Here’s a history of the exchange with atheist Pat Mefford regarding, most notably, the Liar Paradox:
Valuable points were made in the comments by David Byron and B.C. Askins. I will limit my response to addressing Pat’s most recent post http://servileconformist.typepad.com/servile-conformist/2012/12/more-thoughts-on-chris-bolt.html.
My previous reply to Pat on Titus 1.12-13a was not merely “a brief comment” but a refutation of the point Pat has most recently attempted to proffer regarding our exchange. Pat reiterates his earlier claims in his most recent post. He notes, “All we have is the text.” Of …
An atheist visitor to the site, Jnani, wrote the following in a comment:
Meaning is subjective and since we are all subjects, there is plenty of meaning in the universe. It’s only delusional to see meaning where there is none which I would contend the Christian WV does.
I have been interacting with atheists for quite a while now. Their blindness still occasionally amazes me.
“Meaning is subjective.”
Would Jnani apply this claim to itself? Is the meaning of, “Meaning is subjective” merely subjective ? If so, then Jnani’s claim is self-referentially problematic. The meaning of the claim is …
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
Atheist Matt Oxley comments on Christian responses to the shooting in Connecticut as follows:
Despite how angry this makes me, how silly and offensive I find these notions, suddenly I find myself envious of people with some form of a god to comfort them and answer their questions, even if those answers are shallow and ignorant, because I am simply without any answers that can even begin to make sense of this. Answers like this seem almost blissful.
Note that Matt is angry at the application of Christian tenets to tragic events. As I mentioned in my debate with Matt, …
Lord willing, Vocab Malone will be interviewing me on Backpack Radio this Sunday, December 16, 2012 at 6PM on KPXQ-AM in Phoenix, Arizona. You can live stream the program from this website – http://www.kpxq1360.com – or catch the recording when it goes up on this website – http://backpack.podbean.com. Make sure to tune in, and don’t forget to check out other episodes of Backpack Radio!…
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.
“Presuppositional apologetics” are the same thing as “covenantal apologetics,” but only when we recognize that presuppositions are covenantal. It is relatively uninteresting to posit that everybody has presuppositions. However, to point to the content of those presuppositions as reflecting a relationship to God is something quite different. Every person is under either the grace or the wrath of God. People view the world in virtue of their relationship to God.…