Notice: All of the answers you’re looking for are in the bible. I, a pastor, or any well educated theologian can tell you all about what we believe, why we believe it, and what we know about history that corroborates with it, but you have to know Jesus and place your faith in Him as the mediator of your sins to be saved (see Romans 10:9-10). The question isn’t if you know or don’t know. The question is if you will serve Him or the god of your own devices.
The pharisees, that is, the church elders of Jesus’ time, knew the scriptures so well that they could recite them verbatim. Even so, they did not recognize that those sacred texts were talking about Him (see John 5:39-47). Frankly put, their knowledge did not save them. What you know will NOT give you good standing with God. This is about your heart.
This is my meager attempt to provide a very basic and introductory level of Christian apologetics. Many men more brilliant, educated, articulate, and respected have undertaken this venture before me. I’ll be directing you to their books, lectures, and debates to get a more indepth look into the answers I’m going to attempt to explain. Some of this material is available for free and I’ll provide those links whenever I can. Some of it will cost something, but I’ll stick to referring to relatively cheap or free resources as they come to mind.
Providing a good apologetic, a defense of the faith, is something some Christians struggle with. Some may not know why they believe what they believe. Some may know why they believe what they do, but aren’t able to clearly articulate it. This can be frustrating for the skeptic that is genuinely curious. This is important to God as well (See 1 Peter 3:15). Knowing what you believe, why you believe it, and properly expressing your faith isn’t just a useful conversation starter. It’s a command from God.
What you know may not redeem your soul, but knowledge is still important. When questioned about the greatest commandment, Jesus addresses this (see Matthew 22:34-40). God wants you to love Him with your mind. A Christian that’s failing to do this is in sin. You may have been lead to believe that you have to turn your brain off to believe, but it’s demonstrably false. The bible is a very intellectually rigorous text that contains some of the thoughts, feelings, and motives of God. We are limited in our capacity to fully understand God (see Deuteronomy 29:29), but He has given us the capacity to understand what we need to know about Him in order to be saved and properly honor Him.
If you are serious about gaining knowledge, even wisdom, you should pray for it before reading scripture (see James 1:5). If you humble yourself and truly seek to know Him, God will give you all the wisdom you need (see Jeremiah 29:13). If it’s still not abundantly clear that using your head is an act of worship, there are plenty of other verses that reveal that it is so (see Job 12:12 / Psalm 37:30 / Proverbs 3:7 / Proverbs 4:6-7 / Proverbs 13:1 / Ecclesiastes 2:26 / 1 Corinthians 1:25 / Colossians 2:2-3 / James 3:17 / 1 Corinthians 1:30 / Proverbs 29:11 / Proverbs 14:1 / Proverbs 15:12 / Proverbs 19:20). These verses are all snapshots of what God has to say about wisdom. To gain a more robust understanding, I’d suggest reading all of the chapters of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes in the Old Testament and James in the New Testament.
The verse I want to emphasize the most is Proverbs 1:7. It’s the verse I look at as the knowledge lynchpin. If Christ be true, any supposed wisdom that does not flow out of Him is a lie. If Christ’s claims be true, there are implications for justice, sexuality, marriage, divorce, politics, fashion and every other facet of life. He claims to be King of Kings and Lord of All. Those are lofty claims we are not to take lightly. We are even warned that we should consider what we may have to give up should we decide to follow Him (Luke 14:25-33 / Matthew 8:18-22 / John 6:59-65 / Luke 9:57-62).
This is just the first of many posts concerning this, but I’m going to end at this for now. There are many verses to read and consider that I’ve shared with you so far. Though I am eager to share more information, I want these posts to be easily digestible. I’ll also have to do my best to not spoonfeed too much information to people that are not genuinely interested in engaging the Christian belief system and how we arrive at the conclusions we’ve made concerning God and Christ.
Voddie Baucham – Why I Believe the Bible (YouTube)