As I was browsing the Internet today I came across the following from a “John Calvin”:
“All right. So all the Fristian needs to do is to say that ‘Fristianity’ is whatever subset of Christian claims the TAGster thinks we need for preconditions of intelligibility, *except that* the Trinity is a Quadrinity.”
How does someone disprove a worldview that has the same propositions as Christianity except for the additional proposition that there is a fourth person in God?
In my view, thinking of the “preconditions of intelligibility” as a “subset of Christian claims” may be a rather substantial error, but whether or not this is the case is irrelevant to answering this objection as it has been proposed. Whatever subset of Christian claims is needed for the preconditions of intelligibility, one can be sure that the TAG adherent claims the doctrine of the Word of God is one such member of the alleged subset. The Christian worldview is revelatory. The Word of God is the final authority.
The claim of the presuppositionalists is that the rejection of this extremely basic tenet of Christianity sets an individual firmly in the position of would-be autonomy which results in a failure to render human experience intelligible. The Fristian may be happy to defend such an allegedly autonomous position except that the possibility of doing so has been excluded by the definition of Fristianity provided here.
Recall that Fristianity is “whatever subset of Christian claims the TAGster thinks we need for preconditions of intelligibility”. Fristianity is a worldview that has the same propositions as Christianity with one exception. Fristianity includes the additional proposition that there is a fourth person in God so that “the Trinity is a Quadrinity”.
The individual proposing the Fristianity Objection in this instance, “John Calvin”, issues his challenge as follows:
“I want what you do to everyone else. You show how the Muslims can’t account for the preconditions for intelligibility, you show how the Mormons can’t do this. You show that the atheists can’t do this. You, allegedly, show how they refute themselves. How their worldview *cannot* account for the preconditions of intelligibility. Now, a new batter has stepped up to the plate. Will you finally stike [sic] him out, or will I keep getting intentionally walked?”
Since I have never been much of a baseball player I will let Paul Manata do the pitching for this one. In one of his many excellent book reviews (http://triablogue.blogspot.com/2008/04/paradox-in-christian-theology.html) Manata brings up what he considers “the best apologetic arguments against Islam and Judaism…based on internal contradictions”.
“Islam claims that the Gospels are inspired by Allah. The Gospels teach that Jesus is God. The Koran says he is not. Therefore, the contradiction is that Jesus is and is not God. Is the Muslim really going to accept both these claims about Jesus:
(J1) Jesus is very God of very God.
(J2) Jesus is not very God of very God.
(J1A) Jesus was crucified and died for the sins of man.
(J2A) Jesus was not crucified and did not die for the sins of man.
Or, inconsistencies between their own apologetic practices and what their own holy book teaches:
(A1) The Bible is not reliable as a witness to Jesus.
(A2) The Bible is reliable as a witness to Jesus.
I do not see how.”
Fristianity claims that the Bible is inspired by God. The Bible teaches that God is only three in person. The Fristian says God is not only three in person. Therefore, the contradiction is that God is only three in person and is not only three in person. Is the Fristian really going to accept both these claims about God:
(F1) God is only three in person.
(F2) God is not only three in person.
The reason Fristianity as posited here fails is because it gets too close to Christianity when it is offered as an attempt to copy Christianity with one relevant difference. The worldview is open to refutation from the outset because of its inconsistency with the Christian doctrine it allegedly accepts. It is internally contradictory.
In cases where a ‘Christianity +1’ worldview is offered one may appeal to Christianity to show that the +1 creates inconsistencies with the Christianity already accepted. To show that +1 is inconsistent with Christianity constitutes an internal critique of that particular worldview.