Specifically, those who refuse to "approve" of God's revealed proofs are themselves "without excuse" for disapproving God's proof.Accordingly, apologetics must be realistic in balancing the presentation of proof with the predisposition of unpersuaded humans to suppress or reject that truth.Therefore, unless and until this inexcusable rejection of God is somehow remedied, humans automatically receive a terrible consequence called a "reprobate mind" (Romans ). Consider this question: What is the highest motive for the ministry of apologetics?A "reprobate" mind malfunctions when it evaluates true vs. Apologetics is more about honoring God than winning an argument.Scripturally speaking, the main purpose of apologetics is not to "win a case" like a litigator, because the "jury" may be hopelessly corrupt or distracted.
A failure to appreciate the context of Scripture routinely produces interpretive failure.In 1990, a graduate student from communist China--raised on atheistic evolution--asked me the following question: "Why should I believe in the Bible God, the Bible is true, and God is fair, when China was never given Bible truth about God to believe?" Simply put, this young man was asking: "Why should I believe in your Bible's God? " Noah Webster, in 1828, defined "apologetic" as "defending by words or arguments," tracing this English word back to the Greek apologetics?These principles are critical, because the practice of inadequate apologetics flows from a reliance on inadequate principles. Apologetics, at the human level, must also "know its audience." Consider the following quote: "Wow! " To a kindergartner, who is trying to act big, it's a compliment.Yet to the kindergartner's mother, who is thirty-something, it's no compliment! In apologetics, as in all communication, it is critical to answer the question: Who is my audience? Apologetic communications, whether written or oral, can involve more than one audience.