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Today's Creation Moment

Apr
17
Who Is God?
2 Timothy 3:14-15
“But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy...
Did you know that the Bible never tries to convince the reader that there is a God? As surprising as that sounds, it’s absolutely true. The Bible’s very first words begin by identifying God – but...
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Apologetics ... God’s Way

The origin of Christian apologetics lies in the beginnings of Christianity. The Lord Jesus Christ commanded: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). And the Apostle Peter, speaking to the persecuted churches, counseled, “In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15). 
St. Paul was a master apologist. He knew his faith was defensible. He knew that spiritual warfare is often fought in the battleground of our minds. He also knew that divine power is available to “demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God” – when we “take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). If we are to obey our Lord’s command, we need to know what to say and how to respond to questions and challenges to our faith. It’s our duty.
The first condition of effective Christian apologetics is reverent love for God and the humble acknowledgement of our deep dependence on God’s power to change men’s hearts. When we proceed to “witness” on our own strength, we lose. Each response, each defense of our faith, is to be couched in love. Peter calls for an inner reverence for Christ as Lord. This means that we must know Christ and God’s Word in order to lead others to Him. Knowing what to say comes from a close relationship with Jesus and a commitment to knowing His Word. We need to be in Bible class all our life long. There’s no graduation; there’s no end to learning to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul and mind.
Knowing how to respond when challenged is vital. Most people will resist a harsh, academic response, which makes us sound rude and defensive. But when we respond “with gentleness and respect,” we are more likely to be heard. Apologetics is more about honoring God than winning an argument. Biblical apologetics must somehow always link back to Christ and acknowledge Him as Creator and Lord [Colossians 1:16-18]. A reasoned defense is directly connected to the hope we have as followers of Christ. 
Connecting our intellectual arguments to Christ takes special effort. Paul knew the need to “take captive every thought” and turn them over to Christ. Before we witness,
should we not pray, “Lord Jesus, I need Your help with this, and I submit my thoughts to You”? Do we have the prayer discipline we need for effective witness?
Today's guest blogger is Richard Rothermel, a long-time friend of Creation Moments and an avid creationist who teaches biblical creation to the members of his church through a column in the church's newsletter.  

The origin of Christian apologetics lies in the beginnings of Christianity. The Lord Jesus Christ commanded: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). And the Apostle Peter, speaking to the persecuted churches, counseled, “In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15). 

St. Paul was a master apologist. He knew his faith was defensible. He knew that spiritual warfare is often fought in the battleground of our minds. He also knew that divine power is available to “demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God” – when we “take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). If we are to obey our Lord’s command, we need to know what to say and how to respond to questions and challenges to our faith. It’s our duty.

The first condition of effective Christian apologetics is reverent love for God and the humble acknowledgement of our deep dependence on God’s power to change men’s hearts. When we proceed to “witness” on our own strength, we lose. Each response, each defense of our faith, is to be couched in love. Peter calls for an inner reverence for Christ as Lord. This means that we must know Christ and God’s Word in order to lead others to Him. Knowing what to say comes from a close relationship with Jesus and a commitment to knowing His Word. We need to be in Bible class all our life long. There’s no graduation; there’s no end to learning to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul and mind.

Knowing how to respond when challenged is vital. Most people will resist a harsh, academic response, which makes us sound rude and defensive. But when we respond “with gentleness and respect,” we are more likely to be heard. Apologetics is more about honoring God than winning an argument. Biblical apologetics must somehow always link back to Christ and acknowledge Him as Creator and Lord [Colossians 1:16-18]. A reasoned defense is directly connected to the hope we have as followers of Christ. 

Connecting our intellectual arguments to Christ takes special effort. Paul knew the need to “take captive every thought” and turn them over to Christ. Before we witness, should we not pray, “Lord Jesus, I need Your help with this, and I submit my thoughts to You”? Do we have the prayer discipline we need for effective witness?

Today's guest blogger is Richard Rothermel, a long-time friend of Creation Moments and an avid creationist who teaches biblical creation to the members of his church through a column in the church's newsletter.  

Comments

Yes, we must proclaim creation and seek guidance on how it is to be done. I would like to share with you what me and my family experienced one morning- on Dec. 25, 2002. On this morning that we celebrate the birth of Christ, I was thinking: "Show us some sign that you see all this." Well, lo and behold, as we sat on the sofa there, through the living room window we saw two beautiful JEWEL HUMMINGBIRDS hovering at my hanging flower pot and wow, what a moment, what a moment. YES, THERE IS A HIGHER POWER! YES, THERE IS A DIVINE KING.

Good post. Methods of apologetics can be a hotly debated issue but I think we can all agree that if it doesn't connect with Christ and ultimately glorify the Lord it's kind of missing the point. IMO, the method known as Presuppositional Apologetics does this the best. For anyone interested in this method there are many books on the subject but one book that is short and an easy introduction to the method is, "Every Thought Captive: A Study Manual for the Defense of Christian Truth" by Richard Pratt available for less than ten bucks. I have no connection to the author or the book but just think it's a great place to start when it comes to a God honoring apologetic.