Monday, April 21, 2014

A Reply to Dave McPhillips on Bahnsen’s Treatment of the Problem of Evil

A visitor to my blog posting under the name Dave McPhillips recently submitted a comment in response to my blog entry titled Greg Bahnsen on the Problem of Evil.

Here is what Dave wrote:
The problem of evil is not a problem for the believer but rather a problem for the unbeliever. what Bahnsen and Van Til were teaching is that if one wishes to hold a moral complaint against anything in this world one must have a standard of morality with which to evaluate between good and evil.Moreover,one must first define what they mean by "evil" given their espoused worldview and how that definition is meaningful. As a Christian I have a standard of morality by which to distinguish good from evil (i.e. the holy character of God) but as an unbeliever who holds that we live in a random chance universe that is material in nature, there would be no objective immaterial invariant moral standard with which to evaluate right and wrong. in the end all unbelieving systems of thought relegate morality to the realm of subjective relativism. if so, then who's to say whats right or wrong? it would simply be different strokes for different folks.
Those who have read my above-linked blog entry will note that Dave does not interact directly with what I have stated there. Nor does Dave make any attempt to defend Bahnsen's proposed solution to the problem of evil.
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Sunday, April 13, 2014

On the Claim to Have Experienced “the Supernatural”

A frequent visitor to my blog recently posed the following question:
Also Dawson there has been something that i always wanted to ask you, what do you think of people whom always claimed to have experianced the supernatural? how do you explain stuff like that in an objectivist worldivew
So how does Objectivism explain people who claim to have experienced the supernatural?
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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Incinerating Presuppositionalism: Year Nine

Today is the ninth anniversary of Incinerating Presuppositionalism! Yes, that’s right – on March 26, 2005, I posted my first entry on this blog. So as I do on every birthday my blog has, I am posting the list of entries that I published over the previous year, since the last birthday.

This past year has seen a huge amount of activity. Yes, I’ve been quite busy with my blog, especially over the past six months. Somehow, in spite of my hectic schedule of a full workload, raising my daughter, dodging six-foot long reptiles, etc., I’ve managed to find time to continue arguing for my verdicts and telling the world what I’ve learned.

So without any further ado, here’s this year’s list in continued enumeration:
303. On the Validity of the Senses - April 3, 2013
307. Klouda-ing the Issue - June 21, 2013
308. TAG Defeated in One Fell Swoop - June 26, 2013
311. Presuppositionalist Pseudolosophy - August 21, 2013
312. Hodge’s Hedgings - August 24, 2013
313. STB: Three Years and Counting - August 27, 2013
315. My August Comments to B.C. Hodge - September 29, 2013
316. The Primacy of the Inner over the Outer - October 17, 2013
318. Behold How the Holy Ones Speak - October 24, 2013
319. Reason vs. Faith - October 26, 2013
320. Twerking for Jesus - October 31, 2013
322. The Moral Code of Life - November 6, 2013
324. For Jonathan - November 14, 2013
325. Examining Stefan’s Presuppositionalism - November 16, 2013
344. Jason Lisle on Logic - March 9, 2014
345. On Romans 1:20-21 - March 10, 2014
346. Jason Lisle on Axioms - March 14, 2014
350. A Logical God? - March 24, 2014
As you will see, Year Nine covered a lot of ground! As has been in the past, nothing has changed – I still have lots more in store for IP in the coming weeks, months and years.
So stay tuned, but try to be patient as I’m quite busy these days. At this time, I am relocating to a new condo in central Bangkok, so over the next few weeks I will be quite busy. Then I will need to adjust to new surroundings, which will be crowded with people instead of reptiles and other creeping things. I won’t miss the four-, six- and eight-legged critters (at all!), but living in a very densely populated part of an enormous city will take some getting used to. Well, it’s all part of the adventure of life!
by Dawson Bethrick


Monday, March 24, 2014

A Logical God?

Christian apologists are continually telling us that their god is logical, that its own nature is the standard of logic, and that everything that it does is impeccably logical. Now of course we do not learn this from the bible itself; rather, we hear it from Christians who have taken courses at some bible college or seminary, or from other believers who are simply repeating what they’ve heard such Christians say. As such, it represents an attempt by apologists to acquire “rights” to logic, as if there could be no logic if their god did not exist.

But if the actions ascribed to the Christian god as they are characterized throughout the bible are supposed to be “logical,” I can only suppose that Christians mean something other than what I learned about when I took courses on logic back in my college days.
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Sunday, March 23, 2014

I Reject Christianity Because It’s Not True, Part IV

The following is the fourth and final installment in my little mini-series of blog entries examining reactions by James Anderson to “four common objections” to Christianity, which can be found on the Gospel Coalition’s article titled I Reject Christianity Because _______________.

The previous installments in this series can be found here:
In the present entry, I will examine Anderson’s reaction to the fourth common objection raised in the Gospel Coalition’s article.
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Friday, March 21, 2014

I Reject Christianity Because It’s Not True, Part III

This is the third of four installments that I am posting in response to comments made by James Anderson’s reactions “four common objections” to Christianity that can be found in the Gospel Coalition’s article I Reject Christianity Because _______________. (The two previous installments can be found here: Part I and Part II.)

The third common objection to Christianity found in that article has to do with the resurrection of Jesus and is presented in the form of a question:
On what basis do you believe Jesus actually—physically—rose from the dead (besides blind faith, of course)?
Anderson responds:
I have faith that Jesus rose from the dead, but it isn't a blind faith, because there's good reason to believe he did.
At least Anderson does not say “on the basis of assuming that Jesus really did rise physically from the dead.” But what he does offer is not much better than this. Rather, the impression seems to be that Anderson (like so many Christians) accept the gospel story first and then seek for some way to rationalize that acceptance by coming up with “reasons” which are typically not at all persuasive, but which people who have already accepted the belief claim in question would already find acceptable.
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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I Reject Christianity Because It’s Not True, Part II

I continue now with the second installment of my examination of James Anderson’s responses to “four common objections” to Christianity found in the paper I Reject Christianity Because _______________ which was recently posted on the The Gospel Coalition website. (For the initial installment in this series, see Part I.)

The second objection posed to Anderson is the problem of evil:
In his Pulitzer Prize-winning play J.B., Archibald MacLeish nails it when his character Nickles declares: "If God is God, he is not good; if God is good, he is not God." How can you believe in a God who would allow so much senseless evil and suffering in the world?
In response to this, Anderson writes:
Nickles gets it exactly backwards. God is by nature good; if God isn't good, he isn't really God. Or to be more precise: if there's no good God, there's no God at all.
Of course, it would be quite easy to imagine an evil god just as Anderson wants to imagine an all-good god that is on cozy terms with evil. And of course, the evil god would probably want us to think that it’s all-good, and it would likely call itself all-good. And if it rules by fear (cf. Prov. 1:7 et al.), it would want its believers to resist questioning this on pain of that fear.
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