Apologetics may be simply defined as the defense of the Christian faith. The word "apologetics" derives from the Greek word apologia, which was originally used as a speech of defense.

The Best Question to Ask When Starting a Conversation About God

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  • The Best Question to Ask When Starting a Conversation About God

    Ever found yourself looking for a way to initiate a conversation about God, but not sure exactly how to start? I’ve been in similar situations with people I don’t know (i.e. on airplanes, while waiting for a seat in a restaurant, or while watching a soccer game), and I’ve tried a number of approaches. I continue to return to one simple, effective question, however, to start the most important of all conversations. I’ve come to believe this is the most essential evangelistic question we can ask: “What do you think happens when we die?”

    This question can take a variety of forms (like, “Do you believe in life after death?” or, “What do you think about the afterlife?”), and it invariably leads to deeper conversations about the meaning of life, the existence of God and plight of humans. James Boccardo has done an excellent service to the Kingdom by writing about this approach extensively in a book called Unsilenced. I met James several years ago while speaking at a conference in North Carolina and I highly recommend his book. He provides a strategy for using this question and considers a number of possible objections you might hear from people with whom you are sharing. In my own experience with this simple approach, I’ve learned the value of, “What do you think happens after we die?”

    It’s Diagnostic
    This one question will immediately help you understand the worldview of the person with whom you are talking. It’s helpful to know where people are coming from, and every worldview has a distinctive answer to this question. When you ask it, you’ll almost immediately diagnose the worldview you are about to engage, without having to ask any overt questions about God’s existence.

    It’s Disarming
    Questions about the afterlife are often easier to ask than questions about God, even though the discussion of one inevitably leads to the discussion of the other. Many people have given thought to issues of life and earth, even though they haven’t seriously considered the existence of God. You’ll be surprised how many people are willing to talk about this question.

    It’s Directed
    In the end, the Good News of the Gospel is about Salvation; being saved from the future judgment of God we so deserve. While God certainly wants us to be transformed in this life, God’s offer of forgiveness through Jesus saves us from judgment in eternity. The question, “What do you think happens when we die?” is directed at the most important offer of the Gospel: forgiveness and eternal life.

    When I ask this initial question of non-believers, they inevitably provide answers in one of two categories. Some believe they will simply return to the dirt. When this is the case, I often talk about the existence and nature of the soul and our desire for justice and mercy. Some possess a vague, undefined belief in life after death (heaven or hell). When this is the case, I usually ask them how our final destination is determined (who gets to decide?). In either case, the question, ““What do you think happens when we die?” has been the gateway question that has helped me to diagnose worldview, engage inoffensively and direct discussions toward the most significant gift of the Gospel.

    Source: The Best Question to Ask When Starting a Conversation About God | Cold Case Christianity

  • #2
    religion is my favorite topic. I read about religion as well as participate in the discussion. I am a learner and I have more to listen than say. When I am reading religion, I just not read about Christianity but also about other religions. My interest in other religion is because I want to understand how special is Christianity in comparison to other religion. When I participate in the discussion I am always trying to convince myself about every thing explained in the theologies.
    When I want to start a conversation on religion, my first question is always "Where is God." Then I ask, what is the form of God, what is the aim of God? These questions can only be understood by a believer, rationalist will always confront.
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    • #3
      Originally posted by luri View Post
      When I want to start a conversation on religion, my first question is always "Where is God." Then I ask, what is the form of God, what is the aim of God? These questions can only be understood by a believer, rationalist will always confront.
      Hi Luri,

      Your questions should ultimately lead you away from "religion" to "theology". Religion is chiefly man centered whereas theology is God centered.

      Something to consider:

      Christforums is a theology forum rather than a Religious forum. Religion is chiefly the study of a certain kind of human behavior, be it under the rubric of anthropology, sociology, or psychology. The study of Theology, on the other hand, is the study of God. Religion is anthropocentric; theology is theocentric. The difference between religion and theology is ultimately the difference between God and man - hardly a small difference.

      Of course, this forum may often seem like a religious forum, namely because new converts seemingly focus on man's behavior rather than God (religion and politics). We are all at different stages of life in our conversion, take for example certain members which never dive into the depths of theological discussion and others that are tackling questions some have never even thought to of asked yet. It comes in waves, that is, our shift from religion to theology, but my point is that this board is designed with all its categories to support theology rather than religion.

      God bless,
      William
      Comment>

      • #4
        I always had this thought that theology is man created and religion is God created. Thanks for the clarification.
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