27
Nov
2009

A God-Centered Approach to Language

Dr. Vern Sheridan Poythress returns to Christ the Center to discuss his latest book In the Beginning was the Word: Language: A God-Centered Approach to Language published by Crossway.  The panel discusses  Dr. Poythress’s multi-perspectival approach to Biblical studies and theology and specifically the trinitarian basis for language and the meaning of language.  Contrary to evolutionary theory, language is not merely a humanly constructed reality but is a gift from God.  The panel also considers the unique problems about how modernism and postmodernism view language

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Christ the Center focuses on Reformed Christian theology. In each episode a group of informed panelists discusses important issues in order to encourage critical thinking and a better understanding of Reformed doctrine with a view toward godly living. Browse more episodes from this program and learn how to subscribe.

9 Responses

  1. Pingback : Poythress on the Reformed Forum « Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth

  2. Thanks for doing this show. I found what Dr. Poythress had to say helpful. That corroborates what others have told me about multi-perspectivalism compared to tri-perspectivalism. I do have concerns about his association with Frame, but he is clearly saying something different than Frame is, and I appreciate the qualifications Dr. Poythress is willing to make. You CAN, in fact, pin him down; and I am comfortable with what I heard him say.

    So will you be doing a show on tri-perspectivalism?

  3. Pingback : Feeding on Christ » Blog Archive » Vern Poythress on Language and Tri-Perspectivalism

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  6. This looks like a great book. I saw it advertised in Books and Culture. As a faith and family and culture writer, I am always looking for books that examine the fusing of faith and writing from a Christian perspective.

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  7. some things i received from Dr. Poythress’ book on language:
    Poythress rightly contends that language must convey truth and those who deny such fall into self-impaling assertions (considering that they must employ language as meaningful, to deny that language is meaningful). Poythress adds: “Language when God uses it has a certain ontological primacy” (p. 256).

    Spoken truth retains its truth “only because God is continually present” — without the Christian worldview one is faced with Hume’s problem of Induction and this problem also surfaces in the dynamic of language. Additionally it can be utilized to demonstrate that mathematics, identity, and countless truths have permanent aspects to them only because God is always present and continually sustains them. An always-in-flux material cosmos lacks the capacity to guarantee a retention of anything over time, even a short duration of time. Hence the non-theist cannot account for the truth that 2 + 2 = 4 even five minutes after it was asserted. The omnipotent and always present God has the capacity to guarantee truths can retain their truth in the future.

    dr. poythress also argues that universals require God and connectivity presupposes and requires God (pp. 256-260).

    for interested readers:
    dr. poythress’ book provides various outstanding graphs that add precision and comprehension.
    Chapters include:

    – Language and the Trinity
    – God Sustaining Language
    – God’s Rule
    – Imaging
    – World history
    – Speaking and Writing
    – Truth as a Perspective
    – Modernism and Postmodernism
    – Doubt
    – Platonic Ideas
    – Reaching Out to Deconstructionism
    – and more.
    his volume on language has been endorsed by John Frame, C. John Collins, and Wayne Grudem. Frame extols this work: “God is not merely a possibility, not merely a conclusion, but the starting point for any understanding at all.”

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