Take Up and Read: An Introduction to the New Testament

I am writing this ongoing blog series on Reflections to encourage Christians to read more vigorously and enrich their lives with Christian classics in such fields as theology, philosophy, and apologetics. Hopefully, a brief introduction to these important Christian texts will motivate today’s believers to, as St. Augustine was called in his dramatic conversion to Christianity, “take up and read” (Latin: Tolle lege) these excellent…

The Christian Apologetics Mandate

The Greek word apologia (Greek: ἀπολογία) is the root for the English term “apologetics.” Apologia and its root forms are found in the New Testament (Acts 26:2; Romans 1:20; Philippians 1:7, 16), with 1 Peter 3:15 revealing the mandate imploring Christians to be ready to explain and defend their faith. Throughout Christian history, apologetics became known as the enterprise by which apologists sought to give a reasoned defense of the truth of…

Take Up and Read: Knowing God

I am writing this ongoing blog series on Reflections to encourage Christians to read more vigorously and enrich their lives with Christian classics in such fields as theology, philosophy, and apologetics. Hopefully, a brief introduction to these important Christian texts will motivate today’s believers to, as St. Augustine was called in his dramatic conversion to Christianity, “take up and read” (Latin: Tolle lege) these excellent…

6 Straight A Christian Thinkers

The Christian church has been graced with brilliant and influential thinkers since its inception. A list of “who’s who” in Christian scholarship would be long and diverse in terms of scholarly disciplines. To whet your appetite in the areas of theology and philosophy, here’s a snapshot of six “straight A” thinkers. By “straight A,” I mean two things. First, I’m…

Take Up and Read: Making Sense of It All

I am writing this ongoing blog series on Reflections to encourage Christians to read more vigorously and enrich their lives with Christian classics in such fields as theology, philosophy, and apologetics. Hopefully, a brief introduction to these important Christian texts will motivate today’s believers to, as St. Augustine was called in his dramatic conversion to Christianity, “take up and read” (Latin: Tolle lege) these classic…

How to Discern Education vs. Propaganda

There is a lot of discussion these days about things like fake news, yellow journalism, and political propaganda. There is also a lot of attention given to whether public schools and colleges in our time educate or indoctrinate when it comes to the instruction of their students. So what’s the difference between education and propaganda? Let’s look at seven ways education differs from propaganda. First, we’ll define three…

Learning about Christian Creeds, Part 3

If you come from a non-creedal Christian church tradition—and there are a good number of them within Evangelicalism—you might wonder what a creed is and why other Christians include them in their worship services. Historical theologian Jaroslav Pelikan defines a creed thusly: “A creed is a concise, formal, and authorized statement of important points of Christian doctrine.”1 One of the great things…

Learning about Christian Creeds, Part 2

Ever hear the expression “No book but the Bible, no creed but Christ”? Ironically, it sounds a lot like a creed. Some Christians who attend churches that do not use a formal creed wonder how creeds are related to Scripture in terms of authority. From a Protestant evangelical perspective, the creeds derive their authority by faithfully conveying the message of…

Learning about Christian Creeds, Part 1

Have you ever recited the Apostles’ Creed? It is widely used in Western Christendom, both in the Roman Catholic Church and in various Protestant churches (Lutheran, Reformed, Presbyterian, Anglican, Methodist, Congregational, among others). In fact, most evangelical churches have creedal statements that serve as something like the Apostles’ Creed. Some nondenominational churches even sing the creed in their worship services. Christian historian…

Take Up and Read: Man’s Search for Meaning

This current blog series on Reflections is intended to encourage Christians to read more vigorously by providing a beginner’s guide to Christian classics in theology, philosophy, and apologetics. My hope is that these introductions to important Christian texts will motivate today’s believers to, as St. Augustine put it, “take up and read” (Latin: Tolle lege) these classic books. This week’s book, Man’s Search for Meaning, by…