The Trinitarian v hotel and suite moncton Theology Of Cornelius Van Til

This artist proof edition was pulled at that time and has been in my archives since 1983. Dr. Van Til signed many of my prints and drawings during the printing and publication of the original editions. Besides a few that I’m keeping for myself, these are the last I have with his v hotel and suite moncton signature. Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article “Cornelius Van Til” or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. He is perhaps best known for the development of a fresh approach to the task of defending the Christian faith.

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  • I am still referring to the most distinguished of the philosophers, and not to the common herd, whose madness in profaning the truth of God exceeds all bounds.
  • That is to say that since all our ideas and words must only have meaning when applied to phenoumanl things and God, if He exists, is noumanal we cannot talk about Him at all.
  • Both natural and special revelation would be impossible if God remained incomprehensible as He is in Himself .
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  • Porson countered, No, you must show me one man in three buggies if you can.
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For Christianity, this means beginning with the self-attesting self-revelation of the triune God. But this is not a licence to simply read the Bible in the light of any philosophical idea one likes. In my book Contemplating God with the Great Tradition I explore how theology is supposed to work. We start with exegesis and after a lot of exegetical work we begin to form doctrines. Then we deduce metaphysical implications of those doctrines and begin to shape our metaphysics. Using our developing metaphysical framework, we go back to Scripture and do more exegesis to see if our metaphysical framework needs revising or not.

Ton Van Til

Shortly thereafter Van Til formed part of the group that founded Westminster Theological Seminary in protest against Princeton’s movement in a modernist direction. He taught at Westminster for 43 years and also served a minister in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, where his writings have remained influential. Van Til is perhaps best known for his presuppositionalism, in which he argues that the dispute between Christianity and its opponents cannot be mediated by agreed-upon facts. Instead, every worldview is grounded on an unprovable basic presupposition. For non-Christian systems, this means their views must be critiqued according to internal contradictions that emerge from their inadequate starting point.

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They contained ideas that threatened the Platonic-Augustinian metaphysics. Aristotle denied, for example, that universals exist in some sort of “Third Realm” knowable by the intellect. This was dangerous because it could easily be taken in a conceptualist or even nominalist direction. Aristotle seemed like a secularizing influence directing attention to a knowledge of the natural world by sense experience rather than emphasizing the intellect knowing the world of ideas. The terms were so large and the relationships so confusing that I despaired of ever understanding what he was saying.

Van Til And Self

Personally, I think the reason Van Til can be pushed into either view, if forced, is that he was not concerned to be put into philosophical system that would be fully comprehended by the mind of man. I’m not saying he was trying to be obscure but was noting that man is never going to approach a knowledge of God through human philosophical systems and I think attempts to categorize Van Til strictly according to them are always going to be wanting. God’s revelation in nature was always meant to serve alongside His special revelation.

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In fact I was just thinking about the archtypical/ectypical distinction provides a nice solution to Kant’s thought last week. As I understand common-sense realism it can be aduquitly adopted to deal with normal everyday experiences. It actually locates itself outside of natural theology in a sense because its basic beleifs are basic not derivied other beleifs in the normal analytical understanding of beleifs. I do think this model breaks down at the presupossiotional level but it is very nice when dealing with everyday beleifs. He earned his PhD from Princeton University, and subsequently he began teaching at Princeton Seminary.

Barth And Van Til: A Comparison

Paul does not say that the wrath of God is probably revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. Scripture takes the clarity of God’s revelation for granted at every stage of human history. The God who speaks in Scripture cannot refer to anything that is not already authoratively revelational of Himself for the evidence of His own existence. This short booklet expounds upon the Apostle Paul’s visit to Athens. He knew only two classes of people, those who worship and serve the Creator and those who worship and serve the creature more than the Creator. He has once upon a time worshiped and served the creature; then on the way to Damascus he had learned to worship and serve the Creator.