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What (Good) is Apologetics?

January 19, 2015

Unit 2 Handout: “What (Good) is Apologetics?

1.        Questions and Answers from Last Week’s Discussions and the Readings for This Evening

2.        Quiz and Review of Quiz

3.        Chapter 1: What (Good) is Apologetics?

a.        Supermarket or Antidote?

b.        Apologetics is for Believers as Well

c.        Apologetics in the Bible

d.        Use and Abuse

e.        Tollers and Jack

f.        Conclusion

4.        Article: Edgar, “No News Is Good News,” http://tinyurl.com/om9ncam

5.        Review: Defense, Answer, Explanation (Story); Pre-Evangelism and Affirmation

6.        100 percent “Proof” versus leading the honest truth-seeker to an openness where the Gospel is shared

a.        Romans 10:17

b.        2 Corinthians 10:5

c.        Ministerial verus Magisterial Use of Reason (Martin Luther)

7.        Christian Apologetics Styles / Viewpoints

a.        Thomistic/Classical tradition

i.        Based on philosophical arguments for God’s existence, then specific case for Christian revelation claims. Deductive reasoning.

b.        Evidentialist tradition

i.        Empirical arguments about the life, miracles, death, resurrection of Christ, fulfilled prophecies

ii.       Uses probabilistic proofs (Inductive reasoning)

c.        Presuppositional tradition

i.        Belief in God and His Word is presupposed

ii.       Depends on the inspiration of the Holy Spirit

iii.      Non-theistic assumptions/worldview proven to be false

d.        Fideist tradition

i.        God-consciousness is an common experience common to most people.

ii.       Rational arguments are not necessary.

e.        Reform tradition

i.        Belief in God is “properly basic”

f.        Compare: “Natural Theology” and the primary arguments for God’s existence

i.        Cosmological argument: Beginning of the universe

ii.       Teleological (Design) argument(s): Design and order in the universe, e.g Anthropic Principle; Design of life

iii.      Moral argument: Moral law implies a moral law giver

8.        The Starting Point of Apologetic Methodologies

a.        Psalm 8; 19; 33:6 and 119:105 & 130

b.        Proverbs 1:7; 5:12; and 9:10.

9.        The Means of Apologetics

a.        Matt. 22:37 – Using reason and logic

b.        Jude 3: Battling for the truth

c.        Acts 17:2-4: Explaining and demonstrating the Gospel

d.        Acts 17:11: Searching the Scriptures and seeking truth

e.        Acts 17:17: Answering the questions of believers & skeptics alike

f.        Acts 17:23: Finding common ground

g.        2 Tim. 2:15: Imparting God’s word accurately and clearly

h.        Romans 12:2: Using our mind to reason

10.      For Next Week

a.        Reading from the Holman text: Chapter 14: Methodology

b.        Online Article: Coulter, “Introduction,” http://tinyurl.com/lbduqz3

11.      Conclusion

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