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The Essential Van Til – In the Beginning (Part 5)

Van Til now turns to Barth’s doctrine of creation. Barth denies that creation as it came forth from the hand of God was good, and was to have a genuine significance. Instead, Barth’s doctrine resembles that of paganism which held…
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The Essential Van Til — In the Beginning (Part 4)

As we continue to unpack Van Til’s review of Zerbe’s book we come to the second part of the review, which concerns Barth’s epistemology. Van Til opens with an absurd claim, and then unpacks what he means: [Barth] has no…
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The Essential Van Til – In the Beginning (Part 3)

When I first heard about Barth’s concept of the “wholly other” God, it sounded perfectly orthodox. Barth’s emphasis on the qualitative difference between God and man struck me as nothing but good Reformed theology. In addition, I had heard that…
open-book

The Essential Van Til – In the Beginning (Part 2)

In the last post we began to consider Van Til’s first published criticism of Barth. It was set in the context of a book review.[1] There we underscored Van Til’s criticism that Barth’s “theology is based upon an antitheistic theory…
Cornelius Van Til

The Essential Van Til – In the Beginning (Part 1)

It is often assumed that The New Modernism (1946) is Van Til’s first published writing in which he evaluates Barth’s thought. Actually Van Til first published about Barth in a Christianity Today book review in 1931.[1] That was just two…
Cornelius Van Til

The Essential Van Til — How Irrationalism is Rationalism

For Van Til no form of unbelief escapes the charge of rationalism. Irrationalism is only a disguised form of rationalism. But before getting to that, it might help to explain what he means by irrationalism. Irrationalism is modern critical thinking…
Cornelius Van Til

The Essential Van Til – Wholly Revealed

Last week we talked about Barth’s “absolutely other” god. There we noted how Barth begins with an unknown and unknowable god. In other words, he begins with the god of modernism. But, as we also noted, he does not stop…
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The Essential Van Til – The Absolutely Other

It is often said that Barth believed in a god who was “wholly other.” It’s an oft repeated phrase, but rarely understood. Van Til would say “absolutely other.” By that Van Til understood a modern conception of God. It was…
Princeton Theological Seminary

The Essential Van Til — More on Old Princeton

In chapter 3 of Christian Apologetics Van Til addresses the issue of the “point of contact” (Anknüpfungspunkt). That is to say, the point at which the believer may make contact with the unbeliever in the task of defending the faith.…
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The Essential Van Til — No God But the Christian God

Both Van Til and Barth rejected all forms of bare theism. That is, they denied a generic view of God. Both believed this “god” was an idol. This is the god of human autonomy and philosophy. It comes from an…
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