His post is boldly entitled “Walking Around with our Pants Around our Ankles”.
A little bit about Rich: his background is in teaching and his most recent post was in a school in a very rough part of Los Angeles.
Rich makes an important point about the need to find people who disagree with you and engage them. You won’t find them in your house or in your church. You’ve got to go to the workplace or the university campus and start making friends with them to find out what they believe and whether they are open to new ideas!
Rich reacts to my post from yesterday here:
…Another thing is that when people are caught in an environment where they have to defend God’s honor, they suddenly become starved for the kind of training Wintery advocates. If you regularly find yourself amidst a bunch of atheists, agnostics, and Muslims who are constantly challenging you on the reasonableness of your faith, chances are, you’ll start searching for answers pretty quickly. Hey, it happened to me. In other words, if your pants fall down, buying a belt suddenly moves up a few notches on your priority list.
The kicker is that many people never experience that felt need; they are sequestered in an environment of comfort. A decent number go to great lengths to maintain this bubble, avoiding being exposed. They are walking around in closeted quarters, with the shutters drawn and drapes pulled down, oblivious to the fact that their trousers are hanging around their ankles.
Many people assume apologetics is all about merely “winning an argument,” but nothing could be further from the truth. WK puts it in the proper perspective: it’s about defending God’s honor in public. If someone were clowning on your spouse at work, wouldn’t you want to stand up and say something?
That’s the first key point about apologetics: protecting God’s reputation as a way of participating in a friendship with God. He’s also got some book recommendations in his post for beginnners and I could not agree more. I own every stinking one of them!
And he’s got an update here, where he makes the second key point about apologetics.
Addition to today’s post: I don’t think I underscored enough another motivation of apologetics–love.
Why defend the faith? Because we love our neighbors.
This is a good point for Christians who value love. Apologetics is love. It’s one way that you can love your neighbor. God expects us all to spend some time responding to his overtures to us in nature, in conscience, and in history. It does no good to help atheists to ignore God’s calling by keeping silent about God’s will for that person.