Imagine for a moment that someone was able to locate, juggle schedules, arrange transportation, and bring together into one room all the following:
* a high school prodigy whose minister sometimes invited him to preach in the largest congregation of their association;
* a biblical languages major and avid Bible student;
* a national debate champion in university competition;
* a Sunday-school teacher with a class approaching 1,000, whose videotaped lessons are
viewed around the world;
* a Christian apologist with encyclopedic interests and a memory to match;
* a theological researcher with access to any material desired;
* a gifted communicator and frequent guest on national television news networks; and
* a legendary trial lawyer ranked by the profession and his peers as one of America’s best.
Now stretch your imagination to suppose that all these experiences, gifts, qualities and traits describe not eight different individuals but one particular man.
Imagine with me that this attorney represents Christianity On Trial, with you in the jury box, where you hear every word of the trial–from opening speech to closing argument. Along the way you hear testimony from the experts, including the scientist, theologian, linguist, humanist, philosopher, and psychologist, plus eyewitness testimony from people who experienced what we read about in the Bible.
The one particular man described as eight different people does not have to be imagined. He is W. Mark Lanier, a very real person, who himself imagined just such a trial as pictured above, and wrote the book that puts you in the jury box.
That book is Christianity on Trial: A Lawyer Examines the Christian Faith (InterVarsity Press, paper, 240 pages, expected release June 2014). Retail $16.00; pre-order price $12.80.
With the release of this book, I predict that Mark Lanier will soon take his place alongside Francis Schaeffer, Josh McDowell, and Lee Strobel whenever people think of popular apologists and defenders of the Christian faith.
Read more details about the book here.
Read endorsements from both sides of the Atlantic here.
FULL DISCLOSURE: I have been close friends with Mark Lanier since 1984, practiced law with him since 1997, substituted for him more than once in his Sunday School class, and he and his wife Becky sponsor my ministry.