Back in the third century of the church, as I’m sure some of our readers are aware, there was a bishop named Athanasius – his tenacious defense of the doctrine of the Trinity, in opposition to the swiftly growing heresy of Arianism gave rise to the statement “Athanasius contra mundum” – Athanasius against the world. In a sense, this wasn’t quite true – there were other defenders of the Trinity around, but none so prolific, and none who were targeted nearly so heavily as Athanasius, who was ejected from his church five times, and was only vindicated after his death. …Read more
Another difficulty with religious language (and hence, Christianity) that non-religious people have concerns itself with “falsifiability,” or the aspect of any claim which states it must, in principle at least, be capable of subjecting to certain scientific criteria by which it can conceivably be proven false, in order to be considered meaningful. Like Verificationism, Falsificationism assumes an empiricist worldview, and so is subject immediately to some of the criticisms of Verificationism, including for instance, the seeming arbitrariness of the foundational principles undergirding it. Falsificationism was articulated as a way to circumvent the problems inherent in Verificationism. While Karl Popper …Read more
In our last post we looked at the centrality of the Creator/creature distinction to Christian theology, and to our apologetic. With this post, I’d like to look at the importance of it in regards to objections offered and our response to them. These objections can come in a variety of forms – the so-called problem of evil, the supposed “evil god” objections, objections to Scriptural tenets, or what have you. At bottom, however, I’d advance the theory that they all boil down to a denial of God’s transcendence. Why do I say this?
At bottom, every objection that is offered …Read more
As we spoke about in the last post, there seems to be a strangely persistent notion that emphasizing an actual distinction between the thought of God and man is a mistake. I’d like to add that there is a similar notion, despite lip-service to the concept, that emphasizing the transcendence of God in any sense is likewise considered to be a mistake of some kind. In my experience, this often stems from the fact that men are simply uncomfortable with God being absolutely other – and as such, not to be confused with anything they would be familiar with. While …Read more
Why do we expect the future to be like the past?
“Because in the past, the future has always been like the past.”
This response begs the question. It assumes the very point to be proven. In the past the future has always been like the past, yes, but why do we expect that in the future the future will be like the past?
“We don’t know for certain that the future will be like the past.”
This response misrepresents the question. It assumes the question is asking about certainty with respect to the future. But the question …Read more
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 …Read more
Chris Bolt’s interview on Backpack Radio is now available via podcast here: http://salem-kpxqam.media.streamtheworld.com/audio/backpack_radio_sun_102095191.mp3
Check it out.
Update: The commercial free podcast of this interview may be found here – http://backpack.podbean.com/2012/12/16/epistemology-apologetics-12162012…Read more
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!…Read more
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 …Read more
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 …Read more