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'Be Ready' to Defend Faith
By R. Scott Lloyd
Church News staff writer
Church News staff writer
Published: Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2010
"There are some who turn up their noses at apologetics," Brother Peterson said, particularly critics of the LDS Church who say apologetics is not concerned with truth, is intrinsically dishonest and is not real scholarship.
"But this is a fundamental misunderstanding," he said. "Apologetics, like any other form of reasoning from evidence, can be either good or bad."
Socrates, Origen of Alexandria, Thomas Aquinas, John Locke and C S. Lewis are among historical figures he mentioned who belong to the "venerable" tradition of apologetics.
"What troubles me, though, is some faithful (LDS) members profess to disdain apologetics as well," he said. "This seems to me really misguided and not well thought out."
He added, "I think it is a duty incumbent upon all of us to 'apologize,' in the original sense, for our faith, and it's simply a human duty to 'apologize,' in that sense, for positions that you hold."
He cited 1 Peter 3:15, Paul's admonition to "be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear." The word translated in that passage as "answer" is the Greek word apologia, or apology, Brother Peterson said.
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"The cross of Jesus is the crux of human history, the deep revelation of the human condition. At this crossroads, the Bible uncovers the bloody corpse of a righteous man, and twisted and crucified corpse of the eternal Son of the living God.
Mocking God, killing righteous men – that is the human project. When a teacher comes with the demand that we do justice and love our neighbors, we betray Him, mock Him, beat Him on the head and crown Him with thorns, before we pack Him off to death on a cross. Naked and bleeding on the cross, Jesus suffers the fate of
, and of Jerusalem and Troy and Babylon and Carthage and of every city that has ever been razed to smoking rubble. The cross exposes us as specialists in destruction. We are specialists in destruction. History is a waste of ruins, toppled temples, smoldering cities, corpses heaped for burning. This is what we do. That is the human project." Dresden