Auckland Event: Introduction to Apologetics Course with Stuart McEwing

This month, I’ll be running an introductory apologetics course at my church. The course will begin tonight and run for ten weeks. It’s open to anyone. Here are the details:

[pk_info_box width=”0″] What: Introduction to Apologetics: defending the faith with reason and evidence

When: Tuesdays, 7pm (beginning on Feb 12)

Where: Encounter Christian Centre 495 Rosebank Road Avondale New Zealand [/pk_info_box]

Introduction to Apologetics: defending the faith with reason and evidence

The apostle Paul, writing about the necessary qualifications for a minister of the gospel, says “He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.” (Titus 1:9). It’s not enough to merely explain what Christianity is, Paul argues that it must also be defended. Apologetics is exactly this – providing a rational defense for the Christian truth-claims.

This course is for everyone who wants to dig deeper into the evidence for Christianity, confront honest questions about God and the Bible, and develop tools to talk effectively and meaningfully about the Gospel. Over ten weeks, we’ll examine topics like the evidence for Jesus’ resurrection, why God allows suffering, and how to declare the Gospel in a world that doesn’t believe in objective truth anymore. If you have ever wanted to connect your head with your heart or sharpen your evangelistic witness, this course can help you.

Course text book:
William Lane Craig, On Guard: Defending your faith with Reason and Precision

Course Overview:

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Lesson 1. Getting started: What is apologetics and why is it necessary?

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What the Bible tells us about giving reasons for why we believe, and the broader benefits of apologetics.

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Lesson 2. Standing for Truth: How do we declare the Gospel in today’s world?

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– What is the nature of truth and faith
– Knowing and showing the truth with grace
– What makes a good argument

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Lesson 3. Cosmic evidence Part 1: For a Creator of the Universe

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– Argument from sufficient reason
– Argument from the beginning of the universe

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Lesson 4. Cosmic evidence Part 2: For a Fine-tuner of the Universe

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– Intelligent Design and the argument for a cosmic designer
– What does it mean if evolution is true?

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Lesson 5. Moral Evidence: Does the universe need a Moral-Lawgiver?

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– On the Moral Argument for God’s existence from objective moral values and duties

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Lesson 6. Historical Evidence Part 1: Who did Jesus believe he was?

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– Assessing the trilemma of Lunatic, Liar, Lord
– Jesus’ radical self-conception in the Gospels
– The problem of miracles: are they possible, and can we know it?

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Lesson 7. Historical Evidence Part 2: Did Jesus rise from the dead?

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– Historical evidence for the resurrection of Jesus

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Lesson 8. Deliver Us From Evil: Can we reconcile a good God with the suffering in the world?

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– Assessing the problem of evil and providing an explanation for the suffering in world and why it seems that God hides from us.

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Lesson 9. The Scandal of Christian Particularism: Is Jesus the Only Way?

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– Answering common objections to the problem posed by religious diversity and those who never hear the gospel.

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Lesson 10. By the Book: Why is the Bible a Reliable Guide to knowing God?

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– A sketch of the external and internal evidence for the New Testament and how to deal with alleged discrepancies in the Bible.

In association with: Thinking Matters and Encounter Christian Centre

5 replies
  1. Phillip Gow says:

    This looks like a great course. I think Auckland EV would be keen to support and help and go to something like this. I know so many young uni students who throw away their faith as soon as it gets questioned at university. It would be good to equip people with the solid reasons for christianity before that happens. 

  2. Jason says:

     Hi Phillip,

    That’s great to hear. I’m sure Stuart would love to have you guys along. I know Zachary is also hoping to run some apologetic events aimed directly at students this year and if there is anything else we can do to particularly help Auckland EV in the area of apologetics, please let us know.

  3. Stuart McEwing says:

    Hello Phillip,

    If you have friends whom you think would like to come or would benefit from these classes, free free to bring them along. Its not too late. So far I only have given an apologetic for apologetics, which is not hard to catch up on. Also, attending 8 of the 10 classes is all the attendance required to be eligible for the certificate.

    Our course textbook On Guard by William Lane Craig is available for under $20 at the http://www.bookdepository.co.uk which has free shipping and usually arrives within 7 days. The first three chapters are viewable online as a google book. And the Kindle edition is also available for $9.

    Next Tuesday, 19 February, we will be talking about how to stand for truth and defend the gospel in today’s marketplace of ideas. 

    All the best.

  4. Stuart McEwing says:

    12 February

    01: Getting started:

    What is apologetics and why is it necessary?

    19 February

    02: Standing for Truth:

    How do we declare the Gospel in todays world? 

    26 February

    03: Cosmic Evidence:
    For a Creator of the Universe

    05 March

    04: Design Evidence:

    For a Fine-tuner of the Universe

    12 March

    05: Moral Evidence:

    Does the universe need a Moral-lawgiver?

    19 March

    06: Historical Evidence Part I:
    Who did Jesus believe he was?

    26 March

    07: Historical Evidence Part II:
    Did Jesus rise from the dead?

    02 April

    08: Deliver us from Evil: Can we reconcile
    a good God with the suffering in the world?

    09 April

    09: The Scandal of Particularism:
    Is Jesus the Only Way?

    16 April

    10: By the Book:

    Is the Bible a reliable guide to knowing God?

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