Christian apologetics is the field of study concerned with the systematic defense of Christianity. The term “apologetic” comes from the Greek word apologia, which means in defense of; therefore a person involved in Christian or Bible Apologetics is a defender of Christianity. Someone who engages in Christian apologetics is called a “Christian apologist”. Christian apologetics have taken many forms over the centuries, starting with Paul of Tarsus, including renowned writers such as Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas, and continuing today with the modern Christian community through authors such as Karl Keating and Jimmy Akin. Apologists have based their defense of Christianity on favoring interpretations of historical evidence, philosophical arguments, scientific investigation, and other avenues.
This Classical Greek term appears in the Koine (i.e. common) Greek of the New Testament. The apostle Paul employed the term “apologia” in his trial speech to Festus and Agrippa when he said, “I make my defense” (Acts 26:2). In the English language, the word apology, derived from the Greek word “apologia”, usually refers to asking for forgiveness for an action that is open to blame. Christian apologetics are meant, however, to argue that Christianity is reasonable and in accordance with the evidence that can be examined, analogous to the use of the term in the Apology of Socrates, written by Plato.
“but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,” (1 Peter 3:15).