Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Butler on Bahnsen and Presuppositionalism
Yesterday, the First Word blog posted the article "The Transcendental Argument for God's Existence" from Michael R. Butler in The Standard Bearer. Here is his conclusion:

In setting forth TAG [the transcendental argument for God's existence], Van Til gave the Christian apologist a powerful argument for Christian Theism. Indeed, Van Til claimed that this argument is "absolutely sound." As we have seen, however, there have been a number of objections raised against this argument. Van Til left it to his followers to answers these objections. But while in Bahnsen we find an able defense of TAG, much of what he says is merely programmatic in nature and calls for elaboration.

In the footsteps of Van Til and Bahnsen, I have endeavored to further elaborate and defend TAG against common objections. In order to do this more effectively I have surveyed the relevant philosophical literature in order to set these criticism in sharper focus and formulate the objections in the strongest possible way. In doing this, I hope to have offered a more thorough and robust defense of TAG. And though this defense of TAG is not meant to be the last word – certainly vigorous debate will continue and further refinements will need to be made – the conclusion we may draw is that none of the common criticisms of TAG are cogent. And as a corollary to this, we can justifiably maintain that TAG accomplishes just what Van Til set it out to do: establish the truth of the Christian worldview as the necessary precondition for human experience.


posted at 11:00 AM  
Comments (2)

At 2:40 PM, Blogger howertonjosh said...


Hello from a fellow SBTS student. I'm a simpleton that's read Van Til before and grasped the crux of his argument, but failed to "get" the whole thing. I just recently heard of Bahnsen. Any suggestions for a first read? Does he have a keystone work?


PS - I'm really looking for the most readable, understanable exposition of TAG I can get

At 3:13 PM, Blogger John said...


Bahnsen's simplest work is Always Ready: Directions for Defending the Faith. If you want to read Bahnsen, this book is where you should start.

But if you read this book and are still looking for something that is simplified further, then let me know!


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