Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone (Colossians 4:5-6, NLT).
All of us should be able to give reasons for our belief in Jesus and the Bible. Apologetics is a technical term for defending our faith.
I’ve read books on apologetics for over 50 years. I can explain why the Bible is reliable, provide historical support for the resurrection of Jesus, and tell anyone why faith in God is rational.
But the questions or challenges to our faith have changed in the past few decades. Culture’s success in attacking Christianity has brought an assumption that Christians are narrow-minded, anti-scientific, and against choice.
Words like “none” and “done” describe how many perceive our faith today. “None” means no faith affiliation, and “done” indicates a blatant desire to have nothing to do with Christians or the church.
Those who challenge us aren’t interested in proof or evidence because they consider the Christian religion antagonistic to their humanistic values and too often just look at us as irrelevant.
This is why you need to spend the summer reading the book, The Air We Breathe by Glen Scrivener.
Warning: This book has layers of insight that will take time to understand and appreciate. I usually read books in an hour, but I’ve been slowly reading a chapter a week from this book.
In the Air We Breathe, the illustration of a goldfish is used. I know this doesn’t seem philosophically complicated or difficult to understand.
So let the book speak for itself . . .
If you are a Westerner, you are a goldfish, and Christianity is the water in which you swim . . . Christianity is the air we breathe . . . both unseen and all-persuasive . . . we all depend on values and goals that have been deeply shaped by the Jesus Revolution (otherwise known as Christianity).
These values are now so all-persuasive that we consider them to be universal, obvious, and natura: the air we breathe.
The book discusses how the “hot-button” ideas of equality, compassion, consent, enlightenment, science, freedom, and progress all originated from the Bible.
By reading this book, the next time that someone says to you, “Christians are unscientific,” you will be able to explain that what we know as “science” began with Christianity.
And you can say the same thing about topics like equality, justice, progressive thinking, consent, freedom, and rational thinking. Though some of these themes have been stretched far afield from Biblical teaching, they still began with the Bible!
The “nones” and “dones,” along with detractors and atheists, are using arguments originating in the Bible to undermine the Christian faith.
HHHHMMMHHM . . . nothing else to say here except . . . HHHHMMMHHM!
As the book says (and what you can point out in giving an answer to those who criticize our faith) . . .
You might consider yourself a total outsider to the Christian faith. My first word is: don’t be so sure. Goldfish might not know the chemical composition of H2O, but it’s still central to their lives.
We are all goldfish living in a world of Christian values. When someone challenges our faith, we can point out that their values, which they believe Christians violate – all originated from the Bible.
Read Glen Scrivener’s book, The Air We Breathe, at the beach this summer. Then be ready to have some fascinating conversations with those questioning Jesus or the irrelevancy of Christianity.
But while at the beach, do not change the “goldfish” illustration to a “shark illustration,” as that won’t go over so well.