Within the Book of Acts is an anthology of apostolic preaching. Among those sermons is Paul’s address to the pagans and philosophers of Athens, what has been called his Areopagitica.  Here Paul proclaimed the gospel, not to biblically informed, monotheistic Jews, but to pagans and philosophers of thoroughly unbiblical presuppositions. Here if anywhere we would expect to find insights on how to do apologetics today among secularists with their various isms or among modern pagans. Should apologetics be presuppositional, classical, evidential, cumulative case? Where is the point of contact between belief and unbelief? How should the argument be structured?
Before we attempt a full textbook on apologetics from this single passage, a few preliminary observations are in order. First, the passage obviously summarizes Paul’s message; it does not elaborate on his outline. Second, this preaching like all preaching suits a particular occasion, and some of Paul’s statements may be rhetoric based on details that the passage does not disclose (e.g., audience reactions during the sermon). Third, the message is not so much an argument or back-and-forth debate as a proclamation, Paul answering their question, “What’s this Jesus and resurrection deal all about?” For these reasons and for the basic hermeneutical caution not to make any narrative absolutely normative for today, we should be careful not to decide in favor of any one apologetic methodology based on this one passage alone.