Argue Without Being Argumentative

arguing-evangelism1

by Mikel

Who likes to argue? Depends what you mean. Unfortunately, apologists use words which could give people the wrong impression: “Apologetics” sounds like apologizing. “Defense” sounds like training for hand-to-hand combat. And “argue” sounds like the thing you hate doing with your family on the way to church!

Clarifying key terms can help you overcome a few challenges associated with offering apologetics training to your group. Here’s how. First, let’s turn to the Random House Dictionary:

ar·gue (ahr-gue). verb.

         1.       To present reasons for or against a thing. 
He argued in favor of capital punishment.
           2.       To contend in oral disagreement.
The Senator argued with the President about the new tax bill.

         3.       To state the reasons for or against. 
The lawyers argued the case.

I include this definition in my handouts. It’s important to explain early on that when apologists say “argue,” we don’t mean getting into shouting matches. After all, Paul said we shouldn’t be jerks who go around looking for a fight…

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