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"Dead Men" Correspondence
In the following e-mail exchange, the e-mailer's comments are in black and enclosed in "greater than" and "lesser than" signs. My comments are in red.
I browsed with interest your article Dead Men Do Bleed! -- Presuppositions and Epistemologies. It's great to discover someone who really understands Biblical epistemology and apologetics!<
>I will mention 2 items FYI.
(1) The greatest apologist I know of is the late (1995) Dr. Greg Bahnsen. I mention this because since you didn't mention him in your thorough article, I assume you haven't heard of him.<
Actually, I have heard of him, but I haven't read any of his book. I thought I had one by him, but I can't seem to locate it!
>Right now I am listening to a dialog with questions and answers between Bahnsen and R.C. Sproul called "Over Apologetic Method" in which Bahnsen tries to make presuppositionalism understood by Sproul.
Using the principles you describe (and building on the great work of Cornelius Van Til, whom you *do* mention), he gave resounding philosophical defeats in a couple formal debates with popular atheists Gordon Stein and Edward Tabash, and he bested atheist George Smith in a "dialog". The formal debate he had scheduled with well-known atheist Michael Martin didn't take place: Martin backed out 2 weeks before the debate on the excuse that he didn't want the debate tape to be distributed, because that would be a source of income for the Christian organization (both sides had co-rights to the distribution). This was the excuse offered despite the fact that Martin and his colleague Gordon Stein were aware full well in advance of Bahnsen's terms.<
Sounds like interesting debates!
>But Bahnsen's work doesn't end with the demonstration of the futility of atheistic thinking. To learn more visit: www.cmfnow.com.<
I'll check the Web site out.
>Send for Covenant Media Foundation's catalog, which has Bahnsen's tapes, books and videos. Someday I may seek to earn a degree at the new Bahnsen Theological Seminary.
(2) To give you a little idea of my ministry, I think you may be interested to know that I am trying to help some friends launch a campus organization called The Harvard Freedom Society. Our first event will be an on-campus evening presentation showing how the Christian worldview is the only worldview that can make sense of the universe.
Christian students on campus can get involved and fulfill Matthew 28:19 and 1 Peter 3:15. Paul on Mars Hill had to explain to the diverse scholars how the Christian worldview is the only viable worldview out there, and that's still true today!<
If you haven't seen it, you might be interested in my article Paul in Athens (Paradigm for Modern-day Evangelism).
>In addition to the hosting the initial presentation, The Harvard Freedom Society governing officers could potentially continue the much-needed outreach by (1) providing opportunity for structured rational debate to those of differing worldviews and (2) showing videos on topics related to the goals and purposes of the Society.
DTL, I strongly believe in the objectives, purposes, and goals of The Harvard Freedom Society. On the petition to organize we say:
Proposed objective of the organization: To publish philosophical defense of the Christian Biblical worldview; to provide forum for rational debates and presentations.
Membership qualifications: Initiates will support the goals and objectives of the Society; will publicly affirm Biblical epistemology.
Describe the purposes etc.....: Like the founders of schools like Yale and Princeton, John Harvard founded THE Harvard for the sole purpose of training ministers of the Christian gospel. Much of university instruction today operates on different philosophical presuppositions than those of the founders of early US governmental and educational institutions. The Harvard Freedom Society is hereby formed with the purpose of providing philosophical defense of the Christian worldview as the only worldview that can make sense of the universe and any single fact thereof.
Describe the goals of this organization:
* Provide public presentations of philosophical character which promote a Christian Biblical epistemology and method for every moral and academic endeavor.
* Provide opportunity for those of differing worldviews to present their case in formally structured debate formats.
* Present videos and speakers on topics that advance the goals and purposes of the Society.<
Sounds like a good ministry. May God be with you.
>I appreciate your website. Wish you the best in your ministry. Feel free to write me if you wish to discuss any Biblical issues -- I'd be delighted!
I always like good dialog. Unfortunately, time and energy restraints limit the amount of Internet correspondence I can handle. It is about all I can do to keep up with my Web site and newsletter.
But feel free to browse my site and any additional comments are more than welcome!
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The above e-mail exchange was posted on this Web site in September 1997.
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