Both skeptics and Christians are guilty of not thinking through their beliefs. Clichés and bumper-sticker wisdom are examples of unexamined philosophy that we all fall back on at times. Many skeptics don’t know why they believe what they believe and merely parrot the clichés of today’s culture with expressions such as: “All religions are the same”; “Against abortion? Don’t have one”; “That’s true for you but not true for me”; “Science has disproven the Bible”; and “Christianity is so exclusive!”
Christians resort to churchisms such as: “Let go and let God”; “Love the sinner, hate the sin”; “I have Jesus in my heart”; “God said it. I believe it. That settles it!” As Twain put it, are these responses “worth a brass farthing”?
Although being a scholar is not a prerequisite for being an effective believer, we all should be able to explain in basic language how our faith is different and why it makes sense. The term “thinking Christian” should not be an oxymoron.
A potential-believer friend of mine recently made a discouraging observation. He said, “It’s funny, when I ask people who say they are Christians if they believe the Bible is inerrant, many of them say, ‘No.’ And when I ask Christians who do believe the Bible is inerrant why they believe it, they say something like, ‘You just have to have faith.’”
Would these answers motivate you to learn more about Christianity if you were an unbeliever? Although it’s true that “you can’t just reason people to Jesus,” it is also true that ignorance won’t win them over. Reasonable arguments are necessary to raise their interest, give them food for thought, and demonstrate the credibility of Christians and Christianity.