A noble apologist is driven by an active love of God that seeks deeper knowledge of God. St. Anselm’s faith seeking understanding. If you are Christian blogger who wishes to effectively communicate your worldview in a language, beliefs, values, symbols, traditions and practices that are already familiar to atheists, then reading atheists’ blogs could be the key to help you understand their diverse atheistic worldviews.
As a Christian who love to learn, think and share the reasons for what I believe and why I believe it to be true, reading opposite worldviews and see how they challenge my Christian worldview is an important part of correcting, reforming, changing or abandoning some weak or false perspectives that I hold. It also helps me communicate my Christian worldview to others in a way I can be understood.
Here are 10 points that will help you to enjoy and respectfully engage with atheist bloggers.
How To Read Atheist’s Blogs: Modified Adler & Doren’s Method
- Find what the article is about. Find the major subject matter. Define the problem(s) the blogger is trying to solve or setting and try to correctly outline the whole article.
- Come to terms with the blogger by interpreting his key words, grasping leading propositions in his most important sentences.
- Know the blogger’s arguments by finding them in, or constructing them out of, sequences of sentences.
- Do not begin criticism until you have completed rereading the article, correctly interpreting the blogger’s words, understand and outline his argument. “Do not say you agree, disagree, or suspend judgment, until you can say “I understand.”- Mortimer J. Adler
- Do not disagree disputatiously or contentiously.
- Demonstrate that you recognize the difference between knowledge and mere personal opinion by presenting good reasons for any critical judgment you make.
- When criticizing, try to use as few, clear and kind words to show wherein the blogger is uninformed, misinformed, illogical or incomplete.
- Avoid disagreeing on minor details.
- “Pick your battles”. Do not comment on the topic you are not familiar with. Study, ponder, and come back when you are familiar with the topic at hand.
- Be quick to point out your own errors. Quick to admit you were wrong, and quick to correct your mistakes.
Remember, a noble apologist seeks proofs of certain doctrine of her faith not for the sake of attaining to faith by means of reason, as Anslem of Canterbury once said, but that she may be delighted by understanding and meditating on those things which she believes and always ready to convince any one who demands of her a reason of that hope which is in her.
Go be a noble apologist who walks in wisdom toward outsiders, makes the best use of the time. May your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person. (Col. 4:5-6)
Recommended Reading: How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler and Charles Lincoln Van Doren