Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Book Review: "Tactics"
Tactics: A Game Plan For Discussing Your Christian Faith
By Gregory Koukl
Greg Koukl has written a fantastic book for conversational apologetics. Koukl starts out this book by explaining that the intent of this book is not to be manipulative or make the other person look like a fool in conversation. He explains the importance of a coherent worldview and the importance of being able to identify incoherence. He provides a defense of the reasons for being able to provide a defense for the Christian faith. All of which are very important to anyone who wishes to engage someone in conversation about their faith. Koukl then starts the reader on his list of ways to progress through conversation. Before Koukl describes a tactic, how to use it, and how not to use it; he explains why each tactic is important.
As with any conversation, you need to make sure you have as much information and understanding as possible about the situation. He starts with this, what he calls the "Columbo Tactic". Koukl shows how his "Columbo tactic" can be used to keep you in control of the conversation and to keep the burden of proof on the one making the claims. Next he discusses tactics that will help you discover the flaws and inconsistencies in your opposition's worldview. He talks about how to find views that "self destruct" or "commit suicide". Koukl then discusses some of the other fallacies that one may discover and how to deal with them.
Koukl covers how to deal with difficult and belligerent people thoughout the book, but focuses a bit more near the end. He concludes the book by once again, reminding us that tactics are not to be used to manipulate people into believing what we believe. He also reminds us that even though these tactics are powerful, that we should not have an attitude of arrogance or just be looking for a fight.
I highly recommend this book for anyone who wishes to engage people about their faith. Tactics emphasizes that you do not need to know everything about every topic to be an effective ambassador for Christ. The book is not technical in any way and is an easy read but will make you stop and think many times.
Here's a few videos of Greg Koukl describing some of his tactics: