Discussion in 'Defending the Faith' started by fredtgreco, Dec 9, 2004.

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  1. Peter

    Peter Puritan Board Junior

    Bi-nity, is the example up because this thread began as a discussion of the philosophical necessity of the trinity (which btw I am still unconvinced of if considered outside other Xian presups). Only later did it develope into what it is now. I still think the Bi-nity scenario works well though. I dont think sanctification, salvation, preaching, unity, creation, power, etc are things which cannot be accomplished by an impersonal force emanating from God. But its likely a sad, cheating, blockheaded scoundrel such as myself is wrong.
  2. Monergism

    Monergism Puritan Board Freshman


    What if he had origionally claimed that the 3 days were in fact 5 for both Jesus and Jonah? It might not be a relevant difference, but how would you prove him wrong?
  3. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Good question, and I await the answer, since it will hopefully lead me closer to a greater understanding of this.
  4. Monergism

    Monergism Puritan Board Freshman

  5. Monergism

    Monergism Puritan Board Freshman

    The non-believer can change things with great significance. Since he decides to change the passages that say 3 days to 5, perhaps he tallys up the passages that address homosexuality and changes those a bit too. He is still able to keep his transcendental, but he gets to hold on to his sin. That is eternally significant!
  6. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    :amen: on that at least.

    I've never claimed that changing anything past the "five-days level" wouldn't have great implications for the rest of the system, and I fully agree with you that things like the Spirit's deity and God's character do have such implications.

    But I see your response to the five-days argument as somewhat lacking in that you're just saying that since it doesn't change the transcendental or worldview, and thus that it's just a "counterfactual." The thing is, how would you prove that it was the counterfactual, and not the three days? One response could be that changing the three days to five also changes the inerrancy of Scripture and the doctrine of Sola fact, I have just answered my own question:

    In order for someone to base a worldview on an espoused revelation telling them most of the Bible is true except such-and-such a detail, they have to reject much more from the Bible than that detail: They have to reject cessationism and Sola Scriptura! And once their worldview contains the the possibility for new revelation after the completion of the Scriptures, at that point they have changed something drastic.

    Well, in light of that, I at least with you now that it is inevitable that one must build a challenging worldview piece by piece, because the only way they can have most of the Bible in their worldview but have one certain difference is to inevitably have a second difference as well, which is the denial of cessationism and thus the sufficiency of Scripture, at which point they are beyond the realm of "safe" differences. What do you think about that, Brett?
  7. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    I agree that the five-days claim is not a relevant change per se in and of itself. However, I think that such a change inevitably carries with it a second change as well, namely the denial of cessationism and the sufficiency of Scripture - and that certainly is a relevant change.
  8. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    But a key part of our worldview is that our Scriptures were written by men who had physically seen our Savior during His Incarnation. Thus, another thing people espousing the five-day worldview would have to do in order to claim a revelation identical to the Bible apart from the three-days is to either 1) Write their Scriptures (making them identical to the Bible except on the five-days) themselves, and claim that their equiivalent of our Christ had His Incarnation during their lifetime, or 2) Produce manuscripts of their Scriptures that were dated back to whatever other time-period they claim their Savior's Incarnation occurred. Since no one has yet tried to espouse a worldview identical to Christianity except on such a minor difference as that, much less express their belief system in writing, #2 would be impossible. Therefore, they would have to claim #1 in order to espouse the worldview in question at all, and thus they would have to claim that they saw the One they call their Savior, and that He revealed to them their Scriptures. So at that point, I suppose they could in fact claim the sufficiency of their Scriptures and cessationism just like Christianity, and they would then have to be shown that they have no relevant difference (by means of your OT reference). But even for them to get that far would be a massive stretch.
  9. Monergism

    Monergism Puritan Board Freshman

    I want to be more active in this discussion, but I'm going to have to put off posting again until my exams and papers are finished on Tuesday. By then, Lord willing, I will have a little more time to think through all that has been said.

    This thread is incredibly helpful btw!
  10. crhoades

    crhoades Puritan Board Graduate

    To sidestep the above discussion and answer the skeptic in a different way...

    skep: My worldview is just the same except Christ was in there for 5 days.

    Xtian: O.K... I think that will present some problems, but I'll leave them be for a moment. If your worldview is the same as mine then you grant that there is an Almighty, Personal Creator that you have to answer to. He is also thrice Holy and you are not. He calls you to submit to him as Lord in all areas of life and turn from your autonomous reasoning and living. etc.

    By granting that much of the worldview of a Christian so as to not give you 100% the unbeliever is still acting autonomously. His problem is still that he will not call Christ Lord. This is effectively calling his/her bluff. They are trying to wiggle out of God's claim on their life. So now they have 3 positions to chose from:

    1. Change their story and get away from their hypothetical worldview and argue more humanistically.
    2. Grant the truth of the call on his life but not bow his knee and go away sad like the rich young ruler.
    3. Repent and call on the name of the Lord and be saved.

    By the grace of God, hopefully #3 occurs.

    A large part of our apologetics is to give the reason for the hope we have...i.e. get a person to see the call of the gospel on their life and have to deal with it. Not necessarily to get them into a philosophical camel clutch and tap out.

    I'd still like to see where this thread goes..just my :2cents: for now.
  11. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    But their view would claim a denial of autonomy just as much as ours in that if it were similar in every way but the five-days, they would have to believe their god elected them to their belief and was presently sustaining their belief in it. Of course I'm not denying that they actually are in fact autonomous (since they are), but just saying that we couldn't necessarily use that particular fact for our argument the same way we could with, say, an agnostic or atheist.
  12. crhoades

    crhoades Puritan Board Graduate

    When you say "their god", if they are saying that they believe in our worldview but just 3 days are 5 then they are saying they believe in Yahweh and Father, Son, Holy Ghost. Are we talking about what Paul said above is that it is the same worldview just counterfatual or are they positing a wholly new worldview of now Fafsa, Sasa, and Hasa? These are two distinct instances. On the latter there is still a matter of revelation as has already been discussed as well as the block house approach. If it is the former then there is the issue which you raised about cessation etc.

    I was going on the view that it was the Christian worldview with just changing the 3 to 5. Before one would even have to get into arguing about cessation and sola scriptura, you could confront them with the gospel. And for them to reason *hypothetically* about the 5 days without revelation would be to do it autonomously.

    I probably need to reread the thread to make sure I'm not equivocating on what is trying to be refuted.
  13. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    But again, that doesn't really give them any grounds on which to deny that Christianity is true in this life. In light of that, I guess I'm starting to see your point about how someone can make out-in-space, hypothetical theories all they want, but that unless they directly relate them to this actual life and existence, they're hardly relevant or worthy of consideration.

    I still don't have it totally "natural" in my mind by any means, and would not yet be able to fully defend the Christian worldview in a conversation of my own, but I'm starting to get more of it as the conversation progresses.
  14. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    What of a world in which the laws of logic were different? What of a universe with a dualistic existence? A world where circles could be squares? These don't make sense within our existence or laws of logic, and I don't see why we need to defend Christianity for any realm existence but the one we are actually in - if someone wants to think that Christ wouldn't have a claim on their lives in some hypothetical type of warped existence they dream up in their heads (in which laws of logic didn't make sense by the standards of our current existence), they can go for it - that doesn't pose any challenge to my thesis that Christ has a claim on their lives in this existence, which seems like the only existence in which we need to defend His claim; for we are told to be ready to make a defense for the hope that is in us, which exists in our actual realm of existence. If I'm just missing something obvious here, please point it out.
  15. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    OK, I think the Chargers example helps clarify that. Now, tell me if I'm on the right train of thought here: If someone were to say, "Well, Christ having rose from the dead doesn't have to be, either. A world in which He didn't is perfectly conceivable," would you respond by first laying out the implications that would have for the Christian worldview, and then showing the things that can't be accounted for with those implied changes in place? If so, I see the difference, because people could not do the same with the Chargers example, since they would not be able to come up with implications of a different game outcome that would negate things that are necessary for intelligibility, whereas you could come up with such implications of Christ not rising.
  16. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    No, when I mentioned Christ rising from the dead in that last post I meant Him rising from the dead at all. Sorry for not clarifying that more. Read my post again with that in mind.
  17. luvroftheWord

    luvroftheWord Puritan Board Sophomore

    First, let me just recommend that everybody that is interested in this discussion purchase the mp3's by Greg Bahnsen and Michael Butler on Transcendental Arguments: Nuclear Strength Apologetics. They are available at Bahnsen deals with the criticisms that are being raised here and I think you will find him helpful.

    Second, this discussion has died down a bit over the last day or so, but I want to try to help Paul out and take another stab at explaining this.

    The point has been made rather well, I believe, that in the nature of the case, there can be only one transcendental. To argue for more than one transcendental makes no sense, since that would mean that there are two ultimate authorities (which really means that neither authority is ultimate after all). So what I'm going to say here assumes that everybody in this thread believes there can be only one transcendental.

    Now, everybody in this thread has also granted that the Christian worldview can provide the transcendental for knowledge (if you don't grant that, I don't know why you would be a member of the Puritanboard to begin with since you need to get saved). Now, the TAG says not simply that Christianity can make sense of the world, but that Christianity is the ONLY worldview that can do this. Why is this true? Well, because Christianity itself claims to be the only one that can do this. That claim can be either true or false. If the claim is true, then there are no other possible alternatives out there that could provide the transcendental. If the claim is false, then Christianity itself is a false worldview and cannot provide the transcendental.

    So, if you grant that Christianity can provide the transcendental, you must also grant that Christianity is the ONLY one that can, because it claims that it is. And if that claim is wrong, then your claim that Christianity can provide the transcendental is also wrong. This is because you are granting that Christianity truly provides a transcendental of meaningfulness. And if Christianity is a true worldview, then so are the claims it makes.

    Yeah, Paul! :scholar::D

    [Edited on 14-12-2004 by luvroftheWord]
  18. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Thanks for recommending the mp3's, I'll definitely get those. But actually, this point is one of the main points I still am having trouble with. (Even though I obviously believe it because I follow Christ, it's fully understanding it well enough to be able to explain and defend it that I'm talking about.) If I were to tell a skeptic, "Well, ultimately there can only be one highest standard that you're treating as supremely authoritative with regard to your assumptions," and they said, "Why is that?" and asked me to illustrate why somehow, I would not be able to do it. What if they believe that they appeal to, say, the laws of logic and the reliability of the senses as the two separate, co-existent highest authorities to which they appeal. How would you show them that only one of them can be finally authoritative, and that two cannot be the co-ultimate authorities?
  19. luvroftheWord

    luvroftheWord Puritan Board Sophomore

    If there are two ultimate authorities, then your worldview cannot account for the one/many problem becuase your worldview cannot account for unity.
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