April 29th, 2019
I enjoy delving into the details. That’s true of anything I have an interest in. My background in engineering places my mind in constant investigative mode. I have a deep-seated desire to know the causation and the result, along with everything in-between.
This can cross over into my engagement with the Word of God. I love apologetics. You may or may not know what apologetics is. It isn’t the fine art of apologizing.
Here is the actual definition for you…
When applied to God’s Word apologetics is the reasoned argument in defense of the scripture.
There are those who make an avocation of scripture apologetics, and what we are talking about today isn’t to denounce those efforts. We are told specifically defend our faith.
But even if you should suffer for righteousness, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear or be intimidated, but in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy, ready at any time to give a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.
1 Peter 3:14-15 (CSB)
We have a responsibility to prepare a defense of our faith. But there is a bridge too far, when we allow ourselves to be caught up in pointless argument over scriptural verses worldly matters.
One good example of this is in our faith in the accuracy of the creation account recorded in the book of Genesis. Old world philosophy would suggest that the world is billions of years old and attempt to explain the first few chapters of Genesis as each day for God being equal to thousands if not millions of years for us.
They do this to provide an allowance for the theories of the world to have an opportunity to mature through the ages. The basis on their understanding requires more than the allotted time to accomplish the effects they prescribe to our evolution.
We simply haven’t evolved into the human form, you can’t fit evolution into the scripture, the two concepts are polar opposite. Trying to make the scripture conform to worldly reason only denies the deity and power of God.
Be careful that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit based on human tradition, based on the elements of the world, rather than Christ.
Colossians 2:8 (CSB)
If our dabbling in scriptural apologies becomes anything else that a recognition of the authenticity of God’s Word, we have ventured into the philosophy trap our enemy would want us to become distracted with. Theory and philosophy of human sourced understanding should never be used as a mold to fit the scripture into. When we do this, we have effectively stepped over this line between scriptural apologetics and attempting to justify the Word of God by the world’s standard.
This is why Paul was warning the Colossians to not become entrapped in this useless conduct. God isn’t subject to the properties of this world, He created it and if he so choses he can make anything behave or appear in any manner he chooses.
If God placed a brand-new car in your driveway with the keys in it, registration, licensing, and insurance in place; it would not require him to run to the dealership, insurance company, and licensing department to get this accomplished.
All God would need to do is speak it into being and it would be done. He’s not subject to the same limitations we are. As soon as we begin to place conditions on God or His Word, we treed dangerous close to denying who God is.
Being a disciple of Jesus involves faith. There are few Christian who don’t recall Ephesians 2:8-9.
For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift — not from works, so that no one can boast.
If we really let this soak in, you see the peril we face when we allow the enemy to draw us into the snare of supposed intellectual resolution of God’s Word. When knowledge supplants faith, we have no faith at all.
Confirmation by evidence is one thing, but when it’s allowed to detract from our being as accepting of God’s Word as authoritative truth, we wander down pathways fraught with ever diminishing faithfulness.
Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable — if there is any moral excellence and if there is anything praiseworthy — dwell on these things.
Philippians 4:8 (CSB)
“Be careful that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit based on human tradition”, because this leads to nowhere worthy of a disciple of Jesus Christ.
Accepting God’s truth as fact, is faith. If we want to have faith, then there is only one way to secure that faith, which is to invest our full trust and hope in what God tells us in his Word. Anything less than that makes us “Philosophical Captives” and diminishes God in our hearts.
In the Grace of Jesus!