Tying It All Together
Hopefully the tools and strategies given so far are useful. A question that often arises is, “When I meet someone, they are a blend of all these things. They have deep personal objections, as well as intellectual objections, and some ignorance too. How do I unravel the knot?”
To start with, it should be said that a sound grip of theology and apologetics is very helpful. Those two topics are inclusive of most of the questions that anyone would ask. Great Christian thinkers and scholars have been wrestling with the hard questions non-believers ask for centuries. We can learn much to equip ourselves to engage these discussions too.
But, in the end, theology and apologetics have limitations. They cannot change a man’s heart, nor unravel its knots. Certainly they can change what a man thinks or believes, but the person or thing that man worships in his heart and the objections and barriers that hold him back is a matter between him and God. Recognizing this limitation gives us great freedom to get about our business of giving answers for our hope, not trying to convince people we are right or figure out everyone’s problems and motives.
The sovereignty of God cannot be ignored when we deal with objections to the Gospel. When we rely on the Lord to transform someone’s life, we are free from failure. If we conduct ourselves with gentleness and respect, and represent our Master well, He is glorified and we have served Him faithfully. He is powerful enough to untangle the human heart. He is powerful enough to strike down an objection. He is powerful enough to convict of sin. He is powerful enough to illuminate the truth in a person’s life and lead them to Jesus. We should be glad those things don’t fall on our shoulders!
If God is sovereign and powerful to do those things, why should we try to do them without Him? Or, why should we represent Him in any manner other than what He calls us to, with gentleness and respect?
So it falls to us to bear witness to Christ and His resurrection, and to learn and study and love and grow in our relationship with God. He will use us as His instruments to magnify Himself and draw others to him. When barriers or objections come along the way, He has given us the wisdom and the tools to give answers and bear witness in a way that gives God much glory.
Questions to Consider
How does God’s sovereignty free us to serve Him?
Write a two-page summary of what you have learned from this course.