A CHRISTIAN HANDBOOK FOR DEFENDING THE FAITH, by Robert A. Morey. Presbyterian and Reformed Publ. Co., Phillips-burg, N.J. Paper, 45 pp. $1.50.
Apologetics, the defense of the Christian faith, is often presented in a highly technical, difficult, learned sort of language; but if every Christian is responsible to answer those asking reasons for his hope (I Pet. 3:15), then there is a great need for apologetics of a more popular sort. Morey, a young Baptist pastor of Reformed conviction, seeks in this booklet to present something simple enough for average high school and college students, businessmen and housewives.
Because of its concise outline form, the book includes a very large amount of material for its size. The author generally succeeds in getting it into nontechnical language, though stylistically he often lapses into awkwardness.
He begins with a commendable section on the spiritual qualifications of the apologist, a subject which deserves more attention in our circles. He ends with a remarkably broad survey of the Christian world- and life-view as it applies to ethics, art, history, psychology and marriage, contrasting it with non-Christian approaches. Naturally, he doesn’t go into these matters in depth, but his points are well-chosen. This would be excellent material to share with someone who thinks Christianity is only for Sunday worship.
The least adequate part of the book is his discussion of basic principles and methods of apologetics. Morey distinguishes here most unclearly between “evidential” and “presuppositional” approaches, and he never even tells us clearly where he stands on these matters. Likewise, the relations between presuppositions, the law of contradiction and verification are left quite obscure.
There is nothing new here. The book is highly dependent on Schaeffer, somewhat less so on Clark, Rushdoony and Van Til. It contains a great many unargued assertions.
Therefore, it will not be of much value to those already familiar with the field or to those for whom Morey’s statements are initially implausible. Still, the book does present, in fairly simple terms, an accurate and surprisingly broad picture of Christianity as a world-view, and thus may be of use to someone.