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Archive for the ‘Apologetics’ Category

shabir

This is a debate on the topic of Sin and Salvation in the Qur’an vs the Bible between Christian apologist James White and Muslim apologist Shabir Ally.  It took place at the Erasmia Hall Mosque in South Africa back in October 7th, 2013.  It has just went online a few days ago thanks to Alpha and Omega Ministries!

The moderator of the debate mentioned in the beginning of the video that this might of have been the first time a debate occurred in a Mosque in South Africa.  There is also a mention of a book that’s being worked on presently with James White and Shabir Ally.  I can’t wait to get this book when it comes out!

Enjoy!

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The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God John Frame cover

 

John Frame’s The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God is an excellent work touching on apologetics, Reformed theology, the Bible and epistemology (philosophical branch of studying how do we know what we know).

Reformed Audio ministry reads aloud various books and literature and makes them available for free and last month they read aloud chapter four from The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God.

Enjoy!

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CATERS_HONG_KONG_BUILDINGS_11

These are links related to Presuppositional apologetics (Van Tillian apologetics, Covenantal apologetics, etc) from around the World Wide Web between February 21st-28th, 2014.

What links were you blessed by?  Do share with us!

1.) Keller Quits God!–Ben Holloway on Tim Keller’s apologetic methodology.

2.) Transcendental Analysis Defeats the Anti-theism of Bart Ehrman

3.) Riddle me this!–Steve Hays on Antony Flew’s infamous parable about the invisible gardner and how it’s self-refuting.

4.) If I Had a Hammer, I’d Hammer this Point Over and Over Again–Gary DeMar on the atheist foundation.

5.) Parsing perspectivalism–Steve Hays

6.) Why I Love John Frame’s “Biblicism” & You Should Too

7.) Bill Nye Admits Loss–Thoughts from Frontline Reformed Apologetics.

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Ken Ham Bill Nye Debate 2014

 

Today (Feb. 4th, 2014) is the debate with Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis and Bill Nye the Science Guy on the topic of Creationism.  It is taking place at the Creation Museum but it will streamed online for free.

You can watch the debate live and for free if you click HERE.

Kent Hovind will also have a pre-show and a post show to discuss about the debate.  If you are interested click HERE.

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ethics under scope

Here’s a video on the Introduction to Christian Ethics that kicks off a church monthly series on Christian ethics at South Bay Alliance Church:

This lecture lays the foundation for ethics and touches on the inter-play of the Christian worldview, apologetics and Presuppositionalism.

Here’s the handout:

HAND-OUT: FOUNDATIONS FOR CHRISTIAN ETHICS

Selected Scriptures

Purpose: Today we will explore the importance of studying Christian ethics and provide a general direction of defending Christian ethics from the perspective of life and worldview so that you can live out and articulate God’s requirement in our lives.

I. What is Ethics and Christian Ethics?

Secular view: “Ethics may be defined as the philosophical study of morality..Morality has to do with right and wrong conduct and with good and bad character.”[1]

Christian view: “Ethics is theology viewed as a means of determining which persons, act and attitude receives God’s blessing and which do not.”[2]

 

II. Why Study Christian Ethics?

 

 

 

 

III. What is the Basis for Christian Ethics?

 

 

 

 

 

IV. What is the relationship of Christian ethics to Life and Worldview?

Worldview

 

Metaphysics

 

Ethics

 

Epistemology

 

 

 

 

Life

 

 

 

 

Conclusion:

 

 

 


[1] Paul W. Taylor, Problems of Moral Philosohy (Encino, CA: Dickenson Publishing Company Inc., 1972), 3.

[2] John Frame, The Doctrine of the Christian Life (Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed., 2008), 10.

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Sye doppelganger

 

Here’s a debate Sye had with an atheist about a year ago but it’s only recently loaded up online on Youtube:

Enjoy!

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image021212121

These are links between December 22nd-31st 2013.  Are there other links you think should be here as well?  Let us know!

1.) Secularism: How We Got Here.

2.) Just another question-begging atheist

3.) Van Til’s Philosophy of Education

4.) What is a Worldview? [12/29/2013]

5.) 

6.) JD Hall interview Sye on Presuppositional apologetics

7.)

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Van Til and the Limit of Reason

 

This is a book that has been recently published towards the end of 2013 by Chalcedon Foundation. This work is a compilation of writings by R.J. Rushdoony by his son Mark Rushdoony on the insight of the Christian apologist Cornelius Van Til. When I first heard about this work I wanted to get it because Rushdoony was one of Van Til’s early expositor, having written several works expounding his ideas and also applying his apologetics towards other areas as well. Rushdoony’s The One and the Many is one such example in which Van Til’s argument that the Trinity is the solution to the philosophical problem of the one and the many gets some more pages of application especially in the area of critiquing political philosophy. In Van Til and the Limit of Reasons, the first part of the book (chapters 1-3) was originally a booklet on Van Til that Rushdoony wrote for the Modern Thinkers Series in 1960. I have seen this booklet once at a used Christian bookstore years ago and haven’t been able to find it since, so I am happy to see it being republished as three chapters in this present work. I’m also happy that this will also reach a newer audience in our modern world of kindle and the internet. According to the beginning of the book, chapters four through seven are published for the first time. Chapter three is the longest chapter of the book and what seems to me the meat of the book. Rushdoony has a good and memorable analogy from the children story of the Emperor having no clothes to illustrate the task of Christian apologetics: we are exposing the uniblical worldview and philosophy around us as intellectually bankrupt and empty. In this chapter Rushdoony quotes heavily from Van Til’s syllabus Metaphysic of Apologetics and Van Til’s essay titled “Nature and Scripture” in a compilation work by Westminster Theological Seminary titled The Infallible Word. Van Til’s Metaphysic of Apologetics is better known by it’s later publication title A Survey of Christian Epistemology. On page 45 Rushdoony has an excellent discussion distinguishing the difference between ultimate and immediate starting point. This is helpful for readers who might be struggling with the objection that some people have that as human beings we practically begin our starting point with ourselves and what we experience. Van Til’s point was to distinguish between our immediate starting point and the foundation for those starting point, what he calls the ultimate starting point. One of the things I like about reading Rushdoony is following the trail of endnotes of the fascinating documentation of what people think and say. The first half of the book quotes work heavily from the first half of the twentieth century but the second half of the book even quote a work as recent as the 1990s (remember, Rushdoony died in 2001). For the end notes, there is a mistake in which chapter six is titled “Rationalism and Sentimentalism” and chapter seven is titled “The Irrationalism of Rationalism.” It should be the other way around. Examining the end notes and the date of the publication of the works cited made me realized at how old some of these chapters have been written—not necessarily a bad thing but it made me appreciate just how early Rushdoony came around to Van Til’s apologetics and further examine his heavy reading load in light of a Van Tillian framework. The fact that it was written very early also made it valuable to me in terms of historical insight; there are several instances I was surprised to see references to Herman Dooyeweerd. For instance chapter two suggests the optimism of Reformed philosophy during the early days of Dooyeweerd, Van Til and other translators of Dutch Reformed philosophy. I realized Rushdoony’s son in law later published The Twilight of Western Civilization and I can’t help but to imagine Rushdoony had something to do with it but in the end Van Til and Dooyeweerd ended up disagreeing.
I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this as the first work for someone new to Presuppositional apologetics to read; it require some familiarity with Van Til’s theme and a knowledge of philosophers such as Kant, Hume, etc. But I would recommend this if you want to see how Van Til’s idea eventually shape Rushdoony, and in turn Rushdoony’s application of Van Til here and elsewhere.

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Cornelius-Van-Til

Here’s our installment of Presuppositional apologetics links for early December (December 1st-7th, 2013).  The picture is courtesy of Calvinistic Cartoons, be sure to check them as well =)

1.)Applied Presuppositional Apologetics lecture series by Chuck Muether.

2.) Dogma, Disagreement and Doubt

3.) Apologetic Evangelism 101: Building Our Defense

4.) Antitheism Presupposes Theism (5)

5.) Vern Poythress’ Pedagogical Best Practices for the Doctrine of Inerrancy: A Contribution

6.) Two Atheists walk into a bar…only one walks out

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Jeff Durbin

Jeff Durbin Pastor of Apologia Church, Christian apologist and host of Apologia Radio just spoke recently at a class on philosophy.  Here’s the video of it:

Here’s the video’s description:

Christian Apologist and Pastor, Jeff Durbin, was invited to speak to the Philosophy of Religion class at Scottsdale Community College. Initially, this was planned as a debate between Jeff and an Atheist. After being unable to find an Atheist to participate, Jeff was invited to give a positive presentation the existence of God and the truthfulness of the Christian Worldview.

Jeff presents and defends the claim: The proof of the Christian God is that apart from Him you can’t prove anything.

This is an excellent introduction to the Christian Worldview and the Biblical Gospel. We hope you’ll feel led to share this with your friends, family, and even those hostile to the Gospel.

It’s good to see someone applying Presuppositional apologetics as taught by Cornelius Van Til.

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discussion evangelism

 

It seems to be important that when we evangelize and engage in apologetics to communicate as clearly as possible the concepts of Christian truth or the reasoning for our defense and refutation.  Thus, apologetics illustration seems to be important in the apologist’s toolbox.

The following are twenty apologetics illustration I’ve thought might be helpful that I’ve written up on over the years.

I’ve tried to include illustrations also touching on facets of Presuppositional apologetics as taught by Cornelius Van Til.

Apologetics Sermon Illustration # 20: Torching A Safe Full of Fire Works and Self-Destructive Arguments

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humpty_dumpty!

“Pastor” Jaeson Ma of the New Apostolic Reformation movement has released a new music video called “Rise and Fall.”  At core it’s a Pelagian gospel instead of a Biblical gospel.

To begin with note what is omitted in the video:  The Gospel of how Jesus Christ actually saves us from our sins through Christ’s death, burial and Resurrection.

Now I realize that not every Christian song must be a three point sermon.  I’m not imposing a harsh standard that he has to use theological terminology like “Extra calvinisticum,”  “Supralapsarian” and “Asiety.”

The criticism here is more than nit-picking on what Jaeson Ma omitted; I don’t want to conclude that Jaeson Ma’s new song is heretical based merely on an argument from silence since that would be fallacious. We must also see what is in the content of the actual song: What is it’s message?

We must ask what is every song’s message or “gospel.”  Every song does reflect a worldview; the question is, which one does it reflect, the Christian worldview or a non-Christian worldview?

But how can we discern a song’s worldview?  Ask yourself, what does the song say about

  1. Man–Is he basically good or sinful (as Romans 3:10, 3:23 teaches)?
  2. God–Is He all Love without Holiness or is He Holy, and a God of Love and Wrath?
  3. The Problem–Is man’s basic problem with sin or something else?
  4. The Solution–Is Jesus the Savior or something else has become our functional gods and saviors?

Note what Jaeson Ma says between 3:16-26:

I know I made some mistakes in my life, No matter what you do right, no matter what you do wrong, you got to know you’re just human.”

Just “mistakes?”  God has revealed in the Bible that we have more than just mistakes–we have serious sins against Him.  It’s not picking on word choice–note also after pointing out how “no matter what you do wrong,” Jaeson Ma wants to comfort his hearers with the fact that “you got to know you’re just human.”  Does the Bible ever give that as a solution for man’s wrong doing and sin–to just know we are humans?  Is knowing we are humans then make everything wrong okay?

What a terrible means of justification; it’s fall short of being Biblical.

Note what  else is in minute 3:16.  The back ground lyrics between 3:16-24 says

You can knock me down I’ll get up standing tall, we rise and fall.”

Sounds like Moralistic Therapeutic Theism to me with its emphasis on one’s own effort.  The whole song has that theme but it’s at minute 3:16 that the content clearly is antithetical to gospel both with what Jaeson Ma has to say and the background chorus.  Come to think of it, it’s ironic that Jaeson Ma’s 3:16 is contrary to John 3:16, since one presuppose sin (John 3:17) while Ma present Moralistic Therapeutic Theism assurance that we’re just human.

That is not the Biblical Gospel since the Bible shares that the Gospel is about Jesus Christ who died and rise for our sins when Adam and all mankind has fallen.

The most disturbing part of the song that brings the brightest clarity that Jaeson Ma is preaching the Gospel of Pelagianism is towards the end of the song between 3:35-42:

Hold on to Hope.  Know that inside of you, there’s something good, so rise up.”

Jaeson Ma’s message is contrary to the biblical understanding of man’s total depravity.  Note how his lyrics contradict Romans 3:1-12:

as it is written,

“There is none righteous, not even one;
11 There is none who understands,
There is none who seeks for God;
12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless;
There is none who does good,
There is not even one.”

No doubt some might object that Jaeson Ma’s song can’t be heretical because it has a picture of Jesus.  Merely having a picture of Jesus doesn’t make one song Christian.  The question is whether or not the song is faithful to Jesus’ message.

In conclusion, Jaeson Ma’s Pelagian gospel attempt to rise, but it fall because of his lack of depth in understanding about the Fall.

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Vern Poythress

This is a lecture that Dr. Vern Poythress, professor at Westminster Theological Seminary.  It was delivered on April 8th, 2013 for a conference, called “Pensmore Dialogues on Science and Faith.”  It took place at the Patrick Henry College.  Dr. Poythress spoke for the second session and the title of his lecture is “Why the Beginning is Important and Why People Fight about it

Enjoy!

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3982591_orig

These are links on Presuppositional apologetics from around the Web between October 22nd-31st.  Enjoy!

1.) The Christian World View: Rational Predispositions That Support Truth

2.) Jack Kettler on Mormonism

3.) Antitheism Presupposes Theism (3)

4.) Facebook Epistemology [10/27/2013]

5.) Are Atheists Just Guessing? A follow up on a broken thought

6.) The Rape of Morality

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SWy6ibx

The following are links on Presuppositional apologetics between October 15th-21st, 2013.  Enjoy!

1.) Review of Van Til’s An Introduction To Systematic Theology

2.) Van Tilian Poetry

3.) Presuppositions and Harmonization: Luke 23:47 as a Test Case By Vern Poythress

4.) Peripatetic 20 – Islam and the Continuing Assertions of Yasser Ali

5.) A recent teaching by Jeff Durbin on Presuppositional apologetics:

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