“The argument is so marvellously simple that it’s easy to memorize and share with another person. It’s a logically airtight argument. If the two premises are true, then the conclusion necessarily follows.”
William Lane Craig, On Guard
William Craig is one of the most well-known Christian apologists to date. A big part of this is because of all the debates he does. They’re interesting to watch, but you don’t have to watch many of them. No matter who sits on the other side of the podium, and what arguments they give, the main weapon Craig wields is the Kalam Cosmological Argument.
The Kalam Cosmological argument technically originated with a man named Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali, a twelfth-century Muslim philosopher. Ghazali’s argument – which Craig modernized – uses a three-step approach to rationalizing the existence of God.
Craig’s laid out this argument in another book of his, Reasonable Faith. It’s a pretty technical book I found hard to get through. But he also wrote it in the reader’s digest version, On Guard, which I would argue is one of his best books to date. It’s easy to understand but covers complicated topics in science and history. It was the first time I was able to read about oscillating universes without feeling like a complete idiot.
One of the other things I like most about the book is Craig and his team of editors and illustrators put in a lot of work to make the book more than just a bunch of words. There’s helpful diagrams, definitions of complicated words and pull quotes to help you navigate the book better. Better yet, at the end of each chapter, Craig gives a summary of the chapter’s arguments in a flow chart, which helps you memorize the arguments yourself.
How to read it
The chapters are pretty topical, so there’s no need to read them in order if you’re looking for a specific argument. But the book does have three parts to it, so if you really want to get a full understanding of say, historical evidence for Jesus’ resurrection, you’ll want to at least read one part at a time.
William Craig has a lot of helpful resources on his website, Reasonable Faith. You can find articles, videos, podcasts and online forums related to apologetics and theology.
Also, Craig has released some interesting videos summarizing his arguments of his YouTube Channel. They’re really interesting and worth a watch!