In April 2015, Christianity Today published an article which in their print magazine was called “Unexpected Defenders.” It introduced a handful of women who are making inroads into Christian apologetics, detailing their impact in a largely male-dominated field.
It is noteworthy that the focus of the article was on their achievements rather than to gush over the new wave of female apologists. In the May 2015 print magazine, some did express irritation in their letters-to-the-editor over the use of the word “unexpected.” Perhaps they were right to complain. It does seem to make too much of the rarity of women in apologetics. As another reader pointed out, women were the first to hear and believe the truth of the resurrection as told in the gospels. Is our emergence into prominence so unexpected?
But let us not be over-sensitive. The point is, Ordway, Pearcey, et al are in fact a minority, but whether this is because women have simply been rejected in their past attempts to publish, speak, or teach apologetics and theology, or whether we have been less interested in the subject than our male peers, is debatable.
Regardless, we female apologists, theologians, Bible scholars, and philosophers do exist. Do we, as Christianity Today suggests, have a new angle on apologetics which will bring the world into a new apologetic breakthrough? In the article, Kelly Monroe of Veritas Forum states,
“Women bring a deep relational intelligence to apologetics. They bring a sense that biblical truth is the highest love for human beings.”
Is this true? Do we have an edge that a world full of subjectivity and feelings might respond better to? Could it be argued from this that those who care only about facts and logic can go back to the bespectacled, bearded theologians of the male species, and the sensitive ones who want to “feel” truth may come to us?
Does it also therefore follow that we ought to use this angle, and avoid making facts, logic, and sound reasoning our foundation? I think not. I hope not. The world needs both logic and relationship, and Christianity offers both. Might we not, as women, offer both?
What do you think?