Tag: Cornelius Van Til
Pat Mefford’s initial post on multi-valued logic was directed at the impossibility of the contrary claim found in covenantal/presuppositional apologetics. I responded here. Pat responded here and here.
His main concern now is as follows:
In what way are we thinking God’s thoughts after him when think of this scriptural passage that was at the top of my original post?
“One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” This testimony is true.” (Titus 1: 12-13a)
Now I can respect that Paul was rhetorical point in citing Epimenides, he
I will be responding to this post – http://servileconformist.typepad.com/servile-conformist/2012/12/can-presuppositional-apologists-account-for-logic-.html#
Atheist Pat Mefford offers a rather ingenious means of getting around the transcendental method as used in covenantal apologetics. Now, I know Pat, so let me begin with a bit of friendly ad hominem. The argument of Pat’s post strikes me as illustrating the dangers of familiarity with a little bit of philosophy and a lot more sin. Pat proposes non-classical views of logic (in some cases held by an extreme minority of philosophers) in an attempt to overturn a presuppositional apologetic argument. Frankly, if that is the best …
One of our readers brought this post – http://philosophiles.net/2012/09/28/the-problem-with-presuppositionalism – to my attention. For some reason I was unable to comment on the post, so I have reproduced a brief response here.
The author is probably correct to think that premise four is the one that presuppositionalists are going to object to, but in attempting to defend that premise he makes at least three errors.
First, he focuses on, “The only effective way to falsify premise four,” which assumes that the burden of proof is on the presuppositionalist to falsify the premise. But that’s not the way arguments work. Since …
Transcendental arguments are traditionally used in response to skepticism. See Aristotle, Descartes, Kant, Strawson, Grayling, and Stern.
Transcendental argument in Van Til and Bahnsen is likewise a response to skepticism. They were not arguing for skepticism, they were arguing against it. It just so happens that the only answer to skepticism is the Christian worldview.
Presuppositional apologists often appear to argue for skepticism because their opponents attempt to respond to it through rationalist, empiricist, and pragmatic schools of thought. But it is unreasonable to assume, given the evidence, that any of these three general responses to skepticism really works.
Suppose someone posits that his or her worldview is consistently inconsistent. He or she admits that there are many inconsistencies within the worldview. In this case, inconsistency is not something to be shunned. Inconsistency is to be affirmed. Embraced. Granted approval. Are there such worldviews? Yes. There are worldviews that come close to rejecting the need for consistency. Buddhism and postmodernism are two examples. How might the covenantal apologist respond?
First, an inconsistency-affirming worldview is also consistency-affirming. There is nothing more inconsistent with inconsistency than consistency. To be consistent, an inconsistency-affirming worldview must also be a consistency-affirming worldview. …
As I have gotten involved in dealing with Roman Catholicism and sola scriptura, I have found two things very interesting. First of all, there is a grossly simplistic view of meaning in language amongst many Roman Catholic apologists. Many of them will be willing to destroy human language in order to argue against sola scriptura, borrowing from men like Jacques Derrida and Stanley Fish to argue that we cannot know which interpretation of scripture is correct. It is amazing to be able to cite deconstructionists making parallel arguments to Roman Catholic apologists.
Second, what I am realizing more and more …