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Come Reason's Apologetics Notes blog will highlight various news stories or current events and seek to explore them from a thoughtful Christian perspective. Less formal and shorter than the Web site articles, we hope to give readers points to reflect on concerning topics of the day.

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Tuesday, September 09, 2014

The Bible Commands Us More Than Once to Defend Our Faith

There are many passages in the Bible that command us to go out there and stand up for the faith. The most often quoted is 1 Peter 3:15 which reads, “but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence."The Greek word for  "defense" is apologia, which is where we come up with the name for Christian apologetics. The word doesn't mean just any defense, though. It means to make a reasoned defense like a debater would make to win the debate or a trial lawyer would make to prove his client's innocence. As Christians, we are to prepare ourselves with a thoughtful response to those who ask about our beliefs.

There are many other passages in scripture that also encourage us to be ready to defend our faith. Here are just a few:

Scriptures Encouraging Us to Defend Our Faith

Proverbs 25:11 "Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a word spoken in right circumstances."
Proverbs 26:5 "Answer a fool as his folly deserves, that he not be wise in his own eyes."
Acts 17:16-17 "Now while Paul was waiting for them at Athens, his spirit was being provoked within him as he was observing the city full of idols. So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles."
Acts 22:1 "Brethren and fathers, hear my defense which I now offer to you."
2 Corinthians 4, 6,7 "…commending ourselves as servants of God … in knowledge… in the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness."
2 Corinthians 5:11a "Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men…"
Philippians 1:16 "I am appointed for the defense of the gospel."
Colossians 4:6 "Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person."
2 Timothy 2:16 "All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness."
2 Timothy 2:25 "…with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth."
Titus 1:9 "…holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict."
1 Peter 3:15 "…always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you…"
One of my favorite passages in this category is Proverbs 22:17-21. The passage reads:
Incline your ear and hear the words of the wise,
And apply your mind to my knowledge;
For it will be pleasant if you keep them within you,
That they may be ready on your lips.
So that your trust may be in the LORD,
I have taught you today, even you.
Have I not written to you excellent things
Of counsels and knowledge,
To make you know the certainty of the words of truth
That you may correctly answer him who sent you?
In another post, I've gone over some of the detail of these verses, but I do think the passage above tells us a lot about God's desire for us in a world filled with hostility toward His ways. In Proverbs 22, He offers us instruction like a father would instruct his son before sending him off for the first time to go out and live on his own. And what is the advice that our Heavenly Father gives us to face the world? We are to heed the words of the wise so that our trust may be in Him! We are to apply our minds to His knowledge! This means that in order to have a full relationship with Him, we need to pursue God intellectually as well as emotionally. God commands us to do so.


  1. I noticed one verse was left out that I think could make the case for Negative Apologetics stronger, 2 Corinthians 10:5 "We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ". I heard at the UnApologetics Conference in Corpus Christi, Texas that Dr. William Lane Craig mentioned this to be his favorite verse, one that he feels compelled to strongly and even writes after his signature in autographed books to people


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