Guest / Limited Access /
Reviews

/

Is Relational Evangelism Enough?
Is Relational Evangelism Enough?
Mere Apologetics: How to Help Seekers and Skeptics Find Faith
Our Rating
not rated  
Book Title
Mere Apologetics: How to Help Seekers and Skeptics Find Faith
Author
Publisher
Baker Books
Release Date
January 1, 2012
Pages
208
Price
$12.26
Buy Mere Apologetics: How to Help Seekers and Skeptics Find Faith from Amazon

Fewer and fewer Christian apologists believe in "proofs" for God's existence, and in Mere Apologetics: How to Help Seekers and Skeptics Find Faith (Baker), Alister McGrath explains why this is a good thing. Distancing himself from promises of certainty, he instead grounds his case in the more modest principle of "inference to the best explanation." In the absence of "knockdown" arguments, we're left with "abduction," the project of making the best sense we can make out of all the data—the "'meteoric shower of facts'" raining from the sky "like threads that need to be woven into a tapestry" (to quote McGrath, who's quoting the poet Edna St. Vincent Millay).

There is much wise counsel in these pages. Citing Peter's message at Pentecost, Paul's remarks on Mars Hill, and Paul's legal trial before the Roman procurator Felix, McGrath shows how it's important to tailor one's remarks to the audience. Recalling Caesar's crossing the Rubicon River, he reminds us that establishing facts without providing the larger significance is pointless. He discusses a variety of launch sites for apologetic engagement, including evidence of a fine-tuned universe, "a homing instinct for God," and "the intuition of hope." And he both urges and demonstrates the use of personal testimony in apologetics.

Along the way, McGrath plays off a host of thinkers (e.g., Søren Kierkegaard, Thomas Aquinas, Anthony Flew, Frederick Coplestone, Austin Farrer, Alisdair MacIntyre, Kevin Vanhoozer), and his own language is often dexterous. (An example: "Apologetics aims to convert believers into thinkers, and thinkers into believers.") He is comfortable appropriating images old and new, whether Plato's cave or the bar in TV's Cheers. And he provides fresh ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Browse All Book Reviews By:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
Current IssueWho Awaits the Messiah Most? Muslims
Subscriber Access Only
Who Awaits the Messiah Most? Muslims
Islam and Christianity share Second Coming hopes. Can this be a bridge?
RecommendedThe Truth of Scorsese’s Faithless Characters
The Truth of Scorsese’s Faithless Characters
In an interview with CT, ‘Silence’ director reveals why he is drawn to ‘wretches.’
TrendingCompassion Has 'Very Little Hope' for India, Sets Deadline to Shut Down Sponsorships
Compassion Has 'Very Little Hope' for India, Sets Deadline to Shut Down Sponsorships
About 145,000 children have already lost its assistance with food, education, and health care.
Editor's PickThe Church’s Integrity in the Trump Years
The Church’s Integrity in the Trump Years
It begins by recognizing the name above every name.
Christianity Today
Is Relational Evangelism Enough?
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

August 2012

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.