I recently had the opportunity to be a part of my church’s (Ninth and O Baptist Church) Sunday night series titled “Can I Ask That?” where we address tough questions about Christianity. For example, past sermons include “Can I Trust the Bible?”, “Why is Hell Forever?”, and “Did God Call the Israelites to Commit Genocide with the Invasion of the Land?” I addressed the question “Does God Exist?”.
This question is quite complex, such that a 40-minute Q&A session only touches the tip of the iceberg. However, the way the moderator (Drew Smith) structured the forum, I believe we were able to touch on some important issues that many face when addressing the question of God’s existence.The link to the audio of the session takes you to NAOBC’s website where you can listen via streaming or you can download the audio file. To help provide some guidance as to the flow, I addressed the following questions:
- Context: The first three question address the context surrounding the question “Does God exist?” I address how this question became a challenge to Christianity, how we know God exists, and how we know the true God is the God revealed in the Bible.
- Objections: This was the bulk of the Q&A session as we addressed
- pluralism (is Christianity arrogant to claim that it alone is right regarding God?)
- scientism (hasn’t science shown us that the idea of God is irrelevant?)
- incoherence (isn’t doctrines like the Trinity incoherent?)
- parallels with other religions (how do we know that Christianity isn’t just ancient mythology just re-packaged?)
- evidence (why isn’t there more evidence if God does exist?)
- Resources: I closed by providing some helpful resources for those wanting to learn more about apologetics.
Two things that I personally would like for the listener to take away from this talk are:
- Apologetics is not a one-time event. Most apologetical encounters occur over time in the context of a relationship (co-worker, friend, family, etc.). As such, the believer ought not to see apologetics has having ready-made arguments on hand to use in a pre-defined manner. Rather, apologetics involves the art of listening and asking questions such that the believer addresses the questions and challenges of the unbeliever.
- Apologetics is not just for the learned and intellectual. Rather, all believers are equipped to give an answer for their faith in Christ. Jesus promises the disciples that the Holy Spirit will give them the words they need when they stand before magistrates and religious leaders. This is true for us as well. Further, John 9 is an encouragement that a seminary degree is not necessary for one to answer challenges against Christianity.
Though we have a wealth of apologetics resources today, it can often feel like apologetics is best left to those trained in the finer details of the various arguments for Christianity. It is my hope that after listening to this session, you walk away encouraged that all believers are equipped to give an answer for their faith in Christ.