"But in your hearts revere 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
Word of the day: Apologetics - giving a defense
As Christians, we are told to be able to give answers for why we believe what we believe. That is a serious charge. Why? Well, because for one it's in the Bible. <= That brings us to some of the most common questions asked of Christians: Why do you believe the Bible? Why do you believe it is the inspired Word of God? How can you be sure it is accurate after all these years of translating?
If we actually stop and ask ourselves these questions, are we able to answer them? Even more importantly, are we able to answer them well? Let's think about why Peter would say what he said. There is a hint in the last part of 1 Peter 3:15: "But do this with gentleness and respect." Peter wants us to be a light (1 Peter 2:11-12) in the dark. Having a reasonable answer for what we believe may be all it takes for someone to believe!
I guarantee you, if you are doing your job (preaching to the lost and the unsaved) you will need to be able to answer these. If you haven't had to answer them, take a look at what else you could be doing to spread the Truth.
Peter speaks as if he is assuming we will need to be able to "give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have." We should have these coming up in conversation daily.
So be ready! I challenge all those who call themselves Christians to find an answer to these common questions. Scripture demands it...so DO IT!!! (Acts 5:29)
Here are just a few to get you started:
- How can you say that Christianity is true and all other religions are false?
- How can the Bible be accurate after so many translations?
- Why do you believe that Jesus raised from the dead?
- Science and religion are not compatible!
- Why is there evil in the world? (rape, child abuse, genocide) How could a loving God allow it?
Post your answer to one of the above questions, or another one you thought of/were asked recently! I'll answer some in upcoming posts.
Another reason we should be prepared to answer these and other questions about our faith is to teach, train, and equip fellow believers. We all go through 'long, dark, tea-times of the soul' and have doubts. Getting our questions answered in such a time is sometimes all it takes to strengthen our faith. So do your fellow brother and sister in Christ a favor and make like a Boy Scout and "Always Be Prepared"!
**Just a tip: don't use the 'burning in the bosom' argument that LDS use, it's a very weak argument and can be turned on you very easily.
If you need a jump start in the right direction, check out Stand to Reason. This is probably the best site I've found for apologetics resources. Also, the STR Android App has finally arrived! They also have an iPhone app (both are free) so check them out!