Category: Evangelism

Are You Speaking the Same Language?

To quote the old adage, “it’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it.” This is especially critical when communicating with someone who does not share your views. In that case, an analogy of translating between different languages is apropos.

When I was in high school, I once had the opportunity to go on a mission trip to the Philippines. While there, I and others preached and taught the Bible at several small churches, many of them in Manila and the surrounding area. While many Filipinos understand English, we used a translator while preaching to help our message come through. Even having the translator doesn’t completely remove dangerous pitfalls.

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Would-be and Wouldn’t-be Apologists

What do one million dollars look like? Well, that depends.

If you want to see a million dollars in $100 bills, I am afraid it is not all that impressive, fitting into an oversized briefcase. If you wanted to see a million in $20 bills, it is a bit less underwhelming. At least it would be something that could qualify as an actual pile of money.

However, if you wanted to see a million dollars in $1 bills, now that actually looks like a lot of money. At Chicago’s Federal Reserve Bank Money Museum, a rotating “cube of cash” is on display (click link to view photo). One million $1 bills fill a 64 cubit foot case and weights over a ton. As a single stack, it would reach nearly four hundred feet in height.

What does Christian apologetics look like? Well, that depends.

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The Christian Apologetics Mandate

The Greek word apologia (Greek: ἀπολογία) is the root for the English term “apologetics.” Apologia and its root forms are found in the New Testament (Acts 26:2; Romans 1:20; Philippians 1:7, 16), with 1 Peter 3:15 revealing the mandate imploring Christians to be ready to explain and defend their faith. Throughout Christian history, apologetics became known as the enterprise by which apologists sought to give a reasoned defense of the truth of Christianity. Today, Christian apologetics involves the use of various disciplines to defend the faith, including the biblical, doctrinal, philosophical, historical, literary, and scientific fields.

In more technical terms, apologetics is a branch of Christian theology that seeks to provide rational justification for the truth claims of Christianity.

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Can Certain Apologetics Hurt Christianity More Than Help It?

Most of you can probably tell someone what you believe. However, Peter reminds us that we need to also defend our beliefs: “always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you” (1 Pet 3:15, NASB).

In other words, Peter was promoting Christian apologetics.

So what is apologetics? Simply put, it is making a reasoned argument for something (from the Greek, apologia; translated “defense” in 1 Peter 3:15).

Apologetics can be a very powerful tool in our arsenal. It can help strengthen our own faith. In those times when we start to doubt our beliefs, sometimes all we need is a reminder why that belief is true.

Apologetics is also a tremendous tool in evangelism. When talking to a skeptic, it can be difficult…

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‘I Don’t Need Apologetics, I Evangelize With the Gospels!’ Are You Sure About That?

I don’t need to know apologetics, I evangelize with the Gospels. That is a common answer I get from Christians when I ask their opinion on using apologetics to reach unbelievers. As Christians we will be faced with an evangelism opportunity at multiple times in our lives. Therefore, it’s vital to know the gospel first and foremost, but it’s also important to reflect on why we are Christians so we are prepared in answering an unbeliever. What I’m about to say is probably not going to be your average Christian’s response. While my intent is not to tear down Christians who say this, I feel there are things that must be said to show the direct relationship between apologetics and evangelism.

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