Van Tilian Turf Wars (Part 1)

At least three types of Van Tilian presuppositionalists have emerged from the recent surge in popularity of presuppositionalism.

Fundamentalist

The first group are the fundamentalists. Fundamentalists are not necessarily to be identified with fundamentalism in general, but rather with fundamentalist tendencies when it comes to discerning apologetic methodology. This brand of presuppositionalism takes a more biblicist approach to apologetic questions and disputes. Though arguments may be offered in the context of apologetic discussion, these arguments are typically less philosophically precise and more explicitly biblical or dogmatic. Examples of those in the fundamentalist strain of presuppositionalism include Answers in Genesis, Sye …

Read more

Introduction to Apologetics Seminary Course

Lord willing, I will be teaching AP8521 Introduction to Apologetics at the Huntsville, Alabama extension center for Birmingham Theological Seminary on Monday nights from 7:30-9:30pm starting in September. Please find more details at http://birminghamseminary.org/ and pass this information along to anyone you know who is interested and lives in the area!…

Read more

If one is uncertain; one is certainly an evidentialist?

Someone pointed me to the following quote on facebook yesterday:

The Baptist is inherently an evidentialist. They must look to subjective always changing evidence to prove covenant membership.

A Presbyterian assumes an objective, universal standard for membership that can be known with certainty.

A Baptist cannot claim certainty.

Granted, this is a non-sequitur in its own right as it stands. It seems to be a post meant to start what those of us who have been around Internet discussions a while call a “flame war” about the subject of baptism in some purported presuppositionalist sub-group. I choose to ignore that …

Read more

[F]utilitarianism

There is a school of thought to which many ethicists subscribe, whose students never seem willing to move on from the lambda-omega-lambdas, and whose parties are always unusually loud and long even after the music has been stopped for years and all the drink has dried up. This troupe of tautological idealogues loves to insist upon its own opinions and swears so should you. In doing so they both establish and undercut their point. These are the Utilitarians.

Utilitarianism is a philosophy of ethics that is summarily defined to say, “the morally right action is the action that produces …

Read more

Controversy, Purity, or Consistency?

As the release of K. Scott Oliphint’s “Covenant Apologetics” draws nigh, I’m finding that it’s harder and harder to get away, in Presuppositionalist circles, from the objections to the very use of these terms, and a modest storm of controversy that continues to build. There is, I think, a very good reason for that. It’s quite obvious, I’ve gathered, that the usage of”Covenant Apologetics” is significant in that it marks a watershed between a variety of streams of thought, and that of covenantal apologists. First, it marks a watershed, in the most general sense, from the postmodern conception of presuppositions …

Read more

Dr Scott Oliphint Fields Questions on Unbelievable?

That’s right, it was an inquisition! Ok, not quite that bad. Dr. Oliphint was on Unbelievable? to talk about Presuppositional/Covenantal Apologetics. He ended up having to spend the entire time defending it from Kurt Jaros who clearly doesn’t understand the Theological underpinnings of the method, or their implications. However, because of this, there are some very good explanations that Dr. Oliphint gives that I think are very helpful. One that stands out in my mind is confusion between the fact that non believers are irrational yet we can also reason with them. Listen carefully for these great answers Dr. Oliphint …

Read more

For the Love of God and Philosophy

One of the biggest roadblocks to accepting the Bible as the Word of God is putting biblical theology in terms of philosophy (and by this I mean modern philosophy, or the formulation of thought in the tradition of the popular philosophers), rather than putting philosophy in terms of biblical theology. The philosophical categories, which have largely been fabricated in ignorance of the Bible, are often insufficient to expound the doctrines of the Bible. At the same time, many of the modern philosophical categories are created with intent to circumvent the implications of biblical theology. This same deference to man’s philosophy …

Read more