Co-incidentally at the same time that I was preparing the original post on Apologetics, I was also teaching a couple of Apologetics sessions at OM Lifehope. One student asked “What do I do when someone’s objection is that they are already happy and contented in life.”
We talked through all the sorts of things you might expect such as “What is true happiness?” and “What happens when you lose the things that make you happy?” We also considered that the idea of losing the source(s) of happiness in their life may seem a remote possibility -especially for younger people.
So we then talked about what is “success” in Apologetics. If we think of apologetics as being primarily an intellectual argument then success will mean that we win the argument and the other person will acquiesce. But that’s not what Apologetics is all about. It’s a means of Gospel Proclamation. This means two things.
1. Our responsibility is to proclaim. It is the Holy Spirit who works in the hearer’s heart to produce conviction and repentance.
2. We trust God to work to his own timetable. Maybe they will not respond as we would like immediately but the word will take root and they will remember it at a future date. So with the person who says “I’m happy, I’m okay!” I might want to warn them about building on sand instead of the rock. Jesus warns that when the storm comes then the house on the sand will fall. We want our friends to get their life foundations sorted out now. However, it may not be until the day that the storm comes and sweeps away the sandy foundations that our friends realise “I was building on the wrong foundations but I remember a friend who told me about the right foundation.”