Bible.
This moves us into the study of a term called apologetics, or more specifically, Christian Apologetics.
The English word apology comes from a Greek word which basically means to give a defense. Christian Apologetics, then, is the science of giving a defense of the Christian faith. There are many skeptics who doubt the existence of God and/or attack belief in the God of the Bible. There are many critics who attack the inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible. There are many false teachers who promote false doctrines and deny the key truths of the Christian faith. The mission of Christian Apologetics is to nullify these movements and advance the Christian faith: belief in Holy Bible, and the fact that God wrapped Himself in flesh, came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ, and died for the salvation of all who will give their life to Him.
Most would agree that the cornerstone bible verse of Christian Apologetics is 1 Peter 3:13-17 (emphasis on vs. 15) "13 Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good?14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled,15 but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,16 having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.17 For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God's will, than for doing evil." There is no excuse for a Christian to be completely unable to defend his or her faith. Every Christian should be able to give a reasonable presentation of his or her faith in Christ. While it is not expected that every Christian needs to be an expert in apologetics, it is expected that every Christian should know what he believes, why he believes it, how to share it with others, and how to defend it against lies and attacks.
Sticking with 1 Peter 3:15, oftentimes a key aspect of Christian Apologetics is often ignored: the second half of the verse, which emphasizes that our defense should always be conducted with gentleness and respect. Defending the Christian faith with apologetics should never involve being rude, angry, or disrespectful. While practicing Christian Apologetics, we should strive to be strong in our defense and at the same time Christ-like in our presentation. If we win a debate but turn a person even further away from Christ by our attitude, we have lost the true purpose of Christian Apologetics.
There are two primary methods of Christian Apologetics. The first, commonly known as classical apologetics, involves sharing proofs and evidences that the Christian message is true. The second, commonly known as presuppositional apologetics, involves confronting the presuppositions (preconceived ideas, assumptions) behind anti-Christian positions. Proponents of the two methods of Christian Apologetics often debate each other as to which method is most effective. Ideally, one would do well to be adequately equipped in both methods when defending the Christian faith.
In summary, Christian Apologetics is simply presenting a reasonable defense of the Christian faith and truth to those who disagree. Christian Apologetics is a necessary aspect of the Christian life. We are all commanded to be ready and equipped to proclaim the gospel and defend our faith (Matthew 28:18-20; 1 Peter 3:15). That is the essence of Christian Apologetics.
Over the next few posts we'll further examine what it means to be an apologist, and take a deep dive into the history of apologetics, and how it has transformed from the past to modern day.
May we establish, nurture, and grow a sincere love for the word of God, and study it lovingly & faithfully.
I pray you receive this with the love intended, and apply it to wisdom.
Love you much.
Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Blessed!
P.S- If you have not given your life to Jesus Christ, I implore you to take the time to do so right now. Use John 3:16 & Romans 10:9-10 as a foundation for making your confession of faith. And use Ephesians 2:1-10 to provide proper context for your salvation.