Playground Apologetics Tactics Question 2: “How did you arrive at that conclusion?”

by Hillary Short

Welcome back, Mama Bears!  We are enjoying sharing this series with you.  Currently we are moving through Greg Koukl’s three questions for guiding apologetics conversations.  They are:

1:  “What do you mean by that?”

2:  “How did you arrive at that conclusion?”

3:   Using Columbo to Lead the Way

In our last installment we discussed Tactics Question 1: “What do you mean by that?”  Now let’s turn to the second question: “How did you arrive at that conclusion?”

Koukl uses this tactical question to place the burden of proof on the person making the claim. When we say “burden of proof,” we mean that the person who makes a claim has the responsibility for explaining the reasons behind why they believe their claim is true. Often, we jump too quickly into defending our own view that we miss the fact that someone else has just made a claim statement which must be defended. We as Christians bear the responsibility of having “reasons for the hope that is within us.” (1 Peter 3:15) We shoulder the burden of proof for why we have arrived at the conclusion that the Christian worldview is true. It is reasonable to expect others to shoulder the same burden of proof if they hold to an alternate worldview.

The question “How did you arrive at that conclusion,” encourages discussion because it keeps the ball in the claimer’s court, requiring him or her to provide the reasons which support their view.  I find a slightly similar wording works just as well, and I used it in a recent park bench conversation…


Playground Apologetics Tactics Question 2: “How did you arrive at that conclusion?” | Mama Bear Apologetics