I love Bobby Conway. I just wanted to say that up front before I tell you about his important new book. I love Bobby’s heart, his “perfect imperfection”, his humility and his transparency. I also love that he’s one of the few full-time pastors in the country who is also an accomplished Christian Case Maker. Bobby gets it. He’s both the pastor of Life Fellowship Church in Huntersville, North Carolina and the face of the One Minute Apologist video series. Bobby has been shepherding a smart, apologetically engaged church for some time now, but he will be quick to tell you that, even as the informed leader of this community, he’s not immune to doubt. Bobby is an excellent example: Even those who are fully aware of the strength of the case for Christianity are sometimes susceptible to questioning.
And that’s OK.
Bobby Conway has written a valuable book addressing this important issue. Doubting Toward Faith: The Journey to Confident Christianity is powerful because it’s incredibly thoughtful and honest. Bobby writes with the heart of a pastor and the mind of an apologist, and for this reason I want to commend the book to my readers. If you’re a fan of ColdCaseChristianity.com, you may be interested in Christian Case Making because you’re working through your own doubt. If this is the case, you’ll find Bobby’s book a blessing.
Bobby will help you think clearly about your own struggles. He acknowledges the troubling nature of doubt, but offers an insightful bit of encouragement: “…doubt is so disturbing. It splits the mind. Contrary to popular belief, intellectual doubt is not the opposite of faith; unbelief is. Doubt is in between, seesawing and dangling in the middle. Yet, make no mistake. Doubt never stays put. It’s not neutral. It makes up its mind. It’s directional. It’s going somewhere. This means a person will either doubt toward unbelief or they will doubt toward faith.” So how can we channel the directional nature of doubt? That’s what Bobby’s book is all about.
One of the best aspects of Bobby’s book is found in Chapters Four and Five where he lists a number of “Doubt Triggers”. I don’t want to give away the farm here, but these two chapters are worth the price of admission for me, as they seem to capture the source of doubt for most of us. Here’s Bobby’s list of triggers; see if any of these have been the culprit in your own battles with doubt:
Trigger 1: The Apparently Ridiculous (Elements of the Bible)
Trigger 2: Demanding Certainty
Trigger 3: Life’s Injustices
Trigger 4: Apparent Bible Contradictions
Trigger 5: The Problem of Suffering and Evil
Trigger 6: The Weight of Unconfessed Sin
Trigger 7: Internet Bloggers
Trigger 8: Failing to Radically Seek God
Trigger 9: A Misguided Relationship to Prayer
Bobby admits his own struggles along the way and his discussions of these 9 triggers is incredibly helpful (He offers a response and an overarching strategy for dealing with doubt in the following chapters). Doubting Toward Faith is written so you can leverage its content in your own spiritual journey. There are questions at the end of each chapter so you (or your small group) can think and discuss what’s been presented. Doubting Toward Faith is also the perfect companion to Bobby’s extensive work at the OneMinuteApologist.com. Read Bobby’s book, then begin watching the hundreds of videos he’s created to provide “credible answers to curious questions.” Doubt can lead you in one of two directions; Bobby Conway’s book can help you employ your doubt to strengthen what you believe. Yes, it’s possible to doubt toward faith.
For more information about the nature of Biblical faith and a strategy for communicating the truth of Christianity, please read Forensic Faith: A Homicide Detective Makes the Case for a More Reasonable, Evidential Christian Faith. This book teaches readers four reasonable, evidential characteristics of Christianity and provides a strategy for sharing Christianity with others. The book is accompanied by an eight-session Forensic Faith DVD Set (and Participant’s Guide) to help individuals or small groups examine the evidence and make the case.
J. Warner Wallace is a Dateline featured Cold-Case Detective, Senior Fellow at the Colson Center for Christian Worldview, Adj. Professor of Christian Apologetics at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University, author of Cold-Case Christianity, God’s Crime Scene, and Forensic Faith, and creator of the Case Makers Academy for kids.
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