Fool's Talk
Os Guinness

Book cover image

Narrated By: Ralph Lister

Duration: 10 hours and 15 minutes

What to expect

In the post-Christian context, public life has become markedly more secular and private life infinitely more diverse. Yet many Christians still rely on cookie-cutter approaches to evangelism and apologetics. Most of these methods assume that people are open, interested, and needy for spiritual insight when increasingly most people are not. The urgent need, then, is the capacity to persuade―to make a convincing case for the gospel to people who are not interested in it.

In his magnum opus, Os Guinness offers a comprehensive presentation of the art and power of creative persuasion. Christians have often relied on proclaiming and preaching, protesting and picketing but are strikingly weak in persuasion―the ability to talk to people who are closed to what is being said. Actual persuasion requires more than a one-size-fits-all approach. Guinness notes, “Jesus never spoke to two people the same way, and neither should we.”

Following the tradition of Erasmus, Pascal, G. K. Chesterton, C. S. Lewis, Malcolm Muggeridge, and Peter Berger, Guinness demonstrates how apologetic persuasion requires both the rational and the imaginative. Persuasion is subversive, turning the tables on listeners’ assumptions to surprise them with signals of transcendence and the credibility of the gospel.

This book is the fruit of forty years of thinking, honed in countless talks and discussions at many of the leading universities and intellectual centers of the world. Discover afresh the persuasive power of Christian witness from one of the leading apologists and thinkers of the era.

Genre

Christianity, Theology, Christian life and practice, Christianity, Religious mission and Religious Conversion

Listen to a sample

“Guinness richly mines many a classic vein of wisdom, and wit, to help Christians in our time discern what it means to be winsome, and compelling, in commending faith…Seeking answers, readers can do no better than turn the pages of this book. For over forty years, Dr. Guinness has crafted learned, witty, and compelling books. This book may be his finest―one rich in simile, parable, and insight.”

Huffington Post

“Guinness offers helpful discourse on the anatomy of disbelief, how to respond to it, and how to avoid compromise while charting a journey toward faith. He uses examples from history and scripture to steer the reader toward deeper understanding of how to effectively share the good news of Christianity in a new age, when character, ethics, and faith can persuade more effectively than reasoned argument.”

Publishers Weekly

“A remarkable book. Written with the benefit of decades of experience and reflection―this is one book on apologetics you will not want to miss. I wholeheartedly recommend it.”

Michael Ramsden, joint director, Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics, international director, RZIM for Europe, the Middle East and Africa

“Hardened skeptics and militant unbelievers are often a puzzle to Christian apologists. Arguments alone sometimes fail to stick to the souls of these unbelievers. Because of this, we need the rhetorical wisdom of Os Guinness, evangelicalism’s greatest living social critic. Fool’s Talk will make its readers wiser and more creative in commending the matchless gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Douglas Groothuis, professor of philosophy, Denver Seminary

Fool’s Talk by Os Guinness is necessary and vitally important. Insightfully, he not only guides in the use of wit and weightiness but also restores winsomeness to the art of communicating Christ…The benefits of the past are freshly and insightfully applied to the present. All people need to know they are deeply loved and forgiven by God. Fool’s Talk will better equip us to tell them. I heartily endorse this book.”