At 5pm Church TOGETHER this week we looked at what ‘Apologetics’ is and what the Christian Apologist might look like.
The apostle Peter called upon Christians to be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have (1 Peter 3:15). The greek word for ‘answer’ here is apologia[n] which means ‘a speech in defense’. It is where we get the English word ‘apology’ and it is where the idea of ‘apologetics’ is derived.
There are several times in the New Testament where a verbal answer is on show. It is used when someone is defending themselves against falsehood (e.g. Acts 22:1; 25:16; 1 Co. 9:3; 2 Co. 7:11; 2 Tim. 4:16) as well when someone is defending the gospel (e.g. Phil. 1:7, 16; 1 Pet. 3:15). Nothing sorry about that!
Christians are called to stand firm for the gospel – that is not always an easy task. Occasionally the reason a Christian cites for not being comfortable ‘standing firm in faith’ is that they feel ill-equip. Understandable – but also avoidable.
At church on Sunday, we will be profiling some of the ways that we can help one another and help ourselves train for the sake of the gospel. I want to encourage you to make this a year when you equip yourself further – so that you might be better able to stand firm for the truth of the gospel which saves you – and will save the lives of those around you.
Every apology necessary, but no need to say sorry!
‘So then, stand firm and hold to the teachings passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter’
(The Apostle Paul, Silas and Timothy to the Church in Thessalonica – 2 Thess 2:15)