I was listening to Van Hale's interview today that he had some time ago with Shawn McCraney. I spoke in a thread at one time about how the church seems weak at times because it is always on the defense when it comes to criticism and apoligetics. If you listen to this interview. You will see Van Hale understands it, and by putting McCraney on his heels and turning the tables and making him defend his position, he takes him to the woodshed. Which does not do anything other then show that defending a position, even a true and strong position is very difficult and appears very weak at times to a listener.
I think at the recent panel discussion that Scott Gordon appeared weaker in strength of argument then John Dehlin. I think Many apoligetics appear weak in some of their positions simply because they are on defense. Once we learn that our position is stronger when we are on offense we appear in much better position. Listen to 20 minutes of the Van Hale interview beggining at 6 minutes:00 seconds.
If every evangelical and any other critic were put on defense we would find listeners to any debate finding more strength in the LDS position without even really discussing the LDS position.
An analogy is US defense of terrorism. The terrorist while weaker in technology and numbers only has to succed once to display mjor weaknesses in the US defense. While stronger the US has to be win and and be perfect in it's defense each and every time. It has to be perfect to win.
In regards to putting others on defense: Anti's play on this framework constantly and very effectively. I wish more of Latter-Day Saints who have faith crisis would recognize this. Debates and discussions take on very different tones and give very different impressions based on whether one is defending a position or criticizing a position and many times has much less to do with the strength of a position and much more to do with whether one is on offense or defense.
McCraney, like others, builds Strawmen and Hale erased them before McCraney could even begin to have his way with them.
What do you think about the nature of apoligetics and perhaps trying to gear it more towards an offensive approach?
Edited by DBMormon, 06 August 2012 - 04:00 PM.