Behold, “Presuppositional” is passing way, apologetics is becoming “Covenantal”

Dr. Oliphint explains why he finds the label “Presuppositional” to be unhelpful, and why he is instead labeling Van Til’s methodology “Covenantal apologetics”.

Covenantal Apologetics from Westminster Theological Seminary on Vimeo.

The book is due for next month! For anyone interested in learning Van Til’s apologetic, one should certainly check the work that Oliphint has undertaken to biblically demonstrate  Van Til’s particular Reformed apologetic application.


6 Comments

Justin

I am unfamiliar with Oliphint. How, if at all, does he differ from Bahnsen’s approach?

Thanks to you, I put the book on preorder. 🙂

Resequitur

That’s a great question Justin! Thanks for your question!

I think a former student of Dr. Oliphint’s has provided the best explanation provided here

You’ll notice that Oliphint following Van Til will take a biblical theological theme to his approach, as most basic to the methodology. That way, when we’ve laid the exegetical ground, we can then begin to start “exegeting” it into philosophical and apologetical contexts.

Justin

Thanks for the response and the video.

From the video, I understand that the speaker’s opinion is that Bahnsen was good, but weak on the Trinity (I wish he would have defined what he meant by that a bit more- I’ve never considered Bahnsen “weak” on the Trinity). He then went on to state that Frame is good, but weak on TAG. He concludes by saying that Oliphint and Tipton are the best of both worlds.

I suppose I’ll have to start reading what Oliphint and Tipton have to say to see for myself… 😀

Justin

Resequitur

I think it’s really just points of emphasis. I think if Bahnsen were asked about it today, if he was alive, he would say he agrees with the strong Trinitarian emphasis of Van Til.

As far as wishing he would have defined it more, I think it’s something you will see when you start reading Van Til. You will notice something a little different by the way he argues and the themes he takes on.

Greg (Tiribulus)

I agree. Oliphint is THE MAN carrying Van Til’s torch. Love the guy. This should be tremendous.

Of course there are others, some on this site, but Oliphint gets the most visibility of those faithful to Van Til’s covenantal (biblical) world view. Of which his apologetic method was only a blessed symptom.

Greg (Tiribulus)

Forgive my interjection, but he is very right about Frame. By the time Frame is done qualifying what he sees as Van Til’s weaknesses he is back in the arms of Aristotle and Aquinas. I heard a bunch of his classroom lectures from RTS. I must confess to being very disappointed. Frame is not an epistemological Van Tillian IF I am to take him seriously from those lectures.


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