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THE NECESSITY OF APOLOGETICS IN THE LOCAL CHURCHES

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It is obvious that we are living in the craziest time in history regarding religious beliefs. Scholars would call this time of our history the postmodern era, the post Christian time, the post-truth age. In fact, several traits characterize this present time. This is the age of assumption, one in which many live by what they guess is true. This is also the age of secularization where there is a growing aversion for religious values. In fact, it is so prevalent in this culture to explain things from a materialistic or naturalistic view. Last but not least, culture prevails in this age as if it were the guiding principle. Obviously, it is not difficult to see that this present time is in strict opposition with the Christian faith and, thus, tends to weaken it. In other words, the Christian faith is under attack. In such a context, doing apologetics[1] has become urgent for each local church to espouse in teaching the believers, especially generations Y and Z (also called the Millennials and the Centennials), how to contend for the faith.

It is worth mentioning that this article is written to provide a summary of this topic. It is intended to fit a specific request. Yet, those traits guide the very reasons to do apologetics in the local churches. We will lay out only three of them. First, apologetics is crucial for beliefs sustaining. Second, apologetics is fundamental for equipping the believers to counter the objections of this century. Third, apologetics is complementary to the fulfillment of our mandate to make disciples (Matt. 28:19-20). With that in mind, apologetics must be seen, not as a vague practice that propels some people to a pedestal for their great knowledge but, as a serious business in which the twenty-first century churches must invest.

Sadly enough, our reality shows that there is a high percentage of young people struggling with their faith and end up drifting away from their church community to associate themselves with liberalism. According to statistics published in 2016 by Campus crusade, “approximately 70% of our engaged Christian youth are becoming disengaged when they go off to college. To make this more real, approximately 500,000 students graduate from our youth groups each year, yet, only 150,000 incoming freshmen stay engaged.”[2] Remarkably, due to the influence of this culture, the young Christian generation in general is being skeptical about the Christian faith, in addition to their questions remaining without an answer. Truth be told, most leaders and preachers, especially in our Haitian churches, are not equipped to address the challenges the youth is exposed to in their immediate circles (university, work environment, social media, etc.). The regular teachings the local churches provide are not proportional to the pressures they are struggling with. Consequently, the need to understand their faith in this present age has reached its pinnacle and, thus, invites our church leaders to take their responsibility to eventually stop this increasing crisis. In front of such an alarming situation, the need for apologetics in the life of the local churches has become an urgency. Should we not recall that Scripture urges us, as Christians, to do apologetics (1 Peter 3:15)? So, it is no surprise to aver that apologetic is not new in the life of the church nor is it something that only those who hold a high academic level can practice. Every Christian should be capable of giving a solid reason for why he believes what he believes. This is not to say that every Christian will have access to the same amount of information to refute the objections raised against the faith; however, any sound Bible training should take into consideration this need and address all concerns associated with it in this present age.

As Albert Mohler reminds it, Christians must always bear in mind that there are no questions they need fear of; there are only questions they need to learn how to answer.


By Jean Mary Saint Paulin,

President of Standing 4 Christ Ministry

M.A.T.S.; MDiv-Apologetics

[1] A work of defense in Greek is called an apology. One who writes such a defense is an apologist ... apologists spent their time making the case that Christianity was superior to paganism, Judaism, or Greek philosophy … The new school often calls this group of writers heresiologists because they sought to identify and refute heresy. (Bock L. Darrell. The Missing Gospels: Unearthing the Truth Behind Alternative Christianities. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2007). [2] Campus renewal, Connecting youth to college ministry, https://www.campusrenewal.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Campus-Renewal-Campus-Link-Grant-Proposal.pdf

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