As we continue some short posts in preparation for next week’s nationwide Apologetics Awareness Week (Sept 10-17), I am often told by folks who really don’t understand the goal of apologetics or the purpose of apologetics that apologetics is divisive. Many think it is about winning an argument. But this posting is going to show that apologetics has a broader purpose than winning a debate in a formal setting, or demolishing arguments or giving reason.
The goal of apologetics, in a one to one conversation should be evangelism. No way! Really? Yes. Really!
The goal of apologetics should always be in the context of evangelism in the evangelism context.
Christian conversion best defined is the radical turn away from sin, selfishness, Satan and a turn toward God and His Kingdom. Apologetics should never be introducing a dose of confusion to make the gospel less profound. And any apologetic that does not point back to the cross is a self centered apologetic.
Showing reasons, good reasons for faith is the key. Why? Because faith is more than a bare mental assent to a bunch of intellectual facts. Faith includes trusting in Christ, by entrusting oneself in an existential act of following Christ and being His disciple, and then continuing to know and worship Him with all our heart, soul and mind, so that we can love our neighbor as ourself (Matthew 22:37-40).
Apologetics aims at conversion, and not some generic spirituality or religious external expression. There are many apologetics horror stories out there, where someone enamored with apologetics, “walked away” because of something bad happening to them. That is not a good excuse to not do apologetics, or even not being engaged in apologetics. Apologetics is a spiritual discipline, a necessary spiritual discipline particularly in our post-Christian culture.
Apologetics can also show that repentance makes sense, because Christianity is TRUE, rational, and “attractive.”
If you would like to know more about the upcoming Apologetics Awareness Week, next week you can click on the event page. Perhaps your local LifeWay Christian bookstore will be participating in the workshop on Tuesday. I will be checking out our local LifeWay this morning/afternoon to find out what they are looking to do.
Also I will be mentioning the Apologetics Awareness Week on the Real Issue podcast this coming week. Look and listen for that as well.