Monday, March 19, 2018

Sunday, March 4, 2018

The best apologetics is good systematics

Now, apologetics is not a distinct genre of religious thinking. There are no apologetic reasons and arguments that do not belong in the ordered exposition of Christian belief traditionally known as “doctrine.” The only satisfactory reason to believe is the reason of belief. If I could think out for myself a total and rationally coherent account of all my beliefs, I would have found all the reasons I knew for anyone else to believe as I believed. If I were then to urge some other reasons for believing, it would have to be a pseudo-reason that I did not myself believe, and I would be a charlatan.

Apologetics is, on the other hand, a distinct genre of exposition. For dialogue’s sake I may organize my account of my beliefs in relation to somebody else’s doubts or counter-arguments. The rational equilibrium always remains the same: a reason for an unbeliever not to be swayed by an argument against belief is at the same time a reason for a believer not to be swayed by it. Yet different trains of theological thought may acquire greater or lesser apologetic weight circumstantially, as the crises or doubts of the culture may dictate at any moment.
 From The Ways of Judgment (xiii) from O’Donovan, as cited by Dereck Rishmawy

Tuesday, January 23, 2018


There are still places where, if church members found themselves sitting around a kitchen table, the discussion of correct doctrine, of who knows and understands it, would be carried on with great enthusiasm. However, if spiritual matters that pertain to the passion of the soul were to be suddenly interjected, such as the closeness to God in prayer, the stirring of mercy and compassion, etc., the conversation would be met with a measure of embarrassment.

From JohninAwe at Experimental Cosmology comment box

Friday, January 12, 2018

Doodling

Before I ask a minister whom I don’t know what theologians he reads, I ask him what novels he has read. If he reads novels, I go on to poetry. If he doesn’t read novels, I lose interest in the conversation. Then, for my nightly devotions, I pray for those who listen to his sermons and experience his pastoral care.
From Kim Frabricus