The following is Part 6 of the series on women in apologetics from Apologetics 315. See parts one, two, three, four, and five.
An ApoloWhat? - Judy Salisbury
I think most of us will agree that men dominate the Christian apologetics ministries. I am perfectly comfortable with this fact, and I thank God for these wonderful gentlemen. They produce excellent materials so that many of us can stand on their shoulders in our attempt to lead people to Christ.
Yes, most apologetics ministries are predominantly male; so when a woman states that apologetics is the focus of her ministry, folks scratch their heads and ask, “How did you become an apologist?” I chuckle when people ask me this question since I never set out to become one. It happened by listening to one of the best apologists as he offered not simply an answer, but the answer to my greatest question and obstacle to conversion: Was Jesus truly God?
I must return to 1991 when I traveled as a salesperson and spent considerable time on the road. Driving and surfing through various radio stations one afternoon, the Lord used one radio broadcast in particular to pique my curiosity and settle that longstanding question. The answer became clear as I heard the late Dr. Walter Martin’s debate with a cultist. It was an embarrassing defeat for the cultist, but it was a big win for me as I finally heard evidence for the deity of Jesus Christ.
Back in my hotel room, I immediately reached for the Gideon Bible tucked in the nightstand drawer. It was late in the afternoon when the Lord – in His grace and mercy – led me to the book of 1 John and revealed my lost condition. At that very moment I fell to my knees and gave Him my life, my ambitions, my dreams, my sin—everything. By the time I got home, my husband had a brand new wife… and a year later, the Lord gave us both a brand new baby girl. Goodbye corporate world – hello full time, stay-at-home mom!
During that first year of my spiritual infancy, I devoured the Bible along with tapes and CD’s from learned apologists, Bible teachers, and other resources. What struck me the most was the fact that there were actually answers to the questions that plagued me. Nagging concerns were finally settled in my mind; questions that others were previously unable or unwilling to address were now answered. I rejoiced to know that when my daughter would eventually have spiritual questions of her own, I would be able to answer them. In fact, that was the main reason I became equipped: I did not want some neighborly cultist (or occultist) to beguile my little girl with a lie – promising her a good life that would actually lead to her spiritual death.
By April 1993, the Lord gave me an opportunity to share a talk with my local congregation during a Sunday evening service. My presentation was based on 1 Peter 3:15 and the basic evidences for Christianity. Yes, my first speaking opportunity as a Christian was as an apologist.
About a month after my apologetic talk, I went to our local Pregnancy Resource Center to donate baby clothes and to see if there was a way I could serve them. I met the director at the door with my bag of blessings and confessed, “Not long ago the Lord Jesus Christ saved me from my sins and from myself. Silver and gold have I not, but maybe you need someone to clean your toilets?” She gingerly informed me that they already had a person who handled that; then she suggested I attend an upcoming counselor training seminar. Through that training, I learned so much about those wonderful ministries – the women who serve in them and what they are up against. The Lord also showed me that I was not to become a PRC counselor; instead, I would train individuals who had a desire to educate their communities on matters of human life. My work would be to help impart skills that would equip them to communicate their message effectively, powerfully, and with love...
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