Apologetics for the mind

Edited from an email I sent

It is undeniable that Christianity has made a tremendous intellectual impact during its two thousand-year history. As Christians throughout that time have tried to be faithful to both Matthew 28:16-20 and 1 Peter 3:15, they have engaged worldviews left, right and centre.

However, in recent decades, that apologetic mandate has been compromised or even denied. We can find many reasons for this (the advent of postmodernity, the flourishing of science, educational apathy, fideism, intellectual laziness etc) but we’d rather spend our energy reclaiming the rightful place biblical truth holds in the intellectual domain.

One aim of Christian apologetics is to demonstrate that the Christian worldview has intellectually valid and even superior explanatory power (notice the word “superior”. Every worldview offers explanations). In human words, it claims that the Bible holds all the real answers about the human condition, morality, the purpose of existence and other big questions we’re too busy to think about until it’s too late.

With all that, I’d like to recommend to you an entire free course in Apologetics by Philosophy Professor Douglas Groothuis. The course includes both lectures (MP3) and also lecture notes (HTML – can open with your browser or word processor). I liked how much time Groothuis devotes in putting apologetics into a biblical context, as well as occasionally sharing personal experiences from his own ministry. It’s material that goes both wide and narrow and even if you disagree with something, you will find it very helpful.

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