A number of years ago, Lee Strobel’s Case for Christ made a huge impact on the Christian community and on skeptics. Why? It was not because it was answering the hard questions for the first time. There were many other books available with more detailed and complex answers to the questions that are out there. But Lee Strobel was able to take the information already available and package it in an engaging format based on his experience as a journalist.
Since that time, there have been many excellent apologetics books, especially on the academic side. But finally there is another book that is effective in engaging the imagination and drawing the reader in beyond just good information.
J. Warner Wallace’s first book, Cold-Case Christianity, is the apologetics book that we have been waiting for. Wallace has many years of experience as a cold-case detective. It was through the skills that he attained in his profession that he came to believe in the truth of Christianity. Coming from a place of deep skepticism, Wallace needed evidence that was compelling. In this book, Wallace shares this evidence.
Cold-Case Christianity is filled with the apologetic resources that you would expect. Wallace presents solid reasons for believing in the truth of Christianity. He demonstrates that the Gospels are good historical documents that need to be taken seriously. Wallace is not afraid to confront critics and he interacts effectively with their criticisms. The reader of this book will be equipped with good information that can be used in responding to skeptical friends.
However, the real value of this book is that Wallace goes beyond teaching us facts, he teaches us how to think. Wallace takes us into the world of the cold-case detective. He shares stories from cases that he has worked on, explaining what worked and what did not. These stories are very interesting and they drew me right into the book. But more than entertaining stories, Wallace’s experience helps us to know how to deal with evidence and interpret information. The skills he imparts are helpful for working through biblical data but also equips us how to interact with any claims that we come across. Each chapter concludes with a specific tool for our “call out bag,” that set of skills that we always need with us to sift through the mix of truth and falsehood that we often encounter.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. After having read many apologetics books, it can be a chore to read another book with the same old presentation. But this book puts the information together in such a fresh and interesting way, it was a pleasure to read. I would recommend this book to three groups of people. This book is good for experienced apologists, who need to be reminded of the real life application of apologetics. This book is good for Christians who are just getting started in apologetics and who need a resource that is clear and accessible. However, the group that might benefit the most from this book are the interested skeptics. Wallace makes the book so interesting that the reader will not feel like they are plodding through a theology book. The detective stories will hold the attention, while not compromising on the biblical arguments for the truth of Christianity. I highly recommend this book for all three of these groups.