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What is Christian Apologetics? Pt 1
by Coralie Rose
I’m passionate about Christian Apologetics. This is partially because it was a catalyst for my already-Christian world being turned upside down in an amazing way about four years ago, and partially because I believe in what it stands for- giving a thoughtful account, or reasons, for the hope that we have as Christians. In light of a conference that will be happening at my church next weekend on this subject (follow the link at the end of this blog for more info on that), I’m re-posting a blog I posted a few weeks ago on the subject, but in two parts this time. I haven’t yet learned the art of short article writing.
Interestingly, as I’ve gotten more and more into apologetics over the years, the reactions to it from some fellow Christians towards it have been disappointing and even unsettling. (Sidenote: Christian Apologetics isn’t actually just for Christians at all but also for theists, atheists, agnostics and whatever other -ist you may consider yourself. So feel free to read on, whatever your beliefs, but this particular blog is written for a Christian audience). I’m a little surprised at how many Christians don’t know what apologetics is, but I’m even more surprised at how easily others dismiss it or
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even denounce it. All of these reactions are surprising to me for two main reasons- apologetics is important and it’s Biblical. Before I delve further into that though, I’ll address the most basic question first…
What is “apologetics”?
NO, it doesn’t mean to “apologize” for something. Actually, the opposite is true. The word itself comes from the Greek work “apologia” meaning to give an answer or defence for something- in this case a defense of Christian claims to truth. The word comes from the judicial processes that go on in a courtroom, so let’s analyze that scene for a moment: Defense attorneys come prepared with all the evidence they can gather. They have both direct and circumstantial evidence, and eyewitness accounts, and from this they make their case. The attorney researches, studies, memorizes and then expounds their evidence to the courtroom. They build a reasoned and rational case for what they’re claiming is true. Christian apologists do the same thing, only they use the Bible as historical document as much as a holy book, and evidence from other disciplines as well like the sciences (yes, the sciences), philosophy, archaeology and more…
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