Point: It’s not easy conveying the two crucial idea of Presuppositional apologetics that (1) a non-Christian worldview end up being self-refuting and (2) the non-Christian actually presupposes something entirely different than what the nonbelievers professes to be their operating worldview, but in their heart they are suppressing the truth they know of the Christian God and worldview. Cornelius Van Til and Greg Bahnsen has articulated this kind of argument. While all analogies break down, I think the following illustration might help the Reformed Apologist illustrate his or her point of what one is trying to do with Presuppositional apologetics.
Picture: I saw this news story over at Japan Times:
A hapless armed robber in his 60s broke his leg while holding up a convenience store in Chiba Prefecture, and then used the shop’s payphone to call an ambulance, according to a report and police.
The inept thief tussled with a 35-year-old store clerk after threatening him with a knife on Sunday.
The crook was disarmed in the struggle, which saw him fall to the ground and break his leg before hobbling out of the shop, the local Chiba Nippo newspaper reported.
In increasing pain and unable to get very far, the unnamed man limped back an hour later and used the payphone at the store to summon an ambulance, the paper said.
Detectives are planning to arrest the suspect when he is released from the hospital, the paper reported.
“A man in his 60s is being treated at the hospital he was taken to,” a Chiba police official said.
“As the victim (of the threat) took the knife away, the suspect could not achieve his purpose,” the official said.
There is the irony that the robber rob a store only to depend on the story’s payphone later on to call the ambulance. The robber is going against the store but at the same time dependent on the store for getting help.
POSSIBLE SCENARIO FOR EMPLOYING THIS ILLUSTRATION DURING APOLOGETIC EVANGELISM
<After employing Presuppositional apologetics in a conversation >
OPPONENT: I don’t get what you are trying to do. What’s your point.
CHRISTIAN: I’m trying to show how your worldview is self-refuting and how you actually need God to even justify the tools and argument that you are trying to use against it. I suppose an illustration would be appropriate. Did you hear the story of this recent robber in Japan?
<Give illustration >
CHRISTIAN: Do you think the robber was going against the store?
CHRISTIAN: Do you think he was also relying on the services the store provided, in this case their phone?
CHRISTIAN: In the same way I see you are doing the same thing, but with God. You are going against Him and yet at the same time relying on Him for help. That is, you are using things that He alone can provide for your communication, reasoning, etc.