Reasons to Believe

The Impact of Public Christian Thinkers

Many factors can buoy a person’s faith in Christ and trust in the truth of historic Christianity. For example, abductive logical reasoning (which reveals Christianity’s explanatory power and scope), Christianity’s position as a unique, viable competitor among world religions, and the New Testament’s historical account of Jesus Christ all build a foundation for believers’ confidence in their faith. They certainly did in mine.

In addition to these reasons to believe, I have found that the respected intellectuals who publicly embrace the truth of historic Christianity also provide fortifying confirmation for believers’ faith and for truth seekers. When scholars from various disciplines openly identify themselves as believers in Christ they serve as important encouragers and role models to many Christians and others who may never meet them in this life.

As a young philosophy student I made the surprising discovery that a significant number of today’s leading academic philosophers are publicly professing Christians. In fact, a genuine renaissance of Christian philosophy in academic centers across America has occurred in the last fifty years.1 During my student days I attended philosophy conferences where I was privileged to meet and talk with such distinguished thought leaders as Alvin Plantinga, William Wainwright, and Stephen Davis.

I was deeply impacted to know that some of today’s best philosophical minds had wrestled with various faith challenges and remained convinced of historic Christianity’s veracity. These experiences helped me grow in my appreciation that as a believer in Christ I belong to an intellectual community—and this impressive community of saints includes some of the greatest minds of both the past and the present.

Subjects: Church Fathers

Kenneth R. Samples

I believe deeply that “all truth is God’s truth.” As an RTB scholar I have a great passion to help people understand and see the truth and relevance of Christianity’s truth-claims. Read more about Kenneth Samples.

1. See William Lane Craig, “God Is Not Dead Yet,” Christianity Today (July 2008): 22–27.