Apologetics I

Apologetics is that branch of theology which seeks to confirm the relevance of the Christian faith through rational arguments. It continuously seeks the common ground and linguistic forms between traditional Christian teaching and contemporary thought, in this way making the reality of revelation available for outsiders. Thus, for example the 2nd-3rd century apologists widely used Greek philosophical concepts and tried to show with persuasive arguments that contemporary pagan religion was untenable. The themes of classical apologetics are the Christian critique of: philosophical arguments for the evidence of God, the problem of evil, the relationship between the Christian faith and modern science, the claims to the universality of this faith and its particularity in relation to other world religions, and, worldview models, ideologies, cultural phenomena, etc. The course aims to provide an introduction to this style of thinking and arguing.

Competences

Specific competences

Students will become familiar with the characteristics of the patristic era's apologetic thinking (Justin, Aristides), the theological challenges of the modern paradigm shift (science and faith), and the problems which nowadays may be obstacles on the road to Christian faith (the great problem of evil, the pluralistic post-modern relativity perspective against the exclusive truth claims of Christ).

General competences

The course helps to bring the student to the conviction that his faith holds up and proves to be meaningful in the structured regularities of the created world, man and social reality. This faith proves itself able to stand in this world, although its origin is not from this world. The student can understand that atheism is not the only intellectual behaviour which can be undertaken with intellectual honour (as advertised by the new atheism). Contrary to this, it is the affirmation of life which flows from belief in the God of life. Meanwhile, through opposing arguments and counter-arguments one can become conscious of the richness of one’s faith, while learning tolerance and acceptance towards otherness, knowing he is not the one who has to fulfil the Kingdom of God on this earth.

Total estimated time

Classroom study Course Seminar Practice
2 hours/week 1 1 0
28 hours/semester 14 14 0
Individual study Hours/sem
Total estimated time 80
Studying course notes and bibliography 20
Further documentation in libraries, electronic platforms, or on the field 20
Preparing essays, papers, or documentation 10
Personal tutoring 2
Total individual study 52

Examination

1. A hallgató szóbeli vizsgát tesz az előadások jegyzetei és a kiadott anyag alapján -- 50%
2. Szemináriumi dolgozatot mutat be egy apologetikai témából, és írásban is benyújtja azt -- 50%

Bibliography

Book

Collection of studies