Definition of Apologetics (Week 1)
September 4th 2016
Definition of Apologetics
“The defense of the Christian faith”
The word “apologetics” comes from the Greek word apologia, which was originally used to refer to a speech of defense or an answer given in reply. In ancient Athens it referred to a defense made in the courtroom as part of the normal judicial procedure. After the accusation, the defendant was allowed to refute the charges with an “apologia”. The accused would attempt to “speak away” (apo—away, logia—speech) the accusation.
“To ‘speak away’ an objection to Christianity”
Scriptures Concerning Apologetics
1 Peter 3:15: In your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.
Colossians 4:5-6: Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person
Acts 6:9-10: Then some of those who belonged to the synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called), and of the Cyrenians, and of the Alexandrians, and of those from Cilicia and Asia, rose up and disputed with Stephen. But they could not withstand the wisdom and the Spirit with which he was speaking.
I encourage you to also read the entire passage surrounding the above verses. Other verses related to apologetics include: Acts 18:4, Titus 1:9, Acts 18:28, Acts 17:22-31, Acts 19:8-10, Proverbs 15:23.
Importance of Apologetics
The Christian faith and the Bible are under an all-out attack from atheists, skeptics, critics, cultists, and other religions. It is important that those people and those listening to them can hear a reasonable defense. Especially important for:
Students: Christianity is constantly undermined by so-called “experts”.
Parents and Grandparents: Young Americans are leaving Christianity at a rate of about six times the historic rate because they do not know why they “believe”.
Ten Basic Questions
- How do we know the Bible is God’s Word?
- How can we know that the Bible we have today is a reliable record of the original writings?
- How do we know God exists?
- How many Gods are there?
- Why would a good God allow evil to exist?
- Why would a good God allow suffering to exist?
- Do all religions ultimately point to the same God?
- Did a man called Jesus actually exist?
- How do we know the historical Jesus is God?
- What is a Christian worldview?