Like many Christians, I grew up “going” to church. I was your typical Christian kid. I read my Bible, attended Sunday and Friday services, and even participated in Bible studies during the week. But in spite of all those so-called “Christian” activities, I also partied a lot and hung out with the wrong crowd.
I came to a point in my life where I wanted to finally get my act together. I wanted to start over—to start fresh. And I wanted to get away from certain relationships and environments that I knew weren’t beneficial to me at the time.
So in 1998 I transferred high schools my senior year. I shared my faith with almost everyone that came my way. People—left and right—we’re coming to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ due to my influence.
What could go wrong?
Questions. Yes, questions. That’s what went wrong. Or maybe that’s what went right.
You see all my life I never truly questioned my faith. And then one day it hit me: I believed in a God I couldn’t see. I prayed to a Jesus I couldn’t touch. And I trusted a Bible I did not understand. “Was I gullible this whole time?” I’d ask myself.
So for the first time in my life I was challenged to find out what and why I believed. I had a crisis of belief, so to speak. So from that point forward, I went on a journey to look for answers—to look for truth.
By the grace of God, one of my teachers (the late Sharon Strauss) introduced me to something called apologetics. Apolo-what? Exactly. I had no idea what apologetics was up to that point.
(Simply put, apologetics is a defense of the Christian faith. It is a way of showing Christianity to be true.)
I was like a blank slate—a sponge—so open to learn just anything. I literally spent almost everyday with my teacher learning how to understand and defend Christianity rationally.
But I eventually reached a point in my life where I no longer try defend “Christianity” (specifically the “evangelical” version). Every religion has holes. So my goal now is to not defend any religion at all, but to seek truth, no matter where it’s found.
Personally, I don’t look for debates these days like I used to. I look for real people with real questions who are struggling to look for real answers.
So, how important is apologetics? It depends. Do you ask a lot of questions? Do you have a lot of doubts? Do those around you ask you a lot of questions? Then apologetics might be useful for you.