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Finding Balance and Respect in Christian Apologetics

Dr. Andy Bannister, lead apologist for Ravi Zacharias International Ministries Canada, did his Ph.D. in Islamic Studies for 11 years. He grew up in a Christian home and have never really been forced to think through the foundations of his faith until he began to evangelize on the streets of London.

That was when Dr. Bannister discovered that the Muslims knew more about Christianity than he did. He couldn't answer many of the questions thrown at him. So it sparked his desire to dig deep and search for the answers.

Rather than simply saying that Islam is wrong and Christianity is right, Andy wanted to put in the effort and time to show them his respect for their views. Studying about the Islamic religion at length definitely helped with that. When one understands/studied different religions, one can address it in a meaningful way.


Only Christianity is True

Many non-believers tend to cover a viewpoint that Christians are arrogant and narrow-minded because we only claim that Christianity is true and deemed all other religions as false. In such cases, Andy suggests that we can gently turn the conversation around and ask them what other religions have they studied about.

Usually the answer is, "None of them".

Having studied about the Islamic religion for 11 years, Dr. Bannister can say, convincingly, that he knows for a fact that the Islamic religion is fundamentally different from Christianity.

By making such a point, Andy is actually being respectful to the other religions. If he had said or agreed that all religions have the same beliefs, then he can jolly well not listen to the viewpoints of other religions since there are no differences.

"You have your Truth and I have mine…"

The problem in the Western culture is that we have elevated "tolerance" as the highest virtue. It sounds "sophisticated" when you say that everyone has their own version of truth.

The trouble is, every truth statement is exclusive.

The only way to include everyone is actually to say nothing at all. Once you make a certain statement, you will be excluding those who does not think that way.


You can go to www.rzim.org for more information on Ravi Zacharias International Ministry or for more resources. 


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