Saturday, June 23, 2007

A Place for Truth

In an age where uncertainty is disguised as "epistemological humility" and any claim to certainty and objective truth is considered absurd and arrogant, can today's Christian's make any claim to know the truth?

Many people, callling themselves Christian would say no but I answer with an emphatic YES! and this is why.

Knowing the Truth for Certain is a result of Salvation

"If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." John 8:31-32


This verse follows the logical form of the if, then statement.
If you abide in my word....If you study it, live by it, love it, obey it, conform to it, submit to it...continually.
  • You are truly my disciples...True believers are discerned from false believers in their relationship to the word of Christ, indeed, the word of God.
  • You will know the truth...surprisingly, those who have an ongoing relationship with Jesus Christ, Jesus, the Son of God who is truth incarnate (John 14:6), who cannot lie, says they will know the truth. This very fact flies in the face of post modernism. Certainty of truth is a result of salvation by the Spirit of God through the Word of God.
  • The truth will set you free...Free from all lies, free from sinful living, free from worldly philosophies and false ideologies.
Knowing the Truth is a means of Sanctification

Sanctify them in the truth, your word is truth. John 17:17


Truth is the means by which we are sanctified. If truth is ambiguous, uncertain, and unclear, then sanctification seems impossible. Yet Jesus prays for the sanctification for those that the Father had given him, and goes on to say, "your word is truth." God's Word does not just contain truth, but it IS truth. Everything against it is against truth. The Scriptures are clear, the Scriptures are truth, the Scriptures are the means by which we are sanctified.

Rejection of Truth is a strong indicator of Unbelief

The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved." 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10

Notice the last portion of this text. These people mentioned, those who are perishing will not be saved why? Because the refused to love the truth. Rejection of the truth prevented them from being saved. Notice the first part. The lawless one performs false signs..signs that are not authentic or true. A rejection of truth leads to being deceived by that which is opposed to the truth. If you despise truth, if you do not "know the truth" then the warning light should be flashing, for that is an indicator that you have not been born again of the Spirit of truth (John 13:17, John 16:13). If you have been born again of the Spirit, and are abiding in the Word of God, then the Spirit of truth will guide you in the truth as Jesus has infallibly promised. Can we know the truth for certain? Yes we can, because the Spirit of truth WILL guide us into all the truth.

Those who try to blend postmodern ideas of uncertainty and ambiguity with Christianity are attempting to blend to things that are antithetical. Uncertainty is antithetical to the certainty of the Scriptures. Subjectivity is antithetical to the objectivity of the Word of God. Rejecting certainty is not "epistemological humility," it is rebellion against the truth, rebellion against the Scriptures, and ultimately rebellion against the one TRUE God.

As John MacArthur states in The Truth War,

Speaking Plainly: If you are one of those who questions whether truth is really important, please don't call your belief system Christianity," because that is not what it is."

10 comments:

Rhett said...

Good post Josh.

I wholeheartedly agree.

Scribe said...

Hmm, the employment of the "hermeneutics of humility"...what gross error. The post-modern would be too overt to flat-out deny the perspicuity of scripture, so he does it a circuitous manner. This truly is a truth war.

Gordan said...

Truth as an agent/means of Christian sanctification is pitifully under-taught in our day.

You wanna lead a holy life before your God? You need to be saturated in His Word. It's not "Let go and let God," but rather, "Grab your Bible and don't let go."

Deviant Monk said...

Those who try to blend postmodern ideas of uncertainty and ambiguity with Christianity are attempting to blend to things that are antithetical. Uncertainty is antithetical to the certainty of the Scriptures. Subjectivity is antithetical to the objectivity of the Word of God.

Why not the same critique of trying to blend modernism born out of the Enlightenment with Christianity? After all, the whole idea of the objectivity of truth is completely wrapped up within Western modernism. We seem to think that truth is only meaningful or actual if it can be verfied through the matrix of the scientific method. (undergirded by the unquestion presupposition of rationalism) Hence, the uneasy relationship that certain segments of Christianity have had with science and historical and critical approaches to the scriptures.

The largest problem I see with the insitence upon objective truth as the foundation of christianity is that it begins to abstract Truth as a concept from its orginator in God.

God is the source of truth; however, God is not an object. Therefore, God cannot be epistemologically approached or apprehended as one would physics or mathematics or whatever else. Yet this is precisely the approach that many segments of Christianity have taken; apologetics especially falls prey to this line of thinking, in that we try to 'prove' the existence of God, the reliability of the scriptures, etc., when such things, based on the very presuppositions of faith which undergird Christianity, are impossible to do. If truth could ultimately be determined objectively, that would mean that God could be apprehended objectively, which would place God on the same epistemological level as creation. Thus, knowing God would be no different than knowing 2+2=4.

However, since truth flows from God, and God is not an objective truth, it seems more natural and theologically preferable to understand that truth is ultimately subjective and subjectively apprehended. Since God is is the source of truth, and God is the ultimate, then God is absolute subjectivity. To approach absolute subjectivity then couldn't be by means of objective determinations, but rather through the subjective epistemology.

For example- we know each other both objectively and subjectively- objectively I know that a person is such and such a height and has this hair color, this eye color, looks this way, etc. However, such an appraisal of the person is ultimately superficial and tells me absolutely nothing about the truth of who somebody is. Subjectively, however, is where we really begin to know and learn about each other. Through the relationality of subjectivity, we can go beyond the bare objective truth of each other and begin to understand the perhaps more real and actual truth about who we are.

In relation to God, this is precisely how God has interacted with humanity through history. While we may be able to know some things objectively about God, like that God created everything, etc., such a bare understanding of God is less than the truth about God that comes from being relationally untied to God in faith. Faith, after all, necessarily goes beyond objectivity because it has to- that's why Hebrews says that faith is certainity of what isn't seen.

The Word of God isn't an objectvie document that lays out all the facts about God. The scriptures themselves tell us that the scriptures are alive. However, without the relationality that comes from being united to God through faith, (which is subjective) the scriptures are absolutely worthless, whether they be objectively verifiable or not.

Within the Reformed context, I would think you would agree with this. After all, isn't it a tenet of Reformed theology that somebody can't respond to God unless God supernaturally and infallibly regenerates them to be able to understand and respond? If that's the case, the objectivity of truth is already denied, for if truth were objective in the way that modernism has defined for us and under which this post seems to operate, the supernatural actuation of grace upon somebody's mind and heart and spirit would be unnecessary since they should be able to rationally appropriate the truth that is objectively present.

However, reformed theology argues that everyone is so naturally mired in sin that they cannot perceive and respond to the truth of God unless God regenerates them. If sin is such an impediment to understanding objective truth, then it would seem that it no longer could actually be called objective truth.

Rejecting certainty is not "epistemological humility," it is rebellion against the truth, rebellion against the Scriptures, and ultimately rebellion against the one TRUE God.

If one attemts to attain certainty based upon objective criterion, one will always fall short. The sheer limitations of the human mind and experience and ability to understand even the natural world, let alone the supernatural world, would seem to mitigate against such a possibility from the outset.

As already mentioned, the scriptures themselves indicate that certainty comes from faith. Faith, by its very nature, isn't based upon an objective determination of truth; if it was, it wouldn't be faith, it would be the same as believing in God the same as one believe a mathematical equation.

To not allow for epistemological humility is to completely fall into unmitigated rationalism, which unquestionably assumes the ability of the human rationality to objectively apprehend truth. Such a perspective, however, rather than upholding truth, simply makes the human rationality the ultimate arbiter of what is and what isn't truth, which would seem to be quite idolatrous. Because of this, it is difficult for me to fathom why Christians would want to couple Christianity with such a notion.

Speaking Plainly: If you are one of those who questions whether truth is really important, please don't call your belief system Christianity," because that is not what it is."

This statement doesn't really deal with this issue at hand- it simply lumps two completely different categories into one. Just because somebody doesn't think that truth is ultimately objective or objectively apprehended doesn't mean that person feels that truth is not important.

Joshua A. Hitchcock said...

Why not the same critique of trying to blend modernism born out of the Enlightenment with Christianity?

Yes, I welcome the same crituque of modernism. Modernism did have the idea of objective truth, but their problem is that they believed objective truth was realized through the scientific method. I do not believe that is true. Postmodernism reacted to the errors of modernism, but went to the other extreme which is equally bad.

"After all, the whole idea of the objectivity of truth is completely wrapped up within Western modernism."

No, not really....again as stated above, Modernism sought objective truth through the scientific method, not in the univeral, unchangeable reality of God.

"Therefore, God cannot be epistemologically approached or apprehended as one would physics or mathematics or whatever else."

Yes, God is not bound to material as you and I are. But he is a Being. And when God took on flesh, He did become an object. Christ is the divine Logos, and because of Christ, we can epestimologically approach God. Also, God has revealed himself in the Scriptures would he would have us to know of himself. So we can epistemologically approach God in the scriptures as well.

"If truth could ultimately be determined objectively, that would mean that God could be apprehended objectively, which would place God on the same epistemological level as creation. Thus, knowing God would be no different than knowing 2+2=4."

Deviant,
Truth can be understood objectively, but not without faith. The problem with the modernist movement is that they sought truth either based on reason or emericism. Without the element of faith, truth can never be attained. Knowing God is far different from knowing 2+2. However, a postmodern would also critique your assesment of 2+2=4, since the numerical system is "man made." They would miss the connection all together that even mathematics comes from God.

By throwing out subjectively experiencing God, you have a cold, dead Christianity. By throwing out objective, doctrinal Christianity, you don't have Christianity. Yes we experience God each individually and subjectively, by the subject flows from the objective, not the other way around. We experience God (subjective)because of what He has chosen to reveal about himself in His word(objective).

"The Word of God isn't an objectvie document that lays out all the facts about God."

No, I am sure the scriptures don't tell us everything about God, because I don't think sinful humanity could handle it. Yet at the same time, The Word of God is an objective document that lays out the facts about God he has chosen to give us. Again you have this wrong as well.

"The scriptures themselves tell us that the scriptures are alive."

But if the Scripture is not objective, then how do you suppose I believe they are alive?

However, without the relationality that comes from being united to God through faith, (which is subjective) the scriptures are absolutely worthless, whether they be objectively verifiable or not.

So the Scriptures are powerless before salvation? How do people get saved then. I say the Scriptures our powerful to translate sinful humanity from the kingdom of darkness rather than light.

"If that's the case, the objectivity of truth is already denied, for if truth were objective in the way that modernism has defined for us and under which this post seems to operate, the supernatural actuation of grace upon somebody's mind and heart and spirit would be unnecessary since they should be able to rationally appropriate the truth that is objectively present."

No, this post does not ascribe to modernism. Again, you fail to understand this. I do not advocate rationalism without faith, or without the supernatural working of God in a believers life. John 17:17 says that understanding the truth is not a work of modernist rationalism but a work of the Spirit. But the SPirit does guide us into ALL truth..So truth can be attained by the guiding, not apart from, the work of the Spirit.

"If sin is such an impediment to understanding objective truth, then it would seem that it no longer could actually be called objective truth."

What!? Deviant...did you think before you wrote that sentence. That would be like saying because I hate fish, I cannot call it fish anymore. How foolish.

"Such a perspective, however, rather than upholding truth, simply makes the human rationality the ultimate arbiter of what is and what isn't truth, which would seem to be quite idolatrous."

Again, you fail to understand our position. You seem to arguing against the rationalism of modernism which, we too, have serious problems with. I heavily disagree that absolute truth is found in human rationality, it is found in God. While I am also not an advocate of irrational Christianity, since God gave us rational minds, yet rational should not be separated from the work of the Holy Spirit.

Deviant, you fail to understand the basic elements of reformed theology. You are trying to argue against the rationalism of modernism that believes truth is found through the scientific method, which we too would argue against. Your comment doesn't even deal with what we believe at all. Just because we believe there is a such thing as objective truth, and that it is found in the Scriptures alone, does not mean we follow modernist thinking. In fact, modernist would reject reformed theology. Modernists were typically naturalist, trying to find natural explanations and getting rid of the supernatural through the scientific method. Hopefully you can see the difference.

Joshua A. Hitchcock said...

"Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, remember the former things of old; for I am God and there is no other; I am God and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, "My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose, calling a bird of prey from the east, the man of my counsel from a far country. I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass; I have purposed, and I will do it." Isaiah 46:8-11

"The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, "The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children's children, to the third and the fourth generation." Exodus 33:6-7

How's that for some objective truth claims from God Himself! :)

Gordan said...

Deviant,

I think Josh has rightly pointed out that we all (the Mafia and you) reject the presuppositions of modernism.

I actually found myself in great agreement with much of what you wrote above. Most of it, in fact.

My one demurrer would be this: Our belief in knowable, objective truth about God is not nearly as absolute as you posit.

We believe the Scripture has revealed some objectice truths about God in a fashion that is both reliable and understandable. We don't believe that holding this truth causes us to know God exhaustively.

We know some truth reliably, including some truth about God (which remains true even if we don't believe it or experience it.) But none of us would claim to know all there is. We know some of what has been revealed.

I think we'd all agree with you that there is a valid and vital element to our knowledge of God which is subjective. I believe we learn of God as we love, fear, and obey God. (Because the Bible teaches that, btw.)

Deviant Monk said...

Yes, God is not bound to material as you and I are. But he is a Being. And when God took on flesh, He did become an object. Christ is the divine Logos, and because of Christ, we can epestimologically approach God. Also, God has revealed himself in the Scriptures would he would have us to know of himself. So we can epistemologically approach God in the scriptures as well.

Firstly, I would argue that God as being is different from the created order as being. Since God in God's 'being', by virtue of being other, transcends our epistemological means, that would mitigate against knowing anything objectively about God. Otherwise, God would be object like the rest of creation.

You mentioned the incarnation and the scriptures. Re:the incarnation- rather than being the objective means of revelation that you imagine, this is probably the most subjective means of revelation and knowing possible. The incarnation of the Logos wasn't about giving us an objective epistemological means to God; rather, the entire crux of the Incarnation, to invoke Athanasius, is that "God became like humanity so that humanity could become like God." The incarnation was about relationally reconciling humanity to God and the re-union of humanity with God. Such an approach to God is ultimately subjective, for one comes into union with the pure subjectivity that is God.

Let's assume the scriptures are objective. (which is a fairly unreasonable assumption, IMO.) One still has to engage the scriptures through interpretation, which ultimately means the personal subjectivity of the interpreter would trump whatever preconceived objectivity may or may not exist within the scriptures. Thus, claiming the scriptures as an objective revelation of God seems to be unreasonable.

Couple that with the fact that scriptures don't exist on their own but within the stream of christian history and belief, and you have a set of documents that aren't a collection of objective facts about God but are a part of the living body of faith that found its source in Christ.

By throwing out subjectively experiencing God, you have a cold, dead Christianity. By throwing out objective, doctrinal Christianity, you don't have Christianity.

Doctrinal christianity isn't necessarily predicated upon the objective. The doctrines of the church are born out of the church's experience with God, and Christ, and the apostolic tradition out of which it was born. Granted, doctrines tend to take on propositional forms, but those propositions are the explication of the experience of the church, rather than the basis. Christ in the incarnation is the foundation of Christianity, which flows down through the apostolic tradition. Such a stream, being ultimately relational, thus becomes predicated upon the subjective relation of the Church to God.

Yes we experience God each individually and subjectively, by the subject flows from the objective, not the other way around. We experience God (subjective)because of what He has chosen to reveal about himself in His word(objective).

I completely disagree. God revealed Godself in the Incarnation- the scriptures certainly testify to that, but the Incarnation is the paramount of God's self-revelation.

Humanity's experience with God is wholly dependent upon that, and so the experience of God flows from the subjective relationality of Christ to humanity in general, and the church in particular.

So the Scriptures are powerless before salvation? How do people get saved then. I say the Scriptures our powerful to translate sinful humanity from the kingdom of darkness rather than light.

As much as you think I misunderstand Reformed thought, Reformed theology is certainly clear that sinful humanity is incapable of understanding the scriptures toward salvation without the prior movement/work of God to regenerate them and make them capable of understanding the scriptures. After all, how often have I heard it quoted at me that no one seeks God, no one understands, etc.

The scriptures, though inspired by God, are simply dead words on a page apart from the power of the Holy Spirit. The scriptures don't, as words on a page, move anyone from darkness to light; the Holy Spirit does.

No, this post does not ascribe to modernism. Again, you fail to understand this. I do not advocate rationalism without faith, or without the supernatural working of God in a believers life. John 17:17 says that understanding the truth is not a work of modernist rationalism but a work of the Spirit. But the SPirit does guide us into ALL truth..So truth can be attained by the guiding, not apart from, the work of the Spirit.

The thing about faith, however, is that it must, by definition, go beyond what is supposed to be objective truth. If it didn't have to, then objective truth would be capable of providing epistemological access to God.

Consider this: Plenty of people had access to 'objective' truth about God in the incarnation- they could see Christ, they could listen to his words, touch his skin; they knew where he lived, who his mother was, etc. However, clearly simply apprehending the incarnation in this way was not salvific. Even the 'objective' hearing of the words of Christ (some of which were written down in the scriptures) meant little in regards to truth. The truth was not simply embodied in a 30-something jewish man who claimed to be the Son of God who people could objective access; the truth was embodied in the person of Christ which could only be accessed salvifically in a relational way. Christ talked about knowing the truth and that the truth would set free- well, he also said that he was the Truth. Thus, truth wasn't embodied objectively but rather was wrapped up in the subjective relation to the truth which was Christ.

What!? Deviant...did you think before you wrote that sentence. That would be like saying because I hate fish, I cannot call it fish anymore. How foolish.

I don't understand how your statement bears any relation whatsoever to my point.

You seem to arguing against the rationalism of modernism which, we too, have serious problems with.

Very well.

I heavily disagree that absolute truth is found in human rationality, it is found in God.

My only caveat would be that God is the only absolute truth.

You are trying to argue against the rationalism of modernism that believes truth is found through the scientific method, which we too would argue against.

If I have been mistaken about your perspective, I apologize.

Just because we believe there is a such thing as objective truth, and that it is found in the Scriptures alone, does not mean we follow modernist thinking.

If objective truth is found in the scriptures alone, I think you are going to run into some very major problems.

1. You still have interpret the scriptures, which is going to be mediated by the personal subjectivity of the interpreter. If such a subjective approach can epistemologically access "objective truth", then your approach seems to make your rationality the arbiter of what is objective truth, which is really no different than the approach taken by the scientific method.

2. What possible reason would you have for believing the scriptures to be the only source of objective truth? If they alone contain objective truth, you have no objective means of determining this, unless you are going to capitulate to the categories of modern criticism, which will 1. probably invalidate your belief 2. again cause you to rely upon the principles of the scientific method and rationalism to make this determination.

Joshua A. Hitchcock said...

"Firstly, I would argue that God as being is different from the created order as being. Since God in God's 'being', by virtue of being other, transcends our epistemological means, that would mitigate against knowing anything objectively about God. Otherwise, God would be object like the rest of creation."

By claiming to say there is objective truth about God, in no way necessitates the conclusion that "God would be object like the rest of creation." By claiming that there is objective truth about God simply, and try to understand this simple truth, means that there are things we can know about God universally, cross culturally, that are clearly taught in Scripture, like God is Holy, God is Loving, God is Just, and many more.


You mentioned the incarnation and the scriptures. Re:the incarnation- rather than being the objective means of revelation that you imagine, this is probably the most subjective means of revelation and knowing possible.

Really? How do you say this?

The incarnation of the Logos wasn't about giving us an objective epistemological means to God;

Really? Did you receive a divine revelation of this?

"No one has ever seen God; the only God (Jesus Christ) who is at the Father's side, he has made him known." John 1:18...Read that carefully...through the incarnation of Christ...which is what this passage is talking about (see John 1:14) says that through the incarnation, Jesus Christ has made the invisible God known.

The Greek Word for known exēgeomai, more rightly means that he has declared, or he has unfolded or unraveled the things of God. In other words, by the incarnation, Jesus Christ has unfolded, declared, things about God that otherwise we would have never known. So through the incarnation we can epistemologically know something of God, although it not be exhaustive knowledge.

rather, the entire crux of the Incarnation, to invoke Athanasius, is that "God became like humanity so that humanity could become like God." The incarnation was about relationally reconciling humanity to God and the re-union of humanity with God.

Yes, I would say that is the primary purpose of the incarnation, but that does not take away from the truth that the incarnation does reveal something to us about the ontology of God. Jesus is God, and by knowing Jesus, we know God.

Such an approach to God is ultimately subjective, for one comes into union with the pure subjectivity that is God.


God is the pure subjectivity? Is that in the Bible...I don't think so.

Let's assume the scriptures are objective. (which is a fairly unreasonable assumption, IMO.)

Really, then how is your position more reasonabily. You are simply assuming that they are not objective.

One still has to engage the scriptures through interpretation, which ultimately means the personal subjectivity of the interpreter would trump whatever preconceived objectivity may or may not exist within the scriptures. Thus, claiming the scriptures as an objective revelation of God seems to be unreasonable.

Couple that with the fact that scriptures don't exist on their own but within the stream of christian history and belief, and you have a set of documents that aren't a collection of objective facts about God but are a part of the living body of faith that found its source in Christ.


I will respond to this portion a bit later, but now I have to go to work.



Doctrinal christianity isn't necessarily predicated upon the objective. The doctrines of the church are born out of the church's experience with God, and Christ, and the apostolic tradition out of which it was born.

This is entirely incorrect. The doctrines of the church, are born out of the church's understanding of Scripture. Good try though.


Granted, doctrines tend to take on propositional forms, but those propositions are the explication of the experience of the church, rather than the basis. Christ in the incarnation is the foundation of Christianity, which flows down through the apostolic tradition. Such a stream, being ultimately relational, thus becomes predicated upon the subjective relation of the Church to God.



I completely disagree. God revealed Godself in the Incarnation-....but the Incarnation doesnt tell us anything of God, so this statement according to your view is pointless.

the scriptures certainly testify to that, but the Incarnation is the paramount of God's self-revelation. But if the Scriptures are not true, then who cares what they testify to.

Humanity's experience with God is wholly dependent upon that, and so the experience of God flows from the subjective relationality of Christ to humanity in general, and the church in particular.

So the Scriptures are powerless before salvation? How do people get saved then. I say the Scriptures our powerful to translate sinful humanity from the kingdom of darkness rather than light.

As much as you think I misunderstand Reformed thought, Reformed theology is certainly clear that sinful humanity is incapable of understanding the scriptures toward salvation without the prior movement/work of God to regenerate them and make them capable of understanding the scriptures. After all, how often have I heard it quoted at me that no one seeks God, no one understands, etc.


Yes the human is unable to understand...but God is powerful to give them understanding and he has chosen to do this through the method of preaching the gospel.

The scriptures, though inspired by God, are simply dead words on a page apart from the power of the Holy Spirit. The scriptures don't, as words on a page, move anyone from darkness to light; the Holy Spirit does.

I agree completely with this.

No, this post does not ascribe to modernism. Again, you fail to understand this. I do not advocate rationalism without faith, or without the supernatural working of God in a believers life. John 17:17 says that understanding the truth is not a work of modernist rationalism but a work of the Spirit. But the SPirit does guide us into ALL truth..So truth can be attained by the guiding, not apart from, the work of the Spirit.

The thing about faith, however, is that it must, by definition, go beyond what is supposed to be objective truth. If it didn't have to, then objective truth would be capable of providing epistemological access to God.

In order to have faith in something, you must first understand certain facts about that patrticular something you have faith in.

Consider this: Plenty of people had access to 'objective' truth about God in the incarnation- they could see Christ, they could listen to his words, touch his skin; they knew where he lived, who his mother was, etc. However, clearly simply apprehending the incarnation in this way was not salvific. Even the 'objective' hearing of the words of Christ (some of which were written down in the scriptures) meant little in regards to truth. The truth was not simply embodied in a 30-something jewish man who claimed to be the Son of God who people could objective access; the truth was embodied in the person of Christ which could only be accessed salvifically in a relational way. Christ talked about knowing the truth and that the truth would set free- well, he also said that he was the Truth. Thus, truth wasn't embodied objectively but rather was wrapped up in the subjective relation to the truth which was Christ.





I heavily disagree that absolute truth is found in human rationality, it is found in God.

My only caveat would be that God is the only absolute truth.

....And Always what God says, for God cannot lie. Therefore, Scripture is absolutely true being "God-breathed"

You are trying to argue against the rationalism of modernism that believes truth is found through the scientific method, which we too would argue against.

If I have been mistaken about your perspective, I apologize.

Just because we believe there is a such thing as objective truth, and that it is found in the Scriptures alone, does not mean we follow modernist thinking.

If objective truth is found in the scriptures alone, I think you are going to run into some very major problems.

1. You still have interpret the scriptures, which is going to be mediated by the personal subjectivity of the interpreter. If such a subjective approach can epistemologically access "objective truth", then your approach seems to make your rationality the arbiter of what is objective truth, which is really no different than the approach taken by the scientific method.

2. What possible reason would you have for believing the scriptures to be the only source of objective truth? If they alone contain objective truth, you have no objective means of determining this, unless you are going to capitulate to the categories of modern criticism, which will 1. probably invalidate your belief 2. again cause you to rely upon the principles of the scientific method and rationalism to make this determination.


I will get to this later as well.

Joshua A. Hitchcock said...

Ok, I will seek to answer your objections at this time..

Let us begin with this premise that I believe we can both agree upon:

1. God is Truth.
Some things that we can derive from this premise is that everything God does is true and everything he says is true.

2. The Bible claims for itself that it is God-breathed. (2 Timothy 3:16). The Greek word for inspired is theopneustos. meaning God-breathed. The Scriptures come from the very mouth of God.

3. If this claim is true, then the Scriptures are true and reliable.

4. If this claim is false, then the scriptures are not true and are not reliable.

5. If premise 1 and premise 3 are true, then the Bible is absolutely, infallibly true. And it is profitable for doctrine, correction, reproof, and training in righteousness as it claims to be.


But here we go: Humanity is fallen. None of us understand the truth of scripture exhastively, nor do I believe any human being to have an understanding of Scripture that is completely accurate. Note: This deffiecency of understanding is not located in the Scriptures, but within the sinful human being. OUr fallen state prevents us from a completely accuarate and comprehensive knowledge of the Scriptures. Nonetheless, despite the deficiencies of sinful human beings, the Scriptures remain what the are...truth. Regenerate Christians have been enlightened and have the Holy Spirit to guide them in all truth. We can understand the truth of scripture, although this is not an immediate knowledge, and we will never come to a completely accurate and exhaustive knowledge of God's revealed word on this side of heaven. Nevertheless, God has given us the tools to use to come to a reliable understanding of His word.


If it is God's word to humanity, he would not prevent us from understanding it at all. He guides us by His Spirit to understand what He has revealed through the enablement and inspiration of His spirit.