There are many situations in which a person knows they will be required to answer questions.
- Students have exams.
- Job seekers have interviews.
- Presidential candidates have debates.
- Head coaches have press conferences.
- Witnesses have direct and cross examination.
In each of these scenarios, there are specific questions that are certainly going to be asked. And whomever is receiving those questions must be ready to respond, and respond well. One quick way to lose credibility with any audience is to be unprepared for the obvious questions.
In training young forensic scientists, I spend much time helping them prepare to testify. They know the laboratory techniques they use in processing evidence. They understand the instrumentation. They can interpret the scientific data. But out of the volumes of questions that could potentially be asked, I focus on preparing them to answer the questions they are most likely to be asked. Once they become proficient at answering those questions, they are more comfortable with testimony and can better handle the unexpected questions when they come.
The Apostle Peter wrote that we are to “be prepared to give an answer for the hope that we have.” In conversation with skeptics and critics of Christianity, the apologist should at least be prepared to answer the following objections:
- If God is love, why is there so much suffering in the world?
- Why would a loving God send people to hell?
- Aren’t all religions basically the same?
- Truth is relative. Everyone gets to define their own truth.
- The Bible is a translation of a translation of a translation. We have no way of knowing what the authors originally wrote.
It is likely that at some point an unusual question will be asked of the apologist. However, the vast majority of objections will be drawn from a relatively small number of topics. Because of this, the Christian can focus on these topics as they are learning how to defend their faith.
In response to Peter’s admonition, may all Christians work to become prepared to give defense for the truths of Christianity.
Which question(s) do you wish Christians had a good answers for?
Which question(s) do you get asked most often by skeptics or critics?
I look forward to our conversation.