This transcript is taken from a Stand in the Gap Today program originally airing on 10/19/23. To listen to the program, please click HERE.
Sam Rohrer: Well, hello and welcome to this Thursday edition of Stand in the Gap today, and this is also our monthly creation and apologetics update. And though the unfolding events in the Middle East, that are consuming all the headlines, are leading the world right now to World War, to a broader war, and as I speak this, begin this program, there are things happening there that appear to be moving things towards that point.
But as I addressed yesterday on this program on our Israel prophecy and Middle East update, as God’s people, we can have confidence and unswerving hope that no matter what comes, the Lord has given to us in his written word exactly what we need for the day, and for tomorrow and for all eternity. Praise the Lord.
Now, in God’s word, beginning in Genesis with “In the beginning God created,” to the very last words of the book of Revelation which says this, “and if any man shall take away from the words of this book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life and out of the Holy City. And from the things which are written in this book, he who testifies to these things says, ‘Surely, I come quickly. Amen.’ Even so, come, Lord Jesus.”
Now, that’s the ending of Revelation, and the fact that between Genesis 1 and Revelation 22, God has given us his complete plan of redemption, his plan for the nations, everything we need to know about the first and the second coming of Jesus Christ, his plan for his chosen people, the Jews, his chosen nation, Israel, his chosen city, Jerusalem, and his plan for concluding this time of the Gentiles in which we sit now, as recorded by Luke. Talks about the rapture of the church as spoken so clearly by the Apostle Paul and others.
All of God’s people, all who are led and his people by faith in Jesus Christ alone have the complete word of God in our hands. Wow. And this word is profitable, we know for doctrine, for proof, for instruction, in righteousness or holy living, and it’s all ours, all being breathed out by the Holy Spirit. It is true. And it’s this fact, this confidence of what God has done, what he’s written and will yet do that is the foundation for what we refer to in our theme for today, apologetics.
And it’s this theme which is so important, and sadly, misunderstood, that our theme today will focus on, our conversation. It’ll be Bryan Osborne and myself. Bryan has been on here before, he is author, conference speaker and Christian apologist for answers in Genesis. The title I’ve chosen is this, Apologetics, the Why, the How, and the Who. And with that, I welcome in right now, Bryan Osborne. Bryan, thanks for being back with me today.
Bryan Osborne: Sam, as always, good to be with you. Glad to hear your voice is strong and glad to talk with you.
Sam Rohrer: I am glad that it is as well. And I tell you, for all of us who use our voice when it disappears, it does hamstring, but the Lord has all these things in control though. Bryan, let’s get going here because a prime emphasis of answers in Genesis and a topic on which you speak a great deal, we emphasize here regularly on Stand in the Gap Radio and TV, is what we refer to as apologetics, apologetic. So, to get us started, let’s do this, as we often do, would you define apologetics? Frame that word, what is it?
Bryan Osborne: Yeah, absolutely. And let me say this too, I think this is a great time to talk about apologetics because we’re coming into the holiday season and we have those dinner table possible conversations with people who may disagree with us, those possible awkward conversations and those interactions, maybe with a family member you see rarely. And so, it’d be a good time to remind us that hey, what it is, and how to do it as we engage people in a real way in the real world.
And really, in short, apologetics, it means to give a defense, to give an answer for your faith. Now, it comes from a Greek word we find over at 1 Peter 3:15, when we are told to be prepared to give a defense or an answer. It’s from a Greek word apologia, pronounced different ways, but that’s the basic Greek word. And the Greek word has the idea of a lawyer in a courtroom defending what he believes and why, so it’s giving a good authoritative legal defense of your position.
And so, we as Christians, we’ve been called in multiple places, like 1 Peter 3:15, to give a defense to give that defense of the faith. And really, to break it down, it’s really just knowing what you believe and why and being able to tell someone, right? “Here’s what I believe, why I believe it, and sharing it in a clear God glorifying way.” In many cases, apologetics is just clarifying what the Bible actually teaches.
Sam Rohrer: All right, that’s fantastic. And that’s simple, Bryan, and in the balance of the program we’re going to take and build that out, and that’s why I use these terms of what, that’s what we’re doing right now, defining, what are we talking about? There’s a why there’s a how, there’s a who, there’s a focus of all of this, but in simple terms, you’ve already kind of alluded to it and that’s certainly what Peter talks about. But again, in modern parlance, if you put it that way, what is the value of apologetics?
And this question, why should all true believers be well-versed in the knowledge and the application of apologetics? It kind of takes us to the why a little bit, but why is it important? We know what it is, but why is it important for all true believers to be well-versed in this thing we call apologetics?
Bryan Osborne: Yeah, absolutely. So, as we understand what we believe and why, we can communicate that to people more effectively and actually explain to them the Christian position on various issues, whether they’re talking about origins or sexuality or even how you view events in the Middle East and giving a biblical understanding of those sorts of things. So, if we understand what we believe and why, then we can communicate that more clearly rooted in God’s word and be a better effective witness to those people by standing on God’s word and proclaiming that it’s truth.
And so it has wonderful application in that. And also, Sam, here’s the deal. When you are ready for apologetics, you know how to defend your faith, it actually firms up your faith. When you know what you believe and why, you are more rooted in God’s word, you have a more powerful biblical worldview and you’re more confident in your position and your ability to communicate to people, so that confidence can be a great bolster to you to living out more obediently God’s command to you, to be a witness of Christ.
And Sam, that’s the biggest reason that we must do apologetics, is that God has told us to. 1 Peter 3:15, it’s to believers, that we are to set apart Christ as Lord, as holy, and always be prepared to give a defense and answer to everyone who ask you for the reason, for the hope that is in you. If you go to Jude chapter one, there’s only one, right? But you start over at verses one through three. And at the beginning of Jude it says this, he’s writing to those who are called, sanctified by God the Father and preserved in Jesus Christ, so that’s his audience. He’s writing to believers.
What’s he telling them in verse three, he says, “I wanted to write to you about salvation, our common salvation, but I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you, believer, to contend earnestly for the faith.” And so, we are commanded by God to do so. It’s beneficial to us and of course it’s beneficial to those around us who get to hear the truth of God’s word and hopefully God changes their lives through that.
Sam Rohrer: All right, amen. That’s really well stated and succinct, ladies and gentlemen, it is necessary for us as believers to understand what this is, to perform our duty as a child of God, as a communicator of the gospel, as an ambassador of Jesus Christ. No matter how you look at it, we need to know about this thing. When we come back, we’re going to talk about apologetics, the why, and the how.
Sam Rohrer: Well as in all aspects of life and truth there is the what. Now, our theme today is about apologetics. My special guest is Bryan Osborne. He is with answers in Genesis, and in the last segment we defined apologetics. In simple terms, apologetics is reasoned arguments or writings and justification of something, typically a theory or a religious doctrine.
Now, with the what though, is also the why, the purpose, and we talked a little bit about that on the other side, why believers, true believers in Jesus Christ, should understand and be able to articulate what makes up and comprises what we call apologetic, how to make those reasoned arguments to those who would want to know the truth or should know the truth.
Now, how that justification and reasoned argument is presented is another part, and it can widely vary how we do that and why, when it comes to biblical truth, wisdom and certainly the leading of the Holy Spirit, which is essential, since the acknowledgement or the identification of truth in anybody’s life, God’s word, what is in God’s word, truth, we know it to be spiritually discerned, and not everybody understands the truth, and it requires the work of the Holy Spirit to communicate that and apply it.
So, those things being said, Bryan, let’s go back. Let’s take the concept now of apologetics, which can relate, frankly, to anyone in any belief and narrow it down to now, the true believer, that’s where you started, we went to Peter about answering those who would ask us a question, so we’re going to hone in here now. We’re talking about the believer, those who know what God’s word is, and here’s the question, why is it essential for a professing Christian to know what they believe, why they believe it, and again, you’ve said it again, but outline that once more? This is the purpose part, why is it so important?
Bryan Osborne: Yeah, absolutely, Sam. So, just to harken back, I just wanted to say harken, by the way, but to harken back to what we said before the break, and that is, number one, we do it because God told us to. To be obedient to our God. That is, of course, primary.
But right with that, and underneath that as a sub point is also this truth, and that is, you may have heard the saying, “If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything.” And if I can modify that, if we don’t stand on the foundation of the rock that is God’s word, then you can fall for any lie of the enemy. And so, we must know what we believe and why rooted in God’s word. And we’ve been called to defend the faith, but then, how can you defend the faith that you don’t know if you don’t really know what you believe and what are you defending?
And actually, if you look around, it’s sad and interesting, there are so many Christians who are believing and defending absolutely unbiblical ideas because either they’re ignorant of the Scriptures or have chosen to try to rebel and somehow compromise them. And so, to be true to God’s word, to bring glory to Him to the utmost, as we are obedient to his command, then we must know what we believe and why.
That means we go to God’s word, that we study God’s word, not just to have answers, to fill our heads with knowledge. Of course, our goal is to know Christ and to draw close to him and to glorify him, but then to proclaim this truth to the world around us. And so, to do that, we must know it. And Sam, the Bible’s our source for truth, and so, if we want to know what is the right answer about origins, what is the right answer about sexuality and gender? What is the right answer about the critical race theory ideology floating around in our culture, what is the right response?
Well, if we go to God’s word and it tells us what truth is, and then here’s what we do, we compare his truth with the counterfeit of the enemy. And when you know God’s truth, then the lies stand out. I’m sure you’ve heard the example of people who identify the false $100 bills, the counterfeit $100 dollars bills, they study the real one so well that when they see a fake one, the details of the fake ones stand out because they know the real one that well.
And in a real sense, we need to know what we believe so well, that when we hear the lies of the enemy, then they will stick out to us and then we can compare, “Okay, you’re saying this, but God’s word says this.” That’s something I’ll say now, I’ll probably say it a couple more times, and that is, we need to point that out to people that either they’re trusting God’s word or they’re trusting man’s ideas. Those are your two foundational religions on any issue. Either God’s word is your authority and you’re submitting to that, or man’s word is. And so that’s where we got to raise up, and we must know what we believe and why in order to share that to people.
Sam Rohrer: Okay, that is excellent. And Bryan, as we’re talking about this, ladies and gentlemen, you’re listening, you’ve heard this, no doubt, as well. There’s a big difference when it comes to matters of truth. That’s what we’re talking about, biblical truth. That’s the distinction between what a Christian is, what the word of God is all about, and everything else that is not consistent with God says, and not consistent with what the Bible says. That’s what Bryan’s just saying, there’s only two, there’s truth and then there’s lies. There are truth and deception. There’s not multiple truths, one truth, God’s word.
And Bryan, it makes me think of this as well, that there’s a big difference between knowing about Jesus and knowing Jesus as a personal savior. There’s a big difference between knowing about God and knowing God personally. There’s a big difference between knowing about the Bible intellectually and knowing the Bible truth because we’ve taken it within us and so forth, so that’s what we’re talking about. Ladies and gentlemen, there’s a difference there, and so, let’s go further on this, Bryan.
Many times believers, I’ve run into many, and so have you, who really want to share the gospel, they may have people that they’ve been praying for, but they get hung up when it comes to actually sharing and actually talking about what they believe and that’s the how part. So, you say you’ve got to learn what you believe and then you can express it, but here’s the question and that is this. How does a person effectively relate what they believe? It’s the word of God, they know they’re saved, they’re going there and they want to share that. How do they share that? So, lay that out, if you don’t mind. How can one do that? Address some of the fears that many people have, that keeps them from articulating the truth of God’s word.
Bryan Osborne: Yeah, absolutely. And let me just say this in reference to what you said a second ago, you’re right, the whole point of engaging people is to share the gospel. That’s the point of apologetics by the way. We’re not trying to win an argument, we’re trying to proclaim truth that people might get saved. We’re defending biblical authority to proclaim the gospel that people might get saved and that’s our heartbeat in this. Not winning arguments, give good answers, of course, but to get to the gospel.
And how do we do that? People can do it in so many different ways, but we need to understand as we engage people, apologetics is very oftentimes, it’s a conversation, not a presentation. And so, in my line of work, I get to stand on the stage a whole lot and just speak the whole time and give a good outline, but when you have one-on-one conversations, it’s rare they’ll pause and say, “Okay, get out your keynote presentation and show me slide by slide.” No, you’re going to go back and forth, and understanding that a great way to engage someone is to ask them questions as you engage on this issue and asking someone questions, it has so many benefits.
Now, I’m not saying you answer every question of theirs with a question of your own, but you can do it oftentimes, it’s a helpful tool. But asking questions can help you give you time to think, so you ask them a question about what they believe and they’re giving their answer. You can take a breath, you can relax, you can think you can get composure because if you’re at the dinner table at Thanksgiving and Uncle Bob says something pretty unbiblical and challenging your worldview directly, those emotions rise up, you get kind of nervous, butterflies in your stomach, you’re like, “What do I do?” So, asking a question in response can give you time to gather yourself, be composed, and even pray, but we listen well.
And then, as people answer those questions, we can begin to see what they actually really do believe. We can actually see how what they believe is in contradiction to the word of God if they really express what it is. We can see their motives and the authority they’re appealing to. If they’re not appealing to God’s word, they’re appealing to man’s word, thus their ideas are ultimately arbitrary in their own worldview. And then what we can do after asking questions, we get a good idea of what they actually believe, and then we can compare what they believe to scripture, because the battle’s not my opinion versus yours, who cares what I think? The battle is what you’re saying versus what God says.
And when you hold that up to them, it helps take the tension away from you and that person, it puts it between them and God, which is where it really needs to be. And then we’re going to God’s word, which we know, Sam, is alive and active and powerful and sharpen any two-edged sword. And it’s God’s word, through his Spirit, that he works in their hearts and changes their mind and transforms them from the inside out. And so, asking questions is a great way to, again, get a deep breath, pray, learn what they believe, and then compare what they believe to God’s word. Use God’s word as that light to shine into them that God may use to transform them.
Sam Rohrer: Yeah, excellent. And a couple of things I think of in regard to what you’re saying there in this last little bit of the program, is that conversation, not presentation, and the goal for a believer is not to think, ladies and gentlemen, in terms of a debate, a battle that we’ve got to win, because at the end of the day, it’s not the eloquence of our speech that brings a person from darkness to light, it’s the Holy Spirit who can take right words, yes, absolutely, but it’s the Holy Spirit that takes the truth of God’s word. That’s where the power is. It’s not the words you and I say or the way we put phrases together or clever sounding sentences that bring somebody to the point of recognizing that they don’t have the answers they thought they had, that God’s word does.
It’s the power of the Holy Spirit through the quoting of scripture. Scripture, that’s where the power is. When I learned that years ago, it really helped me, and I hope that and our conversation, helps all of you who are thinking right now, it’s not a matter that you learn a lot of tricks of the trade and relaying what you think, it’s that you believe Jesus Christ, the word of God, truth of God’s word, and be willing to express it in some of these techniques like asking questions and listening to people. Very, very effective. Okay, when we come back. I’m going to delve a little bit more into the purpose or the who, the focus. We’ve already talked about it, but the focus of apologetics.
Well, if you’re just joining us, now, we’re midway right here in the program today, this is our monthly creation and apologetics update focus. We do this once a month, almost always it’s somebody with answers in Genesis generally, but there’s about three different individuals there. Today’s Bryan Osborne, he’s an author, he’s a speaker and a conference speaker on these matters, talking today about apologetics and the why of it. We defined it, the why of it, is we as believers need to know what we believe and then we know how to present it.
But ultimately, not relying on ourself for how smart we are or how clever we are in what we say, but just simply to relate what we know, what we believe, so we have to know what we believe and we have to have that person, Jesus Christ, living within us, so it starts with being truly born again and then believing what the Bible says and then acting upon it. And when that does, then things begin to happen and we can effectively defend the word of God and what we believe.
Now, for the unbelieving and the God rejecting person with unbiblical concepts of life and creation, God, good and evil, these are often quite effective. These people that are around us in the culture, they can be very effective at using their techniques of apologetics, defending what they believe to persuade others to move away from the truth, which then always means leading them into some area of deception. And when that is the case, then as the scripture says, if it’s not the truth, then it’s a lie of the devil. It’s that simple.
Now, we see this increasingly being done as God and truth in our culture is rejecting biblical truth. And increasingly, we look like what’s described in Romans chapter one, having the truth, knowing the truth, but walking away from it. So, whether it be the cultural move to the redefining of marriage, we see that all around us, or human sexuality, certainly see that all around us, or right and wrong or the fundamental definition of justice or the purpose for government or even the meaning of the true gospel, which we have all kind of variations of false gospel today, we’re confronted daily with the effects of a well strategized and effective use of apologetics of deception, I’m going to put it that way. But that’s not what we’re talking about, we’re talking about the apologetics in effective communication of truth.
Bryan, we’re talking about the understanding and effective use of apologetics or the making of reasoned arguments for truth as contained in God’s word, expressing what God says is true and important. And we’ve defined the what, talked a bit about the why and the how, now let’s move to the who. Again, we’ve already talked about it, but this gets right to the core of it. For the believer it’s really all about the who, isn’t it? I want you to take and build this out more. Build out what now, we did the why and the how, but the who, bear down on the who and why this must be kept front and center for any of us who want to effectively use apologetics.
Bryan Osborne: Yeah, so in talking about the who, I’m thinking of two different who’s in my head. The first who is, who needs to be doing this for believers, and that’s every Christian, every single one of us is called to be an apologist. We’re called to be missionaries. We’re called to be salt and light. And I think amongst many Christians, there’s this false notion that doing apologetics, doing evangelism, doing street evangelism, having hard conversations, that’s for the super elite Christians, that’s for the Chuck Norris Christians, those who have had special training and they can come in and take out five demons with a toothpick and they’re super. And no, that’s just not the case, it’s actually, no one’s really going to be like that anyway, of course I’m exaggerating, but it’s for every Christian. We’ve all been called to give an answer. We’ve all been called to contend for the faith to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ.
That’s a mantle that has been laid on all of us as believers in Christ. We pick up our cross daily and follow after Christ. And so, we’re all commanded to do so, so all should be engaged, and then, who this is for is the other who I’m thinking of. Who is this for? And this is for, of course, to encourage the believer in their faith, but also, it is for the nonbeliever. And as we said earlier, we are not simply trying to dismantle their worldview, although we are going to go about doing that. The goal is to show them that they have enough foundation for their thinking, that God’s word is the only right source for truth and actually is the only right source for life, and it’s right about eternity and salvation found in Christ alone.
And so, we defend biblical authority on any given issue, proclaim the gospel to see people get saved. And I say all the time, apologetics and evangelism are two sides of the same coin. We give a defense to proclaim the gospel. We give answers to proclaim the answer of Jesus Christ. And so, it’s for all believers and we give it to all non-believers in different ways, out of love, that they might get saved by God’s will and his grace.
Sam Rohrer: Okay, so I hear what you’re saying and agree with it. On one hand, apologetics can actually act in an offensive fashion. The sharing of the gospel effectively, the communication of the gospel, evangelism as you put it, that’s more on the, we’re going to go to those who do not know, and therefore apologetics expression of the truth is in that fact.
Paul, when he went to Mars’ Hill reasoned with them, that would be apologetics on the offensive side. But on the other side, Peter, like you talked about, “Be ready to give an defense to those who come to you.” At points, that would be a defensive thing as well, so there are two sides of that, isn’t there?
Bryan Osborne: No, absolutely. But actually, I just kind of thought about this, you’ll deal with both those, with both believers and non-believers, of course, because non-believers don’t believe the Bible, so they’ll have those conflicts. But also, there are many compromised believers who embrace a secular view of sexuality or gender or origin, they have compromised views. As we engage them, we’re engaging apologetics as well. And actually, the source and the answer is the same. We go to scripture, we take them to the text.
Sam Rohrer: Okay. And so, we go to there, that’s the truth, that’s what we’re all about. Let’s go here. You talked about for everybody. That, I think, is really an important concept. Most listening to this program right now, Bryan, would be adults, many of them have had a long walk with the Lord as an example. But when it comes to defending one’s faith, it is not at all limited to adults, but it can also be effectively communicated by children if they know the truth, can’t they?
Bryan Osborne: No, absolutely. I mean, if we, as parents and grandparents, are doing what we’ve been called to do well, we’re raising our kids in the fear and admonition of the Lord, and rooted in God’s word and they know God’s word, and as they’re proclaiming the principles of God’s word or even quoting Bible verses like from [inaudible 00:28:06] and stuff like that, they can be proclaiming truth and be a witness to the kids around them or even to the adults around them, in some cases, depending on what’s happening, or where they go to school or stuff like that. And so, absolutely kids can be a witness.
And depending on the age of the kids, those arguments and the understanding can be more complicated or more simple, but yes, absolutely they can and should be.
Sam Rohrer: And ladies and gentlemen, and Bryan, I was just thinking of this. Last night in our life group, we were talking about a couple of applications of it, and one of them was thinking of the individuals of Joseph and Daniel, so I think of them, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and Daniel. Probably, most would believe that they’re probably around 12 or 13 maybe. Joseph, when he went into Egypt sold was probably maybe 16, but as very young children, they defended their faith in God wisely. And they did a man’s, a yeoman’s job, as a young child.
And I often put that out there as a challenge for all of us who are listening now, grandparents, that our grandchildren, they can actually live boldly, articulate their faith boldly, and it can happen, but we need to be teaching them early. That’s what a Christian education really is all about, isn’t it, Bryan?
Bryan Osborne: It is. And it’s so amazing, oftentimes, we expect big things from kids in other subjects. We want to challenge them to learn hard concepts in math and science and learn big words, and even when they’re young, we still want to challenge them. We expect much of them, but somehow, oftentimes when it comes to scripture, we think, “Oh, well, they can’t handle these big theological ideas or these big biblical words.” Oftentimes they can handle a whole lot more than we think they can. And if we’re going to challenge them on anything, man, shouldn’t it be scripture and God’s word and pouring that into them?
And I’m telling you what, and you know this, Sam, if you look around the world we live in today, you better know what you believe and why if you want to stand firm and the hostility that we are living in here and around the world, it’s against the Christian worldview and our kids are growing up in that front and center. We need to be pouring into them God’s word, which is the foundation for the defense of the faith and the gospel of Jesus Christ, so they can indeed stand and be salt and light, and not get swept away like so many have over the past generations.
Sam Rohrer: That is so very true. And I think where you say there’s something, Bryan, that was a good point, we expect significant things from them if we have them as children playing on a young football team, as an example, or academic award winner on this, whatever, but we do not expect as significant things for them in their Christian life, so ladies and gentlemen, that’s a challenge for all of us. Again, most listening, you’re parents, I know many listening to this program who, you may be picking up your kids at school right now, you may be dropping them off.
Moms and dads, grandparents, we have children, we have grandchildren, I have 17 grandchildren. They can do a whole lot more if we build into them the word of God. And by so doing, they learn apologetics because they know what they believe and when confronted, they can stand, even as a kid, they can stand. When we come back, Bryan and I are going to take and make application of apologetics to something that’s actually happening right now, as we speak, in the Middle East. You’ll see apologetics applied to what’s happening in the Middle East, you’ll hear it in just a moment, we’ll be back.
Sam Rohrer: Well, before we go into our final segment now, and I’m going to ask Bryan to make some application to this matter of apologetics, which we’ve tried to work and come at from a number of angles, and make application to something that we’re actually seeing right now occur in the Middle East in Israel. And you’re thinking, what are we talking about? Well, you’ll find in just a moment.
But before we get there, just want to remind all of those of you who are listening to us right now, particularly those who are able to drive a couple of hours that could join us on November the 14th for our 10th anniversary, Forging Ahead Celebration. It’s going to be here in southeast Pennsylvania, it’s only a few miles from our studio where I’m sitting here right now. It’s right off the Pennsylvania Turnpike on Morgantown exit. It’s very close, and we would invite you to come.
George Barna is going to be a guest. I’m going to be talking to George. I’m going to be asking him some personal questions and you’ll find out some very interesting information. The honorable Michelle Bachman will also be with us, and it’s an evening for all who are listening. Now, there’ll be pastors, there’ll be wives of them, there’ll be many, many listeners, those who watch TV, we want you all to come. There’ll be special music. It’s going to give great glory to God for what he’s done and I believe that you will leave greatly encouraged. It is for you. It is for you. Join us together as we lift our hands in gratefulness to the God of heaven, who alone is from whom all blessings flow, right?
So, I want you to do that, our website, and you can go to any of our websites, standinthegapradio.com, standinthegapmedia.org, any of those, americanpastorsnetwork.net, any of those you will find there a place that you can get more information, 6:30, November the 14th, Southeast Pennsylvania. Here, you’ll find all the information, but we’re encouraging you to take and sign up to reserve your seat. That’s for a number of reasons. We want to know who’s coming, be able to get ahold of you if we need to. It’s also just for a lot of other planning purposes, but we’d like to be able to do that. Please take this as a special invitation.
All right, Bryan, let’s go back into this, practical application. In Israel right now, we have all watched this demonic attack against Israel, precipitated by a people and a philosophy that rejects the Bible, rejects Jesus Christ, rejects the truth of God’s word. It’s embodied at the moment by the recent attacks by Hamas. But we know that mentality is also embraced by Marxists, by communists, by Islamic teachings. It’s the teachings of the Quran. So, take what we’ve been talking about and apply biblical apologetics for such an example to the underlying Marxist, I’m going to put down critical theory ideology, which is what it is, which is driving this demonic celebration of Hamas. Put some of this together here. Could you do that please?
Bryan Osborne: Yeah, absolutely. Your listeners probably already know this, but I think the actual day of the attack, October 7th, there was a group of 30, 31 student groups over in Harvard who signed a statement that held Israel solely responsible for the violence taking place. They held Israel responsible for the massacre that had just happened to them by this demonic influence, Hamas coming in, they hold Israel responsible. They said this, “We, the undersigned student organizations hold the Israel regime entirely responsible for all unfolding violence. The apartheid regime is the only one to blame.”
And so, they go on to say Israeli violence has structured every aspect of Palestinian existence for 75 years, and it’s left a systematized, basically oppression over the Palestinians, is what they would argue. But for many of us, we saw that, and we heard that, if you hear it for the first time now, I think how could they blame Israel? And that is, it’s so wrong. How could they even think this is something that you should do, not only privately, but publicly? They made a statement, day of, and they expected this to be, I guess, applauded, or at least acceptable to society.
Now, there was a lot of backlash, praise God for that, but where’s this ideology coming from? Well, as you alluded to already, Sam, it’s coming from what we call critical theory, which has a lot of variations. You get critical class theory, critical race theory, you might call this one critical occupation theory, I don’t know, but a lot of variations of that. But critical theory’s just a new form of Marxism. And this ideology of Marxism has flooded our education systems over the past few decades, generations actually, especially higher academia. And basically, it’s been taught as a worldview, as truth, that’s totally counter to the biblical worldview. We’ve had generations of kids who have grown up, they’ve been taught that really, this is the right way to view the world.
And this neo Marxism, this critical theory says this, that all of society is made up of oppressors and the oppressed, and that’s it. And if you’re an oppressor, you’re evil, you’re bad, you’re the only wrong. And if you’re the oppressed, well, you’re the victim no matter what, you’re the victim and basically you should do whatever you need to do to overcome your oppression, to win your freedoms and your rights and so forth. And so, we’ve had whole generations brought up in this anti-biblical ideology because the Bible says no, you’re not identified by your oppressor or oppressed status, you’re identified as a child of God, or you’re identified as an image bearer of God, you’re made in God’s image, and then your identified either as someone who, as a child of God, who embraces God’s word or someone walking in the dark who rejects God’s word.
And you’re not defined guilty or innocent based on your skin shade, which might put you in an oppressor class or based on where you live, you’re defined as get your innocence based on your response to God and his word. And so, they have these totally unbiblical categories, and they’ve been taught this now for generations, and get this, in the critical theory, Marxist ideology, it says that people in our culture today, any minority, they’ve been oppressed, therefore they’re part of the oppressed class.
The oppressors in the American culture are mainly white heterosexual males because they’re the privileged and they have the power, but they’d also argue that sexual minorities, like anybody who’s not heterosexual, are part of the oppressed class, they’re being oppressed because they’re a sexual minority. And then, how this translate over to the Middle East conflict is that those who embrace this ideology, they look at Israel as the oppressor. They’re occupying the land that should be the Palestinians. They are oppressing the Palestinians, therefore, in this thinking, Palestinians have the right to do whatever they need to do to get rid of the suppression, to have equity in this situation.
And so, when you start to understand where the thinking comes from, you can start to see how they made the statement. Now, of course, it doesn’t make it any less demonic or just heinous, it’s an awful statement, but we can start to see where the thinking comes from and why is this thinking gained such ground in our culture? And Sam, I’d argue it’s because for so many Christians, we have not been trained on how to defend the faith. We’ve not been trained to look at the world around us, to compare ideas to the word of God and say, “Okay, if you don’t line up with the word of God, this is wrong. I esteem God’s word, it’s my rock, not man’s ideas.”
And even many Christians, we’ve just given our kids over to a secular system, a secular school system, and just handed them over. They’ve been trained in this ideology from the ground up. And so, even many kids who grow up in a Christian home basically been indoctrinated with this ideology, and they’ve not been trained how to combat it from a biblical worldview. They just haven’t. And so, of course, they’ve embraced it. As one famous preacher likes to say, “We’ve sent our kids to Caesar and they come out Roman.” Well, not a surprise.
And so, it points to the need for apologetics. And as we engage people in this conversation, we can talk to them, “Okay, well why do you believe that Hamas was justified in this? Where does that come from?” And they start to express their beliefs about oppressor versus oppressed, the whole paradigm. And then we say, “Well, okay, but that’s man’s ideas, which man has lots of opinions, how do you know which one’s right, so they’re arbitrary, but God’s word says this.” Take them back to the Bible, and then we use that to get to the gospel, which is what they really need to get saved.
Sam Rohrer: There you go, Bryan, and we’re out of time, but thank you so much for being on. Ladies and gentlemen, see, when we calibrate our thinking according to what God says in God’s word, there’s no disagreement, there’s no division. It’s when we do not embrace the truth of God’s word, that there is division. And see, that’s what apologetics is all about, the truth, taking us to a person, to Jesus Christ, the way, the truth, and the life.