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Good News for the City: Urban Apologetics

Friend of the blog, Ramon Mayo of Urban Ministries Inc. and UrbanFaith.com has an interview with Chris Brooks about his new book, Urban Apologetics: Answering Challenges to Faith for Urban Believers. In the interview, Mayo and Brooks explore the need for thoughtful articulation of the faith to respond to the distinct questions that people are asking. Doing Apologetics from an Urban Perspective opens a conversation about how best to engage the living contexts of our cities with the gospel–acknowledging that both the questions and responses may differ from those of prior generations of apologists.

Chris Brooks is the senior pastor of Evangel Ministries and also the founder and president of the Detroit Bible Institute. He also hosts a Detroit-aired daily radio show, “Equipped For Life,”and is the newly appointed Campus Dean of Moody Theological Seminary-Michigan. I recently had the opportunity to talk to Chris over about his new book “Urban Apologetics” and apologetics in general.

What inspired you to write a book on apologetics?

Two things. First it comes from a passion for the gospel in the urban community. People have intellectual barriers and need answers to their questions about life, so I wanted to provide the answers from Christ and scripture because most people assume that we don’t have answers.

Secondly it stems from our members being sent out to do evangelism and coming back with the questions and objections of the urban community they were sent to. I took it upon myself to develop a specific ministry of equipping Christians to answer people’s objections regarding the faith.

Why do you believe apologetics are important for the urban context?

Answering people’s questions about the faith is not a suburban, middle class, white thing; it’s a people thing. The objections may be different but we still are called to answer them. The Ferguson issue is a prime example. Many in urban communities are asking, “Where is the God of Justice?” Evangelical Christianity needs to address that.

So I see myself as a bridge between the academic apologists and the urban community. My goal is to spark apologetics in the urban context and at the same time spark urban concerns in the academic apologists context.

cbrooks-resize-200x300Are there a lot of black voices in apologetics?

Yes there are, actually. My goal in writing this book was to get a conversation started. To give a general overview and then have others follow up in more nuanced and specific areas. There is not a lack of strong black intellectuals. One of the common perceptions about the black church is that it is inspiration only, not philosophy, I want to show we can do both. We have highly competent scholars who handle the intellectual challenges of this generation.

What books would you recommend for those who want to get started learning more about how to provide a defense for their faith?

Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics by William Lane Craig.

Liberating Black Theology: The Bible and the Black Experience in America by Anthony Bradley.

Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine by Wayne Grudem.

True for You, But Not for Me: Overcoming Objections to Christian Faith by Paul Copan.


For the full interview, follow the link here to UrbanFaith.com!


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