Josh McDowell: My 3-Pillar Approach to Apologetics

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Welcome! Thanks for joining us for this, our latest post in our year-long blog series we’re calling “Journey Together.” In this post Josh explains his 3-pillar approach to Apologetics.

 


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Many people ask me, “Josh, you’re an apologist. So why do you talk about sex and pornography?”

Here’s why: I believe the rapid decline of our society demands it. I am, indeed, a classical apologist. But I must now focus on relational and moral apologetics as well, if I am to fully share God’s truth. Let me explain these three pillars further:

Classical Apologetics

As an evidential apologist I share evidence that confirms the truthfulness of the Bible. The term “apologist” actually means “to set forth positive reasons why you believe.” I believe, with all that I am, that Jesus is who He says He is, because God’s Word can be trusted. Though I started out a disbelieving skeptic, it has been God’s call on my life, for the last 50 years, to share the evidence that supports both of these claims!

But here’s the problem: I recognized, years ago, that when we try to present truth outside of the context of relationships, it’s so often rejected. So I can’t just be focused on the evidence itself, but on whether people are in productive relationships — an established foundation of trust, openness, and acceptance — to have productive conversations about God.

Relational Apologetics

Here’s the phrase I created to express this: Truth without relationships leads to rejection. So I want to help people to build good relationships with each other. I especially want parents to have these relationships of trust with their kids, so our youth won’t disregard God’s truths. I call this relational apologetics.

Moral Apologetics

I also discovered that the number one barrier that keeps a young person from trusting Christ, God, or the Scriptures is morality. That’s why I launched the “Why Wait” campaign years ago. Today,  the greatest barrier to a person coming to Christ is pervasive internet pornography, which has become a huge societal problem — even inside the Church. We must address porn addiction head-on, if Christianity is to maintain a positive influence in society.

So, I hope you now understand why these three pillars are our current focus here at Josh McDowell Ministry. My team and I thank you so much for your support, both your prayers and your financial gifts, to keep our efforts going!

Josh


In our next blog post, we look at topic many parents would rather skip: talking to their kids about sex.

Catch up: The introductory post to this series.

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