Austin Farrer on the proper role of apologetic arguments

Peter Leithart posted a good quote from Austin Farrer that I thought was worth reposting here. Commenting on C.S. Lewis’ apologetics Farrer said:

“though argument does not create conviction, the lack of it destroyed belief.  What seems to be proved may not be embraced; but what no one shows the ability to defend is quickly abandoned.  Rational argument does not create belief, but it maintains a climate in which belief may flourish.”

About Marc Cortez

Theology Prof and Dean at Western Seminary, husband, father, & blogger, who loves theology, church history, ministry, pop culture, books, and life in general.

Posted on May 26, 2010, in Apologetics and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. That quote is simply true! Consider two people who are arguing about whether or not the earth is round or flat. If you ask the individual who is adamant that the earth is round how he came to that particular conclusion, and all he says is, “Because it sounds good.” his argument is immediately dismissed. He may be right, but will not convince anyone if he cannot defend his position with a better argument than that. Call it rationalism or enlightenment, but people listen to passionate and reasonable defenses. Indifferent and illogical musings will get you written off. This one of the things that got the church in trouble in the 18th century. For so long they had gotten by with the, “b/c I’m the church leader and the bible says so” defense. When people began asking harder questions, the church hadn’t formulated thoughtful answers. This was especially noticeable with the advancements of science (need we mention Galileo).

  1. Pingback: Why I Haven’t Blogged…….and Why I’m Starting To « scientia et sapientia

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