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Article title

The Apologetics Study Bible

General Editor Ted Cabal, Holman Bible Publishers, © 2012,
2048 pages, $39.99 (hard cover), ISBN 978-1433602856

The best way to describe this book is to say it is a modern translation of the Bible, with over 100 articles by various scholars addressing topics related to apologetics. Included in these articles are explanations of questions in apologetics, useful charts, and exposés of those the authors consider to be in error. The writers of these articles are well-known names in modern apologetics — Habermas, Hanegraaff, Moreland, Geisler, Copan, Zacharias, McDowell, Johnson, Strobel, and Craig, just to list a few of the over 100 article writers. The articles deal with a huge range of subjects. Things like the age of the earth are treated fairly even-handedly without taking a strong position. Exposés of other religions are accurate though superficial, and cover everything from Bahá'í to Christian Science. Philosophical issues such as Postmodernism, “Can God Create a Stone Too Heavy for Him to Lift?” and “the Laws of logic” are explained well. Moral issues such as abortion, demon possession, and cloning are treated delicately.

The greatest weakness of the book is in its treatment of doctrinal issues. A huge percentage of the authors have Baptist church connections and are teachers in Baptist-associated seminaries and colleges. That means their doctrine causes a heavy bias against understandings that differ from the teachings of mainline Baptists. Readers from the Restoration Movement will struggle with things such as the claim that baptism is not essential to salvation, which is included in the “Twisted Scripture” section. Also included in this section are the teachings of Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses. The “Plan of Salvation” on page xxiv, built on the acrostic use of the word “FAITH” will disturb many people not associated with the Baptist church.

We recommend this book to preachers, college students, and people deep into apologetics as a useful reference. It covers such a wide range of subjects that it will give you a broad resource on many things related to apologetics. Like any book, you have to do some sorting and discarding of teachings that are denominationally linked to the beliefs of the writers and editors.