Editor’s Introduction -- By: John Warwick Montgomery
Cynical definition of a ‘bore’: ‘someone who continually talks about himself or herself when you want to talk about yourself.’ Does the present issue of the GLOBAL JOURNAL suffer from this problem? Why has the Editor had the effrontery to create a ‘Montgomery’ issue?
No nefarious planning went into this (really): the issue, like Topsy, just ‘grew.’ E-mails arrived from diverse sources expressing concern about criticisms of the Montgomery apologetic appearing on freethinking and atheistic websites; essays analysing the problems with presuppositionalism surfaced; and from as far away as Australia new support for the Editor’s unique juridical style of apologetic came into the JOURNAL’S hands. Suddenly, the pieces coalesced and the result is, we believe, a remarkable themed issue.
But might this effort still fit the perverse definition with which we began? Is the subject matter all that important? We think so, and our reasons are not egotistical ones.
Firstly, the proper defence of the faith remains a critical problem for the church. Without a satisfactory ‘reason for the hope that is within us,’ Christianity descends to the level of the cults, sects, and other world’s religions, which have only personal experience and subjective claims in their support. Only a sound apologetic can counteract the endemic problem of the non-Christian who is convinced that all religious claims, including the claims of Christ, are no more than a question of inner ‘faith’--which, conveniently, he or she does not happen to possess. Illustration: Last September, my wife and I, inveterate Sherlockians that we are, participated in the Sherlock Holmes Society of London’s Baltic cruise to St Petersburg. On the ship, there was time for some religious discussions. When we returned home, I received a letter from one of the other participants. It reads it part:
‘No matter what is put forward it all comes down to faith in the end. In the Bible we are dealing with another language, another culture and another era and this to some extent has a mysterious supernatural aura about it which undoubtedly appeals to some folk. The whole idea of creation/religion is fascinating but I regret that in my case the faith eludes me.’
Only a meaningful apologetic can possibly deal with this kind of reaction to evangelical proclamation, and we believe that the essays to follow offer great assistance along that line.
Secondly, ‘metapologetics’ (the discussion and determination of which defences of the faith are good, bad, or indifferent) is gaining, not losing ground. Postmodernism has by no means rendered such analyses otiose. A good example of the high interest in this area is the recently publ...
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