by Jim Schultz
Apologetics is the rational case for Christianity through offering arguments and/or evidence for its truth, defending it against objections, and responding to competing claims. 1 Peter 3:15 says “in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense (literally give apologetic) to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.”
As you read this passage, Peter is clear that apologetics is motivated by a character that is submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. As we regard Christ as special in our hearts, we become “prepared” to be a great apologist. I have found the opposite to be true in my life as well. As I am sharpened and more grounded in good reasons for my faith, I am willing to give more of my heart over to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
I had a fairly childish faith when I started college. I desperately wanted to follow Christ, but my desire never seemed to take root. However, my first semester at Truman State University, I was challenged in three different classes about my faith. In Psychology, I was told that anyone who wanted to pursue academics needed to check their faith at the door. In Biology, my professor talked about the “fact” of evolution and how the idea of God is ridiculous. In Sociology, I was berated with 6 weeks of atheist apologetics which left my faith in shambles. I was scared, confused, and ready to leave my faith behind…
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