Friday, August 19, 2011

Apologetics Tracts: A Review

Do you have any experience with gospel tracts? What has been your impression of them? What comes to mind? Maybe images of cartoons come to mind with renderings of hellfire, judgment day, and angels. Whatever your impression in the past may be (positive or negative), it may be worth your time to check out these apologetics-oriented tracts.

Created by True-Way Tracts, these Apologetics Briefs are a full-colour, glossy, folded brochure that addresses a particular apologetics topic. Here are some of the titles:
  • How Can We Know That God Exists?
  • Can a Loving God Allow Pain and Suffering?
  • Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?
  • Who Do You Say Jesus Christ Is?
  • How Can God Be Three-In-One?
  • Is Truth Relative or Objective?
  • Do All Roads Lead to God?
  • Why is Bible Prophecy So Amazing?
So what about the content? Each particular tract (or brief) contains quite a bit of information, presented in a logical, point-by-point case. The author of the tracts has an M.A. in apologetics, and the tracts themselves have been endorsed by such names as Norman Geisler, Craig Hazen, John Warwick Montgomery, Kay Arthur, and Chuck Smith. If you handed someone one of these, perhaps after a good conversation on a tough topic, you would feel confident that you're not handing them some cheesy cartoonized message. It's actually good content.

Finding really good tracts is sometimes a challenge. Finding ones that engage on apologetics topics can be even tougher. But these tracts fill the niche in a pretty good way. It should be noted that these are higher quality tracts, both in print/paper and content. They're not ones intended to be handed out indiscriminately on street corners. So here are the pros and the cons of these Apologetics Briefs:

Pros: an intellectually engaging tract selection, covers the most essential apologetics topics, visually appealing (not cartoony), quality paper and content.

Cons: limited space means limited explanation; short answers might sound trite to some; text-heavy graphic design could be more readable. Pricey. (But there are non-glossy 3-fold cheaper versions with the same content worth checking out too.)

Potential uses: apologetics resource tables in churches; giving to friends with questions; good "primer" material for the beginner to get their toe in the water; these could be left in waiting rooms or other locations where they will be read; school/university campus ministries; youth groups; keep a selection in your car, etc.

Verdict: Finally a selection of apologetics tracts! They are a bit pricey for the nice ones, but worth sampling out if you have been looking for this sort of resource.

Find Apologetics Briefs at TrueWayTracts.

This review is for the apologetics briefs only, and other tracts from TrueWayTracts were not sampled.

4 comments :

asoldierforjesus said...

I am extremely picky about tracts. Not only does the content have to meet my standards, but they must be in pretty much perfect condition for me to hand out. Which also leads to a non-surprise, I am willing to pay for good ones.

For "hit-and-run" or "stash-and-drop", I prefer million dollar bills from Living Waters. For conversations, the pricey ones come into play because there is a good chance questions were discussed and apologetics were brought into use. "Here, let me leave this with you..."

jeremy said...

I find tracts rather cheesy. My friends who are non-Christian and have been given tracts found them off-putting, and the few who have converted to Christianity had off-putting experiences prior to much-later conversions by people passing them tracts. But if one were to use them, the production value is indeed helpful in conveying the message.

truth4taiwan said...

The only thing I'd like to add is: I think it's different for different cultures. Buddhism is spread and sustained partially by the use of tracts in the Far East.

The method of distribution in the West usually does leave a bad taste. In the East, there are piles of books, CDs, DVDs, and tracts left laying around in vegetarian restaurants and elsewhere. People can take what they want.

But if you give a Bible to someone, they're less likely to read it. Give them a tract and they might just open it up!

Hoops said...

Let us not forget the power of the Holy Spirit to use these long after we have forgotten where we placed them or with who eventually opens and reads them.

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