Andy Miller III
Top Ten Books on Apologetics with Dr. Steve BlakemoreTop Ten Books on Apologetics with Dr. Steve Blakemore

Top Ten Books on Apologetics with Dr. Steve Blakemore

June 30 2022


On today's podcast we hear from Wesley Biblical Seminary's Professor of Christian Thought, Dr. Steve Blakemore about his Top Ten Books on Apologetics.

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Contender: Going Deeper in the Book of Jude - This all-inclusive small group study on the book of Jude is releasing July 4th. Check it out on the course page: http://courses.andymilleriii.com

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Transcript:

Transcript

Andy Miller

welcome to the Mortis Story podcast.There is a great show for you today.

10 Top ten books on Apollo.

Jenks this is a great interview that I had with Doctor Steve Blakemore and I think you'll find a lot of very helpful resources for your own spiritual act as we seek to become defenders of the faith together to contend for the faith once for all.

Delivered to the Saints, you know that comes from the little book of Jude, and you might have heard that next week.

4th I am releasing my study of the Book of Jude.

It is a small group curriculum that's available for people.

Andy Miller

There are six sessions, so kind of like the ideas you'd walk through it in six weeks.

Andy Miller

There is more than six bonus pieces that come along with it where I go into more depth into certain passages?

Andy Miller

There's discussion guides altogether more than five.

Andy Miller

Hours of content available for you.

Andy Miller

As we go deeper into this book of Jude, you know, I, I think that, uh Christianity.

Andy Miller

That is Jude less is lacking.

Andy Miller

Because I think I put Jude in the Canon for a reason.

Andy Miller

So if you want to know about what's coming out with this Jude study called Contender, going deeper in the book of Jude, sign up for my e-mail list.

Andy Miller

There'll be a link below in the show notes Andy Miller thethird.com, and if you sign up for my e-mail list you'll get news about that. So next week when it releases that only for that week.

Andy Miller

There will be sales available for that study, so I would love you to and we're going to make special deals available for those who are going to do it in a small group.

Andy Miller

Group those who will do it as a for their whole church, or even for a region.

Andy Miller

So we want that to be available to you and we're excited about that.

Andy Miller

I want to thank our sponsors who have come along to help me make this podcast happen.

Andy Miller

Wpo development is has been with us from the very beginning, as has Bill Robert to financial planner Wpo development.

Andy Miller

They do.

Andy Miller

Feasibility studies capital campaigns and like they do great work, you'll find a link to them in my show notes.

Andy Miller

As with Bill Roberts who's a financial planner who helps people really plan for retirement and use the money God given them in a wonderful way so that they're being good stewards of those resources.

Andy Miller

So check them out in my show notes, thanks to for their sponsorship.

Andy Miller

Now on to today's podcast.

Andy Miller

With Steve Blakemore top ten apologetic books.

Andy Miller

Welcome to the more to the Story podcast and today we have a special edition 'cause we are combined.

Andy Miller

With the.

Steve Blakemore

Thinking is good for you.

Andy Miller

Is it?

Steve Blakemore

It's it is good for you.

Andy Miller

Is it good for you?

Andy Miller

OK, good.

Steve Blakemore

Very good for you.

Andy Miller

With Doctor Steve Blakemore.

Andy Miller

So we've combined podcasts podcasts today.

Andy Miller

So if you are thinking is good for you.

Andy Miller

Person, could you come and check out the more to the story podcast with Andy Miller?

Andy Miller

And if you are interested in more to story podcasts, I guarantee you you will find it interesting to see Doctor Steve Blakemore podcast.

Andy Miller

Both of these.

Andy Miller

Podcasts are brought to you by Wesley Biblical Seminary, where we are developing trusted leaders for faithful churches.

Andy Miller

And that happens in a variety of ways.

Andy Miller

We have lay initiatives, Masters of Arts, Masters of Divinity, Dr of Ministry, and we even have just recently started a bachelors in pastoral ministry.

Andy Miller

So we would encourage you to participate that, for instance, our own doctor Steve Blakemore has taught in all three of those areas just in the last few months.

Steve Blakemore

Yes indeed I have.

Steve Blakemore

I love and enjoyed every bit of it.

Steve Blakemore

We have some really good students and it's exciting to see their intellectual hunger because of their spiritual love for Jesus.

Steve Blakemore

It's just a beautiful thing.

Andy Miller

Absolutely and doctor Blakemore.

Andy Miller

You have been teaching here at Wesley Biblical Seminary.

Steve Blakemore

For I'm finishing my 22nd year.

Andy Miller

Just hoping.

Andy Miller

Wow and you are a professor of Christian thought emphasizing and you're kind of leading our apologetics program and our philosophical theology classes as well.

Steve Blakemore

I am.

Andy Miller

In addition to occasionally teaching things like preaching and pastoral ministry in the light, because you've also you serve as a pastor right now and have served before you enter the Academy full time so.

Steve Blakemore

Yes, I found it a very beneficial thing to have been in full-time pastoral ministry after seminary when I pursued two additional degrees.

Steve Blakemore

First of all, the Master of Arts degree awake for us.

Steve Blakemore

I was a pastor of a growing church in Virginia, Wake Forest University, but dealing with that sort of secular world of religion and philosophy, being rooted and grounded in real people real lives in the real world.

Steve Blakemore

Yeah, and trying to help them understand the real gospel.

Steve Blakemore

It was very helpful and then also.

Steve Blakemore

When I studied at the University of Tennessee, just strict secular philosophy, right being rooted and grounded in in the church actually made me a better thinker than almost any of my colleagues.

Steve Blakemore

At least a more holistic thinker.

Andy Miller

Right, you're having to put it all together on a regular basis.

Steve Blakemore

Yeah, I'm not saying I would.

Steve Blakemore

I'm not saying I was smarter than than they are.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

That's that's for someone else to make that assessment.

Steve Blakemore

But I did feel like I had a much more holistic view of.

Steve Blakemore

Thinking and why it?

Andy Miller

Matters and then if if somebody said come and study at Wesley Biblical Samaria, what they would see is like that holistic approach is something that matters.

Andy Miller

Like here, our philosophy teacher is also pastoring a church in a variety of our professors.

Andy Miller

Here are serving local churches who are involved, like boots on the ground ministry and work right here in the Jackson area, so more thankful to Wesley.

Andy Miller

Biblical seminary, which gives us an opportunity to share ideas like this.

Andy Miller

I also have an additional sponsor.

Andy Miller

That comes through and Bill Roberts is a financial planner.

Andy Miller

Our thanks to him for help making this podcast happen.

Andy Miller

You can find information for him in my show notes.

Andy Miller

Now today we are excited to bring to you the top ten the top 10.

Andy Miller

Now we didn't spend a long time on this and we had a little bit of ARM wrestling to figure out what would be #1 two and three, but we got their top ten books.

Andy Miller

On apologetics and I am deferring because I want and I'm going to learn a lot from this podcast.

Andy Miller

So top ten books on apologetics.

Andy Miller

Are you OK with this list?

Steve Blakemore

Well, you know, for the most part, unfortunately we we were limited.

Andy Miller

Not my books.

Steve Blakemore

No, we were limited to the fact that we wanted to emphasize.

Steve Blakemore

Books for which we had our copies here and the in the seminary.

Andy Miller

Yes, yes.

Steve Blakemore

And I have two or three that are in my library at home that I utilize regularly.

Steve Blakemore

So other than that, I'm relatively satisfied with it.

Andy Miller

So we also weren't.

Andy Miller

We're not choosing them based upon just like which ones are the best dissertations or contributes to most the Academy.

Andy Miller

But what's our kind of criteria that you establish?

Steve Blakemore

Well, my thoughts is which are the?

Steve Blakemore

Which are the most useful?

Steve Blakemore

OK for real people real lives real?

Steve Blakemore

Church members thinking deeply about the faith and learning how to address the sort of objections that unbelievers raise or even find some answers for the kind of questions that arise within any thinking Christians mind about these things.

Steve Blakemore

I think.

Andy Miller

That's that's a good criteria for us to understand, like we're trying to get things that we hopefully we we believe will be useful to all the people who listen to our podcasts.

Andy Miller

And so we'll start number 10.

Andy Miller

Number 10 on the list is the beauty of the infinite by David Bentley Hart, Steve you want.

Andy Miller

To tell us about.

Steve Blakemore

This book, well, this book is basically a real brainbuster of a book so.

Andy Miller

So this kind of like almost moves outside of our criteria, but we wanted to get it in here.

Did it?

Steve Blakemore

Yeah, but it.

Steve Blakemore

It's it's.

Steve Blakemore

It's really good because what he wants to do is.

Steve Blakemore

Turn a discussion of Christian truth away from simply factual evidence or doctrinal clarity or internal consistency, and, as the subtitle says, he's talking about the aesthetics of Christian truth.

Steve Blakemore

He's showing how Christian claims about reality describe in the most beautiful way possible, human existence and also help us understand why it is that we have these impulses toward beauty.

Steve Blakemore

Toward goodness and how even the impulse toward truth itself is, is an impulse toward the good and the beautiful.

Andy Miller

So is this moving in direct?

Andy Miller

OK, so obviously the good and beautiful thinking of Thomas Aquinas.

Andy Miller

Maybe with that type of idea, but then also like Azure, I think at this like you've mentioned things related to the moral law we think about even fine tuning arguments.

Andy Miller

But he's trying to point to like kind, maybe kind of the wonder of all of this.

Andy Miller

Is drawing something to like what was what's he trying to pull us to?

Andy Miller

Like just a belief in God?

Andy Miller

Or is it the existence of morality?

Steve Blakemore

Well, no, what he's trying to do is talk about the reality of the truth.

Steve Blakemore

Of the Christian faith, not just belief in God, in some generic sense, but belief and the Christian God who has been revealed to us through Jesus Christ and in Jesus Christ.

Andy Miller

OK, OK.

Steve Blakemore

And as Jesus Christ, all of those important propositions.

Andy Miller

Hey Manny.

Steve Blakemore

Instead of just trying to unpack it in a sort of blow by blow account, this objection, here's the answer.

Steve Blakemore

It just begins to lay out this rich tapestry of how does this help us see the real beauty of our of of life and existence itself without, and at the same time acknowledging?

Steve Blakemore

The often ugly side of existence, and therefore I think, to elevate people's sense of wonderment about our very existence. Because, as another book that we're going to discuss in a little while.

Steve Blakemore

By GK Chesterton, this whole idea of wonder is what has been lost.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

It's what has been lost in the 20th century in especially in terms of Protestant.

Steve Blakemore

Christianity, right Protestant evangelicalism and Protestant mainline ISM.

Steve Blakemore

They just the wonder of our very existence, so that's what that's what Hearts book is about.

Steve Blakemore

But it I choose it because it is rich to read, but you need to read it with a dictionary beside.

Steve Blakemore

You're tight, your debt, your chair, when you're reading 'cause you use a lot of big words.

Steve Blakemore

But if you can wade through it by the time you get through it, it really does offer a.

Steve Blakemore

A very expansive view of Christian truth.

Andy Miller

It's great now, going from like #10 to #9 maybe are the two polarities of that area, so we're going to throw in the case for Christ number 9 by Lee Strobel. Which of course a book.

Andy Miller

Kind of like journalist.

Andy Miller

This is probably when he.

Andy Miller

This is the first book that came out in case for Christ.

Andy Miller

Of course you had the case of series has come out with the case for faith.

Andy Miller

The case for creation.

Andy Miller

Now he's a case for heaven that's come out recently, and I think there's a lot of work happening with that.

Andy Miller

Maybe in a movie, of course this has been made in a movie to the case for Christ, but as a journalist who came and investigated the claims of crisis.

Andy Miller

Very readable, he goes in and he does assume to be the expert himself, though obviously he's like accumulated a lot of knowledge through the years, but goes and.

Andy Miller

Visits with in this case, like New Testament historians or, and yeah, anything else you want.

Andy Miller

What do you want to say about?

Andy Miller

Case for cracks.

Andy Miller

I kind of walked right into it.

Steve Blakemore

Well, I just think it.

Steve Blakemore

I think it's a beautiful book because it has this.

Steve Blakemore

It has this testimonial quality to it, yeah?

Steve Blakemore

And even the subtitle, a journalist personal investigation of the evidence for Jesus and Stroble, you know, would give his give his testimony that he was not a believer at first.

Steve Blakemore

He began to look at things, then he traveled to investigate the evidence.

Steve Blakemore

But it's also in terms of use.

Steve Blakemore

In terms of useful.

Steve Blakemore

US and getting people into the issues.

Steve Blakemore

This book could be much higher on the list.

Andy Miller

That's right, yeah.

Steve Blakemore

Sure, but but it it may not delve as deeply into some things as some of the other books might.

Andy Miller

It's not as much of a like a.

Andy Miller

It's not a contribution to academic conversation, but it's more or less like going to those academic voices and then learning from them and putting it at a level that people understand.

Andy Miller

I've I've heard some wild stories about this book that how it's been used to get for people to come to Christ.

Andy Miller

One person found it buried.

Andy Miller

On the beach.

Andy Miller

It was late, was on the beach and it's like it was right there.

Andy Miller

They pulled it up and.

Andy Miller

They started reading and they came to faith because of that.

Steve Blakemore

Well, so that's an excellent metaphor.

Steve Blakemore

OK, that it is buried because for most Christian people, the idea that there is a real.

Andy Miller

Oh man.

Steve Blakemore

Reasonable, let me not use not when you just weren't rational or use the word proof, but there is a reasonable case to be made for Christ, right?

Andy Miller

Right, right, right.

Steve Blakemore

To show that faith is not some blind commitment, but it is based on.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

Actual evidence is that have to be interpreted one way or the other, so it's reasonable, and so the metaphor of it being buried in the sand is quite apropos.

Steve Blakemore

I think that so many times Christians either bury their heads in the sand and pretend that all of these questions don't exist.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

Or they don't realize that buried beneath their feet are resources within the Christian faith and by scholars and others like Lee Strobel to present to them this reality that hey.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

You don't have to be ashamed of what you believe.

Steve Blakemore

You don't have to be defensive about what you believe.

Steve Blakemore

You don't even have to be ultimately questioning about what you believe, because there are evidences that show you how reasonable our faith really is.

Andy Miller

Right, I love it.

Andy Miller

This is great.

Andy Miller

We could just talk about this book for a long time.

Andy Miller

I'm going to jump to number 8 now.

Andy Miller

We're going from a jerk. We go from a philosopher to a journalist to a mathematician, Blaise Pascal's pensee's, so it's Steve, tell us why we would include this now this yeah, and how people could use this.

Steve Blakemore

Book well, first of all let me say about pensee's.

Steve Blakemore

In order to really read, Ponce says well, you need to get a book by Peter Kreeft, which I have a copy of at home, but I don't have it here.

Steve Blakemore

But I have to mention this here.

OK.

Steve Blakemore

It's called Christianity for modern pagans.

Steve Blakemore

And it's a.

Good title.

Steve Blakemore

It's basically a commentary on Pascals.

Steve Blakemore

Paul says.

Steve Blakemore

Then a term policy just means thoughts and it was published.

Andy Miller

Right, right?

Steve Blakemore

I believe I recall post Humously because a journal of his musings were found and the reason that it's so good.

Right?

Steve Blakemore

Is that Blaise?

Steve Blakemore

Pascal actually begins with the deepest existential questions, the deepest questions about our existence, about who are we?

Steve Blakemore

Why do we do the things we do?

Steve Blakemore

Why do we feel the way we do?

Steve Blakemore

What's the best explanation about the reality in which we find ourselves?

Steve Blakemore

Christian and human beings.

Steve Blakemore

Basically we wake up and we find ourselves in the middle of a reality, right?

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

That's what happens.

Steve Blakemore

We're born into this world sooner or later.

Steve Blakemore

We become self conscious.

Steve Blakemore

It's like waking up and then we begin to say whoa.

Steve Blakemore

What is all of this about?

Steve Blakemore

And so Paul says in addition to Christianity.

Steve Blakemore

For modern pagans.

Steve Blakemore

The commentary and application by Peter Kreeft.

Steve Blakemore

RFT is would is.

Steve Blakemore

It gives a great contribution because of the sort of the internal quest for meaning and understanding of our lives, right?

Steve Blakemore

That it presents.

Andy Miller

To us and I, I think one thing to do is when you find this book like like Doctor Blakemore said, if you look at it, you'll see that there are just like.

Andy Miller

Little sections of like just thoughts that he was working out.

Andy Miller

It's not 1 comprehensive argue.

Andy Miller

But honestly, that's not a bad way to read.

Andy Miller

Like to be.

Andy Miller

It's actually very digestible to go through it and and you'll find in this book his famous wager and and different ideas that have influenced people for years.

Andy Miller

So this I mean highly recommend this.

Andy Miller

This is number 8.

Steve Blakemore

I bet by the way, I've actually been starting to map out a.

Steve Blakemore

A way to incorporate Pascal Sponsees into a into a.

Steve Blakemore

Year long devotional.

Andy Miller

Oh this sounds great.

Steve Blakemore

A book that scripture reading and then some reflection on something in PA says it's it's.

Andy Miller

Oh man, I know we need to work on this.

Steve Blakemore

It's that rich to me.

Andy Miller

Coming to you soon from Wesley Biblical Seminary, I hope so. OK, so now we are on to 7 #7 reason for the hope within.

Andy Miller

Edited by Michael Murray.

Andy Miller

This is a collection of essays so I this is one that you added.

Andy Miller

I didn't know about so I want to learn about it from you.

Andy Miller

Right now, OK, why do I need this book?

Steve Blakemore

K reason reason for the hope within is a very good book because it is a collection of essays written by various scholars with Expo.

Steve Blakemore

T's philosophically and theologically in various areas of question and issues related to the Christian faith, and so it's divided up in a sense so that you have the the various chapters are.

Steve Blakemore

For instance, reasons for the hope within how do we enter a post modern world? OK, what are all the theist IC arguments? The arguments that are there for God's existence?

Steve Blakemore

How do we address things like God and evil and suffering?

Steve Blakemore

Yeah, but then there's one by John O'Leary Hawthorne about the arguments for atheism and then it just goes down like it's like 16 chapters ending with the authority of Scripture.

Steve Blakemore

And so it's it's very.

Steve Blakemore

It's very it's very petty, but yes, it'll be a good.

Andy Miller

It's almost like a textbook.

Andy Miller

Would this be a good textbook even for undergraduate, right?

Steve Blakemore

It'd be a really good textbook for for those kind of apologetic issues.

Steve Blakemore

OK unpacked and these guys.

Steve Blakemore

The people that write in it do a very good job.

Steve Blakemore

I think of addressing things deeply but in a way that's accessible to non technical experts.

Steve Blakemore

And there's some jargon in it, but it's it's limited.

Andy Miller

And I notice this as a forward by album playing a guy who some might think of as like one of the greatest philosophical theologians of our time.

Andy Miller

And I'm sorry we don't have any those books on our list, which we could we could, but it might not have been the kind of the the practical sort of value that we might have had.

Andy Miller

Give us a what do you think with album planning guys?

Andy Miller

Should we have?

Steve Blakemore

The Alvin plant.

Andy Miller

Should we give an honorable?

Steve Blakemore

Mention at least Alvin Plantinga is a is a very.

Steve Blakemore

Profound thinker a lot of times his his argumentation, though he's directed most of his argumentation toward the Academy and to make make it reasonable within the the Academy that belief in God is what he calls properly basic.

Andy Miller

Right, right?

Andy Miller

Right, right?

Steve Blakemore

That it's it's something that.

Steve Blakemore

Yeah, that has to be taken seriously.

Steve Blakemore

So a lot of his writing is is quite philosophically dense, so that's the reason I normally don't include him in lists like this.

Andy Miller

But if you come to Wesley, biblical similar, you're going to read some album planning.

Steve Blakemore

Yeah you will.

Andy Miller

I want you to know reformed Epistemologie.

Steve Blakemore

You will read.

Steve Blakemore

You'll read some things of him.

Andy Miller

So OK, so we have 8-9 kids. So now we are on 6.

Andy Miller

So we have. This is almost a placeholder for anything by the man GK. Chesterton's Orthodoxy, so you might find my version of this.

Andy Miller

I don't have this single.

Andy Miller

I have it combined with his book heretics and I'm reading right now, a kind of a collection of essays.

Andy Miller

I enjoy these two, but Orthodoxy itself is a unique attempt even within Chesterton.

Andy Miller

I think it has like a kind of cohesive argument.

Andy Miller

It's not just a series of.

Andy Miller

Kind of funny essays that are very philosophically driven and but but you you mentioned it earlier wonder this is kind of the the position he's wanting to put people in.

Andy Miller

Tell us about why why people should read this.

Steve Blakemore

Book well, first of all, I think people who would be in on your audience for the most part and my audience as well.

Steve Blakemore

No doubt your audience is larger than mine, but mine is growing all the time and some some of you folks need to help it grow faster.

Steve Blakemore

But the.

Steve Blakemore

It's a good thing to read Chesterton first of all, because he's a.

Steve Blakemore

Roman Catholic, right?

Steve Blakemore

And so often times Roman Catholic.

Steve Blakemore

Spirituality approaches questions in a distinct or different way from what you could call Protestant rational spirituality.

Steve Blakemore

But Chesterton is not non.

Steve Blakemore

Intellectual right?

Steve Blakemore

But what he does is he's basically taking.

Steve Blakemore

Big questions about life.

Steve Blakemore

And he's also exploring hard questions about faith.

Steve Blakemore

And he does so in a way that at the end of it, you realize that Christian Orthodox faith

Steve Blakemore

Faith is.

Steve Blakemore

Is cohesive, it holds together.

Steve Blakemore

It has what I call in.

Steve Blakemore

In apologetics classes, explanatory power right, it helps us understand our lives all by the same time, elevating our sense of what it means to be human in the world.

Steve Blakemore

And so that's that's why I think it's a great classic.

Andy Miller

Yes, yeah.

Steve Blakemore

For all of those reasons.

Andy Miller

It's great, so GK Chesterton, Orthodoxy, OK.

Andy Miller

Moving on now to our next book. So we are at ten 9876 and number 50. I'm so glad we were able to include this Alister McGrath narrative apologetics.

Andy Miller

What is narrative apologetics?

Andy Miller

Why would we have to put that word in front of the apologetics?

Andy Miller

What does he do to help us understand?

Andy Miller

That Steve well.

Steve Blakemore

If if you think about the way people.

Steve Blakemore

Address the question about their lives.

Steve Blakemore

What we always do is we end up trying to weave a story.

Steve Blakemore

To explain our existence or to explain various features about our lives, everybody life is in one sense or another, the expression of a story, right right?

Steve Blakemore

So I mean, take for instance something like Darwinian evolution and natural selection.

Steve Blakemore

Well, while that while it sounds very unrelated to a narrative, it's actually a story about where do we come from?

Steve Blakemore

What do our lives mean?

Steve Blakemore

What kind of beings are we?

Steve Blakemore

There's a story embedded in it, and what McGrath does in this book is to talk about how you can the importance of understanding in a.

Steve Blakemore

In the fully orbed sense of the term, the true Christian narrative in Scripture, first of all, you understand that, and then you begin to learn how to share Scripture, not just by quoting the Bible and saying, well, this is what the Bible says.

Steve Blakemore

Therefore it has to be true instead.

Steve Blakemore

The the essence of the Christian story or stories in the Bible.

Steve Blakemore

And inviting people to discover their lives.

Steve Blakemore

In the midst of those scriptural accounts, and therefore that's why he means what he means by narrative apologetics.

Steve Blakemore

It's an apologetics that's instead of trying to answer this objection, that objects.

Andy Miller

Right, right, right.

Steve Blakemore

How do we help people look at their lives in terms of this comprehensive story that they got to tell themselves?

Steve Blakemore

Moves about how to explain their existence in the meaning of their lives and incorporate into it the power of the scriptural narrative, so that that's why I think it's really helpful, especially for laypeople and then last fall when I taught.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

Foundations of apologetics.

Steve Blakemore

The students really resonated with.

Steve Blakemore

The usefulness of this book.

Andy Miller

I mean there there is some utility in a book of like 100 questions that are hard to answer.

Andy Miller

I like and going through that and seeing the way that people answer them or like the approach of like looking like a textbook like the edited volume you mentioned that walks through basic arguments for Christian faith.

Andy Miller

The problem of evil.

Andy Miller

You know multiple religions.

Andy Miller

What all this means?

Andy Miller

But this is a different approach because it's emphasizing story emphasizing Scripture story, so I love that emphasis, and I think that that's like we're trying to present a holistic list that gives a little different way to think about the apologetics task.

Andy Miller

So here.

Steve Blakemore

Here's here's.

Steve Blakemore

Here's gives you a little bit of flavor too for the for the.

Steve Blakemore

Content so introducing narrative apologetics.

Steve Blakemore

First section is why do stories matter?

Steve Blakemore

Why facts are not enough?

Steve Blakemore

Narratives, intelligibility and meaning then what are the theological foundations of narrative apologetics then how do you apply them practically?

Steve Blakemore

And then you get on down.

Steve Blakemore

It's the Christian story.

Steve Blakemore

Three and the meaning of life.

Steve Blakemore

And then developing narrative approaches to apologetics so it has this very practical last chapter that you don't have to be someone with the.

Steve Blakemore

Degree or any sort of advanced degree to be able to benefit from this and it'll enrich your life as someone just sharing the gospel of Jesus Day in and day out.

Andy Miller

With people love it, that's great.

Andy Miller

OK, we're coming down the list.

Andy Miller

Now we're coming to number 4, the classic book, and this is my old copy.

Andy Miller

Originally, when this was out, it was $1.45. That shows how I I can't remember where I found this so I got this from a family member.

Andy Miller

Maybe I stole it from a family.

Andy Miller

No, I didn't steal it, but mere Christianity by CS Lewis.

Andy Miller

So we have to.

Andy Miller

We have to have on our top ten list.

Andy Miller

We have to have a CS Lewis book.

Steve Blakemore

Ah yes.

Andy Miller

Of course, a series of radio addresses that's maybe become one of the best read Christian books of our time.

Andy Miller

And it's just a it's a, you know something.

Andy Miller

The good book when you read it multiple times and that's been a case of mere Christianity for me.

Andy Miller

And you know, really kind of focusing in on the moral argument and then leading from that throughout the rest of the book.

Andy Miller

I find to be wonderfully.

Steve Blakemore

Helpful, well, you're exactly right.

Steve Blakemore

I can't really add much to it.

Steve Blakemore

And once again, the genius of Lewis approach as an Anglican.

Steve Blakemore

Is going to be similar to the genius of Chesterton's approach as a Roman Catholic OK, 'cause they don't get?

Steve Blakemore

They don't come at this as Protestant evangelicals, right?

Steve Blakemore

But they do come to it.

Andy Miller

Right, mere Christianity.

Steve Blakemore

They do come it at people at believing in the inerrancy of Scripture, and in the doctrine of the Trinity.

Steve Blakemore

Right and both of them actually emphasized in their own teachings about Christian faith.

Steve Blakemore

The transformed life, a life of holiness seeking after holiness.

Steve Blakemore

The genius is it starts with.

Steve Blakemore

This it starts inwardly with people and says OK.

Steve Blakemore

They're all just you're very active existing in the world.

Steve Blakemore

So the moral argument why in the world is it that you have this intuition?

Steve Blakemore

That there are some things that are just wrong, right?

Steve Blakemore

Some things that are obligatory on us right where in the world does that come?

Steve Blakemore

From and then unpacking from there and starting from there outward rather than.

Steve Blakemore

Oh here all the evidences for God and trying to argue inward, right?

Right?

Steve Blakemore

So I think that's the the genius of it.

Andy Miller

May you set in something interesting there.

Andy Miller

I'd love to just unpack it for a second that Chesterton and Lewis would both be inerrantist, so to speak.

Andy Miller

Now they might not have used that that word, but you you think of them both as like claiming holding to a form of inerrancy.

Steve Blakemore

Oh yeah, I mean they would never have questioned the absolute.

Steve Blakemore

Absolute unquestionable authority of scripture, and believe that what the scripture says is historical should be read as historical.

Andy Miller

Hence the true myth like it's so, is having the truth.

Steve Blakemore

Yes, and.

Steve Blakemore

And so so they might be willing to entertain hermeneutical questions about OK, what books in the Bible have to be affirmed as clearly historical, right?

Steve Blakemore

So they may may be willing to entertain, for instance, that the book of job

Steve Blakemore

Is not a biography.

Andy Miller

Right now it may be a historical.

Steve Blakemore

His **** is a kind of true theological.

Steve Blakemore

Come parable in expanded form and some people get really uncomfortable with that, but.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

That's not denying that the Book of Job is true, right?

Steve Blakemore

It's just it's just saying we have to understand this book for what it is.

Andy Miller

Right, what it's claiming to do.

Steve Blakemore

And it it fits into the rest.

Steve Blakemore

Of the authoritative Canon, right?

Steve Blakemore

So what is its place so?

Steve Blakemore

But I believe that there's no doubt that they would have.

Steve Blakemore

They would have affirmed in the same way that Wesley Biblical Seminary affirms the doctrine of inerrancy to be an absolute essential, that there are no errors in scripture that would lead us astray.

Right?

Steve Blakemore

From finding God finding the truth about what God has done in the world to reveal himself, finding the truth about our own lives and the truth about the destiny of our lives in Christ.

Steve Blakemore

So that's the reason I.

Steve Blakemore

I contend that they were committed to something, well, I use the term inerrancy.

Andy Miller

Yeah, yeah, no, it's I I like I just wanted to.

Andy Miller

I wanted to pull that out of you a little bit.

Andy Miller

I think that's a helpful piece because we can look back and we can look at people right now and John Wesley in the same way to think about the kind of inerrancy type of claims that he makes as well.

Andy Miller

And I think they're valid.

Andy Miller

I think it's good for us to talk through that.

Andy Miller

We can use that term now and we we point back to the Chicago statement that happened in the.

Andy Miller

Late 70s and not that that's perfect in itself, but that's what we're thinking of and we stand with a host of other people and other institutions that affirm that and also great authors like.

Steve Blakemore

This exactly.

Andy Miller

All right?

Andy Miller

So I'm going to move on, even though it's kind of hard.

Andy Miller

I kind of like to camp out there for a while, so I'm glad.

Andy Miller

Glad we're able to throw in William Lane Craig.

Andy Miller

I think one of the premier apologists of our time, I, you know, just as somebody who is.

Andy Miller

Kind of a Renaissance man in philosophy and theology, but I I've even heard him give a talk to kind of just a regular liberal arts community, just challenging people to think better about their faith and how they go about teaching biology and the like.

Andy Miller

But anyhow, reasonable.

Andy Miller

Faith, Christian truth, and apologetics.

Andy Miller

This is the third edition by William Lane Craig and this is somebody you know in his work with.

Andy Miller

So tell us why, why should?

Steve Blakemore

People get this book.

Steve Blakemore

First of all, Bill Craig is the is the.

Steve Blakemore

He is the premier.

Steve Blakemore

Philosophical apologist of the late 20th and early 21st century. There's no doubt about it right. This book is very thorough. It's very deep.

Steve Blakemore

And it's very expansive, giving philosophical and historical arguments philosophical and historical arguments for how Christian faith is absolutely reasonable.

Steve Blakemore

It's rationally coherent, and it's rationally defensible.

Steve Blakemore

It is a little bit thick at places so he has a he has a.

Steve Blakemore

A sort of.

Steve Blakemore

Layperson right, layperson version of the same arguments and he entitled that book on guard right like oh NGURD like as you begin to fence with somebody on guard so.

Andy Miller

That's right.

Andy Miller

And there's even a student version of on guard, and this is, and this could become the rallying cry of his whole.

Andy Miller

Even organizations called reasonable faith, and so you might, you know, that might be a great podcast to subscribe to too.

Andy Miller

Like he.

Andy Miller

A lot of great things that he offers from those resources and honestly, one of the things that I love about him too is he is just great in a debate.

Andy Miller

It's just like you, you know you think about this like a sports analogy.

Andy Miller

If you had to put somebody up one on one you you choose Michael Jordan a certain day or you had like a musician who's going to play something perfectly like it, I don't know.

Andy Miller

Maybe there's somebody that you know if I did, but you had to put somebody up in front of the world to contend for the faith.

Steve Blakemore

Well, yeah, there's not anything better.

Andy Miller

William Lane Craig my guy.

Steve Blakemore

I will say one other thing about.

Steve Blakemore

Craig, he is a deeply devout and spiritual man, deeply devout and spiritual.

OK.

Steve Blakemore

I had him here.

Steve Blakemore

Oh gosh, it's been.

Steve Blakemore

12 years ago, maybe 13 years ago.

Steve Blakemore

To do a debate.

Steve Blakemore

And two or three lectures, in conjunction with Millsaps College.

Steve Blakemore

Yeah, and.

Steve Blakemore

One night we were there and this young man came to me who was an atheist.

Steve Blakemore

And told me since I was the sponsor of the event, that this this presentation that he had heard.

Steve Blakemore

He said I really have to rethink my atheism completely.

Steve Blakemore

I've been really captured by this so I shared that with with Craig when we went out for.

Steve Blakemore

Dinner and he got choked up.

Steve Blakemore

He said it's worth the whole.

Steve Blakemore

Trip to me hey.

Steve Blakemore

Man, if this one young man could could this could help him take a step toward finding Christ wow.

Steve Blakemore

So that was powerful, kind of sent chills up my spine when he said it, yeah.

Andy Miller

Yeah, even as you're saying to me now, yeah, that's great.

Steve Blakemore

So anyway, just wanted to.

Steve Blakemore

I just wanted to give him his.

Steve Blakemore

Props for loving Jesus.

Andy Miller

Yeah, and you know he emphasized that too.

Andy Miller

You know, I've I've heard his testimony himself multiple times and he emphasizes in his own work the importance of.

Andy Miller

Of even crafting and ensuring you have your testimony already in an apologetic way.

Andy Miller

OK, so we're getting to number 2 and one which is the same author.

Andy Miller

But before we do that, I want to encourage people, particularly, maybe some folks from Doctor Blakemore.

Andy Miller

Learners podcasts that are interested in mind. Here's what can happen. If you are interested in a free resource I have available, it is 5 steps, five steps to deeper preaching and teaching, and it's a PDF document and a 45 minute teaching.

Andy Miller

It's available if you sign up for my e-mail list.

Andy Miller

I will send you this for free, so go to Andy Miller.

Andy Miller

Thethird.com that's Andy Miller, IE com. I would love to send this your way. Do you want to say anything before we get to #2?

Andy Miller

No one.

Steve Blakemore

Now just you need to do what he said.

Steve Blakemore

You need to take advantage of that.

Steve Blakemore

'cause Andy is a great preacher.

Andy Miller

Well, thanks for saying so all right. So now we are #201. It's the same author and we only have #2 here, but your number one resource we didn't have available.

Andy Miller

I wanted we'll hold something up, so that's how it so tell.

Steve Blakemore

Us about these books. OK number #2 this is by Peter Kreeft who again is a Roman Catholic.

Andy Miller

OK.

Steve Blakemore

He's a Roman Catholic philosopher actually from whom I have learned immense amounts and with whom I have some serious.

Steve Blakemore

Doctrinal disagreements, but nothing that touches the essence of the faith, right?

Steve Blakemore

As a matter of fact, let me say this about Craig.

Steve Blakemore

Before I tell you about this book, in this book, he actually mentions this, but I've heard him speak before and when people would raise the question, they say Doctor Kreeft.

Steve Blakemore

What in the world?

Steve Blakemore

Are we supposed to do to try to help change the world, to try to save the world from all of the falsehood?

Steve Blakemore

It's out there, and his answer is you need to become a St.

Andy Miller

Yeah, we say.

Steve Blakemore

You need to become holy in your life.

Steve Blakemore

You need to be formed into the image of Jesus Christ fully and this is coming from a guy who could be a brainbuster philosopher if he wants to.

Steve Blakemore

When he wants to be so the refutation, a refutation of moral relativism, I recommend this book highly because it addresses the rejection of not only Christian morality.

Steve Blakemore

But the idea that morality has any absolute universal grounding and foundation and instead and it's a, it's a.

Steve Blakemore

Way it's a.

Steve Blakemore

It's a way to understand the arguments from from from moral relativists who say there's no such thing as absolute morality, right?

Steve Blakemore

But it and it's set up as a series of interviews between a journalist, a woman who is in.

Andy Miller

Right, right, right, right.

Steve Blakemore

Atheist or agnostic.

Steve Blakemore

And actually a Muslim.

Steve Blakemore

A believer and.

Steve Blakemore

I don't want to give too much away, but.

Steve Blakemore

It's set up in like a series of interviews, maybe like 10 interviews that they were.

Steve Blakemore

They were too to have had.

Steve Blakemore

Onsum cottage on Martha's Vineyard.

Steve Blakemore

But you got get this and it's set up like a play.

Steve Blakemore

It reads like a play Libby and Issa is his name.

Andy Miller

OK, OK.

Steve Blakemore

And so Libby says, this Issa says this, and you get this back and forth between them.

Steve Blakemore

And it's just.

Steve Blakemore

It's an engaging read.

Steve Blakemore

And if you're reading, ready to take notes, you're going to see.

Steve Blakemore

A good apologetic process unfold, especially in the question of morality, because where do where do so many questions about the truth of Christianity arise, especially in our world?

Andy Miller

Right, right?

Steve Blakemore

What do you mean homosexuality is a sin?

Andy Miller

Yes, yes.

Andy Miller

What do you mean?

Andy Miller

Who are?

Andy Miller

You who?

Andy Miller

Yeah, how can you make this decision right?

Steve Blakemore

Say this person and so.

Steve Blakemore

I recommend the book highly because it gives us a step into what is usually the beginning point, where Christians in discussion with either LED astray Christians.

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

Or nonbelievers right?

Steve Blakemore

And it's very readable and it's it's very engageable and it's actually quite humorous at point.

Steve Blakemore

So I recommend that one.

Andy Miller

Highly, that's great.

Andy Miller

I mean, in moral relativism.

Andy Miller

This I mean, this is the matter of art.

Andy Miller

I mean, this is something that's cut in our faces every day, so I think it's helpful to have that now you recommend, then our number one resource is Peter Kreeft as well, and it is his handbook tell us about that.

Steve Blakemore

Single day.

Steve Blakemore

It's called the Handbook for Christian apologetics, and I don't recommend it because it's necessarily.

Steve Blakemore

The most.

Steve Blakemore

Absolutely beautifully well written one, although I think it's very well written OK, but I recommend it because it is really set up to be a handbook.

Steve Blakemore

And and you can.

Steve Blakemore

It has a quick reference guide in the front, and so it lists it.

Andy Miller

OK.

Steve Blakemore

Starts out with the 20 arguments for the existence of God.

Steve Blakemore

And then it goes through multiple pages of those and then it talks about the historical reality of the resurrection.

Andy Miller

Right, right?

Steve Blakemore

Why Jesus instead of some other religion?

Steve Blakemore

So it's an easy reference book, but it also it also will expose you very thoroughly.

Steve Blakemore

To a host of questions and answers and issues that will give you some real ammunition.

Steve Blakemore

And it's the kind of go to resource as a pastor if someone comes and asks you a question and you say, well, I'll get back to you tomorrow or this afternoon.

Steve Blakemore

Boom, you go and you open the book and you can.

Steve Blakemore

You can usually find an answer, so I recommend it as number one because of its usability, right?

Andy Miller

Right?

Steve Blakemore

It's it's.

Steve Blakemore

It's not as thorough as something like reasonable faith.

Steve Blakemore

But it is immensely more usable and immediately accessible.

Andy Miller

There we go, so we will have links for all of these and our show notes.

Andy Miller

You can find that and also you can find resources.

Andy Miller

The things that we've talked about here at Wesley.

Andy Miller

Biblical seminary, if.

Andy Miller

This has been an interesting podcast you might be interested in auditing classes that we offer in apologetics or even coming for our Masters of Arts in apologetics.

Andy Miller

Just throw it out there and that is.

Andy Miller

That might be something you'd be interested in doing.

Andy Miller

Thank you so much for coming along to the Mortal Story Podcast and.

Steve Blakemore

The thinking.

Steve Blakemore

Is good for you.

Andy Miller

And you can find that on YouTube where elsewhere all can you find that.

Steve Blakemore

Well, you can.

Steve Blakemore

You can access it very easily.

Steve Blakemore

Through rumble

Andy Miller

OK.

Steve Blakemore

And also through the John and Charles Wesley Center YouTube channel.

Steve Blakemore

OK.

Andy Miller

So you can find these resources.

Andy Miller

It would be great for you to check that out.

Andy Miller

My listeners go do it right now and we don't mind it if you shared a link to this.

Andy Miller

If you take took a.

Andy Miller

If you've enjoyed this podcast to share with some friends, share it on your social media feed.

Andy Miller

I think that will help spread this message.

Andy Miller

Thanks so much for coming along to these this dual podcast today with Andy Miller and Steve Blakemore.

Andy Miller

God bless you.

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