Apologetics: Advanced

2018 European Apologetics Network: Advanced Track

What did the Apostle Paul do when Pre-Christian Europe was pagan, relativistic, and pluralistic? He did apologetics among his contemporaries. Paul went to the Jews arguing from the Old Testament Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ. Paul also went to pagan Greeks and used their literature and cultural artifacts to argue that the "unknown God" has been revealed and proclaimed in Jesus.

21st century Europe is in a state very similar to Paul's time. Just as Paul confronted the marketplace of ideas in his generation, Europe today needs gifted apologists who can demonstrate that Christianity is true and relevant. Therefore, the vision of the European Apologetics Network is to train a new generation of apologists who can stand in today's marketplace of ideas in the way that Paul did in his generation. Our desire is to develop apologists who will testify to the truth of the Gospel with wisdom, versatility, and courage in their efforts to persuade their contemporaries.

Applicants should be those with evangelistic or apologetic gifts who have previously attended the European Leadership Forum Apologetics Network: Foundational Track and the European Evangelism Network. The purpose of the Network is to train, mentor, equip, and resource those evangelists and apologists who are seeking to communicate the Gospel in their local communities. This Network will be led by Bruce Little. Prior preparation will be set for all applicants.



Bruce A. Little has master’s degrees in Apologetics and Religion and a PhD in Philosophy of Religion and a DMin in Apologetics. Presently, he serves as Senior Professor of Philosophy and director of the Francis A. Schaeffer Collection at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he has been on faculty since 2001. Since 1995, he has travelled widely in Europe and Asia, lecturing in universities, teaching in a variety of schools and presenting papers at conferences. He has published in various professional journals, edited several books, either authored or co-authored six books and contributed chapters in several books the last being God and Evil published by InterVarsity Press, 2013.



Richard Weikart is professor of modern European history at California State University, Stanislaus, and Senior Fellow at Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture.  He has published six books, including most recently The Death of Humanity: And the Case for Life and Hitler’s Religion.   He has also published extensively on the history of evolutionary ethics, eugenics, social Darwinism, euthanasia, and scientific racism.  He has been featured in several documentaries, including Ben Stein’s Expelled, as well as on many radio programs.  He recently produced a documentary to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation called Exploring the Reformation and Revivals in Germany.


Amy Orr-Ewing is the Director of the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics and the Europe, Middle East and Africa Director of RZIM. She leads a team of inspirational apologist-evangelists and speaks around the world on how the Christian faith answers the deepest questions of life. Over the last twenty years Amy has spoken on university campuses, including Oxford, Cambridge, Vienna, Hong Kong, Phoenix, Massachusetts, in the Speakers Rooms and Chapel at the UK Parliament, on Capitol Hill and to West Wing staff at the White House. Amy speaks in banks, businesses, and consultancy firms, as well as churches and conferences. She gained a first-class degree in Theology and a DPhil (doctorate) from the University of Oxford and is an Associate Tutor at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford. Amy is the co-founder of REBOOT, a youth Apologetics initiative aimed at helping young people think deeply about faith, which now runs in countries all over the world. Amy is married to Frog and helps lead Latimer Minster, a church plant and community on a farm in Buckinghamshire, and they have three children.


David Novak (M.Th) is president of the Czech Brethren Church, which is the largest Czech evangelical denomination. He also teaches philosophy, ethics for helping professions, and missiology at Prague Evangelical Seminary. Prior to that, he led a denominational youth ministry for 16 years before pastoring a local church in Prague. While working in the church he also taught philosophy at several high schools. He has written several books about contemporary culture and Christianity, and he contributed to Tim Keller´s book Center Church Europe.  He studied theology at Prague Evangelical Seminary, missiology at the University of Wales, and philosophy at Charles University. He has two sons.


Paul Copan (Ph.D. Philosophy, Marquette University) is the Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics at Palm Beach Atlantic University, West Palm Beach, Florida. For six years, he served as president of the Evangelical Philosophical Society.  He is author and editor of over thirty books, including works such as The Rationality of TheismThe Routledge Companion to Philosophy of ReligionCreation out of Nothing, Philosophy of Religion: Classic and Contemporary Issues, The Zondervan Dictionary of Christianity and ScienceA Little Book for New Philosophers, and The Cosmological Argument (a two-volume anthology). He has also contributed essays to over thirty books, both scholarly and popular, and has authored a number of articles in professional journals. In 2017, he was a Visiting Scholar at Oxford University. Paul and his wife, Jacqueline, have six children, and they reside in West Palm Beach, Florida. His website is www.paulcopan.com.


Erkki Vesa Rope Kojonen has been a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Helsinki Faculty of Theology since 2014. His work is on the intersection between theology, philosophy, and the natural sciences. He is the author of many philosophical and theological papers on these subjects as well as the book The Intelligent Design Debate and the Temptation of Scientism (2016), a full-length philosophical and theological analysis of the arguments used in the ID debate by all sides. He is currently working on a research project on new theological engagements with biological science. He is also the editor of the Finnish science and theology magazine Areiopagi.fi. Find out more about his publications at http://blogs.helsinki.fi/ekojonen/other-publications/


Khaldoun A. Sweis is the former Chair and currently Associate Professor of Philosophy at Olive-Harvey College in Chicago and serves as tutor in philosophy with Oxford University in England.  After losing his son Enoch, who died in his arms, he had a paradigm shift in how he does and applies apologetics, his passion, to his life and ministry.  As a Jordanian born American, his experience entails teaching philosophy, theology, and apologetics for over a decade as well as speaking at conferences both nationally and abroad such as Hong Kong, Romania, Australia, and England. He has three books including Debating Christian Theism, co-edited with Chad Meister and JP Moreland (Oxford University Press, 2013) and Christian Apologetics: An Anthology of Primary Sources co-edited with Chad Meister (Zondervan, 2011). He recently completed Killing God: Addressing the Seven Most Common Objections from the New Atheists (CP, 2016) and coming out soon is Logically Faithful: Navigating Life’s Darkest Moments through Evidence for your Faith. He is a member of the American Philosophical Association and the Evangelical Philosophical Society. Khaldoun’s greatest achievement is getting Luciana to marry him and being the father of his two precious children, AnaKaterina Cosette and Daniel Zacharias. His goal is to help equip believers to deal with suffering and navigate life through the incredible evidence we have in Christ. His website is www.LogicallyFaithful.com, where you will find podcasts, blogs, and videos designed to equip believers and lovingly challenge skeptics.


Stefan Gustavsson is a member of the European Leadership Forum Steering Committee. He is the director for Apologia – Centre for Christian Apologetics and makes his home in Stockholm. He was the founding General Secretary for the Swedish Evangelical Alliance. Stefan travels widely with apologetic teaching and training and is often involved in university evangelism and public debates. He is the author of several books on Christian apologetics and the Christian mind. Stefan is married to Ingrid and they have three grown children.



Day 1

Hitler’s Religion: Christian Apologetics Faces the Hitler Question
Richard Weikart

Many atheists, including Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens, routinely accuse Christianity of complicity in Nazism and the Holocaust.  Many even claim that Hitler was a Christian.  Weikart will clearly show that Hitler was opposed to Christianity and wanted to undermine the churches.  Indeed, Hitler’s worldview was pantheistic and was shaped more by secular influences than by Christianity.


The Apologetic Method of Dorothy L Sayers
Amy Orr-Ewing

Dorothy L. Sayers was a contemporary of C.S. Lewis and a brilliant writer, broadcaster, and speaker. In this session we will examine her life and her approach to theology and apologetics. The material will be drawn from my doctoral thesis examining the work of Dorothy L. Sayers and her apologetic impact.

Day 2

The Most Effective Strategies in Public Speaking to WOW
Khaldoun Sweis

Do you have a message you want to share with others but aren’t sure how? Would you like to communicate more confidently in front of an audience? Are you a teacher looking for ways to improve?  Drawing on lessons from the greatest public speakers in history, this workshop will help you to:

  • Learn the basics of effective and successfully proven methods to speaking publicly
  • Discover the power of body language
  • Understand the supremacy of story telling


What Is the Evidence of Purpose in Nature?
Rope Kojonen

Many believe that evolution shows nature to be without design. A common way to defend design is to criticize the scientific and philosophical basis of evolutionary theory. In this presentation, Dr. Kojonen argues that the evidence of purpose in nature is robust, including the fine-tuning and rationality of the laws of nature, as well as biological teleology. He shows how this evidence may also be defended as part of a "natural theology" (Richard Swinburne) or "design discourse" (Alvin Plantinga) by evolutionary creationists or theistic evolutionists, who do not reject the viability of evolution. However, doing so requires rejecting the idea of scientism - the belief that science is the only way to know about reality.

Day 3

The Naturalists Are Declaring the Glory of God: How Atheists Help Make the Case for God
Paul Copan

Naturalism—whose three fundamental tenets are materialism, determinism, and scientism—tends to be the default worldview in the academy. Yet when it comes to accounting for key features of the universe and human experience itself (the universe’s beginning and fine-tuning, consciousness, rationality, moral responsibility, etc.), it simply lacks the kind of resources that theism has in much greater measure. Furthermore, this inadequacy is reinforced by leading naturalists themselves, who actually contribute weighty reasons for God’s existence.


A Loving God AND Judgement & Hell: Isn’t That a Glaring Contradiction?
Stefan Gustavsson

According to the Bible, God is “compassionate and gracious … abounding in love.” Yet the same revelation speaks about a final judgement with eternal consequences. That is a perspective that contemporary Europeans find incredible, offensive, and deeply immoral. Can we today explain and defend the claim that the Son of Man – who did not come to judge the world – now is coming back to do precisely that: to judge the living and the dead?

Day 4

Four Reasons Why Communicating Christianity is Increasingly Difficult
Bruce Little

This talk examines four reasons Christian are finding it increasingly difficult to communicate the truth claims of Christ to those in the West. It considers the cultural shift in four areas: (1) conversation, (2) rational thought, (3) commitment, and (4) a view of the sacred. Each one is viewed against the backdrop of the Gospel. The talk concludes with some suggestions for overcoming these cultural obstacles.


Struggles Most Apologists Face and How to Overcome Them
David Novak

One of the best apologetic arguments ever is Paul´s brilliant speech at the Areopagus. There, we see a smart man who is able to bring great culturally-rooted arguments. All seems clear and easy. The problem is that when we stand on our own “Areopagus,” sometimes we feel unprepared; we realize that we are arguing with people who are smarter than us; we struggle with low self-esteem; or we become aware that our arguments have certain limits and that we are only able to bring good, but not great, answers. Every apologist must struggle not only with his opponents, but also with his or her own inner self. What are these inner fights? How do we overcome them?


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