My answer to the first question is that I’m not smart or clever enough to think I can use apologetics as the main course. Philosophy and reasoning in apologetics are not my strengths, and I’m really glad or I would be tempted to use them wrongly. (That doesn’t mean that those who are gifted in those areas use them selfishly.)
As Ravi indicated, I think one’s pride steps in when attempting to use apologetics as the main course because what the person is really doing is attempting to show how clever he/she is; not how amazing and gracious God is. Knowledge can be used to honor God or dishonor Him. I pray, and by God’s grace, I will never be guilty of the latter.
God has been using a newly formed friendship with someone who has endured insufferable suffering in her life, struggles with pain every day, and yet presses on to regain her physical and mental abilities…the whole time totally trusting God and wanting His glory first. The Holy Spirit has humbled me to realize that such love of our Lord is what God wants above all else. We can be in service for Him, attend church regularly, even evangelize on Connect. But without the love for Him that puts our needs and our suffering above Him, our works pale. God wants us to totally depend on Him because He made us and knows how he wants us to serve Him.
I heard an interesting sermon on the radio this morning. He said God is not a watchmaker who completes his design and then leaves it to another to use. Instead, God completes his design for us but then stays with us to sustain us, ultimately to make us complete in Him. That love relationship is what He longs for. That is what the Holy Spirit is encouraging me to have.