Human Comprehension

It is evidence of a false intellectualistic ideal for science to wish to have a comprehensive understanding of the facts of the universe. It is because man wants to be as God that he tries to understand facts comprehensively. Then when he finds that his universals are not comprehensive he concludes to agnosticism. He takes for granted that if he cannot catch the facts in his net completely, God is confronted with the same limitation.

 

Van Til, C. (1978). Christian-Theistic Evidences (p. 125). The Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company: Phillipsburg, NJ.

Aptitudes as Spiritual Gifts

Certainly some gifts involve distinctive endowment beyond the normal capacities of the recipient (e.g., prophecy and tongues, as we shall see below). But the direction of Paul's teaching is fairly expressed as follows: any capacity of the believer, including aptitudes present before conversion, brought under the controlling power of God's grace and functioning in his service is a spiritual gift. Spiritual gifts comprise all the ways in which God by the power of his Spirit uses Christians as instruments in his service.

1 Corinthians 7:7 is an instructive example of this breadth: celibacy or marriage, as the case may be, ought to be and can be a spiritual ministry. Biblically speaking, "charismatic" and "Christian" are synonymous. The Christian life in its totality is (to bo) a charismatic life. Christ's church as a whole is the charismatic movement.

 


Reason is Ministerial

...reason always functions as a servant, never as a master, to theology. Its proper place with respect to theology is to provide whatever tools might be helpful for theology to carry out its own task. It also means that the law of contradiction, and the use of that law, can never finally determine whether or not a particular Christian doctrine is true. That determination is left to revelation. What reason can do is help theology to organize, articulate, and expand its truths in such a way as to clarify their meaning.

 

Scott Oliphint. Reasons for Faith: Philosophy in the Service of Theology

Consistently Reformed Apologetic

"Being" has been one of the thorns in the flesh of philosophy only because philosophy historically has dogmatically presupposed its own epistemological autonomy. Parmenides was no closer to a proper understanding of being than was Heraclitus. Aquinas was no closer than Hegel. Once one assumes any fact to be apart from God, that fact will never be truly known."Facts are unaccounted for if Scripture is left out of account.'" It is for this reason that Van Til's approach is seen as a worldview apologetic. Only in a consistently Reformed apologetic can we see not just "being" or "reason" or "evidence" or "cause" as inexplicable apart from God, but all "things" are inexplicable apart from the presupposition of the God of Scripture.

 


Absolute Personality

If, in God, being and essence are really coterminous, we have before us an absolute personality. There is then no distinction between absoluteness and personality. God does not merely have personality, but is absolute personality.

 

Cornelius Van Til, An Introduction to Systematic Theology, p.346