The Solution: Questions and Answers
Last time I went over one of the major problems facing Christian students heading for college.
If you’re now thinking, “College can change my views, practically brainwashing me out of Christianity, and I won’t even know it? What am I supposed to do, just never go to college?” Thankfully, it’s not quite that bad. We have some measures that can be taken. But you are going to need to keep up with a few practices in order to deal with these issues.
1. Understand your own worldview.
The surest way to lose your Christian faith is to not fully understand it to begin with. Maybe you believe God created the earth, Jesus rose from the grave for your salvation, and that the Bible is the inspired word of God. That’s great, but do you know why that matters? Do you have evidence to support those beliefs? Do you understand what role that plays in your modern social and political views? If you do, then you should have a solid foundation and will be well equipped to identify the attack, understand it, and answer it according to your worldview. If you don’t, how are you going to handle an attack on your views if you don’t have a foundation for them in the first place?
2. Never stop asking questions.
So, your professor made a comment that bothers you. Take the advice from Greg Koukl, and ask lots and lots of questions. Drill the habit so deep that you can’t stop. What will that do? Well say your professor makes a comment like, “The church is anti-science and has caused all kinds of death and oppression.” Ask them about it. If you don’t want to disrupt the class, catch them after class or in their office time. Get them to clarify it. You might be surprised at the assertions they make without having good reasons to back them up.
If you don’t know how to respond, do your research until you understand and have better questions. And when you talk to them, do it as a student, learning from your professor, not as a debater trying to score a win. Even an angry atheist professor can’t be mad at a student for wanting to learn more. Also, as strange as it may sound, keep asking yourself questions. Is that statement true? Why do they believe that? Does that fit with what I know to be true? Does it matter if it is true? Never take their statements at face value without asking yourself a few questions about it. And if you can’t answer those questions, find somebody who can.
3. Stay connected with other Christians.
The most dangerous thing about college is that many Christian students end up on their own. If they start having these doubts and questions, but have nobody to talk to about them, the problem doesn’t go away. Even the most prepared and devout Christians can get broken down by peer pressure and fear if they don’t have any support. You need someone that can answer your questions. Find a church, a campus organization (Ratio Christi is a great one), an apologetics blog, or stay in touch with family and friends from before college. The easiest way to get eaten up by these questions is to let them keep turning over and over, and never consult someone else. Christianity has been around a long time. None of the doubts or questions are new, and we’ve spent thousands of years discussing them. If you don’t know how to answer a question, somebody else does.
College can be scary. Knowing that if you aren’t careful you can get tripped up by even the nicest people makes it even more intimidating. Thankfully, thousands of years has given us plenty of practice at handling specific objections. Keep working, pay attention, and don’t stop asking questions. If Christianity is true as we believe, it will stand up to scrutiny. But will you?
Discuss your thoughts for this post on our Facebook Group here.