Throughout my approach to apologetics on this website you will notice, where worldview is the subject, that I condense all decisions, alternatives, and options down to God or Man. The whole enterprise of Christian apologetics sums up in one decision regarding an ultimate reference point. Either human knowledge is dependent on God, or, it is not. Either man can know facts about the world without God’s help or man is dependent on God for all he knows.There is no middle ground. The Christian worldview teaches that our ultimate reference point for what is true, our standard, how we evaluate and assess truth claims is Scripture alone. The Christian claim is that Scripture is God speaking, and acting in history to reveal Himself as he works in creation to redeem a people to himself. Below is an outline form of this argument:
- There must be an ultimate reference point (URP) for all truth claims if skepticism is to be avoided.
- Either God or Man is the URP for all truth claims.
- If Man is the URP for all truth claims, we must identify which man?
- If we must identify which man is the URP for all truth claims, then we must identify why that man.
- If we must identify the criteria for that man, then we must identify the criteria for the criteria.
- If we must identify the criteria for the criteria, then we end in an infinite regress.
- If we end in an infinite regress, then we cannot identify the criteria.
- if we cannot identify the criteria, we cannot identify which man is the URP for truth claims.
- If we cannot identify the man who is the URP for all truth claims, skepticism is unavoidable.
- We cannot identify which man is the URP for all truth claims.
- Therefore, if the man who is the URP for all truth claims cannot be identified, skepticism is true. [in other words, if man is the URP for all truth claims, there is no URP for all truth claims. See #1]
- If skepticism is true, we cannot know anything.
- If we cannot know anything, then we cannot know skepticism is true.
- Therefore, skepticism cannot be true because skepticism is self-refuting (or false).
- Since Skepticism is self refuting, man cannot be the URP for truth claims.
- See 2 above.
- Therefore, God is the URP for all truth claims.
For those of you who are into formal logic, you will notice that #2 is a disjunctive syllogism:
God v Man
This section is one of the most critical sections on my website. The apologetic approach of Christian theism lives or dies with your view on the nature of Scripture. It you are going to defend Christianity, you must be willing to invest significant time grasping what Scripture teaches about itself. Failure to do so will inevitably lead to disastrous results. As you can see above, to argue that anyone other than God could be the ultimate reference point for truth claims leads to irrationalism and ultimately skepticism. This is why Cornelius Van Til argued vociferously that all non-Christian thought inevitably and unavoidably reduces to irrationalism. The failure of many apologists to understand this and to make it a basic strategy in their apologetic has led to unnecessary confusion and quite naturally, an ineffective witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
This section will deal with three major areas: a defense of Scripture; a defense of the Canon; understanding Textual Criticism/Studies.
If you desire to learn more about the Bible, click any link below to be taken to a tutorial on that subject.
|The Formation of the Bible
|In Defense of Scripture