What Does the Bible Say About Apologetics?

by Thomas Earl Davis

Some times when I tell other Christians that I am an apologist they do not know what I am talking about. They think I am apologizing for being a Christian. They may even claim that apologetics is not in the Bible. In this series of blog posts I wanted to take a look at what the Bible teaches concerning apologetics. Some of the verses I will look at will be familiar to people. Hopefully some of the verses that I look at will be new. Since every apologist knows 1 Peter 3:16 it seems that it is a good place to start

Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil. (1 Peter 3:13-17 ESV)

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The context of the passage is suffering. Peter first asks what seems to be a rhetorical question. Who hurts people for doing good? Peter then states that if you do suffer for righteousness God will bless you. Apparently some people will hurt others for doing good. Peter ends this passage by stating that suffering for good is better than suffering for evil. In the first century the Jews persecuted the Christians because the Christians allowed gentiles to be considered equals to Jews. The Christians also claimed that following the Mosaic Law was no longer necessary because Jesus had fulfilled the Law. The Romans accused the Christians of being atheists because they would not take part in the local religious customs. They were accused of being disloyal to Rome because they would not confess that Caesar was lord. Throughout history Christians have faced various kinds of persecution and slander. An apologist should expect that there will always be resistance to the message of the Gospel.

The apologist must always make her arguments and conduct herself in a way that honors Christ as Lord. This should be the central theme of every Christian’s life, whether they are making apologetic arguments, repairing cars, or planting flowers…

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