By Jean E. Jones
Four resources for those just getting started in Christian apologetics–giving reasons for faith
First Peter 3:15 tells us to always be “prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.” But when you first start answering seekers and skeptics, preparing can seem overwhelming because of the mountain of material out there. Here are four resources for anyone just starting out in giving reasons for faith. They won’t overwhelm you, and they’ll give you a solid foundation upon which you can build.
Bible: NIV Study Bible
Having a good study Bible is an essential for knowing your Bible well, and knowing your Bible is the first step towards effectively sharing your faith. A study Bible will explain cultural and historical details, and will answer questions about apparent discrepancies. The NIV Study Bible is my favorite because it presents multiple views for passages about which evangelical scholars have different opinions (for instance, both Calvinist and Arminian interpretations). Being familiar with multiple views can help keep us from majoring in the minors; it also promotes unity—an essential since Jesus said people will know we’re his disciples by our love for each other.
Book: The Reason for God
This book, The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism, is worth its weight in diamonds just for how it demonstrates respectful engagement with skeptics. Dr. Timothy Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian in New York City, gathered the seven main objections that NY twenty-somethings had against Christianity. In Part 1, he clearly presents the objections and answers them with understanding and respect. In Part 2 he argues for belief in Jesus as Savior. This book is excellent both for learning how to give reasons for faith and for handing out to seekers…