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On Guard: Defending Your Faith with Reason and Precision
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On Guard: Defending Your Faith with Reason and Precision

4.3 of 5 stars 4.30  ·  rating details  ·  828 ratings  ·  78 reviews
Renowned scholar William Lane Craig offers a readable, rich training manual for defending the Christian faith.

This concise guide is filled with illustrations, sidebars, and memorizable steps to help Christians stand their ground and defend their faith with reason and precision. In his engaging style, Dr. Craig offers four arguments for God’s existence, defends the histori
Paperback, 288 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by David C. Cook
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Mandy J. Hoffman

If you have ever wondered what apologetics is or if God even exists, then On Guard is the book for you to read. William Lane Craig writes a fairly easy-to-understand book in a fun and easy-reading style that walks you through both of these questions and many more. Besides the good content, the sidebar definitions, quotes, pictures, facts, and the Talk About It boxes make this a wonderfully interactive book.

While this book would be for older teens and adults, and take time to read and p
I highly recommend this book (and the companion DVD) for a small group study. The science chapters are challenging, especially if you aren't mathematically & scientifically inclined, but the results are well worth the effort. I've already used a handful of his points speaking with friends to great effect and my group isn't done with the book yet!
Author: William Lane Craig
Publisher: David C. Cook
March 2010
ISBN: 978-1-4347-6488-1
Genre: Inspirational/apologetics

Most people will probably never defend their faith to an atheist, but the Bible says that we should always be prepared. And in this day and age, there are many attacks from the “new atheists,” internet infidels, and all manner of Biblical bashers. With this in mind, there is an increased need for evangelical Christians to be trained to defend their faith.

William Lane
Jonathan B
The material is good, save for those parts where his Arminianism and Molinism shine through (chapters 7 and 10). Here you’ll find the usual statements (note: I have the vyrso version of the book, which doesn’t have page numbers, but all the quotes below are from chapter 10):

“[...] in a sense, God doesn’t send anybody to hell. His Desire is that everyone be saved [...] God has no choice but to give us what we deserve. God will not send us to hell-but we shall send ourselves.”
Except the Bible does
Cathy Cooper
Dr. Craig mentions in his book that if Christians have good arguments in support of their faith, they are less apt to become quarrelsome or upset. Hmmm....this is very telling. I guess Christians did not have very good arguments during the Dark Ages, and when Christians took over the Americas from the Indians. Why didn't they use their "arguments" then too, instead of the rack, or the noose, or the rifle, and so forth?? Well...when they got to Africa, and explained Christianity to the natives, t ...more
Clinton Wilcox
An excellent introduction to several good arguments for God's existence. This book is great for high school and college age kids who don't have the philosophical training behind them. For college graduates and the philosophically-minded, Reasonable Faith would probably be a better choice. But this is a great book to start with.
Kerry Nietz
This is probably one of the best apologetics I’ve ever read. Thoughtful, concise, and logical—it presents a handful of reasoned arguments for Christianity that are very difficult to repudiate.

For each argument, the author goes the extra mile of presenting some of the most common refutations of those arguments, along with counterarguments against those refutations. It illustrates how thoroughly Craig has researched both sides of the issue. He isn’t preparing you to simply preach at someone, he’s
With the amount of information at our finger tips, it is easy for the Christian to come across arguments for why Christianity is a false religion. So it is good to see a book like this that gives Christians clear arguments for their faith in an easily accessible manner. In truth, it is book an apologetics book and an introduction book to logic and philosophy as Dr. Craig uses the tools of Western philosophy to make both positive and negative cases for Christianity covering topics such as the ori ...more
An excellent, though basic, primer on Christian apologetics, particularly for those without a background in rhetoric, logic or argumentation. The first half of the book is useful for any believer, Christian or not. The second half of the book deals specifically with evidentiary arguments for Christianity specifically. Craig's explanations of the kalam and fine-tuning logical proofs are particularly enlightening and his discussion of his own conversion are quite interesting.

Anyone who has seen C
Jacob Rutledge
Craig is one of the, if not THE, most imminent Christian philosopher and apologist today. His credentials are without parallel in both academics and experience. Craig brings all of those qualities to the table in this fantastic apologetic work, "On Guard." I not only love the material in the book but the publishing format. There are a variety of illustrations to help explain a particular point. The flow charts at the end of the chapter are a great way of summarizing the arguments. There are wide ...more
Scott Kennedy
I read this as I was interested to see whether it would be worth reading with a group of high school students. On the whole I thought it was a very good introduction to apologetics and some of the arguments for God's existence. Highlights for me were the kalam argument and the moral argument. The section on Jesus' death an resurrection was also very thorough and convincing. I did not quite agree with his work on suffering. He talks a lot about free will as the major reason for suffering and supp ...more
Daniel Rodger
A fantastic read and introduction to the apologetic and philosophical work of William Lane Craig. Definitely a work I shall be recommending to Christian friends who are looking to grow in confidence and knowledge in preparation for sharing the Gospel with friends and colleagues.
Matt Lawrence
WLC's layman book On Guard is perfect for people studying apologetics for the first time. WLC is able to convey each argument as simple and easily as possible without getting into the philosophical jargon, that can be found in his more advance books. WLC links these arguments with his own personal story and his strive to look for the creator. WLC implements this so well that it can be very entertaining just reading how he became a Christian and a Philosopher. On Guard is a great book and definit ...more
Jared Totten
William Lane Craig is considered to be one of the top Christian apologists alive today. So when he writes a book on apologetics, I expect it to be well-argued and -reasoned. However, I did not expect it to be so accessible to the average reader.

Yet On Guard, released this week by David C. Cook Publishers, is just that and a whole lot more. This book is ready-made for undergraduate classes, church small groups or any Christian looking for an introduction to the key arguments for Christianity.

More today than ever before Christians need to be prepared to give a defense of their faith – this is where Apologetics and the book, On Guard, come into play. Most of us don’t know how to defend our faith and when the time comes and we have to we tend to look sheepishly away, get offended, or reply harshly to those questioning us. Thankfully with William Lane Craig’s book this no longer has to be a problem – we can confidently be prepared to give the reason for our faith and our Hope.

Written in
If someone were to ask you, a Christian, the following questions, would you be able to give good answers?

1. Why think that God exists? Are there good reasons for thinking that he really exists?
2. Why think that Jesus is God? Are there good reasons for thinking that he really is God incarnate?
3. What about the existence of evil and suffering in the world? Doesn't that prove that God doesn't exist?
4. Isn't belief in God merely wishful thinking?
5. Isn't belief in Jesus' resurrection a matter of bli
Court Ellyn
I'm giving this 3 stars merely for the fact that I don't think it's accessible to just everyone. Our small group had a tough time with much of the material. In the beginning, it became clear that one would have to understand the laws of physics, astronomy, etc. along with some philosophical and mathematical scenarios to be able to argue these points effectively -- and that your "opponent" would have to understand them just as well to be able to grasp your point and concede the argument. We had a ...more
Brent McCulley
Dr. Craig has written an enormously helpful handbook and study-tool, that is a compilation of decades of his laborious work in defending the Christian faith apologetically - written for the layman, in that it is easy to understand, accessible, and also engaging. As I've been a big fan of Dr. Craig and Reasonable Faith for some time now, I've watched almost twenty of his previous debates with numerous worthy philosophers, historians, physicists, ethicist, humanists, Muslims, and atheists, spannin ...more
William Lane Craig is a very sophisticated apologist for Christianity and this book is a very sophisticated argument first, for the existence of God and, second, for the historicity of Jesus Christ and his resurrection.
The philosophical arguments for the existence of “God” were the most interesting and compelling in the book. Craig is a professional philosopher who studied under John Hick. The topic of his PhD was Liebniz's cosmological argument for the existence of “God”. And his careful and ar
Ryan Manns
I actually struggled with whether or not I should give this book 4 or 5 stars but I decided to go with 5. I thought perhaps 4 stars because William Lane Craig presents many arguments that have already been discussed in his (and many others) previous works. So perhaps half the book isn't necessarily new and probably not as in depth as some of us would like. However, I opted to go with 5 stars because I felt he did an excellent job of introducing the main arguments for God and explaining why they ...more
"On Guard", according to Dr. Craig, is a book meant to be studied and not simply read. This is an important point for the reader to always keep in mind while progressing through the text. Treating this work as a textbook is the only way one pulls the full richness from its pages.

Over the course of 10 chapters, Dr. Craig makes several cumulative arguments for belief in God and the truth of the claims of the Christian faith. The scope begins at its broadest -- the universe -- and narrows down to t
Josiah DeGraaf
This book utilizes a lot of different arguments for Christianity, and, in many ways, is a more philosophical and scientific look at why Christianity has to be correct. As a result, I very much enjoyed the arguments he used, and, while some I'd heard before, I also learned a good many new things as well. That being said, for the average layperson on the street, I'm not sure this would help make for effective evangelism per se. Good to know how to deal with more smart, educated critics of Christia ...more
Luke Brown
Philosophical, scientific, mathematic, logical arguments for the creation of the universe, earth, and life by God, and the existence and resurrection of Jesus. These can not only strengthen the faith of believers, but help them defend their faith and point out the errors and inconsistencies of the arguments of non-believers and skeptics. I love arguments like this and it is important for Christians to engage the world and culture to create a climate that continues to consider Christianity as a v ...more
Michael Cash
This is a great introduction to the philosophic arguments for the existence of God that I have read. Others have already said it better than I can: "This concise training manual by a renowned scholar is filled with illustrations, sidebars, and memorizable steps to help you stand your ground and defend your faith with reason and precision. In his engaging style, Dr. William Lane Craig offers four arguments for God's existence, defends the historicity of Jesus' personal claims and resurrection, ad ...more
Daniel Duane
William Lane Craig is an apologist of the highest calibre that I've come across so far. He is able to break down complex philosophical topics down for the layman to understand. He is hyper-logical. This books helped a lot in my understand of apologetics in providing the key points of defending the Christian faith through logic and reason. What I love about how WLC writes is that he always list the premises and conclusions, and then tackle each premise one by one. Questions from Talk About It are ...more
Too self-contradicting, too arrogant. If Craig is really the greatest apologist of our generation (as the book echoes repeatedly) then modern Christianity is in some serious trouble. My opinion hit bottom when Craig dismisses Christian scholars who take a critical approach to studying NT/early church texts because they apparently just hype of their credentials too much... Craig should re-read the first chapter of his book.
Chris Stewart
Great primer on Christian apologetics

As someone who is interested in sharing my faith with people from different backgrounds, I found the arguments and reasoning presented in this text beneficial. This is an excellent place to start for thinking through the arguments for and against God's existence and his revelation in the world through Jesus Christ.
Great book on apologetics, Craig walks the reader through the main arguments and supplies some simple means of remembering them. Predictably, I didn't accept all of his theology, particularly the piece on how people will be punished not for their sins committed throughout their lives because, Craig tells us, these have been atoned for in Christ's death, but rather for that one peculiar sin of rejecting his offer to forgive. This will not stand in my book, but it's rare to agree with everything t ...more
Bob Gooch
Dr. Craig is a philosopher with Arminian theological leanings. I thought the book was good for the most part, but I admit had some problem with his Arminian explanations. I also had problems with the way he presented a few of his arguments, maybe because he was trying to summarize a little too much. It seems to me that his book Reasonable Faith (at least the part I've read) is better written. Craig’s philosophical credentials are without question, so my problems with this book may be more from m ...more
Josh Kraus
Craig outlines his arguments clearly, and for the most part concisely so that anyone who is new or old to apologetics can easily access the information in this book. My one minor gripe with this book is possibly Craig's argument about the issue of suffering. The topic of suffering is easily the most pressing issue for the existence of God, and I felt that Craig neither spent as much time on this subject as he should have, and his argument regarding it did not cover the topic enough to provide a ...more
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William Lane Craig is Research Professor of Philosophy at Talbot School of Theology in La Mirada, California. He and his wife Jan have two grown children.

At the age of sixteen as a junior in high school, he first heard the message of the Christian gospel and yielded his life to Christ. Dr. Craig pursued his undergraduate studies at Wheaton College (B.A. 1971) and graduate studies at Trinity Evange
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“The point is that if there is no God, then objective right and wrong do not exist. As Dostoyevsky said, “All things are permitted.” 3 likes
“The point is this: If God does not exist, then life is objectively meaningless; but man cannot live consistently and happily knowing that life is meaningless; so in order to be happy he pretends life has meaning. But this is, of course, entirely inconsistent—for without God, man and the universe are without any real significance.” 2 likes
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