The Recent Rise of Covenantal Apologetics (4 of 10)

Happy Birthday Choosing Hats!

If I am going to post anything resembling an attempt to “toot my own horn” I might as well get it done early so that people will forget about it by the time I write on more significant contributing factors to the recent rise of covenantal apologetics.

Choosing Hats was founded by Brian Knapp and Chris Bolt in July of 2008 in an effort to promote Van Tilian presuppositional apologetics at an introductory level and free of charge on the Internet. Choosing Hats is four years old today, and the next issue of the In Antithesis journal should be out soon.

Over the last four years, I have seen us grow from a small blog with a handful of people interested in covenantal apologetics to a website with seven contributors, an apologetics journal, a chat channel, and the like. We are still not a very well-known site, but our hits have gone up significantly since we started. We are encouraged by the widespread interest in covenantal apologetics and the amount of study that visitors to our site and chat channel have put into learning the method.

Below you will find some “highlights” from the last four years. These are by no means what everyone would consider highlights, and some will require some more digging to finish reading, but we hope that the list below will at the very least whet your appetite to continue reading through our archives and following our site in the future.

2008

The first post ever made at Choosing Hats on July 30, 2008 was from Brian Knapp and was based upon a sermon that he preached while an elder at his church. He devoted three posts to his topic.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/07/a-study-in-the-nature-of-gods-word-authority-part-1/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/08/a-study-in-the-nature-of-gods-word-authority-part-2/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/08/a-study-in-the-nature-of-gods-word-authority-part-3/

Intermingled with Brian’s posts were two from Chris Bolt on human dignity.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/08/the-asparagus-and-the-ape-part-1/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/08/the-asparagus-and-the-ape-part-2/

Other highlights from the first year include a series on the Problem of Evil, a few posts on Zoroastrianism, and a study of Always Ready available in audio. Paul Stadig and Ragnar  Mogård Bergem were involved with these studies as well as “brigand.”

One notable post summarizes the presuppositional approach to apologetics and argument. http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/10/faith-and-final-authority/

Choosing Hats also welcomed RazorsKiss to its list of contributors during its first year.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/11/choosing-hats-welcomes-razors-kiss/

Finally at the end of the year Chris engaged atheist John Loftus from Debunking Christianity and Brian followed.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/12/john-loftus-on-control-beliefs/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2008/12/more-on-john-loftus-and-control-beliefs/

2009

One notable post from 2009 notes that “reason” is not the answer to the world’s problems. http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/02/reason-is-not-the-answer/

A post that included a diagram used for teaching Van Tilian apologetics invited the comments of Randian Objectivist “Bahnsen Burner” Dawson Bethrick and a lengthy battle ensued between the two respective sites lasting for some time.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/03/your-thoughts-welcome/

Brian wrote helpful, practical posts on dealing with unbelieving thought.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/06/the-discussion-part-i-the-testimonial/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/06/the-discussion-part-ii-the-refutation/

The Portable Presuppositionalist was also released at this time, featuring articles by all three Choosing Hats contributors.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/08/the-portable-presuppositionalist/

In September RazorsKiss debated atheist Mitch LeBlanc of Urban Philosophy. This resulted in an extended “relationship” with Mitch and others of Urban Philosophy lasting for some time. http://razorskiss.net/2009/08/08/debate-transcript/

One post worth noting was on eight steps to popularizing presuppositional apologetics. http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/09/eight-steps-to-popularizing-presuppositional-apologetics/

As a part of the continuous back-and-forth with Dawson Bethrick, Brian attempted to nail down and correct some of Bethrick’s difficulties with the Transcendental Argument for God.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/09/dawsons-misunderstanding-of-tas/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/09/helping-dawson-recognize-a-ta/

Chris wrote as a guest blogger elsewhere and copied it onto Choosing Hats as well. This was just one of a handful of basic, introductory level posts that Chris wrote that year.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/10/why-the-bible-is-necessary-for-apologetics-a-brief-reflection-on-1-peter-3-15/

In November Dr. James White of Alpha and Omega Ministries recommended that Choosing Hats be added to readers and thereby significantly increased the flow of traffic to and through the site. http://www.aomin.org/aoblog/index.php?itemid=3608

The movie Collision featuring debate and discussion between atheist Christopher Hitchens and Christian Doug Wilson came out at this time and generated a number of posts.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/11/collision-a-brief-review/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/11/collision-gets-a-bad-review/

In December RazorsKiss posted on “possibility” and created what has probably been the most popular post on Choosing Hats in terms of hits and comments.  http://www.choosinghats.org/2009/12/attributal-argument-for-god%E2%80%99s-ordination-of-possibility/

2010

In 2010 Chris took on Nocterro from Urban Philosophy in a text debate.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/02/discussion-with-nocterro-concerning-three-topics-opening-statement/

Chris also began to address Fristianity Style Counters (FSC) or the “Fristianity Objection” to TAG.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/02/a-fristian-strikes-out/

The entirety of the old Always Ready study, which was never completed, was made available all in one place.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/03/always-ready-study-parts-1-5/

Two new podcasts began called Praxis Presup and Hat Tricks. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/04/new-podcast-praxis-presup/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/04/hat-tricks-episode-1/

Chris had a lengthy exchange with the Reformed Apologist Ronald DiGiacomo here and here and here and here and here and here on Van Til and Bahnsen’s view of TAG as deductive or not.

He also addressed some concerns from Nick Norelli, including the use of presuppositional apologetics in debate and the application of covenantal apologetics to other religions.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/06/presuppositional-apologetics-in-debate/

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/06/covenantal-apologetics-and-other-religions/

RazorsKiss ignited some controversy when he dealt with a charge from the Dispensationalist camp that presuppositionalism is “new.” http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/07/is-presuppositionalism-new/

A debate that was being set up between Chris Bolt and Mitch LeBlanc fell through. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/06/regretfully/

Chris debated agnostic Ben Wallis. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/08/debate-does-god-exist/

In October, Chris was interviewed by Jared Oliphint and Jonathan Brack of The Reformed Media Review at WTS about the site. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/10/interview-with-the-reformed-media-review/

Chris wrote what has become a more popular post on TAG and Islam. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/10/tag-and-islam/

RazorsKiss debated a Muslim in text while attempting to use an explicitly transcendental method in doing so.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/10/is-the-quran-the-word-of-god-debate-transcript/

Some introductory level apologetics books were recommended. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/11/introductory-level-apologetic-books/

A third podcast called Point of Contact was released. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/11/point-of-contact-are-the-laws-of-logic-created/

A notable post concerns the answer to an objection about covenantal apologetics having no so-called “positive” argument or presentation. http://www.choosinghats.org/2010/12/positive-covenantal-apologetics/

2011

January 2011 was the site’s busiest month in terms of number of posts. This business was due in large part to Chris Bolt’s 45 part introductory series on covenantal apologetics.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/05/introduction-to-covenantal-apologetics/

Some series can be found on their own page. http://www.choosinghats.org/post-series/

RazorsKiss had a debate with Roman Catholic Dan Marcum. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/02/sola-scriptura-debate/

James Anderson wrote a positive presentation of TAG for Philosophia Christi in response to David Reiter. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/03/james-andersons-response-to-david-reiter-on-tag/

The site welcomed three new contributors in 2011 which were Resequitur, defectivebit, and D.S. Smith.

http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/04/choosing-hats-welcomes-three-new-contributors/

Choosing Hats decided to start a journal devoted to the advancement of covenantal/presuppositional apologetics called In Antithesis. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/04/in-antithesis-an-announcement-and-a-call-for-papers/

Finally, a number of debates that were being planned fell through. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/07/ben-wallis-and-paul-baird-withdraw-debate-challenges/

In August of 2011, Chris Bolt debated atheist Michael Long on whether or not there is good reason to believe that the Christian God exists. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/08/is-there-good-reason-to-believe-that-the-christian-god-exists/

The following month Brian Knapp appeared on the Goodness Over God podcast with Ben Wallis and Michael Long. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/09/brian-knapp-on-goodness-over-god-podcast/

Ben W. (not to be confused with Ben Wallis the agnostic) joined us as a contributor in September. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/09/science-is-what-a-response/

RazorsKiss responded to a feminist on presuppositional apologetics. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/09/a-feminist-examines-presup/

The first issue of the In Antithesis journal came out. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/09/in-antithesis-vol-1-no-1-is-now-here/

Internet Atheists began taking note of the site. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/10/fundamentalist-atheism-and-the-refusal-to-answer/

RazorsKiss asked, “So, You Think You’re A Presuppositionalist?” http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/10/so-you-think-youre-a-presuppositionalist/

He also began a series on Mormonism. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/10/seven-reasons-why-mormons-are-christian/

Chris began a series on Wicca. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/10/the-reformed-religion-of-revelation-and-the-wiccan-religion-of-choice/

Brian Knapp had an informal debate with atheist Matt Oxley in November. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/11/praxis-presup-episode-18-brian-knapp-and-matt-oxley/

RazorsKiss created a new FAQ section. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/11/new-faq-section/

James N. Anderson and Greg Welty authored a paper on God and logic. http://www.choosinghats.org/2011/12/the-lord-of-non-contradiction-an-argument-for-god-from-logic-by-james-anderson-and-greg-welty/

2012

Atheism took a hit from the SOPA protests. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/01/atheism-takes-hit-from-sopa-protests/

Chris wrote on the relationship between theology and philosophy. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/01/theology-versus-philosophy/

The second issue of In Antithesis came out. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/02/in-antithesis-vol-2-no-1/

Chris posted some thoughts about the “impossibility of the contrary.” http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/02/some-thoughts-about-the-impossibility-of-the-contrary/

Ben W. answered the concern that Christian morality is dangerous. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/02/weve-got-mail-is-christian-morality-dangerous/

Chris answered a concern about presuppositional apologetics and other religious worldviews. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/02/weve-got-mail-what-about-various-other-worldviews/

Razorskiss responded to an atheist about the glory of God. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/02/weve-got-mail-the-glory-of-god-and-grounding-objections/

Defectivebit published a presuppositional apologetics reading list. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/03/a-reading-plan-to-learn-covenantalpresuppositional-apologetics/

RazorsKiss took on an article by Paul Copan on presuppositional apologetics. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/03/questioning-copan/

He collected other responses to the same article. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/03/copans-folly/

RazorsKiss announced his debate on annihilationism with Chris Date and began writing posts on the topic over a period of several months. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/debate-annihilationism-with-chris-date/

Chris posted some observations about conversion stories. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/conversion-stories/

He also argued that we should be Reformed Catholic. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/why-we-should-be-reformed-catholic/

And asked what it is that we presuppose. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/what-exactly-is-it-that-we-presuppose/

Is there anything true about atheism? http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/five-ways-atheism-is-true/

Chris wrote on the objection that Christianity is a man-made religion. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/christianity-is-a-man-made-religion/

And RazorsKiss posted a sermon on the knowledge of God. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/04/sermon-the-knowledge-of-god/

See also The Unbeliever’s Problem. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/05/the-unbelievers-problem/

The New Atheism was identified as logical positivism for the masses. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/06/the-new-atheism-logical-positivism-for-the-masses/

RazorsKiss debated Chris Date on annihilationism. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/06/debate-annihilationism-chris-date-vs-joshua-whipps-2/

Ben W. was responsible for the creation of “B.A.C.O.N.,” the new T.U.L.I.P. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/06/bacon-its-new-tulip/

He also wrote on the use of evidences. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/06/are-evidences-even-useful/

Chris was interviewed by Paul Baird on the Skepticule podcast. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/07/chris-bolt-skepticule-record-podcast/

By this time McFormtist, a new contributor, was posting as well. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/07/we-both-are-atheists/

A key to understanding apologetics is knowing how to answer the Evidentialist Objection. http://www.choosinghats.org/2012/07/answering-evidentialist-objection/

We hope to continue to bring you lots of free, easily accessible, and helpful material in an effort to explain and demonstrate Van Tilian covenantal/presuppositional apologetics in defense of the Christian faith to the glory of God.

Please keep us in prayer, and thank you for all of the support you have given us these last four years.


2 Comments

SLIMJIM

Thanks for your work here at Choosing Hats brother Chris, and for taking Presuppositionalism a little further along! We at Veritas Domain are grateful for all that you guys do!
I got to admit, that since Seminary I have been focusing more on exegetical skills over that of Philosophy, I’m rather rusty in many things (not to mention having attention directed elsewhere from possible further growth in certain areas of philosohy). I plan to catch up from you guys and also spend more time in reading things of that direction.

defectivebit

The Atheism takes a hit from SOPA post still makes me laugh.


Leave a Comment