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A 12 Week Course Studying What We Believe, and Why
If you're at all like I used to be, you may be intimidated by the secular culture, which views the Christian Faith as a blind leap and Christians as simple-minded and shallow.
Despite growing up in the faith, I always had hard questions, and slowly began to accept the secularist premise that I had to 'shut off my brain' as I went into church.
But instead of withdrawing or giving up, I began an in depth study of the field of Christian Apologetics - the Defenses of the Faith.
It was then that I discovered that there are many other Christians like me - some who were beginning to conclude that it's all just a 'blind leap' of faith.
There is quite a hunger for combining our spiritual aspect of life with our intellectual aspect - just like the Lord asked us to do:
"Love the Lord with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment."
Have you wanted to study these issues, but just didn't know where to begin?
Here at RenewYourMind.org, we've compiled a comprehensive overview of the Christian Faith - what we believe and why - to get you started on your way to a more mature Christian Faith, and to be prepared to answer and defend the attacks that are sure to come.
America is Becoming a Post-Christian Nation
"The great conflict of the 21st century will not be between the West and terrorism. Terrorism is a tactic, not a belief. The true battle will be between modern civilization and anti-modernists; between those who believe in the primacy of the individual and those who believe that human beings owe their allegiance and identity to a higher authority; between those who give priority to life in this world and those who believe that human life is mere preparation for an existence beyond life; between those who believe in science, reason, and logic and those who believe that truth is revealed through Scripture and religious dogma. Terrorism will disrupt and destroy lives. But terrorism itself is not the greatest danger we face."
Robert Reich The American Prospect; July 2004; pg 40
"Why Are You A Christian?"
The Lord told us:
"I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves."
The key is preparation and study - it is a part of our spiritual development and maturity. And this is precisely the goal of Renew-Your-Mind.org and Christian Apologetics 101 - to begin a study of what we believe and why, and get prepared for the questions.
Apologetics 101 is available to you in electronic form - in Microsoft PowerPoint for the teaching presentations, and a .pdf file for the student curriculum. The files are made available to you for immediate download.
Let's Look At What You'll Study
The study is arranged with the linear learning method in mind - the topics build upon each other, starting with an acknowledgement of the cultural attacks we can expect and culminating in why Christianity is the Only Rational Faith possible to answer our common spiritual dilemma.
Lesson One: Cultural Trends – We will understand that non-believers ‘think’ differently than believers, and that we must learn to understand the culture, so that we can influence the culture. We must not accept the ‘rules of engagement’ placed upon us by the culture, but we must understand how the culture views Christianity. We must learn to have a confident faith in Jesus.
Lesson Two: Apologetics Defined – The defense of the faith is a Biblical command. Christians must be prepared to explain what they believe and why they believe it, with gentleness and respect. There are ‘proofs’ given by God evident throughout the Bible. A mature and solid Faith is a living, breathing way of life, based upon warrant and choice.
Lesson Three: Internal Evidences – We can have reliable knowledge, internally. One of these internal knowledge items we have is our religions instinct—and it is universal. Our religious instinct causes us to look beyond ourselves and our world for answers. Christianity provides a Special Revelation that adequately answers the questions we seek from the General Revelation. Christianity confirms that God placed these desires inside us, so we would seek Him out.
Lesson Four: The Existence Of God – It is logical to believe in a Creator God; It is practical to believe in a Personal God; It is popular to believe in God; The alternative to belief in God is un-livable. The inevitable conclusion is: A Belief In God Is Warranted
Lesson Five: Evidences For The Bible – The Bible is unique among all ‘religious’ documents in all of history. It is heavily documented and very reliable. The Bible would pass legal requirement scrutiny. There are internal predictions and fulfillments that help prove its divine inspiration. All this evidence gives us warrant to accept what the Bible says as true.
Lesson Six: Jesus Christ – There is credible documentation of the world looking for a ‘messiah’ for over a thousand years. The criteria for recognizing this messiah are clear. Jesus of Nazareth fits these criteria perfectly. His resurrection is the most profound event in human history. Conclusion: Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ.
Lesson Seven: Christian Doctrine Overview – There are a few non-negotiable doctrines that are required for one to be included in traditional Christian Orthodoxy. However, there are many ‘intramural’ debates regarding Doctrinal issues. Therefore, a Christian must understand Christian Orthodox doctrine to know what to defend and proclaim, and to be obedient to our Lord.
Lesson Eight: Christianity Is Unique – Christianity is unique in its ‘direction’ (God pursuing man). We are saved by grace, through faith. Christian maturity is evidenced in obedience and love. A mature Christian will stand apart within the world. Summary: A Christian is free to obey out of thankfulness for Grace, instead of coerced to obey out of fear.
Lesson Nine: Comparisons To Other Worldviews – When either considering or contrasting different worldviews, one must understand the ‘essential requirements’. Many of the non-Christian worldviews are dis-similar to Christianity in common ways. Only Christianity provides a livable, non-compartmentalized worldview.
Lesson Ten: The Difficulty In ‘Not Believing’ – Christians should not assume that the Christian Worldview is the only Worldview subject to scrutiny. For example, the difficulties of the Naturalistic worldview are severe and fatal; however many people do not understand these irrationalities. In fact, when one considers all the questions, Christianity is the only faith system left standing!
Lesson Eleven: Evangelism – One of the main purposes of a study in Apologetics is to prepare the Christian for witness. There are many considerations to understand when witnessing, and many techniques to understand which will help the Christian utilize his personal gifts for the use of the Kingdom.Lesson Twelve: Humble Apologetics – While a Christian is required to provide a defense of the faith, she is required to project love and concern through humility and respect. A thorough understanding of the culture and its needs is necessary. Current event apologetics is one means of engaging our world with items of relevance and interest.
The Apologetics 101 curriculum is available to you in electronic form;
in Microsoft PowerPoint for the teaching presentations,
and a .pdf file for the student curriculum.
The files are made available to you for immediate download.
The Method of Study
Before each class, the participant will read a 4-5 page overview of the current week's material. Then, the leader will present a previously formatted PowerPoint presentation that builds upon the reading material - not merely reiterating what was read, but elaborating and expanding upon it.
Each week's lesson has a summary of the information provided, as well as thought provoking questions to ponder and to discuss in class. In addition, there is a wealth of recommendations, books and web-based, for further reference. Below is just an example of one of the reading curriculum, as well as an example of the PowerPoint presentation available (both examples in .pdf format - If you need a copy of the pdf application, you can download it free from the Adobe website here.)
Student Curriculum Sample
Teacher PowerPoint Sample
So - with this material, you do NOT need to be an expert apologist to lead the discussion.
The reading material gives a great summary overview of the information, and the Leader's PowerPoint Presentation helps lead the class discussion.
In addition, the Leader's PowerPoint Presentation provides a basic outline recommendation for class, and general talking points. Then, to prepare before or review after class, the recommended reference material is available on-line for further exploration. And to top off the learning experience, the on-line Dialogue Rooms are available to explore the thoughts of other students and leaders who are also taking or leading the class.
And of course, if you already have an idea of the basics of Christian Apologetics, these materials can be the launching off point for your own tailored class - just consider the materials a head-start (like having your preparation work already done for you!)
Answers to the TOP TEN Questions About The Christian Faith
All of us have had serious questions about the Faith.
We've included what we've experienced are the 'TOP TEN' Questions about Christianity.
Here they are:
God - Where did God come from?
The Trinity - Isn't the Trinity a contradiction?
Biblical Contradictions - Isn't the Bible invalid because it is full of contradictions?'
Hell - How could God send people to Hell for eternity?
Exclusivity - Aren't Christians arrogant and intolerant to claim that Christ is the only way to God?
Miracles - Can modern man believe in miracles?
Crutch - Isn't Christianity just a crutch for weak-minded people?
Heathen - What about those who never hear the gospel - are they lost forever?
Good Enough - Can't I make it to heaven if I'm just 'good enough?"
Problem of Evil - If God created everything, and evil exists, did He create it? Isn't this a logical problem for Christianity?
This package also comes as a PowerPoint file prepared for the class leader to present for discussion during class.
Our Mandate is Clear - Know Our Faith and Build the Kingdom!
The first step in a more confident and mature faith is trust in the Spirit, followed by a regimented program of education and study - this course sets the framework for just that, and enables the teacher to teach with proven and well documented materials. This way we carry on Paul's mandate from the Lord to relay the knowledge of the things of God and:
"...entrust to reliable men who will be qualified to teach others."
2 Timothy 2:2
So, finally, with Paul, we can:
"We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ"
2 Corinthians 10:5
The great Philosopher of Religion William Lane Craig described the task succinctly:
"We should know our subject profoundly and share it simply."
Watch William Lane Craig in Action - and Note His Humility, yet Incredible Grasp of the Subject:
Remember - Apologetics 101 is delivered to you in electronic form - in Microsoft PowerPoint for the teaching presentations, and a .pdf file for the student curriculum. The files are made available to you for immediate download.
Ordering Method and Curriculum Packages
Ordering is as simple as choosing which package you would like to order, clicking the associated link, providing your payment information, then downloading the selected files.
You'll have your files within minutes!
12 Week Apologetics 101 Curriculum
FREE: Top 10 Issues PowerPoints
12 Week Apologetics 101 Curriculum
12 Week Apologetics 101 PowerPoint
FREE: Top 10 Issues PowerPoints
As of September 1, 2017 over 2100 classes led, including over 20,000 students!
THANK YOU! "The most interesting and useful class we've had in Sunday School in years!"
"I've wondered about these issues for years, but was afraid to ask."
"I feel more confident sharing my faith..."
"This information is so relevant to the times, and so easy to understand."
"I'm looking forward to using these materials in my next class - I've already been asked to lead another one."
"Helped me to understand better why and how I need to stand up and defend my faith in God."
"Thought provoking and applicable to daily life.Thank you for untying my tongue!"
"Mike is the best teacher I've heard in years. He really knows how to explain subjects clearly and relate Theology to our daily lives. We can't wait to begin studying his Apologetics curriculum in our Church."
...for your interest in furthering the Kingdom of God by taking the responsibility to lead and teach!
May you and those you teach be truly blessed...
"And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God."
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