The apologetic nature of a transformed life
I once read the story of a pastor who was invited to debate an atheist. The pastor agreed to debate on one condition – that the atheist would bring 50 people who had been transformed by being atheists. The pastor in turn would bring 50 people who had been transformed by the power of Jesus Christ. As you may have guessed, the atheist admitted he would not be able to find many people impacted by rejecting Christian theism.
As you seek to give an answer for the hope that is within you (1 Peter 3:15), please don’t forget the power of testimony. Don’t forget about what Christ has done in your own life, but also in the lives of millions upon millions of other people. Like the blind man healed by Jesus, we can confidently say as Christians, “One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see” (John 9:25). It is only Jesus Christ who has the power to transform and heal our sin-sick lives. By all means, we must seek to present a rational defense of the Christian faith, just don’t forget that there is a place for testimony in our apologetics.
No one has ever been transformed by rejecting the existence of God. But millions upon millions of people have been transformed by the rescuing power of Jesus Christ. As the Scriptures remind us, “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:17-18).
If you are a genuine believer, God has given you new life (John 3:1-8, 1 Peter 1:3) through the saving work of Jesus Christ. Don’t be shy. Tell the world what God has done for you!
The Rev. Daniel Stegeman is pastor of Pine Glen Alliance Church in Lewistown. You can find more articles like this on his blog www.pastoral-theology.com