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Comment: This item is in good condition. All pages and covers are readable. There are no stains or tears. Dust jacket is present if applicable. May contain small amounts of writing and/or highlighting. Spine and cover may show signs of wear. May not contain supplementary items. We ship within 1 business day. Big Hearted Books shares its profits with schools, churches and non-profit groups throughout New England. Thank you for your support!
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Handbook of Christian Apologetics Paperback – April 22, 1994

4.3 out of 5 stars 127 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"A virtual one-volume, self-study course on essential apologetics, elegantly outlined in plain English. Highly recommended." (Christian Research Journal)

About the Author

Peter J. Kreeft (Ph.D., Fordham University) is professor of philosophy at Boston College where he has taught since 1965. A popular lecturer, he has also taught at many other colleges, seminaries and educational institutions in the eastern United States. Kreeft has written more than fifty books, including The Best Things in Life, The Journey, How to Win the Culture War and, with Ronald Tacelli, Handbook of Christian Apologetics.

Ronald K. Tacelli, S.J., is associate professor of philosphy at Boston College and has published articles in the Public Affairs Quarterly and Downside Review.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 406 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Academic; Reprint edition (April 22, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830817743
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830817740
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (127 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #35,035 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is one of the books that brought me back from the brink of agnosticism. Christianity is a worldview that is based on historical evidence and rational arguments. The Handbook of Christian Apologetics provides a firm basis for defending Christianity by offering a wide range of reasons for belief. It is aimed at both believers and non-believers alike. Its goal is to help believers defend their faith and to help non-believers see the reasonableness of believing in Christianity.
Kreeft and Tacelli write in a lively and intelligent manner. Their train of thought is fairly easy to follow, althought it wouldn't hurt if the reader has a bit of knowledge of philosophical terms under her belt. The authors begin with a look at faith and reason. They note how both are vital, and that faith and reason can never contradict each other.
In the following chapters they tackle topics such as, Does God Exist? (they offer 20 arguments for the existence of God), The Problem of Evil, The Divinity of Christ, Life after Death, Objective Truth, just to name a few. Each chapter is followed by a number of discussion questions to help the reader digest and cogitate on what was just read. A bibliography is provided for those who wish to delve more deeply into each of the subjects presented. The authors confine themselves to the core beliefs common to all orthodox Christians. As a result, this is a book that can be read and used by all orthodox denominations and traditions.
One section I found particularly interesting was where they discuss how a person receives salvation by asking if a good pagan like Socrates could have been saved. Another good section (there's so many of them) is where they discuss free will in the chapter on evil.
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Format: Paperback
I think the two books that best speak to a modern audience regarding the truth of Christianity are Lewis' Mere Christianity and Kreeft and Tacelli's Handbook of Christian Apologetics. They compliment each other well. If you know a hardened skeptic, Mere Christianity can get the camel's nose under the tent, and then Handbook can mop up any remaining questions. I had developed a curiousity regarding Catholic apologetics several years ago and an interest in Kreeft's work. I was excited when Handbook was released. I was not disappointed. Lucid, accessible and comprehensive. I read and re-read sections constantly. I have used the arguments for the existence of God many times and refer to The Handbook to answer questions of skeptics in real life and in on-line correspondence. A must for any Christian library. Can't praise it enough. If you like this but want more depth, you might want to read his Summa of the Summa. Very difficult but worthwhile. It's used to train priests in many seminaries.
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Format: Paperback
Although I am not Catholic and did not agree with every one of the authors' conclusions, I must say that this book is a good overall defense of the historic Christian church. I appreciate that these men were Christian first and Catholic second, and so there were no real noticeable diatribes on the issues that could separate Catholics and Protestants. Their reasoning was extremely sound, in the vast majority of cases, and I have even used some of their information (i.e. 20 reasons for the existence of God) in lecture notes in a Christian apologetics class that I teach. A book like this and When Skeptics Ask by Geisler work well side by side on the old bookshelf, and it's a wonderful experience to compare the two books on a number of parallel issues. It's well worth the read, for both the Christian and the skeptic who has never challenged himself to compare his beliefs with the teachings of Christianity.
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellent book for discussion groups (includes great, thought-provoking discussion questions at the end of each chapter) and an excellent overview of Christian apologetics with a good list of recommended reading in the appendix. Also, the chapters on Hell and Heaven are perhaps the best I've read (even though the information in these chapters is based mostly on quotes from C.S. Lewis) On the downside, being that the authors are both professors of philosophy, I would have expected more information about reasoning, logical fallacies and the nature and limitations of proof. I think the majority of apologetic problems can be dealt with if people understood what consistutes a valid argument to begin with as well as the common fallacies BOTH believers and skeptics fall for. Also, some of the objections they grapple with in the book are dismissed a little too easily --- especially with the arguments for God's existence. While many of their replies may be effective for someone with little philsophical knowledge, they are often too simplistic for answering more sophisticated and philosophically-informed objections. This is a great introductory book, but readers seriously interested in apologetics and in answering intellegent objections to the Christian faith, will need to dig much deeper into these issues.
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This book is fairly comprehensive in scope, and yet detailed in presentation. The topics covered range from the nature of God to Salvation. Each topic is presented and then disected, and rational explanations, often step by step, are given as to why Christians believe it, and why it must be so.

The writing is very clear and engaging, and I found the book not only extremely informative but also enjoyable to read. I suppose you can read it straight through as I did or use it as a reference when questions arise.
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