How should a book be organized? I just finished reading the Handbook of Christian Apologetics by Peter Kreeft and Ronald K. Tacelli. When I got to the end, it occurred to me that the end should have been at the beginning.
What did the authors put up front? It was proper and perhaps the best thing. The title of the first chapter is: “The Nature, Power, & Limitations of Apologetics”. Since most people probably don’t even know the meaning of the word apologetics, that chapter has to be up front. Still, when we don’t know where we would be headed, there is not much reason to start the trip. I suppose that is why some people check out the last chapter before they buy the book.
What is at the end of this book? The authors call that chapter “The Bottom Line”. It is about the four steps to becoming a Christian.
- The first step is mental belief. This is the point of apologetics. This is why Kreeft and Tacelli wrote their book.
- Next is repentance. Once we believe in Jesus Christ we turn from sin.
- After repentance, we must put our faith in Jesus. Whereas repentance involves turning from sin, faith requires us to turn toward Jesus.
- Finally, we must live out the teachings of Jesus Christ.
How do we put all that more succinctly? I believe Pastor Randy
at Kingdom Pastor has just written a post that explains that, 3:16. Here is the verse that he writes about (for the sake of providing a different emphasis, I cited my preferred translation).
Colossians 3:16 New King James Version (NKJV)
16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
Once we believe in Jesus, that He is real, that He is our savior, then we must make Colossians 3:16 central to our life. Then we must accomplish what Kreeft and Tacelli call steps 2 – 4.
Want to understand Colossians 3:16 better? Read post. Read 3:16.
should I get the book Tom?
If you like the subject of philosophy. Kreeft and Tacelli systematically example the proofs of God’s existence. In addition, they logically examine whether or not we have logical reasons (sufficient proof) for being disciples of Jesus. I think the book quite good. If you like C. S. Lewis (Kreeft and Tacelli are fans), you will probably like this book. However, the style of writing is quite different.
I do love CS Lewis and philosophy is good but is it a difficult and laborious read?
The book is not difficult to read. Quite readable, as a matter of fact. If you want some idea of how Kreeft writes, check out => http://www.peterkreeft.com/featured-writing.htm.
Thank you Tom– why do I think I have read something by him– probably from our blog world
One reason defending Christianity is a dauntless, and sometimes even a hopeless task in the USA is because more and more children are no longer attending religious based schools
In other words, a person who has never been introduced to God, will not be able to comprehend or recognize Him and His creations all around him or her. When they argue against Him among themselves, it is same as the blind leading the blind. When they argue with Apologists, the words they hear are as if the Apologists is speaking to a deaf person.
I sure hope Trump comes through with school vouchers.
Regards and goodwill blogging.
Thanks for making that point.
Thank you Tom for this post, great insights! And I am humbled you referenced 3:16 post. Thanks, my fellow brother in Christ!