The Apostle Paul, and the Struggle Before Victory

The Apostle Paul took on the greatest philosophers and thinkers in Athens and other cities of the Roman world. While staying humble and acting in love, he and the other apostles were unashamed (Romans 1:16) and bold (Acts 4:13, 31). Their churches helped launch a philosophical and cultural revolution that changed the world. There have been many ups and downs in the interim, but Biblical worldview holds its own even today centuries after the scientific revolution and 161 years after the Darwinian revolution. The academic consensus belittles “evangelical Christians,” but so did the Stoics and Epicureans in Paul’s Day. Numerous also-rans for philosophical dominance have come and gone, often attacking Christianity as part of their strategy. The Bible is an anvil that has broken many hammers.

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Nothing is stopping Christian philosophers and thinkers from taking the offense on matters of public policy and worldview. The only limits are access to media for making their case and the boldness to do it. Instead, many shy evangelicals, unaware of the strengths of their position, allow the secularists to set the debate, define the terms and call the plays. Pastors feel more comfortable hiding inside the church walls preaching to the choir. In so doing, they allow brash proponents of indefensible positions like Darwinism and atheism to dominate the media and intimidate everyone else, leading to the election of politicians who first pigeonhole and then attack bogeymen like “evangelicals” with unconstitutional laws, regulations and court orders restricting religious liberty. Before they turn around, pastors and church members are being persecuted. Would this happen if pastors trained and equipped their members in apologetics and spiritual warfare and sent them out as ambassadors for Christ? (II Corinthians 5:20). Paul changed the world by reasoning with the philosophers on Mars Hill, in synagogues, schools, on the streets and from house to house. What overcame his fear? What gave him confidence? At the end of his life, he said, “I know whom I have believed” (II Timothy 1:12, 3:14).

Christians Need to Stop Retreating and Take the Lead in the Marketplace of Ideas from David F. Coppedge

When the secularists have trained their enemy to think like failures (waves to the seminaries), there is no need for them to work too hard to win.

I am confident that Christian pastors, public intellectuals and theologians will never stop retreating. You’ll never get a church revolt — or lose your job — if you always feed the parishioners safe, uncontroversial milk. And Christian institutions will never lose your regular donors if they refuse to cause trouble with the authorities.

These men will never expand the Kingdom of God into the world, or discipline the nations, training them in Christ’s Law-Word.

The laity – and their children – will have to do the job.

(Those laymen who aren’t just passively waiting for the rapture, that is.)


From Chalcedon:

Why Did St. Paul Spend So Much Time in Jail?

What is the proper understanding of Romans 13? This episode of the Out of the Question Podcast focuses on the author of the Book of Romans and how his life reflected the doctrine he taught.

If you want to change the world like Paul did, expect to pay the price as he did.

REAL victory doesn’t come cheap.

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