* From the editor —
Editor Note on Christian Apologetics by Jamie Arndt
Mr. James Arndt, a graduate of Immanuel Lutheran College, Eau Claire, Wisconsin, taught for some years in our Christian Day Schools. He and his wife Rachel with their children Caleb and Audrey reside in Madison, Wisconsin, where they are members of our CLC congregation, Peace Thru Christ Lutheran Church and School, in Middleton, WI.
Perhaps our readers have noticed that within the wider “Christian” camp these days there appears to be an increasing interest in the subject of apologetics. For example, various seminars on “Christian Apologetics” have been advertised by other church denominations and have been and are being held across the land.
I think it’s safe to say that most of us, including your editor, have rarely given much thought to this particular branch of theology. Yet we have thought much—and preached much—about how Jesus’ disciples have the calling and privilege to witness to their Savior and His gospel, including defending the teachings of God’s Word and their Christian faith based on that Word. Such “witness” and/or “defense” of the faith is a form of apologetics.
That said, religious encyclopedias, dictionaries, and the like have quite a bit more to say on the topic. Here are some excerpts from one such: “Christian Apologetics is the scientific vindication of the truth and absoluteness of the Christian religion against unbelief…The term ‘Apology’ denotes an argument in defense of a doctrine that has been attacked…The philosophical approach vindicates such fundamentals of Christianity as the doctrine of God, of man’s ethical obligation, and the like, on the basis of pure reason….” (Lutheran Cyclopedia, p. 41f).
Indeed, it can be a challenging—and yes, spiritually dangerous—undertaking to defend the faith “on the basis of pure reason.” However, a Bible-believing and thus Bible-based Christian apologist/defender of the faith recognizes the dangers and carefully steers clear of them.
As is clear in his accompanying first article, Mr. Arndt wants to lead us carefully through some of the finer points of a truly Christian approach toward apologetics. We thank him for his willingness to share these thought-provoking studies with us.
May God the Holy Spirit bless each of us with a more confident and thus an even more bold witness to and defense of our holy Christian faith.