I’ve heard a lot of so-called “conscious” people say Christians are brain dead and just full of emotions. I used to be one of them. There used to be a time when I thought Christianity was the dumbest religion on earth. Some so-called conscious people even refer to African American Christians as “black zombies”.
I remember asking questions like “how could Jesus be God?”, “how did Noah get all those animals onto the ark?”, or “how come modern Jewish people don’t look like the ancient Israelites?”. The only response I would ever get would be “only god knows all things”, or “just gotta have faith”, or “just know that God loves you”. And it would all end with the infamous “I’ll pray for you”. But no questions where really answered. So yeah “black zombies” sounded about right to me too at the time.
Then by the grace of God I accepted Yeshua/Jesus Christ as my Lord and savior, and things changed. I no longer saw all Christians as blind religious and overly emotional zombies. As a matter of fact the Christians I started to meet where actually very educated not only in the Bible, but how it related to secular studies too. They knew how to connect the Bible with science, languages, history, archeology, philosophy, and current world views.They showed me that Christianity invites you to ask questions and weigh the evidence.Click To Tweet
Then I read these verses:
Matthew 22:37-38 (CSB)
37 He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. 38 This is the greatest and most important command.
And it was then that the Holy Spirit brought to light in me the expansiveness of the scriptures. These verses showed me that God was to be actively pursued in a wholistic manner. And one manner of worshiping God was with our mental faculties. The Bible when studied and meditated upon has the power of unleashing mental illumination that can stifle even its most harsh critics.
Our Christian forefathers have written volumes on the most theologically challenging topics about God, the Bible, the church, and religion in general, that it could keep one mentally preoccupied for a lifetime. Church fathers like Augustine and Athanasias have been known for their mental prowess. Christians have written multiple books just to explain a couple of Bible verses. There have been councils since the infancy of the church where scholars gathered to iron out theological issues which many today have yet to grasp.
So to say Christianity is brain dead is an unproved analysis. Yes there are many Christians who overly promote the spiritual/emotional aspects of our faith. But this doesn’t negate the fact that Christian scholars since the 1st century have been engaging not only religious opposition, but also secular opposition in a very intellectually robust manner.
When dealing with urban apologetics it’s very important to know how to read and engage the mental stamina of your critics. But remember all of this is ultimately by the will of God through your devote prayers for the lost. Your testimony and theological persuasion should point them to Christ and not you and your mental/oratory skills.Your evangelizing should not be 'wow you really know your stuff' but 'wow you really glorify Christ'.Click To Tweet
Some tools that all Christians should have in their arsenal is a Bible with cross references, a bible handbook, a concordance, a Bible dictionary, a book on church history, a book on biblical theology, and a book on systematic theology. This should be your starting point with having the proper tools to study the Bible. And of course begin all studies in prayer first.
Last but not least attending a local church. You can’t be a Lone Ranger in your studies. You need the feedback of other mature Christians and elders to help guide you. This feedback will help solidify as well as correct theological error. Sunday sermons feed all parts of your being and play an important role for the heady theologian in keeping you balanced.You can't be a theological beast and not attend a local church. Apologetics starts in the church.Click To Tweet
And let’s not forget; the only reason why we can lovingly connect with God in the whole of our being (which includes our intellect) is because he first loved us so that we could connect with him.
1 John 4:19 (CSB)
19 We love because he first loved us.
Grace and peace!