Interview with Christian apologist J.W. Wartick
By Mike Robinson
Christian apologist J.W. Wartick publishes the blog “Always have a Reason” that focuses on apologetic and philosophical issues. He attends Biola University and is working towards a Master’s Degree in Christian Apologetics. Additionally he is student member of the Evangelical Philosophical Society and the Evangelical Theological Society.
Information on his ministry and outreach are posted below the interview.
J.W., greetings and welcome to our site! What part of the country were you raised and where do you now call home?
I grew up in rural Indiana, and I now live in the Twin Cities area in Minnesota.
You are a son of a preacher—what was that like? What were your expectations as you were growing up?
I think there’s this general notion that pastor’s kids are supposed to have tough childhoods or higher expectations. Some of that may be true, but I never felt as though I was being watched. I was in a loving household where commitment to God was primary. I’m so blessed to have been so deeply influenced by my childhood and the fact that I was raised with a trust in God.
Besides the Bible, what are a few of your favorite books and why?
I admit that this question is always very hard for me to answer. There are just so many fantastic books out there. I’ll just pick a few and hope that people realize there are plenty more where that came from. Reasonable Faith by William Lane Craig is definitely in the mix, as it was the book that really introduced to me the rational defense of the faith. Another favorite would be The Open Secret by
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Alister McGrath. He explores the method of apologetics and how we cannot only focus on the rational aspects, but need to also integrate the arts and aesthetics into a broad apologetic approach. Finally, I cannot answer this question without listing some fiction, and the Honor Harrington series by David Weber has to be on the list because he—a Methodist lay minister—uses science fiction to explore issues of faith, all while writing hard-hitting military sci-fi.
What prompted you to pursue philosophical facets within Christian apologetics?
When I was growing up my parents always said I should be a lawyer because I loved to argue. They were right: I love to debate. Using philosophy in Christian Apologetics provides a reason to do that debate: discussions of the essentials of the Christian faith. It basically combines everything I love into one thing.
However, the reason goes more deeply than that. Looking around at evangelicalism and Christianity today I have seen an unfortunate tendency towards anti-intellectualism which I would argue comes from the Protestant reaction against the Enlightenment. Utilizing solid philosophy in order to show the truths God has revealed to us is one way to combat this anti-intellectualism in the church at large.
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