Christlife Posture: Loving Like Jesus

Topic: Defending My Beliefs

Suggested Approach: Choose 1 thing from each of the three boxes

OR Choose 1 from Media or Reflection + 1 from Scripture 

Media Excursions (Watch/read/listen and be ready to discuss Q's)

Video Clips

Song

  • Salt and Light (Jami Smith) As you think of defending your faith to someone, which images in this song strike you as you consider the way you choose to defend your faith?

Articles 

  • Defending the Faith (series, various authors) Read one or two of the 9 articles listed. What were the two or three most helpful things you learned?

Video Teaching

  • Who is God? (Freedom Church) To share your beliefs, you need to be able to clearly explain what you believe or who God is.  What explanations in this video will help you be able to share what you believe in a clearer way with others?

Web Resources

  • Christianity Explored One of the best resources for exploring questions and stories of real persons encountering questions of faith.

  • Articles (Christianity Today) on 18 different topics to assist in defending the Christian faith.

  • Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry--see this list of common objections to becoming a Christian with links for ways to address them.

  • Be Thinking gathers videos, podcasts and articles to help others make sense of the big questions of life from a Christian perspective.

  • Josh McDowell Ministries  Apologetics resources.

Reflection Options  

Journal  (Reflect on one or more of these questions)

  • When you are in a conversation with others about your faith are you more likely to feel a) angry that they are challenging your beliefs; b) Ashamed that you can’t defend your beliefs as well as you would like; c) scared that you will say something that will offend the other person; d) excited that you have the opportunity to talk about spiritual things; or e) other.  Journal about the one or ones you feel the most.

  • If you have had a particularly difficult conversation with someone defending your beliefs to someone, write about it.  What made it difficult? Read Matthew 5:3-11.  Then spend some time mourning, releasing that conversation to the Lord and praying for that person.

  • Ask God and two other people who know you well how you might grow in being able to defend your beliefs with grace, integrity and reason.  Spend time praying through their responses and come up with one to three goals for growth.

Quote Interaction  (Agree, disagree or otherwise engage with the quote/quotes)

  • The gospel does not need defending. If Jesus Christ is not alive and cannot fight His own battles, then Christianity is in a bad state. But He is alive, and we have only to preach His gospel in all its naked simplicity, and the power that goes with it will be the evidence of its divinity. (C.H. Spurgeon)

  • The greatest proof of Christianity for others is not how far a man can logically analyze his reasons for believing, but how far in practice he will stake his life on his belief. (T.S. Eliot)

  • Why do you need a voice when you have a verse. (Jim Elliot)

  • There is a conscience in man, therefore there is a God in Heaven. (Ezekiel Hopkins, 1634-1690)

Reading and reflection on Shaping The Journey of Emerging Adults

  • Read “Empower them with skills that are needed to pursue spiritual growth goals” (pp. 138, 139).  What kinds of skills do you feel you are lacking in being able to defend the faith to others? Are those skills intellectual, spiritual or relational in nature?  

  • Read “Challenge emerging adults to explore and resolve spiritual doubts” (p. 139). What doubts surface for you when you are in conversation with others about your faith?  Are you familiar with the stories of any of the persons listed in this section?  Look up the faith journey or the contribution to apologetics of one of these persons.  How was that helpful for you?

Explore Scripture

Meditate on one or more of the following passages. Always look them up in context.  Take some time to really explore the verse in relation to this topic.  What insights did you gain from these verses about defending your beliefs before others?  Make a note of what you discover to share later.  See "Learn More About Ways to Study Scripture" below for help in getting the most out of the verse.

  • Matthew 5:3-11

  • Luke 6:28-38

  • Acts 17:16-34

  • Corinthians 10:5

  • 2 Timothy 3:16-17

  • Titus 1:9

  • 1 Peter 3:15-16

  • I Peter 4:14

  • Jude 1:3