From High School to College to Apologist
by Ratio Christi guest blogger Luke Nix
As our young people graduate high school, enter college, navigate through the academy, and eventually end up in the real world, they will face many challenges to what they believe. I have seen too many young people who considered themselves Christians, who then lost their faith when they got into the world. Most of them cite that a college professor was able to show that the Bible is not reliable regarding reality or to convince them that Christ is not the only way to God or to reason them away from a belief in God altogether.
Throughout the school-age years and into college, our young people are constantly bombarded with the idea that science is superior to any religious belief in its grip on reality. They are taught that naturalistic Evolution is the only possible conclusion from the data; from that they conclude that God does not exist. Of course, the scientific debate is not the only challenge that our young people face in the academy. They will be confronted by other world religions, the cults, and other philosophies. In the humanities, they will be guided to believe that there are no absolutes (truth or morality). They are given evidence by the academy for many positions that are contrary to Christianity; therefore, Christians must do the same. When we provide our young people with proper understanding of their beliefs and sound arguments to weigh against the claims of the opposition, they are less likely to blindly accept the conclusions of the opposition. That will place them on firmer ground and prepare them as ambassadors for the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a polarized(ing) world so deeply in need.
Having said that, we also need to cultivate a love for Christ in our children that burns until they are consumed with it. Christ told us "If you love me, you will obey what I command." (John 14:15) This was not a statement of how to prove to Christ that you "love" him, it was a statement of how the world will be able to identify Christ’s love in us (see also John 15) and see that we are acting on what Christ taught. Christ summed up all His commands with this simple phrase, "Love the LORD your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and love your neighbor as yourself" (Luke 10:27, Italics mine). Providing reasoned defense for our faith to others is part of loving God with our mind and loving our neighbor enough to help him overcome his doubt, so that he can enjoy the gift that Christ has given to us of the freedom from the separation from God.
Christianity is different from every other religion, not just because it is true, but because it can provide the Believer with spiritual, emotional, and intellectual fulfillment. If we allow God to work through us to show our young people how fulfilling knowing the One True God can be, there is no end to how God can and will use them to reach this dying world. Jesus made the most radical claim in history: "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no man comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6) Defending the truth of this claim is the most important and challenging task Christians face today.
Our young people have the opportunity to be the most powerful ambassadors for Christ in the academy. That is why I am thankful for Ratio Christi. They are going directly where our young people need them most: the college campus. They are bringing not just the truth of Christ to the students, but equipping them with rational reasons to believe that it is true and present it to those who challenge and are honestly seeking the truth. Each chapter provides the students on that campus with the means they need to be incredible ambassadors for Christ. Our college students need an environment of spiritual, emotional, and intellectual support to keep the Body of Christ strong and able to carry out the Great Commission in the academy. The call has gone out for apologists to be raised up in college, and Ratio Christi is answering that call.
Luke Nix is the founder of Faithful Thinkers. He suffered a crisis of faith several years ago in his life, but came back to Christianity by the grace of God working through apologists. Today he defends the truth of Christianity through reason and scientific evidences on his blog. Check out the "Must-Read" articles to see how he approaches the issues of worldview and truth.