Today – February 17, 2012 – marks the beginning of a new project. I have been mulling over it for some months and have decided to begin writing on the subject: the glory of God as the ultimate apologetic. In my opinion this is the greatest and most satisfactory answer to questions such as why is there evil, pain and suffering, why is Christ the only way to heaven, etc.
I am both surprised and dismayed to find little to nothing on this wonderful subject even on Christian apologist websites. Christian apologetics in general tend to answer some areas very well, such as creation v. evolution (I am an “old earth” Intelligent-Design creationist) and other issues of science and history (the resurrection of Jesus and the trustworthiness of the Bible, for example). But with the more difficult philosophical questions such as evil and suffering they tend to fall back on the free will of the creature rather than look to the ultimate plan and purpose of God.
A notable exception is Jonathan Edwards’s The End for Which God Made the World. I would recommend it, except that his dissertation is quite lengthy and difficult for most present-day readers. Nevertheless I plan to build my project on many of the ideas of which he wrote. The central biblical text and ruling authority for my work will be Romans 8:18-25:
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
For we know that the whole creation thas been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.