The Institute for Christian Apologetics is a division of ACTS Seminaries of Trinity Western University. It strives to provide graduate level education and relevant training in Christian apologetics in a vital learning community. Our aim is to equip believers to respond thoughtfully to the challenges Christians face. Apologetics is the defense of the Christian Faith and involves presenting Christian truth claims with relevance and credibility to today's culture.
What is Apologetics?
Apologetics is a discipline which is concerned with making a case for the truth of Christian faith and also defending it against challenges of falsehood or inconsistency. It is, by necessity, a continually changing discipline as it seeks to respond to the evolving dominant thought patterns of culture.
The purpose of the Institute is to train Christian scholars, leaders and lay people to communicate the Christian faith in a way that is accurate, appealing and defensible. The Institute is helping develop godly leaders who will equip and encourage people to communicate and explain the Christian faith. The end result is a holistic preparation for ministry which enables students to view the world through a postmodern lens.
A highly important benefit of studying apologetics at ACTS is that personal faith is encouraged and strengthened. Students explore and research thoughtful, biblically sound responses to their own questions as well as issues raised by other writers, thinkers, skeptics, and classmates. Additionally:
- Develop the ability to competently address key concerns in culture with which Christians and non-Christians alike wrestle.
- Interact with and research contemporary ethical and philosophical issues within the context of biblical, systematic and historical theology.
- Sharpen your skills in articulating and defending Christian faith while deepening your understanding of the theological disciplines.
- Acquire a well-grounded understanding of Christian thought, including an awareness of the means and methods Christians have used in both historical and postmodern times to respond to secular and religious perspectives about Christianity.
Academic Degree Programs:
The Institute provides academic instruction for graduate students through apologetics tracks in three Master's degree programs:
Master of Theological Studies - Contemporary Apologetics Track:
Students in the M.T.S. apologetics track are typically college graduates or individuals currently in vocational ministry. This area of study allows you to engage in intensive interdisciplinary work and focused research in Contemporary Apologetics and provides a foundation for pursuing teaching or post-graduate studies.
Master of Arts in Christian Studies - Contemporary Apologetics Track
Students in the M.A.C.S. apologetics track are typically interested in gaining a foundation for effectively communicating and defending Christian truth claims within post-modern and pluralistic cultures.
Master of Divinity - Contemporary Apologetics Specialization
Students in the M. Div apologetics specialization are typically preparing for or are currently engaged in vocational pastoral ministry. Their focus is speaking into the culture and equipping believers to understand and articulate their faith in the marketplaces of life.
In addition to formal study in apologetics through courses we offer training in apologetics and cultural engagement for members of the broader community through public seminars. This is an exciting training provides opportunities for interaction which is not readily available elsewhere.
Topics covered in past seminars include:
- Religious Pluralism
- The Historical Jesus
- Understanding Islam
- Ethics of Human Dignity
- Apologetics and the Arts
- Apologetics that Engages the Imagination and the Mind
- An Apologetic Response to the New Social Reality
Paul Chamberlain, Ph.D.
Director of the Institute for Christian Apologetics
Dr. Chamberlain holds a Master of Divinity from Trinity International University and a Ph.D. from Marquette University. He has authored several books, most recently
Why People Don't Believe (Baker 2011), and published numerous articles in the fields of apologetics, ethics, and philosophy of religion.
In addition to directing the Institute of Christian Apologetics, Paul has served as a Professor of Contemporary Apologetics at ACTS, and the Program Chair for the Master of Arts in Christian Studies. Prior to teaching at ACTS he was a Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Trinity Western University for ten years. During part of that time he also held the position of Canadian Executive Director of Ravi Zacharias Ministries. He has participated widely in public debates and has made guest appearances on numerous radio and TV programs. He frequently presents seminars and lectures in churches, universities and other community forums. Dr. Chamberlain has also served in various pastoral and teaching capacities in local churches.