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Thread: Why is apologetics almost unknown?

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    tWebber TheWall's Avatar
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    Why is apologetics almost unknown?

    I don't get it. Thousands of years worth of evidence and arguements and I didnt know about any of even the most basic stuff untill relatively recently.
    Why is that? Why is this information not thrusted into the public eye?

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    tWebber
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    I think it has to do with the fact that most people are too busy living their lives, or simply don't care to venture into these cerebral areas of study. They might view it as a fruitless endeavor that isn't going to prove anything significant one way or another and, therefore, opt instead to spend their time on more practical things that lead to concrete ends. I think on average, an individual needs to possess an initial intellectual interest in religion or philosophy, and the more they pursue that interest, the greater chance will be that they come across apologetics of the Christian, Islamic, etc. faith(s).

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    tWebber Spartacus's Avatar
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    Oh, to be young again...

    I stumbled into apologetics as a teenager. I've also come across a number of other people who discovered apologetics at around the same age and were similarly drawn into it. I don't know if I would have been intellectually ready for it prior to then, so even if I'd heard the word used prior to that, I wouldn't have grasped its significance, and the thing itself would still have struck me as surprising and compelling and asked "why in the world don't we talk about this more???"

    ... but almost ten years later, I don't see it as quite as wonderful as I thought at first. For many people, apologetics is just preaching to the choir. I'm glad I learned about it, and I wouldn't have gotten into the study of theology, or, if I would have, not as readily or profitably, without apologetics. However, the arguments are of limited utility in the end.

    I think one of the key realizations for me was the different roles of the will and the intellect in a person's faith or lack thereof. Apologetics can clear away intellectual obstacles to faith, but I usually think of faith as a matter of the will, not the intellect. And apologetics doesn't do much for people who are in emotional crises of faith, which are, by my impressions at least, more common. Apologetics is fine to keep in your back pocket, and it's good for you to learn about and participate in these arguments while they hold your interest, but the arguments themselves aren't really all that useful.

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    For me, apologetics was useful when I didn't know exactly where I stood. Now that I do feel sure, with a quiet sort of confidence, I feel that to exclusively focus on apologetics would be to be spinning in place. There is so much more to explore as part of my walk, you know?
    For what was given to everyone for the use of all, you have taken for your exclusive use. The earth belongs not to the rich, but to everyone. - Ambrose, 4th century AD

    All cruelty springs from weakness. - Seneca the Younger

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    tWebber TheWall's Avatar
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    Intruiging answers.
    I find it interesting because generally I like learning. I want to learm as much about my faith as I can.

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    Professor KingsGambit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheWall View Post
    Intruiging answers.
    I find it interesting because generally I like learning. I want to learm as much about my faith as I can.
    And you certainly do learn a lot about it through study of apologetics.
    For what was given to everyone for the use of all, you have taken for your exclusive use. The earth belongs not to the rich, but to everyone. - Ambrose, 4th century AD

    All cruelty springs from weakness. - Seneca the Younger

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    tWebber TheWall's Avatar
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    Yeah. Still a lot of it is intra personal. Learning about yourself and your struggles. It isn't the easiest thing in the world.
    Then you have other people. I really am amazed how much you can learn from your fellows.

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    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spartacus View Post
    Oh, to be young again...
    And apologetics doesn't do much for people who are in emotional crises of faith, which are, by my impressions at least, more common.
    I found apologetics to be very helpful when I had an emotional crisis of faith, so I think you may be underestimating its usefulness

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    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celebrian View Post
    I found apologetics to be very helpful when I had an emotional crisis of faith, so I think you may be underestimating its usefulness
    I also have found this.
    3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures --1 Corinthians 15:3-4 (borrowed with gratitude from 37818's sig)

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    Its useful when I am trying to find certain meanings to scripture or confront something in life. If I am or have the time to engage in a debate with someone (hard with 3 youngins) then I really like it. Its also useful to understand specific meanings of scriptures and how to read them so that when I am confronted with a decision or heretical teaching I can refute it specifically. And if I am asking questions or discussing something with a pastor it becomes useful. But I'm not sure that most people were called to be scholars. A lot of folks tend to accept scripture with a "face value" reading and never look deeper. There is a psychological theory behind this, but I'll write more about that later. It has to do with how our brain develops higher functioning and thought.
    A happy family is but an earlier heaven.
    George Bernard Shaw

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